How to Measure your Spun Yarn

Are you spinning for Spinzilla? Or just spinning for fun?
No matter your spinning goals, there may come a time when you want to find out how much yardage you’ve spun! I’m including a few resources to help you out!

Yarn

Step 1: Skein it Up

Step one of measuring your yarn is usually taking it off of the bobbin and putting it into a skein. A handy tool for doing this is a niddy-noddy. If you’ve never used one before, here’s a little video: https://youtu.be/VqGgqOzVNGg

Step 2: Start Measuring

There are many different ways to measure how much yarn you’ve spun. Here are a few tutorials that I think you’ll find useful… you’ll have to tell me which one is your favorite!

Wow… that’s a lot of options! But just as you discovered your favorite bobbin and plying technique, I’m sure you’ll discover your favorite measuring technique as well!

Let’s get spinning!

Upcoming Events!

Fall is an exciting time in the fiber world! Here is an (incomplete) list of some fiber festivals happening in the US & Canada. If a vendor has confirmed with us that they’ll be carrying Louet product, we’ve listed them!

For the most complete list of fiber events we know of, check out the Knitter’s Review List of Events!

Mark your Calendars: Registration for Spinzilla is September 1st

Spinzilla

Spinzilla is an annual (friendly) spinning competition where teams compete to see who can spin the most! Are you in?

Team Louet has won the past two years in a row! Whoa, go team!

Want to spin with us? Registration is September 1st at 9am. To register, hop on over to the registration page (be on time!) and sign up.

If being part of a team isn’t for you (or if your fave team fills up), you can ‘Spin Rogue’! It’s a great time to set your own personal goals and have fun!

So, let’s get ready for that MONSTER week of spinning!

Dye & Prep to Spin with Louet & Gaywool Dyes

Spinzilla is fast approaching, and now is the perfect time to prep your fiber for easy spinning! Click here for our previous post which covers more ideas for fast-spinning fiber preparation; today, we’ll focus on dyeing natural colored spinning fiber with user-friendly Gaywool dye to make striped rolags on the Louet blending board.

Supplies:

Prepare to Dye

Since we are planning to make striped rolags with one color that will be more dominant than the other, you will want to divide your fiber into two sections for each color. Color A (shown here in Iceberg) will be approximately 2/3 of the fiber your have on hand to dye; Color B (shown here in Rosemary) will be 1/3 of the fiber. Be sure to write down the exact weight of each set of fiber, because this will help you to determine how much dye to use in your bath later on.

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Your fiber will best absorb the dye if you soak it in warm, soapy water ahead of time. Fill a sink or basin with enough water to submerge your fiber, and leave to soak for about 15 minutes. Carefully squeeze to remove excess water from fiber before proceeding to the next step.

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While your fiber soaks, begin heating up the water in your crock pot or stock pot for the dye bath (make sure to use enough water to cover your fiber sufficiently. Dissolve dye in hot water according to directions on the package, add to dye bath and stir.

Time to Dye

Add fiber to dye bath and allow water to come to a boil. Gently move the fiber around in the dye bath using tongs, being careful not to felt – this allows the dye to be worked through more uniformly. If you prefer a more kettle-dyed effect, you can opt to move fiber less, though we do not recommend skipping this step entirely.

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After 15-30 minutes, remove fiber from dye bath – you may wish to allow dye bath and fiber to cool down before handling fiber. Be sure to wear protective gloves to prevent dye from being transferred to your hands. Rinse fiber in warm water and allow to dry.

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Time to Blend

Once the fiber is completely dry, it’s time to start making your rolags on your blending board! For this project, Color A was added to the left and right sides of the blending board, with a section of Color B in the middle, using the width of the opening for the handle as a guide.

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Blend as many rolags as you desire, or until you run out of fiber! Then, be sure to store in a plastic bag or bin to keep safe from pests until it’s time to spin.

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Be sure to share your Spinzilla fiber prep with us on your social media of choice! You can find us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest and Ravelry!

More Fun Fibers & Spinzilla Sign-Ups

Spinners, mark your calendars….Spinzilla is just around the corner! Team Louet has a title to defend, and we’ll be recruiting a few good spinners to join the fun for this year’s 4th annual Spinzilla, which takes place October 3-9, 2016. On September 1, spinner registration will open, and that’s your chance to join our team! Keep your eyes on our Team Thread on Ravelry or visit spinzilla.org for updates.

2016AugustNow is a great time to make sure you have enough spinning fiber to get you through the event – you may need more than you think. Luckily, we have lots of fun fiber options to help round out your stash, starting with our August Spinzilla Fiber Pack! This value-priced fiber pack is loaded with popular & interesting fibers:

  • 1.5 lb of Dyed Northern Lights Top – Color may vary
  • 1.5 lb of Merino – Organic Lammermoor (17.5 micron) Top

Regular retail of these products is $166.50, but you can snag yours for only $85 here in our online store.

fde3b48e1f9980e4_LargeWe’ve also just announced our next installment in the Spinzilla Fiber Pack series, which offers still more fiber options for the discerning spinner! Our September Spinzilla Fiber Pack includes:

  • 2 lb Dyed Corriedale Top (color will vary)
  • 1 lb Light Romney Sliver
  • 1 lb Dark Romney Sliver Regular

Regular retail of these products is $134, but this lovely collection of fibers can be yours for just $75 here in our online store.

Aside from stocking up on fibers, here are 3 more ways that you can prepare for Spinzilla right now:

  • Check your wheel for any parts which might need to be repaired such as drive bands and footmen connectors. You can find more information about caring for your Louet spinning wheels here in our support room.
  • Prep your fibers now! You’ll have more time to spin if your fibers are prepped and ready to go ahead of time. We have tips here in our Carding support room.
  • Make sure you have plenty of bobbins by clearing out all of those leftover singles that might be left over from plying.

We look forward to another fun & fibery Spinzilla!

Gifts for Yarn & Fiber Lovers

Don’t let the holiday countdown send you into a panic, we have some great gift ideas for the fiber artist in your life to suit every budget. Here are some of the best gifts to give (and get!) this holiday season. Enjoy!

Lost at Sea Handspun Shawl Kit

This affordable kit features a great shawl pattern designed by Laura Cameron using two colors of Louet spinning fiber (4 oz. each of Merino Top and Northern Lights Top). Pick from any in-stock color of these high-quality fibers (just leave your color choice in the comments section when checking out) or let us surprise you with a hand-picked color combination!

Click here to purchase.

Holiday Fiber Pack

Make the holidays extra-merry with this collection of luxury fibers for an incredible price – only $75! Enjoy! 1/2 lb of Dyed Merino Top  (color will vary), 1/2 lb of Northern Lights (color will vary), 1/2 lb of Bombyx Silk, 2 oz  Baby Camel Top, 2 oz  Baby Camel/Silk Top, and 2 oz of Brown Cashmere Top. Regular retail of these products is $204, so this is a phenomenal deal that’s sure to put a smile on any spinner’s face.

Victoria Art Yarn Kit

This kit contains everything you need to create beautiful art yarns on the Victoria spinning wheel: a mounting head, driveband and mother of all. When installed, this flyer changes the scotch tension Victoria to Irish Tension using the S10 Art Yarn flyer (item 1.510) and the S10 Bulky Bobbin (item 1.312), sold separately. Victoria Art Yarn Kit retails for $75; arriving December 11, 2015.

Click here to purchase.

Sharbella Shawl Kit

Here’s a great gift idea for the knitter in your life – an everything-you-need kit featuring a great new pattern from Very Pink Knits using Louet GEMS sport weight yarn! The Sharbella pattern is free with purchase of two hanks of Gems Sport, 100% Merino machine washable wool yarn, using the coupon code VPGEMS (all caps). There is also a FREE video tutorial to ensure success from start to finish!

Click here for more details at VeryPink.com.

Spinzilla 2015 Wrap-Up & FREE Pattern!

The results are in – and we’re pleased to say that Team Louet has won the Golden Niddy Noddy for Spinzilla 2015! We couldn’t be more proud of this year’s team. Thank you to our wonderful spinners for a fabulous event!

Here are the stats on our year’s team efforts for 2015:

  • 24 of 25 registered spinners reported yardage & will be receiving our Team Thank-you gift valued at $100! We’ll be creating a special fiber pack for our hard-working spinners which includes two 1/2 lb. bags of Merino Silk, a 1/2 lb. bag of Dyed Merino and a Lavishea Spinzilla lotion bar!
  • 21 of 25 registered spinners are in the Monster Mile Club! This means that they will receive an additional gift from us (their choice of in-stock fibers valued at $100)!
  • Eight of our spinners reported 5-digit yardage!
  • As a team, we spun a total of 271,607 yards – that’s just over 154 miles, or the equivalent of 5.8 marathons!
We’ve far surpassed our team total from last year (156,853) as well as the winning team total of 171,493, and we couldn’t have done it without each and every one of our fantastic spinners. We’d like to give an extra-special mention to our top 3 spinners who reported the most yardage for our team at the close of Spinzilla:
  • Tracy Hammond: 48,028 yards
  • Monica Bittner: 40,765 yards
  • Alexis Borsboom: 31,158 yards
We’re guessing these 3 spinners have pretty much depleted their fiber stash, so we’’ll be awarding $300 worth of in-stock spinning fibers (winner’s choice!) as a thank-you for their enormous contributions!
We also have a special gift for all spinners: a free shawl pattern to put your handspun yarn to good use! Laura Cameron of The Corner of Knit & Tea blog and podcast designed the Lost At Sea shawl especially for handspun yarn ! This gorgeous two-color shawl is shown here in the Ocean Waves colorway of Northern Lights as the MC and Quoddy Bay Grey of our Dyed Merino as the CC.

The shawl is knit on the bias with alternating sections of squishy garter stitch designed to show off variegated handspun yarns; the lace sections is ideal for solid-colored handspun skeins.

It’s Time to Spin!

Our team captain has been making rolags with the Louet Blending Board!

Spinzilla kicks off today, and we’re pretty excited about this year’s group of spinners for Team Louet North America! Here’s the scoop on this year’s event:

  • Spinning began at 12:01 AM this morning (in each spinner’s time zone).
  • Spinning ends at 11:59 PM on October 11 (in each spinner’s time zone).
  • Each team members’ yardage and finished yarn photo must be submitted to the Team Captain, who must submit each person’s results by 11:59 PM EDT on October 14.
After the results  are in, we’ll be awarding the following prizes to our own team:

Team Thank-You: Everyone who turns in their final yardage at the close of Spinzilla will receive a thank-you gift valued at $100! We’ll be creating a special fiber pack for our hard-working spinners which includes two 1/2 lb. bags of Merino Silk, a 1/2 lb. bag of Dyed Merino and a Lavishea Spinzilla lotion bar!

Monster Mile Club: Each person who spins a mile of yarn (1760 yards) during Spinzilla will win their choice of in-stock fibers valued at $100 – plus they will get a special badge they can add to their Ravelry profile, blog, or website!

Top 3 Spinners by Yardage: We’ll be awarding $300 worth of in-stock spinning fibers (winner’s choice!) to our top 3 spinners who report the most yardage for our team at the close of Spinzilla!

No matter what happens, we’re are honored to be a part of the 1,500+ spinners participating in this year’s event. 100% of the registration fee from each and every spinner benefits the Needlearts Mentoring Program (NAMP) to provide interested NAMP programs with spinning and weaving equipment and fiber (click here to learn more).

Best of luck to all spinners this week!

Spin with #TeamLouet this Fall!

Happy September! Spinner registration for Spinzilla begins today, and we’d like to cordially invite you to join #TeamLouet for Spinzilla this fall! The third annual Spinzilla event will be taking place October 5-11, 2015 during Spinning & Weaving Week. Last year, we placed in the top three teams for the event overall, and we’re looking for a few great spinners to join our ranks as we reach for the Golden Niddy Noddy.

In addition to the many prizes which are up for grabs for all Spinzilla participants, we will be rewarding our own team of spinners with lots of fibery prizes:

Team Thank-You: Everyone who turns in their final yardage at the close of Spinzilla will receive a thank-you gift valued at $100! We’ll be creating a special fiber pack for our hard-working spinners which includes two 1/2 lb. bags of Merino Silk, a 1/2 lb. bag of Dyed Merino and a Lavishea Spinzilla lotion bar!

Monster Mile Club: Each person who spins a mile of yarn (1760 yards) during Spinzilla will win their choice of in-stock fibers valued at $100 – plus they will get a special badge they can add to their Ravelry profile, blog, or website!

Top 3 Spinners by Yardage: We’ll be awarding $300 worth of ins-stock spinning fibers (winner’s choice!) to our top 3 spinners who report the most yardage for our team at the close of Spinzilla!

The registration fee is just $10, and all of the proceeds benefit the Needlearts Mentoring Program (NAMP), which fosters the spinners of tomorrow. Click here to sign up for Spinzilla – and be sure to select Team Louet North America!

We’ve been preparing for Spinzilla by offering specially-priced fiber packs each month, and our September Fiber Pack has just been released! This is our second-to-last fiber pack, and we’ve hand-picked some of our favorite dyeable natural fibers to pair with our Gaywool dyes, giving spinners even more creativity at their fingertips. This pack includes:

  • 1 lb. Wensleydale Top
  • 1 lb. Superwash Merino Top
  • 1 lb. Wool/Mohair Blend
  • 1 Gaywool Dye Starter Kit (Original or Bush Blend)
  • 20% off coupon for Gaywool Dyes ordered separately!
This is an excellent way to get introduced to the world of hand-dyed yarn and fiber. Click here to order yours today – quantities are limited! 

More Great Spinning Fibers + Drum Carder Sale

July Spinzilla Fiber Pack from Louet North AmericaThis month’s Tour de Fleece event is a great way to stay in top spinning form during the summer months. If you’re spinning every day the Tour rides (or even if you’re not!), the last thing you need is to run out of fiber! Our newest Spinzilla Fiber Pack is filled with exciting fibers at an excellent price. For our July pack, we’ve hand-picked this assortment of fibers to keep your wheels spinning:

  • 1 lb of Grey Gotland Sliver
  • 1/2 lb Optim Top
  • 1/2 lb Dark Coopworth
  • 1/2 lb of Super Fine Flax Top
  • 1/2 lb of Wool/Flax Top
  • 1/2 lb of Dyed Merino Top
  • 2oz of Brown Cashmere Top Regular

The regular retail price of all of these fibers is $196.50, so the July Spinzilla fiber pack is a steal at just $75.00! You can also purchase our discounted June Spinzilla Fiber pack here while supplies last.

While all of these fibers would be lovely spun up on their own, they can also be mixed and matched with each other or other fibers lurking in your stash. We’re seeing some really creative blended batts and rolags from Tour de Fleece spinners which are truly inspirational. If you’re eager to get your hands on a drum carder, now is the perfect time: our Standard, Classic & Elite drum carders are 10% off with free freight now through December 31, 2015 only at your nearest Louet Retailer.

To see how you can truly make your next spinning project your own with a Louet drum carder, watch the video above which shows how to card an art batt using the Louet Classic Drum Carder!

See it Spun: June Spinzilla Fiber Pack

With the Tour de Fleece just around the corner and Spinzilla on the horizon for fall, now is the perfect time to assess your fiber stash and start stocking up for the big event – it’s also a great time to give new spinning techniques a try so that you can have them mastered by the time Spinzilla rolls around.

You may wish to focus on speed with an eye on the Golden Niddy Noddy for Spinzilla; or perhaps you just want to try something new to keep things fun and lively while at the wheel. Either way, the great part about handspinning is being about to sample a variety of different types of fibers and sheep breeds, and today we’d like to share our June Spinzilla Fiber Pack as an excellent way to broaden your fiber horizons and encourage you to try something new!

Each month we’ll be introducing exciting new fiber packs which offer a variety of high-quality spinning fibers at an excellent value to you – up to 50% off regular retail prices, in fact! The June Fiber Pack is our second offering as part of our 2015 Spinzilla plans, and it includes the following fibers:

  • 1/2 lb of Dyed Merino/Silk Top
  • 4 x 2oz of Dyed Merino Top
  • 2oz of Baby Llama Top
  • 100 gr of Red Eri Silk
  • 1/2 lb of White Tencel Top
  • 1/2 lb of Wool/Mohair Top
  • 1/2 lb of Dyed Karaoke
The regular retail of these products is $196.50, but our June Fiber Pack is available for only $75 for a limited time!

Our 2015 fiber packs have been delighting spinners in the blogosphere recently; click the images or links below to read more and see spinning project featuring our fibers!

Alicia at Woolen Diversions recently shared this review which includes sample skeins spun from the May Fiber Pack.

Rachel from the Golden Rippy blog reviewed our June Fiber Pack and shared her resulting spinning projects here.

Last but not least, Sarah from the Knitting Sarah blog shared three finished spinning projects featuring fibers from our June Fiber Pack – click here to see more!

We hope you’ll share your own spinning projects with Louet Fibers here in the Louet Ravelry Group!