Day 4: Combing and Worsted Spinning

My brain hurts and I’m about ready to fall over.

Oh no, this is a GOOD thing. I’ve learned so much in the last 4 days! Today we worked some more on spinning and prepping fibre for worsted. Karen also explained to us some formulas we can use in order to spin consistent yarn and how to replicate it. I wasn’t able to fully wrap my head around it because she only had a short time (in the grand scheme of things) to explain it. It’s something that I could see my inner perfectionist practising regularly once we get it figured out!

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Fibre prepared to be spun worsted

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Worsted on the wheel

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Here we are adjusting the amount of twist in each sample. All three of these samples are the same grist (same amount of fibre) and drawn out the same. The sizes vary because of the amount of twist I put in. Can you guess which has the most and which has the least?

Next we talked about combing the fibre, another way to prepare it for spinning worsted yarn. I have to say that I really like it, especially when compared to carding. It just seems to move along quick and give a nicer, more consistent result.

Dang nabbit, I’ve added something else to my “wantwant” list…

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Hand combs with a distaff (yes, that is a seashell). After the fibre is combed, it’s pulled through a distaff to make it into roving. It’s absolutely beautiful to spin with.

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These are some serious, gigantor combs. I was nervous about taking an eye out with these babies… Okay, maybe not. But the ends on them are very sharp and pointy. They do work really well though and the results are gorgeous. I had an easier time using the distaff with these than with the hand combs. But I’ll just have to suck that up because I’ll be getting hand combs a lot sooner than a set of these seeing as they’re pretty pricey

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The drum carder. I couldn’t recall if I shared a picture of this or not. This is totally on the “wantwant” list… It makes carding so much quicker!

And last, but not least… I experienced a first today. I purchased my very first fleece EVER! It’s soaking in my tub right now. I couldn’t resist. It’s black with brown flecks. It’s certainly going to keep me busy! I can’t wait to see how this spins up πŸ™‚
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One more day *sigh*

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4 thoughts on “Day 4: Combing and Worsted Spinning

  1. You make this seem so simple and that is probably because you love it and it comes naturally for you. Wonderful explanations. Please keep this up!
    I don’t know anything about spinning, but could you tell me why you soak the fleece?

    Thank you!

    -Celina

    • You don’t always wash the fleece ahead of time (alpaca for example). Other fleeces you do. This one was straight off the sheep, so there was still some dirt and debris in it. Aside from that, there was also a lot of lanolin, which is the oil that sheep produce that is found in their fleece. Some is okay, but if you have too much, you fibre will be sticky and hard to work with. You also have to be REALLY careful washing the fleece. You wash it in REALLY hot water, so that means that you don’t want to move it around or else it will felt. Pretty delicate process. I hope that answers your question πŸ™‚

      I’m glad you’re enjoying the explanations. If you ever have some time on your hands, you may be interested in my fibre arts course experiences too. I did many posts the same way.

    • The one more day was in reference to my course LOL Fortunately, I have a busy weekend ahead, so I’m HOPING that my fleece will be dry and ready to play with by the beginning of the week πŸ˜‰

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