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I’ve missed you guys. No, really – I have. The thing is, finding the time, and more to the point, the energy, to write about what’s going on and get myself organised with pictures and the like has been really hard since I started the new job.

There’s a few reasons for that. My new job is in customer service, and since I’m not a great people person it takes a hell of a lot out of me every day to be “on” the whole time I’m at work. But I think I’m getting better with it, and I’m sure achieving a lot both at work and at home.

Another factor is the enforced time away from the Internet. That’s made me drift from the jacked-in, connected-up person I was and I’m finding it harder and harder to engage with the Internet of late. I think, honestly, that I like this state of being, but I’d like to mitigate the drift by widening the scope of this blog to include not just the fibre arts, but other things that I’ve been getting up to, and exciting changes and forces in our lives.

Finally, because it’s spring here, we’re working frantically to get the house and yard ship-shape before the Long Hot sets in. Summer, in the dry areas of Australia, is a daunting, endless, harrowing thing, and come the beginning of March here in Perth, I know I’m going to be dragging my carcass out of bed and casting my eyes towards that dusty white sky, muttering and wishing for the reprieve of the moisture-bearing Fremantle Doctor (the south-westerly winds that blow in and cool us down) or even the blessing of a little – just a little! – rain. I’ve lived in hotter places, sure; but the white sand plain on which Perth squats and sprawls is a special, glarey, sun-beaten case.

But enough of that! Today, I do actually have some spinning to show off! It’s a Crown Mountain Farm club shipment (April, Cheviot in “Dune”, since you asked) and I planned to spin a relatively fat, squishy 2-ply.

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Well, that didn’t work. Cheviot’s weird, man. It seems lively and squishy, but then turns around and won’t act like a squishy fibre. Then suddenly it’ll feel more like a hairy longwool or double-coat, but when you ply it you get bloom. I dunno. The 2-ply I was getting during the plying pass just did not cut the mustard. I didn’t like how limp, stringy, and skinny it was; so I wound off what I’d plied into a butterfly, then cranked more twist into it…then wound it off the bobbin into a centre-pull ball, and turned around and cabled that sucker.

Plying took a lot longer than I had planned, therefore, as the 2-ply yarn was skinnier and I was putting more twist in than I’d thought I needed. Add the winding off and the cabling, and this baby took nearly all day to ply and cable, so it’s a good thing I like it, isn’t it? It looks like a caramel Jersey cow, so I’m calling it “How Now”. It’s about 123m of 8-9wpi 2×2-ply, beautifully balanced and much squishier than the original plied effort was going to be. I think it’ll make a great weft for a little floor rug or somesuch.

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