Sunday, July 5, 2009

My New Best Friend....

That would be my Salad Spinner, probably one of the original ones, imported from France by Moulinex in probably 1976. Back then, BK (before kids), I worked for a major department store in Denver and worked my way up to be a buyer in the Preteen department. That is a department that doesn't exist anymore with the advent of unisex styles, but it was for those girls who were too cool to be kids anymore, and not cool enough for the Juniors department. I was lucky enough to get to go to NYC twice a year for Seasonal Buying trips, and I purchased this salad spinner for myself at Macy's. At that time Macy's was a big deal...they had the parade and all and were not in every city from coast to coast. Carrying that back in my carry-on was a real hassle, but I thought I was the coolest thing ever. Of course, within a few months, salad spinners were everywhere, and like everything else, they are mostly made in China. So, I guess mine is nearly an over 30 years old and still spinning like a charm. Now that salad comes in a bag, it has been re-purposed as a spin dryer for my spun yarn after washing and setting the twist. Here is a skein of the Ashland Bay merino fiber after a good spin.

I have spun up 5 skeins of this fiber for a total of about 1 lb. Not all in the last two days, but over the last several weeks. I am really liking how it is coming out, and it will make a very soft and warm sweater. One pound to go...

For a change, I decided to start another spinning project from my stash: JulieSpins alpaca, merino and silk in the color Enchanted Seas. This fiber wants to be much finer..lace weight, so it will be slow going. I guess I will switch off between the two projects to stay motivated during the Tour de Fleece. I discovered that my satellite company is not carrying the channel that has the Tour de France (or else that is one of the channels we lost when we changed out subscription to save a few bucks) Catching up on my DVR with the season of ER, In Treatment, and True Blood will have to keep me entertained during my spinning through the 26th.

There was so much VM (vegetable matter), ie hay in this 100% alpaca fiber I purchased earlier this year at a local alpaca Festival that everytime I spun or handled the fiber, I had to vacuum.

When I thought I got it all while drafting, there was more during the spinning. Then there was tons more when I wound the singles into a center-pull ball to ply it. Then when I plyed it, even more came out. Still not sure if I got it all, but after several washes and soaks, it is the softest yarn ever. It is two-ply and about 275 yards. It hasn't told me yet what it wants to grow up to be.

One last thing. I just couldn't resist getting a second basket for my spinning, presumably to keep organized in the family room. It is amazing how much stuff spreads out all over the room. It was pretty misshapen when I brought it home, so I hosed it down and reshaped it, and now I really love it.


Tekgirl said...

Mmmmm yarn. I am jealous of your spun wonders. I recently started thinking about the whole spinning thing- I think I finally get what the appeal is, especially when I see nice yarn like yours!

Terri said...

That alpaca looks so yummy. I will begin spinning my very first alpaca for Tour De Fleece tomorrow.

Was it diffucult to reshape your basket? The neighborhood PCC has a basket that I have eyeing, but it is all wonky. I am afraid to bring it home.