as boxedA couple of weeks ago, I got an email asking if I would be interested in reviewing the Louet Spinzilla 2015 September Fiber Pack which I agreed to do…and then it came…and it was like a little avalanche of fiber!  The box contained far more than I expected.  This is the fourth fiber pack Louet has designed for Spinzilla 2015.  This pack contained  1 lb Wensleydale Top,  1 lb Superwash Merino Top,  1 lb Wool/Mohair Blend and a Gaywool Dye Starter Kit in their Bush Blends.  The regular retail of these products is $184  but the pack is offered for sale at $85 — so it’s a great bargain.  To make it even better, the pack includes a 20% off coupon on purchasing more of the dyes.

Wow…ok…this isn’t the type of fiber I normally work with nor were the dye colors ones I would typically pick, so what a great challenge for me.  I started assessing some dyeing options first by playing with the samples off of the sample card:

Dye samplesThen, I figured I would go ahead a dye each of the three fibers in each of the six colors.  I separated the fiber and then tied up six bundles each containing equal amounts of the Superwash, the Wensleydale and the Wool/Mohair Blend.  I prepared some pans for oven dyeing and got cooking:

Dyeing
Garnet, Alpine and Iceberg colorways

After everything was dyed, rinsed and dried, I had these pretty bundles:

Garnet
Garnet
Oak Bark
Oak Bark
Rosemary
Rosemary
Willow
Willow
Iceberg
Iceberg
Alpine
Alpine

In the Iceberg colorway, you can really see the difference in the way the fibers took the dyes.  The Superwash saturated the most easily while the Wensleydale and the Wool/Mohair did not saturate as much.

My next design decision was how to combine the fibers for spinning.  Because of the vibrancy of the Superwash samples, I decided to spin them all as singles and then ply them for a Six Ply and I’m so happy I did!

Bobbins for six ply

Six ply

Now, left with the Wool/Mohair and Wensleydale samples, I wondered whether to combine them in some way or just spin them on their own.  The Wool/Mohair seemed to be crying out to be made into some batts whereas, the Wensleydale whispered to be left alone.  However, when it came time to make the batts, I decided to consult with the Pantone Color Report for Fall 2015 first:

Dye samples with Pantone report

I know it sounds a bit like consulting with an oracle, but it works for me.  From looking over the color report and thinking about what I had, I made three batts from the Wool/Mohair:

Oak Bark and Iceberg with silver sparkle
Oak Bark and Iceberg with silver sparkle
Alpine, Iceberg, Willow and Rosemary
Alpine, Iceberg, Willow and Rosemary
Garnet, Iceberg and Oak Bark
Garnet, Iceberg and Oak Bark

And, from these batts came these yarns:

Oak Bark and Iceberg corespun and plyed
Oak Bark and Iceberg corespun and plyed
Alpine, Iceberg, Willow and Rosemary simply corespun
Alpine, Iceberg, Willow and Rosemary simply corespun
Garnet, Iceberg, Oak Bark spun with an autowrap and then coiled
Garnet, Iceberg, Oak Bark spun with an autowrap and then coiled

OK, coming into the home stretch now, I grabbed the Wensleydale top samples in Garnet and Alpine and let it just be itself in simple two ply yarns:

Garnet Wensleydale skein
Garnet Wensleydale skein
Alpine Wensleydale skein
Alpine Wensleydale skein

I love these yarns!  I can’t wait to weave with them.  It’s hard to see from the images, but the Wensleydale has a gorgeous sheen and the colorways are so natural and lovely looking.  As many of you know, I’m  used to challenges involving unusual (ok, weird a lot of the time) things, so this was a great opportunity for me.  These fiber packs are a lot of fun and really a good buy.  Thanks, Louet!!!

 

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One thought on “A Different Kind of Challenge: Working with the Louet Spinzilla 2015 September Fiber Pack

  • September 28, 2015 at 11:44 am
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    Love the colors and want to learn how to spin. Please keep me informed
    Lynda Prucha

    Reply

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