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Hand Spun: New Spins on Traditional Techniques Paperback – February 1, 2012

4.8 out of 5 stars 21 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

The recipient of a bachelor's degree in fine art from UC Davis, author Lexi Boeger is the founder of www.pluckyfluff.com, an Internet-based forum for unusual handspun yarns and fiber art. She is the innovator of highly original new techniques in handspinning and is carving a place for handspun yarn in the realm of pop culture.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

Crazy Carding

Crazy carding is the perfect way for spinners, including novice spinners, to make highly unusual and creative yarns easily. The concept is to put as many different colors, textures, and materials as possible into one batt, then spin it into a simple thick-and-thin single. Very little skill is needed on the spinning end, and creating the batt is a fun and liberating exercise.

Crazy carding integrates absolutely any fiber or material that will fit through the carder’s drums, including silk waste, felted wool, tinsel, sequins, fabric bits, plant fibers, yarn, sparkle, silk noil, cotton, or anything else you could imagine. Be prepared to push your carder’s capabilities to the limit. It is normal for the machine to card very clumpy at first, and it will be hard to crank.

Make a sandwich!

The basic process for crazy carding is to combine several different ingredients at a time and send them through the carder in a thick clump. This will cause the materials to be minimally blended together and will preserve many heavy textures.

Short-fiber materials tend to get caught up in the teeth of the small drum and usually do not make it into the batt. To avoid this, sandwich all the short fibers, or other unusual materials, between layers of longer-stapled fibers such as mohair or processed roving. Visualize making a sandwich: spread a flat layer of mohair or roving out first as the bread, add uncarded locks (lettuce), semifelted wool (tomatoes), sparkle and silk noil (salt and pepper), top with another layer of mohair/roving (bread), and send it through the carder!

Repeat this process adding different fixings in each sandwich. Sandwiches should be about 3" to 4" [7.5 to 10 cm] thick. Card until the large drum is full.

Spin!

Remove the crazy-carded batt from the carder. Starting from the outside edge, pull off spinnable strips and spin a simple thick-and-thin single; do not overdraft. Allow the lumps, bumps, tangles, and textures to remain.

Tip: Card the batt only once. Overcarded batts tend to lose their interesting textures.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Quarry Books (February 1, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1592537626
  • ISBN-13: 978-1592537624
  • Product Dimensions: 9.4 x 0.8 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #227,340 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
If you are looking for some new spinning techniques this book has some new ideas. It builds on the techniques found in the previous book by Boeger called, "Intertwined" by adding some twists on the techniques in that book. Handwoven is full of "how to" details with great photography and illustrations.

I admit I was a bit disappointed seeing several sections from the Intertwined book were printed in "Handwoven" with the same exact photos. Upon closer inspection, I saw the reprinted sections do offer more tips on spinning that yarn and expanded techniques were added (great indepth details for "how to")...but they could have at least changed the photos! I am sure Lexi Boeger has mounds of beautiful yarns laying around to show off!

Handspun is full of beautiful photos and lots of tips and techniques. I recommend this book to anyone wanting to spin art yarns! It is an EXCELLENT addition to my library.
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Format: Paperback
Following on from Intertwined, this book has beautiful examples of techniques for spinning yarns. There have been at least two other spinning books recently, however I feel this one has the edge because it contains good projects. Includes fibre preparation - even crazy carding, fabulous yarns that any yarnie would die for, features spinners and projects. Twists, tails, core spinning and more. Great photos, great content that should be in every spinner's hands. This review first appeared on yarnsandfabrics website.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a great how-to for making awesome art yarns. From basic corespinning to advanced cabling and combining techniques, this is a great guide for creating your own works of art. It's easy to understand with great photos. I like how it included finished products, both for art yarns and for other fibers.

If you've ever looked at a crazy beehive yarn and wondered how the heck it was made, this is the book for you!
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I think this is a good book for people interested in art and textured yarn creation. There are books out there that are more instructional, but the photographs are fantastic and the interviews with other spinners is helpful. Sometimes it's not so much technique from other spinners that helps you learn more, it can be attitude and approach. For me, the attitude and approach were the selling points.
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My first spinning teacher showed me how to ply and double ply. Lexi Boeger with her book, Hand Spun, took me way beyond that! My favorite is the ripples, beehives (cocoons?), and inclusions. Pictures and inspirations abound in this book. Want to get creative? This book is waiting for you to open it. It's a cookbook of spinning inspiration.
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This is a glorious book! The photo illustrations are luscious! I have Lexi's previous book, "Intertwined" which I thought could never be outdone, but this does. If you already are not addicted to artist yarn's beware of this book, as you will be even if you have never involved yourself.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A great book full of wonderful ideas. Hand spinning at an Art yarn level. I liked the innovative way in which many fibres were used to make fun and fabulous yarns. Illustrations clear and large, a joy to browse.
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Format: Paperback
If you like extreme yarn and fun small projects that only require simple knit patterns you will love this book like I do. When working with crazy yarns complicated stitches rarely show so if you like your knitting simple but your yarn fancy these projects are great.
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