27) Purple patch

Yesterday was an awesome postal day.  I received my awesome new spindle (a Natalie silk spindle in purpleheart wood), and not one, but two wonderful batts from Franquemont Fibers – also in shades of purple.  Oddly, these were both ordered, from the US, exactly a month apart.  Customs have been holding my little spindle hostage!

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Notice anything odd about the photo above?  One spindle, two batts, and… a plughole?!  Yes.  J's Dad is currently staying with us, and the boys are, together, refitting our whole bathroom; floor to ceiling, suite to walls.  This has at least something to do with the sheer overwhelm I've been feeling recently, as well as the lack of fiber-y activity, because my studio is out-of-bounds and the living room is full of boxes and tools.  Using the new sink as a photographical background was just a whimsy, really, but in terms of colour and lighting, it's one of the best I've ever taken.  A bit of vignetting from the curve of the bowl, and an errant highlight over to the left, but otherwise… move over, lightboxes!

Anyway, you can't leave a new spindle unchristened, and indeed, Natalie came with a little pouf of rayon/tussah fibre, according to the note slipped into the box.  I can tell that Natalie and I are going to be friends, because this was the result:

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Around two metres of two-ply, around fingering weight.  We played together well right from the start; she spins fast, though not particularly long, and I might have to learn to draft faster to keep up, but I can see how she will be perfect for spinning long-staple fibre into high-twist yarns, just as advertised.

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This was my first time spinning anything with rayon in it, and it definitely changed the character of the tussah (which I have spun with quite a bit).  It felt crunchy and squeaky, rather than soft and fluid, and I suspect that it needs slightly less twist than pure silk if you want to keep any softness and drape in the finished yarn.  I definitely prefer pure silk, but this was a lot of fun.  Yum!

2 comments


  • Imagine, that. A spindle just for silk! Looks like it took you know time at all to get the hang of it. And that purple fiber! Yum!

    18th March 2010
  • Oooh–I really need to get my spindle out & give it a try. I got it for Christmas in 2008 and have been too worried about ruining the lovely alpaca that came with it. But if silk could be involved……

    1st April 2010

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