Sunday, April 7, 2024

Silk Road Red

So as I explained in my last post, spinning is all I can do for now while my back heals and I have been enjoying the time.  I have become much more familiar with my Hansen e-spinner and how to get the best out of it and my spinning / plying has improved.  It's a different approach to a regular spinning wheel and takes some time to get used to. (Or it did for me at least).  Anyhow, it has saved my arthritic feet and I enjoy the portability of it.    

Some how I found this web site: FellviewFibres on line and bought some of their rolags to spin.  There is always a little bonus rolag as a tease and it sure works!   Her rolags, puni's and batts are literal works of art and a joy to spin!   Each one is prepared by hand and takes time to build an order, and she's very popular..... so orders can take some time to arrive.  (Subsequent orders get a 10% discount which is nice.)

I spotted this selection called Sogdian Rolags and the inspiration really spoke to me. I'm a huge fan of ancient textiles and so have researched the Silk Road, the various cultures along the route.   The Sogdians were a very sizeable empire along the silk road and controlled a great deal of the traffic along the Road.   They faded into obscurity and their descendants live in the general area still..... and a tantalizing glimpse of their history is in grave goods and mummies and some ancient city sites.

click to enlarge and read the inspiration

I have 'borrowed' these images from Fellview's web site as I failed to get decent pictures of the rolags before spinning. You can see how rich the colorway is.  It's a fine micron merino and tussah silk and a touch of ruby bamboo. 

I had approx 400 grams of rolags (or just under a pound.... 454 grams is 16 ounces or one pound)

I got four skeins of varying weights and they are simply yummy. Its difficult to photograph skein and red ones  properly so it will take me some time to find the right method to show them to their best advantage.

I recommend this book if this sort of ancient textile 'mystery' appeals to you. 

I discovered that my little Royal ball winder is not up to the task of winding the skeins into cakes so I have this ball winder on order and due to arrive this coming week.  Fiber Artist Supply Company made my fringe twister (with 10 clips) and they also now produce and sell Woolhouse Tools table looms.    

So that will take care of the winding....

Plus I have one of these yardage counters from Stanwood so I can tally the yardage properly as I wind them up.

Then next task is to design a paper sleeve to wrap around the cakes to have all their data listed ahead of (gasp!) selling them.  

 I'm not a knitter, an occasional crocheter and while I do plan to weave with some, not all will be kept.   I spin as I enjoy the process and find it calming, relaxing.   After the winter we had, I needed all the stress reduction I could get!

On a personal note:  Hubby is doing much better and we will soon find out if he is infection free, and a CT scan in late May will show how effective the kidney stone laser treatment was.    He back to puttering in the yard, and doing odd jobs, albeit with a daily nap.

Me? well the sciatica has reduced so it doesn't involve my entire leg and seems more localized to the hip area, but I'm still relying on pain meds to get through my day. So it's improving, but ever so slowly.....

It seems to be time to take a long hard look at how things will be going forward once I can weave for a time. I doubt whether I can be working two looms as quickly and often as I did before and must take a more sedate approach. I'm leaning more and more  to reducing to one loom only.   The Louet Spring would be the choice to sell as even with lifting the loom up and sitting on a stool, you still need to bend forward to do the tie up's.    I don't think my back will be so forgiving anymore, and I certainly don't want to go through all this again!    

So more downsizing to come......


Dianne said...

Don't have any qualms about selling your yarn; its gorgeous.
Sciatic nerves can cause the most extreme pain and take so damn long to heal.
Great you have colourful fibre to play with.

Susan said...

Thanks Dianne! My new large ball winder arrived yesterday and it's working hard already to get every skein all wrangled into cakes. I have the yardage counter all set up too and so have info in meter / yards..... also grams and ounces.

Still have to design a wrap sleeve but soon....

The sciatica has diminished but it is still grinding away and I haven't even looked at my looms in some weeks..... it's too depressing. I had an x-ray done finally and so waiting on news.

Lynnette said...

Oh my, lots of new and exciting equipment to play with. I love the idea of a yardage counter, much better than counting every round on the niddy-noddy and doing scads of math!
We just watched a Knowledge Network (BBC) show on the Silk Road which featured the Sogdians, they were an amazing culture and intrepid traders, so interesting.