Traci Knits

Friday, March 13, 2009

I bought some really pretty hand dyed Blue faced Leicester roving (which I believe was actually top, most folks just call it all roving, but that's a subject for another post) from Hampton Artistic Yarns on Etsy in a color called Boyfriend. I don't know what drew me to this color. Smooth transaction, by the way, I'd do it again. I don't remember if I've spun bfl before, if I did it was a long time ago.

I was in the mood for a little color experiment and there are a few ways to approach a delectable bit of top. First off, I like to play with the fiber a little bit. I run it through my hands, give it a few gentle tugs to get a feel for how it will draft, gently pull it open and loosen it up a bit. I think this is especially important for hand dyed tops or rovings, because I like to make sure I'm not going to have any sticky parts when I start spinning. At the same time, I think about how I want the colors to appear. I decided to do this:

I wanted lots of repeating color changes, so I split it apart in long thin strips and rolled it into loose balls, doing a little more predrafting as I went.

I spun half of it on one bobbin and the other half on another, in 2 different thicknesses.
I let them rest for the day then wound them into balls on my ball winder so I could ply each bobbin of singles back on itself. What I ended up with was different looking yarns of equal weight.

This one is around 81 yds, 10 wpi, which puts it in the DK neighborhood:

And here's the 42 yd, 7 wpi bulky version:

Of course, I like them both. The finer you spin it, the more the colors gather together and lose their individual definition. The yellows stand out more in the bulky one.

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