Handspun Heaven

To tell the truth, I’ve been a little nervous about knitting up all that yarn I spun for a sweater. I’m having these existentialistic thoughts about how it’s so full of potential right now and that every choice I make will limit the possibilities. So, instead of staying up all night swatching once I finished fulling the yarn, I set it on my desk and have been simply admiring it ever since.

But my self-imposed deadline of June 1 is creeping up. To prepare for knitting this handspun, I asked my spinning teacher (Maggie Casey!) to give me pointers. We sorted through all the skeins and pulled out the three that appeared heavier than the others. That left me with a total of 33 ounces (936 grams) or 1,626 yards (1,487 meters) of reasonably even yarn. Maggie suggested that I wind the skeins into many small balls so that I’d be sure to mix of the skeins as much as possible. She also suggested knitting it in a texture pattern and at a slightly tight gauge to help mask the thickness variations. I think Maggie is brilliant.

I wound the yarn into 25 small balls, which I put on my desk to admire for several days.

Today, I got out my needles and started swatching. This yarn works up to about 5.5 stitches/inch on size 6 needles. I began with stockinette just to get a feel for the yarn. It was every bit as wonderful as I had hoped: the bounce, the loft, the spring! Following Maggie’s advice, I then tried my favorite of stitch patterns–moss stitch. Yum. (And before you all post comments tell me there’s an error in my pattern, I know.) Now I just have to think about exactly what kind of textured modified-drop shoulder, crewneck pullover this will be. While some doors will close, others will open.


3 thoughts on “Handspun Heaven”

  1. As a beginning spinner, I’m in awe of someone having spun a sweater’s worth of yarn! It never occurred to me to look at the difference between my own balls of handspun, but that’s probably because I’ve never spun more than one ball of any kind of fibre yet. It’s good tip to know!

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