Showing posts with label spinning. Show all posts
Showing posts with label spinning. Show all posts

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Not quite right

Remember the teal and gray baby sweater from my last post? In case you don't, here's a pic.
Nice, right? Let's take a closer look shall we....
Notice anything? I'm not talking about the difference in color between the blue's. I'm talking about the shoulder.

Guess who forgot to sew the shoulder seam before picking up stitches for the hood? Yup, this chick right here.

I just haven't had the energy to rip it out and fix it. Luckily I have a few more months before the boys will be able to fit them. I started the second one, but as usual, I ran out of yarn. I ended up starting a new project in the meantime, in between time.

I have a bunch of pre fold diapers, I mean a BUNCH! I failed to realize before putting a gaggle of them on my registry, that you need a wool cover to go over them. You also have to lanolize the cover which is a whole 'nother story which I won't go into just yet.

The great part about knitting soakers is that you don't need much yardage so I can use up some of the handspun stash. Only downside is most of my handspun is in feminine colors so it was really hard finding appropriate yarn.

I finally settled on yarn I spun from my previous Spunky Club subscription ( which I miss dearly). I'm almost done, just have to add the ribbing to the legholes.

Even though I'm getting some knitting done, I'm still pining for my other crafts. I can't wait to break out the wheel and sewing machine. Hopefully they'll make an appearance soon.

Sunday, July 04, 2010

glutton for punishment

So I decided to unofficially join Le Tour de Fleece. I know, I know I hate joining stuff but what the hay. You can find more information on Le Tour here but its basically like spinning wool all the days that Le Tour de France cyclist spin. I say unofficially because I haven't joined a group yet. I'm spinning just to use up the stash and get back on track.

I got a head start by spinning on my spindle this past week. It felt good to be back in my element. I hadn't spun for a couple of months and it was nice to get back in the groove of things.

I wanted too spin something glitzy so I went stash diving to find something to fit the bill. I think i bought this fiber at last years Webs tent sale but it is an 8 ounce super batt from Applegate Country Fibers. The contents are wool, mohair, angora and glitz.

My process is to grab a chunk, fan it out a bit, roll it into a rolag, spin it kinda semiwoolen and immediately andean ply the singles. So far I have three mini skeins and i'm working on the fourth.

I have no particular plans for what to spin next. I'll be dusting off my wheel (literally) and putting it to work for the next couple of weeks. Hope you all have a wonderful Independence Day. I'm about to stuff my face with some burgers and dogs....and maybe hop in the sprinklers with my son :-)

Tuesday, December 08, 2009


I made a pretty yarn the other day. It's so pretty that it's PURTY. I loves it so much and I have no idea why I'm talking in this manner but I likes it.

The fiber was from my monthly Spunky fix. I was drawn to spin this simply by the colors alone. You may not be able to get the full effect on your monitor and I'm horrible at classifying colors but trust me, the varying hues of blue, brown and green are a-ma-zing.

I started spinning this during the end of summer. When the weathers nice, my spinning buddy Sahara and I like to take out wheels out into the wilds of Harlem. We meet at a local park and just chill and spin. I like to tote my hitchhiker to the park on those days so thats where the fiber started its journey. i took long breaks in between singles but I eventually finished this yarn last week.

I broke the roving into three (somewhat) equal lengths and spun it that way. I don't do many three ply yarns so this was great practice. Especially after all that I learned at SOAR. Speaking of SOAR, I'm going to attempt to give the specs on this yarn as its done in Spin Off (have you seen their latest issue? All I can say is WOW.)

Fiber: 4 ounces of Corriedale - April '09 Spunky Club (Soul Windows)
Preparation: Combed Top
Wheel: Merlin Tree Hitchhiker (singles) / Louet Victoria (plying)
Drafting method: Forward Short Draw
Wheel System: Scotch Tension (both)
Singles ratio: 7:1
Singles direction spun: S
Singles wraps per inch: 30
Plied ratio: 6:1
Plied direction spun: Z
Plied twist per inch: 4
Plied wraps per inch: 12
Total Yardage: 120
Yards per pound: 494.85
Yarn classification: Sport Weight

That was fun wasn't it? I should try this blogging thing more often dontcha think? I'm actually going to gift this yarn to someone. She reaads my blog so it won't be that much of a surprise. Hopefully she'll be able to make something really cool out of it! Til next time kiddies.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

It took a trip to Oregon to get me out of hibernation

SOAR 2009 book & cloth
If you haven't guessed, I recently went to spinners heaven, also know as SOAR. For those non fiber heads out there, the acronym stands for Spin Off Autumn Retreat and I was one of the lucky few who received a scholarship (YAY)! It was absolutely surreal but I will try to put into words all that I experienced.

First of all, I screamed and cried when I found out I got the scholarship. Then I freaked out into a bunch of "ohmygodohmygodohmygod"s once I found out who I was rooming with. I had the pleasure of spending the week with cotton spinning diva Stephenie Gaustad. Sadly I didn't get any pictures of her but I felt so honored to be in her presence and yes she did the eyebrow thing a lot. She is a wealth of knowledge and shared her spinning treasures freely. She is just a genuine person that I grew very attached to. I miss our morning chats over a nice cuppa tea already. Between her and Phreadde, I think I've got this cotton spinning thing licked for sure.
Takli & assorted cotton

I began the week with a three day workshop with Judith MacKenzie Mccuin. Yeah, I know. I'll let that sink in for a minute. The topic was spinning for socks but we got that and so much more. I won't get into everything right now because I just don't have the time but I will share one tidbit. During the week I would run into random SOARers and they would ask "Whats one thing you learned?" My answer was usually this: I learned that functional yarn does not have to be pretty. That means that if I want to spin yarn for a light lofty sweater or a durable sock it does not have to look like mill spun it. For some reason this really changed my way of thinking. Like I feel a load has been lifted.

On Wednesday, I sat down to lunch and guess who was seated a couple of chairs down from me.....Evelyn (Swallowtail Shawl) Clarke! I didn't warn you guys that I would be dropping names like dimes but its so much fun. I couldn't think of anything cool or witty to say when I first recognized her so I just stayed quiet. She did seem quite lovely though.

There was an impromptu spinning contest and I was unwillingly entered into the contest by one of my pushy retreatmates that wouldn't take no for an answer. I came in last but thats OK because I keep telling myself that I had the prettiest yarn of them all.

I may seem all over the place in this post but its like information overload. You know what I mean? Anyway, I got to hang out with another scholarship recipient Erin. She's my new BFF. She's so giving and creative and I'm so glad that I met her. We had a swilling good time! I had to travel all the way to Oregon to meet Jimbobspins too who lives all the way in Brooklyn (go figure). Hopefully I'll be able to stalk meet up with him at a spinning meetup.

I took four retreat classes on Friday and Saturday. I got to drum card luxury fiber with Abby (I'd like to think that we're BFF"s in my head), mix colors with Deb (I also like to think that we're all on a first name basis like that), dye squishy fiber with Amy (I really wish that I could've had one of my braids dyed pink) and spin long draw with Maggie (What a delight, she even offered us a popcorn glove).

Like a dummy, I didn't whip out my camera as often as I should, but here's the loot that I scored at the market. I got two spindles. The square one is from Spindlewood and its a square red palm whorl with an ebony shaft. My other spindle is a Tom Forrester and it spins like a dream.

Eight ounces of polworth fiber from Rovings in the apple colorway (couldn't.resist.)
Rovings fiber

Two ounces of a polworth/silk blend from A Verb for Keeping Warm
A Verb for Keeping Warm

Two ounces of a baby alpaca/cashmere blend from The Fold

Four ounces of Optim from Chameleon Colorworks
Chameleon Colorworks

Four ounces of Targhee in the Golden olive colorway from Tactile (Hi Maia!)
Tactile Fiber

Skein of lightweight STR in the Vine Maple colorway
socks that rock

I also purchased some of the SOAR fiber who's proceeds benefit the Susan G. Komen for the Cure and SOAR scholarship fund. It is eight ounces of a BBFL and Tussah Silk mix from Ashalnd Bay.
SOAR fiber

Once I get my projects from class organized I'll share them in pieces on this blog. My computer is on the fritz right now so I've been using my fiance's macbook which is not as easy for me to navigate. When I get my own laptop I'll be able to post a lot more. I'm sure I'm leaving tons of stuff out but I don't want this post to get too long. I'll catch you guys on the flip side.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

A Gallery of Yarns

Here's some of the yarn I've spun in the past month.

Fiber: Merino
Colorway: N/A
Purchased: online somewhere
Ply: 2
Weight: .92 ounces
Yardage: 50 yards
WPI: 12 - Light worsted
Spun on: My Spinning Bunny spindle

Fiber: Wool/Mohair
Colorway: Carnival - hand dyed by me using easter egg dyes
Purchased: Sheep Shed Studio
Ply: 2
Weight: 1.62 ounces
Yardage: 65.44 yards
WPI: 11 - Worsted weight
Spun on: Louet Victoria Wheel

Fiber:Naturally Dyed BFL
Colorway: Dogwood
Purchased: Tactile Fiber Arts via Rhinebeck '08
Ply: 2
Weight: 2.12 ounces
Yardage: 68.33 yards
WPI: 13 - worsted weight
Spun on: Merlin Tree Hitchhiker Wheel

Fiber: Corriedale
Colorway: Green
Purchased: A long time ago on Ebay
Ply: 1
Weight: 1.30 ounces
Yardage: 60 yards
WPI: 15 - Sport weight
Spun on: Louet Victoria Wheel

Fiber: Merino Wool
Colorway: Shades of green (base color dyed by me)
Purchased: Variety of colors in one ounce pieces purchased on Ebay
Ply: 3 - Navajo plied
Weight: 1.84 ounces
Yardage: 48.3 yards
WPI: 8 - Bulky
Spun on: Louet Victoria Wheel

Fiber: Shetland Wool
Colorway: Selfish
Purchased: Spunky Fiber Club
Ply: 2
Weight: 3.96
Yardage: 123.5 yards
WPI: 11 - Heavy worsted weight
Spun on: Merlin Tree Hitchiker Wheel

Fiber: Merino
Colorway: Say a Little Prayer
Purchased: Crown Mountain Farms - Sock Hop
Ply: 2
Weight: 4.30 ounces
Yardage: 131.04 yards
WPI: 11 - worsted weight
Spun on: Merlin Tree Hitchhiker Wheel

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Can I change my name.... Spinderella? It's only fitting since I love to spin and I'm marrying a DJ.

This is going to be a really quick post because I'm exhausted. We're in the thick of our busy season at my day job and nights of not getting to bed on time are starting to catch up with me. I've been making yarn more than I've been making FO's but I do have one to show off. I really needed a pair of mittens. I was successful at hatching a plan to have someone else can knit them for me because I'm way too indecisive when it comes to making things for myself. Only problem is that I wanted mittens NOW. So I had to cast on for something quick and simple.
Even though I only took a picture of one of them, I assure you that there is a mate. I used some angora yarn that was gifted to me by my cousin. Deets are on ravelry.

In my last post (last year), I stated that I wanted to spin up the rest of my spunky club stash from 2007 before I joined the club this year. Well I'll have you guys know that I finished before Christmas. Here are the two I had left:
Colorway: Aspen
Weight: 1.75 ounces
Yardage: Approx 134 yards
WPI: 20 - laceweight
Spun: short forward draw, navajo plied

The last one I spun using the fractal stripe method. I split the roving straight down the middle then predrafted one hole strip. I then broke the other strip up by color to keep the lights and darks seperate. I spun one bobbin of all the blues then all the pinks. I spun the second bobbin as the colors lay in the long strip then plied the two together.

I really like how it came out. I'm thinking of knitting a nice chunky hat out of it (or mittens).Colorway: Celebration
Weight: 3.375 ounces
Yardage: Approx 108 yards
WPI: 10 - Heavy Worsted
Spun: short forward draw

Lastly, I can finally say that I've tried a crosspatch creation batt....and I liked it! I picked one up at Rhinebeck just so I could see what all the hubbub was. I was having a not so good day and needed to relieve some stress. I wanted to spin something without thinking about it, without having to worry if it was even or smooth. So I pick this batt up and just started spinning all willy nilly and this is what I ended up with.
It's lumpy and bumpy and I love it.

Weight:2.875 ounces
Yardage: Approx 61 yards
WPI: 8 - Bulky
Spun: Long backward draw- point of twist

Thats about it. I'm still working on my sweater project, I've got about 5 skeins spun and I need about 6 more. I've also been working on stuff to put up in my shop. Speaking of shop, I will be posting to my Etsy Team's Blog this weekend so take a gander when you get a chance. There are also some great tutorials on there too. By the way, Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 04, 2008

I'm Focused Man

I've been a busy little bee (or sheep) since my last post. I've been so focused on spinning lately its crazy. My wheels and I have become best friends. I wish I had another but I doubt my tiny apartment can hold them all. Too bad I'm not willing to give up one of lovelies. I have lots of handspun yumminess to show so moving right along.....

Let me briefly get the knitting FO's out of the way first. First off is a hat I finished a while ago for my future hubby. Funny thing is that I casted on originally for the little one in mind but I realized about an inch in that it was going to be way too big. I asked the hubby if he minded the color and he said it was cool. I forced asked him nicely to pick a pattern out of my default Japanese knitting book because he's way too picky and I wanted to make sure that he would actually wear the thing. He loves it and its coming in rather handy right about now.
Yarn: Vanna's Choice
Pattern: #032 from Knitting Pattern 300 ISBN:978-4-529-04172-0

Next FO is a special project I made for my Nana. She's the matriarch of our family and she turned 90 years old on the 22nd so you know I had to make her something extra special. Since I was on a budget, I decided to knit a spectacular pattern with economy yarn. Her favorite color's pink so I went with the Hemlock Ring Blanket in Caron One Pound. The yarn doesn't block well but I already knew that before I started.
We all got together and threw her a surprise birthday party. Of course she cussed us all out for not telling her about it (gotta love those southern women) but you could tell she was eating it all up. Here's a picture of her all decked out. Can you imagine experiencing Jim Crow and a black president all in one lifetime? I thank God every day for having her in my life.
On to my current obsession, yarn. I was a member of the Spunky's Fiber Club last year but I canceled when I started to get a little backlogged. Well she's opening the club back up in January (you guys better leave me a spot, I know how you fiberhaulics are!) and I am so psyched. Only problem is that I still have stuff from 2007. So to make me feel better, I'm trying to spin it all up before I join again. So far I have two finished and I'm working on another.

This is Tulips from her May 2007 offering. Its 100% BFL and was a joy to spin. I tried to spin it a little thicker than I normally would. I ended up with almost 3 ounces and about 137 yards at 12 WPI which is about sport weight.

I then tried something different by spinning up a long wool which I don't have a lot of experience with.
This is Harvest Haze which is 100% Lincoln wool. I spun this from the fold to try and wrangle those long fibers. It is rather scrathy but I picture knitting this into a double knit hat with something soft and luxurious on the underside.

Right now I'm working on the the Aspen fiber from the September 2007 installment. Its a merino tencel mix which is really slippery and shiny. I'm also spinning this from the fold but I'm spinning as thin as I can so I can get a great lace weight in the end. I'm thinking of navajo plying it to gain a little thickness in the end.

Once I'm done with this, I only have the July 2007 fiber which is a colorfully dyed Shetland called Celebration. Then more fiber for me!

This post is getting a bit long so I'll try to wrap it up. Thats what I get for staying away so long. I already dipped into my Rhinebeck haul. I spun up the sock wool that I snagged at Little Barn. I had two ounces of both blue and green which equated to two skeins of tw- ply loveliness.

I wanted to share my sheep to shawl project that I'm working on but I don't think I have time. I'll do it briefly:
Step One: Scoured Romney Fiber from RH Lindsay.

Step Two: Hand carded into rolags. (dog brushes really help with picking the wool)

Step Three: Spun long draw on my hitchiker. (Dave is working on a double treadle hitchhiker yay!)

Step Four: Plied and felt blocked for a nice fluffy yarn. (this skein is about 2 ounces and 83 yards at worsted weight)
I just found the perfect project for this project yesterday. I picked up this wonderful British magazine at B & N and all I can say is I am in luv! Its called Yarn Forward and it is a great magazine. I would get a subscription if I could. Anyway, I couldn't find any pictures of the pattern I want to make so here's one straight from the mag.
Its a one piece cable yoked sweater that I can't wait to knit. So far, I've processed about 3 and a half skein so I have a bunch more to go. I'll keep you posted. That's about it, I'm off to read my fifty-eleven blogs in my reader. Be breezy.

Saturday, October 04, 2008

T minus 14 days and counting.....

Can you tell how excited I am about Rhinebeck? I thought the thrill might be gone being that this is my third year in a row attending but I've still got those first time jitters. My budget is really low this year, mainly because I'm going more to socialize than to burn a hole in my pocket. I should be wearing a green sweater (if I can ever finish seaming it up, but that's another story) so if you see me, please say hi.

This should be a short post. I just have a small knitting & spinning FO for your viewing pleasure. Oh, speaking of Rhinebeck (I know, I'm all over the place) I got these cute shoes at DSW the other day. My SO said that they look "old lady"ish but I don't care, I love them anyway. They remind me of the indestructable Buster Brown shoes that my Mom used to make me wear back in the day. I got them a half size larger than I normally would to accomodate for my hand knit socks. If they only had them in green....

OK, where was I...thats right, FO's. Remember when I posted about the fugly scarf I was working on? Its a basic sheep to shawl item. I scoured the wool, dyed the wool, carded the wool, spun the wool and now knit the wool. It was intended to be a drop stitch scarf but I ran out of yarn so it magically morphed into a cowl. I think I may like it better this way. It's still a bit scratchy but I plan on giving it a nice long soak in conditioner or wool wash or something to soften it up a bit.

I also just finished the fiber I was spinning in my previous post. The colors are still a bit muddled but not as badly as I originally thought. I'm still very pleased with the results.
Fiber Source: Ashland Bay purchased at the Yarn Tree
Weight: 3.75 ounces
WPI: 14, Sport Weight yarn
Length: 217 yards

I don't have any projects planned for this yarn, maybe I'll do something different and knit a baby item instead of some socks. I'll just wait for the yarn to tell me what it wants to be when it grows up.

I guess thats about it. I told you it was gonna be a short post. I just finished knitting a cowl for a swap but I'll wait until my swapper receives it before I post a pic. Oh yeah, I almost forgot.......

I'm getting married! Yeah, my fiance (I love saying that) proposed to me on our anniversary and I was totally surprised. It was very romantic and I couldn't have pictured anything more special than the way he planned it. And the ring is freaking GREEN! What more could I ask for? See you guys in Rhinebeck!