Banner image

Hand Spinning News

Easter is just around the corner and of course Wonderwool Wales. It's lambing time too and as usual at this point I haven't been able to resist posting some cute lamb pictures

An interesting theme running through this month's picks is gradient yarn. If you're interested in the articles about long gradient dyeing or gradient spinning, one of our free patterns this month looks great in a gradient.

Thank you to all who entered the draw for a copy of new book Yarn Works. If you like to get creative with your spinning techniques then you may like another new book featured this month, Spinning & Dyeing Yarn by Ashley Martineau. Once again I have a copy to give away.

Read on for this month's round up of spinning news, reviews, fun and freebies.

Photo above right: Dangly bunny pattern by Sarah Knight.

Contents


News, resources and articles from around the web

A Spinner's Compass

A Spinner's Compass

Documenting your yarn is important if you like to stash your spun yarn to select for commercial patterns later.

Jillian of KnittySpin gives us this comprehensive run-down of the various measurements you can make and the tools you could use.

http://www.knitty.com/ISSUEss14/KSFEATss14KS.php

Guide to Dyeing Yarn

Guide to Dyeing Yarn

This free eBook from Spinning Daily contains a number of articles originally published in Spin-Off magazine on the subject of natural dyeing.

Subjects covered include collecting plants, walnut dyeing, experiments with different types of water and solar dyeing.

http://nls.interweave.com/t/bfkbbNR4vQBBY~MEJbBYqa3MhaaaBYq3Mh


discuss any of this

From Blogland

Knock, knock! Who's there?

Knock, knock! Who's there?

Earthchick loves it when yarn turns out exactly as expected. This is her first try with Southdown and she liked it. The fibre is club fibre from Hello Yarn.

http://earthchicknits.com/2014/03/18/knock-knock-whos-there-yarn/

Spinning wheel bag

Spinning wheel bag

iBecks made this bag for her Joy because she wanted rucksack-style straps, internal pockets and because she wanted to spend the money saved on fibre.

It's a great job and looks eye-catching.

http://ibecksfibrearts.blogspot.co.uk/2011/05/spinning-wheel-bag.html

Breaking Black

Breaking Black

Believe it or not, this is Rebecca's experiment to 'break' black food colouring into its constituent colours.

Black colouring is made from other colours and in her pan with fibre, the black split into other colours.

Two different brands of black colouring gave different results. Click through to see the very colourful finished dyed fibre.

http://www.chemknits.com/2014/04/breaking-black-food-coloring-wilton-vs.html

Spinning Barber Pole Yarn

Spinning barber pole yarn

I'm not keen on barber-pole yarn and neither is Benjamin, but during an office spin-in, he plied two contrasting singles and liked the result.

As an experiment he swatched using three different methods, crochet, stocking stitch and zoom-loom woven. The latter seemed to suit this yarn best. You can see all of the results here on the Schacht Spindle blog.

http://blog.schachtspindle.com/2014/04/spinning-barber-pole-yarn.html

British Valais Blacknose sheep

British Valais Blacknose sheep

You may have seen the Collisons on BBC's Countryfile a week or two ago, they have imported a flock of Valais Blacknose sheep and now have the first lambs of this very cute breed born in the UK.

You can 'like' their Facebook page for news and pictures like this showing the progress of the lambs.

https://www.facebook.com/valaisblacknosesheepUK

Just The Facts

Just the facts

It's hard to imagine that this little boy may be siring his own lambs before too long.

Patchwork Farm are recording their Jacob lamb births at the link below.

http://patchworkfibers.com/newlambs.html

The story of the handspun hat

The story of the handspun hat

Mary doesn't say how she split and spun her fibre, but she did notice that part of the plied yarn was more barber-pole than the other. Her post about the spinning is here.

The project shows how unplanned things can be features. In part of the finished hat the colours are stripey and in another part more heathered. Another unplanned feature is the puckered top, made by decreasing faster than the pattern says.

http://www.hugsforyourhead.com/2014/04/the-story-of-handspun-gift-hat.html


discuss any of this

Tips and tutorials

Long gradient dyeing

Long gradient dyeing

Rebecca has achieved a very long rainbow gradient in this tutorial, partly by laying out her yarn and hand painting it with long colour changes, and partly by using a blank, or a machine knitted length of fabric.

She made the blank herself using a hand-cranked machine, and when the dyeing was finished, she pulled out the blank and re-wound the yarn.

Believe it or not, these strong colours come from Kool-Aid, an american drink full of food colouring.

http://www.chemknits.com/2014/03/rainbow-dyed-long-gradient.html

Ginny's method for spinning a gradient yarn

Ginny's method for spinning a gradient yarn

By coincidence, Ginny has written about spinning a gradient yarn this month. Instead of separating the colours, she divided her braid into colour repeats. This worked for her because her dyed fibre contained about ten repeats of the transition.

http://www.sweetgeorgiayarns.com/2014/04/spinning-gradient

How to spin from a batt

How to spin from a batt

We've occasionally had articles about dealing with batts which I think are very useful.

Katie has made a video which is a great way to demonstrate the techniques and she shows four methods of spinning her batts; making fauxlags, vertical stripping, from the fold and z-stripping.

http://www.hilltopcloud.co.uk/blog/14007903


discuss any of this

Keeping this wheel spinning

Your news here

Your news here

Are you a teacher, pattern designer, supplier, dyer?

Would you like to reach the growing readership of thousands of hand spinners and at the same time help to support Hand Spinning News ?

Read more

Yarn Works

We have a winner

Thank you to all who emailed in to enter the Yarn Works draw. The random number generator picked Jen's email and so a new copy is on its way to her.

Once again, here's a link to the project that I made from the book.

http://stitchywitches.blogspot.co.uk/2014/03/roisin-wristankle-warmers-from-yarn.html

Spinning and Dyeing Yarn by Ashley Martineau

Spinning and Dyeing Yarn by Ashley Martineau

There's plenty happening on the book front. Spinning & Dyeing Yarn is large hardback book.

It's aimed at the more creative spinner who loves big and fun yarn, the many topics covered include tie dyeing, coil plying and spinning with mixed media.

For the DIYer there are instructions on building equipment from scratch; a drying rack, hackle, drop and kick spindles, niddy noddy, even a spinning wheel.

If you're tempted to go professional, there is a section with lots of useful information including developing a brand, photographing your work and selling online.

For further inspiration there are articles with advice from such figures as Lexi Boeger.

It's a weighty book, hardback with 200 pages. It's retailing at £25 and if you'd like to enter a draw for this review copy, just email me at shiela@hand-spinning-news.com with Spinning and Dyeing Yarn in the subject line.

http://hand-spinning-news.com/images/spinningdyeingyarn.jpg

Residential weaving, dying and fabric printing workshop

Residential weaving, dying and fabric printing workshop

I've heard from Alison and Sandra who will be attending this workshop and suggested that I mention it here.

Tasara Studio, Kerala, Southern India run workshops in weaving, dying and fabric printing. The next one is November 2014. The cost is 900 euro for a month which includes most materials, tuition, accommodation and food. The workshop is limited to 10 people and booking has already commenced. You can book through Facebook by making Tasara a friend or visit the Tasara Studio website. Flights will need to be booked separately.

If anyone would like to speak with Alison or Sandra about this, please email me shiela@hand-spinning-news.com and I'll put you in touch.

http://tasaraindia.com

Gallery

Sometimes just a picture is enough

Pogona shawlette

Pogona shawlette

This is Elizabeth's Pogona. The fibre was a gradient-dyed BFL and Elizabeth has clearly mastered the art of maintaining a gradient with 2-ply yarn, which she discusses in an earlier post on her blog.

She likes the pattern which she found easy once past the increase set-ups. It's easily adaptable for any yardage.

http://deepseaknits.wordpress.com/2014/03/19/work-not-in-progress-wednesday-2/

Support spindles

Support spindles

This month's sexy spindle shot is once again from Rahardjo who seems to own a wonderful collection of spindles and knows her way around her camera. Here she's spinning singles from a wool/silk mix which will end up as a fingering-weight 3-ply.

http://rahardjoknits.tumblr.com/post/81727561617/2nd-spindle-got-heavy-i-started-to-spin-on-a-3rd

Crocheted baby bootees

Crocheted baby bootees

Every scrap of handspun is valuable and compulsivespinner suggests these cute baby bootees as a great way to use up small lengths.

These ones were made from wool from her own sheep, hand dyed using food colouring.

http://cherylharper14.blogspot.co.uk/2014/03/crocheted-baby-booties.html

Itches & Scratches

Itches & Scratches

These very pretty rolags were made from some club fibre blended with a merino/silk mix using a blending board. I look forward to seeing the finished yarn.

http://weekendknitter.com/2014/03/27/itches-scratches/

Jane Shawl Detail

Jane Shawl Detail

This fascinating detail is from PurplePolkaDot's shawl, knitted from handspun from Hilltop Cloud

https://www.flickr.com/photos/23062111@N02/13827366165/

Featherweight

Featherweight

I have no information on this colourful cardigan other than that it's distelfliege's second Featherweight cardigan and she's used a gradient handspun yarn.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/distelfliege/13669321383/in/photostream/

handspun morticia shawl

Handspun morticia shawl

Both the colours and the design are stunning. Beata loves Falkland fibre, "it feels sturdy but poofy and springy and the fibre is delightfully matte". She wondered whether the yarn might be too stripey but I'm sure we all agree that it looks amazing.

http://blog.hedgehogfibres.com/2014/03/handspun-morticia-shawl.html


Free patterns

A selection of free seasonal patterns which will work well with handspun yarn.

Chevron Delight Infinity Scarf

Chevron Delight Infinity Scarf

This free pattern adds an interesting design to an infinity scarf as well as potential for using constrasting colours.

The infinity scarf can be worn in a variety of ways depending on our fickle Spring weather.

Thanks to SandAndSkyCreations, I'm linking to her post where you can see the lovely hand dyed BFL that she's spinning for this scarf. She links to the pattern in her post.

http://sandandskycreations.com/blog/2014/04/09/wip-wednesday-sochi/

Dangly Easter Bunny

Dangly Easter Bunny

Easter is just around the corner as I write this but if you're a fast knitter you'll be able to make this adorable dangly bunny in time using this pattern from Sarah Knight of craftsfromthecwtch.co.uk.

The legs are designed to dangle down from a shelf. It looks to me as if handspun wool in a natural medium shade would be perfect.

The pattern is a free download from loveknitting until the end of June.

http://www.craftsfromthecwtch.co.uk/2014/04/new-pattern-alert-dangly-springtime.html

Sea Leaves by Sue Schreuder

Sea Leaves by Sue Schreuder

Thank you to Knit n Purl for sharing this picture of chelieanne's Shawl.

It looks wonderful in a graduated yarn which chelieanne dyed herself (she links to the tutorial she used in her Ravelry project) and the designer says that it can be knitted in sock or lace weight yarn.

Ravelry link.

http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/sea-leaves

discuss any of this


Events 2014

wonderewool wales

Wonderwool Wales

26 & 27 April 2014, Royal Welsh Showground, Builth Wells

Promoting wool and natural fibre production and its use.

Exhibitors and trade stands covering all aspects of felting, knitting, weaving, spinning, crochet and textile art with raw materials, equipment, books and finished products for sale. Competitions and a range of hands-on workshops.

A list of accommodation and camping in the surrounding area is available on the Wonderwool website.

http://www.wonderwoolwales.co.uk

Woolfest

Woolfest

Friday 27 June and Saturday 28 June, Cockermouth, Cumbria

Woolfest 2014 - the 10th anniversary!

Woolfest was founded to provide a showcase and a celebration of the best of wool and wool crafts.

The event is all about creativity and design with beautiful quality, amazing colours and skilled craftsmanship and this was recognised in 2012 when Woolfest won the Cumbria Tourism Award for Event of the Year.

www.woolfest.co.uk

Fibre East

Fibre East

26 and 27 July 2014, Redbourne Community College, Flitwick Road, Ampthill, Bedford MK45 2NU

The third Fibre East, those in the Eastern, Midlands and Southern Regions an opportunity to join in an event which aims to encourage and promote British wool and natural fibres.

Note the change of venue and date. The new venue is inside.

www.fibre-east.co.uk

Yarndale

Yarndale

27 and 28 September Skipton Auction Mart, North Yorkshire

For you if you love yarn and are passionate about all things woolly. It aims to celebrate the beauty and diversity of wool, cotton, linen and silk fibres in all their forms

yarndale.co.uk

Courses and tuition

Please let me know if you are or you know a tutor with a calendar of events.

discuss any of this


Happy spinning and don't be a stranger!

Shiela Dixon - Editor / curator

shiela@hand-spinning-news.com

If you're reading this newsletter on the web and would like it delivered to your email inbox for free every month, just fill in your email address in the box somewhere up there on the right. If you've reading this in your inbox and would prefer not to receive any more, just use the Mailchimp 'unsubscribe' link at the foot of the email.

A PeacockMedia publication


Twitter Button from twitbuttons.com

Be sociable

Please share HSN with your friends:

Find me (Shiela) on:

Archive

The current issue and previous ones are in pdf format at Issuu.com.

H S N at Issuu.com

Brought to you in association with

p2tog.com
handspinner.co.uk for spinning information and supplies