UndyedYarnpire’s Fiber Opera

October 21, 2009


Filed under: equipment, spin — UndyedYarnpire @ 2:52 pm

A rather surprising thing occurred while I was composing a “which should I buy” post that was really a “gloom and doom” in disguise. I realized I had not spun since May. I did a little bit immediately after Yarn School; I was looking to get back on that horse before the fear set in and managed that. But for the most part attending Yarn School stripped all the joy out of spinning.

I knew I was still upset about the fiasco, but I had not realized how much that had permeated my perspective. (I am the phantom disagree-er whenever someone says something positive about Yarn School anywhere I see it on Ravelry.)

Today I finished what was on the bobbin. Then I plied it with the matching bobbin (from May). I also spun some extra oatmeal single for my birthday fiber leftovers and from which I will make a Navajo ply for my Mobius. (I attempted to cast on with my 2-ply oatmeal BFL + birthday merino, and it just is not durable enough to withstand multiple attempts. I need to frog the cast-on plus .5 rows, but that yarn is three breaths from dissolving already, so I need something that might blend in seamlessly but still be super-durable. )

I feel a lot better. I am calmer. I feel more energetic and accomplished.

I can admit to being a mediocre knitter. I am adventurous and I believe I can knit anything, which makes me more than a beginner for sure, but I am never going to be an advanced knitter without considerably more effort. I do not care to put in that effort, so I know that I have to admit I am not a great knitter.

I am already a mediocre spinner. I know I can do anything if I try. I know my yarn is not perfect, but I have extremely consistent yarn (to the point that the bobbin I finished today and the one I did in May matched in terms of thickness and twist.) I have a real feel for when my plying is coming out right, now that I have stopped trying to get that underspun fluff anyway. The yarn I am knitting my sweater out of is really nice yarn, very consistent across 4 separate balls.

That made me realize, even with the knitting, it is the effort that matters. Whether it takes me 3 months or 3 days to finish a project is all irrelevant. I can do that. Then I realized there are really advanced knitters who cannot do anything without a pattern. I almost never use a pattern.  They might be faster than I am, but I know how to find my own way through the darkness. I like having my eyes open.

I am considering buying a drop spindle. I made one years ago, but hate it. I am thinking that good tools might help. I want one of the Tracy Eichheim dragon spindles. There is some weirdness because I have to deal with yet another fiber-person who wants a check. No one takes checks. No reply to the email, but the website was changed in response to my question. I wish there was a price list for some of the other designs. [ETA, there was an immediate reply, but it went to the spam folder that gmail was hiding from me.]

Now for the original topic, do you think I should get a top whorl or bottom whorl spindle? If I was buying one of the production spindles as well, what weight should I get?



  1. I’d definitely get a top whorl, 1 to 1.5 oz. You’ll probably take to it very well since you already spin on a wheel. (I was backwards myself, I spun on a wheel before mastering the drop spindle). Kundert’s are good spindles. Fast long spin, nice notch. Spunky Ecletic has them and their reasonable. My personel favorites are Bosworth’s at http://www.journeywheel.com. They spin forever! You’d want a midi. Have fun! (Both sites have paypal too!)

    Comment by Mary — October 22, 2009 @ 11:44 pm

    • I heard a rumor that bottom whorl spindles are easier, but the constant half-hitching would make me crazy.

      I saw your post about learning to spindle and your joy in your new fancy spindles. I went and looked at the Golding site because you liked them.

      Comment by UndyedYarnpire — October 23, 2009 @ 7:11 am

      • I’ve never spun on a bottom whorl, but like you said…I think the constant half hitching would make me nuts. The Golding is super nice too, I love mine! It’s a bit heavy though at 1.9 ozs. I like to spin really thin singles and navajo ply, so the lighter 1 oz spindles appeal to me. I use my Golding more for plying and thicker singles. The smaller ones would be good for thinner singles, I just got on a Bosworth kick. They are my favorite spindles.

        Comment by Mary — October 23, 2009 @ 9:12 am

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