I finished spinning the brown alpaca pictured in my previous post. I ended up with two ~6 ounce skeins of worsted weight. One skein I took back to the art center as a thank you and the other I think will be enough yarn for either a warm winter hat or as part of a patterned sweater.
When I dropped off the skein of brown alpaca yarn, the art center director dragged me into the storage room and insisted I take some of a beautiful black alpaca fleece to try spinning. So in addition to the tan/white mixture that I haven’t spun yet, I now have some black alpaca fleece. I’ll save some of what I spin, again, to gift to the art center weaving program, but it is wonderful fun to be working with this beautiful fleece. Another friend, who raises llamas, saw that I was spinning the alpaca; she says she will save me some llama to try when she shears in May. I’ve never spun llama, so this is wonderful.
Here’s a photo of the lovely black fleece that I want to try next. It’s fairly clean and long staple, so I may be able to spin it from the lock without carding it. We’ll see if that works. I didn’t wash the brown alpaca before spinning; the finished skein washed beautifully in a bit of Dawn detergent. Notice in the background of the photo all the portraits I’ve been working on. Members at the art center have a ‘Friday Figure Group’ which meets to paint portraits of local folks. I love attempting portraits using the palette knife and pastel.
I found directions for using the Bohus knitting technique in a book of hats and mittens that I’ve been trying patterns from. It’s a technique that uses only two colors of yarn in a row, but because of the slipped stitches it uses, the patterns that result look as if more than two colors are in a row. I saw this as a chance to use up some bits of yarn that are hanging around, bits that aren’t enough for making anything by themselves, but are enough for a few rows in a pattern. The
white is hand spun yarn that was left over from a prior project.
The purple and gold are lichen dyed yarn. The hat knit to a larger gauge than I would have liked (another time I would make the crown less high), but with with the band turned up, it’s fine. The photo is of the hat before it was washed and blocked. I think I will try a few more of these hats as a way of using up some small amounts of very special yarn that can’t be used in larger projects. Maybe I’ll use some of the new alpaca yarn in a few of these hats.