Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Navaho Plying

first skein ever Navaho plied by moi

I think I may have fallen in love. :) I'm madly trying to get some samples made up of the fibre I'm now carrying and I decided that I'd like to try plying. Since I have plied the traditional way before and found it time consuming getting two bobbins spun up, and wasteful cause I can never get two bobbins with the same yardage on them, thought I'd try Navaho plying.

Since I'd never done it before I only had a rudimentary grasp of what was required so I did a bit of a rummage on the internet and found a video tutorial here:

It looked simple enough.

I started spinning the merino/nylon blend fibre that I'd carded last night and done a bit of a hash job on, so I carded one more batt on the Wild Card tonight sandwiching the nylon between two layers of merino and spun that, too. That did indeed work somewhat better, but I'm sure there must be a simpler way to do blends. When Loralee gets back from her cruise I'll see if she can walk me through the process. Maybe I need to alternate the two fibres throughout, except I'm trying to do a 10-12% nylon content.

Anyway, I finished spinning the singles at guild meeting tonight and having an empty bobbin with me, got that on and the full bobbin on the kate and started plying. (Typo originally was playing, which I suppose I didn't really need to correct!)

Perhaps tomorrow I'll wet finish it, and then next dye day I'll try dyeing it. Nylon is supposedly good with acid dyes - one way to find out is to toss it into the dye pot.

There isn't really enough yardage to do anything with so I'll card up some more and do at least one more skein. I think this yarn would make a good toque so I may look for a knitting pattern. It may take two more skeins - will have to figure out yardage and if I can replicate - within reason, given I'm a non-spinner - and find a pattern that appeals to me.

On the weaving front I did weave two more towels with one left on the loom. Decided to save it for tomorrow or else both looms will be empty and I have colour gamp kits to make up tomorrow, too. After all that is done I will slam that silk warp on the Fanny loom for another scarf and think about the next warp for the AVL. Still some single 24 nm linen left - my goodness do you ever get a lot of play value with fine threads!!!!

Doc put me back on another week's worth of anti-biotics and between that and getting a good night's sleep last night my energy lasted much better today. :)

Currently reading The Parisian Prodigal by Alan Gordon


Tina said...

I love the look of handspun, and blue is my favorite color! I think you did a great job on this skein.
I haven't done much navajo plying, but I may do some since 3 ply is better for knitting. I have heard that 2ply is great for weaving, though I haven't used my handspun on the loom yet.
One of my wheels is a Louet, with those huge bobbins, I love the size of the skeins I get from it. So I could get a good size three ply skein from it.

Sharon Schulze said...

I love Navajo plying! I don't spin much, and then only on either a spindle or a charkha, but the lady who taught me to spin also taught me to Navajo ply and it is just a happy-making thing, I think.

Also - I'm weaving something from a pattern that called for a floating selvedge. I've been pressed for time so instead of fixing a problem with the draft that requires the FS I just threw it on. After all, a FS never made much difference in my weaving before. But now! It is so aggravatingly slow! Maybe in reality I'm not slowing down that much but it certainly feels slower and I'm spending way to much time having to go back and put the shuttle under the FS.

I had no idea I would notice such a big difference. Next time I think I'll just fix the draft... ;-)

Actually, I put on a 10 yard warp and have only gotten about 1 yard woven so maybe I should fix the draft now - I could just weight a couple extra ends...

Laura said...

heh - now you know why I always maintain that a floating selvedge slows me down!!!!! Can you just re-thread 3-4 of your outside threads instead of adding more and weighting them?

There is no reason to not use a 3 ply for weaving. :) If used for warp it just has to be strong enough. The reason I'm knitting samples is that knitting takes less yardage than weaving something would and I'm pressed for time to get everything done for Fibres West in Abbotsford, BC March 26/27. :}

Deadlines are my friend! (Really! and I'm going to keep telling myself that.....)


Brenda said...

Navajo plying saved my sanity 25 years ago. Interesting that you're now discovering it while I've drifted over to the other side and am doing more 2 ply with fine fibres. Conclusion? We never stop learning or experimenting, thank goodness!

Any signs of spring up there yet?

Laura said...

It's far too mild, but far too early to expect spring. :( I'd be much happier if it went to -10 and stayed there until spring actually does arrive. The roads are a mess, the cars are filthy, roads and sidewalks trecherous. And no sun!

Okay - now that that whine is off my chest I'll stop now. :}


Annie said...

I'm not very fond of navaho plying. It's ok for a small amount, but I get very tired doing it.
I much prefer to ply from a centre pull ball, making a two ply by using the ends from the outside and the inside together. Very good for fine (weaving) yarns!

Sharon Schulze said...

Haha - deadlines are our friends! But have you noticed that nobody can be as annoying as a good friend? HAHAHAHA

I have the day off and I think it's making me giddy. :-)