Thursday, August 16, 2007

I have lots to report, because it's FAIR WEEK!!! But I think I'll report on the Fair in the next post, because I also have a finished project to record, and the Fair post is going to be long enough as it is.

I finished spinning the blue merino/silk. I really wanted to get this done before the Fair, both to enter it for judging and to clear off my bobbins for the Sheep-to-Shawl event on Saturday. Since I wanted to spin all the singles at once, then ply, I had three very late nights. Late like 3:00 a.m. (or later). But I got it all turned into singles late Saturday night/early Sunday morning.

So very beautiful, all wound up and ready to ply. I started plying Sunday morning (later Sunday morning, that is, after sleeping), and I figured it would take about nine hours to ply a bobbinfull, based on a previous large laceweight project. That project was done on my Ashford, which has smaller bobbins, so I figured that it would take a couple hours longer to fill the Schacht bobbin.

I plied and plied and plied. Then I plied some more. I worked on it most of the day Sunday, every free moment I had between Emma's activities, laundry, and general out-and-about. Then after Emma went to bed, I settled in and got serious. I didn't finish, but got too tired and went to bed at about 3:45am. I finished it up Monday afternoon. I think that bobbin took about 12 hours to ply. I skeined it Monday evening, which took a full hour. I was very tired of niddy-noddying, and am seriously plotting how to construct a skein winder.

When I was finally finished winding that off, it was 7:45pm. I looked at the remaining singles on the bobbin and said to myself "Oh, that's just the leftovers. It won't take long to ply that up." Ah, the deception of the singles. It took 7 hours to ply the "leftovers."

However, there was a moment of triumph at 3:00am. Nobody was awake to share it with me, but I took a picture so that YOU can triumph with me. This is the end of the two bobbins of singles.

The exciting part? Those are the honest ends of the singles, as they came off the bobbins! Two bobbins containing eleventy jillion miles of singles each, and they came out within FOUR INCHES of each other! I was impressed. No need to ply from both ends of the last bobbin!

I skeined the second batch and washed them both before I went to bed, so they could get a head start on drying. Fair entries were due by noon Tuesday, and it was now 3:45 am Tuesday.

Luckily, Tuesday was clear and sunny, so the skeins mostly dried outside on the railing of the deck. They still hadn't completely dried by 11:00, so....... I finished the one for the Fair off in the oven. I baked my yarn. That's perhaps cutting the timing a bit close. It worked, though. Fifteen minutes at 200 degrees, turning occasionally.

Larger skein is 5.1 oz, 1825 yards
Smaller skein is 2.7 oz, 832 yards

The specs (total for both skeins):
7.8 oz
2657 yards
35 wraps per inch
5450 yards per pound
spun worsted
singles spun using the 18:1 whorl
plied using the 21:1 whorl

Now, Jaggerspun Zephyr (white yarn on the left) is 5040 yards per pound, so mine is slightly finer, but the feel is comparable.

I can't wait to do something with this. It's fine, soft, consistent throughout the skeins, and I think it would make a gorgeous woven shawl. Something twill-y, to show off the sheen and drape.


Liz said...

Holy crap, Sue. You better get a ginormous blue ribbon for that yarn. It's beautiful and I am SO impressed!!

cyndy said...

Beautiful bobbins--awesome plying!
Lovely, lovely skeins Sue~
You get my vote!

I'm sure you are going to make something fabulous out of that yarn, can't wait to see what you do...

Cathy said...

Gorgeous! What a good job! I can't wait to see what it becomes AND I am impressed with the 4".