Now that I have a rudimentary understanding of my wheel, my thoughts have turned to the yarns I'm not knitting with because they're thinner than my brain can cope with. There are several in this category, but being somewhat of a daredevil I didn't hesitate to look at the most expensive one first.
Yes, this is the 1300 yards of cashmere/alpaca/silk blend I bought from Viola well over a year ago. The only more expensive yarn in my stash is the qiviut, which should tell you something. And just getting the cake wound into two equal but smaller cakes took For. Ever. I mean, you're still looking at 650 yards on each one, there.
Having taken the plunge, I got out my trusty Judith MacKenzie McCuin book and read about how to spin two or more plied yarns together - this is called 'cabling' rather than 'plying' - retained the directive 'spin in the direction opposite that of the original ply', and promptly forgot the rest.
Let's look closer.
It's not perfect - I was watching a Harry Potter movie at the time, and I didn't spin each section as much as I ought - but I think it's very pretty.
You may have noticed that 650 yards is just a little more than you need for the Escapist shawl, and you might be able to guess what I'm now making with my first cabled yarn. I'll show you pictures on Tuesday after the directions for Part Two are released (on Monday - so there's still time to be an early member of the KAL!) but for now let me just say that the way light reflects off a cabled yarn is about 60 million more times gorgeous even than the way it reflects off a regular ply.
(oh, and knitting laceweight as opposed to uber-thin laceweight? totally do-able even for ol' limpy here.)