Spinning Luxurious Camel in Brilliant Garnet

Sometimes you spin creatively, or in pursuit of mastery.  And sometimes you spin just to feel the fibers run between your fingers.

With the camel/silk blend that Heather Zoppetti chose for her Pyrope Shawl, you can do either. Heather spun the yarn for this project on a Tibetan-style supported spindle, making laceweight that was fine, lofty, and soft. The fiber blend, from Spirit Trail Fiberworks, takes advantage of the natural soft camel color to deepen the garnet-red hue. I have a bundle on my desk that I’ve been cuddling since it came in the mail (gently, so as not to disturb the fibers).1-20-16

Spinning two fibers as different as short, crimpy camel and long, slick Bombyx silk can be a challenge. In her article, Heather demonstrates how to spin yarn like this over the fold or from a puni, blending traits of woolen and worsted yarns and catching both types of fiber in the drafting zone.

Pyrope Shawlette by Heather Zoppetti

Pyrope Shawlette by Heather Zoppetti

The shawlette pattern that Heather designed to show off her yarn combines a geometric lace pattern with garter stitch—the perfect mix of easy knitting, something to keep your attention, and a lovely result. (It’s also a wonderful way to use up almost every yard of a precious yarn. The stitch count increases until the yarn is half used up, then decreases to the finish.)

“Pyrope” is the name of an unusual type of garnet that is always red. With a lace edge carved in sharp angles like facets and a deep red color, this shawl is precious indeed and a pleasure to spin and knit.

–Anne Merrow
Editor, Spin-Off

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