All this fiber!
See, all I wanted was a niddy noddy.
It began last week when Doug had asked me why I hadn’t taken my wheel out yet. (It’s only made one appearance since I’ve moved — for a brief 2-day spinning run.) I figured that in 3 months I won’t have the time or energy to get to know my wheel, so, since there’s no time like the present, the wheel came out of closet-hiding.
All of my bobbins were full of bits and pieces of wool or silk that I had spun. There was a bit of the parrot crock-pot dyed singles (which I hated and, after spinning a few yards, decided to over-dye with purple). A whole bobbin-full of the over-dyed yarn. Some silk on 2 bobbins that I naively thought I would spin to make a shawl for the wedding (with 106 degree temps, didn’t miss the fact that I didn’t get anywhere near done…).
The first thing to do was to clean up a few bobbins. Even though I haven’t spun more than two bobbins’ worth of singles, I decided to learn how to navajo/chain ply (see Spin Off for a great article on how to do this). First I practiced with the parrot singles. Then with some singles from a round with the spindle that had been sitting in my stash. And finally with the purple parrot over-dye.
Now I had two bobbins ready to start on a bigger project — I want to spin enough to design a sweater. My mom’s friend, Helene, had graciously given me tons of roving. The last batch contained 2 bags of brown combed top (about 1/2 lb. each). Since brown is not usually a color I’m excited about, I thought that I would use this wool to practice spinning with on the wheel. I got out the fiber and realized that I had gotten a pound of spinning gold. Not only is it super soft (maybe has some mohair or down carded into it) but that it is a dream to spin.
Initially I wanted a worsted weight for knitting but decided to just let the yarn speak for itself. I wound up with a skein of semi-worsted bulky weight yarn that really works well for this fiber.
But, since this was my first foray into spinning 2 full bobbins, I had a problem. To date my niddy noddy has been my lower leg (knee to foot). It’s worked well for small bits and pieces on the spindle, but for more? (Not to mention that it’s getting harder to reach my leg these days.) I needed a real niddy noddy…
This was Saturday, so on Sunday, I was going to head on over to my local fiber store, Stick and Stone Fiberarts. I was surfing their site when I noticed that they’d be closed. They were going to have a booth at the Southern California Handweavers Guild which was having their annual Fiber Fest!!!
It was incredible! Three large rooms full of fiber vendors, yarns and books. What was a fiberholic to do?
I decided to take it slow. I knew I wanted a niddy noddy. There was a book I wanted as well and I was hoping to get some bamboo to play with on my spindle. I made a pass around all the rooms and decided to sit down, breathe (well, by then honestly I was slightly out of breath carrying little one around inside of me — I don’t think it was all due to the fiber…) and eat lunch.
When I made my rounds I found that within 20 minutes a lot of the place had already been cleared out. Yep, it was like those other fiberholics had descended onto the goodies like a swarm of locusts. And saddest of all…
The bamboo I had been longing for was gone!
Oh well. Never one to let something like this completely get me down, I decided on a budget and to get just a few things…
I got my niddy noddy (realized when I got home that it’s metric, though…) A pound of wool, mohair, tussah roving from Nancy’s Custom Weaving, the book Teach Yourself Visually Spinning (lots of hints not in my other books) and some really soft cotton roving from Stick and Stone.
There was also a vendor who had everything marked at $4 — cones and yarns. They had some of the softest cotton imaginable! I must say I restrained myself and only picked up 4 320 yard skeins.
All in all not a bad day’s take. I restrained myself quite well. Found some interesting fibers to spin.
And, I got my niddy noddy.