Page 1


How to



Hand Spinning News

The email version of this newsletter may look much better online: There's an art to spinning just the right amount of yarn for your project. A little too much and you end up stashing a small amount because it's too precious to throw away. Not enough and you can spin some more - if you have more of the fibre, that is! One of our bloggers gets it spot on this month, but the theme runs through several other posts. A few posts appear this month on the theme of blending natural or dyed colours. This ties in nicely with some items about Jacob fleece. It's another bumper month, it's so good to have so many great articles and blog posts to choose from. So without further ado, read on for this month's selection. (photo above right: Kate Larson preparing a pasture for next year's grazing.

Top Stories Getting to know a Turkish spindle

Accidental Secrets

This month's best spindle shot shows Dani very neatly fitting as much yarn as she can on her beautiful black Turkish.

Yarnspider has made this gorgeus shawl using handspun in mixed fibres with embroidered detail.

Read more

Read more

Contents Blog posts from the new Yarndale show News and articles from around the web From the blogosphere Tips and tutorials Gallery Showing off some of the best images I've found this month Free patterns A selection of free patterns which will work well with handspun yarn Events Some dates for your diary Courses and tuition Where to go for a day, weekend or a week to learn or improve your skills

Yarndale 2013 Yarndale preparations What better way to start than with a behind-the-scenes view of the preparations?

Rippling silk If you've seen Katie of Hilltop Cloud at any of the shows this year, you may have seen this skein of her hand dyed and hand spun silk, and if you were at Yarndale you may have seen this finished shawl. She's made the shawl using the pattern Longfellow by Carinea Ferguson. She comments that this shawl's transparency makes it difficult to photograph but it looks beautiful. Explore Katie's blog for a more recent post about setting up her stand for the show and a flavour of the weekend.

Yarndale Liz of Knitting on the Green comments on some teething problems with parking and catering but didn't let it spoil "a really nice show" and will definitely go again. Here is her collection of photographs from the day.

Yarndale Eleanor of Knit Nottingham and her party had an "incredible day", here are her pictures and experiences.

Escape to Yarndale Anna had other things to do but couldn't resist the call of Yarndale. She and her little one found it an absorbing day. She praises the organisers and particularly enjoyed meeting online friends in the flesh.

A colourful riot In a post packed with pictures, Elseline has captured the variety of goods on display, yarn and fibre in all its forms as well as other crafts including braiding and lacemaking.

The Yarndale Bunting A special mention for the bunting which has featured in many of the Yarndale blog posts. There are many 'behind the scenes' pictures in this blog post of this enormous project. The stats are amazig. 582 parcels were received from 31 countries containing 6,212 triangles which made 1.25 km of bunting.

discuss any of this

News, resources and articles from around the web Worldwide Spin in Public Day Did you spin in public on 21 September? The Worldwide Spin in Public Day Facebook page has a great selection of pictures of people doing just that. In case you're not of the Facebook persuasion, Kate Larson has posted an article with a selection of pictures here in the Spinner's Connection

discuss any of this

From the blogosphere Masham Sheep Fair A mention for Masham which was the same weekend as Yarndale. Sassy Spinner visited both. Besides some of the shortcomings of the first Yarndale, she found it more orientated to knitters than spinners. She was delighted with Masham, "a terrific day out" and yielding some lovely raw fleece.

Handspun Sleeping Beauty Regular contributor sandandskycreations has made this colourful cowl from a gifted pattern. For the smaller amounts of colour she used oddments. A great idea for using up left-overs. She's rightly proud of it - she says "I've been wearing it since I've finished it"

Hand Spinning Welsh Mountain Fleece Welsh mountain wool is coarser and may be kempy. Fran reasons that fleece that protects a sheep against wild Welsh weather will make a cosy jumper for a human. She was pleased with her swatch and went on to make this cabled jumper. In this post she documents the progress of the jumper from locks through to washed garment. It's an enjoyable read, for speed she made 'fauxlags' and her notes about washing in the machine are interesting.

Knitting with handspun is fun filambulle finds it fun to be 'running against the yarn'. Something we spinners are familiar with. She sometimes uses the small amounts of left-over yarn to make small projects, but in this case - an improvised design based on the Age of Brass and Steam neckerchief - she had to use a small spinning swatch to bind off. Now that's being efficient with your fibre!

Getting to know my Turkish spindle Last month I featured a beautiful spindle photo from Dani of littlebobbins. She also has a gorgeous new turkish spindle and has been getting to know it with an online spin-along. She's enjoying packing the yarn onto the spindle very neatly and wonders how much she's going to be able to fit on without problems?

The finest in fibers Ewespecial thinks that silk is the "finest in fibers". Here she presents a series of pictures showing her progression from combed silk top through to very fine silk yarn ready to weave. Do click the link at the top of her article to read a fascinating feature from about the history of silk and the life cycle of the silk moth.

Blogging in Space Did that title grab you as much as it did me? Sometimes I feel that more funky art yarns are made for their own sake. That's arguably the definition of an art yarn, but personally I do like to see the fibre's journey through to finished garment. I highlighted Hazel's Bowtie yarn as part of the Tour de Fleece collection earlier in the year and I'm delighted to see her knitting it into a triangular shawl, perfect for time travel. She starts this post with a teaser opening paragraph of a story about a space-travelling spinner. Am I the only one who is eager to read more?

Seeking Autumn Designer Kate Larson and her sheep all enjoy the cooler Autumn air. It's good to see some informal photos of herself and her lambs in this article in which she re-seeds a pasture for her flock to enjoy next year.

Promises to Keep Araignee comments that "Jacob is the original self striping fiber". Earlier in this issue we had a post on different ways to spin and ply fibre containing different colours. Araignee has found that with the contrasting colours in Jacob fleece, you can control the colour by how much of the dark you feed into the carder.

Blending samples It's really useful to see a selection of different blending methods with samples of spun yarn from each, and that's the result of a 'blending day' at Sophie's local spinning group. Members brought along their drum carders, hackles, hand carders, combs for other members to try - a great idea for other groups?

Knitting with Jacob's Following on beautifully from talk of blending Jacob fleece and the various blending methods, is this post by Louise on KnitBritish. She believes that the colours have been blended to produce an even grey. She writes from a knitter's perspective, but there are some notes about blending and spinning, along with details of the Jacob breed and the qualities of the wool.

Restored great wheel Julia apologises for the settings on her camera playing up, but this picture caught my imagination. The ghostly and etherial effect seems perfect for showing this great wheel. Her father restored the wheel, which is shown off in this series of pictures, also including Julia in period costume. Words and pictures are from her day at Garfield Farm Museum's Harvest Days event.

discuss any of this

Tips and tutorials Sneak a little luxury into your spinning Anne Podlesak loves spinning angora. Not everyone finds it easy to spin the rabbitfluff but here Anne explains that mixing it with other fibres makes it easier to spin and makes a luxurious yarn.

Keeping fleece warm Araignee has been washing and dyeing fleece. She had an unexpected but pleasant surprise with her dyeing, and gives us a very good tip for scouring fleece - she uses a cool box because it keeps in the heat longer. Click through to read a post from her friend Melodye who bravely uses a top-loading washing machine.

Organizing your spinning stash I'm sure every one of us has a growing collection of fibre ready for spinning. Grace of SweetGeorgia Yarns has posted this useful list of tips about storing, sorting, protecting and keeping track of your spinning stash.

How can I combine two full spindles? Earlier, Dani of littlebobbins discussed fitting as much yarn as possible on a Turkish spindle. Here Amelia gives a tip for combining two or more spindle-spun cops into one big ball.

discuss any of this

Keeping this wheel spinning Your news here Are you a teacher, pattern designer, supplier, dyer? Would you like to reach the growing readership of thousands of hand spinners and at the same time help to support Hand Spinning News ? Read more

Gallery Sometimes just a picture is enough

Handdyed polwarth Looking good enough to eat is Yuko's handdyed polwarth.

Something for Autumn Perfect for the time of year, this yarn is from fibre called 'Pumpkin Spice'. Spun by Kat, The Wool Merchant's Daughter.

Ashford Fibre Mill - take a tour Here's a chance to take a virtual tour of Ashford's fibre processing mill in Milton, NZ It's hypnotic to watch the fibre travelling through the machines and it made me smile to see Kate giving a hug to a big bin of fluff.

Accidental Secrets Sarah the Yarnspider has made this gorgeus shawl using handspun in mixed fibres including wool, silk, alpaca and baby camel. What makes it really special is the free detail which she added using the rigid heddle loom as an embroidery frame.

Orenburg handspun scarf twistedspinner's Orenburg scarf is made using a mix of pygora goat with silk.

Bulky crochet shawl Jen made this triangular crochet shawl from her own bluky handspun in one day at the Squam Taproot Gathering. See the photostream for more images.

doll's shawl: Jacob ombre themousearmy spun this laceweight Jacob wool in the grease which she says is beautiful and light. She chose to make 'ombre' yarn, keeping colours separate for a long colour change.

Free patterns A selection of free seasonal patterns which will work well with handspun yarn.

Modern Cable Shawl In time for the cooler weather, this shawl is big and has chunky cables to trap warmth. It's a little ironic that Lion Brand have a commercial yarn called 'homespun' but I think this attractive seasonal pattern will be great for your actual homespun.

Cut & Paste Socks Knee socks are certainly suitable for the time of year. But this is no ordinary plain knee-high sock pattern, oh no. Again on the subject of spinning just the right amount, earthchick decided to take a different approach. She wasn't sure that this skein of autumnal-coloured handspun would stretch to a tall pair of socks. So she knit until she'd used the yarn, then cut the tube in half, added toes, cuffs and heels in a complementary yarn. She's produced a worksheet giving the details of her technique and has made it available as a free download at Ravelry. Many thanks to Stacey! (Follow the links from her blog for the download.)

Free eBook - Knitting Patterns for Cowls Five for the price of one (free...) I particularly like the Gobi cowl. As well as an opportunity to use those beautiful buttons you've been keeping for a special project, it uses an attractive cable / lace pattern. The pattern suggests using Yak but I would suggest any handspun luxury fibre. Requires free registration with Knitting Daily.

New treeline striped cardigan This is a classic pattern from Purl Bee that they have "rescued" and breathed new life into with some corrections and re-wording, an extra size and a slightly redesigned collar. It's simple but beautiful. The commercial yarn that the pattern suggests does look like handspun, so I'm sure that it would look just as wonderful in natural-coloured handspun.

Sugar Maple Hat by Katie Mack The Knitting Goddess has linked to the free pattern in her post, but I love her version in her own purple handspun. She says that the pattern is a basic hat but it "has so much room for modifying it and making it your own... Its super simple, but that way the random striping can shine".

Painting a blanket Knitsnthings suggests this free pattern as a great way to use up those odds and ends of handspun. I have a similar pile of left-over bits, too precious to throw away and I bet you do too?

Spice Trail from the East Spice Trail from the East was published by Knitty recently and has been a very popular pattern. biddypunk has made hers using yarn that she spun from raw dark fleece. It's her first sweater made entirely of her own handspun yarn. it's difficult to see the knitted detail in dark wool The thumbnail links to images on Flickr, the pattern is at I also selected free knit and crochet patterns over at HSN's sister publication, Purl Two Together. The new issue will be available very shortly. discuss any of this

Events 2013 Shetland Wool Week 7 - 13 October 2013 A busy weekend dedicated to celebrating Shetland wool and textile heritage. The full events list includes workshops, demonstrations, open studios, spinning, knitting, weaving and Britain's most northerly sheep.

Wool Week 14 - 20 October 2013, multiple activities throughout Britain Run by the Campaign for Wool with patron HRH The Prince of Wales. Wool Week 2013 will begin in the United Kingdom on October 14 with lots of events around the UK.

Bakewell Wool Gathering, Bakewell Agricultural Centre Saturday 19 and Sunday 20 October The Bakewell Wool Gathering is a new event for wool lovers in the heart of the Derbyshire Dales. There will be exhibitors, demonstrations of fibre crafts, plus a knitting and crochet help desk to help novice and expert alike. Part of British Wool Week.

Fibre Flurry - 26 and 27 October, Bournville, Birmingham The third year promises to be the best year yet. Workshops and exhibitors over two days

Courses and tuition Please let me know if you are or you know a tutor with a calendar of events. Cornwall: Audrey Durrant is heavily involved with the Cornwall Guild and works with the Rare Breed Survival Trust. She teaches spinning, basic weaving, is a hand dyer and gives talks and demonstrations. Find out more at Cumbria: Learn to Spin: BeginnerâÂ!™s Workshop at Cartmel Handspun. Course materials and equipment provided, includes coffee, healthy home-made lunch and tea. Courses are run at week-ends in the autumn and spring. For more details, contact Elaine Ware, email, phone 015395 33443. Derbyshire: Alison Daykin offers week and weekend courses and also has a less formal groups three

evenings a week: Dumfries and Galloway: Sue Macniven offers Residential Courses or one to one workshops in Twynholm or at your own venue Hampshire: Spinning and wool workshops at The Old Dairy, Westover Farm, Nr Andover. For more details go to or call Nichola 07905167922 Hampshire: Spinning workshops at fibre craft studio Beaker Button, the Fairground Craft and Design centre, Weyhill. Free spinning taster sessions. For more details contact 07738 534164 or Lancashire: Spinning workshops at Knit-Wise. All materials included for ÂŁ40, contact Cathy (lazykate) on 01695 580590 for dates. Lancashire: Carol and Pete Leonard run a regular monthly workshop for hand and wheel spinners where students can either follow the 'topic of the month' or work on their own project guided by Carol and Pete. They also run a residential weekend each year. These are held at Alston Hall, a conference and adult education centre based in the Ribble Valley close to the M6 motorway. For further information please ring 01772 784661 or visit their website London: Weaving, spinning, dyeing, tapestry weaving, and other yarn and fibre crafts workshops at The Handweavers Studio & Gallery. See the website for dates and details. Manchester:Spinning courses with Dee Sayce. also sewing, felt making, weaving, dyeing, batik and silk painting (external link to beetlefelt) Northamptonshire: Long Draw Spinning Tuition with Pam Austins, Spinning School. Pam is on a mission to teach longdraw. Most classes are held in Stoke Albany. (external link to Spinning School's calendar) Nottinghamshire: Spinning courses with Juliet Hill (external link to Juliet Hill Handspinning) Norfolk: Single-day spinning courses link to Norfolk Yarn website) Norfolk: Spinning workshop for beginners link to spottypigfarm website) or call 07930 605578 Norfolk: A programme of spinning and weaving workshops is run by the Worstead Guild of Weavers, Spinners & Dyers. For details, please email or call 07854 701807 Scotland - Perthshire (and Italy): workshops on spinning (beginners or more advanced), fibre preparation and blending, felting, dyeing and knitting. See the Workshops tab on for updated details of forthcoming workshops by Deborah Gray e-mail Sheffield: Tuition and Demonstrations by Diane Fisher, the Murmuring Wheel (external link to Diane Fisher's calendar) Sussex: Weald and Downland Museum in Singleton sometimes has courses on spinning (external link to Weald and Downland Museum's calendar) Mid-Wales: Workshops with HilltopCloud's Katie Weston mostly focus on colour blending, full details at Yorkshire: Spinning courses with Ruth Gough, various workshops for individuals or groups, at Wentworth or your venue (external link to Wingham Wool Work) Yorkshire: Rivers MEET Craft CafĂŠ, Methley, Leeds, West Yorkshire is now running an Introduction to spinning using a drop spindle workshop with Paula Edgintgon. For more details tel: 01977 279729 or see discuss any of this Happy spinning and don't be a stranger! Shiela Dixon - Editor / curator If you're reading this newsletter on the web and would like it delivered to your email inbox for free every month, just fill in your email address in the box somewhere up there on the right. If you've reading this in your inbox and would prefer not to receive any more, just use the Mailchimp 'unsubscribe' link at the foot of the email.

A PeacockMedia publication

Hand spinning news for october 2013  
Hand spinning news for october 2013  

This month's fluffy finds. Spinning News, Reviews and Do's