Wednesday, January 25, 2012

The Art Roving Hackle Part 3: Making Textured/Chunky Art Roving

I had all the pictures taken for the tutorial using the art roving you see to the left. Really. Me, being the technologically advanced person that I am hit a button on my keyboard and my computer swallowed all but the 4 photos here. Did you hear me scream? That's alright though because I have a trick I discovered recently that I can share with you in this tutorial. I call it "The Ellis Technique" also known as "Reloading". Don't ask unless you really want to know the story behind that, it'a a little weird.


There are many different ways you can prep your fiber and load it onto the hackle to achieve various effects for spinning. You can load locks, top, etc, directly onto the hackle much like we did in the 1st and 2nd ARH (Art Roving Hackle) tutorials. You can double layer your colors so that when you Part Don King's Hair your roving dizzed off the tophalf of the hackle will match the roving you diz off the bottom half. Again, many different ways to prep your fiber. I do, however, suggest you use at least one fluffy "grabby" fiber to help "glue" everything together. For instance, kid mohair locks are great in art roving but your roving would fall all to pieces if this were the only fiber you loaded on your hackle.
For this tutorial I chose to grab various types of fiber~~~silk, bamboo, firestar, sparkle, faux cashmere, kid mohair locks, romney, cormo, and merino fleeces...the latter 3 being my "glue". I then talked Alex into running it through my Fancy Kitty bench picker twice for me. He's a sweetheart. This opened up locks , blended the fibers and colors some and got rid of a bit of the vegetable matter.

We're going to do something a little bit different this time. You can obviously load the hackle , Part Don King's Hair and diz as we did in previous tutorials but we're not this time. Grab a handful of your fiber and lash it onto the not lash on more than 1.5oz total because we are going to diz across the whole face of the hackle!!! If you pack to much on you will get more waste. I've found that approx. 1.5 oz will give me enough dizzed fiber to make it worth going to the trouble and not so much waste that I want to grit my teeth.


This is so simple you'll wonder why you didn't think of it.........or why I didn't think of it months ago. I still don't know why I didn't think of it sooner! Start dizzing across the whole face of the hackle from right to left. When you get to the end DON'T DIZ ALL THE FIBER OFF!! Leave a little on the hackle and the diz in place. I found it very helpful to have a chair to catch all the dizzed roving.

Clean the waste off of the hackle and set aside being careful not to disturb the fiber your diz is on. Now, with approx. 1.5 oz of fiber, RELOAD your hackle from the point you stopped dizzing down to the other end. To start dizzing again, pull your diz back toward you, grab a little bit of the reloaded fiber and tuck it into the hole of the diz along with the 1st load of fiber so it pulls through when you diz off the remainder of the first loading to start dizzing the second batch. Diz across and stop just before you get to the end. Continue to reload and diz back and forth across the face of the hackle until you've dizzed all your fiber. This will produce a continuous strand of roving provided you don't break it when dizzing. I suggest rolling it into a ball when you're done much like you would ball up yarn.

I had 6.2 oz of fiber that I started with. After loading the hackle a total of 4 times I was able to diz off a 5.4 oz roving ball and had 0.8 oz of waste that I'll toss in my drum carder. Not bad!! Again, remember that the amount of waste you get will greatly be determined by the type of fiber you use, how the fiber is prepped, how much you load on the hackle, and your dizzing technique. Dizzing does take practice to get the best results. That's it for the Art Roving Hackle Tutorials.

I'll be posting the first of the Comb and Hackle Tutorials sometime after the 1st of February.

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