Some Spinning

Kettle dyed polypay roving

I have been very lax this year on my knitting and spinning.   As I said before in one of my posts, just very unmotivated this year.   So I said to myself, time to get the show on the road girl and get some things done, a change of attitude is what I need.  So I will begin by making myself do something with my knitting or spinning every day, knowing that eventually I will be back in the swing of things.  I still love knitting and spinning, just not motivated to do them, so I will treat myself like one of my children and make me do it :P.

This  is some left over Polypay roving that I kettle dyed a few years ago.  Thought I would kill two birds with one stone and get it spun (won’t be a lot of yarn, maybe 200 yds of heavy fingering) while I learn to spin properly on my Rick Reeves spinning wheel.  I’m still working on figuring out the tension on the double band drive so…. it is over spinning a little bit, but eventually it will be right.  I did this yesterday and will spin on it every day until it’s done.  I also need to get a pair of socks started for my dad for his birthday, I have a few months before that is here, but considering how long I took with my last pair of socks, LOL, I need to get the show on the road!

Beautiful Roving!!

I belong to a Ravelry group called The Fiber Pusher Podcast .  She is very knowledgeable with natural dyes, fibers, weaving and knitting.  On her group she is having a spinning year and when we post pictures of how our spinning is coming along or just general comments in that thread we become eligible for a give away every month.   April’s prize winner never got in contact with her so she redrew a week ago and I won the new drawing!  It is two 4oz braids of 80% Targee wool/ 10% Viscose Bamboo/ 10% Tussah Silk (there are two pictures of it because it was to long to get in one picture :P.)  It is from BaH Yarns and is so pretty and very soft.  I have not spun Targee wool before so this will be a fun spin as I watch the colors unfold in the yarn I make.  She also has a sheep breed study she is doing and she had some Navajo Churro fiber that she gave away 1 oz to the first 16 people who voiced that they would like to spin some.  That is the little packet of white fluff you see in the picture.  It’s not a soft fiber but will be an interesting spin to know what the different breeds are like to spin and what they are best used for. 🙂

You meet so many wonderful people online.  If you are a knitter, spinner weaver or crocheter please check out Ravelry if you aren’t on there already, there are so many wonderful patterns and podcasts.  It’s a great place to see what others are knitting, crocheting or spinning.  And definitely check out the Fiber Pusher Podcast, she even has a wonderful free ezine (email newsletter/magazine) she does once a month you can sign up for in her group, sooooo much information!!

I am working on the 2nd sock just not fast enough lol.  Hopefully I will post a picture soon :).

Year of Spinning

This year in the Fiber Pusher Podcast on Ravelry we are working on spinning.  This month it’s getting things finished that are on our wheels.  I had finished the first spool of singles last year, and had started the 2nd spool so am now working on finished that 2nd spool.  I’m excited to see this 2nd spool finished and plyed with the 1st spool because I know it will be a beautiful yarn.  My yarn usually ends up being a light sport weight.  You can see the rolags I am spinning from, here.  I’m trying to commit to at least 20 min of spinning a day, but at the very least 3 or 4 times a week.  That way I won’t feel bad if I miss a day or two because of odds and ends unplanned things that happen in life.  Would love it if things never happened unexpectedly however…. :).  I haven’t decided what I want to make from it yet.

I will still be working on the mitts, but I have decided that rather than chance I will fail at the yarn chicken game (made me nervous to see the ball going down faster than I had hoped)  and I really did not want to have to frog two mitts to redo them with another color yarn, so, I am going to insert one of the other colors where the design is so it will be a two tone mitt and better match her 3 color cowl :).  I’ll post a picture when I have passed that design point and you can see it better.

I have also promised that I would finish the socks I am working on for someone for their birthday (next month) and I need to make two hats for two little ones as we are in the throes or a polar express here :).  We were at -21 yesterday (New Years Day and this bitterly cold weather started with the early afternoon on New Years Eve) with wind chills dipping from -30’s to -42 and it was still very cold earlier today, tho now, late afternoon, it’s only -2 with a wind chill of -14.  woo hoo, a warm up :P.  So I should have a very busy next few weeks with spinning and knitting :).

New Fiber and Tools for Knitting and Fingerless Mitts Done!

Au Clair Fingerless

I have finished the Au Clair Fingerless Gauntlets.  I made them mitts instead by only doing 3 cables instead of 7 (which just makes them shorter.)   They were a fun knit, I hope Maddie’s teacher will enjoy them.

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThis is some spinning fiber I bought at the Cedar Rapids Fiber Festival.  The fiber in the left corner is black (not brown as it shows), green and blue and is a BFL and Corriedale cross 64%, Alpaca 27% and Sari Silk waste 9%.  It’s very soft and oh so beautiful and is from Fiber Curio and Sundries, LLC.  The other fiber  in the top right corner I purchased is 100% Rambouille from Mountain Colors.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I did break down and buy some knitting tools that I have been wanting for a quite a while.  The picture on the left is 2 DPN (double pointed needle) holders, which makes it really nice so the stitches don’t fall off the needles while your project is in progress.  I also got a nipper to cut my yarn and a little case to put my stitch markers in and a needle gauge and a sheep progress keeper.  These I purchased on Etsy from Twisted Yarn and Fiber Co.  The picture on the right are some wonderful progress keepers from Yarn Candy Studio.  I bought a row counter progress keeper (very nice for when I’m doing work and knowing what row I’m on is necessary) and I bought  Harry Potter progress keepers and I love those Harry Potter progress keepers, of course I love the Harry Potter movies so maybe that is why :).  The one you can’t see very well has a hologram in it that is a picture of the patronus charm for Harry (stag’s head) and the words expecto patronus.  It’s really very cute, was sad it didn’t show up in the picture very well.

Went to my son’s today to watch him “blow out” his alpacas in prep for the shearers who came to shear the alpaca.  The shearers did all 6 alpaca in one hr.  I will have some pictures to post eventually.

May the 4th Be With You!!

 

May the 4th

I couldn’t resist, love it :).

I bought some knitting accessories for myself (don’t do that very often) and I will get pictures and put up soon.  Been sick with yet another cold and laryngitis again so I haven’t felt like doing much :(. Also as soon as my back is better (yes I threw it out again) I need to skirt the fleece I have and send it off to be processed into yarn.  I’ll talk more about that when it happens 😛

1/2 Done on 2nd Pair of Socks

Bad Day Socks 1/2 done

Altho’ because of time constraints, it’s taking me a little more time to work on these than it should, I have finished the 1st sock of the pair.  I am getting ready to cast on the 2nd sock today. 🙂  I love the color of these they are fun to knit because of the random pops of color.  Even tho I went down a needle size and they are closer to the size I needed, I will either have to go down one more needle size or cast on 4 less stitches next time for a better fit.  It’s all about learning with new projects.  The recipient is very excited and tried on the sock and was so pleased, she can hardly wait for me to finish them :).

I’m also working on 2 lap blankets for two different people for Christmas, I have one close to finished and then I will begin the 2nd.  I have another project I will begin after the socks are done that will also be for Christmas that will be knit while I knit the lap blanket, that particular project I’ll talk about later on after I finish this pair of socks, I’m very excited to begin working on it.  I like having multiple projects that I can work on at the same time, different places I am during the day require different amounts of concentration, giving me the opportunity to have something to do no matter where I am, challenge or no :).

I do have one more project I will need to start sometime sooner than later, the hat for my daughter that I spun the alpaca for.  She needs to sit down with me and pick out a pattern she would like that will work with the yarn I spun up for her. :).  I do have some singles on my wheel that I have not worked on and I really need to finish and ply.  So many things to do and not nearly enough time :P.

Oh and how can we forget about those Dallas Cowboys!!!  They are doing really well so far this year, 5 wins and 1 loss and number 1 at the moment in the East :). WOOT WOOT!!

1st Pair of Socks Done

1st Pair of socks done

Yarn for 2nd Pair of Socks

YEA!!!  My first pair of socks is done.  There were matchy matchy until I got to the toe of the 2nd sock, they were the same length but two of the darker stripes were a bit longer on the second sock so the toes didnt get the dark tip like the other one.  That is ok tho, I’m excited to have them finished :).

A family member put dibs on them  and she was so excited to get them even tho they are to big for her lol.  But they were just my practice pair because I had no one in mind when I made them, just wanted to see what size that needle size would make.  She gave me another skein of sock yarn to make her another pair lol (see picture on the right.)  Going down a needle size this next pair, and will change to a 2×2 rib cuff which I will make 2 inches long instead of one.  This new yarn is dyed by The Lemonade Shop and the color is Bad Day, it’s sparkly and so pretty, I’m really excited to see how the colorway works up :).

My son has purchased 4 alpaca, one grey, one black, one fawn and one mahogany.  They are so pretty, guess I can see a little bit of alpaca fiber in my life to spin this next spring.  I have a light black Polypay fleece I need to skirt and get sent off to the fiber mill (my car has been a bit “me, me, me” lately so the things I  usually do earlier in the year have had to be put off for car repairs, but when I get the brakes fixed I should be able to send it off next month), then the next month I have another alpaca fleece to send off to the fiber mill.  So much fiber, so little time :).

Tour de Fleece 2016 Update

Spinning Rolags for Tour De FleeceHere is a picture of what I’ve accomplished so far on the first spool of singles.  Spinning this rolag is a little different than spinning from roving, it doesn’t move quite as fluidly as I thought it would, and this combination of fiber did NOT want to be spun thin.  After fighting with it and having the singles break on me a couple of times, I decided to spin it a little heavier and it has been behaving since.  The colors are beautiful and I will be spinning this for a shawl.

We have had some really bad storms here in the last couple of weeks, I’m tired of rain and humidity 😛  It is suppose to be in the 90’s this coming week, and I just have to remind myself that I will miss this heat in the winter when it’s 30, 40 and 50 below zero and tons of ice and snow :P.  Tho’ honestly I have been known to miss the piles of snow when it’s 90 outside as well, lol.

Yarn – Alpaca for the Tour de Fleece 2016

Handspun Alpaca 2016

I did finish the Alpaca!!  222 yards at 14 wpi, which looks like a fingerling weight.  It was very fun to spin and will become a hat for my daughter :).  For the Tour de Fleece tho, I can only count half of this because I already had one spool spun, so just the 2nd spool and the plying went toward this year’s Tour de Fleece.

 

Rolags for Tour De Fleece 2016 It’s ok tho,  I’m ready to start my next hand spun which are 4 ozs of these lovely rolags by The Wooly Witch.  I’m excited to see what they spin up to be yarn wise :).

2016 – Tour De Fleece Team Stitch

Alpaca singles Rolags for Tour De Fleece 2016

I decided to join the spinning Tour de Fleece this year.  I am working on the alpaca I have on my wheel (pictured to the left).  I have been working on it for a while so maybe now I will finish it :P.   It requires some spinning every day, I’ll make the time ;).

On the right is a picture of the other two fibers (4 ozs of rolags and 4 ozs of roving) I will spin on after the Alpaca is finished.  This goes on from July 2nd through July 24th.  We will see how much of this I am able to finish before the end :).

I have been working on the 2nd sock for that 1st pair of socks.  I’ll try to post a picture of my progress in the next few days :).