Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Yarn Swift

I have a lot of sock yarn.  Many, many hanks.  Not skeins.  Hanks.  Which means they have to be wound before I use them.  Draping the big loops across the back of a chair, across my knees, or over my hands is not only ideal, but I've already encountered a bit of tangling trying to wind them.  (That's an understatement - one hank almost made me cry.)  Chris got me a yarn winder for Mother's Day, which is awesome except I still can't use it on my own.  Instead, he winds while I hold the yarn across my hands and attempt to feed it out at a consistent rate so he can create a perfect little cake of yarn.  If you've ever done this, you know how fun it is.  (Is my sarcasm coming through?)

The answer - a yarn swift.  Yes, Mom, I know you have always made due without one.  Yes, I know that hand winding the yarn is relaxing and the way you always did it.  And yes, all this "equipment" is silly and unnecessary.  And yes, you walked to school uphill in the snow.  Both ways.  In bare feet.  Carrying all four siblings on your back.  But that doesn't mean I don't want one.

There are two types of swift.  An umbrella swift, which looks like it sounds.  It clamps to a table top, opens like an umbrella (but looks more like a wood "skeleton" of an umbrella), adjusts at the width necessary for the size of the particular hank you want to wind, and spins horizontally.

The other kind is an Amish swift.  It sits on a table and if you're looking down on it, looks like a plus sign (+), or cross.  Pegs stick up on each arm (they can be placed in different holes on the arms to change the size), the yarn sits around them, and it also spins horizontally as the yarn unwinds.

So check this out - a genius woman came up with a cheap way to create your own homemade umbrella-style swift from plastic hangers, clothes pins, and a few other cheap supplies.

If you make it, send me pictures!  In the meantime, I of course ordered an Amish-style swift for $22 on etsy about, oh.... six hours before discovering the site above.  I'm just lucky that way, I guess.  But I'm excited to get it.  It should be here in time for me to wind yarn for the June KALs.

More sock knitting updates and pictures coming soon - hopefully tomorrow.  Patience, young Jedi.

1 comment:

  1. Wow, I just bought a ball winder and unbrella swift yesterday at Webs. Here it is:

    I have only wound so skeins into balls so far and I have not played with the swift yet. I am very happy with the quality of both products!