Episode 126 Live: Knit City, Twist Direction & more


Thank you for being here today, especially those who were able to make it to the Live Stream. I appreciate your time spent here in this place and me. I hope you feel most welcome because you are welcome here.

In today’s show, I re-cap a bit about this weekend’s Knit City. It was incredible and I feel so inspired about my Make Nine for 2020. There was so much to take in! I have our next Breed & Colour Study to announce and I will link to the video post of Wool n’ Spinning Radio for our patron community. I will post the colours and braids ASAP – I’m just waiting on Katrina to photograph everything! I’m excited to share a combination Breed & Colour Study reflection and Spinning Growth with you. And finally, I have some works in progress and finished objects to share! Enjoy the full, packed show this week.

Knit City, Vancouver, BC

Breed & Colour Studies // Spinning Growth

Katrina and I announced our next iteration of Breed & Colour Studies on Wool n’ Spinning Radio on October 1st. If you missed it, there’s a choice of video or audio format this month – let us know what you think! More information to come with links and ordering information as soon as Katrina has recovered from Knit City. Stay tuned!

Today’s Breed & Colour Studies is a double-header with our Spinning Growth segment! This experience just makes my heart sing! Let’s hear what Kathy experienced and have a chat.

Dagamba (Kathy, post no. 142) shares the following:

I have a spinning growth experience – its kind of funny and somewhat embarrassing that it took me this long to figure out what was going on… but here it is:

I had a great idea. I was excited to see how the recent neutral Breed and Color studies fiber might play out in my project idea, and…unfortunately, I was in a hurry. These are words that never bode well.

I had never spun Dorset before and so besides working with an unknown fiber, I was also trying to get the yarn finished before leaving for summer vacation. My goal was a significant quantity of 2-ply light fingering weight yarn. My singles seemed to be going very well and I dove into plying with my deadline clearly looming. I knew something was wrong when I skeined up the yarn as it was incredibly twisty, I think I even laughed out loud when I took it off the skein winder!

Rather than wondering if I had done something wrong, I just made a quick assumption that it must be the new fiber or that I had added more twist than I thought I did. Finishing the yarn always helps, right?? So rather than taking a step back, I plowed ahead and soaked and snapped the yarn, which remained FULL of kinks after washing. I weighted the yarn while drying and after it was dry, I noticed that the plys were not staying twisted, and the yarn was very wirey.

Again, rather than stepping back, I tried to knit with it, not a fun experience, and then gave up in frustration. That yarn has been sitting on my desk ever since late June and I have been wondering about what went wrong. By now, of course you have guessed that I failed to use the opposite twist angle while plying. In my haste, I made a rookie mistake. Both the singles and the plied yarn were plied with Z twist. I have been spinning for several years now…and it has taken me this long to figure this out…hmmm…. Obviously this was a result of hurrying the process and not taking the time to pay attention to the warning signals that were right in front of me. Once the damage was done, my disappointment in not being able to follow through on my project meant that the yarn just sat on my desk.

Over the last few weeks I have been trying to clear out some projects and this needed to be dealt with. I still had some singles from the original spin and so I plied those up using the center pull ball method. These behaved perfectly fine and, after a soak and a snap, I decided that I needed to try to salvage the original wirey yarn. I sent a sample back through the wheel, plying in the opposite direction, and then soaked and snapped it. It seems there is a solution and my project may be back on track! I will continue to re-ply the original yarn and push forward with a much more satisfying yarn! Lesson learned!

Photo below is one of the original balls of wire-y yarn and the re-plied sample.

Here are photos of the same yarn (left is wirey original yarn) before and after re-plying.

  • Understanding our direcitons of twist and how it affects our finished yarns is so important – this proves that!
  • The Dorset was able to withstand going back through the wheel and looks as amazing as it would have being plied once – that’s a testimony to amazing fibre.
  • Thank you for your humility in sharing, Kathy. I really appreciate it!

Works in Progress

Mariechen by Isabell Kramer – Ravelry project page here

  • Clun Forest spin, ripped and re-knit
  • Alternating skeins
  • Loving this stitch patterning with this yarn!
  • 00mm needles for close gauge – knitting size S

Finished Objects

Assymetrical Tea Towels by Jane Stafford Online Guild v2.0

  • Need to be hemmed!
  • Weaving these for the second time
  • Super happy to work these up again – excited for the results
  • Added in some 2/2 twill to play around
  • Working on it when I have time/energy/space
  • Loving the floor loom & feel of working on a larger loom – think I’m going to love weaving on this loom for a long time!

Sparks of Grey by Melanie Berg – Ravelry project page here

  • Handspun mill ends from SpinCycle Yarns in October 2014, had bought from Knit City that year
  • Ready to be washed and blocked this week


Epic Cloth Challenge – Handwoven Scout Tee

  • 2/8 cotton, warped up the Leclerc Jack Loom
  • 18EPI & 18PPI
  • Just getting started on sleying the reed!
  • More to come on The Wool Stream tomorrow. Link here for those who’d like to learn more and join
  • Affiliate link to the School of SweetGeorgia here


Be sure to sign up for the Wool n’ Spinning Newsletter at welfordpurls.com

Unbraided – EBOOKS available here & book orders can be made here.

Maker Mornings to Celebrate our Three (!!) Year Anniversary

  • For more, please head to this post on Patreon for dates & times
  • All patrons are invited to join us this summer as we explore some of my making together in a Live Stream
  • Currently, we are working towards meeting this goal on Patreon to make these a regular part of our months – think of this as a taster!

Changes to the publishing schedule means a steady drip of content all month! Please watch your Patreon emails for content that you are subscribed to as the month unfolds. At the moment, patrons of Wool n’ Spinning Radio EARLY RELEASE is available, as well as the monthly teaching content for ALL patrons!

Katrina and I made a really cool video of Wool n’ Spinning Radio this month – check it out here.

This month, our 51 Yarns SAL this month is all about further understanding yarn structure, namely 2- and 3-ply yarns! Please check out this post for the intro VLOG.

How I Spin this month is about finishing off our current Breed & Colour Studies. I’m knit my way through the yarns and share my FOs! Watch your Patreon notifications for the posts as they come available!

Support the Show for small business owners – information on the blog and/or email me directly for more.

Thank you so much for joining me today! I hope you enjoyed it. I look forward to seeing some of you tomorrow morning at the same time for the bi-monthly Wool Stream – I hope you are able to join us. Until then, Happy Spinning!

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