I didn’t have any significant, massive homework to fret about, so … I kinda just kicked back and relaxed this weekend. Mostly. I mean, Friday night and hung out with some friends and then walked about a mile and a half home, the latter mile of which was through the throngs of Lolla-attending suburbanites heading back to Metra. They were all dickheads, except for the one who was puking in the trash bin at Federal and Harrison, because hey, at least she hit the target she was aiming for. (Mostly I was cranky because even when I was walking along blocks that I thought would avoid the throngs of fleeing burbrats, they were still everywhere. Next year I’ll just cab it, to hell with exercise.) So as a result, Saturday I pretty much stayed in the apartment. I wanted to go hang out on the balcony and read in the sunshine, but, 95°F and 1000000% humidity chased me back inside. I got some spinning done — I plied the purple merino I’ve been spinning up on my shiny new Trindle:

2-ply merino wool

Yes, it’s true; I wound the plied yarn up on a cardboard core from a roll of paper towels. I love those for yarn storage, but the only problem is, I avoid using paper towels and try and stick to nice washable rags, so I literally go through about a roll in a year. (Well, unless there are serious cat puke issues going on. My environmental friendliness has limits.) So now I’m committed… no new spinning stuff that has to get wound off for temporary storage, until I finish up that merino and wind it off that tube, or finish another roll of paper towels, which, gauging from the current state of the towel roll, it’s got at least half an inch of towels left on, which probably means November at the earliest. Hmf.

Also, I have been toying with the idea of selling my Louet. It has, to be honest, never been productive for me. I think I’ve spun one skein on it successfully, ever. The purple merino that I’m drop-spindling? Literally made me lock that wheel in a closet for about a year after trying to spin it on that thing — the take-up was so strong it wasn’t putting any twist in, it kept drifting apart, I kept wasting wool bits (and it was an expensive bit of wool), and besides, it was not only not fun but it was actively making me furious. Since then I’ve tried pretty regularly at least once every three or four months — maybe this time I’ll discover the trick! — and every three or four months, I wind up disappointed and pissed off. I’ll spin up half a bobbin with no trouble, then the fiber will drift apart and every attempt to re-join it will just break apart on the hooks, until I have ten thousand bits of used-to-be-perfectly-good-singles sitting on the arm of the chair next to me and I am furious again. I actually wasted a good ounce or two of one bag of Louet Northern Lights printed pencil roving because I spun up a good bit on the Louet and then it broke, and I could not find the end. After literally hours of poking and prodding it with tiny steel crochet hooks and pins, trying to dislodge wherever the end had crammed itself in, I gave up and started cutting. I wound the entire singles off that bobbin by hand in bits and pieces, trashed it, said “fuck this,” and spun the rest of of the roving up, quite happily and successfully, on my trusty Babe.

Anyways. So yeah, my Louet has never been reliable for me, unless by reliable you mean “reliably useless and frustrating.” So I was thinking of selling it, and putting the money aside for a new one, maybe a Lendrum Complete (with the lovely high speed flyer! in addition to the others it comes with! LACEWEIGHT, YOU WILL BE MINE.). I mean, I never use it since it hates me, so I might as well get the closet space back, if nothing else. But I felt guilty, because of course, it could just be me, so I thought I would give it a go with some wool I had gotten from Cheryl as a gift. I didn’t think it was really slippery or short-stapled, so figured it’d have as good a shot as anything would, to work for me on that wheel. And … shockingly, it actually has kinda worked. I’ve spun up about 25g or so (neglected to weigh the bump beforehand, and I’m using a high-speed bobbin of which I’ve only got one so I can’t tare my scale accurately, alas) with about 125g left. I want to do this up as a 2-ply so I guess I’ll spin up the rest of this half the bump on this bobbin, if all goes well, then wind it off onto one of the standard bobbins to hold it, then spin up the second half of the wool on the high-speed bobbin again, then ply them from there. We’ll see how it works out. I still assume I am heading for disappointment, here, but if I am, it won’t be the first time I’ve wound singles off that Louet’s bobbins onto one of my Babe bobbins to finish the project on it. (And people mocked my Babe for being cheesy and a bad spinner. Shows what you know, Wool Warp and Wheel snobs. You can take my Babe out of my cold dead hands, even if I do buy a shiny new Lendrum.) Anyways, here’s how it looks now… actually, how it looked a while ago; I’ve got a bunch more spun up now than I did when I took the photo:

Louet bobbin

Lastly, I continued work on my Scarlet Swallowtail shawl. Nearly done with the second ball of yarn, and into the 18th Budding Lace repeat — by now, it’s something like 230 stitches wide. The pattern is sufficiently easy that it doesn’t take long to go across, really, but I did get held up because I had to tink back a couple rows — a week ago or something I thought I’d knit on it, but I was flat-out exhausted, and I made some mistake that I didn’t discover for a while, and I couldn’t cope with fixing it then so I just put the knitting down and walked away. So yesterday I fixed that, and then continued forward for another few repeats. I only have to do 19 repeats before I start on the next chart, so I’m feeling pretty good, especially with school about to be out and all. No new photos of it, though, as it looks the same really — misshapen blob of shiny red wool.

That is really about all I did all weekend. I did a little reading, I ran some shopping errands, I cooked and cleaned and blew off doing the laundry (a fine Sunday tradition), listened to Jose Contreras doing his level best to be a crap pitcher, cruelly denied the cats food outside their regular mealtimes even though they were clearly staaaaaaaaarving, listened to some podcasts and radio plays, showed someone at Jewel how to pick out avocados, and hung out on my balcony for a little while watching the city at night and listening to the reverberations of Lollapalooza bounce around through the white noise of air conditioning equipment and the L.

All things considered, I think I did all right.