Have you ever picked up a gorgeous braid of coloured fiber, gotten it home and then had it sit in your stash forever? Is part of the problem that you’re just not sure what to do with it? Well, I hope today’s post will help a little!
I consider myself to be a fairly new spinner, having just learned in February of 2014. However, in that time, I’ve done a lot of reading, watching Craftsy classes and practicing. I approach colour from a slightly different perspective than most, as I have a background in photography and did my own colour printing for years. I also have a background in interior design, my favourite class being about working with colours!
Since learning to spin, I’ve been a Sweet Georgia Fiber Club member. One of the things I love about being a club member is that sometimes you get a braid of fiber that you would have never picked out yourself. I find this really pushes me outside my comfort zone. That was definitely the case with July 2015’s colour, Modern Mandarin. While I loved the base (BFL/silk), I didn’t love the colour… I’m just not a fan of pink. Earlier this year, I joined a Spin the Bin challenge, where you try and spin things just from your stash of fiber… and I knew I wanted to get this out of my stash!
So the challenge was, what do I do with it? Do I make it a gradient and blend it with some white? Do I just spin it from end to end and navajo ply it and embrace the colours as is? Or do I try and combine it with something? I decided that I would combine it with something and started to search my stash.
I chose this gem from November 2013 club called Wild Turkey, that I had bought as an extra. The oranges were a perfect match and I loved how the blues and greens in Wild Turkey played off the pinks and purples in Modern Mandarin.
If you know anything about colour theory, you’ll know that blue is complementary to orange and that green is complementary to red (or pink!) This was part of the reason that I decided to combine them. The other part was that I hoped that they would end up becoming a more subtle yarn, that I would be happier with!
I split each of the braids into 12 pieces, as I wanted fairly short colour repeats and then I started spinning. One colour per bobbin, end to end, keeping the repeats in the same order until I had my two full bobbins.
And then the plying marathon began! I’d spun my singles very thin, so it just seemed to never end!
This was it fresh off the bobbin and still on the niddy noddy.
I was so excited with the skein, that I just had to photograph it before washing and finishing it.
After washing, the fiber relaxed and puffed up a little, making it very soft. I also had a small amount of the Wild Turkey left over, so I navajo plyed it and got a mini skein of about 60 yards!
Can you see the difference from the image above before the bath?
It always amazes me how colour can be transformed just by the way you work with it. The boldness of both colourways is muted in the combination, when you compare it to the navajo plyed Wild Turkey, but the beauty of it remains. I managed to get exactly what I’d hoped for. A beautiful combination of colours that I’m excited to work with!
I have approximately 1145 yards to play with (another benefit of working with two braids!) and I can’t wait to figure out something to knit with it.
What do you have in your stash that you could combine? Could you make something new that appeals to you more?
Until next time,