yarny goodness

April 25, 2011

as promised,
i’m gonna get this blog back on track,
and give everyone some yarny goodness to peep.

though i don’t have a wheel of my own,
when i was working at natural stitches,
i could use a shop wheel.

in between helping the fine customers,
i worked on my first ever 3-ply yarn.
once i got all the singles spun,
i plied like the wind!

of course yarn isn’t done once it’s plied.
there’s always something more to do, right?
like the brutal weaving in of the ends after endless knitting.

personally, i follow judith mackenzie’s directions for finishing yarn from her amazing book the intentional spinner: a holistic approach to making yarn (every knitter should own it. even if you don’t spin, it’ll change how you knit. go on. buy it.)

first, you count your strands to calculate yardage.
doesn’t do us much good if we don’t know how much yarn we’ve spun, right?

then we “full” it a little by swishing it in hot soapy water.
(in the book, judith is shown using a small plunger and is really going at it. this scares me. i choose to “sauté” my yarn.

then we rinse/swish it in cold clean water.(remember to scoot your roommate’s papers out of the way, and put down a towel. never incur the roomie wrath during finals)

then i squeeze out the excess water in my own way.
i start at the top, and sort of pinch and roll with my hand.
it’s kinda like milking a cow (look it up).

then the fun part: the thwacking!
i beat the shit out of my yarn against the side of the tub.
(if only you knew how hard it was to get this shot)

after it hangs up for a while to dry,
yarn is born. (these were the first two skeins)

if i’ve done my math right,
i’ve got roughly 466 yds of a dk/worsted yarn.
not too shabby if i do say so myself.

and just to spice things up,
how about i give the yarn away?
here’s the rules; it’s a little complicated.

if you want the yarn,
you must get one of your knitter friends to leave a comment for you.
then, i’ll pick someone at random (it’s only fair).

are we clear?

you can’t comment for yourself.
your friend must comment for you.

just promise me, please,
if you win, you’ll actually make something with it!

who wants it!?

31 Responses to “yarny goodness”

  1. V. Says:

    Thanks for moving my papers. Roomie wrath averted! Haha.

  2. Sally at Rivendale Farms Says:

    I’m commenting for my pal Jan (aka Cat Crap Hill) who not only would love the yarn but would especially appreciate the Thwacking effort that went into it. She’s only been knitting a year or so and is a Knitting Savant, puts me to shame. She would knit something beautiful out of it which I would then bug her about until she gave it to me. (She appreciates my inner Bitch to no end.) See? Everyone’s a winner!

  3. Sally at Rivendale Farms Says:

    P.S. Really glad you’re back and on the mend!

  4. kris Says:

    I nominate my daughter Wolven Scholar (mary) she has just started to knit , she is trying to be a renaissance person when it comes to crafts, she spins with a spindle for now, does bobbin lace, knits, crochets, working on a quilt, and is going to take a Black smithing mini course in May,she is already knitting lace. Puts good ole mom to shame. She would appreciate all the work that went into it.

  5. Cait Says:

    my dear friend Juliet from grand rapids wants the yarn.

    the colors are perfect for her! she would just LOVE handspun, especially from YOU!

    glad you’re feeling better.

  6. Susan Says:

    I nominate my friend Cheryl. She is an avid follower of your blog I remember months ago when she first posted a link to it. She is the most creative artistic person I know. Always working on a new project and loves knitting. She loves things that are made by hand, and I would love to see what she would make with this yarn.

  7. Jan at Cat Crap Hill Says:

    I am writing for my friend (if by friend I mean someone who could get me to rob a bank because she’d make it sound like fun)– SALLY of RIVENDALE FARMS. Sally once cajoled me into buying two angora goats resulting in my husband leaving me (he says, “There has to be a line in the sand, Jan, and THIS IS MINE!) Of course, he came back the next day, but still. That Sally, she’s a homewrecker. I mean, she’s a homeTHWACKER. Give her the yarn or we’ll never hear the end of it. Of course, if you DO give her the yarn, she’ll compose paeans to your good taste and we’ll never hear the end of it. I’m going to go touch some yarn now and then go to bed. Night all!

  8. barbara Says:

    rather than finding someone to post for me . . . I choose to post for my daughter. She’s a bit of a beginner still, but has turned out some really nice things for her kiddos. So, this is for ladybug in Kenai, Alaska. Love ya, gorlie!

  9. Colleen Says:

    I’m posting this for my best and longest friend, Monica. She’s been the most supportive person in my life, the first person I can call when I’m freaking out (good and bad). And right now she could use something exciting in her life. Oh, and she’s a great knitter and artist.

  10. Carrie Says:

    I’m commenting for my friend oboesip, who, at 12:39 in the morning, doesn’t know I’m commenting for her. She just started knitting this last fall, and I consider myself her personal enabler. I’m not as good at convincing her to buy yarn as I’d like to be, because she’s very thrifty, but seeing as she is so thrifty (and crafty!), I know she would be extremely appreciative of free handspun yarn! And I would MAKE her make something out of it. There’s something about the look of that 3 ply anyway, that makes me think especially of the textures of projects she’s done so far.

  11. brooke Says:

    OK, your rule suck. I will commentfor my dear freind Healther, who is most worthy of your yummy bitch yarn.. Love it.

  12. Katrin Says:

    I am commenting for my freind Laurel. She is a wonderful person and I hope, that I can surprise her with this 🙂
    Thanks for the giveaway, the yarm is stunning.

  13. Sarah Says:

    Yay, you finished it! And it turned out so pretty!

    As you well know, I already have way too much handspun in my house, so consider this comment my entry for any other commenter who doesn’t have a friend to comment for them, ‘kay?

  14. cybele Says:

    My friend Fluffanie, who is NeatOGroovy on Ravelry, says she WAAANTS your yarn, Mr. Hotpants. She ‘knows’ you from MDSW- evidently you were in orange knit shorts. I saw you, too, but I didn’t realize I was witnessing a Phenomenon. (That word always makes me want to say “doo doo de doo doo” right afterwards.) Anyway, Fluffany will not cry if she doesn’t get the yarn, which is a good thing, because seeing a six foot crunchy granola second generation hippie woman cry is a sad, sad thing. But she will want to cry. Her lip will quiver. I will give her grapes and muffins to cheer her if necessary. I hope it will not be necessary. Thank you for reading to the end of this absurdly long comment, made by me, Cyb, my Rav handle that was once mistaken for an acronym that meant Cover Your Boobs. This is true, but don’t pay any attention to that- pay attention to NeatOGroovy, who is six feet tall and older than she has ever been. Thank you.

  15. Yolande Says:

    I would like this yarn to go to my daughter Natalie in Whitehorse, Yukon. Whereas I plan everything and follow patterns, she crafts by the seat of her pants. Her knitting and sewing projects make me think every time: wow how beautiful!

  16. Lori Pewsey Says:

    Thank you for giving me a great tutorial on end processing.. I really have never gotten that far and your wit made it easy to read the entire thing. I want to post an entry for my Aroha (Love) Swappee from PMPTWs on Ravelry. She is known as Strid8 (ravname) and is awesome. She deserves something this special, and would really appreciate having a front row seat on the process for yarn she wins. She re-purpose, she’s community minded and she’s got a tough day job. Yarny goodness like this would be a treat for her. I want her to have it.

  17. Astrid afKlinteberg Says:

    I’m commenting for Indulgence on Ravelry. She’s my new BFF and an awesome chicka! BTW–I love your blog and am for ever grateful that she told me about you.

  18. Knittingdancer on Ravelry Says:

    I am commenting for my sister Patsy (Sparky136 on Ravelry). I love your blog. The tutorial was great. I hope that Patsy wins this yarn, it would make her day.

  19. Jennifer Says:

    New to your blog and love it and hope you are recovering well. I’d like to nominate my youngest daughter Mackenzie because she is a fairly new knitter and I’d do just about anything to keep her encouraged in this joy that I hope lasts for her life time. I was a latecomer at 51 so I need to knit fast to do all the cool things I keep being exposed to.

  20. Sarah Says:

    I am commenting for my sister Amy, who learned to knit around the same as I did. However, with two kids and only one local yarn shop, she doesn’t get to knit with delicious yarns nearly as much as childless, Brooklynite me does. Awesome to read about how this gorgeous yarn was made, and I’m sure my sister would be ecstatic to have it!

  21. Janet Says:

    I nominate my friend Nan (aka nandodge on ravelry) as the recipient of this lovely handspun – she is planning a shawl from various handspun yarns in blue and greens amongst other colours – seems to me this would fit in perfectly 🙂

  22. Sarah Says:

    I’d like to see that awesomely thwacked yarn go to my friend Rachel in Ohio. I taught her to crochet, and then she went nuts and learned to knit, spin, and felt, teaching me all these things along the way. She is now an amazing, funky fiber artist with a lovely little daughter who is definitely going to be a fiberista herself. Plus it gets freaking cold up there. More yarn is good.

    By the way, the yarn looks great!

  23. Jill Says:

    I’m commenting for my “friend”, aka Mom, Karen. Mostly because I’m expecting a baby in the fall and I know, should she win it, that my baby will receive it knit into something wonderful. And really, what good would amazing yarn do me right now? I’ll have my hands busy with the baby and it is probably a crime to ignore the kibaby because I want to caress some amazing yarn…

  24. I want to claim it for my friend Cassie! She likes to knit but doesn’t have much money for nice yarn (she’s never used nice yarn before!) so this would be an awesome gift for her.

  25. lorraine Says:

    lovely handspun!….nominating my sister chloe..shes new to knitting and i think she would love to win this!..thanks!

  26. quinn Says:

    I nominate my friend Karen, who would love a surprise and would love THIS surprise very, very much!

    p.s. I don’t have to look up how to milk a cow…I actually know how to milk a cow. But how to photograph yarn-thwacking in a bathtub? Noooo…that I don’t know how to do 🙂

  27. Teresa Says:

    I’m going to comment for my favorite sister – Dena – who needs handspun because she isn’t that great a spinner yet and has made none of her own. I tried to teach her, really I did! (And maybe next time I try to teach her I will succeed – took her 2 times teaching me before I learned to tat!)

  28. craftink Says:

    I am nominating my friend Lou she never used handspun. (Neither do I). Maybe we can share the prize!

  29. […] i decided to give away my handspun, i never said exactly when i would pick a winner. somehow, today feels like the right […]

  30. Emily Says:

    How sad is it that I don’t have any friends who knit!? Hoping you’ll make an exception since I’m posting for myself. I’ve never worked with handspun yarn and think yours is awesome.

  31. Yvonne Says:

    I’m late, I know… but I must say it’s beautiful yarn!

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