La Mesa has a special Christmas program where they close the main streen in the old part of town. Our spinning group met there every night to do spinning demonstrations and I got to go to two of the nights. It was amazing the questions we got and I could answer some of them! Funny comments were. "What are you knitting?" or, "What are you weaving?" The same questions I might have had less than two months ago. The men were the funniest. Wanting to know how it all worked, inspecting the wheels with mechanic's eyes. They were GREAT!
Some batts and some spinning...
I made some batts. Two to be exact. Remember that fleece I STUFFED into the washer? Well, I made a "Sandwitch" and on the drum carder I put a layer of the white Friesen fleece, then I put some of my hand dyed Merino in purple, orange, and teal green, each in layers, then another layer of the white Friesen. I forgot to take a picture of that. But, here is the batt pulled already into roving
and that batt turned into this...
I spun up the batt and then plied it with a very thin thread that I had in similar colors from my quilting stash. I made two of these, but of course, they look nothing alike... You can't tell from this next picture, but it is true
See what I mean? Ha.
Now, for some actual knitting.... I am making Klaralund out of Noro and this pic below is the back bottom of the sweater. I know I am probably last person making this, but that is ok. It has been fun looking at everyone elses Klaralund. It is a quick and easy knit....
Whooooo... I'm obsessed. I learned about re-skeining last night. When
a skein is listed as "Hand Painted" and it looks all verigated and cool
it is because the yarn has been painted in big blocks of color like this
And then I turned it into this...
Now, both together...
Lovely, isn't it!
More later, dudes!
Well, Typepad has been down for the last three days and I haven't been able to make a post until now. It is driving me nuts!
What has been going on here? Christmas parties galore, shopping, knitting, shopping, buying, shopping, spinning, blending colors on the drum carder, dyeing, you name it.
Here are some fiber, yarney fun things to check out if you are so inclined.
This stuff above is what I dyed last week (see previous post) and didn't like it because of the pale colors and the white yarn peaking through where no dye touched. Blech. I OVER-dyed this color which was inspired by my mother in law's scarf that she made while here. Scroll down a bit and you can see it.
Here is the hat I made for my mom for Christmas and since I know she NEVER reads my blog I know I can post it here. I am making a scarf to match in the same yarn (to die for!). And, the stitch I made is BEAUTIFUL. Look how cool the decrease stiches are. They magically make that swirl on the top. We are all off to Breckenridge, CO for some good skiing in Feb. and this is just the thing she needs.
Lesson #1 Do NOT shove the whole fleece into the washer. It is too big to fit the whole thing and wash it well.
Lesson #2 Do not try to dry that same fleece on a cloudy cold day. It will take 3-4 days total.
One must wait for some sun here in the Point Loma area of San Diego to get that.
I played with it on my drum carder and this stuff is beautiful! It is a fleece from a sheep called a Friesian Milk Sheep. I'm surprised that this type of fleece is not more widley used for spinning.
In class we learned some techniques that I have been playing with since Wednesday. And I spun this up adding in some tussah silk. Amazingly S O F T. Now, if I can only figure out how to make more than one batt of the same color so I can make enough to do something with. Right now I am making batts that are 0.8 oz. Not even one ounce!!!!
What you see above is my own Freisan blended with orange, purple and green Merino roving, and some white tussah silk roving. Yummy.
Is this a boring post? Sorry to those of you who are not fiber people. It is just tooo fun!
Well, I took a lot of photos today, so you are going to get an eyeful. Erica stayed home today because of a high temp. and a huge cough. She sounds like a seal. So here she is sitting by the fire knitting, with Missy by her side. I think she looks so beautiful! "Hey," said the Mommy in me, "I made her. Dang, she is cool!"
Ok, so here is the dyed wool/silk singles that I did in class yesterday. They lightened up quite a bit. Not sure I like the colorway so I think I MIGHT try to overdye them and choose another color. We shall see....
Alrighty, I broke out my new drumcarder and made up a batt for the first time so below is what you see happening.
Here is the red on the drum. Looks cool, eh?
So, I placed the two green batts with the red in between and it made this HUGE roving. It turned out to be a bit pastel for me. I guess I'll spin some up and show you tomorrow what I think. Not really a color I would choose, but that is half the fun. No harm done - it's all in the experimenting. Can you see Deb Menz's book open there in the backround? THE B I B L E of spinning and dyeing.
Ok, more later.
Show me your stuff!
HHhhmmmmmm, more knitting, more dyeing. What could it be? Well, I'm making some surprise things for the coming holiday gift giving so I won't show those here. Just know that they are either done, or in the works.
Yesterday was dye day in my fiber class. So, here are some photos of the work in progress... I'm working on 4 skeins of 50% Merino, 50% Silk in singles. Now that is some yummy in my hands! I plan on knitting some sort of wrap...
Very fun, and very cool. I'll post the washed and dried versions later today. I also did some Blue Faced Leister (can't spell, or pronounce that) roving in blue and green and a violet color that turned out pretty neat-o.
I also met with my friend Wendy Black yesterday. That girl has got it goin' on. She has a whole room of fiber! Of course, I got some Merino to spin up in black - I need a black sweater. I got a pound to start out, and I know I will need more. Then I got another pound of the 50% silk, 50% Merino to spin up and go with the other pound I started. I'll dye that into something cool and who knows what that will be.
Alrighty, more photos to follow today.
My Mother in Law is here from Vancouver, B.C. Canada. My Mother in Law. Yes, my Mother in Law! Usually she has something to teach me, ie laundry tips, kitchen tips, wifely tips, all around being a better person tips. Well, this time, I taught her something!
I got her to try out Knitting! Last year, I wanted her to try it out while we were all together in Palm Desert, but she was not quite ready, saying she didn't have the time, etc. Well, this time I got her cornered while here at our house and took her to a knitting store (The Black Sheep in Encinitas) After about 30 minutes of yarn goodness, touching, stroking, putting it under her chin silently to see if it was "skin worthy," she found something she liked. I didn't bug her, just quietly watched her eyeing all the wool and then helped her when asked. She chose two balls of a veregated yarn and size 13 needles.
Now, here is the amazing part. I spent about 5 minutes demonstrating exactly HOW to do each step, then had to leave to pick up the girls at school. One hour later she had knit almost 1/2 the ball up into the beginning of a beautiful scarf. I was amazed! Then, after dinner I was soooo tired and went to bed to read and fall asleep and this morning she said that the only reason she stopped was because she ran out of the ball and didn't know how to start the second ball. W H A T ?????!!!!!!
Unbeliveable. Simply Unbelievale. I taught her how to knit and she took off with it! I mean, at this point in my knitting venture I had holes, dropped stitches, yarn overs, you name it. Nope, she had NOT a ONE! I can't even believe it. Her scarf is perfect.
I snuck that photo up above then came around and took these two. Isn't she cute!!!!!
It's official, she is a knitter.
Today was dye day at my fiber class so stay tuned for some cool colors and fibers to be seen tomorrow.
Have a great one!
And Erica at bat - Good eye Erica, bad pitch!
And now for some big news on the spinning front.... I bought a Majacraft "Little Gem 2" from Carolina Spinning in San Francisco. I was unsure on how it would spin and just took the word of all the spinners out there and went ahead and got her.
Her name? Gemma of course (pronounced Jim-a).
Gemma weighs 10 pounds, folds down into the fetal postiton and comes all apart to make her about one foot long and has her own padded carrying case for easy travel. I've tried about 4 different wheels and this is THE easiest wheel to treadle, spin and take with you. It's like butter....
I brought with me up to the ranch some baby Suri Alpaca dyed in beautiful fire reds, oranges and small amounts of blue and green and thought I'd spin that up. You can see the big hank in the photo above.
A new friend of mine at my spinning meetings on Wednesday made me this little holder for the wheel oil. She is a famous beader and has written a few books on the subject. Check this out... Isn't it pretty!
Hope you like it all!