Spinning Soothes the Soul.

Hello lovelies!

As you may or may not know, I’m currently in the thick of things, applying for PhD programs. It’s dreadful! The actual programs themselves are exciting and fun and challenging, and I know that clinical psychology is exactly what I want to be doing. No issues there!

The problem is that the process itself is dreadfully stressful. It’s quite writing-heavy, and that means that I can endlessly obsess over phrasing and whether or not I sound good enough on paper etc. etc. It’s horrid, because it’s not as though there’s anything I can do about it at this point. I’ve worked hard for several years in order to get myself into the best position possible now, and I think that my efforts have been largely successful. However, the many variables of the situation that are NOT under my control are understandably stressing me out.

So I’ve started scheduling little breaks for myself as sanity checks. When I feel myself getting too wound up about things, I go to the spinning wheel. Even though I’m only spinning in little bites while I listen to music (Fleetwood Mac seems to be exceptionally helpful in calming my mind. Side note: my dad was on one of their albums playing saxophone as part of the USC marching band. Is that cool or what??) anyway, even though I’m only spinning in little bits, for 5-10 minutes at a time, this is SERIOUSLY adding up. I’m currently spinning yarn for a pair of mittens and a cute beret, (patterns already picked out, I just need the handspun!) in a pink Polwarth/silk from Three Waters Farm and some plain Polwarth from PortFiber (which is even semi-local, up in Maine!) You’ve all heard me rave about Three Waters Farm before. Her color sensibilities are just lovely, and I especially like her tonal colorways, which spin up without too much contrast but with subtle shading throughout. I have finished the roving from there, which is shades of pink with a few pops of dark red and white for a little more variation. I love the yarn, but you don’t get to see it yet because it’s still drying. PortFiber is equally scrumptious, though different. The dyed wool is beautiful, but the shop has a lot of “naked” (or undyed, if you’re being less silly) fibers in a variety of gorgeous natural colors. I ordered some Polwarth from her because I decided that my pink TWF roving needed to be part of a hat/mitten set. Polwarth is naturally a bright, snowy white and soft as all get out, but this stuff is just pure spinning heaven. It feels like a puffy little cloud. The prep is so perfect that it actually seems to spin itself. It drafts smoothly and beautifully and somehow as it flows through my hands I feel my worries melt away. I think it’s the lovely rhythm of the spinning, combined with working with such lovely stuff that helps my stress just disappear. I tend to oscillate between knitting and spinning, but when the going really gets tough, and I need a hobby that will calm a troubled mind and help me relax? It’s spinning all the way.

This is also a PSA, letting everyone know that updates will be spotty at best until I break the back of this application beast. That may happen this weekend, I’m going to just hunker down and see what I can accomplish.

I’ll leave you with a few progress shots of the pink TWF Polwarth/silk, (which I lazily and shamelessly jacked from my Instagram) and a question. Is it completely weird that I’m excited about the subtle sheen in this from the silk? I keep thinking about how there will be a slight textural contrast and how the difference between the completely matte white Polwarth and the slightly shiny pink Polwarth/silk will make PERFECT mittens. I also think that the little pops of red will make this set match my red coat, and I am convinced that the whole outfit with a beret nestled fetchingly over my blonde curls and handknit mittens peeking out from the sleeves will make me look absolutely SMASHING. Of course, that’s my fantasy life, and the likelihood that these mittens and hat will even be done while it’s still coat weather is extremely small. However, a girl can dream of chicness.



  1. Yup, that yarn is just about perfect. 🙂
    Good luck with your application. (I’m a clinical psychologist too.)

  2. shellssells

    I always say that spinning is when I need to be mindless, and knitting is for when I need to be mindful. Good luck with the application process!

  3. That is exactly the kind of knitterly fantasy that gets us through all the steps to an FO, so you’re not crazy at all! I’m in the middle of grad school applications as well, it’s no fun, especially with a full time job. Good luck!

  4. I still don’t quite understand exactly the process of how you manage to turn such beautiful clouds of fluff into such beautiful yarn, but it is indeed beautiful in either form and I am intrigued!
    Hope you get your application sorted soon – best of luck!

  5. Good luck! You seem to be managing your stress well. I knit while I watch the videos for my online Special Education and Sociology courses, we have to sneak it in there somehow.

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