2nd Skein of SW Merino for the Spin-a-long

2nd Skein of teal sw merino for spinalongWell I finished the 2nd skein for the scarf I’m going to make for my friend. I think I know what pattern I want to use, but I’m going to search a bit more to make sure.   It was 140 yds (57g) so including the 1st skein, this should give me 342 yds.  Plenty of yarn for a longer scarf.

She wanted the color teal and the 2nd dye bath color came out a little lighter than the 1st skein, as you can see in the picture (the 1st skein I already wound into a ball.)  So what I plan on doing is starting with the lighter skein on the ends, then blending it with the darker skein so it looks more like a color gradient on the ends.  We will see if what I have planned turns out as I picture it when I am done :P.

Going to take advantage of the beautiful weather we are having (a month late).  Think I will spin on my balcony again today :), because I know shortly the hotter, muggier, full of biting bugs weather will be here.

Oh, the SW in the title is short for Super Wash, means the fiber was treated so it shouldn’t felt or shrink when washed.  Even so, I caution people to treat it a little more carefully than not, ie: hand wash, lay flat to dry (which also allows you to block it for prettier results :).)

Shawl Update

 

 

The Changing Staircases shawl doesn’t look like much yet, but then it’s not blocked and you can’t really see all the points along the right edge (as you are looking at it.)  They will be much more defined and the lace sections will be more open after blocking.  Blocking should also make the shawl a bit larger.  I don’t think I’m quite 2/3’s done, but I’m making progress.  This is an easy pattern and it’s an enjoyable knit.   I almost forgot, the 2nd picture is a progress keeper I won on Raverly last year or the year before, the creator has a shop on Etsy called the Victorian Studio Shop and she has lots of wonderful stitch markers and progress keepers, her polymer clay crafting is amazing.  This is a Chocolate Frog (Harry Potter reference) and is helping me keep track of my rows :).  Yeah, he’s not real chocolate, or he wouldn’t be there anymore helping me keep track of my rows :P.

I decided I might need a little more yarn for the scarf I’m making for my friend, so I am spinning about 60 more grams of roving.   I was worried about running out of yarn and having a scarf that was shorter than I wanted.  Because I probably will not have a perfect match when I dye it to match the skein I have already spun, I didn’t start the scarf yet so I can put the different shade on the ends and blend it in as I knit.  Since it’s a dark teal I’m hoping the shades won’t be terribly different, but plans in my head don’t always translate out the same when I do them, however, it’s always worth a try :).  Trying is how we learn ;).

It’s a beautiful day, think I will go outside on my balcony and spin for a bit. 🙂

Spinning Experiment and It’s Yarn!

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I gave my Kromski Polanaise spinning wheel a work out this week and got a skein of yarn done!  I have always struggled with left over singles on a bobbin when I’m done plying, so I thought (after I started of course and was on my 2nd bobbin) that I was going to weigh the 3rd empty bobbin I had to see how much the bobbins weighed.  Then I would weigh each of the singles when I thought I had them about half full (always hard for me to judge) and see if I could get close to not having much left on one of the bobbins after plying the two singles together.  As you can see the first bobbin weighed 101 grams and the 2nd bobbin was 93 grams, so I took 8 more grams of the fiber and added it to the 2nd bobbin.  They both weighed 101 grams.  The empty bobbin for plying was 53 grams.

So I plied the two singles and ended up with 139 grams, and I thought, um, how is that, oh yeah the weight of the 2nd bobbin.  I weighed the now empty 2nd bobbin, it was 57 grams, ugh didn’t take into consideration that the bobbins might not weigh the same.  So all in all the 1st and 2nd bobbins weighed 57 grams each and the 3rd bobbin that I used to ply them with was 53 grams.  I ended up with 90 grams (202 yds) of plied yarn after it was washed.  It looks like a light sport weight yarn.  I ended up with only 1 yd and 6 inches of left over singles on one of the bobbins, so my experiment was successful.  I know the differences between the amount of the singles on each bobbin will always be there because of the inherent inconsistent spinning for hand spun yarn, but I’m pleased over all with how it worked out and how to cut down on left over singles on a bobbin. 🙂

Off to find the perfect pattern for a scarf for my friend, and then on to my next spinning project :).

Hope everyone is having a great Spring.  We have had rain for most of our days throughout this Spring.  I dream of sunshiny days.  I am not a rain person, one reason I don’t live in the northwest coastal areas, I need the sunshine!  The few days we have had that were dry, sunny and warm enough to be outside on the balcony without high winds, had me outside on my balcony spinning on my spinning wheel , it’s a peaceful thing to do.  Hope you find a peaceful thing to do too. 🙂

Spinning on the Kromski Polonaise and a New Project.

 

With the help of the Kromski Raverly group and a local friend, I was able to get the Polonaise configured to be a scotch tension drive, thankfully it comes with both options :).  The pictures do not do it justice, it is a dark mahogany color but looks like a walnut color in the pictures.  It is portrayed a little better in the picture of the singles I am spinning tho’ it still does not show the dark mahogany color as it is, it is really beautiful.  It spins like a dream and I am enjoying spinning on it immensely.  The fiber is some super wash merino that I had dyed some time back when I spun a skein for a friend.  I am spinning this skein to make a scarf or cowl (we need those here in the winter :P) for Marge’s sister (also a friend).  Something for her to think about her sister when she wears it.

Changing Staircases  I also cast on a new project.  Was going to make this last year for Christmas for a family member but I fell and broke my hand so that didn’t happen.  Not taking any chances this year, if I procrastinate, “Murphy” will come to visit again and he is not allowed in my home :P.  This is the Changing Staircases shawl by Trysten Molina of Dragon Hoard Designs.  I am using Stroll Tweed Sock Labs yarn by Knit Picks in the Teal Tweed colorway.  It’s really pretty and has a generous 462 yards.  Because I am a loose knitter I am using a size 4 instead of a size 5 circular needle.  Tho’ it looks difficult, this pattern is very easy and easily memorized :).  Not sure if you can see it very clearly but I am using a beautiful bronze heart progress keeper made by Stephanie of the Knitting Samurai podcast, from her Adore Knits Etsy shop.

I am loving Spring but could do without all the rain, but at least it’s not snow :P.

 

Project Done!

 

My project was my Little Lace Cat’s Paw Scarf design with my hand spun yarn.  I’ve knit this little scarf several times and still enjoy it.  The colors on the scarf are blown out, it really is a medium teal color instead of the lighter color that shows.

I am working on spinning on my Rick Reeves spinning wheel, but the tension is a bit finicky (it’s a double band drive tensioned wheel and I’m use to scotch tension).  I won’t give up, I’ll get it eventually, it’s the only wheel I have at the moment that does not need some repairs, so learn on it I must :P.  I’ve got quite a bit of practice fiber, so I will keep working on it and save my nice fiber for after I have the learning curve down :).

Our weather has gotten much better, rain instead of snow and we have been in the 30’s, 40’s, and today and tomorrow lower 50’s!!  WOOT Spring is almost here, we will be back in the 30’s and 40’s after today.  I say almost because we can still get snow through April.  But I will be keeping an eye open now for the Robins, who are my true signal that Spring is finally here :).  I love Spring!

More Snow and Basia Hat Finished

More Snow Feb 2019  We got 2 inches of snow on Sunday morning/afternoon, and from yesterday evening until this morning when I took the picture we got a little over 3 more inches of snow.  So the ground is once more white with snow, and more snow is on the way on Thursday or Friday, sigh.  I just keep saying Spring is right around the corner, Spring is right around the corner, Spring is right around the corner…..

Jennettes Basia hat1

I finished the Basia hat, and gave it to the intended recipient.  She was very pleased.  I knit this on size 4, 16 inch circular needle for the ribbing and changing to size 6, 16 inch circular needles and (at the end when it got to small around for the 16 inch needles) size 6 double pointed needles for the crown,  instead of going up a needle size for the slighter heavier wt yarn, causing it to be a bit denser and heavier.  I used the sport/DK wt Polypay, which dyed up a lighter brown, and a dark brown alpaca, which I hand spun as heavy fingering wt.  These two yarns used together was a heavier weight close to, but maybe a little heavier than the worsted wt called for and oh my it will be so warm.  I had promised my family member that I would hand spin alpaca for her hat, but since the Basia hat she chose calls for worsted wt and I truly did not want to want to have to do the math for the lighter wt yarn (I’m not a math person :P), I added the Sport/DK wt wool I had on hand which made it a little heavier than a worsted wt.  She is happy with the hat, and with the sub zero weather we have been having I’m sure it will be a welcome addition to her winter wear :).  I think you can see better the lighter and darker browns together and how they play well with each other :).  I forgot to get a picture before she left, she was kind enough to send me one for my blog ;).

It’s Finally Spun and is Yarn!!!

Finished rolag skein Oh my gosh this was on my wheel for a little over a year!  But—it’s finished!!  The problem besides procrastination and a broken hand was the Baynes spinning wheel (no longer in production,  I included a link so you can see what it looks like, mine looks like the one on the left.)  The screw that holds one of the posts on the Mother of All (spinning term for part of the wheel), that helps hold the spool holder on, won’t tighten down and comes loose and the spool holder with the spool of singles (or plied yarn) occasionally falls off.  Ugh, very annoying.  So I will need to get some wood putty and fill in the screw hole and then screw the screw back in so it will tighten up properly (tho honestly for a second when I was spinning, I considered gluing it down :P).  Another problem is that this wheel will  not hold 4 ozs of spun yarn so I was only able to spin 3.25 oz, and I had a very full bobbin of plied yarn.  Once the bobbin gets full on this wheel it is hard for it to take the yarn in anymore, so I have to watch how full the bobbin is.  I finished with 312 yards at 16 wpi (wraps per inch – for my non spinning friends – tells me how thick or thin the yarn ended up being – a light sport weight in this example (that is what my chart says), however I have seen charts that call 16 wpi a fingering – tho if it is, it’s a heavy fingering wt.)  Any spinners reading that would like to weigh in on that and if there is a definitive chart?

I will go back to working on the practice roving I have on the Rick Reeves wheel now, so I can figure out the double band drive and how to adjust it to find my sweet spot for spinning, at least I know the spool won’t fall off that one :P.

Baby 2X2 Hats

I have a friend who had a baby girl about 2 months ago so I decided now that my hand was better to make her a simple baby hat (my hand still tires easily and gets nerve pain when I over do, but it’s slowly getting better.) I certainly can’t leave her 3 year old brother without a hat, so after finishing the 2X2 rib hat from 5 Easy Pieces – Knit Newborn Hats (Circular), (free pattern on Ravelry) for her daughter, I started one for her son.  I choose the 2X2 rib because it’s, easy (to knit and on my hand) and soft and squishy.  I used a size 6 for the newborn size (the pattern called for a size 7, I knit loosely so I  usually go down a needle size to get gauge)  and used the size 7 for the 3 year old’s hat and added 12 stitches.  I will also add length so it will cover his ears :).  **There use to be a way to magnify the pictures on Word Press but I can’t find it anymore, so even tho you can’t see the yarn very well, it’s Yarn Bee (from Hobby Lobby) Soft and Sleek, the pink is pink stripe and the blue is Denim Blues.  It is very soft stuff and knits nicely.  I believe Hobby Lobby is having a yarn sale in the store this week (Monday Dec 24th – Saturday Dec 29 2018) for 30% off.  Incentive to buy some more :P.

I am still working on the spinning.  I finished that rolag and weighed the bobbins with the singles and first one is a little heavier so I decided to get another of the rolags to spin (that will leave 3 left) and put 2/3 of the rolag on the lighter bobbin and the rest on the other bobbin, hopefully that will balance it out.  We will see.

Tomorrow will be baking day, rolls for Christmas dinner on Tuesday :).

**Update:  I discovered that if you choose the pictures side by side choice that you can click on them on the blog and they will enlarge in a separate window, however if you chose the single pictures they will not.  So there you go.

Some New Housemates and Some Spinning

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Meet (yellow and green) Princess Peach, and (teal on the top and blue on the bottom and some white) Yoshi.  My son and his spouse weren’t having enough time for these love birds because of their alpacas and shows to sell their alpaca yarn, etc.  So I inherited them.  Unfortunately they are both females so they have to have separate cages because, tho they like each other, it’s from afar, lol.  I didn’t realize just how noisy and loud love birds can be, they make a call similar to the kookaburra, :P.  They also have quiet noises as well.  You can’t see the color well on the teal/blue love bird, but she is beautiful.  They are not friendly so I have to love them from afar as well :P.  They are very intelligent as most parrots are, Miss Peach figured out how to get out of her cage and I had to secure all the doors on her cage, she is naughty :P.

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Ok, re-posting the finished spool of singles and the progress on the 2nd spool and showing the rolag with it.  I have four more rolags not counting the one I draped across the wheel, however I have the 1st spool about 1/2 way full and tho I can get more on it, if I have 2,  more than 1/2 full spools, I worry that it will be overfull after plying, and my  Baynes wheel doesn’t do plying well once that happens.  So I might have to just spin what is left over, after filling this 2nd spool 1/2 way, and ply the left over singles from a center pull ball and use it if I need it for the scarf that I am planning on making with this yarn. I’m hoping to have this done tomorrow evening or Monday sometime, been a long time coming with this skein :P.  Then I can concentrate on continuing learning to spin on the Rick Reeves double drive wheel ;).

One More Contraption to Wear on the Road to Recovery.

splint/brace Well, had my hand Dr appt. today and the cast is off!  I will now be wearing this for at least the next 4 weeks.  Plus starting Thursday I will be having physical therapy appts, where I will find out what my new physical therapist determines will be the duration of my torture, I mean therapy sessions.  The dr was nice enough to prescribe me pain meds for the upcoming therapy sessions after he bent my little finger to see it’s flexibility after being in the cast for 6 weeks and my eyes almost bugged out of my head, and I said I don’t think I want physical therapy.  He then informed me that if I didn’t I would lose a lot of mobility in my fingers, and to be honest at that point I would have been fine with that :P.   Can you tell I am not looking forward to these?  I’m accepting volunteers to take my place for those :P.

I was hoping I would be knitting again, however I did not anticipate having a splint/brace on for at least another month, sigh.  Maybe time to see if I can figure out the throwing knitting style or a variation there of (I normally knit the combined continental knitting style, also referred to as picking, so I use my left hand for my knitting tension like a crocheter does and my right hand does the actual knitting.)  Time to get serious to see if I can spin with my left hand in this contraption.  At least, I can take it off to wash my hair :), and for those dang physical therapy sessions and whatever home exercises they make me do.  Otherwise it is to be in this thing, tho honestly, my hand is grateful for the support the splint/brace gives.  Aspirin at this point is my friend :).

 

Just one more set, honest :P   I couldn’t resist this one more stitch marker set from Adore Knits , it was on sale and so darn cute! These are tiny for sock knitting, which works well for me because I have to use size 0 to get gauge for my socks.