North Ronaldsay

I’d like to spin the fibre of a lot of different sheep breeds. There is a whole vocabulary of specifications to take account of and to get some sense from: staple length, crimp, micron count, guard hair, down hair, andsoonandwhatnotelse.

As in the beginning, I still like to not let too much theory influence my way of spinning, so I just get the wheel out, try to remember what worked and what went terribly wrong the previous times and start. There is a certain pertinence in making errors and then finding a way to avoid them. When there is such a wide field of possibilities, too much choice can kill the choice…

Today’s fibre is North Ronaldsay. I purchased it from Spunky Eclectic, a source for a variety of fibres. Additionally, I re-subscribed to her fibre club after a hiatus of about two years. I like the broad panel of wool I discovered this way. South African Fine is one of those happing findings.

When opening the ball of North Ronaldsay roving, the fibre seemed somehow flat, without bounce. I got 2 oz and began spinning right away.

To start, I predrafted to become acquainted with my new precious. Then I set my wheel on ratio 8, but very soon changed to ratio 11. Woolen spun, drafted occasionally when the fibre did not take enough in by itself.

Drafting:

One oz spun up:

It is amazing how much space this woolen spun roving takes up. With 1 oz my bobbin is 2/3 full, as for top prepared fibres this nearly equals the volume for 2 oz. The fibre, a natural colour, is slightly crimp, rather soft. Even the long guard hairs do not feel harsh.

The singles will be n-plied, I’d like to make some fingerless mittens from them.

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