Swift We Are Not

So it’s probably not a good thing that when I saw this Pin, my first thought was, “Oh, yeah, I should put up that blog post I wrote earlier this week,” but there you have it. Let’s talk yarn balls:

The beautiful thing about buying hanks of yarn is that it’s rarely terrible quality. Holding a fresh, perfectly twisted hank in your hands is delicious. The problem, of course, is that you can’t knit from a hank. Storing hanks is also risky business if you don’t have good space to lay them flat. I find that it takes surprisingly little to jostle them and send them into a path of nightmarish knotting.

John bought me a yarn baller for Christmas last year and I have LOVED it for the purpose of taking store-made skeins and turning them into center-pull balls. My mom has always thought me to be a bit nuts, but I almost never knit directly from a ball or skein as-purchased in the store, even if it’s meant to be knit from as-is. So the yarn baller is perfect for that particular twitch of mine.

It’s not so great, however, for winding from hanks. Before the yarn baller, winding balls from hanks looked more or less like the first verse of “Take Me to the Fair.”

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wijIn4xQ8jw]

John is no less willing to hold my hanks (especially after he saw the right mess I made of it trying to ball lace yarn on my own), but the tricky bit is that the round and round motion you can use when you’re winding a ball by hand just doesn’t translate to the way the machine pulls yarn from the hank. After great difficulty with tangles in the hank we balled the other day, John decided to pretend he was a swift. He popped the yarn down onto himself and started spinning. This worked remarkably well…until he got dizzy.

Take number three had the same problems as just using your hands, though you’ve got to give the man credit for inventive effort and dedication.

We ended up finishing the job with what I hereby dub a “Yankee swift.” It might have worked fairly well…if John’s swivel chair wasn’t so heavy that it wore his arm out to turn it for so long. It was definitely too heavy to let the yarn turn on its own.

I think it might just possibly be time for me to invest in a swift, don’t you?