Monday, February 01, 2010

Wool Peddler

A couple years ago at the Madrona Fiber Arts Retreat, I saw my friend Jen's Wool Peddler Shawl. Her shawl was made out of handspun yarn. This shawl can be found in Cheryl Oberle's book, Folk Shawls.

I was bound and determined to spin up some of my own yarn for this project. I was a fairly new spinner at that time and thought it would take me forever to spin one pound of anything. In 2008 Ellen and I trekked down to the Oregon Flock and Fiber Festival. I found the perfect fiber for the Wool Peddler shawl I had conjured in my dreams.

The fiber was 50% silk, 50% merino dyed by Lisa Souza. I fell in love with this color...called Purzurple. I purchased one pound(since Jen said hers took about 1 pound) and I went home happily. I started spinning this soon after I purchased it. The roving(I didn't take any pictures) was very deep purple(some areas almost looked black) with pinks and various shades of purple. Once I started spinning the inside of the roving was white. I did my best to blend the white, where the dye had not saturated into the fiber, with the outer part of the fiber, to blend them. It did concern me at the time because the color range in the yarn was wider than I had hoped.

As you all know, Nihon Vogue got in the way of this project(as well as many others). Over time I spun up this roving into a beautiful yarn. I had to keep taking out my spinners control card to make sure I was spinning it "fat" enough. I kept tending to spin it too fine but with my frequent checks against the control card, I got almost a 2-ply worsted weight yarn.

Finally all the fiber was spun up and I was ready to continue with this project. Now for the knitting!

Mind you....although I have spun up a good amount of fiber in my time as a spinner, I had never knit with any of it! Yes, it is true. I have a small'ish stash of handspun that has sat in my studio just begging to be used!

Then, last year at Madrona, my friend Angela was wearing her Wool Peddler and hers had some mohair fiber that made it so soft and cozy.

That made me think...hmmnnn maybe I should knit a strand of my handspun with a mohair yarn for the same effect. I had some Colinette Parisienne in my stash. I purchased this yarn a few years ago in Cannon Beach. It was earmarked for a shawl at some point. The color I had was a deep purple. I thought this would be a great pairing to help minimize the areas in my handspun that had more of the white/lighter colors.

It worked wonderfully, in my opinion.

Hands down, this is my favorite shawl to cozy up with. It is soft, it is warm and I am so happy with the result. As you can see from the photos below it is quite large.

As soon as I graduated from year two of Nihon Vogue, this was the second project I finished.

I have a lot of blogging to catch up on!

I still have to post pictures of my last few Nihon Vogue projects. I also want to blog about my trip to Estonia this past summer!

I really don't have any excuse for not updating the blog. Now that I have a new'ish laptop and a better setup here I REALLY don't have any excuses for such large gaps in my posts!