I'm no supergenius, but....

...I think I just taught myself to Navajo ply:

It's way overplied (note the strangely twisty end of the skein below), and now that I consult an online tutorial I see that I am using my hands all wrong, but still, it plied up!

I tried this as a desperation move, as my rental wheel has only three bobbins, and I had to get yarn off of one of them so that I could continue making plied skeins. The bobbin in question had a single that, to put it politely, wasn't knitable as is, and wouldn't look good plied with anything else I have on hand. I don't have a ballwinder or a nostepinde, so plying with both ends of a center-pull ball was out. (Note to self: put Brian to work fashioning nostepindum out of Lincoln Logs). Someone told me recently that Navajo plying was sortof like crochet - you make a loop and keep pulling new loops in as you turn the wheel. That's what I did, in a fashion, and it sortof even worked!

So that's the good news. The bad news is on the way home from Bloomington I missed out on a fabulous fiber-related photo opportunity at Connor Prairie Living History Museum, because I left my camera in the car. There were sheep, spinning wheels, and drop spindles all over the place! There was a woman in period dress spinning flax, and another woman tending huge steaming dyepots, where handspun soaked in a cochineal dyebath. In the Loom House, a young volunteer showed me a rainbow of skeins dyed with onion skin, indigo, walnut, dandelion, osage, marigold, coreopsis, and cochineal. Oh, yeah, there was other stuff, but I wasn't really paying attention to the non-fiber-related exhibits.

I was so enthralled that it didn't even hit me until we were back in the car that I hadn't taken any photos. Oh well - sometimes when I am too focused on taking photos I forget to actually have the experience I am photodocumenting. Not this time, though.

I leave you now with further evidence that I am actively subverting the world's youth by introducing them to the fiber arts, one kid at a time. Here's my nephew Jake, now totally addicted to finger knitting:

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