The first day of Spinning First is behind me. One day of what I imagined would be this huge stash-busting, space creating epic. It’s not quite what I thought it would be. It’s more like spinning in first gear than spinning first. Since the goal was to be able to make it all fit into the allotted space, I started with something that couldn’t be put away because there was no room – so I’m a day in, and nothing has shifted yet. Technically, I haven’t made a dent. I started with a batt I got on the weekend – the batt that put me on this path in the first place, when I took it upstairs to join its woolly comrades and discovered the state of affairs. (For the moment, I choose to pretend that I didn’t know what was happening up there until it was all too late. Like that all the fibre I was buying/getting/procuring was a surprise nobody could have seen coming.)
It’s a batt from Inglenook Fibers. It turns out that there is no end to the ways my favourite nuns are super-crafty, and one of the sisters makes and sells batts, amongst other things. (The Convent is self-supporting. They all work to make that possible.)
This batt is my favourite kind of spinning, when I’m spinning just for fun. It’s called "Plum Tree" and it’s a mix of merino, romney, alpaca, bamboo, silk, Angelina, Firestar, silk noil and Starbright. With a mix like that, it won’t spin up into a perfectly smooth yarn, and that means that I’m absolved of trying to make it so. I can just churn along, seeing what happens – and that’s just what I did.
Those pretty singles will get plied over the weekend. I’m anxious to see what sort of yarn it makes. I didn’t sample first, I’m going for a full on surprise.
I admit that I thought I’d have more done, which is crazy, but it’s harder to put spinning first than I thought. I’m pretty set up for knitting – and it really is what I think of first when I have a little time. When I talk about getting a lot of knitting done, one of my tricks is to have it with me all the time. A row here, a round there, it adds up fast. I thought this weekend I’d try the same thing with spinning. My number one wheel has a home in the living room, I bet you’ve seen it lurking in pictures, it’s sort of in a corner. If I’m going to spin I pull it out and set it up in front of a chair (a chair that’s not really great for spinning) and put it away again when I’m not spinning. I try to put it away every time I walk away from it, because I’ve been trying to set a completely hopeless standard of tidiness for years. (It turns out it’s hopeless not just because of the people I live with, but me too. Devastating realization.) I’m going to leave it set up and good to go for a few days, to see if that makes a difference to my productivity.
I don’t like to think of myself as someone who could be put off of spinning by having to REACH for the wheel, but lets just see, shall we? I also like to think of myself as someone who isn’t lazy enough that I would paint around furniture, but it’s a different colour behind the piano anyway. (Don’t look at me like that. You’d never know if I hadn’t told you.) We shall see.