Does anyone else remember the matching game from Sesame Street where they would sing the song "Three of these things belong together/ three of these things are kind of the same/ but one of these things is doing its own thing/now it's time to play our game..."? I have wasted a lot of brain space on random memories and am now paying the price. [Following is a spinning post. Those interested in only the post-yarn-production aspects of knitting may feel free to move along, with no hard feelings.]
Here's my version of the game:
Which of these yarns is not like the others?
Okay, okay. No fair. It's clearly a trick question, since none of them is really like the others. I'm just not that good at spinning yet. These four skeins represent my four attempts at designing a yarn for my First Handspun Sweater, using three different shades of undyed BFL (which is a type of wool that I cannot spell, and so I am using the abbreviation, which has the added advantage of making me look like a cool insider with superior fiber knowledge. I call it this in person, too, since I also do not know how to pronounce the real name. Shhhh.)
The first skein was two-ply with random color changes in each ply. It was a little finer than the worsted weight I was going for, and I wasn't sure about the random color changes, so for the second skein, I spun each ply as a single color, a little thicker, and then made three-ply. Too thick, and I don't like the evenness of the colors. Very barber pole. Also, I think I plied a bit too tightly (if that's the right word) and the yarn is a little stiff.
For the third attempt, I decided to go back to two-ply, spin the singles a little thicker than for skein one, and make regular color changes for each ply, but ply them so the colors did not line up so that I would get subtle stripes. It's okay, but the color changes are still too regular. So for skein four, I went back to the random color changes and two-ply construction I did for skein one. It's okay, but some of the singles became a little puffy in the final wash. I must have spun them a little too thick. Sigh. Just call me Goldilocks.
Would it violate some spinning or knitting rule for me to just use all of them and call the finished result "handcrafted"?