08 July 2007

Recently off the wheel

Seattle Blues
The last of the "bookstore mystery wool" purchase. My dyed purple/blue roving yielded 425 yards of 2-ply at 10 wraps per inch.
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As I came to the end of the bobbins, I had just a little left and did a navajo 3-ply with the remainder yarn. Here is a photo to illustrate the difference between 2-ply and 3-ply. The 3-ply is sitting on top of the 2-ply. Notice that the color makes smooth transitions with the navajo 3-ply. The 2-ply will knit up with more of a tweed-effect. In yarn state, I prefer the 3-ply. It makes a rounder loftier yarn. The 3 ply is 8 wraps per inch.
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Autumn Leaves
Dyed grey roving*. This was a bitch to spin as the grey wool felted somewhat in the dyeing process and I had to pull and prod the roving to spin it into yarn. However, the 3-ply (navajo again) is really pretty and greater than the sum of it's parts. Yield: 150 yards at 9 wraps per inch.
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The Virtues of the Navajo Ply
What exactly is navajo plying? It is creating three-ply from one bobbin of a spun single. Also called chain plying. For all the prose that it would take to describe it, a picture is well worth a bazillion words. The Yarn Wench has released a short video about navajo-plying. You can also view a very short and sweet quick time video of navajo-ply at the Joy of Handspinning Web site.

* An aside: the before picture of the Autumn leaves colorway is lovely and golden, but not totally accurate, color-wise. The finished yarn is color corrected. I've recently started working with RAW photo files and do accurate color correction in the simple-post processing that I do with my images.

04 July 2007

Happy July 4 Weekend

Happy July 4 weekend America!

02 July 2007

Round 2: Handspun scarf Olympics

Ok, I'm not really going to win a gold medal at the handspun scarf olympics...but I do find myself with lots of beautiful handspun skeins and one-skein-of-yarn-don't-a-sweater make...so, I continue with the theme of the 1x1 ribbed scarf. In this case, the colored yarn is my handspun/hand dyed merino roving three (navajo) ply, and the grey is Lamb's Pride 85% wool/15% mohair single ply. The commercial yarn makes it a bit less soft than if I had had enough handspun merino to knit the whole thing...but the diameter of the commercial yarn was right and the finished product is really pretty. Over time it will probably "halo" a bit due to the 7.5% of mohair in the scarf. 

Here are the stats 
Yardage: 1 skein Lamb's Pride; 1 skein homespun (about 190 yards each skein)
Needles: US 6
Pattern: CO 29, Knit 1 row 
Row 1:K1,P1 to end, color A
Row 2: Slip 1st stitch purlwise, K1, P1  with color A,to next-to-last-stitch, slip last stitch purlwise
Using the 2nd yarn, repeat row 1 and 2, using color B
Repeat  Rows 1 and 2, with both yarns until done (but, you'll add 1 more row)
Knit 1 row.
Cast Off using Elizabeth Zimmermann's sewn cast off.

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Meanwhile, beyond the fiber universe – yesterday Carol and I took a hike at Wallace Falls in Washington. Very pretty pictures here.

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