Bursting with pride darahmartin flounced in to the common room for her first spinterview with me, CherrySprinkle, Gryffindor's resident roving reporter. Over a large plate of lion cookies and a few tall glasses of butter beer I got all the juicy details about darahmartin's spinning hobby! She's a relatively new spinner but eager to learn more and we are all eager to see her finished wheel and a lot more yarn photos! Thank you for taking the time to sit down with me darahmartin, I had a great time getting to know you through our interview!
CS: What attracted you to spinning? How did it all start?
DM: Looking at all the beautiful fibers everyone else was spinning. I remember getting a spinning lesson in 8th grade at a “Pioneer Days” we had at our school. The instructor said I had very even tension and was impressed that I had never spun before.
CS: Was it difficult for you to learn to spin? Did someone teach you?
DM: YES!! I just watched a TON of YouTube videos and my DH helped calm me down when I couldn’t get it to work. Eventually it just clicked.
CS: Do you have a wheel or are you using a drop spindle?
DM: I started with a drop spindle because I was trying to save us money. I really wanted a wheel, but knew we couldn’t really afford one. 2 months later it was my birthday, so I begged everyone for one that I found on Ebay….and I got it!
CS: Do you prefer single or double treadle and why?
DM: Double, ummm…more evenly toned legs?
CS: Do you care to share with us where you purchased it?
DM: Ebay! (It’s a Kromski and I got all the contact info for New Voyager in case I have any problems…so it’s all good.)
CS: What is your favorite spinning fiber? and why?
DM: So far I’ve only been spinning on the wool log my DH found for me. It’s my free practice log until I get good enough to trust myself with the “expensive” stuff I got for my birthday.
CS: What do you like most about spinning yarn? How do you feel that handspun yarns compare to commercially available yarns?
DM: I like the creativity of creating my own yarn. It may not be as beautiful or as even (yet) as most of the commercial yarns I have in my stash. But I made it. There’s not another skein out there like it. I just love the personality and individualism that comes from handspun yarn. And anything homemade.
CS: What is your favorite spinning method? long draw, park and draft, etc.
DM: I’d like to learn to long draw, but right now I’m still on park and draft or my singles get really really thick!
CS: What about spinning has been the most difficult for you?
DM: That first day was awful. I was ready to chuck my wheel out the window because I couldn’t get the bobbin to take up. I just packed it up after about an hour and didn’t touch it for 2 days. Finally I was determined to conquer the beast and just went really really slow. Turns out I guess I was just treadling to fast so my singles were to thick to get through the orifice. Doh!
CS: How long does it usually take you to spin 4oz of roving or a 4oz batt?
DM: A couple hours (as long as the kids and the cats leave me alone.)
CS: What is your favorite handspun project? And what’s your favorite handspun yarn?
DM: I still haven’t made enough of a yarn that I think is good enough to make a project. I will be working on a hat for my first project eventually though. Darah’s First Yarn.
CS: Do you put any planning into your spinning ahead of time or do you just spin and what you get is what you get?
DM: I have BIG plans for my 2 nice batts, my practice log is just spinning for practice. I work on my tension and everything, but don’t stress if it’s not perfect. Plying makes everything better!
CS: Do you have a dream wheel or spindle?
DM: My wheel once it’s all decorated and finished. Hopefully my DH will finish it soon! (I was to impatient to wait to spin until he finished it first, and now he can’t get it away from me long enough to finish it.)
CS: Do you have any tips or tricks to share with us about spinning?
DM: Patience, and Practice. It’ll all work out in the end. And it’ll be beautiful!