View Full Version : New and a little nervous
09-03-2009, 07:20 AM
Iam new to this forum and a little nervous so please forgive me if I make a mistake in this post.
I just started spinning on a drop spindle and I'm having a little difficulty. Everytime I try to draft while spinning it feels like I'm just tearing the fibres and I end up with a big mess behind my hand that's holding the mass. I've watched loads of vids on the web about this and I just can't seem to get the hang of it. Am I doing something wrong?
Also the yarn I did manage it spin, after I set the twist and dried it with a weight hanging from it, it still twists back around itself which as I understand it is not how it is supposed to be and also in the yarn itself are areas where the yarn is all twisty not straight like its supposed to be. I really like the spinning but maybe its just not for me?
Any advice you have would be wonderful.
Thanks so much,
Hugs and Bubbles,
09-04-2009, 08:06 AM
No need to be askeered of us, sure we may be a little twisted (spinners) or warped (weavers) but besides that, we're just human. :)
It sounds like you might have the 'newbie death grip' on your fiber. Hold it gently, merely supporting it. If your fiber is drafting hard, hold your hands farther apart while drafting. If your roving is compacted, your may have to un-compact it by gently pulling it sideways before you draft it length wise.
You might also want to try pre-drafting it, before you try spinning it.
What type of fiber are you working with? Where did you get it? Some fibers are more suited to felting than spinning.
It also sounds like you are over twisting the yarn. Common thing for the new spinner. Don't worry about it. Don't worry about the thick and thin, underspun & overspun spots either. (It's called Art Yarn!)
Some folks recommend weighting the yarn while drying. I'm not one of those. Since wool has memory, you may knit / crochet / weave an item, then once you wet it to block it, the yarn will go back to it's unweighted twist.
Start off with these hints and try again (and again and again) and see if it is easier.
09-04-2009, 09:38 AM
Thanks for the advice. The fibre I'm working with is merino and its in commercial rovings. I do think it is fairly compacted. Is this unsuitable for spinning? Should I re-wet my yarn again so, before I try knitting with it? Will the over twist problems come with practice and can I knit with my over twisted yarn or should I just put it in the 'my first but useless' box?
09-05-2009, 06:14 PM
Commercially prepared merino roving is great for spinning.
Before you try spinning it the next time, 'fluff it up'. It will draft better.
Definitely make yourself something out of your first yarns! Perhaps a smallish bag to hold spinning or knitting items.
Over twisted yarns are 'Energized' and will create a wonderful item. Thick & Thin yarns are 'Art Yarn' and equally beautiful.
Have you watched Abbey Franquemont's video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=drXid5cT0y8)? Are your trying to draft and spin all at the same time? Try drafting your fiber, then putting a whole lot of twist in a short length of fiber, park the spindle then move your hand up the fiber to allow the twist to go up into the roving. When the twist is exhausted, wind it on, then repeat.
09-07-2009, 04:19 AM
Sorry to be completely dense but what does 'fluff it up' mean? Thanks I will trying the park method. Usually I pre-draft the fibre to the thickness I want it then spin it that way I don't draft at all when spinning but I feel that, that's somehow very inefficient.
09-08-2009, 09:18 AM
Fluf it up ... pull the roving width wise befor drafting.
09-08-2009, 09:41 AM
I just started spinning in June. I used park and draft for a few weeks until I felt comfortable letting the spindle hang. It just happened one day without thinking. I gave up severe predrafting quite quickly and found my spinning improved dramatically. I now just "fluff" the fibers a bit if they feel compacted and go for it.
I am spinning for a 3 ply fingering weight and found that for me the weight of the spindle affected how easily I can spin very thin singles. I most commonly use a half oz and a .8 oz spindle for my singles and save my heavier beginner spindles which are 1.2 oz and 1.8 oz for plying.
Hang in there it's worth feeling like you'll never be a spinner, but once it clicks it is a lot of fun. I got a big thrill when I first wore my handspun, handknit socks.
09-08-2009, 10:16 AM
Thanks for all the great advice. I think I will buy a lighter spindle and see how that feels. Will have to put my spinning on hold for a few days tho. Thanks everyone.
Hugs and Bubbles,
11-05-2009, 08:32 PM
I stilll working on mine but have a plan of action and great to see some freebies up for offer..yeeh