Saturday, June 30, 2012

The sweater project: step two, spinning the wool

The sweater project continues. When spinning, my default yarn seems to be a two-ply with a gauge from fingering weight to sport weight. However, I want to follow the sweater pattern as written and not do a lot of calculations. Since the pattern calls for a gauge of 4 1/2 stitches per inch on size 7 to 8 needles (which is more like a worsted weight - thicker than fingering and sport weights), I'll need to change my default ways to spin a different weight of yarn.

Now, there are a lot of ways to spin yarn. Some of the basic ways are spinning it woolen or worsted, but then you can also ply it. Will it be a two ply, three ply, four ply? Or maybe not ply it at all and leave it a singles?

Also, what ratio will the yarn be spun with? I have three whorls for my wheel and they each have two different ratios, together they range from five twists per inch all the way up to 20 twists per inch.

After a lot of experimenting, spinning up different small samples and knitting gauge swatches, I decided upon a single ply, spun worsted at a ratio of five twists per inch. At the gauge I need, this seemed to give me the softness and amount of drape I wanted in the knitted samples.

And so the spinning commenced, and as of today, all two pounds of the dyed, superwash BFL has been spun into eight skeins of worsted weight singles yarn. I'm hoping the gauge is consistent enough throughout all of the skeins so that the knitting proceeds without hiccups. Fingers crossed! As I've said before, this is all a learning process.

Next step; begin knitting!


Adrienne said...

That's quite a process - can't wait to see the finished product!

Anonymous said...

What a sweet daughter.

ICQB said...

7Hi Adrienne!

I can't wait, either : )

ICQB said...

Hi Anonymous!

Oh, yes. Sweet and humble.