Monday, April 4, 2011

Cottoning to it

So, the cotton-spinning thing didn't go away overnight.
I actually found a tag in the bottom of this bag of sliver! This fiber came from Pollywogs Yarn and Fiber, and since they're based in New York, I assume that I bought it on eBay. I also assume that I bought it a long time ago, since the 7.6oz bag only cost $7.13. It's labeled as "Butterscotch Swirl".

I spun up two full bobbins of it, which I plied to a fine commercial cotton yarn. The pair came out to 328 yards of mostly fingering weight yarn (total weight 3.7 oz right now, but they're still damp. Cotton takes a long time to dry).

Once again, the color difference between the unspun fiber, and the spun/boiled/set fiber is pretty amazing. I suppose if one wanted the lighter color, one could leave the baking soda out of the water bath, but I do like the darker color, so I'm not sorry that it changed. My singles are still occasionally lumpy, but I'm getting better at the long draw.

I rooted around in the Cotton Corner of the Wool Room, and found this wonderful sliver- I am pretty sure that it's Pima cotton (unfortunately, there was no tag hidden inside the bag). It's incredibly soft and has a lovely lustre. I found it a bit tougher to spin, but that might be because I purposely tried to spin it heavier. Unlike every other fiber that goes on my wheel, cotton wants to be the size of sewing thread, and I have absolutely no use for yarn that fine (and I am far too lazy to spin up 4 or 5 bobbins to ply into a single yarn). I'm happy with the weight of this yarn- it's a bit heavier than the Butterscotch swirl. This is 186 yds. Though I did not add any baking soda to the water bath, there is still a distinct color difference post setting (and that's not from the plying strand, which is commercially produced white-white cotton).

I am really quite pleased with these yarns. I suspect they'll end up in a shawl eventually, since I am not interested in weaving. Nope. Not interested, even though I am teaching at a weaving retreat at the end of April. Not interested.

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