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 :).
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!!
Here 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.
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.
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 :).
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 :).
I went to my first Shepard’s Market/Fiber Fair this past Saturday. Lots of nice stuff – think, spinning fibers, yarn, spinning wheels, spindles, weaving looms and various other things with fibery stuff on it :). Sorry my picture turned out a little blurry 😦 I’m not a wonderful photographer like my sister :P. But you can see the tee shirt I bought (gotta love it this time of the year with elections coming up :P), a really cute red mug and matching bag (the bag was a mother’s day gift from the vendor so I didn’t have to pay for it woot woot), and of course you can not go to a Fiber event and not come home without a skein of yarn!! I am not where I can get the names of the vendors I bought from at the moment but will come back and edit this in a while and put their names and web page addys on and give more info on the items I bought :). It was fun, the vendors were wonderful and I am saving up so I can spend more money next year!!
Friday, the day before the market, I was in the mood to spin but not feeling like carrying my big wheel to the park, which I usually do once or twice in the spring. So I carried it outside to my balcony and finally finished that first bobbin I have been working on for quite a while (laziness and lack of time on my part) and started the next bobbin. I am going to try to spin on it every day until I have the 2nd bobbin done and then ply them and have that beautiful alpaca yarn done :). That will become a hat for my daughter, then I will have to decide which of the other beautiful rovings I have that I want to spin, tho the light colored cria I have is calling my name :P. Someday I want to save up and buy a portable wheel so I can more easily go to the park to spin whenever I want and not worry about damaging my bigger wheel in transport.
To the left is the Polypay fleece I was gifted from a friend this spring. Because I was very busy with little ones this summer I did not have time to spin 😦 , so I decided to let The Shepherd’s Mill go ahead and spin it into yarn for me this year instead of just processing it into fiber to spin. I do heavily skirt the fleeces because they do not put coats on them and the fleeces are pretty dirty and loaded with vm (they are raised as meat sheep rather than for their fleeces, tho because the ewes are Polypay they have a softer fleece.) I take off the really ugly stuff and pull out all the vm that I can and send in the fleece to the mill, they wash it (usually twice) and process it. I sent in about 4 lbs of skirted fleece and received 2.55 lbs of yarn (picture on the right) and a little left over roving that I will spin.
I will knit a hat for my friend’s husband and son from their own sheep as a thank you :). I’m sure they will appreciate the extra warmth this winter :). Now to pick a pattern to knit and colors for the yarn :).
Are you ready for some football?
Yep it’s FOOTBALL season again!!! I am excited to see how “The Boys” will do this year. They were pretty decent last year, a controversial call did them in at the end of the year. They have lost their first pre-season game, but it’s just that pre-season :). GO COWBOYS!!!
sock yarn from SpinningStreak
This is some beautiful sock yarn from SpinningStreak ‘s Etsy shop (she’s in England). She has some gorgeous yarns. I saw this yarn and tho the shipping from overseas is not cheap, this yarn was talking to me. I have a friend who recently lost her sister and I wanted to so something special for her and I knew this yarn was it. The comfort shawl I have decided to make is called Ethereal Shawl . It’s very basic and simple but because it’s a light weight yarn on large needles it will look light and airy, and should knit up quickly. I’ll post a picture when I am done. She also sent it in a really lovely organza drawstring bag.
July and August knitting
I have been watching some family little ones this summer and have been very busy and haven’t had a lot of time to knit, but here are some things I did work on this summer. A comfort shawl for a friend who had to have a defibrillator put in in case she has a heart attack, she’s really young for this kinda of thing :(. I don’t add the fringe when I make them, but that is just my preference. I like having something easy to work on, keeps my hands busy and keeps me grounded when I feel overwhelmed or stressed out and the dishcloths are perfect for that. The one on the left is called In-Thirds-knit-cloth by Michelle Crimm . It’s a free pattern from Ravelry, easy and very pretty. I love using the Sugar’n Cream cotton Stripes for this cloth, sooooo pretty. I made another one that I already gave to a friend and so I put the left over skein so you could see the lovely colors she got :). The dish (or face) cloth on the left is the old standby Grandmother’s Favorite dishcloth .
I packaged up and sent off the Polypay fleece my friend gave me earlier this year. Because I still have roving from the last fleece she gave me and I wanted to get a couple of hats for her husband and son out relatively quickly before it gets cold , I opted this year to have them process it into sport weight yarn. Cost me almost double but when I get it back in 5 to 6 weeks it will be ready to dye and knit :). It should be about 3 lbs of yarn. I always err on the side of caution when I skirt the fleeces and skirt it more severely because the sheep are not covered and I left too much ugly stuff in the first time and the roving was still full of stuff and noils because I also did not remove the short lengths from the longer back fiber. I don’t want to ruin nice roving because I didn’t skirt it enough. Her husband and son each will have a hat made from the fiber of their own sheep. Should help to keep them warm on their farm ;).
Alpaca – 5-15
Yes, I did get out to the park yesterday afternoon to spin again, but oops once again I forgot my camera, sigh :(. So I took this picture at my house after getting back, sorry. It was a beautiful day at the park, there was some kind of a birthday party going on, but I didn’t set up to spin in that area. Was a little bit breezy but all in all a beautiful day.
I’m almost done with this spool of singles, so I will be starting my 2nd spool soon in anticipation of plying and having yarn for a nice hat for my dad for his birthday :).
We have had a ton of rain this year (I’m sure California is wishing they had some of it, and to be honest, if I could send some of it down there I would :P). It makes everything green and beautiful, but I would love to have a few more sunny dry days :).
Ok, yesterday was soooo beautiful. I thought it would be April before I could take my spinning wheel to the park to spin. I just couldn’t wait to spin some of that luscious Alpaca that I got back from the mill. And I have to apologize, I forgot in the excitement of getting out to the park, to bring my camera, sigh, so this picture I took after I got home. I’ll go again and remember to take my camera when we have another nice 60’s day, but it looks like it won’t be this warm for another couple of weeks according to the 10 day forecast.
I like my Baynes wheel, it spins nicely, but the thing that drives me crazy is that sometimes the spool will fall off because the post will get a little loose and not hold the spool in place. Gonna have to work on that. I always say that someday when I get rich and good looking (:p) I want one of these custom made hand carved wheels. (Yeah right :P) A girl can dream can’t she :).