This is the third braid of roving I’ve spun and I feel like I’ve already come a long, long way. It wasn’t until halfway through this particular batch that I had a personal spinning epiphany, and suddenly understood how to use my spinning hand and my fiber hand while my spindle, well…..spun! Pulling out the fiber toward the drop spindle with my spinning hand, pinching off with my fiber hand and bringing my spinning hand up the length of drafted fiber, allowing and smoothing the twist to meet my fiber hand. Repeating the motion and becoming smooth with it. Yay! Look ma! I’m doing it! Two hands! It’s a lovely little dance that for some unknown reason gives me a great deal of joy.
To ply my spun singles, I spun about half the braid, then wound it off the spindle into a ball to wait while I spun up the rest. When my pretty pumpkiny fiber (this is from Unwind Yarn Company), was all spun up, I placed my spindle in one bowl and my wound ball in another and proceeded to wind them together into one double stranded ball for plying. I got a lot of these corkscrewy things in the process. It’s expected, but I’m careful to smooth them out so they don’t get wound into the ball. That would really put a kink into the plying.
Plying on the drop spindle? So simple! I just wound my two stranded singles onto the empty spindle by holding the end against the whorl, wrapping around the shaft in a downward spiral a few times, then wrapping back up over the first wraps to secure them, coming up through the hook, feeding an arms-length of singles out and spinning counter clockwise. (My singles were originally spun clockwise. Of course, you’ll just go the opposite way the singles were spun). The spindle stops on it’s own when the energy of the spinning/plying equalizes and I noticed that the corkscrewy kinks I was seeing in the singles are gone. In their place: Yarn!
and don’t we all love that? ♥