Remember this pretty little spindle I bought last month at Rhinebeck? I used it on the Cotswold roving to make this:
Yeah, go ahead and laugh; I know it's quite pathetic. In fact, I intend to save these ~200 yards of handspun madness as a reminder that we all start out as rank amateurs (and I don't think spinners start out any ranker than this). I suspected that besides my non-existent spinning skills, my pretty spindle wasn't really up to snuff, at least for a beginner. Ravelry spinners recommended several name-brands to me, and so I bought a Kundert spindle in walnut and maple:
It came with the tie-dyed roving you see wrapped around it. I took it for its maiden spin to the spinning guild meeting yesterday. I was the lone person using a hand spindle; everyone else had wheels: Louets, Schachts, Ashfords, you name it, it was there. One wheel in particular was made of gorgeous chestnut-colored wood, with leaves carved around the wheel. It was quite a thing of beauty. Naturally, everyone told me how hard it was to spindle, how easy it was to use a wheel, and how everyone present started with a hand spindle. Two lovely ladies helped me used my Kundert spindle. One, V, took my pretty painted one for a spin and determined that it was not balanced well-enough for me to use (she of course could make a lace-weight yarn out of my BFL roving like that spindle were a $300 Golding!). So I guess I'll use it as a hand-supported spindle, or stick it in a basket as decoration. My Kundert, which weighs 1.3 ounces, V though was too light for a beginner (yikes! and it came as part of a learn to spin kit!!). However, if I draft well (I still really suck at drafting), I should be able to use it. Bonus: I can use it as a top or bottom whorl. Ha- I actually think I like it as a bottom whorl more.
I also bought the cheap $9 lucet:
It's made of walnut, so for $9 I think I really got a bargain. I haven't used it yet; I've been waxing it since it came unfinished. When I like the gloss, I'll start cranking out cord.
On the knitting front, Peggy is about 97% done. I have about 5 rows left on the 2nd sleeve. The body is made up, waiting for the sleeves.
My hairdresser is expecting a wee one on Valentine's Day, so I'm making some bibs. Here's the first, modeled by Betsy:
This is a pattern from the Down Cloverlaine website (link on the sidebar) called Baby Ripples; I modified it a bit. I may make another in the same Peaches and Crème Fiesta yarn.
DD#1 still has lots of stuff at our house that I keep threatening to make disappear. The other week she realized that the dressy hat she insisted I make her when she was in college is still at my house. Now she wants it again (I don't think she wore it once while she was at college, to be honest).
Nice, isn't it? Made of Tahki Sable that is 70% Merino wool and 30% angora, it's sooo soft. The pattern is the cover hat by Nicky Epstein on the Vogue Knitting Winter 94/95 issue, only I made it shorter, in one color, and left off the snowflake and reindeer embroidery. (In case you have that issue and were wondering.)
Later this week DH and I go to Atlanta, GA, where my scientific society is having its annual meeting. I'll be speaking next Sunday about my cancer research. Might take a project along for the plane; can't decide. Flying is such a hassle and TSA is somewhat capricious.