Saturday, February 4, 2012

Spinning Silk and Buffalo Down


I have not been very interested in knitting lately, but I think this is largely because I've been feeling much more like spinning instead. I pulled out this silk that I had gotten from another handspinner's guild member who was giving it way at retreat. It was stiff and stuck together, and I had been kind of scared of spinning it and unsure how I should prepare it for spinning. I believe it was dyed with indigo and the process may not have gone so well, resulting in a seemingly miserable-to-work-with mass of fiber.

Silk Rolags

I tested the fiber length and found that it had already been broken up into shorter fibers. It was not reeled silk. I ended up carding it with my wool hand cards into these beautiful, fluffy rolags.

Silk singles

From these, I was able to spin thin, smooth singles, which I have wound into a ball and still need to ply.

Buffalo Down

Instead of plying the silk singles, I pulled out the buffalo down roving I won from Surprise Ewe at a guild meeting. I remember putting in a ton of tickets for the down to increase my chance of winning it, and the strategy worked. This was some of my "precious" fiber that I was too scared to spin because I wasn't experienced enough to "do it justice".

Buffalo down singles

I turns out to be very lovely to spin, and easy to make a fine, even thread with. I feel like I've spun miles, and I'm not even done with my two ounces yet.

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