It has been a long time coming, but I have finally finished the bright rainbow singles that have taken forever and day to spin. The bobbin is plump full of mixed wool of lovely colors that must now be put into a skein before giving them several rounds of fiber abuse so the final kinks can relax. After torturing the skein with alternating hot and cold water, I will take out my frustrations as I whack the skein on the deck railing.
This might sound excessively cruel, but it’s how the springy singles settle down. As long as I don’t agitate the yarn while it’s in the hot water it won’t become a felted disaster. This skein is mixed wool and not something more delicate such as merino.
So What is the Process?
I let the singles rest on the bobbin for a few days. Then I wound them onto the niddy noddy where I discovered, to my disappointment, that there was only 472 (3.936 oz.) yards on this skein. The original has 590 (3.968 oz.) yards. There is a difference of 118 yards (0.032 oz.). The total yardage of the two skeins is 1062 yards so I shouldn’t be too unhappy. Besides, with all the distractions and disappointments going on in my life while I was spinning this roving, I should have expected that this wasn’t going to be as consistent as the first skein.
**Note: In hindsight (a few minutes later actually) the skein with more yardage weighs slightly more so the difference isn’t as bad as I originally imagined. Whew!
Since my plan is to crochet a lacy shawl, I will alternate each skein in the rows so if there is a visible inconsistency it will be somewhat hidden. And speaking of turning these two skeins into a lacy shawl, what pattern shall I use? Oh the problems of being a spinning crocheter!
Now onto the Fulling Process
I found a blog post by Jobo Designs on fulling yarn. She does a great job of explaining the reasons behind this finishing technique as well as the basic steps.
I usually full my yarn in the bathroom because it’s closest to the hot water heater. This time I did the hot part in a large plastic container and the cold in the sink. It works much better to keep the two temperatures as far apart as possible. I don’t usually keep ice cubes in the freezer so adding them to the cold water wasn’t an option.
Questionable Yarn Treatment Practices
Now comes my favorite part; however, it also makes other people question my sanity. I took the skein outside and after carefully making sure that the ties kept the strands separate, I began whacking the yarn on the deck railing. Three whacks on each of the four corners of the skein and quite a bit of grunting happened during this step. Then I gave it one more pull on each of the two ends to put the yarn into place before hanging on the shepherd’s hook to dry.
As you can see in the photo, the yarn is not 100% perfectly balanced, but it is much better than singles I have done in the past. I’m slowly mastering spinning which makes me quite proud of myself.
Have you ever spun yarn you intended solely for singles? How did it come out? Did you full it? Or did you get frustrated with what looks like a huge disaster? Let me know in the comments below.
Have an excellent day!