Saturday, April 29, 2023

Spinning and also - spinning

This has been another big week, but more on that in a moment. Let's start with some spinning-related eye candy!

This gorgeous stuff was once roving, purchased from Twisted Fiber Art back in the day - it's the Downtown colourway. I recall knitting socks for somebody with the yarn I bought, and thinking I'd use up the remains somehow with this chunky handspun. Obviously I haven't gotten around to it yet, because I just found it in my yarn cupboard this afternoon.

Spinning was one of those things I thought I would never, ever manage to do until suddenly a used wheel came available via the owner of my favourite (sadly long-since closed) yarn store. It wasn't easy for me to learn, and I had a lot of bunchy, clunky yarn coming off it for the longest time! but I understand that's normal. Eventually I got so I could nod off while spinning. Eventually too, I got so I could spin quite fine singles, and ply them together for sport weight or even lighter yarns. I heard that once you can do that, it can be very difficult to go back to spinning for chunky yarns, as with my Downtown roving. I found that to be true and when I had to take a break from spinning, I hoped my bulky skills would come back to me.

Boy, did I ever love spinning! My favourite thing was to take the wheel to the porch in summer and sit in a comfy chair, listening to an audiobook and enjoying the breeze. Neighbours would pass the house and sometimes come up the porch steps for a visit. Bliss.

I stopped spinning while we renovated our house - I was just too swamped with organizing it all. Then when we moved back to the house and I was out of the habit, I couldn't find a place to keep my spinning wheel. It used to live just inside a closet, but weirdly, we don't have closets any more... except in the front hall, where we keep our vacuum cleaner.

In the end I planted my wheel on the landing of the stairs, where I can see it going up and down. The landing is large enough for a small chair, and it's lit naturally by a big south-facing window, so I thought I might sometimes sit there with the wheel, perch my phone on the sill to play an audiobook, and while away a noontime sunpatch.

Didn't happen. And that was so many years ago now! I try to keep it dusted, but it needs a really good cleaning. I have some vacation time coming up this week - nothing fancy, just fewer deadlines than normal - and I'm thinking I will get the wheel all cleaned up nicely so it's ready when I am.

This roving was in the cabinet today too - must be an early effort because of all the size variance. It's Twisted Fiber Art again - handspun, with some sport weight. I saw some solid grey sportweight alongside it which is putting thoughts of a woven scarf in my head. The colourway is called Big Bad Wolf.


So, like I said, this was another big week for me. I cannot quite comprehend this even now, hence the 'also - spinning' of the title, but my novel SNOWED has been longlisted in a second literary competition! This time it's the Debut Dagger Award from The Crime Writers' Association in the UK. Apparently they had hundreds of submissions this year, which makes it such an honour to appear on a longlist of only ten.

I'm starting to think this project might have legs, you know? The shortlist announcement for the Debut Dagger Award is still a couple of weeks off but I'm already so nervous hoping it makes the cut.

In entirely unrelated news, it came to my attention the other day that Jellycat makes PURSES.

We already have Toast in regular Jellycat form - he's looking at me right now in fact, from the armchair across the room - but I can't help thinking having my own Toast purse to liven up a black outfit might be kind of fun. Like great, conversation-starting costume jewellery, the like of which I don't bother wearing any more. 

That's just another kind of spin, though. I know perfectly well I would look eccentric at best with a slice of smiling toast on my hip, its legs kicking gently as I moved around at a party.

Still... a sock in progress would fit perfectly into that bag, don't you think?

Okay: I'm going to wrap up there and wish you well for another week, whatever it holds for you. See you next Saturday!

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