Friday, October 9, 2015

The Breed Diaries: An introduction

When I started crocheting (and 6 months later knitting)  ten years ago, I didn't pay much attention to the yarn I knitted with. Patton's wool was a favorite, because it was cheap, easily available and felt good in my hands. But Red Heart was cheap, and came in HUGE skeins. I didn't quite understand yarn weight, which led to a hideous brown wool sweater knit on size 3 needles in worsted weight that could stand up on it's own, let alone the structure of yarn.

   Enter Ravelry. At first I resisted the site, because I didn't want to have to wait for an invitation. But, eventually I joined, and I learned about other sources of yarn besides Joann's and Michael's. Between Ravelry and my grandmother's gifts of yarn and kits, I learned that cotton makes my hands hurt, brushed Suri alpaca makes me angry, and angora makes me itchy.

   Then I decided I wanted to learn how to spin, and a whole new world was opened to me. My first attempts at spinning were...laughable, and for the first year of spinning, I didn't really pay attention to sheep breeds as much as I paid attention to color and whether or not it was wool. I didn't start paying attention to breeds until I made my first trip to Rhinebeck, and discovered the joys and frustrations of trying new sheep breeds. After that, I started to pay attention to what I spun. Now, this may be because spinning finally made sense to me, or may be because that was the year I also got my spinning wheel, but this was a major sea change in how I choose what I spin.

Now I am going to catalog my spins and impressions.
The Breed diaries is an on going series about the different sheep breeds I am spinning (or have spun), and my impressions of the fiber. I am far from an expert, and every spinner/skin type is different, so please don't write off a breed if I'm not a fan!


  1. I'm where you were then - I don't pay much attention to what I'm spinning. I basically just look to see if it's pretty and if it is washable or not. Slow progress, but progress nonetheless. Before I start getting more familiar with different fibers, I want to get better at spinning. I'm preeeeety mediocre. Thank goodness it's fun!!

  2. And that's ok! Honestly, I don't think these posts will be 100% interesting to most people. Wool is wool to a lot of people, and going on about how Wensleydale is supposed to have a lot of luster and how Jacob's are awesome and adorable primitive sheep is just....silly.