Thursday, 11 November 2010

SPIN006: Low-Twist Singles

I spun up 120grams of BFL/silk yesterday morning.

The fibre was the November installment of Wildcraft Fibre Club. I wanted to try out some BFL blends for a while. Karen from Wildcraft suggested that BFL/silk or BFL/mohair may be a good start (while BFL/nylon can be trickier).  So I was really delighted to find a braid of BFL/silk when I unwrapped the parcel.


The colour repeats were quite long. About 4 regular repeats over the whole braid. Potentially it could become some stripy yarn. But I finally decided to split the braids into 3 different colours: yellows, reds and the intersections between yellows and reds. Spinning at 5.5:1, which is the slowest ratio on my Ashford Traveller, I got a total yardage of about 448 metres, pre-bath.


It's my first attempt at a low-twist single, too. Lots of unintentional thicks and thins. But I guess I should be more forgiving to my first low-twist singles. I wasn't able to get the right twists neither. They were definitely not low-twist enough. Therefore I had all singles spun over once again in an opposite direction to offset some excessive twists. The result was... well, funny. It turned out that the yellow was just right. It didn't twist by itself when taking off from the niddy noddy. The orange (from the intersections between yellow and reds) was still over-twisted and coiled up. The red one became under-twisted. It broke several times when I reskeined it with a niddy noddy. What to do? I felt it immediately by rubbing the breaks on my palm with a few drops of water. Not sure if it'll survive when it's knit up though.


I find BFL/silk a bit difficult to draft and spin compared to BFL. But no doubt it is a very beautiful fibre. The saffron-like yellow becomes a luxurious gold after spun up. Pretty. And it's soooo soft.

Now I have 3 mini skeins of 58m, 160m and 230m respectively. This time I am very determined to knit something with them. But I am still thinking what to do... Mitts or cowls? Or shawls?


Geez I LOVE spinning. I really do. Knitting and dyeing are great. But spinning, and all sorts of preps involved, really brings the pleasure and enjoyment up to another level. Even though handspuns may not look perfect compared to millspuns lying on John Lewis shelves, it's the unique experience and the learning process making this craft meaningful and addictive.

Hum... what to spin next? Maybe the Targhee from Spunky Eclectic or the natural-coloured BFL from WoW?

1 comment:

  1. oh WOW. I absolute love what you've done with the fibre!! The skeins look great in their golden, organ and fiery red colour ways. Great job!!