Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Fibre Week 2012 - Part 2

Alrighty, lets start up part 2!  This one is ALL about the Master Spinners, Level 2 course!

Monday June 25, 2012
I woke up nervous as all heck. I'd not even handed in my workbook for level 1, and was having serious doubts in my ability and knowledge.  Will I even pass Level 1?  What if I get terrible marks? What if I go into this level that involves math, and tpi, and angles, and more scary stuff, and I just can't do it?  So, I took an early AM class, Yoga for spinners.  The class ran for 45 minutes, and it seemed to go by really quickly.   It did quite a bit to calm my nerves, though.   That is until I walk in and sit at the wheel and we start covering basics of twist and how to tell what just is wrong with that unbalanced skein.  I get it now, but at first it confused the heck out of me.  If your skein twists in a "Z" direction, it needs more "Z", and less "S".  So if the singles are spun "Z", then you need more "Z" in the singles, or less "S" in the ply.  But if your yarn kinks back "S" way, then you've plied to lightly, or over twisted your singles.  This threw me for a loop at the time.  And I went for lunch feeling very lost.  We also covered the color blending theory as well that day.  It's not as simple as 50/50 red/blue for purple.  It makes good sense though.  And fun to boot.  Our teacher, Gayle Valance, wasn't feeling all that well, as she was recovering from Bronchitis, so the class was relatively low key, which worked out okay to calm me after lunch, just do the practice skeins, and relax.
Monday night was also the Fashion Show and Silent Auction.  There was even some live music as entertainment before the show!  Otto Pahl, the coordinator for Fibre Week, even dawned a cowboy hat and played guitar for some of the sets!  It was great!  I modeled not only my own garments, but some others as well.  There were plenty of great things in the Silent Auction, and I scored two piles of books,  and a puzzle.  Unfortunately someone made off with the knitted frogs I wanted so much.  Oh well, just the way it goes!


Tuesday June 26, 2012
I had a hard time getting out of bed, and out the door in time to get to the AM Yoga for Spinners session, which was to bad.  I really enjoyed it the first time around.   We got to class and Gayle told us she'd been to the hospital the night before.  It turns out she had pneumonia! My goodness.  She kept teaching anyway,  which is both brave and crazy.  On Monday we were asked to wash and finish our skeins that we spun on Monday, and hand them in so we could go over them.  This is when I regained all my confidence and then some.  Gayle went over every single skein, remarking on each of their strong parts and their weak parts, where they could improve, and how to go about doing that.  When she got to my skein, she lifted it up looked and said "This is excellent"  I promptly got an elbow in the ribs on each side from my class mates.  I tried my best, and it was deemed excellent by a pro!  Very worth the elbows!  There was more work on determining ratios and the math of how to spin to get a certain twist per inch, the 2/3's rule of ply, and other very technical things that sometimes go against my grain to just spin and come what may.  This is why I'm taking the course though.  More control.  I want to be able to recreate and control my spinning.  But I'll still goof off at the wheel now and again.
I took the Spinning as Meditation class after the long day of math and technical spinning.  It was so relaxing, and quite interesting.  And she had Chocolate.  It was good chocolate.  It took me 3.5 minutes to eat a single square.  I sure wish I could find 20 minutes in my daily life to do this every day.  Maybe once the kids are smidge older.

Wednesday June 27, 2012
Oh Wednesday,  what an adventure.  Wednesday was the day we started to delve into other fibres.  Llama, mohair, and alpaca specifically.  Now, if you know me, or have read my blog, or follow me on twitter, or stalk me on Rav or Craftster, you'll know I've discovered an allergy to alpaca.  I thought I'd be perfectly fine to be in the room with an alpaca fleece, so long as I didn't touch it.  And oh boy. Was I wrong.   Not even 5 minutes after Gayle dumped that alpaca fleece onto the floor did my throat start to tickle.  Then my chest started to tighten.  Then I had to excuse myself from the room.  Luckily it was nearly lunch, and I could be out of the room for a good while and not miss anything.  My wonderful class mates cleaned up the room, stuck a fan on, and tried their best to remove any visible traces of alpaca from the room.  Thinking this would be okay, I returned to class after lunch.  And then my throat and chest began to tighten in ernest.  I took a chlorotripilon, and had to leave the room.  My wonderful classmates joined me in the hallway to discuss Mohair.  By the end of that discussion, I was in a drug induced blur, and ended up taking a 20 minute cat nap.  i woke up and pulled all my gear into the hallway and spun mohair alone.  Which was a heck of a lot better then spinning mohair in an environment that cause my throat and chest to tighten.  After class I promptly went to the pharmacy and bought some non drowsy antihistamines. And then I went and had a nap.
That evening was the Potluck supper, where everyone who is still at Fibre week brings a dish, and enjoys the company of others who share at least one thing in common.  I woke up from my nap and headed right over, still in a daze from the chlorotripilon.  I knew we had the test on Thursday, but I said to heck with studying, I was going to hang out with my Fibre Week friends.  And I did just that. It was a good night.

Thursday June 28 and Friday June 29, 2012
I woke up in an antihistamine induced fog, but proceeded to take the non drowsy type anyway.  And given that I spent all of Thursday and Friday that way because of the drug cycle the Pharmacist gave me (non drowsy in the AM and Drowsy in the PM for 4 days) both days kind of blurred together.  So I'll go over what I can remember of those days!  We covered braiding and needlework, and spinning to suit those.  We also covered drop spindles, and wheel mechanics.  Now I understand my Aura better, at any rate.  Oh! and the test.  It wasn't as bad as I'd expected it to be, and only got 2 of the answers relating to the Alpaca wrong.  Not so bad, for not studying.  I do know that by Thursday Gayle was feeling better, if exhausted yet.  But class became more lively, and she admitted that she packed the first days in fear of not being able to last the week.   I don't blame her, really.  She had pneumonia! I'm amazed she made it to class at all!  Because there was not much to do by the end of the day, Gayle looked over our last set of skeins in a one on one way.  This gave me even more confidence, because there wasn't much at all wrong with my work.  It was over all even, and all spun with enough twist to be resilient. We got out by 2:00pm on Friday, as we covered all the course material.  Most of us went over to the library and had a look at the Level 6 in depth studies.  There was an amazing variance in amount of written, and amount of yarn work, (some had more of the first, and less of the second and vice versa) but it did give me a good idea of the amount of work I should be putting in.

It was a really awesome time, and I'm eager to get to the homework done.  Only now I've gone and sprained my wrist.  So all I can do is the reading and research.  And I just want to blend and spin!  Maybe its for the better, as you all know, and I know to well, the written work is the part i would put off until the end, and that's not a good idea at all.  No repeats of level 1 workbook anxiety and stress!

Fibre Week 2013 is June 21- June 28.  My calendar is marked!  And I'm ready to go! well, except for the homework of course!

~Kara

p.s.  Sorry no pics, but I'll share once I get spinning again.


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