Thursday, July 01, 2010

July 1st

This is Amanda. I just met her today. Actually, I met her earlier in the week by phone when Jeanne Giles called and said she was going to loan her wheel to a friend who was using a drop spindle, but who wanted to move on to a wheel. Jeanne said it had been too long since she'd used the wheel, would I show Amanda -yes I would - followed by Sharon, this is Amanda. Amanda, meet Sharon.
She arrived right on time for our 10:00 date and we spent three hours spinning and getting to know one another. She started spindling just one year ago, having purchased a CD spindle, wool and short instruction at the Bay Area Maker Faire. We worked on getting more twist in her singles and less tension on her wheel. I told her the Judith MacKenzie quote, "You don't want any more tension on your wheel than you want in your life." Note the photo on her phone.
I also showed her how I like to full my yarn, again from Judith MacKenzie. I wash the skein in hot water with Dawn and rinse in cool water, repeating 2-3 times. I use a baby plunger and vigorously work the skein in the bath to get a little fulling action going. Then I blot the skein in a towel and thwack it four times on the kitchen counter, rotating the skein four times until I've thwacked the entire thing. It looks great after all that abuse. It's scared of me!

Amanda was thrilled and so was I. I forgot to get a picture of the completed skein as I really needed to head to town. Amanda was so pleased and what a difference between the skein she did today and the one she brought to show me. I'm so proud of her work and had an absolutely wonderful time. Thanks Jeanne!!!
I had another date today - with Melissa, the new owner of Walden's Coffee-
house. She's a spinner and weaver and initially emailed me for guild information, saw the soap on my Etsy link and one thing led to another. My soap is now on sale in an area she has set up to sell locally made items. I brought her the soap in this ammo box I have had for years and she's going to put my sign in a holder. I'm pretty stoked.
Advice please - I have three balls of the colored silk/
merino and two of the straight brown merino. I think I've figured out a way to use the yarn in a cohesive way for the bolero. I originally planned to make the bands and sleeves in brown but I'm pretty sure I wouldn't like it. I've finally decided to make the banks in the color ply and then knit two rows, alternating each yarn.
While I like the bright bits of color on the stockinette side, I'm leaning toward making the reverse stockinette the right side of the garment. It's a little more subtle and also more homogeneous. What do you think?

Oh, and this is a significant date for me. Eleven years ago today, I was a delivery coach for my daughter and welcomed my grandson into the world.


Valerie said...

What a nice post about welcoming the next generation. A new generation of spinner in Amanda and your grandson 11 years ago.

Congratulations on the new soap venue.

Jody said...

I think your bolero looks good on both sides. Your soap looks wonderful in that display. I know I would buy it if I saw it!

Anonymous said...

That is a neat old box for your soap cdisplay. Those old boxes are usually built so well and the wood is nice. How wonderful to be teaching a young spinner - Amanda looks like she is having a great time. And congratulations on the Happy B-day!

Laura said...

I can't believe Kiernan is 13! I remember when he was just a little goober!

Definitely use the purl side. It shows off the yarn better.

I haven't whomped yarn in a while - I keep forgetting! I do know that I wouldn't do it on the Merino/Tussah/Bamboo, though. It comes out so cool just washing lightly and hanging to dry.

Fiber Floozie said...

I’m so glad to see another new spinner. You guys look like you’re having too much fun.
You mentioned there’s a new owner of Walden’s Coffee House. How New?
I have a knitting group that used to meet there in the summer. (Now we meet at Whole Foods) May be a group of us spinners should go welcome her.
You spindle spinning is looking great.

Life Looms Large said...

My useless opinion on your knitting is that they both look nice. It depends what you like. (And I'm not being diplomatic, just uncharacteristically un-opinionated.)

That's cool that you were able to get a new spinner going on a wheel!

And cool that your soap is available in a store now too!!

Happy July!

PS: Thanks for the moth advice. I'm still not sure what I'm going to do, but I'm leaning toward throwing the yarn away and just not taking chances. Hopefully that's not blasphemy!

Annie said...

The knitting: I prefer the reverse stockinette, as far as I can decide from the photos.
Thanks for the description of the way you full your wool. I also tend to frighten mine a bit: it makes it bwehave so much better, doesn't it?
Don't these grandchildren grow up fast?

Allison said...

I am tickled that Amanda has joined the fold!

Nina said...

All I do to my finished skeins is a quick wash and hang to dry. I've never found whacking it or fulling it up before use to give me what I want for yarn, especially since I often weave with it.
As to the knitted samples, they are both really nice. The stockinette stitch looks soft and the banded colours stands out as a nice feature. The purl side colouring looks a tad more sophisticated, although I'm not a big fan of vast tracts of purl stitches or garter stitch, I think I like it betterQ