a good month

plied%20alpaca%2C%20closeup%20%28201002%29 - penny-and-eli.comI was very pleased and mildly surprised when I reviewed my spinning notebook and discovered that, yes, February had been a good month despite being sick for most of it.

Last month I spun for a just over 3.5 hours. It resulted in my finally finishing 2¾ ounces of alpaca I acquired at Maryland last year. Somewhere along the way I lost an ounce but gained 126.0 yards of a fingering weight yarn. Sir Shadow stole quite a bit, he makes my alpaca obsession look pale by comparison.

In any case, while I also spindled a good deal, my spinning time was mostly spent on notSqueaky.

I learned a lot last month. I’m hoping to sneak 5 minutes in (either at the wheel or spindle) today. It would be a first for the month and would make me really happy.

My spinning is still very much that of a beginner.

I no longer stress about which way the wheel or spindle should go. I’ve finally gotten it down to muscle memory. Please don’t ask me which way is left or right. I just do it. I’ve never been good with L/R things.

I did finally learn the need for different drafting techniques. Alpaca isn’t merino or BFL, two fibres I have the most experience spinning. My singles often felt like rope while I was going.

It softened up and came out pretty but I definitely need to work on drafting techniques. I think it is time for me to stop trying to figure it out on my own and acquire a copy of the amazing Abby‘s new DVD, Drafting: The Long And Short Of It. How do I draft now? Probably as most beginning spinners draft: whatever works. After reviewing a few articles in recent issues of Spin-Off, I think I drafted the alpaca with an American sliding, supported long draw (“Seven Drafting Techniques” by Jeannie Bakriges. Spin·Off, winter 2009).

I leave you with this screenshot out of iPhoto of what happened when I attempted to take photos. I have new scratches because he did not want to give up the alpaca. I don’t question his taste, I know he’s young, but he definitely needs to learn to share!

20100303%20shadow%20%26%20alpaca - penny-and-eli.com

Schedule Shift Notice:
Until April 12th I will try a revised schedule to hopefully improve writing and free up a bit of time for my back-logged Work and for pesach preparation. Who knows, I might even get a chance to finally redesign and relaunch my website. The schedule is as follows:
The posts will be split over two weeks, with a kitten post every Friday.
Week one: Monday books, Wednesday fibre, Friday kitten.
Week two: Tuesday cooking, Thursday words (house, garden, travel, &c), Friday kitten.
repeat until April 12th at which point I’ll decide if I’m going to continue this revised schedule or return to daily posting.