Thursday, November 29, 2007

Spindler true confessions

Here is my spindle collection.

At the back is the homemade spindle from my "Sheep to Scarf" class. In the front, from left, are a handmade spindle from Annie May's eBay store, a Louet, a tiny Cascade, a Schacht convertible, and an Ashford. The two on the left were gifts from Amy. The Cascade was a souvenir from Minneapolis. The Schacht came from Rose Tree in Ames, because I thought I might want to compare top whorl and bottom whorl spinning with decent spindles, although I have not yet tried it as bottom whorl. (Non-spinners: The whorl is the flat piece. Top whorl or bottom whorl refers to where the flat piece is in relation to the stick as you are spinning.) I have absolutely no recollection of obtaining the Ashford. Maybe at the sheep and wool festival a couple of years ago? Stitches Midwest? Yarn Barn? I honestly don't know. I like it a lot, though.

I had spun some on the purple fiber before, like, a year ago. Earlier this week I finally took it off the spindle and made a little fist sized skein out of it. Then, I prepped some more of the fiber, using my new "predraft the heck out of it" technique, and spun it on the same spindle. Vive la difference!

The first yarn is on the left. See how it is fat in spots and really thin in other spots? Look how much more consistent today's batch is in the Extreme Closeup.

I'm pretty pleased with myself about this one.

My young friend Lillian commented recently, assisted by her mother, that I should be careful not to suffer a similar fate to Sleeping Beauty whilst spinning. No needles are needed with drop spindle spinning, so I am probably safe.

Katie would disagree, though. I keep my spinning gear in a small Rubbermaid box. A few days ago, I took out a spindle and set it on top of the box while I fussed with the fiber. A spindle full of yarn has some characteristics that are irresistible to a kitty - it rolls funny, it has stuff she can grab onto, and the little bit of fluff at the end looks sort of like feathers. So naturally, she had to make a grab for it.

And conked herself right in the head with it.

She yelped and ran away. Then she turned around and bitched at it some more, before skulking off to another room for some private time.

For two days, if I so much as touched the spinning box, she was on high alert, backing away slowly and leaving as soon as possible. She relaxed a little bit today. She even sat on the bed while I took the picture of the spindles - but she stayed well away from them.

Today in History: November 29th was my mother's birthday. She's been gone almost 4 years now. Her housekeeping lessons are implemented chez moi on a hit or miss basis, but she gets all the credit for teaching me that You Can Make Things, and for never once telling me that one of my creative ideas was stupid or couldn't be done.


Jon said...

"Yes, sweetheart, of COURSE you can have a unicorn farm on the moon when you grow up. You just have to eat all your vegetables and work really hard in school!"

This is the sort of thing that makes me nervous as the time of parenting grows ever closer (No, the wife's not pregnant). I'm a terrible liar. I think maybe I have to convince my subconscious that I'm not LYING to my child, I'm ENCOURAGING my child, even if my statement doesn't happen to be true.

Cheryl said...

Encouraging creative thought, Jon, that's how you survive. "Hmm, interesting. What would that be like? Why don't you draw a picture of the farm?" I'm sure Alex can talk you through the details when y'all spawn a cub.