Sunday, April 24, 2011
Navajo Plying and Hand Painted Yarn
When I posted about my yarn dyeing day I didn't really elaborate on the handpainting that Lesley and I did. I guess I didn't because I really wasn't enjoying it that much. I was having so much fun with the dyeing in the pot that I just glossed over the handpainting we did as something rather ho hum. Boy was I wrong!!!! When I got home I thought that I might as well spin it up and get it out of the way before I go back to carding and spinning my Maine Island Fleece for my someday sweater. Am I glad I decided to tackle that little "chore." Here's a picture of me waving the roving right after I handpainted it. It was a very windy day and I was putting it outside to dry.
Here is a photo of the roving after I predrafted before spinning:
Here is a photo of the beginning of the yarn as I begun to spin this same roving:
I spent an hour or so navajo plying. It's been years since I've done any plying like this. Navajo plying is good if you have a thin single ply that you want to ply in such a way that the colors stay as vivid and separate as possible. Perfect for handpainting! It was clunky during most of my attempt at this but just as I was getting to the end of it I got the hang of it. Here are two youtube video clips that I used and found helpful.
This first one is with Sarah Anderson and is from Interweave Press. Can't go wrong with Interweave Press! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JmlwtojLXI8&NR=1 I watched this all the way through several times before I began. Then I paused a lot as I tried to follow along. To be honest I just couldn't get the left hand to guide the yarn. I was using the left hand to pull it through. But figured I'd keep going and maybe I'd see the errors of my ways.
Then I found this clip and this helped me with what to do with my right hand and how to manage that opening loop that I seemed to keep losing: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dgNkkt5xLZI&feature=related For some reason, not that this video is any better than Sarah's, but this one worked for me. Maybe it was because I had been so keen on watching my loop and trying to figure out how to turn my left hand into a guiding hand that I was ready to really see and feel this technique. Then I got it! Right before I ran out of yarn.
And here's my final Navajo Plied yarn!
So now I think I'm going to grab some cheap cotton yarn and try using that just to practice this technique.
Good luck with Navajo plying if you ever give it a go. I know I'm going do a heck of a lot more handpainting this summer! That's for sure.
May your spinning spin smoothly and your yarn be luscious,
PS - Speaking of smooth spinning and Navajo plying; take a look at these Navajo spindles! Wow! I just may have to try this type of spinning - http://www.roosterick.com/spinning