Posts in Category: things I spin

mid-tour update

This is turning into such a spinning blog! I’ve been keeping up with my daily spinning for the Tour, but over this period I usually try to spin at least 30 minutes a day, instead of just spinning daily. I can only sustain a pace like that for a few weeks – I like working on too many other things to use all of my creative time for my wheel – but when so many other people are spinning the same amount, it’s fun to join in!

TDF Day 7

TDF Day 7

I spent a few days working on this braid of BFL, in “Eureka,” from the Into The Whirled club. I had high hopes to spin this as a 3-ply and end up with a lovely, barberpoled fingering-weight yarn with lots of yardage.

I ended up with 200yd of DK weight, instead. While not exactly what I wanted, it is pretty, and I think will make a lovely pair of mittens, or part of a sweater.

Into The Whirled

The other nice thing about ‘failing’ a little at my “Eureka” braid, is that it set me up really nicely to spin my next braid. This is the current spin on my wheel – “Captain Tightpants,” which I have been saving in my stash for about a year, now. It’s also BFL from Into The Whirled. Because I’d just finished spinning a yarn that was the wrong weight, I was able to correct and spin singles that were much, much finer.


This braid is taking much longer to spin, but I feel more hopeful that the finished yarn will turn out to be the weight I’m hoping for.

spinning & tour de fleece

TDF Day 4

I wanted to talk about spinning, today, since that’s been a big part of what I’ve been making this year. (Also, my new spinning wheel corner gets really good afternoon light, and I have been enjoying how easy it is to take Super Dramatic Wheel Shots like this.)

I’ve been participating in spinning challenges over Ravelry – 15 lbs in 2015 (which – I am not spinning that much, but they have a sub-challenge to spin 7.5lbs of fiber, and I’m trying for that), the Mega SAL, and now the Tour de Fleece. All of these have been really great for seeing other spinners’ work, which I find really inspiring and motivating.

I’ve been keeping up with my practice of spinning every day-ish* for the past year and a half, now, and that’s been helping a lot with making me a spinner who can be more consistent, and slowly I’m learning how to spin finer yarn when I want to.

I’m still not as skilled at controlling what I spin as I’d like to be. I do a lot of thinking that I’m going to get a certain weight of yarn, and often I end up spinning one weight heavier than I think I’m going to. But I’m getting better at that, and I’m still succeeding at making a lot of nice yarns – it’s just a little harder to figure out what to do with them when I can’t reliably spin to an intended purpose.

I spun my first ‘combination’ yarn, plying two separate 4-oz colourways together.

ITW 'Impossible Pyjamas'

(Ravelry info here. Into The Whirled “Inconceivable” and “Cat’s Pyjamas” on 75/25 Polwarth/Silk.)

And then I spun another. This was MegaSAL fiber, and my first time spinning targhee. This consumed a lot of my May spinning time, as I started with two 6-oz braids. I have a lot of this, and am going to have to figure out a good plan for knitting it, soon.

MegaSAL Handspun

(Ravelry info here. Fat Cat Knits “Noble Dragon” and “Ankh Mopork” on Targhee.)

I spun some more Mega SAL fiber – this was my first time working with fiber from Nest Fiber Studios, which has been on my spinning bucket list for a while. I have another bag of a complimentary colourway to this one, and I’m hoping to spin it similarly so that I can use them together.

MegaSAL Nest

(Ravelry info here. Nest Fiber Studio “Maiden’s Wish” on Superwash Merino.)

I’ve also been spinning for the Tour de Fleece, and spun down some of my Indigodragonfly club stash into these skeins of worsted weight.

Indigodragonfly Club Falkland

(Ravelry info here. Indigodragonfly “Ostrichie Ostrich”/”D’ohne”/”Gaseous Clay” on Falkland.)

I’m starting to get into the rhythm of the Tour – I find I tend to spin a lot more per day for these two weeks, and some of my favourite yarns from 2014 were spun this time last year, so I’m sure I’ll have more to update about soon.

(*There are, obviously, some caveats. If I’m not in the same city as my wheel, I don’t spin. If I’m busy and I forget or can’t work spinning in, that’s not a failure, but I try to sit down for at least five minutes on the day I remember. It still works out to more days than one would think.)

life things and yarny things

Recently Added-23

Hello. It’s been a little while since I’ve had the time to write here, which is a shame. If you follow me on Twitter or Instagram, you’ll know that life has been pretty busy, lately, and it’s only recently that I’ve felt settled enough to get back to the blog.

The last time I posted was in the middle of May, and here’s what I’ve been up to since then:

1) Went on a trip: C and I visited Belgium, England and Scotland for two weeks, which was lovely. Everything edible was delicious, I picked up some choice knitting and sewing souvenirs, and we tasted a lot of really lovely Belgian beers, and fell in love with Scottish gin.

2) Packed everything: I’ve mentioned this before, but C is starting a new work/school program that required a huuuuuge cross-country move. Once we got back from our trip, we had two weeks to pack everything up and hand it over to the movers. This was really tough, partly because packing is the worst, but also because it involved a lot of saying goodbye to really special places and people.

3) Drove across the country: The next step in the moving process was bringing ourselves and our car and our cats to Calgary. We packed the cats up in the backseat (ask me about that, sometime. One of them (the one not in this post) was super not a fan of driving) and did the four-day car trip to our new apartment. Google tells me we travelled 4002km, which is 2487 miles.

4) Waited: the moving company gives a date range of when things will arrive, and it’s not always exactly the amount of time it takes to get from Location A to Location B. We spent a good week and a half living out of suitcases in our new apartment, waiting for the call from the moving company. There was a lot of IKEA furniture assembly in this period.

Our truck arrived last week, and now we are 90% unpacked and sleeping on a real bed again, which is a huge relief. My new job starts in a little while, and we’ve mostly figured out stuff like where to get coffee and groceries and comic books.

I made a lot of things through the past couple of months, as well. Knitting has always been what I do with my hands in times of stress, and I definitely needed it through parts of the last few months (oh god, that car trip). I started and finished a sweater, which I’m excited to talk about, and finished a pair of socks. I’ll get to the backlog in time, but for now, here are some photos of what I’ve been working on lately.



Bertie Botts socks