The hands remember…..
Apologies for the lack of posting – baby small has been poorly and in need of lots of cuddles and attention. She’s on the mend now though and getting back to her usual busy self which has given me a bit of time to make this….
It’s my first plied handspun and I’m ridiculously proud of it. It was all spun and plied on my drop spindle. I spun two singles – one of rather lovely hand dyed corriedale wool and one of less lovely commercially dyed merino – then wound them into balls on my nostepinne. I placed the balls in bowls in an attempt to stop them for rolling around too much – a rather vain attempt as it turned out (will try upside down flower pots next time) – then plied them using the drop spindle again.
The yarn isn’t perfect – its a bit ‘thick and thin’ in places – but if I wanted perfectly uniform yarn I guess I could just go and buy some mill spun stuff! In my opinion, part of the beauty of handspun is its more rustic quality and the fact that whatever you make with it will be truly unique.
Someone more eloquent than myself has described learning to spin as less like learning something new, more like remembering something old. This really struck a chord with me as when I started spinning it just seemed so right. My hands wanted to be doing it and now, if I go for too long without spinning, they start to twitch impatiently. It’s as if they’re telling me “this is what we were made to do”. Perhaps is stems from some strange, deep-rooted, mystical, past-lives type memory thing (!) or perhaps its just that I’ve found something I truly love to do. Who knows!
It’s very different from my love of crochet. The pleasure I get from crochet is more to do with the finished object or the ability to experiment and design, but with spinning, it’s the process I love. I love watching the twist run up the drafted fibres in a smooth fluid motion that seems almost magical to me. I love how the fibres slip easily and gratifyingly against each other as I draft. I love how the spindle just keeps going round and round and round long after you’d think it would have run out of spin. It all seems so simple but oh so clever. I apologise for all this gushing – I guess I’m pretty besotted! I know its early days yet but I’m starting to feel I’ve finally found my vocation and that’s rather a nice way to feel.
Back to practicalities. I’m not quite sure what I plan to do with the handspun. Part of me thinks it would be nice to save up all my early handspun for a big project and make something truly fabulous but then there’s the other part of me that appreciates instant gratification. When I get chance, I plan on crocheting up some swatches in various stitches using the handspun to see how it looks. I guess I’ll just see what ideas the swatches inspire….