We have yarn!
Handspun by Stefania (but handspun by me) Corriedale/Silk in osage and indigo:
398 yards, 5.25 oz. Not yet washed and set, but still, yarn. Yay!
And spun singles:
These are the two bobbins of A Touch of Twist Rambouillet/Silk:
Some parts were a breeze to spin, and some were rougher roving bits (coarser fiber that was more fuzzed up) that took more work to keep relatively even. There are little slubby bits throughout which will give the finished yarn charm.
About 8 oz and I don't want to think about how many yards of plying ahead of me...
Buoyed by that success and cheered by your comments, I pushed on to finish the second bobbin of Lorna's Laces Sheperd Top in Glenwood:
The previous bobbin on top, the latest on bottom.
After spinning so much roving, especially the somewhat slubby Rambouillet/Silk, it was comforting to be able to spin nice even singles. It was like, hey, I can spin! Cool! I also had to move my back hand much further back to accommodate the longer fiber length.
One weird thing about the Lorna's Laces Sheperd Top is the ends: they are cut off with scissors, instead of pulled apart. To avoid any short, cut fibers, I pulled out the shorter end bits and chucked them.
The fiber itself is a nice, smooth spin. I have a few more colorways, and like the Glenwood, they all have sequential color series, instead of being randomly or spotchily dyed. I can see myself getitng tired of spinning the colors "in order", spinning to chain-ply, and chain-plying, so I will have to get creative with how I spin the other rovings.
With only the Foxfire Fiber Camel/Silk and Hello Yarn Shetland left, I reluctantly chose the Foxfire Fiber. While gorgeous and luscious, I knew it would take longer and be a trickier spin. The Hello Yarn would be a good carrot to keep me going.
Or so I thought.
When I pulled out my sample card, I realized I was really spinning laceweight on this. Fine. The stuff that takes for-e-vah. Here's bobbin 1:
And I wish this were bobbin 2, but it's just bobbin 1 again, cuz it's so pretty I can't resist:
Again, it felt nice to spin smooth, even singles. Ahhhh. I can spin evenly!
The prep is delish. No felting, very loose. I slowly remembered how I had spun the first bobbin (I make it sound so long ago but it was April). I pre-drafted to a manageable thickness, which was time consuming but, well, manageable. Because of the short and long fibers, I balanced between controlling longer fibers with my pinky and ring finger, and the shorter fibers with my thumb and index finger.
But the spinning felt like cycling uphill into the wind: lots of peddling but little visible progress. Every inch of roving pre-drafted out to at least a foot, which, at laceweight, took a long, long time to spin.
The first 1/3 took over 2.5 hours. Ick. At least 5 more hours to go. Just spinning time! Very disheartening. Very, very disheartening.
In desperation, I tried spinning without pre-drafting. It took some getting used to, but I got the hang of it. Somehow, the next 1/6 took .5 hours, and the following 1/4 took 1.25 hours. Woohoo! Now that's progress I can live with! Another 1.25 hours or so should finish it off! Totally do-able by this weekend.
Please don't mention plying.
The lesson: pre-drafting is not always the best thing, or even necessary. I try to minimize pre-drafting anyway, because it takes so long and, frankly, I'd rather be spinning. Not to say it doesn't have its uses.
Three different projects, three different spinning styles, and what will be three different types of handspun. A good workout!