Well, clearly the Tour de Fleece coupled with summer vacation is enough to completely wipe out any motivation I have for blogging. Sorry about that! But rest assured that I have a) enough new handspun yarn to last for at least three weeks of Fibery Fridays, with more to come, b) some knitting progress and c) lots and lots of berries.
The first of my finished TdF yarns.
Fiber: Wensleydale, dyed by Adrian in the Mollusc colorway, a fiber club offering from August or September of 2007
Spun: I was going for laceweight singles, so I used the regular flyer for my Lendrum at 7.5:1.
Stats: two skeins, coming in at 467 yds/4.7 oz and 465 yds/4.1 oz - 1590 and 1815 ypp respectively. ANywhere from 35-50 wpi.
This top was an extra batch I ordered when I received my original fiber club offering, and I had visions of spinning it all up for a BSJ for some lucky baby. However, I'd never spun a longwool before, so it sat in the stash for a long time. I decided that part of my challenge was going to be spinning up the earliest fibers from my stash, and this is definitely one of those. This time around though, the colors spoke to me more for a big lacy shawl, so laceweight singles were on the menu.
The fiber was actually really easy to spin, once I stopped being scared of it. The top was much narrower then I've seen before with other wools (merino, shetland, etc), and needed a bit of predrafting after it's long hibernation, but after that it spun easily. I did notice my hands were a lot farther apart then they are for shorter fibers, but it wasn't too hard to adapt to the staple length.
I finished the skeins with a fulling bath. I was really worried that I'd added to much twist because the yarn before finishing was waaaaaaay overtwisted. However, three times through a hot/cold bath tamed that, and they ended up balanced. Yippee! The finished yarn has an absolutely gorgeous halo, and is super soft. The colors blended in the singles in such a way so that there's really nice transitions between the colors. I can't wait to knit this up, but I need to find a good 950 yd shawl pattern. Anyone have any suggestions?
Now for knitting (and keeping with the color theme): I've been working a bit on my Aran Necklace Camisole in the past couple of days as my spinning mojo has gotten a bit burnt out.
It's coming along, and I'm now working on the front gussets, and should be getting the front done over the weekend. The yarn (Jo Sharp Soho DK) is still pissing the crap out of me - umpteen-plied splitty cotton yarn is not my friend - and I'm pretty sure I'm going to run out before the top is really finished, but I like the color, and I'm hoping it will be long enough not to show off my oh-so-lovely mom midriff. Stay tuned.