Saturday, June 1, 2013

It's Camp Loopy Time!

I love Camp Loopy. Yes, I realize it's just a ploy to get me to buy wool yarn in the summer, but it's a fun ploy and there are prizes. Our first project kicks off on June 1st.

Because knitting something in a month is not hard enough, I decided to up the ante this month by spinning the wool for the yarn. The Loopy Ewe now sells wool roving, so using it spin will qualify me in the challenge.

This is the Purple Mustang colorway of Lorna's Laces wool roving top. Top means that the fibers have been combed out nicely for spinning, ready to go. This one wasn't. It was kind of matted.

I've been wanting to do a shawl with color gradations, so I knew that I would be combing it out anyway, so on I went.

 The first step was to tear the roving apart to separate the different values. Working light to dark, the hunks of roving were sorted into individual stacks of shades of purple.

From there, each hank was combed, using nearly lethal wool combs. The tines are very, very sharp, and it took just a couple of pokes for me to come to respect the tools.

The roving includes both red purple and blue purple, making it a bit of a challenge to sort out the values. The blue purples just looked darker. To solve the problem, I used my camera, set to black & white, to rearrange the combed blobs in value order. See how the colorless photo helps to block out the confusing color. I use this trick with my applique as well, when a subtle value shift is important.

I want to make a lace weight, or light fingering weight yarn. This is pretty fine yarn, used for knitting shawls and socks. Ultimately the yarn will be two ply, so I separated the value gradations in two.

Finally ready for spinning, the fluffs of wool have been stacked up in a basket, near at hand for spinning.

I've finished spinning the first run of fiber, and am about half way on the second. I'm still undecided on whether I will spin the whole lot as a two ply for a shawl, or go for a three ply and make a pair of socks. We shall see.

Knitting for the first project starts on June 1st. The Loopy Ewe gave me permission to start early on the spinning, since it's neither casting on or knitting. So hopefully, by the time you are reading this, I will be done with the spinning and ready to knit.

1 comment:

  1. I'd go for a shawl as it would be a shame to hide such a lovely color in a pair of shoes.