Last night/early this morning – had trouble sleeping b/c of a  tooth ache – I spun woolen for the first time.  I’ve always been afraid of the long draw; something about letting the twist get into the drafting triangle freaked me out.  I guess I just never thought I was good enough to do it.  I was planning to work on the Spirogyra spinning (btw…the name of the fiber is Teddy Bear Trio and it’s a 50/50 blend tencel/merino from dkknits, who makes gorgeous roving/top.) but the little bit of merino/bamboo that came with my newest spindle, a gorgeous creation from Yorkieslave called Monet’s Lily, a beautiful combination of colors that were just like the colors painted on the spindle, with a bit of color-coordinated firestar to go mixed in just called to me.  It was a much smaller project and it wasn’t for a specific project, so I could experiment a bit.

I’ve always gone out of my way to buy combed preparations of fiber b/c, as I said, I was terrified of the long draw, and it just seemed more orderly.  This mini-batt, or mini-batts as the case may be, they seem to be hand carded in small little batts were totally different than anything I’ve worked with before.  I did work with a batt awhile ago, but I did that on the wheel and I spun it worsted with the short draw and a very tight grip on the fiber in front of the drafting triangle preventing any twist from getting past me.  Like I said, this time I was more willing to play, and I loved the effect.  I also learned that firestar really wants to get everywhere and you must have a towel under it if you are going to spin in bed while watching General Hospital (which is great right now, isn’t it?).  I spun about half of it last night and plan to spin the rest into one cop that I will then turn into a plying bracelet and ply on itself – another new technique for me.  I’m thinking/hoping that the finished result will be about a fingering weight two ply; the singles are fairly thin.  I haven’t checked the wpi, which I should, but I’m just having fun.  I just ordered six ounces of the fiber from Sally at Yorkie Slave and I’ll be a little more careful with that since I want to make a shawl with it.

Does anyone have any experience with shawls that have firestar in them?  As I’m spinning the singles, I’m noticing that the firestar has a tendency to stick out all over the place and I’m hoping it will tame down to some degree after plying.  My big question before I plan a shawl and how to spin the big batt is will it be itchy?  Am I better off making something else with it?  What projects lend themselves well to firestar in the prep?  Thanks. 🙂  It doesn’t seem to be blended in well, more like it’s sort of sitting on top of the prep just barely carded in…I don’t know much about carding, though, so maybe it’s just the top layer…


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