Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Rumple Stiltskin in progesss

Got some fibery photos for you today. The mamas I work with at Knitteds & Fitteds have been hollering for them, Julie-Ann from the Material Whirled list is curious, too. So here they are. The colors are not quite as accurate as I generally like, but it's been raining & dreary here for days and my little point and shoot digital doesn't deal with that so well.

First off, the above picture is of my lovely brood of spinning wheels. The pretty one is an original Jensen, Tina II. I handfinished her with cherry stain (on cherry wood) with a light tung oil protective layer. I've had her since I was a Sophmore in highschool. (Now you all should be busily trying to figure out how old I am. I'll give you hint, I'm probably not nearly as old as I ought to be for having 3 children....or at least I think so. Oh, andI got married the week after I graduated college with my bachelor's degree, and had all 3 kids after.)

The Tina II as of yet is un-named. She really isn't a "Tina" but I am at a loss for what her real name should be. Something classy but sassy like Lola.....I can never decide. Maybe Lola is too 40's-pin-up-girl-esque? Then of course the bulky monstrosity is Rumple Stiltskin. He had a name instantly. I just knew he was a Rumple. This is slightly disturbing, becuase when it comes to children, Mr. N and I can agree on a bazillion girls' names and can't come up for anything decent when it comes to male children. If the Twinkle Twins had been two boys, one of them would not have had a name. Good thing they both popped out girls. Ah, but I digress.

Here is my newest creation: Melted Crayon Box. This was spun on the Rumple this weekend, from hand-dyed Blue Faced Leicester roving. I purchased it from Winderwood Farm on ebay for a very nice price. It's lovely. I love BFL to pieces. Now the interesting thing about this roving, is that despite the look of the finished yarn, the roving was dyed with only primary red, yellow and blue. I random dyed it, by wetting out the fiber, and plunking it (carefully and evenly) in my large dyeing pot. Then I heated it and poured the dye on in 3 wide stripes, minimizing the amount of dye overlap. So basically I had a radnom dyed skien of the primary colors. Then I spun it in a kind of modified long draw, to get lots of color mixing. The result is a rainbow. It was fun to watch it spin up. It is a plain-jane, worsted weight two ply. I wound it into a center pull ball and plied it together from the same single. The skein is just over 3 oz. The colors are a bit muted in places because my roving stack in the pot was a bit thick, so some parts were undyed. Next time, I'll dye it in 2oz sections instead to avoid white space.

Then this last pic is of another yarn I have going on the Tina. It's current name is Working Girl Confusion. It is of course worsted weight, because she has such a small orifice. Spun up out of black, white, grey, camel and medium blue Brown Sheep mill ends. They're all working wear colors. Hence the name. Coils, and nubs here. Lots of color changes because the mill ends I have are rather small. Should knit up into a stripey pattern.

Lastly, this is my first true bulky yarn. Still in progress on the wheel. I really haven't gotten very far with it. It's a candy stripe with black sequin nubs and also some grey wool/gold angelina hand blended nubs. The roving is from an Iowa farm. It's pretty much pencil drafted roving, which I hand dyed in very small batches yesterday and Sunday night. (As in small wads in my 2 cup glass dyeing measures.) I'm having fun with it and learning a lot. It's nice to be able to actually do these techniques. I've had the Plucky Fluff book for about 2 months, but most of the things I couldn't do because Tina is just too petite.

You all should go visit Abi at High Praire Fibers. She has lovely wool and does cool dyeing! She;s so sweet & nice to work with, too. This is her natural Ile De France/ Dorset cross. It's carded and has a foamy kind of texture to it. A nice change from the commercial combed rovings. It does compact as you spin it, but still retains the carded wool characteristics. Very easy to spin up. Her prices are excellant, too.

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