Voted Off the Island

My journey into spinning has been a lot like how I learned to knit. I started off with a bit of help and then I am largely learning by taking chances, pushing myself, trial and error, and a fair bit of dumb luck. For the most part, I let my instincts guide me and when I am really stumped I ask for advice from my contacts who are more experienced than I. I am so lucky in that they are always happy to help. Sometimes, however, I discovered that I am doing something in a… unique way.

One such discovery came about when I started to write about the spinning and finishing of the custom spin I’ve been working on. If you’ll remember, I divided up the fiber and organized them into a a ton of little fauxlags.

20131102-094314.jpgThis is just a few bits of the 4oz braid. Now I knew that most people spin these in a woolen fashion.

spinning process2Yeah. I don’t.

I have been spinning my fauxlags up using my short forward draw. The short forward draw comes naturally to me so I haven’t really worked on perfecting any aspect of my long draw yet. Truth be told, the long draw kind of terrifies me. I will work on it someday, but for now I’m the one spinning fauxlags with a short forward draw. Now granted my googling skills aren’t all that great, but I wasn’t able to find reference to anyone else out there spinning fauxlags with a short forward draw. So, there’s a fairly good chance this is some huge spinning faux pas that I was unaware of and I may get voted off the island for doing it. Honestly though, I really like how the fauxlags blend colors. I haven’t had any issues working with the fauxlags in this manner — I just follow the wool across and around the fauxlag and I get a really lovely worsted yarn. Which I love to Navajo-ply into a beautiful, round 3-ply yarn.

magnolia gloryWhat do you think?

magnolia side detailI’m voting for ‘not too bad.’

magnolia close upEven if I get voted off the island.

magnolia finishedThe result is about 430yards of a 3-ply light fingering weight yarn. Remember, this is a blend of 75% Organic Polwarth & 25% Silk from Cloudlover Yarn & Fiber. It is a soft, drapey mauve & green with accents of gold. I just think the yarn turned out pretty lovely. In fact, I think this skein might just be worth getting voted off the island. The real judgement, though, will come next week when it is hand delivered to its new owner. I have a sneaking suspicion she won’t mind if I’m doing it wrong either.

20 responses to “Voted Off the Island

  1. I LOVE this! I’ve been spinning for only a few weeks, so all the “rules” are new to me. If this skein in “wrong,” I’ll leave the island without a vote! :))

  2. Are you getting yarn you like? Then you are doing it correctly.

    Also-I went recently to 2 days of classes with Jacey Boggs. The first one was drafting techniques. I learned I do a “point of contact long draw” and I learned this intuitively, I’ve been doing it for years now. I think our spinning changes over time. Don’t be afraid of long draw, but don’t think it needs to look like this dramatic backward pull either.

    • 🙂 You are my hero.

      I just got my first issue of PLY yesterday, so the fact that you had class with Jacey Boggs is amazing to me! I discovered that I naturally spin across the top. I didn’t even know it was a thing! I have some video resources that I really need to start tapping until I can get my butt in some classes. Maybe 2014 will be the year I tackle the long draw…

      • This is one of those times when I wish we lived closer to each other. I think all I’d have to do was show you what we learned, and you’d be doing it in no time. If you ever get a chance….taking her class was well worth it.

      • Wouldn’t *that* be nice?! I will keep my eyes peeled for any local to me events. In the mean time, I just ordered a subscription the PLY. They had some very good step-by-step techniques in it this time, so hopefully I’ll pick up some new tricks. Maybe she’ll write about the long draw!

  3. Lovely to see the fauxlags all grown up as yarn 😀 Very pretty. My default draw is a sort of ‘double draw’. I don’t even know if that’s the correct description or not but I like doing it so what the hey!

      • Is that what a combination draw is then? I learn something new every day 🙂 Maybe it’s because I card a lot of my fibers, so I guess that would make them a little disorganized even when I card it straight so therefore needing that little bit extra drafting to sort it out!

      • As I understand it, a combination short draw is when you use a combination of drawing fibers out with your forward hand and drawing backwards with you ‘back’ hand. I literally looked it up for this project though, so I could be wrong.

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