I love getting a brand-new, squishy skein of yarn as much as the next knitter, but I also used to kind of dread it. Un-raveling and balling-up a big (often tangled) skein is the absolute pits! I used to have a whole system that involved two kitchen chairs, about an hour and a lot of swearing.
But then, for Christmas, my husband gave me one of my most favorite new tools!
My umbrella swift! (I’m not sure which brand/model it is, but google “umbrella swift” and you’ll find a bunch.)
I always kind of wanted one, but never could justify buying one for myself. After all, I didn’t need it. I’d use it, if I had one, but not very often. Also, they’re a little expensive- and I hate spending money.
So all that made this bad boy the perfect Christmas present.
I undo the skein, taking off any scrap yarn that was used to keep the strands together, and put the big loop of yarn around the swift. Then, I take the end of the yarn and attach it to the top of my ball winder, and away we go! (Ignore the ugly avocado-green end table that I picked up from the side of the road. It might not be pretty, but it’s very useful.)I get the ball winder spinning, and the swift twirls away, unraveling the skein without a single tangle! It’s amazing. This time, I balled 6 skeins of yarn in about 10 minutes. That would have taken me hours without my umbrella swift!