Like The Queen
Whatever happens to strike my fancy, but surely some sort of fiber content.


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Monday, March 22, 2004  

Late in the evening yesterday, a stray concept ambled across my mind and I thought, "Oh, I'll write about that on my blog tomorrow." So naturally, it ambled on out of my mind, which seems particularly sieve like these days. I suspect it had something to do with spinning, since that has consumed me for over a week. The latest issue of SpinOff landed in the mailbox last Thursday and I have scarfed the whole magazine down. Still hungry for more words on the subject, I dug out back issues; the one on spinning cashmere, the one on alpaca - especially interesting since I just spun up another crimpless fiber and wanted to know more about these hair like yarns. The article on pills and how they are formed - and how to prevent them from forming - and what to do when they do form (snip them with sharp scissors - pulling them causes split ends which form new pills).

In a very interesting article on twist, the author - and I'm thinking it is Rita Buchanan, but I'm not sure, for the magazine is upstairs - says knitters tend to like the looks of tightly twisted yarn - it's more defined and compact, but they will prefer how the loosely twisted yarn performs. She has photo samples which vividly demonstrate this. I'm particularly interested in this issue because I'm spinning up some very fine yarn and am constantly checking on the twist, as well as the diameter. There is such a balance between the two - I want the yarn fine enough to work well with the very thin angora bunny yarn I made last week, but I don't want it to be stiff.

How I wish I had a teacher who could watch me and advise and teach me all the things I'm missing as I read these articles, watch these videos, and practice on HeyBaby. I feel - as I said above - so very sieve like. Shaped like a bowl, but doesn't hold water. Mind now, I am getting better, but I feel that a fine teacher could point out so many areas where I could do so much better. Or even one or two areas where I could do a little better! Teachers are the greatest short cuts to excellence.

Md. S&W has a 3 day spinning seminar before the actual show and I'd really like to attend, only if I could get the time off, which I can't, I know I'd have to take Ana Zilboorg's class on twisted stitch knitting. If she has 3 days worth of teaching to do on that subject, by golly, there is a lot more to learn than I realized, about that exquisite textured knitting. The issue is moot. I would simply love to take a Patsy Z class down at the John C Campbell school, but yikes! It's next week! And it's her class on non-wool spinning. I stupidly missed her class in January on advanced wool spinning techniques. I sure could have used a week in NC with her instead of any of the horrible weeks I plowed through last January.

Creative Strands has a plethora of spinning classes this July and it is possible I will make this workshop. Only - (gad Bess, what a whaffeler!) I also want to go to Knitters Camp in Wisconsin and that is the same week. I've talked it over with BD and he understands, and supports, this intense need to make the pilgrimage to the home of my muse. It is the Zimmermann/Swansen team who turned me into a knitter and I feel as if at least one face2face with the real person is essential to my further development. I could put one of them off for the other in pretty much any given year, but a sweet friend of mine has offered to go with me to Wisconsin this year if we can still get in.

So, today I shall call School House Press and see what openings there are and tomorrow when B and I get together, we'll discuss both the Wisconsin venture and the Pennsylvania one.

Somehow or other, though, this gal needs to be in the company of GreatOnes and to soak up their wisdom and magic.

BTW, the weekend spinning has been a total discovery and joy. I had lots of time to spin on Sunday, as my guests were nearly all guys by this time and they had GuyStuff to do. I played with making that brown merino into a fine, worsted spun yarn. I've filled one bobbin, a good sized chunk of another, and will spin away on it this week. Goal: to ply it and wet set it before Saturday so I can show it to my Stony Mountain Fiber buddies. And next time, on the good advice of the article on twist - I will make a bigger sample of a new yarn before I fill two bobbins - and I'll wet set it and knit a real swatch of it.

posted by Bess | 7:35 AM