Thursday, January 10, 2008
My Shetland Handspun Palette
These are my 15 Shetland yarns. They represent not only a glorious range of natural colors, but many textures as well. In fact, I'd have to say that Shetland sheep appear to offer the widest variety of fleece of any breed I've ever worked with.
Colorwise, my samples are not exhaustive. Shetlands are recognized to have 11 distinct colors, and 30 patterns and markings. That could make endless combinations!
In regards to fleece types, NASSA (North American Shetland Sheepbreeders Association), states that there are three fleece types recognized in American Shetlands: kindly or single-coated, long and wavy, and beaver or double-coated. All of these are represented in my yarns.
My spinning plan was that all my Shetland yarns should be approximately the same WPI (wraps per inch.) While semi-successful at this, it was harder than I anticipated, due to the wide range of fleece characteristics such as crimp, wave, elasticity, and loft.
My knitting plan is something Fair Isle; either a vest or a sweater. I'll start by knitting gauge swatches, which will probably help me choose which yarns I will end up using, as I will want to use the ones closest in grist. I'll also need to figure what kind of yardage I actually have, as I begin to look at patterns. So the planning may take awhile. Hopefully I'll be able to make some progress before our weather gets too warm.