Friday, May 09, 2008

in which elsie spins

You may have noticed from Monday's post that I've acquired a spinning wheel. I've now had it for almost a week, and I think it's time for a proper introduction. Here she is. I may name her (actually, I may already have named her) but I'm embarrassed to admit that I seem to have become the kind of person who ascribes gender and then names an object, as charming as that object might be, so I'm not quite up to telling you that her name is Jennie. So just forget all that, will you?
Jennie has been moving all over the house. She's a Baynes, and she's small, so I can spin out on the front porch, upstairs in my nook, downstairs in the living room, even outside in the backyard.
I got her second hand, after I tested a Baynes wheel at Susan's Spinning Bunny last Friday. Susan didn't have any in stock, which was just as well, since the retail price on a Baynes was just slightly out of my price range. I would have had to wait another few months, if it weren't for craigslist. A nice lady with four kids who needed the money sold the wheel to me on Sunday. It may be the first time in my life I haven't dickered on the price of a second-hand object. The lady really needed the money.
She has an integral lazy kate, which seems like a nice feature, and it is, but I've been learning to ply from a Schacht lazy kate with tension, and this is not as easy. I have to be much more careful and pay more attention when I'm plying. I essentially have to apply the tension with my fingers.
I've been a little disappointed with my first efforts, but I'm chalking it up to experience and moving on. Here are my first skeins, taking a bath.


Ipo said...

welcome to the family jennie!

Sandy said...

I'm going to drive past your house at all hours now hoping to catch you on the porch spinning. Your skeins look beautiful.

Anonymous said...

V. cool. I have a Hitchhiker but I haven't spun for ages, and not just because the kid of mine keeps hijacking it. Must Get More Bobbins. :-)

In my experience even oddly spun and plied yarn mostly knits up just fine, BTW.

Anonymous said...

Good lord, another thing to be jealous of you for! I've always wanted a spinning wheel, but couldn't afford it and couldn't fit it anywhere in the house. I have a drop spindle, but never got the hang of it.

Those skeins look wonderful. Any machine can spin perfectly even yarn. Yours are better.

PS: I named my Mac Mini "Juliette" you're not alone in that.

Granna Judy said...

I think your yarn looks really interesting -- I would love to knit some of it.

Dana said...

Now how cool is that? I have a hard time picturing myself spinning, but I can picture myself before a nice large loom. I'm thinking I should start with a small table loom, but I want to start with a big one that takes up my whole front room.

I'm a little overeager that way.

Tara said...

I've always wanted to learn to spin. Awesome!

shaun said...

I love the name Jennie for your wheel -- very evocative. If you were writing a novel in the eighteenth century and you had a hard-working, earthy, free-spirited, somewhat lusty single young woman character, you'd name her Jenny. Jenny would never be the foundling who discovers she's an heiress -- she'd be the frank and rustic barmaid even after the novel ends.

Don't you think that sounds like a spinning wheel? Or does it just say something weird about me that I would equate getting a spinning wheel with surrendering to your animal instincts and abandoning the pretense that you are a civilized knitter who keeps her wooly desires in check?

elsie deluxe said...

Shaun, you're cracking me right up. And yes, that's exactly how I feel about the name, too. Jennie is a practical sort, who isn't afraid to think for herself.