Thursday, October 9, 2008

One-Handed Technique

At the show in Montpelier, I saw an interesting book, Spinning for Softness and Speed, by Paula Simmons. Interesting concepts, basically focusing on avoiding using fingers to pinch the yarn and control the twist. Instead, allow the fiber to twist with the wheel and use only one hand to draft the yarn back, ahead of the twist so the twist doesn't go into the source. You can read more in the book itself about the advantages of this approach. Basically, the author states that it allows faster spinning, and automatically avoids overtwist, making the yarn softer.
I tried the technique - during the presidential "town hall" debate, no less! I found it difficult, and still hadn't gotten it after a couple of hours. The yarn frequently just separated so it was pulled into the bobbin and I was left holding the fiber. The main problem may have been with my tension - I was using my Ashford Traditional double drive, which makes it a little difficult to fine-tune the speed at which the wheel is taking up the fiber. I tried using different amounts of fiber to draft/spin. My end product was uneven, unfortunately. I think I'll be persistent, and try it out on my Louet Victoria, which has Scotch tension. Here is a photo of my initial attempt:

2 comments:

sue said...

The one handed technique sounds simple but after you showed me how it was done at the Fluff n Nonsense group, I have to admit it looks HARD! You were persistant in trying to make it work out by the fullness of your bobbin. Was it worth the effort? Will the spun wool be workable into a garment? I am not sure this is a technique for me!!

sue said...

Aaaaah the Book!!!! Seems to me you were real comfy in the car coming back from the Montplier show! You never said a word unless you wanted to show me something! So for all of you out there fiber web land...She did read the book and I mean the Whole book!