New To Me Spinning Wheel

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I present to you a HitchHiker single treadle spinning wheel by The Merlin Tree. I was gifted this wheel by mother after she procured it in a trade with her quilt shop coworker. I have been doing my best to research this wheel as it’s a little different than most. It’s a direct drive wheel which means the flyer is turned directly by the wheel as you treadle. Honestly, its kind of an obscure wheel and it doesn’t have a lot resources either from the manufacturer or on YouTube. It has been a little frustrating but I shall persevere.

I have been practicing just treadling on the empty wheel because it is going to take some learned muscle movement to keep the wheel going in the same direction as I start and stop. That is just the ups and down of a direct drive wheel. Just putting your foot on the treadle can move the wheel in a direction you didn’t intend. The brake band also needs some TLC to be snugged up which I am hoping my woodworking father can assist with. I think I may also have to try to fall upon the mercy of the local spinners group for assistance/lessons. Time will tell…

With the wheel I also inherited the spinner fiber stash. In the bin in addition to a knitty knoddy and spare wheel parts was a TON of fiber. I dig through and found llama blends, alpaca blends, romney wool, merino blends and several unidentified fibers. This spinner clearly had good taste.

This all came from a rural farm, so right now it’s living my sub zero garage just in case it has anything other than fiber in there. I’m hoping to zap this with some heat somehow before bringing into the house with my other stash.

I’m interested to if I can become a spinner?

Spinning Some Alpaca Blend

My wheel was empty after finishing my last two skeins of yarn/plying. So I grabbed some fiber from my stash and got started on some new singles.

Most of my spinning is coming from the hand me down fiber I got from my mother’s friend. He bought a ton of fiber at festivals and farm stands. This was some alpaca and merino blend in the natural colors (I think). I don’t have a ton of information because I didn’t buy it.

So far its spinning really well and fairly thin. My skills are improving and my lumps/bumps are getting smaller and fewer. It really is intoxicating to see how fast this can go!

Happy Spinning!!

Hospital Knitting Day Two

My Dad did really well with his procedure and he got to binge like ALL the football games in his hospital room. So on day two I plugged in my headphones with a podcast and cranked on my Musselburgh.

I am finally on to the main body of the hat and done with DPNs for now. I checked my gauge like the pattern said and my gauge is coming up tighter than the directions. I did some math and decided to fudge it rather than frog and cast on with bigger needles. I added some more increases to make sure the hat won’t be a head squeezer.

This is really nice zen kniting just going round and round. I think this could be a good purse or travel project. Not a lot of thinking but really satisfying to watch the hat come to life.

Happy Knitting!!

Hospital Knitting

Knitting can make a lot of situations better. My father had a routine medical procedure that necessitated some waiting room and hospital room knitting. I thought it would be a nice pairing to work on his Christmas Socks.

I am about to finish the leg and start the cuff ribbing. I pressed my hoodie pocket into service as a skein minder. I got a few looks in the waiting room but it kept my work tidy, lol.

Happy Knitting!!

Beautiful BFL Skeins

My finished Fusion hand spun is all skeined and measured up! I was finally able to dig out my yardage counter and other spinning tools. They had migrated to the bottom of my fiber stash box.

First up, on the left, is the chain plied 3-ply. This came out to roughly 18 grams and 11 yards. So definitely a super bulky! I think I got 5 wraps per inch depending on where in the skein I measured. Next up, on the right, is the 2 ply. This one came out to 6 wraps per inch and there were 90 grams over 73 yards. So I think this one is more of a bulky weight.

I am pleased as punch with both and they have landed in the special “golden egg” portion of my stash for now. My brain is now planning my next spin!

Happy Spinning!!

Spa Knitting

As a belated birthday present myself I booked myself a spa night. I saved up all my birthday pennies and indulged in a 60 minute soak and 60 minute massage. IT WAS GLORIOUS.

I had solo access to the outdoor hot tub and sauna in a beautiful Japanese style garden. The air was cool and I could hear the wind rustling the trees. I basically melted into a puddle.

And guess what? You can totally knit in the sauna!! Of course your needs and stitch markers do get a little warm, lol. My Baby Blend Basic Hat did grow another inch before I dissolved into complete sweaty relaxation. That and I had to stop because I a now ready for the crown decreases.

Happy Knitting!!

Could Use A Little More Twist

My Purple and Teal plied yarns are washed, whacked and dry. I was chuffed to see how “big” of skeins I created!

I love these yarns and all their uniqueness. But if I was being honest (and a little critical) I think they each could have used a little more twist in the plying. They are spun very loosely but do hold together.

Next up I need to wind and measure these beauties. I think these might be closer to a heavy worsted than my previous bulky/super bulky. But I still haven’t located my yardage counters or wraps per inch tool. My craft supplies might be a bit chaotic right now!

Happy Spinning!!

Cast On: Musselburgh

I decided I could no longer resist seeing all the beautiful Musselburgh hats all over Raverly, social media and podcasts and I needed one of my own! I wound up the skein of Yak Sock from Moonstone Dyeworks and cast on my first Musselburgh.

I must admit I had put this project off for awhile because I HATE fiddly cast-ons with DPNs. I am totally capable of doing them but I have a mental block with them. And my needles definitely slipped out of my first try because it is slick yarn on metal needles.

But now I am off to the races and knitting the prescribed amount so I can determine my gauge and stitch count. Happy Knitting!!

A Plying Spree

My wheel was empty after finishing my Fusion BFL skeins so I decided to ply up my first couple of set of singles. My purple singles and teal singles were WELL rested and ready for plying.

I used my ball winder to wind both singles into center pull cakes to ply end to end. My spinning teacher recommended this for me based on the twist/singles she saw me making. So I just decided to give it a whirl and I learned a lot.

First up, I could really tell I spun the purple singles first. They had much more thick and thin spots with plenty of unspun bits. That is compared to my teal singles that got more consistent thanks to practice. And both skeins had some overspun spots where it made plying extra hard because the yarn kinked back up on itself.

At the end of the day I have two filled bobbins with almost finished yarn. Next up for those yarn babies is bath and whack! Happy Spinning!!

Look At That Balance

I took some time in between pie and napping yesterday to wash and dry what I’m calling my Fusion 2 py and Fusion 3 ply handspun.

I am super super super happy with these skeins. I have lots of issues but I managed two pretty well balance skeins that hang straight and stayed together through washing! Considering I have about 20 hours of total spinning under my belt I am super happy with my results. I am taking all of this with a growth mindset and looking forward to improving from here.

My chain ply is a little ropey and tight in places but still a super useful yarn! Next up is to dig out my yardage counter and get these measured up. Still betting on these both come out to a bulky weight. And I have absolutely no idea what I will knit with these. I might need to hoard them in the stash for a bit, lol.

Happy Spinning!!