What's Going Down

Saturday, August 7, 2010


I'm going to get to our NYC Day 3 post, but first I wanted to show you guys something totally cool.

Let me tell you a little about yarn.
 Yarn comes from the store wound up in a couple of different ways. Very frequently, it comes like above: in a hank. It looks beautiful but it's impossible to knit from. The yarn must first be wound into a ball or a skein or a cake. I know. Nonsensical words.

Well, in order to wind from a hank into a ball, etc you have to have a Yarn Swift, which typically looks something like this and costs between $50-80. I didn't want to spend $50-80 on a swift... and well, how hard could it be?

Except, I'm not at all adept at using tools. But you know who is? My dad. I gave him some basic instructions and within a couple of hours he'd churned this out:

 I know, it doesn't look like much. But the fact that it breaks down so that I can store it out of the way is perfection!

 Now, this is what I'm talking about. So, how does it work?
 Well, you just unwind your hank, and place it on your awesomely made yarn swift and with the use of one of these: (a ball winder).
In no time flat, you've got yourself a cake. Super easy to knit from and also, totally mesmerizing to look at.
Plus, you just saved yourself $50. Which allows you to buy more of this:
Yes, this would be all the yarn I brought back with me from my trip.
Okay, now for some nerdy yarn talk.
The green on the end is a Blue Sky Alpacas Alpaca/Silk Fingering Weight.
Next to it, is an Alpaca Tencel Mix I couldn't keep my hands off of.
The purple is a variegated Laceweight Wool. It's a gorgeous hand-dye... and it's 1300 yards.
The Noro Silk Garden  is next to it. I think this is destined to be a shawl.
The next yarn is so awesome I can almost not bring myself to talk about it. My totally awesome friend, Kami handspun this for me. (There are two other skeins, also). It took her 60 hours. After you spin the yarn, apparently, you have to boil the yarn briefly to "set the twist". When she went to do that, the colors all bled. Apparently, the person who dyed the yarn (it was a custom request) failed to take the proper steps to ensure it wouldn't bleed. Kami sent this one skein, unset, so I could see the beautiful dye job and her fabulous workmanship. Someday, if I want to knit with this yarn, I'll have to set the twist myself (and watch the color bleed.) But in the meantime, I love it.
Finally, on the end is an awesome Spud & Chloe superwash wool intended to make something for one of my children... dunno what yet.

Have I blathered about yarn long enough?
Thank you to my awesome Dad for indulging my requests and building me something so cool! Again!


Sheree said...

Your dad is awesome. I love how pretty the yarn looked in your pictures of the yard shop. I don't knit, but I want to learn. I think I'd really like it.

Sabra at Sew a Straight Line said...

so awesome!

and I love yarn. Seriously, for someone who DOES NOT KNIT AT ALL, I have quite a few skeins--I think, like, five currently. I finally had to stop looking at online dyers because I just kept buying.

ba and the boys said...

your dad is the coolest.
and im in love with that green. i could stare at that hank all day long.

Jenny said...

I might have to get dad to build one of those for me and start buying yummy yarn like that.

Shannon said...

What a great idea! This could keep my kids busy for hours.... You're a very inspiring knitter.

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