April 24, 2008

Yellow? Orange? Green?

So waaaay back in January I said that one of my resolutions was going to be to spin something other than just worsted 2 ply wool. To that end I decided I was going to spin my own sock yarn. Luckily I had just the perfect thing on hand (it was a Christmas gift from my mom):
Cider Moon Roving in Banana Cabana
4 oz of superwash roving, Cider Moon colorway Banana Cabana

I did a little research and found out that a lot of sock yarns are spun 3ply. Also with a little careful preparation it’s possible to spin multi-colored roving in such a way that you get stripes. Spin your own self striping? I’m so there.

I took the roving out of the bag and laid it out to see what I had:
Cider Moon Roving in Banana Cabana
If I just started at one end and worked to the other end I would end up with the green and orange pieces at random in my yarn. Then whey I plyed the two together I would have no way of knowing how to match up the colors. So what I did was I separated the big, fat, strip of roving into 3 skinnier strips. One for each ply.
Cider Moon Roving in Banana Cabana

To illustrate the theory (crudely):

I also figured that I would be easiest to make stripes by keeping the color repeats as long as possible. That way there was a better chance of them lining up between the plys. So I didn’t want to rip the roving apart any further width wise – instead I wanted to draft everything vertically to create long stretches of the same color.

So at this point I just made center pull balls out of my 3 roving strips with the plan to pre-draft them vertically as I spun them up.
Cider Moon Roving in Banana Cabana
Also I weighed my balls to make sure that they were at least in the ballpark of being the same. They kindof were.

Then I didn’t do anything for 3 months because I was distracted by malabrigo. This week, however, the spinning bug bit me hard. Something about it being so nice outside made me uninterested in knitting. Instead I putzed outside and spun up all 3 of the roving balls:
cider moon banana cabana single ply
I tried to keep things nice and even and all the same thickness.
cider moon banana cabana single ply
Which is key in getting the color repeats to actually line up.
cider moon banana cabana single ply
But I’m not the greatest spinner in the world so it’s a bit lumpy.

Tonight I’m going to ply it and we’ll see if my self striping experiment worked!

In other news… check out this crazy fruit!
Horned Melon
It was easier to find at my friends grocery store than garlic. She lives in a very yuppie area. And obviously we had to buy it. Taking it through u-scan was almost a big fat FAIL (although hilarity ensued while trying). Luckily a very helpful bagger informed us (and the cashier who thought we were all sorts of crazy) that this lovely fruit is a horned melon. He did not know, however, what color it was inside. I guessed green and the other two guesses were orange and red. What do you guys think?
Still life with horned melon and friends watching an ANTM marathon.

I just think it’s cool looking. More melons should have horns.


  1. I'll guess it's a yellowish-melony color.

    That's how I would have tried to attempt the 3 ply self-striping yarn. Seems like it should work. Hope it works out!

  2. Citrus colors--love 'em!

  3. how about weird dark greeny????

  4. OHH your roving/yarn is so pretty!

    I'm guessing a pinky yellowy color for the melon!

  5. Wow, your spinning is so scientific!!! (And yes, the jr. high kid in me did laugh when you said "Also I weighed my balls" . . . just think what traffic that will bring from Google!!) Anyway, I know it's going to work out perfectly and you will have the coolest socks!

    I think the melon is purple inside. (Not really, but I wanted to have a different answer than anybody else!!)

  6. Love the colors of the roving - and your self-striping science! I would have totally effed that up at some point. So I guess it's a good thing I'm not a spinner. :P

    I'm going with yellow for the horny melon flesh. Hey, another great name for a band! Horny Melon Flesh!

  7. Anonymous12:14 PM

    The self-striping looks very promising. Can't wait to see pictures of the plyed yarn. Mine never comes out right so I do Navajo ply to preserve colors, but it does make for much shorter color repeat. Bet yours is gonna be fantastic. And I really love the horney .. er horned... melon, made me laugh.

  8. Thanks for the tip! It's so hard to know where it's worth going to look... I'm an import and Adam, well, he needs direction in the planning process!

    Good luck with the plying... I drooled a bit looking at the spinning pics!

  9. Anonymous6:15 PM

    Pretty woolies... your mind must still be back in FL. Reminds me of there.


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