Thursday, January 7, 2010

Red Batts and A Headband

When a person learns how to spin, their first handspun yarn is usually lumpy and bumpy, with lots of overtwist. The overtwist can be so bad that you have a tight coil and the spinner thinks, "This is not yarn! I have made a terrible rope." They are sad and depressed. Quickly the more practiced spinners say, "Oh, no, it is beautiful! You have made art yarn. Someday you will wish you could remember how you did that yarn." The new spinner looks at the experienced one and says, "You are absolutely kidding." Nope.

That is what goes on, almost everytime a new person learns how to spin. The new spinner's goal is usually to spin even, fine yarn. The kind they dream of putting in a knitted/crocheted sweater, shawl or even a woven suit. What they get, is for a designer hat or scarf, but they think it is for the garbage can. :)

The new person will practice and practice and will meet their goal. Gorgeous items will show up for show-n-tell and all will oooo and ahhhhh. Then the spinner says, "Self, let's do some bulky yarn now, or some single bulky or even some of the art yarn, you did it before." Then starts the learning, again. And you realize the experienced spinner from years ago is RIGHT! You cannot do it! So, you start practicing the art yarn concept. Sometimes you even have to take a class to learn it. Well, learning or re-learning art yarn has been one of my goals over the last few years. Also, wanting to spin a bulky single. I am getting there.

All of this to say, here is a headband that I designed and knitted out of a single ply, bulky handspun yarn. Then I embellished it with some 2 ply worsted weight handspun and some bulky single handspun yarn.

Back to the red batts from an earlier post. I decided I wanted to see what would happen if I lightly blended the batt with some black roving. So I pulled apart one of my red batts and made small enough pieces to feed onto the drum carder, again.

Then, after there was a layer of red on the carder, I broke off small amounts of black and fed that to the carder. I continued to feed a red layer and then a black layer. Eventually, I couldn't feed anymore onto the carder.

So, I gently pulled the batt off the large drum of the carder. It fluffed up, many times it size and I could see the layers! It was so cool. You can see the layers here, if you look closely. It looks like a many layered sandwich.

The next step will be to make the batt a roving. Watch for it. :)


  1. Makes me want to make a date with my carder.
    Love the bulky headband. Maybe I could make one out of the lbs. and lbs of handspun bulky rug yarn that has piled up in my studio.

  2. Your headband is very cute! I've been meaning to do some of those with some odds and ends I've got hanging around here. How do you make a batt into roving? I usually end up spinning off the batt which probably isn't the right way to do things.

  3. Hey, that headband looks familiar... did you make it narrower in the back like the one we saw? I think that would be favorable for people with hair that will hang over it.

  4. Yes, I did make it narrower in the back and it has a button too. :)