January 2, 2011

Happy New Year!

Although, while happy is nice, it is such a short word for all I really wish for you. Health and love and safety and accomplishment and satisfaction and joy and excitement and peace and more.  That's a good start.

Do you make resolutions? I don't. The good sounding reason is, why wait for a new year to make a good change. My truth is, I choke on resolutions. Its one place where I get contrary and dig in my heels and decide to not do something. Calling something a resolution wakes up all the negative voices in my head and gets them chattering. So I try to stick to making choices.

I ended the old year and began the New Year the same way, spinning. As I mentioned here, I decided to spin for a project, some 3 ply sock yarn. For my experiment, I chose some hand dyed BFL roving that a friend was destashing and decided to pair it with some alpaca roving already in my fiber stash. I figured to use about 1 ounce for each ply, because usually I can get a pair of socks out of 3 oz. of yarn. So 2 oz. of BFL I split into two presumably equal pieces and spun one length, then took the other length and divided it into 6 skinny lengths.  I ended up with 3 bobbins looking like this;

Of course, the lengths didn't match up completely, all of the center bobbin was used up before the other two, so I spun some more alpaca to make a 3 ply with the remaining BFL. And ended up with this;
The light grey alpaca really toned down the bright jewel tones of the BFL, more so than I expected. But, that is part of the reason I'm plying playing around with this, to learn firsthand what happens. Since there is a lesser amount of the 2 alpaca singles/1 BFL single skein (bottom of pic), I'll use that for the toes and heels of the socks and make every thing else with the 2 BFL/1 alpaca skein. Oh, quick project notes on the spinning; in a word, over spun. Not greatly, but more than I wanted. Washing and beating the yarn helped. It is usable. And it seemed like most of the two colors from the BFL wound end up being red and green together. Kinda Christmas-y. I'm not exactly crazy about that.
see all that red & green! at least the BFL has some sheen, thats nice.
Yesterday I cast on the socks, toe-up, magic loop. Using the smaller ball on the right, with it's lovely, heathery colors. Just a basic sock, so I can see what the colors do.  As absolutely no planning whatsoever went into thinking about patterning or pooling, I know these socks won't be identical. And I think calling them fraternal is silly. They are sisterly, and henceforth shall be called the Society of Sisterly Socks.

The yarn is wound into center pull balls so I can work both ends. Right away I noticed that the weight of the yarn from the inside of the ball was much finer than the yarn from the outside. "Wow", I thought to myself, "I really do spin different at the beginning of a bobbin than I do at the end. Well, I'm sure it won't matter much." I could say these things out loud, but I get annoyed when my family humors me, so its better if I keep it to myself.  I stayed up past midnight (!) to greet the new year, noted that the 2 toes still looked very different in gauge after about an inch and a quarter of length, and went to bed.

Those of you with sharp eyes may have already spotted the problem, but I didn't figure it out until this morning. After deciding to start over, I started pulling the center yarn from the ball, looking for it's weight to match the outside of the ball a bit better. That's the red/grey yarn over the smaller ball in the picture above. See the problem yet?

How about now?

Yeah, that top yarn is only 2 ply. I ran out of one of the alpaca singles and just 2 plied the remaining singles on the same bobbin, figuring I'd separate it later. Then forgot all about it. Oops. Now the 2 ply is safely set aside, maybe for future sock darning, and the Society of Sisterly Socks restarted.

I already love the gentle colors of the toes, I wonder what the rest will look like?


  1. I love the 2BFL/1alpaca yarn color! Cheerful, not seasonal, at least to me.