Friday, August 15, 2014

It's a Kind of Magic

And I am completely enchanted by it. (Also, I now have that song by Queen stuck in my head. But I guess that's my own fault, huh?)

Here's what's been going on:

First I took something resembling this (except it was a weird dark purple color that Little Miss loves)

And then, I grabbed this (which has been sitting around here in a box for years and I'm really glad I grabbed it- finally- because, wow)

And finally, I threw in a little of this

which you got a glimpse of a while back (buried underneath the other book). Then I added a dash of youtube. The lady who wrote that book has a couple of very helpful videos that demonstrate what she was trying to explain in her book.

And now, several days later- Presto change-o! Like magic!

I MADE YARN!! (Sorry for yelling. I couldn't help it. I'll try to get a grip. Might take a few days, though. I nearly drove my sweetie crazy last night, what with all the dancing around and giggling to myself...) I'm so unreasonably thrilled about that. It's just the neatest thing.

First, I spun the roving into a single ply yarn. (This is the purple, shown very close to actual color, thanks to my sweetie, who is much, much better with the camera than I am.) It basically sucks, as far as yarn goes. It's very overspun (because she said it was better to have too much than too little, and I took her at her word). It has thick and thin spots hidden in all the kinks. It is very far from perfect. But I love it anyway.

The book says that plying helps to even out yarns, so, of course, I plied. Here's my two-ply yarn on the spindle.

Plying was awesome. It's even more fun than the spinning, and so very much faster. It took hours and hours to spin the singles. Plying it all took less than an hour total. It's still a very thick-and-thin yarn, but the plying does seem to have helped it.

Then I had to get it off the spindle. I used my crappy, cheap, in-need-of-an-upgrade swift, which worked fine. I guess. I've never wound yarn up on it before, only used it to hold yarn while I wind it up into balls. It seemed a little bit awkward. I have a niddy-noddy somewhere in the mail. It should be here in a few days, and then I hope to make this skein look a little better. I think it will at least be easier than using the swift.

 And finally, a quick bath. This is supposed to set the twist and make it real yarn forever and always.

And now, the hard part. Patiently waiting for it to dry. That patience thing isn't working out so well for me. (As usual.) Luckily, I have things to distract me. And I'm cheating.

The yarn has to hang to dry. I left it un-weighted this first time, just to see what it turned out like. But, when I woke up this morning and found out that it was still wet, well...

I had to move it. Now it is hanging right under my ceiling fan (in the only room of the house where I can be reasonably sure no one will mess with it too much), which is going full speed. Hopefully, it will be dry pretty soon and I can pet it and maybe get a guess as to how much of it there is... I'm not sure if I plan to do anything with it for now. It might just sit around for a few months (or years) so I can occasionally measure my new yarns against it to see if I'm getting any better.

My brand new, very-first-ever, made-it-myself yarn is still kinky and overspun (which I'll probably try to improve on the next go), but it is bouncy and springy and I think it isn't a completely terrible first effort. (I've seen professional yarns for sale that are very similar.) I'm pretty happy with it, and I can't wait to try it again. This is most likely going to make me want a spinning wheel even more than ever, but for now, I just want a few more spindles and some more roving. (My box of fun should be here in just a few days with the roving. Yay!)

I wonder if I can talk my husband into getting me a couple of those sweet little miniature sheep now?  Hmm...  ;)

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