A New Year’s Eve party is happening at our church only 4 blocks away. This is the first year in many that I’m not up there making music, putting puzzles together, talking, eating and laughing with friends. Emotions and obligations try to tug me up the hill but I resist, preferring instead to write a final post for 2010, a year of not posting as much as I had wanted. I’m not in the mood for noise and being “on” with a large group of people of all ages. Besides, there were two projects I had wanted to finish this evening. One has been accomplished, and the Cat’s Paw scarf is very close but it’s completion will wait until tomorrow; I’m very tired and will head for bed as soon as I’ve updated. (Depending on how noisy it is – already people are shooting firecrackers and guns. Yep, we live in an area with avid hunters.)
Combined with one single of Alpaca spun on my Louet Victoria. ( I was chomping at the bit to get the alpaca spun so I could ply them.)
I’d been warned to spin the alpaca as loosely as possible, a new challenge which took some practice but overall I was happy with the look and feel, other than that it was thicker than the mohair singles. Until. It keep drifting apart as I plyed it with a Mohair single. Undaunted I ran the alpaca through the Victoria again adding a bit more twist.
Wanting one large skein of yarn I used my Navajo spindle for plying. After plying a few grams I was dismayed to see that the alpaca was overwhelming the mohair. Gritting my teeth at the thought of losing half the yardage by three-plying I sampled away and found that 3 ply was the way to go. Gamely I uniformly wound the three singles together into a big ball with my nostepinne, moved the ball onto a simple plying board, for ease of off-winding, and began plying Wednesday evening.
Tonight the plying was finished and the yarn measured on a niddy-noddy.
Total yardage, before setting twist, is approximately 330. After it’s washed and dried I will weigh it for final results.
I’d originally split the Kid Mohair roving in half along the width hoping to spin it evenly even that the colors would match up in the end two-ply results. But there were such beautiful color changes that I didn’t want to risk them muddying in the plying process if my spinning wasn’t uniform enough to keep the colors in each single together. In order to preserve the colors it was suggested to instead ply them as one single against one grey alpaca single. Which would have worked if I’d spun the alpaca as thin or thinner than the mohair but in spinning it looser it was bigger. Winding the three together into the ball revealed that I could have 2-plyed the two mohair singles together for the colors did come out very evenly in the end. By the time I’d realized the colors were matching very nicely throughout I didn’t have the heart to unwind the big ball and start that process again.
The good news is there’s approximately 65 grams / 2 ounces of alpaca singles left over for something else.
Yesterday Ed and I went up to Portland to buy wood then over to the Pendleton Woolen Mill outlet store in SE Portland/Milwaukee to buy a new blanket for our bed as our anniversary gift. In the five years since I’d been there the store moved from the basement upstairs into what used to house the Portland mill & weaving room for their fabrics. We were told the looms were all moved to their weaving mill in Washington when the constant motion from the looms was destroying the structural integrity of the old building. (Blankets and rugs are still woven in Pendleton, OR). It’s been refurbished into a bright, welcoming store with a museum tucked into a back room. Ed and I spent well over an hour looking at blankets, fondling fabrics on bolts and hanging from huge rollers, and looking at the tapestry collection in the museum. I longingly looked over the cones of weaving yarns and managed to put blinders on when walking past the large bins of selvage pieces but came away determined to weave a chunk of what I have before buying anymore.
Fueled with enthusiasm from wool fumes I came home and set about calculating, measuring and sleying the reed with warp for 3 throw rugs. 🙂 It feels so good to once again have a work in progress on the loom. Just in time to start the new year.
Today Valerie wrote of letting her stash be sufficient for her fiber needs in this coming year with the word sufficient as a key word. It is a very good word! One my mother loved, and lived by. Her favorite verse that she clung to in hard and uncertain times was “My grace is sufficient for you…” 2 Corinthians 12:9 (New Testament) closely followed by “And God is able to make all grace abound to you, that always having all sufficiency is everything, you may have an abundance for every good deed.” 2 Corinthians 9:8 Isn’t that a lovely assurance to carry into this New Year!