Ready for a Marathon

No, not the running type.  A 2-mile walk around the block with Maggie is as intense as I ever plan to get.  This will be a spinning marathon.  I've cleared all other spinning projects off the calendar and will be concentrating on this lovely BFL:


At the Spin-In in April I bought 3 pounds to make my son a sweater.  I've subsequently learned that 3 pounds is probably overkill, but I'm going to go ahead and spin it all up in the hopes that I may even have enough for two sweaters.  I've already sampled and will be spinning a 3-ply heavy DK weight (I hope).  My experiences so far have taught me that I really need to do this all at once rather than intersperse it with other projects.  So it will be a marathon.  However, I am finding this a very relaxing fiber to spin.  After spinning so much merino/silk, this has a very different feel.  It's not as silky, crimpier but even though it's very clean, has a wonderful lanolin feel to it.  

My most recent project has been the aforementioned merino/silk.  This was the fiber:


When I 2-plied, I tried to see how much I could get on one bobbin – it worked out to 7 ounces!  However, toward the end it was very hard to treadle the heavy bobbin:


But it may have been worth it to get over 400 yards of a heavy laceweight/light fingering:


Another FO to report – Winterscape socks from Austermann Step.  These will be for a quilting friend:


And I am sad to report that Whistler has indeed been frogged.  The yarn is neatly wound and bagged and awaiting another Dale to be chosen when fall rolls around.  Although, at the rate our weather as been going, I may be casting on for warm woolies in the middle of August!  This leaves my knitting calendar also freed up to work on a project for my sil.  Her son is getting married in August and she has a rather ambitious afghan planned for him.  She enlisted the help of myself and my other sil (nice to have knitters in the family!).  My portion is two 6" x 60" panels of a leaf pattern – very easy and fun to do.  Almost mindless:


The yarn my sil is using is Wool-Ease.  I've never used it before and I'm finding I really like it.  It's 80/20 wool/acrylic, but is very soft and not at all "plastic" feeling as some acrylics are.  I've been looking for a go-to yarn for charity knitting and everyday wear for the girls.  I've been very, very disappointed in the Encore I've been using.  I know some pilling is inevitable, but the Encore's pilling has been horrendous.  Anyone out there have any experience with high wear garments made of Wool-Ease?

Back to spinning now!

8 thoughts on “Ready for a Marathon

  1. Oooh, your yarn is beautiful. I can just imagine the heavenly shawl you’ll knit from it.

    I looked for a nice wool-acrylic mix when my son was little, despite my overall distaste for acrylic, and I found that Phildar had some nice options–both in yarns and colors. I’m not sure how hard that is to find (Wool-Ease seems to be everywhere), but I was pleasantly surprised. It still doesn’t change my overall preference for wool, but there are times when having something truly washable is a benefit.

    Our weather has been so downright summery that I can’t even bear to think about a heavy sweater now, and Sirdal is definitely on the back burner. My flights of fancy have moved me toward socks.

  2. Oh what fun you have in store…..a handknit sweater! Are you going to mix up the bobbins, or ply as you spin them?

    Gorgeous, GORGEOUS lace wt yarn…and 7 ounces on one bobbin!! Amazing.

    I better hush – I have a date with Mr. WooLee Winder this afternoon. I learned to do a long draw a couple of days ago. Hope I still remember how. Great fun!

  3. As usual your projects are gorgeous! I like the idea of the “family afghan”.
    I have my first Wool-Ease sweater on the needles so can’t attest to its wearability or pilliness yet, but am enjoying working with it.

  4. Your spinning is just gorgeous! I’m really not a fan of Encore either. The only thing I’ve made out of Wool-ease was a pair of socks for John, way back when I first started knitting. He wore them a lot, they were loosely knit, and they wore forever. And it’s cheap so you can afford to knit a lot with it. That’s my only experience with it though…

  5. Interesting comments. I never think about buying Lion Brand Yarn, but if Woolease held up in a loosely knit pair of men’s socks, I’m impressed.

    Another yarn you might consider is Bretton, a Patternworks house yarn. It’s a DK weight 70% superwash wool/25% nylon/5% alpaca and I love knitting with it. I’ve used it for Bob’s socks and a cabled vest for Mom, all of which go in the washer and dryer.

  6. I made a sweater for my dad using wool-ease and I was really disappointed when I saw it about 5 years later. It’s a mess — fuzzy, pilled, etc. Now my SIL wears it as her junk sweater around the house. I will knit her another one for Xmas this year so she can get rid of this one. I won’t use that yarn again.

  7. I used Wool-ease for hats and had no problems with it, but the cabled sweater I knit my husband went fuzzy and pilly after several washings. The afghan should be fine, as long as they don’t wash it too often.
    Love your merino-silk – what gorgeous yarn you made!
    I’ve found that I’m better off, too, with sticking with the big spinning project and doing it all at once. I spin all my singles (or at least as many as I have bobbins for…) and ply from random bobbins in order to even out the final yarn.

  8. Look at you making your own yarn! It’s really beautiful, Dorothy. And your leaf pattern is so nicely done…wouldn’t that be pretty as a panel on a sweater?

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