The Second of Four

Since I haven’t managed to do a noteworthy amount of knitting, I am going to talk about my second spinning class! This week I managed to be late again, but I claim no fault in this as it was snowing like no tomorrow. There was a point where all the traffic had completely stopped, I think people must have been frightened to continue because of the blowing snow.


This week we learned plying. Our homework from last week was to continue making singles so we actually had something to ply this week. For those who don’t know, plying is when you take two single strands you have spun and twist them together. The very first class, our teacher stressed that how you twist your singles is important because it affects how you ply those singles together. If you are spinning your singles to the left, you need to ply them to the right. If you spin them to the right and ply them to the right as well, you will just untwist all the work you’ve just done.

Lazy Kate

Plying didn’t actually take too long to learn, then we were taught how to use a niddy-knotty to skein it, then moved onto the drum carder. The drum carder is how you make roving. We started with merino wool and alpaca; if you are working with a blend you are supposed to weigh out the amounts of each you put into it and work it though the drum carder in order to mix it up properly.

Drum Carder 2

We just eye-balled the amounts and worked the fiber through the drum carder to learn how to use it. It looks somewhat like a medieval torturous music box, so it can be a little intimidating to get started. Once you’re onto it though, it is easy as pie.
We sent enough fiber through the drum carder to get us through the next week at least. Next time, we are going to learn how to card manually, with the combs.

Drum Carder

I wonder if it would have been better to learn combing first, so we would really appreciate the drum carder once we got to it, but the teacher is very knowledgeable and I am sure she has this down to a science.
We are also going to learn to use drop spindles next week, which I am looking forward to, partly because I won’t have to pack up the spinning wheel and lug it all the way to Kitchener!
I’ll save the knitting I’ve done this week, for next weeks post… that way it will seem like I am getting a lot more done than I am. I am hoping that my week won’t be crazy busy and I’ll actually be able to relax and knit a bit!