Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Spindle Club & Spinning from the Fold

Back in late August, I joined the Butterfly Girl Spindle & Fiber club to get my fix of spindles. For September, she sent me this lovely black & gold resin spindle, along with some very tasty roving (a whole 3.1 oz) of the colorway Japanese Maple.

It was 70% merino, 20% bamboo, 10% firestar (angelina). The colors are just *GORGEOUS* (and my favorite colors!).

Butterfly Girl Spindle & Japanese Maple roving

I just got around to trying to spin it (after finishing Nightsky project, I felt like I deserved a bit of different fun.

However, with the different types of fiber in the roving, I wasn't quite sure how to spin it. I broke the very HUGE carded batt/roving into small sections (lengthwise), and spun up the first one as I normally do (about 1/8ths of an ounce). The colors were getting *too* blended and muddied, and there wasn't any clear dilineation between them; not to mention the firestar was being blended only in one area.

So, I thought, why not spin from the fold? Abby Franquemont wrote a wonderful article on spinning from the fold and she has this to say:
you get different colour effects spinning from the fold than spinning from the end.... if you have a fiber which has multiple colours running the long way, spinning from the fold can let you control the sequence of those, and keep discrete colour changes so you don't end up with muddied colours.
and this:
in blends where you have really different fibers, or widely divergent staple lengths, you may find it easier to make sure you are keeping the blend blended as you spin.
Well, in this case, I have BOTH of those issues going. I haven't quite spun from the fold yet, but I like to think I'm doing okay spinning wise, despite only having done it for 3-4 months.

So, I took the next section of fiber and spun it from the fold. Viola! The colors were coming out more and the firestar/angelina was being blended a lot more into all of the yarn instead of just one section.

Currently, I'm very happy with the results. I've tried to spin straight bamboo and was very unhappy spinning it (too slick for me!) but blended with the merino makes it just absolutely love.

And the Butterfly Girl spindle SPINS LIKE A DREAM. It's super light (less than an ounce) and spins fast. I'm spinning a lovely heavier laceweight yarn with it. The colors definitely remind me of a Japanese Maple or a very colorful sari.

This is going to become a lovely shawl, probably a fan/feather, just to show off the various colors. I haven't picked out a pattern as of yet, I want to wait until I finish spinning more of it to see how the colors play it out.

I can't wait to see what this month's spindle / fibers are going to be!