Last Wednesday I went knitting to the Baa and had a great evening. I chatted, I knitted, my sock got a lot of attention and I showed off the beginning of Portia so that people realise I can knit big projects and can think beyond socks. At this meeting, I invited myself to join some spinners (Caroline and Lucy) on their trip to a special spinning place. I was more curious about what the place was like than anything else. I certainly did not go with any intention of becoming a spinner.
Anyways, Sunday comes and we all go there and have a go at feeling the different wools, and admiring the different colours and I was decidely unsure of spinning until we went in this shed with different types of wool from different sheep and it was at this moment that I suddenly 'got' the appeal of spinning. You start with a product and can taylor it to whatever you want. I particularly liked the Wensleydale stuff because it had a really strong and different texture. It's not soft like Merino, but has some property I just loved. Caroline pointed out it is 'shiny' and as incongruous as that might seem with the fleece of a sheep, she's right; it is shiny.
Now, I've always known Caroline to be an evangelical of the knitting world. Afterall, she got Louise (of the infamous sock denial) into knitting socks. But, I didn't realise that she was working her magic on me and had a grand plan. "I'll spin you some Wensleydale sock yarn and you can spin me something, " Caroline said. "Ok," I said, thinking I would be spinning with the drop spindle I borrowed from her some time since.
Little did I know there was another plan. Later on, we went for a nice drink and it was at this moment that I was being converted as Lucy and Caroline talked about spinning. Caroline said, quite innocently, "I've got a spinning wheel in the back of my car, you can borrow that." I thought about that and decided to give it a go. I didn't question that Caroline might have a spinning wheel in the boot of her car, afterall I have lots of yarn in the boot of mine. It seemed plausable.
It was only when we went to Caroline's car and saw it strapped in the back of the car like a child that I realised someone had planned this all the time, and that someone had purposefully put that wheel in the back of her car, thinking that I might be going home with it. And I'm so glad she did. Lucy set it all up for me at my house and I've done a bit of spinning every night since.
In fact, as this spinny place is near my work, I've been back and bought over 300g of Cheviot because I ran out on Sunday.
I'm no good yet, but I'm getting the idea and I like the idea of dyeing and making my own sock yarn. I think that would be cool and I love the idea of something completely original. I'll post pictures of my attempts next time (all batteries in camera dead at the moment, sorry). I have dyed wool before, so that doesn't scare me, and Ezzie said he would buy me a wheel as a belated birthday present, so my outlay would be minimal. Caroline, I promise you, I will spin and dye you some yarn some time this year.