Become part of the circle sharing inspiration for spinning and other fibre crafting. It is a warm and reassuring place, sort of like a favourite chair near a cosy fireside, where beginners and experts come and go as they please. It's a place to share what we know, learn from each other and display what we've created -- while supporting and inspiring each other on the wonderful journey associated with handspinning and wool-related crafts.

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Woolly Wednesday May 2011

Welcome to the May Woolly Wednesday. Wow another month!

We are hosting Woolly Wednesday on the first Wednesday of every month.

Think of it as a creative gathering, or a virtual guild meeting.  Bring along any fibre-related project, whatever it may be.  If you are starting out in fibre arts, share what you are interested in pursuing.  Let's show each other our projects, share any tips, tutorials, ask questions, seek advice. Add your post to the Linky below and we can visit one another and share, support, encourage, be inspired!.

Please feel free to add the button to your blog's sidebar with a link to Spinspiration, a lovely way for us all to link together. Just copy the image to your desktop and then in your blog design - add a gadget, add picture - upload the picture and then add the url (http://spinwheelspin.blogspot.com/) and the image will link to here.

Join us with the linky below, link to a recent blog post of your woolly adventures in the last month, we look forward to seeing you ...

We'll be back with our updates soon.

Dawns Woolly Wednesday adventures ... May

Wow, another month already. It was so lovely to see everyone linking to Woolly Wednesday last month, and to see what everyone is spinning and making.

I've continued to spin more of the grey zwartble and have now carded the remaining fleece into batts to spin it up, a lovely big pillowcase full of fluffy fluff! I have loved this fleece, it's lovely and long, soft and has a lovely lustre to it. Luckily there is another fleece, or is there two?, of Zwartble just waiting to be washed.

So other woolly adventures this last month. I was at a public event spinning with a friend and spinning teacher recently, had a lovely time spinning and chatting and enjoying the surroundings.

Busy spinning

I have been washing fleeces too. I have washed a Suffolk fleece which I wasn't sure about spinning but it has come up quite nice so will give it a go. It was quite dirty and had a lot of grassy bits in it, but has cleaned up nicely so I shall card some and see how it goes or use it in felting if it's not suitable.

I washed a Portland white fleece which is lovely and I'm looking forward to spinning soon. There was another white fleece I had which I wasn't sure of the breed - it was so filthy it was hard to tell! Anyway I persevered with it and gave it a good clean and I think it is another Portland and the curly crimp on it is absolutely lovely, I am so pleased with how it has cleaned up. I'm guessing by the curls and crimp it is a first cut.

One of the filthy Portland fleeces for washing
(will have pictures of it clean and carded for next month probably)

More washing of a couple of mixed bags of fleece, these were oddments from when I sorted through numerous fleeces skirting them of the dirty bits, and I also removed coarser wool that would be no good for spinning. These have been washed for my husband Alex who is working on a raw fleece (washed) peg loom rug so the bits of fleece not suitable for spinning are perfect for this. He doesn't card the wool, just uses it in pieces drawing out by hand and applying some twist.

So onto the spinning, here is some on the drop spindle - not something I do much of but I did take the spindle to the event to take a break from spinning on the wheel. Lovely rainbow colours, really should do more.

Drop Spindling a rainbow, slowly -
although I have done a little more since then, just haven't taken a picture

Most of my spinning this month has been the grey zwartble as previously mentioned. Spun into singles and plied 2 singles together I have now washed, dried and made two large balls of this wool yarn - both around 200g and measuring about 260 yards.
 2 big balls of Zwartble

Thanks should go to my husband for his patience holding the wool while I wound it on the ball winder. He helped my wind a few other skeins that I washed too, wool spun over the last few months but had been sitting waiting for a final wash. Just take a look at this lovely lot of woolen yarn.

 What a lovely lot of yarn ready to knit
(Dorset Horn, Jacobs, Alpaca and Zwartble)

Now planning what to make with the zwartble but I can't make up my mind! I should have more of it once I've spun the rest of what I have carded, another 200g soon and hopefully at least another 100g, maybe 200g if I'm lucky.

In other woolly news, I've sown some seeds for dyeing plants looking to doing some natural dyeing with them in the near future, from garden to dye pot to wonderful colourful yarn.

Looking forward to seeing what everyone else has been doing.

Woolly Wednesday for May

The month has flashed by in a glorious haze of warm, spring days.  Earlier in the month, I dyed up some of my handspun yarn.  I dyed one batch using nettles with alum as mordant.  Those are the pale yellow.  The second batch I used onion skins with no mordant and those are the bright yellow.
I also spun up these two skeins with Jacob.  The back skein is Jacob and the front one is white plyed with dark brown Shetland. 
And at the moment I am spinning raw alpaca.  I am loving it!  It is so soft and such a joy to spin.  I love the fawn colour!  I managed to obtain a batch of other colours too - white, grey, plum brown and chestnut.
And I have just bought a charka spinning wheel!  I can't wait for it to arrive so more on my attempts at  spinning cotton on the charka next month.  It is also shearing time at the rare breeds farm in mid May so I just can't wait to visit and grab some great fleeces.  I am hoping for some longwool - Cotswold and Wenseydale.
Really looking forward to reading everyone's spinning posts.