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I'm Laura. I am female, 31, a gamer, a bookworm, a knitter, a spinner, a tatter, pierced, tattooed, musical, vehemently geeky and occasionally ineptly artistic.

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Tour de Fleece 2011 Wrapup


Posted at 25 Sep 2011 02:39:10 PM

While my original game plan was to spin a two-ply laceweight from half a merino/??? fleece which I have in the closet, I soon realized that just sorting the fleece and dividing it in half would take the best part of a month's free time.

So, midway through, I switched plans.

I've had this muga silk sitting on my desk downstairs on a little tiny Golding for probably a year now. It's been worked on bit by bit, but I wasn't making any real headway and was getting decidedly tired of having it stare at me. (Fiber guilt trips are the worst!)



So, with about two weeks to go, two long weekend overnights to work and two weekdays off to compensate, I pulled out all the stops!

Not counting the initial spindleful, the first 2oz was spun last week. The second I wasn't sure I could manage between going out on Thursday night and my wrists already not being in the best shape, but between staying home on Friday and working Saturday night, I was done by just about midnight.

Plying started around 3:30am and was finished by noon. Voilą:


(click to embiggen, as the Yarn Harlot would say.)


1016 yards of laceweight silk, 2ply. It's not my target - 1000 yards/4oz - but it's the closest that I've come so far, and my very first 100% silk yarn. It's also the most consistent yarn, start to finish, that I've spun. I'm quite proud of it, actually.

Now, upstairs to watch the new Top Gear: America with Dan, and then to pass out before work rolls 'round tomorrow. And just because I love you, blog readers, here's a picture of my cat pretending to be a perfectly normal queen-sized bed sheet:


Whatever do you mean, "pretending"?






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Tour de Fleece 2011


Posted at 24 Jul 2011 08:28:44 PM

Now that it's, er, almost done, I've finally gotten some photos together of the very limited progress that I've managed to make during this year's tour!

In the very first days I plied up 380 yards of Mountain Colors BFL. This was officially my fastest fiber-to-yarn achievement. I started on a Wednesday night and finished plying on Sunday. Yay! (Granted, some of the ridiculous rate was because I had to work that Wednesday night so there was some extra "awake" time...)

There are looooooong color repeats; I did my level best to keep the colors in sync, but had to do some monkeying about in places while plying. I think that I'll use the final product in a Stripe Study shawl along with some grey handspun alpaca.



My original goal was to spin up the half fleece which my friend Scylla from Knit Night gave me. It's a merino/something cross (parentage is a wee bit unknown) but it's very fine and spins easily from the lock. Luckily for me the fleece was washed already, because if there's anything that I don't have time for these days, it's scouring fleece.

It migrates from a very light silvery gray to light brown into a very dark chocolate brown. My hope is that I can separate out all of the locks and organize them in order, then divide it in half by weight so that I can have a reasonably color-matched two ply. Unfortunately this necessitates taking over the floor of the craft room while the project is in progress... hee.



I did manage to spin up two little sample skeins and since I'm surprised at the results - both had about the same amount of plying twist but the one with pink ties had less spinning twist has a much better feel and drape. That's what I will be aiming for in the final yarn.

While the floor is occupied, I've tackled 4oz of Muga silk top which I've had staring at me for awhile now. I started it on a Trindle, which met a sad end when a bowling bag accidentally landed on top of it. Then I transferred it to my little Golding, which was great except that it mostly sat on my desk and I didn't work on it. Wednesday night I gave up and started running it through the wheel. It has more of a halo than I prefer, but that may just be a characteristic of silk top that I need to learn to live with?

I have 2oz done, and the second half started. (Again, this ridiculous production rate is courtesy of having to work all night last night.) The terrible collages are courtesy of some free online thing, as I don't have Picasa on my MacBook - sorry.



I've got some Abbybatts lying around as well as some 1oz tussah silk colorway testers that would be relatively easy to motor through in the name of stashdown... I'm thinking about working with those in the final days of the tour.