Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Jamaica color experiment

This color has been one of the strangest I have worked with.  It is a merino/mohair blend in the colorway called "Jamaica".  Here it is before spinning.

Lovely isn't it?  I just love how warm and friendly it looks.

That is until I started spinning it.  It was looking so muddy as a single on the bobbin.   Of course, if I really was that concerned about it, I would have spun it from the fold, but I am lazy, so this is what I got;

You would think I could get a better photo, but I couldn't for some reason.
Eh.  It's nothing like I was hoping for.  But you never know how it will turn out in the end, so let's continue.

I was thinking about plying this with another color to hopefully get the colors to pop a bit (especially the purple), so I spun up a few samples of various colors and plied them with the Jamaica.  Eh again.

Well - maybe they will look better knitted up.  So I made a swatch and came up with these;

Jamaica plied with teal
 Oh I like this.  The teal color really brings out the warmer colors of the Jamaica.  This is definitely in the running, but still not the ultimate yarn I was hoping for.

Jamaica plied with lilac
 Eh - this one I like - not so much.  Nothing is really coming to life here.  I think I'll pass...
Jamaica plied with fuchsia
 Ummmm - not my cup of tea.  PASS.
Jamaica plied with chocolate brown
Oh my.  This is absolutely lovely.  Very rich, yet understated.  I am very surprised at this one.  Definitely my favorite.  Lots more of this will be showing up soon.

Jamaica plied with fawn.  The very last two rows were knit with Jamaica plied upon itself.  You can barely see it.
The fawn is just not doing ANYTHING for the Jamaica. This is a definite PASS.

WOW - these sure look a LOT different than I thought they would.  The two colors that people seem to unanimously like are the teal and the chocolate brown.  I LOVE the brown. Oh swoon.  I was most disappointed with the fawn combination.  Yuck - It really looks dull and muddy.  No life to it at all. The fuchsia is just too -- fuchsia.  And the lilac/lavender color also looks dull.

But you know, the Jamaica plied upon itself actually brought out a bit of the colors I was hoping for.  The muddiness diminished some and more of the purpley colors are showing through.  After all this struggle I have decided to simply ply the Jamaica on itself - BUT, I do plan on a second run of the Jamaica plied with the chocolate brown.  Ohhh I can't wait!

So after all is said and done, here is the final result.  This yarn is pleading to become a woven blanket, with which I will graciously agree.

The yarn is still damp here - a little darker looking than it really is.

Up close.

At the wheel this month

The winter doldrums are still here with no sign of spring yet.... sigh.  Here is the view out the back window.

This does however lead to some fine spinning time.  At long last, I have managed to spend more than 2 minutes at my wheel.  Don't ask me how it happened, but it did, so I took full advantage of it.  Here is my latest spinning project:

This is a merino/mohair blend, "Bay Breeze" colorway.  I really like the green highlights in this blend.  Hopefully it shows in the final yarn.

And here is the finished yarn - a simple two ply (haven't measured the wpi yet).  The green didn't show the way I was hoping, but the yarn is still pretty.  I wish you could see it better but the camera I am using at the moment just doesn't want to give me a decent photo.  This one will have to do.

Saturday, March 05, 2011

My New Etsy Shop

I have opened my new Etsy shop!  My next project will be to create some new hand-dyed rovings and yarns.  Weeee!!!  This feels great!  I will post new additions to the shop on this blog as they are listed.

You can find Pioneer Handspinning on Etsy here - http://www.etsy.com/shop/PioneerHandspinning

I would love to hear your feedback as the shop develops.  Thanks!