First Real Snow in 2021 and Late Christmas Gift and Fixing that Pattern.

Our first real snow this winter season hit us yesterday. They predicted a trace to 2 inches, we got 2 1/2 inches of snow. Snowing more this evening they are predicting a trace to 2 inches again, it isn’t snow as hard as yesterday so I figure less than 1 inch. But they said a bigger storm is coming on Saturday, yea :/. They said we will be about 10 below zero on Saturday night and might hit 20 below zero (Fahrenheit) with wind chill, yea :/. We are bouncing around between upper 20s to lower teens (above 0) in the day. -20 F = -28.888 C. I’m not good at knowing this stuff, had to look it up :P. Suffice it to say the mid-west USA winter has begun and we will be seeing much lower temps and more snow as it progresses, sigh. Is it Spring yet?

The second picture is the scarf I have started out of my hand spun baby alpaca fiber, and it is now a late Christmas gift, but along with knitting it I am fixing one of the lines on my pattern, Little Lace Cat’s Paw Scarf. I will be uploading the fix in the next week so stay tuned for that, I will mention it on the pattern that it has been updated. The scarf doesn’t look like much right now, lace never does until it’s blocked, but it is a long skinny scarf and tho after blocking it will be a little longer and a little wider, tho not a ton, the lace however will look much better :p.

Hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas and I wish you much peace in the New Year.

CVM/Alpaca Spin, Hat Done and Scarf Started

No excuse, but I have S.A.D. (Seasonal Affective Disorder, very appropriate initials :P) and in the winter I am less inclined to want to do things, so the fact that I have 1 full bobbin of the CVM/alpaca roving (I believe there is only 15% alpaca blended in ) done is a celebration! One more to go lol, then I can ply and have yarn! The CVM breed’s name refers to the Romney rams and Rambouillet ewes which were crossed to create it around 1915. The California Variegated Mutant (or CVM) is a rare sub-type of the Romeldale breed known for its unusual color, and is considered a derivative of the Romeldale. Even blended with probably about 15% alpaca, it’s a beautiful modeled light brown, tho on my screen it looks grey, it is a light brown. It will make a beautiful yarn.

On to the hat, well I finished the red/black hat I was working on but forgot to get a picture of it before I sent the package to the homeless shelter, my bad.

The second picture is the cria (baby alpaca) that I spun. I got it wound into a ball land am ready to knit my Little Lace Cat’s Paw Scarf. I’m going to have to make a correction as I knit and then fix it on my pattern page. It’s just one line I believe in the pattern. But I will notify you all when I get that page updated.

Wishing you all a blessed day!!!

Accountability for WIPs Now FOs, a New Spin and a National Alpaca Farm Day Visit

Ok, accountability time.

Knitting – FOs (finished objects) I finished the last Flax baby sweater I was working on, it’s in the Yarn Bee Soft & Sleek in Coral colorway, size 6 to 12 months. I follow directions on this pattern, but when I add the extra stitches called for when I pick the stitches for the sleeves I add up a couple of extra stitches on the body of the sweater on each side to close holes when picking up the stitches at the bottom of the sleeves and then knit 2 together in the next round when I get to the extra stitches to reduce the stitch count back to where it is suppose to be, works well :). I also finished the charity hat I was working on. Both are pictured above. I will be starting a new flax baby sweater (a mom is due in Nov would really like one :P) and a new charity hat. Will post pictures of the yarn when I get them started.

Spinning – I finished the cria (baby alpaca) spin. I over spun the ply a bit accidentally and a friend is going to post a youtube video about taking some of the extra ply spin out. She’s really cool, she is Fiber Love Diary on Youtube, she has a lot of nice spinning, dying and weaving videos. Anyway, it was over plied because I was spinning at my son’s National Alpaca Farm day and I was sitting in the shade and I couldn’t see the ply well and I over plyed, sigh. Picture of the yarn above, it was 18 wpi (wraps per inch for my non spinning friends), and 3 1/2 ozs and about 330 yds, a nice fingering weight. Was very soft spinning, but to be honest, plying is boring lol. I have already started a new WIP (work in progress), it is a CVM/Alpaca blend – (CVM = California Variegated Mutant, it is a Romney sheep, courser fleece (less soft), from NZ, bred with Rambouillet sheep, finer fleece (soft), and has to do with a mutation coloration that was re-bred and stayed in the line, look it up on line for more information. It is interesting). This is much less soft than Alpaca but I don’t think it will be too course for next to skin wear. I’m not sure how much alpaca was blended in, it seem to be mostly CVM. It also has lanolin (Alpaca does not have lanolin) that was not completely washed out that gives it a slightly tacky feel, but it’s not hard to spin. The picture shows the ball of roving (2 ozs, I have 2 of these for 4 ozs) as a lighter color, it is actually a little darker, tho not much darker, and shows up a little better as spun on the bobbin, it has a mottled look.

Last picture to talk about, on Sunday at their National Alpaca Farm day event (I only went Saturday to spin, so my son in law was kind enough to send me this picture he took :P) a friend of theirs teaches yoga and she had a class in the alpaca pasture. Fun was had by all, the alpaca were as curious as the people doing yoga. Dotty to her mother Summit, “what the heck are those humans doing?” :p.

Hope everyone is enjoying their fall weather, winter isn’t far behind.

Knitting and Spinning Updates and a New Cria!

In the first picture are some of the things I am actively working on, a little girl baby sweater (yes the Flax :)), it’s in the Yarn Bee Soft & Sleek in Coral colorway. The larger item is a garter stitch comfort shawl in Lion Brand Homespun in the Waterfall Cascade colorway. The last item is the hat I will be knitting for my family member out of the lavender hand-spun (wool with a little alpaca blended in) that is showing in the next picture. I haven’t started the hat (Snowtracks Cap by Timothy Peters) yet, but I did get it wound into a ball. I actually enjoy the hand winding process, I find it a mindless and peaceful experience, well except when it is tangled as I wind, then it’s just an experience :P.

The next picture is all the yarn I’ve spun this year, (well except the orange skein it was a fractal spin I did last year, it’s just pretty :P).

The next two pictures are the alpaca cria (baby alpaca) roving I am spinning on my Rick Reeves double drive wheel. The alpaca fiber is butter soft as it goes through my fingers, and oh my it almost spins itself!! This roving was from a cria fleece that my daughter bought me a few years back that I had sent off to a mill in the east to turn into roving and they did a tremendous job!!

The last picture is one of my son’s alpaca, Summit, and her new cria, who was born this last Thursday, isn’t he a cutie, he’s white just like his mom! His dad was a beautiful fawn color from another herd. They have one more cria to be born in the next two weeks and that will make 4 new babies this year.

Finished Fractal Spin!

Finished the 2nd bobbin on Saturday and plied them together yesterday and washed it and set it out to dry. Done today!!! It is 187 yards and 91 grams, I figure maybe a dk weight. I should have been closer to 200 yards and maybe 93 or 95 grams but I didn’t weigh the halves before I started and I had more on one bobbin than the other, so there’s that, sigh, should still be enough for a hat :). It’s much more vibrant on my phone picture so I’m hoping that the muted colors that show to me are just my monitor. Let me know in your comments if they look muted or vibrant to you.

I want to start some cria (baby alpaca) fiber on my Rick Reeves wheel also, I haven’t used it in a while and I need to get back on it and make sure I don’t loose what I gained on spinning on a double drive wheel.

For my knitting, I am working on an orange color baby sweater (I might have already shown the start a month or two ago) and still working on the sock (lol) and a comfort shawl and one of my charity hats. I will post pictures later this week on how far along they all are. There are a couple of bookmarks I want to get started and done too, but they are small and can be done quickly. I don’t like having too many irons in the fire but here I am, sigh.

Hope everyone is enjoying the wind down of summer and thinking about the fall weather. 🙂

Finished the Tour de Fleece

Sorry, once again I can’t resize the pictures :(. The colors are more vibrant in real life, they even looked better than this on my phone, so this (hopefully) is just my computer and you will see them correctly, sigh.

The picture on the left is the 1st bobbin for the 2nd skein of yarn, and I finished it before the end of the Tour de Fleece. The 2nd picture is the roving I will be spinning for the 2nd bobbin and because I have separated it into 3 lengths the colors will be shorter when I spin them and that will make this a fractal spin with the first bobbin having all the colors one after the other and the 2nd bobbin having the same colors repeating 3 times and then plying them together. this is only my 2nd fractal spin, interested in how it will turn out.

The nice thing about the Tour de Fleece is that it has ignited my desire to spin and I will try to keep this going by continuing to keep spinning 20 to 30 min a day or more if the mood strikes me :).

Hope everyone is doing well and enjoying the beautiful weather (hopefully the weather is beautiful where you are, tho I’m sure those of you who are in your winter are impatiently awaiting spring :).)

Tour de Fleece 1st Skein and Next Project

The first picture is the first finished skein of yarn, tho is not showing as colorful as it is with bits of blue, light turquoise and lavender in it. Sorry about that :/. It was a little under-plied but I can make a hat for a family member and it won’t show. It ended up being 213 yds and 93 grams, a nice sport weight.

The 2nd picture is the roving for the next project. It is a beautiful hand dyed merino wool, 3.8 ounces of roving. The dyer let it felt just a little bit during her dying process so I’m having to pull it apart width wise to separate it enough to spin and even doing this, it’s a bit hard to pull out as I spin and my hands are letting me know they do not appreciate it :P. As beautiful as the colors are spinning up, I will be glad when I am done with this one. I may, to make it a bit easier to spin, choose to do this as a fractal spin because I can separate the half of the fiber, for the 2nd bobbin, into 3 long strips which should help it to spin easier. I did separate the full roving into half, length ways already and am using the 1st half for the 1st bobbin. Guess we will see what happens 🙂

We got quite a bit of rain in the last 2 days, and I’m sure the farmers are appreciating it, at least until harvest time. The temps have been pretty nice 70’s and lower 80’s but the humidity is up. Hope everyone is enjoying their summer :).

Think I’m going to go get a milk shake, my favorite is chocolate-cherry :P.

Tour De Fleece and a Mandalorian goody :)

I can not figure out how to make these smaller :(, every time they update this platform it’s harder to use :(.

I am doing a spin-a-long for the Tour De Fleece (take off of the Tour De France race). I am spinning with Fiber Love Diary on youtube. She has a great spinning and dying podcast. The first picture is one of the two batts I made on my blending board with Polypay and some firestar I dyed. I think I put a little too much firestar in LOL, but it’s a learning experience right? I still have to put this 2nd batt on the blending board for one more pass. This was day two, sorry no picture of day 1. I won’t be posting everyday but I will when I get the first bobbin done, then the second and then after plying before I start on another batt or roving :). This is going on for 3 weeks and I’m spinning about 20 min a day, well maybe 30 :P, except we take a break on the days the bicyclists aren’t riding.

The last picture is a gift I got from my son and his spouse. They go to Disney World and Universal Studios every year, well except for last year when absolutely no one went haha, so the year before or maybe it was the year before that, anyway when they went to Universal Studios they brought me back a wand from Harry Potter World, I’m such a fan of the Harry Potter movies! This year because I am such a Mandalorian fan they brought me back these two pins, which are now adorning two of my knitting project bags, what more could a knitter want? They look very awesome and I am loving them!!

Hope everyone is well and enjoying the summer, or at least the air conditioning :P, and the longer days (meaning more sunshine, well except for all the rainy days we’ve had lately)

Finishing Some and Casting on All the Things!

Spring has finally brought back my knitting and spinning mojo!

First my finished spinning project that has been on my wheel for about 10 months? I finished the wool/alpaca singles I was spinning and plyed them. Well you can’t really call it finished because now it will become something haha, I will be knitting that into a hat for a family member who moved to AZ and complained this past winter it was cold HAHAHAHA, I’m laughing because I live in the Midwest which is where she grew up too, Cold My Foot! sigh. I dyed the yarn lavender, and it will become the Snowtracks Cap by Timothy Peters, free download. My yarn is not dk but a light sport weight so I will knit the medium size instead of the small that I usually do for her. Hopefully it will fit :P.

2nd, Knitting, I am working on the Ara Fingerless Mitts, free Ravelry download. One is done except the thumb and I’m at the start of the design on the 2nd one. Should have those done this week, yeah!! They are only 3 1/2 months late :P. I am using left over yarn from the wedding shawl I knit last fall I am using a ChaoGoo size 3 9″ needle and I always have to go down a needle size because I knit a little loosely, the combination continental knitting style seems to do that, but because that yarn is a light fingering I would use a size 2 needle next time if I make them again.

Next I started another hat to donate to the homeless shelter this next fall. I like knitting them, they are a mindless comforting knit when I need to unwind and think about things, or just not think at all, so not only am I doing good I’m also finding comfort in them. I’m using I love this yarn and my new Knitters Pride Ginger Special interchangeable needle set, size 5 needle with a 16″ cord. These needles are so nice to knit with, not as grabby as bamboo but not as slippery as metal. I love these sets!

Next I’m also working on a long term project that I have had on my needles for a couple of years, eventually it will get done and I will probably give it away and then start another, it is just for something to knit when I need some mindless knitting that has pretty colors to pick my spirits up, is just a long skinny diagonal scarf. We all need those mindless knits. I’m using a bamboo size 5 needle 12″ and Yarn Bee, Glowing, in purple multi from Hobby Lobby.

Finally I have started another baby sweater using Hobby Lobby, Yarn Bee, Soft and Sleek, in Neutral Stripe and a Knitters Pride Karbonz size 5 needle 16″ for the neck and ChaoGoo size 5 needle 9″ for the cuffs and KnitPiks Radiant (wooden) needle size 7 16″ for the body and ChaoGoo Bamboo size 7 needle 9″ for the sleeves. After I get past the yoke the body and sleeves are mindless knitting too. There must be a theme here!

I generally do not have so many things going at once I usually find it stressful to have so many things on the back burner, but I just want to knit all the things!!

I hope everyone is enjoying this wonderful Spring, it’s been warm and cooler, warm and cooler, rainy and sunny etc, but it’s not COLD!! The birds are out and singing, lawn mowers are humming, the grass is green and leaves and flowers are budding and the Spring smells are amazing! Gotta love it!!

New Child’s Flax Sweater and Some New Progress Keepers!

Before I start, just wanted to say, I didn’t forget Easter.  I celebrated Easter on the phone (conference call) with some members of my church, it was nice.  I just didn’t get on the computer afterwards.  Hope everyone had a good Easter, even tho we were all physically distancing ourselves.

I did finally get a picture of my Spring Robin :).  He kept his back to me so I didn’t get that beautiful red breast, but there he is :).

I didn’t get around to posting 1/2 way through this new Flax knit but here it is all finished.  Still using Hobby Lobby’s Yarn Bee Soft & Sleek, colorway Violet Stripe.  I think I neglected to say in my previous Flax sweaters my needle sizes etc.  It calls for a worsted/aran yarn and the one I am using is worsted.  I generally have to go down a size needle to get correct gauge because I am a looser knitter, but I went down two sizes on the body and sleeves and one size on the neck and cuffs.  So I used a size #5 on the ribbing and cuffs and a size #6 on the body and sleeves.  I’m sorry I don’t know what the mm sizes are :(, I like the fabric it created much better.  I used a 16 inch circular on the neck and body and 9 inch circular on the sleeves and cuffs.  I do like the way the color blocks on this yarn and pattern :).

I think my next project will be some more of those cute lace bookmarksI made 2 years ago.  They are a free pattern and the link for those is on my linked page.

I did some spinning on my balcony today, since it was about 60F.  It was nice to sit outside and enjoy a peaceful spin :).  I’m working on the second bobbin for the white wool/alpaca I am spinning.  I am having to have someone to make new bobbins for my Rick Reeves wheel, the other ones I had made didn’t fit and they didn’t have the metal piece in the middle to protect them while I spun.  I found someone who specifically makes them for this wheel.  Hopefully I can order them next month.

And as you can see, I bought some more progress keepers from CharmingMinis , they are sooooo cute, her artistry with polymer clay is amazing!! She always sneaks in a extra gift.

Hope everyone is staying safe and that we get back to normal soon, at least it’s getting warm!