from-wool-to-beautiful-yarn
Other, yarn

From Wool to Beautiful Yarn (How-To)

Few days ago I started another project. I want to create a nice big blanket for my future home. I loved these shades of blue and purple of the merino wool that we purchased in this shop: http://skorpilova.cz/vlna/.

For me, the colors conjure up an image of sea. I can almost feel the breeze on my face 🙂

This article can also be a small recipe or how-to for people who would like to try creating their own multicolored yarn.

Merino Top
Different colors of Merino Top that I decided to combine together.

Before you start spinning it is good to know for what purpose you’re creating this particular yarn. Since I want to create a blanket with this one, I would prefer the yarn to be softer. But we got merino top in the shop.

“Top” is a kind of spinning fiber that is best suited to worsted or semi worsted spinning. All the fibers are aligned. Worsted fiber is more durable, but not as soft as woolen yarn. Woolen fiber traps more air inside.

Carding the Merino Wool
Carding the Merino Wool

To prepare the wool for woolen spinning you need to process it first. In the picture above, I combined different colors on the hand carder. I hold the fiber a bit strangely because I was taking photo with the other hand 😀 Basically, try to apply the fiber so that it sticks out on one side. After putting the wool on one carder, you brush it off on the other one. You roll the fiber into a “rolag”. The fibers are not aligned in one direction anymore and you can now use the rolls for woolen spinning.

Here is a good instructional video for the whole carding process: https://youtu.be/suv54MWlyUs?t=1m36s

You can also roll by using your hands only, you don’t really need that wooden stick in the video.

Merino Rolag
Merino Rolag – a fluffy fiber roll prepared for woolen spinning.

After you prepare your rolags, you can go ahead and spin.

Another video can help you: https://youtu.be/0HNrflq9sd0?t=1m26s

The woolen or longdraw technique can be more challenging than the worsted, but you’ll figure it out after multiple tries. I also think it helps you understand your spinning wheel more and there’s something very artistic about drawing the yarn like that. I have to say I just love it 🙂 The yarn becomes something flexible, almost like some sort of rubber.

Merino Yarn Woolen Technique
This might seem like the end product, but it’s not 🙂 You still need to do more stuff.

After the spinning, it’s niddy noddy’s time! Niddy noddies not only have fun name, they’re also very useful albeit simple devices. You can use them to create skeins out of the bobbins of the spinning wheel.

Instructional video here: https://youtu.be/wnOlraopQ74?t=37s

Niddy Noddy with Merino Woolen Fiber
Niddy Noddy with Merino Woolen Fiber. And the dog.

The skeins is not the end of the process yet. If you’re not gonna ply the fiber, it could do some funky stuff when you knit.

Skeins and rolags of merino wool, woolen technique
Skeins and rolags of merino wool posed for a pretty picture 🙂

What we do is we put the unwound skeins in a bucket of hot water and leave them for couple of minutes. Then we hang them up diy-style!

Fixing the yarn, diy-style
Fixing the yarn, diy-style!

My blue yarn is still drying up so I can’t show you the end product yet. Since I’m going to use this yarn pretty soon, I’ll turn the skeins into balls of yarn. Unfortunately I don’t own a ball winder so the nostepinne will have to do. But it’s ok, old-fashioned is cooler anyway!

 

Crochet, Home Decorations

Get Them Easter Eggs Rollin’ :)

Easter is coming and I’m willing to bet it doesn’t leave any crochet addict calm 🙂 Gotta create! Gotta decorate! Get those Easter Eggs rolling.

Naturally, I created crochet Easter eggs. But I didn’t stop at that. I wanted to make them special and because I love traditional floral ornamets, I decided to try embroidery. I don’t really have any experience doing that, but I think the eggs came out quite good. As usual, I didn’t have any specific design in my head, when I started, I just sort of “went where my hands took me”. I tried to use natural colors. I think it matches the tree branches quite nicely.

Crochet Easter Eggs
Crochet Easter Eggs – an original design by Matylda’s Barn. These Easter decorations will make any room pretty.

I created these eggs for Crafters Gallery in Saraga Springs, Upstate New York. If you’re in the area, be sure to check them out! You can also order them at my Etsy shop or contact me directly.

Crochet Easter Eggs
Crochet Easter Eggs – an original design by Matylda’s Barn. You can buy them at Crafters Gallery, Saratoga Springs, Upstate New York.
Easter Eggs - Easter Decoration - Easter Decor
Crochet Easter Eggs – Embroidered crochet decoration.
Crochet Easter Eggs - Easter Decor - Easter Decoration - Embroidered Eggs
Crochet Easter Eggs and the first spring flower! I love coltsfoot, it’s like these little pieces of gold that you randomly find by the road 🙂

I’ll be back with more Easter stuff!

Darla the Crochet Sheep
Amigurumi, Crochet

Darla the Crochet Sheep

This was one of the most fun projects I have ever made. Crocheting sheep is really fun, I really enjoy giving them a character, their own personality. Darla is a sort of confused sheep. In real life, sheep often stop doing whatever they are doing and look at you like that 🙂

I started to crochet from the middle, the stomach area. I continued up and finished the head. The wool texture is made of little chains, so you can only imagine, how long did this take (yes, a loooong time!). After I finished the head, I started to stuff the sheep with premium polyfiber from recycled materials. It’s easy to find poly stuffing, you can get it for example at Hobby Lobby for a fairly reasonable price.

After I stuffed the top part of the body, I continued crocheting from the stomach area down. I also continued to stuff the body. When the body was done, I crocheted the legs and “hands” separately, then sew them on the body. I did the same thing with the ears.

I embroidered the pink coloring in the ears and other details, such as the nose and eyes.

You can buy the original Darla here:

https://www.etsy.com/listing/517842719/darla-the-crochet-sheep-amigurumi

Darla the Crochet Sheep
Darla the Crochet Sheep
Amigurumi, Crochet

Matylda the Crochet Sheep

This crochet sheep I made reminded me of Matylda, a very special sheep that my parents own. Read more about the real Matylda here.

I worked with 100% cotton crochet yarn and stuffed the animal with premium polyester fiber fill made from recycled materials.

The item took many hours to make, because I decided to create the wool texture with little chains.

Matylda the crochet sheep would make a great sleeping companion or serve as a cute decoration of any bedroom.

Buy the sheep before it’s gone >> Etsy

matylda-crochet-sheep-head1000x667

 

 

Crochet, Kitchen and Dining

Amabel Doily Set

Amabel is a classic old-timey doily set in natural ivory color that looks wonderful in any rustic kitchen.

At first I was a bit put off by the thin yarn that I chose to work with. Thin yarn means more work, but it also allows you to create very delicate lace effects.

I started at the center and worked my way out. I was shooting to create a design that incorporates natural forms and colors. Ornaments of this kind are timeless and look great with anything.

When the set was completed, I used a spray fabric stiffener. I put multiply coats of the stiffener on both sides.

amabel-coaster-crochet

The set consists of five coasters, one slighty bigger coaster (could be used as a gravy boat hot pad for example) and a doily.

The color on the pictures may vary because of different light sources.

Get it on Etsy now.

amabel-doily-set-crochet

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