In all her glory

Sometimes projects take a long time. Over the weekend I finished my latest handspun yarn which from my best estimate I started in January (I don’t have the exact date recorded, of course). When I plied the last bit and then wound it onto my kniddy noddy, I could hardly believe that I had finished. I am generally still quite slow with my wheel & I spun all 8oz of this fiber at a lace weight. Since I have been taking photos of my progress over these last four months, I thought it would be fun to take you on a little time lapse photo journey through the making of this yarn. For those who follow this blog the photos will be familiar, but I think it’ll be neat to see them all lined up. Just so you know where I was going with this spinning, this fiber was a gradient that went from a deep blue to a bright orange. My hope was to spin a sport weight yarn that would be Navajo plied to preserve the color shifts. Let’s see how I did, shall we?

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January 12, 2013

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January 13, 2013

And then a   l o n g   hiatus….

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May 2, 2013

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May 2, 2013

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May 7, 2013

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Spinning away on May 11, 2013

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My spinning buddy always at his post — seriously, how is this comfortable?

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May 11, 2013

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May 15, 2013 — It looks like gold!

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May 16, 2013 — All three bobbins resting before plying.

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May 17, 2013 — Let the plying begin!

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Is this guy for real?

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May 21, 2013 — Plying complete — time to see how it turned out.

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In a word: perfect. Not technically perfect, but it is almost exactly what I was shooting for.

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I just love the little partial rainbow.

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There she is. In all her glory.

I am absolutely smitten.

Now, the colors are gorgeous and I love them, let’s just get that statement out of the way. I did aim a little light on the weight, however, and the final yarn is more of a fingering weight than the sport I was shooting for. The yardage, well, I can barely believe it: about 700yards! Honestly, I could kind of care less about the misfire on the weight because I really just love this yarn. I just have to find a different pattern for it now!

I do have to thank my fellow blogger, Kara, who writes Suzy Sells Sea Shells. I ‘met’ Kara when she joined the Merry KAL and shortly after I started following her blog. She is a prolific & talented spinner who has proven over the last few months to be not only an inspiration to me as a spinner, but also an invaluable resource. I am beyond thankful for her input & advice. Just a week or so ago I commented on one of her posts because her Navajo plying looked so amazing. It really was gorgeous, see here for yourself. I mentioned how nervous I was to start plying my own project because my experience with Navajo plying was good, but not great. She sent me a link to Sarah Anderson demonstrating Navajo plying and it completely changed my spinning life. I found the results almost instant after watching this — the technique was suddenly relaxing and enjoyable instead of terrifying and not very controlled. Kara officially became one of my heroes.

With the success of the plying under my belt, I had one last thing to fear with this project. My hands were literally blue after spinning & plying the blue parts of this wool. I was very concerned that after all this work to maintain the gradient colors that the dye would run turning my rich oranges into a weird green or some other disaster. I once again asked Kara & she gave me a couple bits of advice to help make sure the dye was set. I washed it this morning and it is still as perfect as it was off the kniddy noddy. Phew. (Kara, I totally owe you one!)

So there you have it, the story of this spinning adventure. Want to see it again?20130521-152842.jpgCan you tell I kind of like it? Yeah, I kind of do.

Now, do you have any ideas for what to knit with 700yds of this fingering weight gradient beauty? I am taking suggestions!

18 responses to “In all her glory

  1. You are too kind! I absolutely love the yarn, and 8 oz is a LOT to spin! It does need a perfect pattern. Are you looking for something lacy or something that will just show off the handspun and color?

    • Just giving credit where credit is due. 🙂

      It took a long time, but I can honestly say I really didn’t mind. And I’m excited to have a lot to knit with. I am pretty much open to any ideas. – my main thing is that i’d like to use as much of the yardage as possible so i get to use the full range of color.

      • That is a pretty lovely idea – I hadn’t seen that pattern yet. I’m adding it to the short list of ideas! Yay! (I was unsure at first, but I am kind of falling in love with it!)

      • I am working on one out of handspun right now. I wish I’d cast on fewer stitches, as I only have 700 yards. I am adding some non stockinette stuff to it as well because BORING! However, I think the finished object is awfully elegant looking.

  2. I’m so glad you are smitten, and so am I ! That is a terrific job you did… really … laceweight??? Bravo ! I love the photo gallery, and especially seeing your company curled up at your feet. Thank you !

    • The singles were laceweight. The three-ply (Navajo ply) is more of a light fingering/fingering weight. I was a little surprised myself, but now I understand why it took so long!

      And seriously, I love the dog, but the curling up at my feet when I spin is by far the most endearing thing he does. He melted my heart every single time!

  3. Yes it’s lovely. I really enjoyed the video on Navajo plying. I will have to watch it over to get the loop making bit though.

    • That video is so well done I can hardly believe it. It helped me manage the technique so much! When she said it would be relaxing I thought she was certainly kidding. Apparently not!

      • hee hee I thought the same. It looked like a version of cat’s cradle! I think I understand it, but I’m still not sure.

      • I think most things make more sense in action than just in theory while watching. If any video can help organize Navajo plying, this one can!

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