About a week ago a mysterious package showed up on my doorstep. It was from my friend The Belly Dancer, and guess what it contained?
This is wool that's not ready to be spun yet, and I've never gotten ahold of anything like this before. It needs to be washed and, perhaps most importantly, carded. So if I want to do anything (other than ooo and aah over it) with this present I have three options (ok, only two once my budget is taken into account):
1) make do with something I can buy from the local store, but which isn't actually designed for the job
2) buy some proper hand carders to do the job
3) buy a drum carder -- this is what I reeeeeeeaaaaaaaaallllllllyyyyy want, but it's just too pricy
Yesterday I got the above hand carders in the mail. And since I didn't think to remove the price tag before taking the photo you can see how much they cost ($58.95). I might not have bought them if I had to pay rent and bills, but as it is I'm living with my parents and have some of money in the bank. So I can indulge myself a little bit.
Today I finally started figuring out how to use my hand carders, and as you can see Kokopelle kept me company. Amazingly, he didn't actually get in my way!
I came to one conclusion: hand carding is dangerous work! lol
I'm sure that I'll learn to avoid cuts as I become more experienced and less clumsy. Plus my hands will hurt less once I've developed callouses.
And here is the product of my labor so far. They're called rolags. They're far from perfect, but I'm sure they're usable...even though the yarn is pretty much guaranteed to have an interesting character! :)
What I really need though is someone to teach me. I've looked at YouTubes but that can only go so far -- a video can't look at what I'm doing and tell me specifically what I need to do differently. I tried getting in touch with local spinners last year but had no luck; the contact person for one group had died a few months previously, and the contact person for the other never got back to me.
Maybe I'll have better luck finding a spinners group in the area this year.