Thursday, January 31, 2013

the deep blue

amythefibergoddess has been such a good sport. she took all my heavy hinting about the tempting bag of fiber in stride. while we were chatting this week (making arrangements for the drop-off) she was thinking out loud the pricing. we talked some more, and when i offered to be her first sale... she gave me the green light. i took four ounces and sadly delivered the bag, rushing to get mine on the wheel as soon as i got home.
it is exactly as vibrant as this photo shows. there are darker pieces of blue and hints of bright green and just what i needed to play with during these dreary days. so not my color, but it is just ringing  all the bells!!!
i've been reminded how much i love to spin this fluffy, puffy stuff. the colors shift just enough to keep me interested and literally spin themselves. i've almost finished the four ounces and have put in a request for more. i know this in going to go fast when other fiber folks see it ( and i want to be sure to get my share)
what will it be? not sure yet. perhaps a zippy pair of mittens (that would chase away the gray) or maybe boot socks, or ...... well, whatever it is, it will be bright!

Sunday, January 27, 2013

progress and temptation

i've started dividing my knitting time between my two projects. i just love this darn little baby blanket, and i can't give in and knit on it exclusively. so i've been sticking to the plan of keeping it as my travel knit.
i take it to the rink, gymanstics practice and even meetings. i learned to get the block started at home, then i can just cruise along wherever i am.
the ombre wrap is lovely. so much so that is being coveted by another. the eldest in this house has decided that she wants to have one and not just any one, but this one. i initially said no, absolutely no. then i considered that she doesn't ask for many handknits and she does have a significant birthday coming up, so i may be spinning more yarn!
this pattern and i have really clicked. i still find lace frustrating, and certain patterns really get me nutty. so either i'm becoming a better knitter, better reader or more patient. surely not all three ;)
one of the things ( and there are many) that i love about fiber folks is our connections. i was asked to be the transporter of a delightful bag of fiber. amythefibergoddess had sent dyed wool home with acornworks mill to be made into roving. the wool was stunning, bright vibrant hues of blue. diane (acornworks mill) blended them together and brought them to me to return to amy. see what happened? i got the finished product in all it's beauty in my possession.
it sat all evening on the couch taunting me....
so i decided that i should (as a good fiber friend) look at it a bit closer in the light, just for quality control.....
and when it happened to tip out, what was i to do but fondle it, gush over it beauty.....
and tie it nicely back into the bag.
now it's laughing at me...... because it knows i want to take it for a spin! i may need to move it to the garage, out of harms way ;)

Saturday, January 19, 2013

the mitre square

i am having a blast with this blanket! i  must admit, the yarn is challenging. it is very slippery and splitty (technical knitting terms) but it love watching each square emerge.
i finally colored my own graph so that i can tell which color goes where. it seems that i was supremely deficit at seeing a color and translating it to the actual color i'm using. it is so soft and light, but it has started to keep my lap warm as i knit along.
i've started scheming on my next one. i'd like to alter the pattern to construct a full size one for snuggling on the sofa in some of the hand-dyed wool that i made last summer. the batts are great, but very different so it would be easy to change colors on the blocks. i'd have to spin it thicker (not a problem, i've got a several pounds).
but first i've got to get this baby done!

Sunday, January 13, 2013


i love this dang scarf! i really wish i could remember why it sat for ever in a basket undone. maybe it was boredom ( but with this yarn that's hard to imagine) or maybe i just got distracted with 'must finish' projects, or maybe there is no excuse!
we ended the holiday celebrations yesterday, and i took the opportunity to wear it....
it was comfortable and really added just the dash of fun i needed. it was quite the process to block all those steps....
but well worth it! i'm restraining myself from casting on another (or at least trying to:)

Thursday, January 10, 2013

need a new project

i've finished all the mittens. the miss-matched set is dear...
it came out just the way i imagined it. i'll be sure to get a pic of it on the happy birthday girl.
so with the end of the mittens, i had nothing on my needles. i kept looking about at patterns, trying to think of projects that i would need to have done this year, and maybe even a few that needed to be finished. i found my hitchhiker scarf that i started in 2011, dragged it out and took a look. i was almost done so there was no excuse. i started knitting and within a day i was casting off. the funny part was, that as i was finishing it last evening i was waiting at gymnastics. the gal next to me asked about my project and how long it would take to make it. i just sat for a moment, looking at my yarn deciding how best to answer. (i mean really, it is a simple garter stitch scarf.) so i simply explained that it was a simple knit that takes most knitters a short time to finish. the truth? oh yea, i just wasn't going to explain that i was unable to get it done in a timely manner because i have no logical, reasonable answer!
so, there i was this morning with nothing to knit and my newest spinning project whispering and winking at me. on i cast!
i still am flabbergasted that i spun the exact yarn from the illustration. it has a destination so i'll have to stay on course with this. then, the mail arrived with another yarn purchase and i started this....
now i don't usually like to have more than one project going at a time. but..... this is a simple garter stitch baby blanket that will be easy to transport and knit. my niece is expecting her first baby in july and this pattern ( cousins' mitre square baby blanket) just called my name. i chose commercial yarn that will be washable in my favorite colors. gender neutral, but still lovely. the yarn is a bamboo blend that is extremely soft and light weight, perfect for cooler evenings or snuggle time.
so no excuses... just lots of knitting!

Sunday, January 6, 2013

mittens, mittens, mittens

so that holiday knitting that i had done? it seems that i was wrong. i had crafted mittens for my christmas craft exchange. the exchange will be this saturday for my family christmas. it has been a long (since i was a girl) tradition that the ladies 'craft' a gift for each other. decades ago it was a gift for all, now we draw names and as long as the gift item is 'hand-crafted' by someone it's golden. my how times change. so, back to my mitten dilemma. i made the cloisonne mittens for my recipient. all blocked and ready to wrap, i tried it on. too big. way to big. i rationalized that you might want them big to wear over another mitt, or not catch on your rings, or rub against your chapped skin. well, my beloved family squashed all those reasonable reasons and i found myself knitting another pair.
the blue clip is on the original pair, the smaller ones are the ones that i'm gifting. it appears, i will never learn (see last mitten gift ). so i've got a set in my gift stash.
since i was on a mitten roll, i started these.....
i made my niece a beret for her upcoming birthday and had some handspun left over. i just can't toss away handspun, so i cast on for a matching set of mittens knowing that i would need to add in some commercial yarn to complete them.
the colors compliment perfectly and i think having miss-matched mittens is perfect for an eleven-year-old.

Friday, January 4, 2013

back in the habit

i'm finding myself quite busy with all my finished spinning projects. all of a sudden there were bobbins full that needed to be plied, yarn that needed to be washed and more waiting to be spun. it took me awhile to realize that i'm back into my spinning groove. usually after dinner, i sit and spin while the family clears the table and tidies the kitchen. for the last two months, i've been missing that routine. there were sets to make for the holiday ice show, evening commitments that the holiday season brings, and nice weather to still be able to walk the dogs. well that all ended around the 25th. so the wheels ( yes, i'm spinning on both- just not at the same time) have fiber on them.
i just finished spinning this lovely corriedale from 'into the whirled'. i have a pattern that i'm anxious to make and needed a specific yarn. after searching the web, the light bulb lit and i decided to make it myself. (really now, isn't that one of the reasons that i spin my own yarn???) it came out better that i anticipated.
i spun some lovely merino into a very fine single, and to keep the color intact decided to navajo ply. notice my spiffy basket? found this awesome basket maker at a festival and she custom made this to accommodate my bobbins. this was the first chance i've had to use it. so far, i'm extremely pleased.
the bobbin on the left is my single and on the right is the one that i've already plied. i planned on doing a two ply, but soon saw that it was not going to match up color-wise, so i three plied it. love the gently colors of this roving and i'm happy it's turning into such lovely yarn.