Saturday, July 15, 2006

Lots of New Fibers!

My first try at spinning was at a friend's house last year in late summer. It was there that I met her mother, Mrs. B., who is a spinning and weaving instructor. Mrs. B. kindly asked if I'd like to try out her Schacht Matchless wheel. I immediately accepted the offer as I've always wanted to learn how those neat wheely-machines worked. In retrospect, my first yarn was weird looking: lumpy and uneven, with skinny and thick pieces all over. But I still loved it and boy, was I excited about it. It had a very authentic, homegrown feeling to it. I made a tiny baby hat with this yarn, which, when I find out where it is, I will post it here. Later, she lent me one of her wheels indefinitely until I either got sick of spinning or fell in love with it. Of course the outcome was the latter one and never has there been a dull moment in spinning for me. Mrs. B. has not only been my spinning teacher but also a dear friend. She's one of the kindest people I know. And here's one example (of many, many, many) of her kindness and generosity. When I got sick with shingles, Mrs. B. was at the Convergence conference in Grand Rapids, MI. There, she got me a ton of beautiful fibers to play with.

50:50 Merino:Tussah Silk fleece and 70:30 Lambswool:Alpaca fleece from Ursula's Alcove, 50:50 Tussah Silk:baby Camel Down top and 80:20 black Alpaca:Bombyx mori Silk top from Shadeyside Farm, 50:50 Merino:Tencel top in Emerald Forest and Obscure Rainbow by Bonkers, black Alpaca:Silk top, and Alpaca top in grey, brown and beige from Alpaca with a Twist.

The only condition upon receiving this wonderful gift was that I spin half of it for her--which is a most welcomed pleasure. As I said before, I love to spin, and spinning for Mrs. B. is like a learning experience and honor all at once. I am very excited! All these fibers are incredibly soft, especially the alpaca tops. I am now trying to decide what weight yarn and whether to spin singles or 2-ply for the Merino:Tencel blended top. I love those colors!

Also, believe it or not, the only drop spindle I've ever used was a CD-spindle. So Mrs. B let me try out her new Golding Ring Spindle. It was amazing! It keeps on spinning and nice! She lent me a Jonathan Bosworth spindle to play with for now. It's also very nice but I still prefer the Golding spindle, which has now been added to my wishlist.

With all these new and wonderful goodies around me I almost forgot to mention something I had forgotten to write up in last week's entry: the material I used for the placemats were linen for the warp and cotton for the weft. Here's a picture of the cut out mats with the edges tucked in and pressed, but not yet sewn (needed to go buy new heavy-duty sewing needles for my machine!).


Anonymous Monica said...

What a wonderful gift! She's such an enabler, in the best way. :)

7/21/2006 11:40 AM  

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