Spring Is In The Air

Since the move to Pittsburgh, I’ve been doing a lot more spinning than knitting, but I haven’t kept up with blogging about my projects. I’m trying to remedy that. So here’s a quick, down and dirty, picture summary of one of my recently finished spinning projects.

The fiber is the third of three installments of a Bee Mice Elf club. I bought a double shot–8 ounces instead of 4–spun each braid end to end, then plied the two together. The fiber content is 40% Merino wool, 40% superwash Merino wool, and 20% silk.

Two 4-once braids of beautifully handdyed fiber

Two 4-once braids of beautifully handdyed fiber

I fractal spun the fiber in double drive on an Ashford Traveller using the sliding hook flyer and its larger bobbins. The bobbin on the left is the split fiber.


I plied the two bobbins of singles together using Irish tension (bobbin lead). The 2-ply yarn wouldn’t all fit on one bobbin.


Here’s the plied yarn straight off the niddy noddy. It looks overplied, but a nice soak in water will help the twist relax.

Here’s the finished yarn. See, I told you a soak in water would cause the twist to relax. Both hanks are skeined together. Isn’t it purty?

I did a fractal spin with this fiber. I spun one braid end to end onto one bobbin. The I split the second braid once lengthwise, spun each length end to end onto another bobbin, spinning the colors in the same order. Then the two bobbins of singles were plied together using Irish tension.

I ended up with eight ounces and around 792 yards of sport weight 2-ply yarn. I’m very satisfied with how the plying turned out. Although I am a real noob at using Irish tension, the results are more than satisfactory.



Feed The Stash!

Lookie what appeared on my front porch yesterday.

A package from Loop Fiber Studios. Squee!

A package from Loop Fiber Studios. Squee!

Yep. Three Loop Bullseye Bumps. Because they are my very favorite thing to spin.

All three bumps are Merino, Nylon, and Angelina. I love the sparkle Angelina adds.




Red-Headed Woodpecker


Vernal Equinox

I see lots of fun spinning in my future.

You Are My Sunshine

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Have I mentioned lately that I love Loop Bullseye Bumps? They are tons of fun to spin into yarn, and even more fun to knit into garments, although I have to admit that so far, I’ve done more spinning of Bullseye Bumps than knitting of the resulting yarn. But here is one of the lovely Bullseye Bumps I’ve spun up so far this year.

Before the spinning began, there was a Loop Bullseye Bump.

Before the spinning began, there was a Loop Bullseye Bump. The color way is You Are My Sunshine.

The skein straight off the niddy noddy

The skein straight off the niddy noddy. I spun it end to end, then chain plied the singles to make this nonrepeating, self-striping yarn.

The finished skein awaiting knitting

The finished skein awaiting knitting. My chain plying has improved with practice.

I spun the singles on my Ashford Traveller in double drive and chain plied the yarn on my Lendrum. I ended up with approximately 290 yards of very colorful worsted-weight yarn. It reminds me of all the gorgeous spring flowers I see on my almost daily walk.

Hello, Mary!

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Pittsburgh is a very Roman Catholic city. It was settled by waves of immigrants from traditionally Catholic countries–Germany, Ireland, Italy, Poland, etc. I’m reminded of this every day when I walk around my neighborhood. Religious statues, mostly of Mary, are ubiquitous. Every single one of these is within four blocks of my house.


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It’s A Beautiful Day In The Neighborhood

When I was walking around my neighborhood yesterday, I took along my camera and snapped some pictures of some of my favorite houses along my usual walking route. And I thought I would share them with you.

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Playing Around

Last year, I purchased two 4-ounce braids of Malabrigo Nube Merino roving in the Archangel colorway, with the intention of playing around with it. I took one braid, spun it end to end, the first half on one bobbin, the second half on another bobbin, then plied the two singles together. The other braid I spun end to end on one bobbin, then I chain plied the singles.

I present, for you viewing pleasure, the results, with minimal commentary. I’ll let the fiber speak for itself. :-)

Two braids of Malabrigo Nube in Archangel

Two braids of Malabrigo Nube in Archangel, as soft as it looks.


One braid spun end to end, ready to ply


What are the chances that the singles would be so evenly divided between the two bobbins?


The bobbin on the top is the chain-plied braid.


The chain-plied skein beside the 2-ply on the bobbin


Chain-plied on the left; 2-ply on the right


A close up of the two skeins


The 2-ply after setting the twist


The chain-plied skein after setting the twist


New City, New Life

Things are starting to calm down a bit after the big move from Carlisle to Pittsburgh. Sort of. A lot of the unpacking has been done, but a lot of stuff is still in boxes and will remain so for the foreseeable future because we will be starting some big projects soon to get the house spruced up, and if we unpack everything, we’ll just have to pack it back up when the work begins. (How’s that for a run-on sentence?)

But I did finally buy a new desk for my computer

My new computer desk. The old desk didn't make the move.

My new computer desk. The old desk didn’t make the move.

which means I finally got my iMac back up and running, which means I’m finally getting around to updating my blog with pictures. Yes, pictures.

I haven’t been doing a lot of knitting, but I have been spinning like a fiend ever since I got my Travvy and my Lendrum unpacked and set up.


A River Runs… Loop Bullseye Bump for December, 2014



The yarn off the niddy noddy before setting the twist



Field of Dreams from Loop Fiber Studio

Field of Dreams from Loop Fiber Studio



Chain plied. The twist has not been set yet.

Both of these Loop Bullseye Bumps were spun end to end on my Ashford Traveller in double drive using the sliding hook flyer, then chain plied on my Lendrum using the regular head. I started the Field of Dreams back before we moved. I was almost half way finished with the spinning when we started packing up just before Thanksgiving, so it was untouched for almost two months. When I started it up again, it felt wonderful to be back at my wheel.

It may seem odd that I have been doing so much chain plying lately. I used to be quite vocal about my dislike of chain plying, but with practice, I’ve gotten more proficient at it, so much so that I have started to enjoy doing it. And having knitted with my chain-plied handspun, I have discovered that the “bumps” don’t show. I was skeptical when spinners/knitters said that the “bumps” don’t show, but now I know they are correct. :-)

I have lots more spinning to share with you, but it will have to wait for another day. I’m just happy to be back to blogging. With pictures! :-)





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