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It’s amazing how much I can get done when there is something I don’t want to do. Last weekend, I finished knitting my heliotaxis pi shawl. The logical conclusion, then, would be that I would have blocked it this weekend, particularly since my sweetheart was away in Greeley for his nephew’s first birthday. This is, of course, not what happened.
Begging to be blocked, but today was not the day.
Instead, I started spinning.
My friend Martha, her husband Jake, Lucas (my sweetheart) and I were down in Denver at Fancy Tiger down in Denver a good while back. Martha was in love with some hand dyed roving she came across but wasn’t quite comfortable enough to turn it into yarn just yet. (I will note that she is filled with talent and I bet she could have made it happen.)
The roving was Polwarth, a breed I had not yet had the pleasure of spinning. I volunteered to spin the fiber if she bought it. She would get her yarn and I would get the experience of a new fiber.
As I am wont to do, I allowed the fiber to ripen on my shelf until it found its way into my cue. Yesterday, I found the conditions for making her yarn to be perfect. It was the excuse I needed to not block my shawl.
So, I ripped the roving in half lengthwise and made my first singles.
The spinning started at Knitting Man- the Gay Men’s Knitting Group I started here in Boulder. After that I swung by a queer health fair where I knit and talked with a few fabulous lesbians. Then I decided to make my way to Pearl Street- wheel in tow.
I sat down on the bricks for some public spinning and had some great conversations with people who were just fascinated by the magic of the spinning wheel. I can’t tell you how much I love sharing this thing with other people!
At some point, a young man walked up and said “I make those wheels!” This is Boulder, home of Schacht, so it was no surprise to come across one of the craftsmen who manufactured this fine tuned bit of engineering that gives me so much joy.
Finally, my man returned home from watching his nephew plaster himself in cake. By this point, my first bobbin was finished and I was ready to begin the second. I took my second half of roving and ripped it into 4 parts lengthwise. Doing this gives one ply a color repeat that is 4 times more frequent that the other ply.
I spun with intensity. The second ply was finished by bedtime. If you’re a spinner, you know how important that is since you are supposed to let the singles rest overnight before plying. (I will confess that I don’t always follow that rule, but I do my best.)
Sunday morning was bright and sunny- for a bit. It was cheery enough to encourage me to get my yarn done, and I did. I fed the two plys through the wheel in no time and produced a pretty fun little yarn, if I do say so myself. I’m pretty sure Martha loved it. In fact, I think she’s still walking the streets of Boulder showing it to anyone who will give her a second glance. Ultimately, the yarn came out to 4.2 oz and 430 yards- perfect for a shawl. I can’t wait to see what she does with it!
Perhaps I’ll write a blog about her process as she turns my strands of wool into something truly beautiful. At the very least, it will give me something to do besides blocking my shawl.