Spinning on a Schacht MatchlessYesterday, I got to spin again. And then I got to ply the single I spun with another single (one that the teacher had spun). Plying is much easier than spinning, but it still takes some practice to avoid over- or under-twisting the yarns together. It didn’t help that my singles are still a little (okay, a lot) wonky. There are thick bits and thin bits. It’s also quite different from the teacher’s single in weight, so the yarns plied together in a funny way. Parts of it look like phone cord, parts of it look like Lion Brand Homespun yarn (which I happen to think is the devil), and parts of it look like normal yarn. I’ll Kool-Aid dye it and knit it up into something, just to see how it looks.
My second handspun ever.  It's a 2-ply undyed yarn.

To tell the truth, I was getting super frustrated in class, because I just could not get the hang of it. Everything was overspun or underspun, highly uneven, and had these huge slubs (big bits of unspun roving, where I couldn’t draft fast enough). But at the end of class, when I was just about ready to give up, I finally managed to do the short forward draw closer to correctly and was getting much more even yarn and real-looking yarn. It suddenly just clicked and I was doing it correctly more of the time than I wasn’t doing it correctly. And all of a sudden, there was some spinning zen that I keep hearing about. And it was lovely.

I’m also knitting up a swatch with my single from last week, just to see how it looks. I had this idea of making it into something, but I’m not super happy with the way this yarn knits up. Knit flat, the gauge is so inconsistent that the edges look very uneven. I may try knitting it in the round to see if that makes a difference. I don’t like untidy edges in my knitting, so I’m not sure if I will be able to use this yarn for anything real. Which is fine. This is all supposed to be a learning experience at this point.

My pink handspun swatchHowever, I am absolutely over the moon with how well the colors turned out. I love the yarn ever more knitted up than I did in the skein. I think getting to dye my own handspun is going to be one of my favorite parts of spinning! It is such a pretty pink that it seems a shame to not use it for something. It looks really good next to my face, I think it would make a lovely headband for me. So if anyone has tips on knitting with thick and thin yarn, please let me know. I’m afraid that there is probably too much difference between the thick and the thin bits to be workable, but if you have tips or patterns, I’d love to hear them.