July 10, 2014

Spinning for Meds...

I should probally clarify ;-)

I've been spinning like a mad woman this week. Spinning has now transistioned from mildly irritating to relaxing to a calming Meditative process. Which I quite enjoy now.

 I've made quite a bit of good progess for a newbie! I fell off the spinning bandwagon for a couple weeks after my epic failure during my first time plying 2 bobbins. I don't even want to go into it. It was beyond a shot to my very small and sensitive spinning ego. I ended up clipping the crappy plied yarn (????) if it could even be called that and left the remaining bobbins to marinate for a bit until my itty bitty ego recovered. 

If you follow me on Instagram, these photos will be recycled. Sorry :-( But there will be further explanations :-)

So at the beginning of the week I finally took out the spinning wheel and continued on spinning. I topped up each bobbin so they were full (after my epic embarrassment) and decided to try plying 2 bobbins again. 

I must have been in the Zone or something because it turned out better than I thought it would. I had mentally prepared myself to fail again. So I was quite happy with myself :-)

I was on a high from my success that I spun 2 more bobbins the next day and even filled up a partial 3rd one. By then, I was tired of spinning white roving. So I decided to dye up the last portion of the roving with Kool-Aid in my crockpot.

All was going well. I added some citric acid to the water in the crockpot, soaked the roving in the sink with water and vinegar. Added the roving to the crockpot and started adding the Kool-Aid I had premixed. I wanted saturated colors, so I used 2 packets per 8oz of hot water for each color. I used Orange, Grape, Lemon-Lime and Cherry.

I added the first layer of color using a cooking syringe. Purple on the bottom and then I did spots of green and orange on the top and let it cook on high for just over an hour.

By then the dye had exhausted, and  I added another layer of dye and let it cook for another hour, then the last layer and let it cook for a couple more hours on high. 

Then it was ready to come out. The water was mostly clear by then so I turned off the crockpot and poured the roving into my sink and let it cool down. It took about an hour. I then soaked it in a mixture of water and synthrapol for about 10 minutes then rinsed it, squeezed it out and put it out to dry on my deck on a drying rack.

It lightened up a bit by the time it was completely dry.

I was not happy with how I dyed it. It looked fuggly. But I was determined to spin it, regardless of how ugly it was.

I was completely shocked how nice it looked as I was spinning it out. I then decided that I didn't just want to do a 2 ply yarn, I wanted it to be mostly white with a hint of color. So I decided to try a 3 ply yarn, for the first time. My 2 ply yarn turned out relatively well, previously. Why couldn't I set the bar a little higher and try a 3 ply?

Wow!! I'm still shocked it turned out so well. It looked even nicer when I washed it and set it in the sun to let the twist set.

Now I'm on a spinning kick and I'm not even participating in the Tour de Fleece!! Currently I'm spinning some beautiful alpaca that I got as a stocking stuffer from my sister in law a long time a ago when I tried drop spindling. 

I have plans for this :-) I have another 3-1/4oz bag of alpaca to spin then a 1/2 lb bag of a beautiful dark brown Corriedale. I think they'll make a wonderful match. What do you think?

Happy Knitting!! Or Spinning ;-)

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