The Posies Shawl : spin the yarn

by Anne Podlesak

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Purchase Violet Cache Roving from Pigeonroof Studios

Pigeonroof Studios Violet CacheWhen I first contacted Krista of Pigeonroof Studios about doing a collaborative Spinalong/Knitalong with a custom colorway for Ennea readers, I was thrilled when she said yes.  We talked about various different fiber bases and both agreed that her soft and bouncy merino roving would be perfect for a shawl yarn.  After we decided on that, I let her work her magic with the dyeing, and she came up with the “Violet Cachet” colorway, a gorgeous blend of soft blue-purples, lilacs and violets.

Krista sent me a 4-ounce braid to work with.  Her fibers are always very easy to work with, and this one was no exception.  I did want to break up the colorway a bit, since I knew I wanted to spin a 2-ply yarn to maximize my yardage.   I broke the braid into 4 equal pieces lengthwise, and then I split each of those 4 pieces lengthwise into 8 skinny strips (which I find also helps my drafting control with bouncy fibers like merino).  I gently coiled each of those pieces into small bird’s nests to keep them organized and clean while I was spinning the fiber.

I spun the singles using a supported backward draft technique, allowing the singles to retain a lot of air and not overtwisting them.  I spun all 4 ounces onto one of my larger Ashford bobbins, and then wound the singles off using a ballwinder to be able to utilize every last yard of spun yarn.

Pigeonroof Studios Violet Cache singles

Pigeonroof Studios Violet CacheI plied from the interior and exterior of the center-pull ball I had created, adding a little bit extra twist in the plying to create a light, but structurally sound yarn.  The final skein was 545 yards from 4 ounces of fiber (or 2130 ypp), a light fingering-weight yarn, which wound off at 22 wpi.

To finish the yarn, I wound it onto my skein winder, added 3 sets of choke ties, and then let it soak in a cool bath with SOAK wool-wash.  I spun it to remove excess water in the washing machine, and let it air dry.

Technical Details:  A 2-ply, semiwoolen yarn, 22 wpi and 545 yards per 4 ounces (2130 ypp), a light fingering weight yarn.

Photos © Anne Podlesak.

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1 Response

  1. June 14, 2012

    […] decided to use an idea from Anne over at Ennea Collective, who talked about “maximizing” her yardage for the Posies Shawl.  So last night, I […]