Friday, 13 September 2013

Core Spinning in the Kawarthas

Yesterday I joined some members of the Kawartha Handweavers and Spinners Guild of which I am a member for a core spinning workshop conducted by Donna Lonergan.

For each of the 4 techniques, she demonstrated on her wheel with the humongous jumbo flyer and then we'd try it on our own wheels.

First we used a merino core (the white bits) and spun roving onto it. Ideally, the entire core should be covered. We also learned a 'cocoon' technique where you created fibrey lumps on the core. Z-spun means you are spinning the wheel clockwise so the twist slants like this / or the letter Z.
Here, we took a two-ply S-spun core and spun angora onto it with Z-twist. S-spinning is counter-clockwise \ like the letter 'S'.
Mine looked like lumpy cat hair.
Then we used 2 strands of copper wire and Z-spun with roving again. I had quite a bit of trouble with this as one of my copper strands was like thread and was easily broken. Also, we learned never to let it kink or spin back on itself as this is how the wire also weakens. We alternated spinning the roving around the two wires and then between the two wires.
This last technique involved spinning with roving and interspersing locks. The locks we were given in our materials kits were wildly coloured. My results looked somewhat like a clown wig.
The angora core-spun yarn could be used to make cozy, small items like handwarmers. Finding uses for the other yarns - other than artistically in a weaving or artwork of some kind - would require some creative thinking. Perhaps for embellishments for cuffs of mittens, gloves, hats or scarves.

This was the project sample card and our resulting skeins. I liked Donna's 'high five' punch she used instead of the mundane hole punch.
I really enjoy trying new techniques. It stimulates my brain when I learn new things. I also like the camaraderie of being among people who share my fibrey interests.

The drive to Lindsay is enjoyable - only about an hour and 10 minutes from home. The best part is the low-traffic route I take goes past Buttertarts 'n' More in Little Britain and I get to buy buttertarts to bring home.

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