Monday, 5 May 2008

Decreasing the stash

Stashing is fun - I'm the first to admit it. But when I can bring home four folding plastic storage boxes from Wilkinson's and fill them all with fibre within minutes of arriving home, I can't help but think that I need to do more spinning and less stashing. Granted, this was after Wonderwool and a marathon of fleece-washing, but still...

To that end, I tackled some of my Wonderwool stash this weekend - two of the pink dyed fibre braids from the "Sunday haul" photo in my previous post. They were from and one of the sellers is "hipknitskerrie" on Ravelry. (I need to remember to contact them and ask what kind of wool this is!) They spun up really quickly, I was actually rather surprised - so I can conclude that 1) hipknitskerrie sells good stash and 2) my skills must be improving! I was very careful not to overtwist the ply this time too, which made for slow plying but a better result.

The yarn is actually still a bit wet in the photo - it's hung up to dry all day but I wanted to get the photo done before the light faded. Pink isn't really my thing so I imagine it'll go onto Etsy once it's dry and measured.

I learned a few things from spinning this one, which is a two ply of as-yet-unknown length or wpi:

* I shouldn't spin while listening to music unless the music has the same beat throughout all the tracks. Instead I kept a particular tv advert in my head this time which has a good beat to it and that really made it a lot easier to spin consistently. (If you're curious, it's the one with the girl singing "beep, beep, beep, beep, beep, beep, beep go the horns on the cars in the street..." It wouldn't get out of my head, so I put it to work.) *Plying* to music, though, didn't seem to be a problem since I kept stopping to check the twist anyway.

* Predrafting is pretty essential for me, and I should keep doing it, especially with fibre that has been stored in a braid.

* It's worth putting a bit more twist than you think you need into the singles when you're making them - I didn't have any problems with it breaking while I was plying, which normally happens at least once per bobbin.

I ended up - as usual - having more of one single than the other, so I've got a bit of leftover pink. I may end up taking all of these leftovers and making a completely wild skein - I could call it Technicolour Dreamcoat or something. What do you do with your leftover singles after plying?

I'm still not quite to the point where I will be able to spin my own sock yarn, but I think I'm getting there...

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