Tag Archive | drop spindle

Shawls and Bobbin Lace Abound

The good news is that I finally obtained a full time role!  I start my new position in a week and am looking forward to getting back into the workforce.  On the fiber end this will be good for me so that I stop creating Works In Progress (WIP).  My time off has seen me cast on several shawls – two of which are gossamer web based.  The Sunflower shawl is nearly done as I just have a 1/4 left of the edging to complete.  It still looks so much smaller than the photo but my hopes are that it grows with blocking.

I have begun and ripped out and restarted my gossamer triangular shawl and seem to be progressing much better now that I am past the first 4 rows of the border.  I still think there is an error in the pattern as I had to reduce some stitches to make things balanced but there is nothing online about this issue so perhaps it is just me.

IMG_4030[1]Bobbin lace is still awesome and I am working on my first true lace edging which will be attached to a handkerchief when it is done.  There is a great deal of pleasure of moving the bobbins around and pining threads to create intricate lace work.  I have had thoughts about learning needle lace but for now I am concentrating on learning Torchon lace work.  After all there are several styles of bobbin lace still yet to learn and master.  My homemade pillow is by far my favorite lace pillow but we shall see how things change when the sectional pillow arrives. I actually made this piece with silk yarn I purchased during the YarnFest in Loveland, CO in April.  I am amazed that the silk fibers stayed in place when the pins were removed.

IMG_3990[1]On the festival front it looks like I will only be participating in the Golden Farmer’s Market in July and August.  My heart is not into going to Salida this year so I decided to skip the festival and hopefully join it next year.  The only other market I am looking into is the Denver Public Library’s Paris Holiday Market in November.  Of course I will also have the Rocky Mountain Weaver’s Guild Sale in November to hopefully move my hand spun yarns into new homes.

I realized that I have not done much yarn spinning as my stash is so large.  I am finding it difficult to procure a local venue to sell the hand spun so I have begun listing the yarns on the Etsy site.  Once several of the 50+ skeins of yarn are sold I am sure the urge to boost my supply will occur.  For now I have some merino/tencel fiber being spun on my Russian spindle to be used in making a gossamer web shawl – 8 ounces of fiber should be enough to make this work.  Of course I also have flax fibers to play with and ply with different fibers (silk and cotton).  Having a huge stash of hand spun has allowed me to focus on knitting items and of course create lace with bobbins.

IMG_3989[1]I just have this nagging feeling that I am going to forget what my WIPs are at some point as in general I never had more than 3 at a time.  I don’t even want to contemplate how many actual WIPs there are but I breath a bit easier knowing that a few are almost complete.  As I get bored easily edgings are generally my downfall as they are so repetitive but the Sunflower shawl edge got a lot focus while at the hair salon and under the dryer this weekend.  My cotton spinning class was cancelled as we didn’t have enough people sign up for it but hopefully the silk and drop spindle courses will happen this summer/fall.

Well I am going to get back to knitting the gossamer web shawl for a bit and until next time – keep your needles sharp and yarn in abundance!

Spindle spun Buffalo yarn

Very excited to be coming to the end of the process of making my newest buffalo yarn.   The first half ounce of buffalo fiber was spun into a single on the Russian spindle.  I then found a dark purple wool crepe yarn from Habu to ply with the buffalo a few weeks ago.  I spent part of my Sunday combining the two yarns onto a plying spindle and just need to make a plying disc this week to ply the two yarns together.IMG_3401[1]   IMG_3466[1]Buffalo Fiber    IMG_3467[1] Habu wool yarn

I have learned from this process that my “plying” spindle is very heavy and I might want to get something a bit smaller.  My hand/wrist ached a bit from combining the threads onto the spindle.  I found myself taking lots of breaks from the project just to give my wrist a break.  Not sure of the yardage as of yet but there is quite a bit of yarn on the plying spindle.  It is nice to see the pieces of the project coming together and know that I am creating something special.

IMG_3472[1]               IMG_3473[1] yarns ready to be plied.

Hats, caps and more hats

I seem to be on a hat making binge.  Trying out patterns with different yarns and textures has kept me very occupied over the past week.  I’m also using up several of the skeins of yarn purchased in the past few months too.  Tonight I hope to clean and block my wool baby hat and partially frog another hat as I’m running out of yarn to make it as long as I wanted.  Oh well it will have a child or small headed adult as its future owner.  As I don’t actually have many items for this demographic this is a great opportunity to broaden my horizons.

On the Navajo Spindle is the Oreo Cookie blend of Alpaca fibers which will be sold at Ancient Treasures Alpaca Ranch.  The wheel has some blue wool top that seems to be expanding in its raw form the more I spin since it is being spun very thinly.  The problem with spinning lace weight is the fiber supply lasts a lot longer than when spinning worsted or bulky.  I know though when this fiber is plied and cleaned it will grow in diameter to perhaps a DK weight yarn.  That’s the great part of spinning fibers multiple times – one learns the nuances of the fiber and can alter techniques to truly achieve the right quality of yarn.

My big news is that I have not one but four students signed up to take my “Learn to Spin On A Drop Spindle” class in late February.  Yes, I do know two of my students but the other two are complete strangers to me.  I have the drop spindle kits set aside for the class and am gathering books, materials, websites and such to share with the class.  Hoping to rent the drum carder from the guild as a prop in the class and I will be bringing my comb/hackle set, wheel and various spindles as tools.  Of course given my fiber supply my students will have ample opportunity to try their hands at spinning the various wool and alpaca fibers in my stash.ImageImage