Friday, January 22, 2010

My first hand-spun yarn!

Captain's Log, Stardate 01.22.2010

Since late December, I have been learning how to spin wool into yarn using a drop spindle. Yes! It’s true, I have gone totally Amish/old school.

(No offense to any Amish or old school people. I mean that in the nicest way.)

I don’t know why I suddenly decided to learn to spin. Or if I did know why, I’ve forgotten (I probably explained it to Captain Caffeine at some point, but now I don’t remember what excuse I gave to him).

Not having any yarn shops nearby that teach spinning, I bought a Cascade spindle online and some really soft, silky merino wool roving from Etsy.com. I read all kinds of online articles and watched youtube videos.

And I spun my first yarn! Here it is!





It’s a lace weight yarn (about 30 wraps per inch), since I like using finer gauge yarns over bulkier yarns. It’s rather uneven (although it’s not as easy to tell in the picture) and I didn’t ply it very well, but I made it all by myself!

Captain Caffeine does not appreciate the whole, “I made this all by myself from scratch” concept. He understands the “I made this by myself and saved myself some money” concept. Which I’m not sure is actually true in this case. Well, maybe a little, if I continue to use my drop spindle until it has worn down into a toothpick.

I also bought some more roving from Yarnmarket.com, made by Cherry Tree Hill, and some from Tempe Yarn and Fiber. I am currently working on the Cherry Tree Hill roving and am going to try a 3-ply next.

I also have been haunting Craigslist and found a listing for a secondhand spinning wheel! I picked it up yesterday! It was very inexpensive compared to a new wheel, which is perfect since I’m not sure how I’ll like spinning on a wheel. I haven’t really tried the wheel yet because I’ve been perfecting my drop spindle technique to get more consistent gauge singles.

So what do you think of my new hobby?

12 comments :

  1. I looks fantastic! Like something you'd buy at the store! I've thought about learning how to spin, but haven't done it yet. Now you've got me thinking again. :)

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  2. Your yarn looks great! I really should pull out my drop spindle and work on my spinning again too...

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  3. Thanks guys! Geekwif, it was really fun to learn how to spin with the drop spindle--the videos on youtube are pretty good. And it's really relaxing!

    Shelley--you totally should!!! In fact, I think you should treat yourself to some really yummy fiber to get yourself in the groove again. ;)

    Camy

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  4. Wow, This is a great hobby you have. I use to crochet but life got in the way and I so I quit 30 yrs ago. Sometimes I think I will start again but then don't. I have to many things I am doing now and just don't have time.

    I am from Georgia
    misskallie2000 at yahoo dot com

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  5. I know, I wish I had more time too!
    Camy

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  6. Very pretty, and you are right about it being a very soothing activity (probably most of the time unless something goes terribly wrong!) - brain studies show that repetitive activities really are great for brain rest, very calming.

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  7. That looks so lovely! What a fun hobby.

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  8. Carrie, I love when you chime in b/c your psychology background is way cool! I'm glad you said that! Although that only affirms that I need to buy more wool roving!!! LOL

    Sheila--thanks so much!

    Camy

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  9. If your hubby complains about how much all that stuff costs, just get a quote for the fee for therapy in your area ha! That is what I tell mine when he complains about the cost of my beads. At least you probably don't have yarn shows do you? Bead shows are budget killers!

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  10. See Carrie, great minds think alike! LOLOLOL We do have a major yarn show here, Stitches West in the Santa Clara Convention Center every year. It's reeeeeeaally hard not to spend too much money when I go!

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  11. Beautiful job, Camy! I'm proud of you for braving it and taking up something new! I myself have been thinking of taking up crochet because I came across a book on making cute little critters the size of hacky sack balls. And, well, when one sistah gets brave another sistah gets brave! :D Yay You! <3

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  12. OMG those little critters sound so cute! You should totally do them!

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