Yesterday was another day of aha! moments. Judith started the day out speaking about diameter control. She had us work from our default spinning and with just a little adjustment to our miniSpinners we learned that we could spin just about any weight.
Judith demonstrated the technique, gave us each a hunk of polwarth and turned us loose. It's amazing how when you understand the workings of a machine you can make that machine do pretty much what you want it to do. My friend Steph told me that she used to feel this way a bit about her computer. She said she would get frustrated that her computer couldn't do the same things that her friend Ken's could do. She realized that it wasn't the computer but how she was using it. I realized the same thing yesterday.
When I first learned to spin I couldn't wait to spin a beautiful, consistent fingering weight yarn. I wanted to be able to spin yards and yards of it. Practice, practice, practice and what do you know? I can spin a pretty great fingering weight. It was only after I had mastered this skill that I tried to spin a heavier yarn, only to discover that it just wasn't possible. I used to dream of spinning a bouncy worsted weight yarn. I tried changing everything I could about the way I was spinning. Nothing, nada, no way. I could NOT get anything that looked good except that darned fingering weight. Until yesterday...
|super bulky to worsted|
|worsted to lace weight|
All of this by simply learning what the wheel can do. This had nothing to do with me changing anything about how I was spinning but by making the wheel perform the way I wanted it to. It's true! And the sampling technique we did was outstanding. It makes me want to bring out ALL of my spinning stash and sample all of it just to see what I can do with it. So exciting!
We also got to spin some pretty beautiful luxury fibers; yak, alpaca, silk, cashmere. That was really great!
Judith also covered plying. I could have taken an entire class on this subject alone! That's for another time.
Today I head home. My head is full with the possibilities ahead of me. I am happy to have the 4 hours of driving time to mull over everything I have learned. I can't wait to get started!