Monday, February 27, 2006

SkipNorth vs PluckyFluff.

As many of you are aware, I spent the weekend at Haworth attending the SkipNorth gathering. It was a great weekend, full of fibre talk and wine and fibre shopping and cake and knitting and...well, there was a lot of things going on. A LOT. I`m knackered. Totally. We never stopped except to sleep. Even when we were eating we were still talking. (Well, not quite...you`d be eating and someone else would be talking.)

There`s an overview of what we did on Alex`s Blog. She took much better pix than I did, especially of the SkipNorth cats. (In fact I took very few photos because I was too busy talking and shopping most of the time, so I`m going to shamelessly steal them from other folk as I go.) We...the Scottish contingent, that is...had a bit of an epic drive down on Friday morning which involved a fairly lengthy compulsory detour to avoid the roadwork closures, plus getting lost in what I think was Bradford a couple of times. Fortunately Alison was navigating, not me, so we did actually arrive mid afternoon. If it had been me navigating we would have been in Wales by now.

There were three workshops running, during the afternoon...making stitch markers, small felted flowers and bags and spindle spinning. I was naturally attracted to the spindle spinning first, because I`m mince with a spindle. I bought my first wheel two weeks after my first spindle because I wanted to produce more than half a yard of yarn per hour. So I thought it might be a good idea to go to the spindling workshop and learn to spindle properly.
As it turned out I did indeed learn a lot, but it wasn`t going to be about conventional spindling. Nope. The workshop was run by Nic, she of the notorious Mermaids Nipples fame. She had decided to teach us how to spin alternative yarn.

Naturally I got too excited to take any pictures of anyone elses efforts but this is what I made.....



This was made by (I hope I got this right, Nic!) wrapping a cotton core yarn with contrasting commercial roving and every so often adding embelishments such as Angelina fibres, lurex fibres, silk nubbins, short lengths of interesting commercial yarns, feathers, sequins and beads strung on a thread etc etc and catching them between the cotton core thread and the wrapping fibre as we spun. This was quite a tricksy little operation requiring the usual three hands when learning to spin, but at least with using the cotton core we weren`t dropping the spindles every five seconds. I did go for the interesting novelty effect of adding my hair to the wrapping fibre a couple of times and had to be cut free at least once, but apart from that it was huge fun and I`m deeply proud of my first effort.



Ain`t it something? (I`m not sure what exactly, but whatever it is, I like it.)

And as modelled by my glamorous female assistant....



Pluckyfluff, eat your heart out. (Though I promise I`m going to order your book.)

5 comments:

Amie said...

What fun! And what a charming model you have!

I often add my own hair, as well as the hair of all the four-legged men in my life... you know, for that certain je ne sais quois....

Your yarn looks beautiful!

Woolly Wormhead said...

Your yarn looks beautiful! I walked away forgetting to take a photo of mine - doh.

PluckyFluff's book is amazing, if a little expensive. Totally worth it for the inspiration, though.

Was great to have met you and put a name to the blogger ;) And I'm really gratefull for all the spinning advice x

Zippianna said...

I love it! That's just the sort of yarn I'm after, too. Your assistant is a cutiepie. All I have is DH and he's got a big grey beard so is useless as a model. Glad you had so much fun!

gourdongirl said...

Youir spinning looks great. This week SKIPnorth, next week .......

You'd give pluckfluff a run for her money.

Nickerjac said...

The finished result looks fab and the description sounds better than anything I could have written.
Enjoyed meeting you all and look forward to the next time.