Saturday spinning update: no confidence boost

This week I pulled out some Rambouillet fibre that I bought (from cjdelights on Etsy) intending to spin during the 2012 Tour de France as it passed through Rambouillet. That timing didn’t work out, but the fibre was still waiting for me.

I split it in about half, then I took the first half and split it into quarters. It spun up into singles that were nice and round, but uneven: very thick & thin.

A lot of times when I’m spinning I am able to spin very thin even singles (or sometimes thick even singles). I like they way it looks so much that you can frequently catch me pausing to admire the singles on the bobbin when I adjust the sliding hook on my Julia’s flyer.

The Rambouillet was nothing like this. I didn’t seem to be able to get an even thickness going, so eventually I just gave up and went with what was happening. I finished the first half and put an empty bobbin on the wheel. When I picked up the second half it felt much lighter. Crap. I weighed it: 45g. The first “half” was about 58g. I resolved to spin the second half as it was, without splitting it at all, but to spin it slightly finer than the first half so that I wouldn’t have much left over after plying the two uneven different width singles together. With the longer colour repeats, I’d end up with fractal spun yarn.

The new plan worked out pretty well. After plying I only had about 3 grams left of the first “half”, which I turned into about 10 yards of chain-plied yarn to empty the bobbin. The main skein is about 103 g and about 257 yards. The resulting yarn isn’t unattractive and the colour changes kept me entertained while plying. I don’t know if I’ll ever knit with this, but perhaps I can find a willing friend to test it out & see how it looks.

If anyone has any tips for spinning Rambouillet, I’m all ears!

And in my home life, my son had a breakthrough in his wimming lessons. Ever since he was very little he has not enjoyed lying down in water and washing his hair was a chore. For the last year or so I’ve been making a strong effort to enroll my kids in swimming lessons for every session except the summer. Sam had a setback, so this time I signed him up for private lessons. After his lesson on Thursday he was totally pumped up about the experience. This morning he was trying to figure out how many days until he goes again. Fingers crossed that the great teacher can get him comfortable enough to rejoin regular classes. It’s so nice to know that it won’t be a battle to get him ready for his lesson this week!

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3 Responses to Saturday spinning update: no confidence boost

  1. Elizabeth says:

    I just love the yarn you made. You could make wonderful mittens with it, if there’s enough. I find it much more difficult to spin thick yarn than thin, but I like your thick and thin result very much. It looks handspun, in a good way.
    Regarding swimming, my two kids took ages to learn. Eventually they did, although to this day it’s not an activity they enjoy. I used to notice that their asthma always got much worse in the water, and only a couple of years ago was it confirmed by a story in the news that pool chemicals are a major asthma trigger.

  2. Cookie says:

    Mittens might be good. Although, my first thought was a hat. Something slightly silly or fun for a child perhaps. I’m sorry the fiber didn’t want to work with you.

    Fingers crossed!

  3. Amanda says:

    I love the yarn!

    And as for the swimming, I was a kid like that, too. I actually ran away from a class once. After that, my next class was just me and the instructor. I loved the one-on-one swimming lessons, where I got all the attention and could progress at my own pace. (I also worried less about sinking because I knew the instructor was really watching me.) I guess those private lessons are more expensive, but they’re just the thing for some kids. :)