21 May 2008


Ever since I learned to ply, I've been obsessive about plying my singles.

Srsly, why would I leave a single? Plying makes EVERYTHING better.

a little blurry, but color-correct

But after plying up my Northern Lights singles, I wasn't so sure. This could be because my first bobbin was pretty uneven -- not exactly thick-and-thin, more like thin-and-cobweb-and-sometimes-it-breaks, while the second bobbin is a fairly consistent 1-1.5mm thickness.

2nd bobbin (L) and 1st bobbin (R)

By the second bobbin, I had hit my stride and my fingers knew exactly how to draw out what I wanted. I started getting aggravated when I tried plying the two together. It seems a bit of a waste, plying my "OMG I'm so proud of it!!!" 2nd bobbin with the "I only pretend to know what I'm doing" 1st bobbin, because the end result is an uneven yarn. I'm giving it a bit of overtwist because I'm thinking about using it for socks (and for socks you want a tight twist so it's hard-wearing).

After I had filled a bobbin with the 2-ply, I sat back and evaluated it. I like it... at the same time, I'm not sure that plying brings out the best in the fiber and colorway. I think I prefer it in singles... and since I have about 3-3.5 oz top left, am tempted to spin the remainder as such. Then I'd just wind it all up (along with the already-spun, unplied singles) on my niddy-noddy, set the twist and call it a day.

RECOMMENDED READING: this article (pdf link, the article is free) from Spin Off Magazine on the effect of twist in plying.

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