Tuesday, February 26, 2008

A few minor odds and ends

I am coming to the conclusion that I am absolutely crap at taking close-up photographs. Viz:

Here is the soy/merino yarn as a halfway decent shot, but a dreadful colour reproduction.

soy/merino yarn

And here is a good colour but a terrible blurry shot.

soy/merino yarn

What I need to do is find the manual, round up a few fibrous things,and then find a spare few hours when I wouldn't feel (w)racked (just how do you spell that?) with guilt for not doing something else and work it through.

Yeah, right.

So, that's done. Apart from the corrie/silk combo that I am attempting to finish upstairs, I have been having a fun time on the charka. I love using it, and have got reasonably proficient. But because we have the cotton spinning workshop coming up, I felt that it behooved me to at least attempt to ply on the thing. H'mm. I googled. Some do, some don't. Not really too much help to be had. I have got Elaine Benfatto's dvd, but I can't find it - yet. Ahem.

OK, so I tried first of all using the integral lazy kate in the charka, and have to say that it was not an overwhelming success. Mainly because the high twist of the singles caused lots of little twiddles (love the technical term, eh?) that were not in all cases possible to work out. So, plan B was what a number of people do, to wind the three singles that I was attempting to ply together into one ball, and then to just "ply" that onto the charka. Singles kept breaking. I know why - my winding-on technique was not all that good at the beginning of the project - much better now, but where it had caught on itself at the end nearest the point, then breakage occurred. So, I can work on that some more. I gave up at that point to come to it fresher tomorrow.

I have to say, I really do feel that if charka spun yarn is to be plyed, then better done on a wheel or even a spindle. That might be nice and controllable. All these methods shall be tested at some point, no doubt.

However, all my forward planning regarding spinning projects has just flown right out of the window, as we learned yesterday that we have been accepted to teach at Summer School 2009. And not spindle spinning, but the "Spin to Knit" programme. this was pulled together from various one day workshops the DSM and I have taught together or severally, and we shall need a load of new samples not to mention the odd actual FO or two. So - plans to be drawn up, actions to be taken!

All very exciting. I started with an easy one, a worsted spun combed top to be knitted into socks. That needs to be done, and in the interim I can work out what else we need. Some stuff we do actually have, but it is looking a little tired after a few turns around the block. But it's all to the good. I find it helps me to get under the skin of the workshop/teaching process, so that when I come to actually do it, everything is up front in my mind. This becomes more and more useful the older I get, heh heh.

So, that's the latest news that's fit to print, pretty much.


spinningmaid said...

That is so exciting about the Summer School. Count me in!

Marie said...

I think your photos are just fine. I am the queen of burry and fuzzy. I am also certain it's the camera and not me. Laugh not!
Good and exciting news about teaching this summer. I bet you have a lot of ideas.