Spindling, A Photo Essay and Dumpling Bag.
I took this:
And plied it so that it looked like this:
Then knit it into this:
This is my very first attempt at plying. I took some very old singles and plied them on my spindle. I hung them dry under tension and then knit them up into Perdita. I used the bluebell chart. I think it's lovely. This yarn, now that it's being spun and plied looks almost exactly like the first ball of trekking xxl that I ever purchased. It's a little funny. I still have lots of this roving to spin but at the moment I'm plying up some larger balls that I have spun.
Okay, so I have a little confession to make. I have decided that I don't care about trying to ply a "balanced" yarn. The little ball that I plied up was wildly over-plied (and overspun for that matter) and when I washed and dried it and wound it into a ball? None of it mattered. It knit up just fine, it didn't behave too strangely in the ball and it didn't bias. Additionally, there were still places after it had been washed the sat in the ball for a week that were really under-plied. Places where I was basically knitting with the singles parallel to each other rather than plied together. So, I've decided to ply my yarns together until they look right. Not a very scientific method, I know. But I think it's going to work.
I also finished this last week:
Pattern: Dumpling Bag from Winter IK
Yarn: Lamb's Pride in cream, and handspun grey wool for the embroidery
Mods: See below
I used size 10 and 10.5 needles because I didn't have any size 13 and I didn't double the yarn. So, I had to cast on more stitches and added rows to meet the size requirements. I also didn't buy rings for the handles and instead just interlocked them before felting. I ran this through the washing machine twice, on hot, heavy duty load, with a pair of old jeans to get it felted. It's still a little under-felted but I like it. Using the handspun for the embroidery worked out very well. I like the bag and hope to use it quite a bit. It's cute. And a very fast knit. I think it took all of two days, maybe.