Sunday, September 14, 2008

Worth It

The yarn is done. I'm pretty sure that it took me at least a month to spin, if not more, but the yarn I got is exactly what I wanted. So let's review:

It started out as approximately 8.5 ounces of Crown Mountain Farms superwash merino, colorway San Francisco. The fiber was incredibly soft and incredibly well prepared. I did nothing before I started to spin but split it roughly into thirds. No fluffing or predrafting was required, and it drafted beautifully at the wheel. I don't think I noticed any substantial VM and there was a minimal number of nepps.

Although I spun the singles on my regular head/bobbins, I wanted to get all of the plied yarn in one skein; considering my singles nearly filled up each bobbin on their own, there was no way I was going to get a three ply into one skein without using my jumbo plying head. The jumbo head is something I use very rarely, because it's much more difficult to treadle. In this case, however, there really wasn't an alternative for the results I wanted, so I made do, getting a good workout at first, and I discovered that it got much easier to treadle as the bobbin filled up.

And fill up it did! Here's what it looked like when I finished the last of the plying yesterday morning (as you can tell, we didn't have much in the way of sunshine yesterday, hence the flash photo).

I washed and thwacked the resulting skein yesterday afternoon, and although it's still a little damp, I couldn't resist taking it outside for a photo shoot.

I'm going to wait until it's completely dry before I measure WPI (using my handy new tool that came in the Knit Picks box), but I'm pretty confident it's in the fingering weight range.

I was really curious to see how this would turn out, because I didn't do any sort of planning in terms of colors or striping. As it turned out, there were some areas where shades or one color or another matched up, so I'm guessing I'll get some sort of subtle striping effect when I knit this up.

Most exciting to me is the yardage. My estimate, even accounting for shrinkage in the finishing process, is that I have about 625 yards. That's probably enough to get a pair of knee socks out of this one skein!

I had a little bit of leftover singles on two of the bobbins, but it really wasn't enough to try to wind some off onto the third bobbin and try to continue the three ply. I tried Navajo plying from the bobbin that had more on it, but the singles kept breaking, so I gave up and wound the singles around a hardback book and made miniskeins to finish.

These may be too delicate to actually knit, but they're a good addition to my collection of miniskeins to squish.

Finally, before I started on my next batch of fiber, I spun a small amount of yarn as a surprise for Jen. This is natural/undyed BFL mix with some combed Stella hair. Doesn't it have a lovely halo?


  1. SOOOOOO pretty! San Francisco is one of my faves! :)

  2. wow--that is gorgeous yarn! you must be really proud.

    but please to define "thwacking."

  3. Ooh, knee socks!

  4. Ooohh ... the Crown Mountain Farms is just so beautiful. I can't wait to see it in person!

    And ... ha on the Stella yarn! :)

  5. Anonymous2:36 PM

    You know I had trouble treadling my Lendrum with the jumbo head on until I realized there was another one of those plastic bands included that was bigger and made it WAY easier. It was a little tricky getting it on, but I found some instructions on Ravelry.

  6. Purty! Knee socks would be cute.

    I love the halo on the last one. It's similar to some Ironstone I'm about to knit up.