Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Spinning the Massam Roving

I have been busily handcarding my Rambouillet fleece, but couldn't resist getting started on one of my fiber goodies. The hardest part was trying to decide which one to spin first. I finally chose the Massam. It is a lovely pewter color, plus I am thinking of painting some of the white rovings, so I figured this was a good place to start.

It is a British breed, also known as Marsham. It was developed by crossing Teeswater or Wensleydale rams with Swalebreed ewes, producing sheep with heavy longwool fleeces.

Massam roving in medium grey.The roving showed lovely subtle variations of medium gray fibers, beautifully prepared.

Sample for my control card.Fiber length - about 8 inches
Luster - low
Total weight - 100 grams
Scant VM, neps, and kemp
Spinning ratio - 8.5 to 1
Spun worsted
Singles - 26 WPI
2-ply - 15 WPI
Yardage - > 177 yards

It was not harsh to the hand while spinning, though I would not consider wearing it next to the skin. It is traditionally used to make outerwear garments, upholstery, rugs, and carpets. My sample was nice enough to consider something knitted. For this reason I used a lower twist angle to enhance the softness as much as possible to make it more suitable for a knitted yarn.

I was pleased that my Kromski bobbins nicely held the entire 100 grams.

100 gms on my Kromski Minstrel bobbin.
Massam handspun yarn. I don't have a project in mind for this yet. I think I'll wait until I get the other samples spun.

8 comments:

  1. Wow - nicely spun. I wonder if the different samples would weave up into a lap blanket for the sofa.

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  2. That is just beautiful wool - I wish you lived closer so I could sit and watch you spin - your yarn is so evenly spaced.

    I was sturck by the name of the sheep that this wool came from, since alot of times they'll take part of the ewe breed name and mix it with part of the ram breed name(my friend crosses shetlands with her dorsets - Calls them Dorslands) Ok, so then these would be Swalewaters or Swensleybreeds or my favorite that I put together was a Swaledale. Sorry, it's late and I'm being silly.

    I want to find out more about your crochet workshop too - having had my success with the premie hats, maybe it is time to break away from making baby afghans..LOL - T. :-)

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  3. Leigh, I gotta tell you that you've got quite a spin going on there. Your outcomes are just super. Yep, I've got a case of spinning envy...

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  4. Leigh,
    This is just beautiful yarn! What type of wheel do you use? And where did you find the sample of this breed?

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  5. Hi Leigh,
    Glad you like the Massam :-) I have spun and knitted woollen jackets and socks from it. They were very warm.

    Judy

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  6. Thank you, all! Kathy, I got the Massam from Judy (above). I used my Kromski Minstrel wheel (which I love.)

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  7. It's beautiful, Leigh! That was very nice of Judy, too. :) It's wonderful to see people use all the heritage and lesser known breeds.

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