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.


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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