Wednesday, April 6, 2011

One Ugly Skein

Okay. Let me get the good stuff out of the way. The winner of my blog-o-versary giveaway is:

Stephanie from the Knitty Gritty Homestead!
 Congrats Stephanie! You're books will be arriving shortly.


I'm a closet fiber freak. I can't all. I'm a mediocre crocheter. But I still get THREE knitting catalogues, have FIVE books on the subject of wool, and have 14 skeins of yarn that are never used unless the kids convince me to snip off a piece to use a cat toy or a truck pull. It's a sickness really.

The thought of turning mere string into something gorgeous and usable intrigues me. My mother in law is gorgeous knitter. She tried to teach me once using a little analogy about putting birds on the branch but my birds kept plummeting off the branch and meeting their unseemly end. I eventually gave up and poured over her hundreds of knitting magazine, circling and initialing the ones I hope to have in my closet some day (hint hint if your reading this Dawn! )

Although I've given up the idea of knitting for now, I still lust after yarn. And wool.  And spinning wheels. My Grandmother gave me an old spinning wheel that I am BEYOND excited to have...I just have no idea how to use it! How amazing would it be to take wool from your own sheep, card it, dye it, spin it and knit it into something for you or your loved ones. Sarah over at Farmama tells a story of just that as she chronicals the life of a sweater she made for her son. She took part in each step of the process. How beautiful, how rewarding....what a wonderful way to connect with the world!

If I can't knit, I shall spin. Or so I think. A few weekends ago, we hit up new farmer's market in town. The offerings were slim, but there was live music and huge lawn for the kids to run barefoot on. I did come across a local vendor who sold goat cheese, gluten free bread and homespun YARN.  And next to the yarn was drop spindle. "Will you show me?" I asked.

I was on a stool in the sun before I knew it. K picked out some magenta roving, naturally dyed with a local cactus flower. She gently held my hands to show me how to hold the spindle, how to stretch the fibers, and finally, how to set it to spinning. Before long I had lumpy, bumpy mess of yarn wrapped around my spindle. I frowned but I was quickly reprimanded. "It takes practice" she said. " No self criticicsm until you've spun at least five skeins." She gave me her card and I pocketed it. I think me and the spindle lady are going to have a history together.

Anyhoo,  I've been spinning whenever I get the chance. The lanolin from the wool leaves my hands soft and it's mindless entertainment. My yarn is ugly. Really ugly. It's coarse and knobby and is a completely inferior product. It's quite difficult to pull your fibers evenly. But it's my yarn. I made it. And come hell or high water, I will use it to make something. It won't be pretty, but it will be mine.

Now all I have to do is learn how to shear a sheep...

1 comment:

  1. Your yarn is not ugly and knobby. It is what one calls "thick and thin" and people PAY for yarn that looks like this. It's wonderful for fun textured scarves. I too have a spinning wheel AND a drop spindle waiting for my hands to make something...even thick and thin yarn! Hooray for you for learning something new.
    And I'm SO excited that I won the giveaway!! Thank you for paying the extra postage to get it to me in Canada!