Spinning Trials

Spinning Trials

Another short post today, just because I wanted to share a little video with you that I made last week. I was playing around with the idea of Nply (aka navajo Ply aka Chain Ply) and I figured out this way of doing it around a core yarn. Its a lot of fun to do this, and it makes really huge stacks that, because of the chaining, are relatively stable as well. The cool thing is the variations you can get with this, making smaller or larger stacks, using smooth or textured yarns, thick or thin or thick AND thin, even the possibility of adding in objects by threading them onto your loop as you ply… What else is super cool, is that since I shared the video on FB, some other people have been trying this too and sharing the result with me! I am looking at YOU Lisa Renee McKenzie! Check out this amazing yarn she did!   and I know she is making more, and had a great idea for adding in Beehive coils too! I love the snowball effect that ideas have 🙂 Lisa called these ‘Megastacks’ and I really like that name, lets stick with that one 🙂   So this is my quick post, here is the video! and some pics of the yarn I made like this, and there will be more to come.. This is a very simple technique in which you simply wrap your NPly around a core thread, taking the yarn from the opposite side of the core to form your chain. I also discovered its possible to alternate grabbing that yarn from over or under the core, so altering the texture of the stacks. There will be lots more experiments to come, Lisa and I already thought of: using a thick and thin yarn, addins, using a really overspun yarn to add in snarls, and of course, there are all kinds of colour possibilities too! If you try this one too, please tag me if you post pics to Facebook, I would LOVE to see what you dream up with it! and here are some images of the yarns I trialled with this...

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Knitting? Yes! Made a Cowl

Knitting? Yes! Made a Cowl

  Do I knit? No, not really 🙂 But this was a really simple project that turned out pretty well, as in, wearable, with no dropped-stitch-holes, and straight edges – a triumph on needles for me! To make this I used some of my super puff thick and thin in white, and a small skein of a blended art yarn (like this one). I also used two mismatched big buttons. It was really simple to make (obviously because ‘I’made it). I cast on about 18-20 stitches and then just knitted (garter stitch) as you would for a straight scarf. I started with the art yarn and made a block of that, then changed to the thick and thin. When I figured it was almost long enough I used up the rest of the art yarn so both ends of it have the colour and texture, but its asymmetrical, as in, the blocks of this colour are different lengths. I added the buttons on with the ends crossed over each other, so it fastens across the front. I don’t know exactly what the finished length was, but you just need to make sure its long enough to sit comfortably around your neck and the ends meet nicely across your chest.   This was a gift for a friend, and it looked fantastic on her! I was so happy about that 🙂 It was also super fast to make, I think it took me an hour to knit on size 35 (19mm) needles. The thick and thin makes it especially cuddly, soft, and really cosy to wear. I liked the texture contrast with the art yarn too, and its a good way to use a smaller skein of very textured, colourful yarn without it being overpowering in the finished item. This is what I like about knitting: its really fast when you use bulky yarns. When it works, it is very satisfying and I always get a great sense of achievement from it! Its possible to make something super simple like this yet have a really nice wearable piece when its done. What I like about art yarns, they add some pretty melody to my otherwise gregorian chant style knitting skills.  ...

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Loom Party

Loom Party

Its been such a lovely spring feeling week this week. Blossoms, blue skies, sunshine… aaahhh It was great to get out and take a drive down to Pattys house, especially since I knew she had just taken delivery of a brand new Saori loom! Loom assembly party! I was also looking forward to catching some sun in her lovely garden, and Lucca was quite excited about the duck feeding opportunities. Sally joined us too and after third coffee we got started on the loom. It was something of a brief assembly party, because, apart from Patty undoing first the ONE AND ONLY red tie that was explicity instructed in the manual to NOT to untie first, it all went pretty fast. Sally filled in for RED TIE  and held it all together while we dropped in a couple of bolts and tightened everything up and there it was 🙂 A lovely piece of equipment. I am so impressed with the workmanship on these looms, every part of them beautifully made and finished. The goal of Saori is simple, and everyone can use it, and they have totally accomplished this. I really was amazed how fast and easy it assembled. I even had time for fourth coffee before leaving in time to avoid the inevitable traffic jam on the Rotterdam ring. AND there was also christmas in a Saori box for me too, as my comb reed also had arrived! YAY! Of course I had just warped my loom the day BEFORE this so I have to be patient and finish the weaving that I already started before I can swap reeds and have a play with the new one, but it should be really interesting to see what I can achieve with it. The idea of the comb reed is that the top of it comes off, you can move warp threads around while you weave. I could get in a bit of a tangle but that too could be interesting! So here are a few pics of the loom building. This is the SX60 two shaft loom, mine is the all wood version and this is the metal tube one, I think its a bit lighter, and its also extended so works better for taller people, as in.. not me 🙂      ...

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