Plying Wool in a Heatwave

It’s a bit hot here today.

For me, the best part of hand spinning is the plying of the singles to create the yarn. It has been said that plying can hide all manner of flaws, which I am sure is true, but what I love is the process of making something that exceeds the sum of its two, (or more for that matter) parts. When plied together the singles become stronger, and they show their personalities more clearly. This is some yak down/merino fibre that I purchased from Ancient Arts Fibre Crafts at the Fibres West show last year. It was spun semi – woolen, about light fingering weight. When made into a two ply the two singles twisted around each other and bloomed, into a lighter, airy and soft yarn that will make a great cowl or scarf. (There is about 250 metres total so scarf/cowl is the plan.) The actual process of plying is so soothing and hypnotic –  the yarn is just held, and allowed to twist and feed onto the wheel as it needs to be, with just a bit of overt guidance.  So, nutty as it is to be handling wool in this heat, the pace of the activity is actually just about right.

I bet the neighbours really scratch their heads when they see me out on our scorching hot deck trying to “pose” skeins of yarn in the cedars. Especially when I try to contort my foot so I can take a shot of the socks I am working on. Good old Regia yarn, great colours, sturdy socks, they will be perfect in, oh, about October.

I cannot help posting more of our Manning Park wildflower pictures. Honestly, it was the best show in years.

4 thoughts on “Plying Wool in a Heatwave

  1. agujasblog August 6, 2012 / 12:04 am

    Those red and yellow flowers are amazing. Do you know what they’re called?

    • warpandwoofknitting August 6, 2012 / 5:06 am

      Hi – they are mountain paintbrush, also known as Indian paintbrush depending on the field guide. They were particularly great this trip, often they tend to be duller in colour, or more orange, at least in this region. I honestly think the wildflowers were the best I have ever seen this year, and I have been on this trail many times. Maybe the weather having been lots of rain, then real heat, I am not sure. We were lucky regardless.

  2. Karen Berthine September 1, 2012 / 4:57 am

    Beautiful photographs of wildflowers. I have seen Indian Paintbrushes while hiking on the US west coast – not commonly so I am always thrilled to see them.

    • warpandwoofknitting September 1, 2012 / 3:47 pm

      Hi Karen;
      Thank you very much. Mother nature really put on a show this summer – a good combination of rain and heat I guess. I have to say I really like your blog, your topics are always very thoughtful. Kind of fun this business!

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