Thursday, April 3, 2008

True Plies: Spinning out of control

True Plies: Fleece Artist Blue-faced Leicester Roving

I have to admit it. I have a problem. A big one. And working at this store ain't helping me with it.The culprit this week?

Handmaiden & Fleece Artist of Nova Scotia. In the past month we have received so much merchandise from them, we've had to create a section of the store I'm calling Little Canada.

(shown to the left)

To make matters worse, a couple weeks ago we received an enormous box of hand-painted roving. Seriously, when I say "enormous", I mean it. I could have shipped myself (and a friend) to Jamaica in that thing (actually...hmm, not a bad thought).

I managed to avoid the wicked, wicked beguiling ways of the roving until The Blogger set up a spinning display with a basket of it, and ... well, I fell off of the wagon. Two nights ago I brought home 100g of their BFL roving in the colorway "Peacock". The bronze and turquoise together called to me. So I pulled out my wheel, spun up some very fine singles, and then Navajo-plied the singles into a 3-ply/ worsted weight yarn:

Fleece Artist BFL handspun

My review of it? Oh, it's beautiful. Not just to ogle and pet, but to spin as well. I have to admit that I have had some pretty traumatic experiences with hand-dyed wool roving. Inexperienced dyers can accidentally felt the roving by using water that's too hot or agitating the wool as it's soaking up the dyes - which turns perfectly beautiful wool roving into rope.

Not this stuff. It was still soft and fluffy and didn't resemble hand-dyed rope at all. The roving easy pulled apart in slivers and was even easier to draft. So easy, in fact, that I managed to shock myself with how fine the single-ply yarn was. Navajo-plying it made the yarn heavier and self-striping. If I had 2-plied the yarn, it would have been a fingering weight yarn in the end. And the colors would have misched more.

All in all, I'm exceedingly pleased with it. And $16.50 for 100g of hand-painted, handspun, yarn ain't bad. Not by a long shot. Now all I have to do is knit it, once I manage to beat my coworkers away from the skein with a stick or something...

(Next time? Fleece Artist's Casbah.)

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