loose bind offs and cashmere

Item #1: Knitters that complain of too-tight bind offs at the tops of toe-up socks – where are you?

That’s the first of the Sock Candy ankle socks (they’re actually higher than I expected – I weighed the skein as I went and knit right to 50%) and as you can see, there’s a bit of a problem. I wasn’t really trying to bind off loosely or anything, just with normal tension and in pattern (2×2 rib). Obviously I’m going to have to go back and do it again tighter! Maybe even go back to before the ribbing and decrease, since it does hit at a skinner place on the leg.

Item #2: Cashmere. I spun cashmere, and lo, it was…difficult. Man was it hard.

So slippery and short. I tried short draw – I don’t have much experience with it, and it’s too slow and too much effort. So many movements! I tried from the fold – okay, better than short draw, but I dunno.

Finally have mostly settled on a sort-of long draw – I pinch the twist back with my right hand, draft back with my left hand and slide them along together as a unit, more or less. It’s rather thick and thin, but still – so soft. I have another 50 g to spin up, then it’s plying time.

Unfortunately…there’s a bit of scurf in the fibre. It didn’t bother me at first, but I’m thinking it’s more gross as I’m going. It’s really not much, but still. (In case you don’t know what it is…it’s like goat dandruff/skin cells/ew.)

Bonus spinning photo – the second skein of the colourway from last time – you can see how even though the top layer on the bobbin is fuschia, it’s blue underneath! This one has less fuschia, I think.

raspy, take two

I chopped 16 stitches off the body and went down a needle size to boot – looking good so far. And the Pakucho cotton is going quite far – I’m done the waist decreases and am on the third ball. Not the hugest skeins, but I was expecting to use more than that.

I’ve been dyeing and spinning quite a bit (when taking breaks from the knitty sweater, I kind of…don’t really want to be knitting) and have produced some cool new skeins.

This is an ombre skein that goes from deep teal through bright teal, then fuschia. I love it! I dyed 8 ounces, and to spin I split it lengthwise down the middle, then split each half lengthwise so I can get 2 4 oz skeins with relatively close matching between the two plies and the two skeins. Usually I need to predraft a good bit after dyeing, but this roving stayed really fluffy – very easy to just spin directly without predrafting. This skein is 250 yards.

I also did up two skeins of black merino – I needed some quick-and-dirty spinning to do. It’s not as consistent as usual, and is thicker than usual as well – but satisfying! 250 yards each, so 500 yards total.

There will be some new skeins up in my etsy shop tonight, so keep an eye out if you’re interested in some of my handspun!