Monday, October 26, 2009


I counted. There are 17 skeins between 2 and 4 ounces, 4 mini skeins, 2 batches of dyed top, and 5 ounces of dyed fleece.

Our bathroom is just not that big. Check it out - left is the tub, middle is the radiator, and on the right is the door. I was standing against the back wall when I took these shots. I think it's 8'x5'.

Left to right: obnoxiously orange superwash merino (I love it!); light-rust romney spun from the (dyed) lock; tiny bits of pink skeins behind the romney that you can barely see; some corriedale for another person; some of my cvm/alpaca blend for my eventual sweater; light blue superwash merino behind (under); and some dark brown superwash top for a sweater for a friend.

Left to right, some are the same: Light blue superwash merino (I'm calling it Blue Ice, after a picture of a bit of a glacier someone took); the sweater yarn; top for my friend's sweater; you can see a hint of the alpaca/silk that was dyed orchid (same dyelot as the cormo fleece drying at the bottom); a mixed skein - one Blue Ice single, one mystery single from a gift batt - pretty sure it includes at least merino, alpaca, silk, and something sparkly, not sure what else; another small skein of Blue Ice; a purple yarn that I think is superwash wool but I couldn't swear to it; the green/gray yarn for the other person; mauve 3 ply, magenta merino (from fleece, not commercial top); light rust; obnoxious orange; and the green stuff I mentioned in my last post that some lucky person will get to use.

These will all get glamour shots after they dry, before they move on to their new life. So happy that these aren't guilt-tripping me anymore, since I finished spinning some of them more than a month ago (see, I was going to write that I finished them a month ago, but finished is the other step - had to clarify that I finished spinning).

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Finished finishing

I have about 4 pounds of fiber hanging from any available rod in the bathroom - shower curtain, towel rod, shelves, plus some cormo fleece laid out to dry. I dyed 3 batches of fiber this weekend, and I've been slacking on finishing the yarn I've spun in the past month. That's why there's been a dirth of pictures. Once it dries, I hope to take lots of pictures. I've got yarn in about 10 different colorways, several different fibers. Some of it's for me, some of it is for specific others, some is for the shop, and some is for giveaways and samples. I am yarnful.

There's some green BFL (I think) that I'm super-happy with. I can't think of anything to make with it, so it'll be off to another happy home somewhere. In addition to the Etsy shop, the Minnesota Weavers Guild has a Fiber Fair in November, and I'm signed up to sell there.

You'd think finishing yarn would be when the spinning is done, but it's not. The yarn has to be washed and "whacked." I prefer the harsh finishing method. I wash/rinse the yarn 4 times, alternating hot and cold water. This isn't recommended as a general rule for items made from wool, because most people don't want to turn their knitted or crocheted items into felt. But for finishing the yarn, a little bit of felting is helpful - it makes the yarn a little stronger, a little less splitty. Whacking the yarn (snapping it or twirling it) gets some of the water out of it and evens out the twist of the yarn.

So I finished yarn tonight for about 90 minutes - filling and refilling buckets of water for all the skeins of yarn, then whacking and hanging it to dry. Finishing is pretty tiring.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Is it just me?

I was at a spinning group last week. I carded some fall colors - browns and dark reds - and everyone was admiring the colors, and saying how perfect they were for the season.

I then started spinning orange. Not fall colors orange. Bright, obnoxious, you-might-need-sunglasses orange. Fire Engine Orange, if fire engines were painted orange.

As the days get shorter and darker, I need color and brightness that much more.

I ended up giving the autumn-color batts away to another spinner, who was planning to spin it for autumn leaves in a tapestry she was weaving. The batts needed to go to a home where they'd be loved.

I'm a little worried, though. If I need this much brightness in October, by the time February hits, I'm afraid my fiber will have to provide its own light source. Maybe be radioactive.