Ply | Two
Yardage | 871.7 m
WPI | Laceweight
Fibre | Pigeonroof Studios Merino/Soysilk Roving in Morrocco
Tool | Serenity Wheel [14:1]
Part of this year’s crafty resolution is to break into my fibre stash and churn out some two-ply laceweight yarn. I usually spin up fingering weight yarn that is navajo-plied (three-ply) so this is considered something semi-new for me.
For those who are spin-challenged, yarn is commonly can be made up of a few strands called ply/plies. Singles – one strand – are lovely to knit with but if you ply a few strengths together, you give yarn an added strength and structure. Navajo plying is a kind of technique whereby you retain the colour blocks in the fiber but because the resulting yarn is made up of a single strand, any breakage along either one strand can lead to the entire yarn unravelling. Still, people like to work with this technique because of how you can hold on to a colour sequence. Regular plying – putting two to three different strands together – often results in colour sequences in the original fiber being broken up. It’s nice for achieving an overall heathered look in a knitted project but unless you plan things properly, this technique doesn’t really give you a nice colour block you would want when, say, knitting self-striping socks.
I choose this particular colourway to churn out two-ply laceweight because of the nearly semi-solid shades. The resulting yarn looks pretty and quite uniformed in terms of colours. Plying this took quite a while as I was working with about 4.2 oz of yarn and very thin singles. I had to ply nearly 1700 meters of yarn and therefore broke the plying sessions into two – took me two nights (about six to eight hours in total) to finish this!
The singles were a little challenging at first as I am used to spinning yarn at a 10:1 ratio. Spinning at 14:1 with no tension required some focus, especially when drafting the fiber! There were a few instances where the fiber just flew out of my hands!!!! I guess it is good that I actually set this as one of my resolutions for this year – practice makes perfect! Now to head back to surfing the Net for my assignments – I need to find vehicle lifts (don’t ask).