A few days ago, the group started a March- Spin- to- Knit- Along. The plan is to spin your alpaca, or a blend thereof, and knit it into a cowl during the month of March. The pattern is designed by Ami Madison. The group plans to discuss their on going projects throughout the month, and address any success or failure. The idea here is collective knowledge...learning some tips and/or skills from each other in order to add to an individuals existing repertoire.
Personally, the SKAL is a good exercise for me. It is helping me to plan for a project..working it from the fiber to finish. There are many times when a spinner can select, from her stash, the perfect yarn for a project. For this exercise, I have selected a pattern and I am attempting to spin a certain type of yarn to be used for it.
The fiber I am using is composed from "seconds"..the shorter and second best bits of a fleece.
The seconds were dyed with Jacquard Acid dyes. When I started to sample, I blended directly on the hand cards, but have since moved on to blending one color at a time and taking small bits of each color to spin sequentially. Tufts of "short cuts" or felted slubs were allowed to remain in my singles. The singles were plied and the color runs were sometimes equal with slight overlap and some barber-pole stripes.
When I selected my colors, I had visions of purple and yellow crocus on a spring green lawn...and when I look at my results..well...not so much! I had not planned on so much pooling ...
However, the cowl..(so far)..does have a redeeming factor...it is made with Alpaca! And the texture of the yarn is slubby and soft. The seconds have behaved as I hoped they would, and I have a nice lumpy lopi yarn of approx 9-12 wpi. There is success with the yarn, but not the dye. So, there is always the choice- or possibility- of another trip to the dye pot.
What say you? Shall I toss it into another cauldron?