You may recall that I bought a spindle with the intention of trying to spin paper into some kind of weavable material (May 2016 Cliff Craft Challenge). The words, straw, gold and Rumplestiltkin come to mind – some people may be able to spin paper into yarn but those people, I conclude, must be wizards! After abandoning my initial dream, I opted for the safer, more traditional method of spinning mohair wool tops into yarn. I used wool tops from a mixed colour Moorland themed bag that I’d bought from Texere as needlefelting supplies – lovely soft fluff in greens, blues and browns.
Trusty YouTube videos helped me to get started and off I went. I have a drop spindle (as opposed to a Sleeping Beauty style spinning wheel) so the idea is that you charge a leader with twist, then let that twist travel up the fibres, spinning then together. Once I got going, after more than a few false starts, I got quite into it. It’s quite hypnotic and I got a bit carried away with the rhythm and motion of it all.
Getting the twisted fluff off the spindle was another matter entirely and it’s taken me over 6 months (and getting to the start of this project in the process of getting up to date, blog-wise) to pluck up the courage to actually attempt it. So again, following a YouTube video, I wound the yarn (!) into a skein, dunked it in warm water and it’s currently weighted down over a door handle to block.
As I may have mentioned, spinning is addictive so I made an additional skein in pale blue with yellow and hot pink flourishes. There won’t be a lot of yarn so I’m thinking of using what I’ve made to crochet / knit some flowers for a brooch.
The yarn itself is interesting. I’m much more used to using plied yarn so my yarn is single ply but because I’m a proper novice it’s very varied in its thickness and some parts are much more closely twisted than others. I’ve started crocheting with the green yarn using a 3mm hook. It looks OK and I’m looking forward to improving my skills – it’ll take me a while to get to full wizard spinning status but I’m sure it will be good fun getting there!
Video used: Basic Drop Spindle Tutorial – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7R0Lb1qA7kE