Drop Spindlin’

I am learning to spin!  I was at the fair a few weeks ago, and I was looking at all the fiber related things.  I noticed that there were going to be several types of fiber classes offered throughout the fair.  One of them was learning to use a drop spindle.

I’d tried this once before.  My mom taught me, and I have a neat spindle that my dad made me.  But I didn’t get too great at it, and I didn’t stick with it then.  I decided though that I was ready to try again.

Turns out it is one of my new favorite things to do.  I don’t know why exactly.  It’s very repetitious, but I really like the feel of spinning the spindle and then working the twist into the fiber.  People say that knitting is a meditative soothing kind of activity.  I can see that, but I experience that feeling much more with spinning.

So far, I am a beginner who is not too good at it.  Once I can actually make beautiful fingering weight yarn, I imagine it will be even more relaxing to me.

This is the fiber I bought from a seller named woolgatherings on etsy.

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I also bought a really neat spindle from another etsy seller named Snyder Spindles  It is pretty and light and spins so nicely.  I love it.

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My spinning is not great.  There is definite variation in my efforts.  Lots of thick and thin and then those lovely slubs of really thick spots.

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However, I think the yarn on the right side is a small improvement over the other two hanks, and it is the one I did last.  Slowly but surely I am improving.

I finished spinning, winding, plying, washing and drying it this morning, and I was looking forward to knitting it up.  I had 4 oz of yarn from which I think I made about 150 yards of pretty bulky yarn.

I found a free pattern on ravelry called “Big Chunky Comfy Hat”.  It’s a great simple pattern.  I was able to knit the entire hat this afternoon.

I asked Davey to let me take pictures of him modeling it, but he didn’t want to be the subject of pictures.  Instead, he offered to take the pictures of me in the hat.

Here’s my favorite:

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It makes me laugh.  He got much better though.

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He finally got tired of me wanting him to try one more, so he decided to put the hat on after all.

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It’s just a really simple pattern of p2 knit 1 rib, and then I switched to k2 p1.  The decreases are easy and fun too.  I wanted it to be simple because I like the way the yarn (inconsistent as I was) spun up.

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I think I underestimated how much yarn I actually spun, so I am pretty sure I have enough for another hat!  When I was a beginning knitter, I made more hats.  I am back to that now as I learn to spin more smoothly.

This drop spindling is a whole lot of fun.  I have some BFL fiber from a local sheep too that I’ve started, and it’s wonderful to spin as well.  I’ll have to write about that soon!

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