I finally finished up the spinning on that gorgeous Merino I showed you in the last entry. It was delightful to work with, slipping through my fingers with silky abandon. Following whatever idea popped into my head, I divided the fibre lengthwise into four more-or-less equal parts and spun them as fine as I possibly could, each onto their own bobbin. Mixing up the bobbins, I plied two bobbins of two ply yarn. See?
In order to make the cable work, these plies must have approximately double the regular amount of twist. I used the lace whorl on my wheel for the first time and the smallest pulley (highest ratio). Wow! Can that thing go! After an overnight rest, I twisted the two yarns together in the opposite direction to make a cabled yarn. This is how it looks (apologies for the crappy lighting and extreme close up):
Isn’t that a fascinating structure? Cables are incredibly strong due to their opposing levels of twist, which explains their use in ropes and construction (think steel cables on bridges. Yup, the same thing.). The finished skein turned out to be 272 yards (248.7 metres), which is a bit disappointing. However, cabling does produce a dense yarn, so it is heavy for its yardage (4.25 oz/120 g).
I am quite enchanted with it. The yarn is soft and squishy and begs to be made into a next-to-skin item. Maybe I can get my sock knitting mojo back?