Friday, May 09, 2008


I feel like I should post an alert prior to this post -- it is full of introspection and philosophizing! Please - DO post a comment if you think I'm wrong in my conclusions, methodology, or just plain too full of myself.

I've been trying to center myself in the past few days, because I frequently feel stressed and out of sorts.

I'm thinking that what drives me nuts about other people is what I need to work on, in my own life.

Being self-centered. Am I focusing too much on myself, instead of what others need from me? Maybe, but I'm not hearing that from anyone. Note to self: I should ask for a reality check.

Where am I truly needing to improve things? Answer: I need to work on the clutter in the house. AKA- get stuff done.

I ought to start carrying a notebook again. OK, I ought to start writing in the notebook that I do carry, instead of acting like it deserves nothing less than profound statements of something that I'll never figure out, much less achieve.

Lists are good for me - nine times out of ten, when I write stuff down I end up thinking "Is that all?? I thought there was more. Way more than I could ever do. But this, this I can chip away at."

I feel better now. Irony, anyone?

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Un-Plying Yarn

I know you have all been in this same boat - you've plied something, and it just doesn't work for you. How the heck can you undo all that plying? Well, here's Steph's method.

First, you need a wheel, then a raddle or something to divide the plies, and finally, a yarn blocker. The blocker may be hard to improvise. Come to think of it, I might have to invite a couple of friends and their ballwinders over!

Unplying yarn, pt.1
Originally uploaded by OriginalTwistedSpinster
Set up the wheel to spin in the opposite direction of the ply. You're untwisting the ply, after all. Then, as soon as you have enough untwisted, use the raddle to divide the plies.

Unplying yarn, pt.2
Originally uploaded by OriginalTwistedSpinster

Keep untwisting the plies with the wheel, drawing the yarn off the bobbin as it's untwisted. When you have enough, tie the loose ends onto the middle axle and start winding around the blocker. Notice that there are two ends - each is going to have its own section of the blocker.

Unplying yarn, pt.3
Originally uploaded by OriginalTwistedSpinster
Wind the separated plies around the blocker as you untwist with the wheel. Then, just keep untwisting, and winding on as you go. It's important to keep an even tension on both plies - I can see where it might be difficult for two people with ballwinders to stay in synch.

Unplying yarn, pt.4
Originally uploaded by OriginalTwistedSpinster
Here's a side view of the operation.

Unplying yarn, pt.5
Originally uploaded by OriginalTwistedSpinster
Here's a straight-on view of what's going on. Obviously, I don't have pictures of the next steps, which is winding each ply onto a bobbin or whatever treatment logically comes next.

I'm in a bit of melancholy right now... I think it's mainly from overdoing this weekend. The inlaws are going to be stopping by this weekend on the way to Sacramento, and we're still getting most of last year's garden cleaned up. So, after lots of activity, the fibro flares.

But I am spinning through those punis I carded last week. They're not drafting as easily as I'd like, but they spin much faster on the SpinTech than on the tahkli!

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Knit for Peace in Tibet

I don't think I have that big a voice (except that I do tend to talk loudly on the phone...) but I've finally come up with a good idea.

This Olympics, let's knit for peace in Tibet, instead of having a Knitting Olympics.

Anybody have a good skill in creating a button for this?

Don't get me wrong, I'm not dissing the Yarn Harlot, the originator of the Knitting Olympics (I think- if I'm wrong, please do correct me!) Like I joked to a clerk in the bookstore, I've known her a long time -- since she was a mere yarn whore flirt. (won't make my mom flinch) I've known her posts on the Knitlist since before she was pregnant with her son, and when she nicknamed him the Squatter because he didn't want to be born. (later edit) Ok, apparently I'm confusing my knitlist history - the Squatter belonged to Jan T.

But I don't feel comfortable supporting the Olympics this time around. Even without the stories Joy tells about the refugees.

So this Olympics, let's knit for Peace in Tibet.