knittedgems

Mini Skein of Yarn and Butterflies

In Spinning on September 25, 2008 at 3:39 pm
From Spinning

It’s a very small skein of wool. It took me three weeks to spin. I probably won’t be able to knit anything out of it. (What can you do with 10 yards of wool anyway?) But oh, the things I learned while spinning it!

First, mohair is slippery, but manageable if worked from roving.

Second, alpaca would much rather fly away on a cloud than be bound and spun into a yarn. Blending helps.

Third, even though alpaca does not have the lanolin that sheep’s wool does, it is much more enjoyable to work with after it has been washed. (Extensive washing is not required. A good soak to get rid of the dust is all that is needed.)

Fourth, practice makes perfect. By the end, I had quite a good rhythm going.

Fifth, I love to spin!

From Spinning

So, what is on my spindle now?

Well, I have 2 spindles (not counting the plying-only spindle), so naturally I have 2 projects.

Project #1: More of the brown Shetland roving. This is being spun on my new top whorl (no hook) spindle. The spindle wobbled at first until I got a good length of yarn wrapped around it. Now it spins like a dream – a fast dream.

Project #2: Since I’m still nervous about washing and prepping the llama (it’s precious to me), I thought I would practice some more on the alpaca. This is Buddy’s wool that is being washed in the basin. I plan to blend it with ever more of the brown Shetland roving.

From Spinning

Even though I have a butterfly living in my tomato garden that flies all around me when I water my plants, my blog title wasn’t referring to her (him?). I was referring to the butterflies in my stomach. I always get them right before I publish a new pattern. You see, my Christmas tree skirt pattern is complete. It has been tech edited. By the way, if you are a fellow designer and have been sitting on the fence about hiring a tech editor, allow me to push you off. Hiring a tech editor was one of the wisest business decisions I have made thus far. First, my tech editor caught several mistakes in both my charts and in my written instructions. Then, she took the layout I had and spit-shined it. It gleams now. I’ve never been so proud of a pattern. (Of course, I tend to say that about every pattern I write).

Still, I’m nervous. Will people like it? Will people hate it? Will the newness wear off and leave it as dull as a rock? Time will tell. It goes live soon – very soon.

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  1. I sooo enjoyed reading about your spinning experience. I am especially pleased about point #5. Keep it up. It only gets better.

  2. It’s a terrific pattern that people will love! I predict it will be a classic knit – who doesn’t want a special Christmas tree skirt? This is also a great time to release the pattern as it will give people time to make it before this holiday.

    Your green spun yarn is so pretty and looks so fluffy. Might it be enough to trim something?

  3. Marie you will find that some wools have less lanolin than others. That’s one of the reasons I moved to a Finn ram…very little lanolin compared to heavily laden Corriedales and Romneys. Lovely skein, could be for an embelishment of some kind?

    Good luck at the game this weekend! I hope the weather holds out. The Mets are truly a tightrope team! And good luck with the pattern!

  4. Even if you don’t knit anything with it, it’s beautiful. I would just display it. The Christmas tree skirt is beautiful, I love it and I’m sure everyone else will, too. It’s fascinating watching it go from an idea to a real pattern.

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