Monday, October 26, 2009

Desert colours

Some time ago, I was able to get some nice Corridale rovings. You may have read about my troubles in dyeing it. That has now been done, but there is still more roving that I will dye later.

I have been spinning up some of it, and I really like the way it is coming out. Some of the sections are quite short in the roving, but because I am spinning so fine (of course), I can get good separation of colours. There is a lot of blending as well, and it's really exciting to see what shade I am going to get next. It's all really fun!
Now comes the time to ply. I am having some problems here with deciding what to do. It is fine, so I was thinking I may have to do a 3-ply. I was only hoping to do a 2-ply, but I see some difficulties already.

I like the way the colours show up now, in the singles. But when I ply, I am going to get that barber-pole effect, which I definitely do not like! I've seen many others post pics in their blogs of the barber poles they have created, and everyone says how wonderful the colours look -- and they clearly are not. But that is only my opinion, so I will keep it to myself.
I have thought about using the major rusty shade that is more prevalent and using that as a single with which I can ply these other colours. I was able to separate most of that shade and spin up a couple cops. I am hoping that will sort of tie it all together, so it appears to be one cohesive whole. But I will be getting some barber poling (is that a word?) when I come to the pale shades or the green. And that may be alright too.

I have also thought of doing some Navajo plying as a way to preserve some of the distinct colouring. That certainly would do it, and I would have a lot more control of how the colours blend together. It also means I am not going to get as much yardage this way, and that may be alright too.

Really, I liked the colours as they are in the roving. I guess I should dye the finished yarn instead, and then I won't have to worry about any barber pole happening then! Hm....

Monday, October 12, 2009

Thanksgiving dyeing

So this is the Thanskgiving long weekend around here, and I don't have to go to work! In fact, I don't have to do anything at all. But I do have some roving that has been waiting to be dyed, so today is as good a day as any other.

This is some undyed Corriedale pencil roving that I have. I haven't played around with any dyes for a long time, so it was good to get back into it. I had to dig out my pots and dyes... ran out and got some Kool-Aid and food colouring too. Just to play around a bit, you know.

But there is a problem. Here is the undyed roving:

And here is the roving after I dyed it. I got some pretty good colours; I might want to change it just a bit, the next time. But I don't quite like the way it has come out -- the roving, I mean.
When it was undyed, it was nice and fluffy and easy to draft. But when it was wet-processed, it seems to have flattened out to almost nothing. I would almost swear there isn't as much fibres as there was before! I did open up some roving, fluffed it up, and I really don't think there is as much wool as there was! Could some of it wash away? I don't get it. I didn't weigh it after, but it just doesn't seem as if there is all the roving that I started with. Oh, well. I did spin some of it already on the spindle, but this sure does puzzle me.

I wish all of you a Happy Thanksgiving, wherever you may be. There is much to be thankful for, despite my complaining, and we need to keep that in mind. I had a good day, and I wish the same for all of you.

Thursday, October 08, 2009

It's here!

Today, at about 1 pm local time, it arrived. I knew it had to come, and I kept denying it was going to be this soon. But eventually I have to admit that I can't keep it away, and I have to deal with it.

I am having an extremely difficult time handling this change. It happens every year at about this time, and I've been around for a long time so you would think I would know what to do next. I don't. I will never get used to it, no matter how many of these I go through. The trouble here is that I have to suffer through it several times a year -- it's not a one-time-only thing!

But rather than bemoan about how hard it is, let me just show you a pic, and leave it at that. The less said the better -- at least for now, while it is still fresh and raw and painful.

In the meantime, I've made this. It was for the Longest Llama Scarf project, which was at the UN this week. Obviously, mine didn't make it there! I have it sitting here with me, not knowing what to do with it. The yarn was donated to me to make a scarf, which I did. I was to return it to the appropriate people so that it could all be sent to join all the rest. Didn't make it. Oh, well.

It's a 2/2 rib, but with a twist. It's rather simple, and I don't know if I've seen it in any pattern book or not, and I can't really explain it. I called it the Wandering Rib, or the Twisted Drunken Rib. Maybe twisted rib. It was rather fun to do, and most difficult to explain! But I really enjoyed working with the yarn. It has a gorgeous feeling, and now that it is finished, the weight is something that can only be experienced. It's much like silk in the drape. I haven't worn it yet, but I think I may one day this week, seeing the present conditions.