Happy Wheel-aversary!

Three years ago today, I brought my wheel home. Seems like I just got it!!! :)

What better way to celebrate than by spinning! :)

I have finished spinning the rainbow singles. I will let the twist settle a bit before I wash and finish the yarn.

I have now picked up the pink & black merino/tencel blend I started a while ago. (Although bobbin #1 is missing. Time for a bobbin hunt, I guess). But here’s the progress on bobbin #2.

Can’t wait to see how this looks plied!! :D

pink & black

Here is what I am spinning. :) this is vintage stash. I am pretty sure that this yarn will stripe. Can’t wait to see how.


It is merino tencel, dyed by Spincerely Yours. After spinning that cashmere silk blend, this fiber is easier and going much faster previous attempts at spinning this blend.


one reason why i love to spin yarn

I finally finished the cashmere/tussah silk handspun yarn! It was a challenge (not as easy as wool) but I made it work. :-)

(in progress photos can be found HERE)

I am still considering using this in the stripe study shawl as the contrasting color.

It took me a bit to find a way to spin this yarn that I wanted – which was more of a supported long draw than worsted. Here’s a very basic description of how I did it.

I pulled off a bit of the fiber and drafted it out sideways.

I folded that in half.

Then, from the tips, rolled into rolags(ish) and spun from the end. (I don’t really consider them to be rolags ’cause I didn’t card the fiber.)

I had just enough tension on my wheel to pull the fiber out gently and I pulled my fiber hand back slowly, matching the speed that the twist entered the drafting zone. I used my other had to control the speed & pull from my wheel.

I learned a lot from from spinning this yarn and got something very soft and pretty in the end. Soooo worth it! :D

fiber friday: mmmmm… cashmere

Buying new stuff for my stash is not currently in the budget so I am looking to my cherished stash to knit patterns that I’ve fallen in love with.

One such pattern is the Stripe Study Shawl. If you have not seen this recently released pattern, it is an asymmetrical triangular shawl knit in garter stitch.

I pondered a bit, trying to figure out what I wanted to use. I have some CCM Merino-Nylon that I could use, but the yarn said it didn’t want to be this pattern. (Yes, yarn can be pretty particular about what it wants to be.)

Then I remembered that I have some reclaimed/redyed yarn that I bought quite a while ago from AllSpunUp before all the lovely spinning fiber filled her shop. It’s this lovely, blue-purpley fingering weight yarn and oh so soft.

So the next question became what would I use for the contrasting color? Enter the cashmere/tussah silk fiber that I bought last year.

I originally had other plans for it but that did not come to fruition so, after I finish my current spinning project, I plan to spin a 2-ply fingering-ish weight yarn to use as a part of this shawl.

A cashmere/silk shawl…in garter stitch…can you imagine?

I’ll go now while you think about that.

Bye! :)

did I mention what I am spinning?

I recently got some fiber from Spincerely Yours in the colorway ‘Periwinkle’. I was really drawn in by the subtle/soft blues and purples and had to buy it.

It’s spins like a dream – so soft. I am pulling off pieces of the top, and drafting it out sideways then spinning in a supported long draw so the resulting singles have a bit of air in them.

I hope this will make a nice squishy two-ply fingering weight yarn.

fiber friday: kaleidescope

I always said that if Dave ever offered his hand painted fibers again, that would be one of the first thing I bought.

Cabin Cove Mercantile recently reopened for business and I filled up my cart with goodies!!

This is 4 ounces of 100% squishy merino in the Kaleidescope colorway. (I can’t resist a rainbow. ;-) )

The last fiber I bought a few years ago from the Mercantile is still in my stash. It’s that ‘beloved’ stash that sits there ’cause you don’t wanna to mess it up. Well, I’m a much better spinner now and make more yarn that I like than not.

I can’t wait to spin it all! :)

in transition

It’s finished!

(Started: July 2010; Finished: November 25, 2010.)

I originally thought it was closer to fingering weight while I was spinning it, but now that it’s done, it’s more like lace weight. It’s approx. 840 yards.

It’s from The Painter Tiger fiber club – about 5 ounces of Corriedale, a gradient from pink to coral.

I call it ‘In Transition’.

tour de fleece 2010 – finis!

I finished my yarn on the last day of the tour! :) (It was very much a coincidence ’cause I didn’t know when the end of tour was – I just wanted to spin!)

I ended up with a very nice squishy yarn. Non-superwash merino. I am a little disappointed that the blue dye bled in the finishing wash, coloring the natural end of the of the yarn, but I’ll get over it. I suppose it was inevitable but still a little bit of a bummer.

This is the first yarn that I kinda designed. I think that’s cool. I call it ‘Gradient Blues’. There’s one thing that I know for sure – it’s gonna be used for something for me.

I think the photos speak for themselves so enjoy! :)

tour de fleece 2010 – week one

For this year’s Tour de Fleece, I’m pretty much goin’ it alone – my own personal challenge. Tourdefleece.com is not active for this year’s challenge and I decided not to do the Ravelry version after not enjoying it last year… and I’m havin’ fun.

On July 3, I bought some Schacht hand cards – 72 ppi…

I did dye some merino fiber, but after impatiently waiting for it to dry, I decided to pull some fiber that I’d previously dyed and card it with some natural color merino – total of 4 oz. I really enjoyed blending the fiber with my new fiber tools and made my first rolags. :)

This was a good opportunity to work on my long draw.

I heard a tip in episode 4 of the SpinDoctor podcast that helped tremendously – so I’m working to draw back at the same speed the twist enters the fiber. This is very challenging. One moment it’s working then the next moment I lose it. I know fiber preparation has a lot to do with the success of this technique so I figure that better I get at the fiber prep, the better I’ll get at the long draw.

I’m planning on chain-plying once I finish the singles. I can’t wait to see how it looks! :D

from fiber to finis!

I finished my fingerless mittens!

I call them ‘Elemental Mitts’ (aka Ele-Mitts). (A woman from my knitting group came up with that and said I could use it! :) )

They are mine, all mine and I love them! My first completed project using my own handspun! :D

I still have some yarn left to make something matchy-matchy so stay tuned for that. I’m still deciding what to make.


fiber friday: rainbow pastel

I took a small break from spinning for a few weeks but with the coming of Tour de Fleece and inspiration from The Hyper Monkey, I decided to start ‘training’ and finally sat down at my wheel to finish my current project.

This was spun from The Painted Tiger’s ‘CMY Party Mix’.

I just wanted a basic barberpole yarn, which worked most of the way except for a couple of sections of green & orange that are more solid.

I call it ‘Rainbow Pastel’. I think I like it! :)

fiber friday: after the storm

I recently saw a rainbow arching across the sky. It was after a rainstorm – the sun came out and as I was driving home, I looked to my left and there was a rainbow… almost a full rainbow. Inspired, I went home and started spinning this – 4 oz Superwash Merino dyed by The Painted Tiger.

My goal was the split the top in half and spin so the colors matched up.

Well… that didn’t work out as planned, which is why I ended up with two skeins.

Nonetheless, I like it. :)

a different kind of rainbow

A while back, when I was experimenting with dyeing, I tried to dye some silk. But it didn’t really turn out the way I’d hoped. I’d read that silk doesn’t absorb water as quickly as wool so you need to soak it longer. So I did. The result was that the silk top seemed to disintegrate in the water. Not wanting to waste good fiber, I dyed it anyway, trying a technique that I came up with on the spot. I never really liked the final product so I didn’t take pictures and hid it in my stash.

Last December, when I couldn’t decide what to spin next, I pulled it out. I hadn’t spun silk before and figured it would be an good introduction. Since it was more like roving, I used more of a long draw to spin this fiber.

One thing I’ve learned about spinning (and somehow keep forgetting) is that the ‘ugliest’ of hand dyed fiber can make the prettiest of yarns.

I’m gonna have to try this dyeing technique again. :)

winter rainbow

I finally finished yarn I started for my Ravelympics challenge. I wanted to spin 8 oz of fiber. Unfortunately, work kinda took over my life (don’t you hate when that happens?). Thankfully, that won’t be permanent, but the result was I wasn’t able to complete my challenge but I did finish the singles by the time the Olympics were over and about a week or two later the yarn was finished. So I present ‘Winter Rainbow’ – 8 ounces of Corriedale Cross (not at soft as Corriedale alone), dyed by The Painted Tiger.

As sometimes happens with yarns I make, I don’t always instantly love them – that was the case with this one … but it grew on me. It’s definitely spun a little more evenly than the previous version.

Ok, I’m off to knit the pink shawl. Happy knitting and/or spinning to you!

are wii having fun?

Yes! Wii are! :D … and that’s…

The good news:
I got a Wii last month! I won it at my company holiday party! Can you believe that? And I love it! I love how active you have to be to play it. I received Wii Fit Plus for Christmas and finally got a TV stand for my TV and soon I’ll have things set up the way I want it and Wii Fit, here I come!

The bad news:
The Wii has distracted me from my spinning! :roll: . I know! How frustrating! (I did, however, achieve my goal of spinning or fiber prep every day in December so I am pleased.)

Can someone find out how to add more hours in the day please? There is not enough time for the fun stuff. *pouts*

Ok, enough pouting! I have what you’ve been waiting for – more stash enhancement! :D

It’s from The Painted Tiger – 8 ounces Corriedale Cross in the colorway ‘RBY Party’.

I had so much fun spinning ‘CMY Party‘, I couldn’t resist a chance to try this one.

I plan on chain-plying this fiber as well, but I hope to spin the singles a little thinner.

See ya later! :)