When spinning for exhibition and shows be sure to choose fleece wisely. Choose one that is:
- clean, to minimise preparation, leaving more time for the spinning
- open, to permit easy drafting
- the correct length for the type of yarn, eg short for woollen, longer for worsted
- the correct type for the project, eg Lincoln for rugs, merino for fine work
Spinning and Plying
It is important to select a spin that is appropriate. If the yarn is for a floor rug, then a strong, plied, worsted would be made. If it is for knitting into a jumper, then a soft, plied woollen yarn would be chosen. For an Aran-style jumper, a cabled yarn would be ideal. For an open, lacey stole or granny shawl, a singles woollen yarn would be fine.
There is a place for all types of spinning – a slub yarn such as is produced by beginners (and sometimes called “creative’) and readily spun from unprepared fleece is perfectly viable if a rough-spun look is called for, but for baby clothes, for example, it would decidedly be unsuitable. Likewise, a singles woollen yarn looks great in a granny shawl but would not give service if used for a floor rug (unless used for the knotted pile).
If spinning a woollen yarn, then do not spoil it with excessive plying. If spinning worsted, do not under ply it.
When fancy plies are called for, submit a selection of diverse plies. Remember a grandrelle is made when two different component yarns are plied, so that if one submits a hand spun plied with Lurex, a hand spun plied with any other type of commercial yarn and two or more different coloured hand spun yarns plied together, then one has simply submitted variations of a grandelle, and not different effect yarns.
It is important to submit skeins rather than balls of yarn. After washing or scouring all skeins should be re-wound and fresh skein ties applied. All skeins should be:
- of uniform length
- tied securely with a reef knot joining the beginning to the end
- tied in four places with skein ties of the same colour as the yarn
Washing or Scouring
If yarn for ski-wear is called for then only a woollen spin should be used – a thick, worsted yarn is too heavy – and the grease content should be preserved by washing the hanks in cold water. For all other yarns, the grease content should be completely removed. No yarn should ever be submitted without at least the suint content and dirt having been removed.
Rules should be very carefully read and complied with, and entries submitted in their correct Class or Section. Concise instructions should be given in writing as to the means by which goods are to be returned. No name and/or address should be visibly attached to the articles.