Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Spinning... the upcoming holidays... and other random things...

I have been longing to spin again. I have no roving that I want to spin immediately however. I have recently remembered that several years ago I bought 1 pound of fine white Shetland roving in order to spin lace weight.

Can you imagine? A whole pound of handspun Shetland lace weight? The intention was to eventually use it for a wedding veil. 'Cause I'm me and these are the kinds of ideas I get. Now, I still want to knit my own lace wedding veil... possibly using the Unst Bridal Shawl pattern from Heirloom Lace... but I don't think I'll manage it in handspun lace weight. I'd be too afraid - at this point anyway - of the singles not being strong enough and snapping in places during blocking, and I've yet to produce reliable singles thin enough to be plied and still qualify as a fine lace weight. So Jamieson & Smith or Jamieson of Shetland (no relation between the two companies, from what I understand) it will likely be.

Back to the point... So I had taken just a bit out of one 8 ounce bag many months ago to do a little spinning demo for some friends who were gazing with considerable wonder at my spinning wheel. Maybe a 10 inch piece? There was a little more than half that length still in a little plastic baggy, set aside in my yarn basket. I had never taken it back out to my fiber storage. This morning, I was just reading about pre-drafting and thinking I have got to try this NOW! So I found that little bit, pre-drafted it and started spinning...

I don't know if it's the pre-drafting or the fact that Shetland is such gorgeously yummy stuff, or what! But this... It is so deliciously lofty and soft! My goodness! I've never spun anything so lofty! It's so full of air, I find it hard to believe that it doesn't float away. About 12.5 yards of heavy worsted weight (or maybe even bulky weight... it's 6 wpi) out of maybe 6 or 7 inches of roving... Luscious! Nowhere near as evenly spun as I'd like, but I didn't realize how lofty it would get after washing when I was spinning. (It dried almost instantly! 30 minutes and it's barely damp!) I'll know next time. Pictures are impossible for the moment... Maybe after the sun has risen there will be light that will show it well outside. Inside, all is blurry... (Oh, I'm listening to Emma by Jane Austen at librivox.org right now. It's affecting.)

GAH!! I love spinning yarn!

Thank goodness I have a pound of roving on the way from a nice vendor at etsy, yarntospin. Dark green and dark blue Corriedale (8 ounces each). These are for Holiday gifts, and I know not all of it will be used for that purpose. There's more I need to order for gifts, but I haven't figured out what exactly yet. A natural black fiber, a burgandy or purple fiber (or both), and perhaps a natural white/cream fiber... And maybe some hand-painted roving... This last being only a gift for myself because I long to spin one... especially now that I know of the wonders of pre-drafting... I have quite a few which I'm coveting in my favorites list at etsy.

Meanwhile, I find myself in need of two very different patterns for mitts. I'd like them to be patterns I haven't knitted before (which takes Elann's Marquise Gauntlets, and Knitty's Fetching and Dashing patterns out of consideration). Recommendations? I'd ask for suggestions of very specific kinds of patterns for very specific purposes here, but I don't want to give away the plan in case gift recipients might be reading. If you wish to help me with this, message me through Ravelry or through my e-mail if you have it...

2 comments:

La Duchesse said...

Ooooh. That sounds like such a lovely idea!

The Evangeline gauntlets are nice, too. The cable pattern is a little complicated, but it's an easy pattern once you get used to it. I did mine with a provisional thumb, like the Fetching gloves. ;)

Rachael said...

I'll have to check that pattern out! I do love the gauntlets that you made with it...