My First Handspun Yarn

It took me a few weeks to finish the work I needed to do on the yarn I spun in Massachusetts, but now it's done. Isn't it pretty?

The item that kept from from finishing this project sooner was a niddy-noddy. I know. It's a silly sounding name, and as far as I have found, there is no other word for the device.  I looked to buy one locally, but I couldn't find one, so it was Etsy to the rescue. Here is the niddy-noddy I bought. And this is what it looked like with my yarn wound around it. 



The purpose of a niddy-noddy is to allow you to wind yarn, stretching it out at the same time you're measuring it. For example, I used a two-yard noddy-noddy, and when I was done winding my yarn, I counted the loops (33 loops), so I knew I had 66 yards of yarn.

I let the yarn sit on the niddy-noddy overnight.






The next day, I tied the loops together it in four places with undyed yarn (to avoid any color transfer), and then it was time to wash it. The spinning we did during my class was "in the grease," so the wool had never been washed. Here's what the yarn looked like going into the basin:

I washed the yarn four times, gently, in lukewarm water with a little bit of liquid laundry soap. The first three washes, the water was full, and I mean full, of lanolin. The water turned a deep brown. By the third and fourth washes, the sticks and twigs had started to float out of the yarn and the water was less and less brown. Here is what the third wash looked like:


By the fourth wash, the water looked pretty clear, so I knew I was done. I rolled the yarn in a bath towel to get most of the water out, and then I hung the yarn to dry over a doorknob in our laundry area, with the basin under it to catch the drips.


Even though the yarn is at best, inconsistently spun, I'm pretty happy with my first effort. I'm not sure what I'll make with it yet, but I'm happy that I have so much to work with.