Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Tales of my yarn stash

The oldest yarn in my stash...


I bought these three skeins back in 1998 or 1999 in Senegal when a new "mercerie" opened. A "mercerie" was the place where you could buy sewing notions, fabric, buttons and they had a very small section of "fil pour tricot", "laine"  ie "thread for knitting", "yarn".

I loved going to that "mercerie" to admire the yarns and fabric! That same year, I was reading Au bonheur des dames by Emile Zola   which has lengthy descriptions of the fabric section of a department store!
Most of these "fils" were imported from France and the ones I could afford were local but still a bit pricey for a high school student. Having a yarn stash was not an option because I could only buy yarn for a specific project and didn't waste an inch of it!

As we moved every 5 years, we learned from a very young age that accumulating stuff was not an option because we had to move eventually and couldn't bring everything. Each one of us was allowed a specific weight and mine was quickly used up with my books and  letters.

 After high school, I didn't knit/crochet for almost ten years. These skeins served as quiet reminders that eventually I would....

 4 years ago, I walked into my local yarn store. The summer has just begun and I had finally completed and passed  my qualifying exams.I remember seeing these two skeins out of silk and merino from Malabrigo...the same colors as the ones I had...but they were so soft and felt amazing on my hands!!!
It was the beginning of my new beloved yarn stash!

Sunday, April 12, 2015

I just want to spin

Finally Spring is here! No more gliding  driving in the snowy roads of Indiana!

I recently had a conversation with a dear friend in regards to spinning: techniques, type of drafting, ply and ability to replicate commercial yarns. As I listened in awe at her ability to grow as a spinner, I realized that on my end, I just want to spin!
When I first learned, I thought my ultimate goal would be to replicate commercial yarn but I never went beyond my thick and thin!

I am currently spinning the colorway "Marju" on Falkand fiber from SweetGeorgia Yarns and following the same process as always:mix colors, oops...had to add fiber quickly, a bump..etc..

I could spin thinner and actually I am trying to be a little bit more attentive as I am currently  obsessed with handspun mittens! There is something so magical about them...

Mittens made with FatCatKnits Targhee Combed top "Pepperspark and Hungry Horace"

Maybe it is the fact that they are mismatched...the colors changes...the bumps....the warmth...

I think I also love spinning without a plan because it is a way for me to appreciate the present and be grounded in the moment. For each yard of handspun yarn that I create, I won't be able to replicate it again if I have the same braid....
I did take classes to learn how to replicate commercial yarn and I got lost with the whole wpi, calculations etc.... It took the joy out of spinning for me...oh yes and counting the number of treadles, the twist.... etc...I truly admire those who have the discipline to do so.
Right now, I just want to spin....mix colors and go with the flow :)

Yarn Love Audrey Hepburn "Hidden Treasure"