Friday, December 17, 2010

Lorna's Laces

More Handspun
Originally uploaded by PhoebeJ
I bought some roving by Lorna's Laces from WEBS. The color is bittersweet. I've been spinning it obsessively. This is the first skein. I'm really happy wit how it came out. It's more orange and red than the original roving which seemed to be more purple. I guess this is because are the fibers are opened up and drafted they appear lighter in color.

I have no idea what I'm going to make with this. It's gorgeous and I have 10 ounces. I'll have to see what inspires me.

Lorna's Laces Roving

Friday, December 03, 2010

This Spinning Thing

This Spinning Thing
Originally uploaded by PhoebeJ
Well, it's true: spinning is addictive. I bought some blue-faced Leicester and silk roving at Rhinebeck and found it was a joy to spin. Since I'm still a rank amateur, the results were a bit irregular. I call it lumpy. Julie, my teacher, calls it "textured." I'm making a scarf from that yarn.

So off I went to the Etsy store of Gale's Art whose roving I had purchased and bought some more. This was without the silk, just BFL and dyed in cotton candy colors. It's also a dream to spin--easy to draft. The color combinations are fun too. I did half a bobbin, and I've started a second bobbin. (For those not in the know, unless you have a giant fly and bobbin, you can only ply two half-bobbins because two half bobbins will fill up a whole bobbin when plied. Giant bobbins are on my list for next year.) I'm not sure what I'm going to make with it. I keep saying fingerless gloves, but who knows. It's going to be even more colorful when it's plied. Perhaps a tad loud? Yarn can never be too loud for me!

Stay tuned.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Little Debbie Handspun

Little Debbie Handspun
Originally uploaded by PhoebeJ
Here's some of the handspun yarn I have made from Little Debbie's fleece. The wheel in a Bayne's.

This is some of the first spinning I've done and the first on this new wheel. I have to do a bit more and then I'm going to ply it. Not sure what I'm going to do with it afterwards. Perhaps I will do some Kool-Aid dyeing. And maybe I'll make a hat because I'm not going to have a whole lot of this, mostly because I'm impatient.

I have also spun some of the roving that I dyed and I love it. I'm being disciplined about saving that until I have this plied. That yarn is really lovely and cries out to be a scarf. Stay tuned.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Toxic Socks

Toxic Socks
Originally uploaded by PhoebeJ
Finally started these "Toxic Socks." I promised myself I wouldn't start them until I finished the Hibiscus for Hope socks. I did and here are the Toxic Socks. The urge to start the next project can be overpowering as every knitter knows, but I was strong!

So far the pattern is pretty easy. It's written to be done on one circular needle, but I'm doing them on 5 double-points so I have to do a little amending of the pattern. That's been fairly easy thus far. These socks are going to be a bit wide, but I think they'll be good for winter. They are longer than most of the socks that I knit with a length of about 10 inches above the heel. Not quite knee socks, but higher than most of my other socks.

The game plan is to finish these and start on some more socks with my hand-dyed yarn. I have shown great restraint in not getting any of that on some needles. Startitis, the curse of the avid knitter!

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Hibiscus for Hope

Hibiscus for Hope
Originally uploaded by PhoebeJ
Well, I finally finished these socks, started in April. Way too long, but I took up spinning, started a sweater (still unfinished) and did a lot of other things. I finally forced my self to finish them because I'm dying to start knitting the pattern Toxic Socks, black and white socks with skull and crossbones. How can I resist that? But I was disciplined enough to finish at least one project before casting on another. You knitters know how much restraint that took!

This pattern was given to me by Mezzodiva who gives you the pattern when you donate to her breast cancer walk. So these are good deed socks.

With fall coming, at least I have new socks to look forward to.

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Hand-Dyed Yarn

Hand-Dyed Yarn
Originally uploaded by PhoebeJ
Just a note to show what the hand-dyed yarn looks like when it was wound into a cake. The one on the left is merino and silk while the one on the right is superwash merino and nylon. I definitely prefer the way the merino and silk took the dye although I'm very happy with both outcomes.

I have to roll up the roving too. It will be interesting to see how that looks when it's spun.

Sunday, June 06, 2010

Dyeing Class

Dyed Yarn
Originally uploaded by PhoebeJ
I went down to Stockton, NJ, to take a class in hand dyeing fiber. We were lucky to have lovely weather--not too hot and the threatened thundershowers never materialized. All to the good since we were working outside.

I dyed two skeins of yarn from Knitpicks--one superwash merino and nylon and one merino and silk--and four ounces of pure white roving.

The yarn in the foreground is the merino and silk. It took the dye really well. Almost nothing washed out during the rinse. The superwash also worked well, but more dye did rinse out. I'm not a pastel girl, but I really like the merino and silk which I think looks like spring flowers. It will make some really terrific socks.

My Roving

Cousin Dan thinks the roving is reminiscent of a t-shirt from a Grateful Dead concert. This is not a criticism. I'm looking forward to seeing how it spins up. Of course, with the Little Debbie project, I don't know how much time I'm going to have to spin it. Maybe when I have a wheel and don't have to spin it on the drop spindle...

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Little Debby Project

Little Debby
Originally uploaded by PhoebeJ
A group from the Essex Spinners decided to buy a fleece from Julie Gerow and divided it for each of us to use it as we see fit. I am documenting my "sheep to finished object" sojourn.

This photo shows the fleece as it looked when I took it out of the bag it came in. Little Debby is a coated sheep so her fleece is very clean and free of vegetable matter. Julie skirted the fleece so the yucky parts were eliminated. This is one pound of fleece. It has brown and grays and some lovely silvery parts. This is a "dark" portion of the fleece. Some spinners got lighter portions.

Washed Fleece

I pulled off a section of fleece and washed it twice. It is now drying in the powder room. I plan to flick card it and spin it on a drop spindle since I don't yet have a wheel. I'm a complete novice at spinning so the progress of this project should be interesting and perhaps a little trying.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Knitting Olympics Afghan

Olympic Afghan-2/18/2010
Originally uploaded by PhoebeJ
So here's the afghan I started as my entry in the Knitting Olympics. I started it during the opening ceremonies and here it is after a little less than a week. Now since the Olympics are nearly half over, this should be nearly half done, but it's about 25% complete. I guess I'm hoping that I will experience "negative splits" which is a term we use in running when you run the second half of the race faster than the first. I'm putting on a full-court press today because I'm busy for a couple of evenings this week so I'll need to put down some rows to keep up.

Stay tuned for more progress.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Olympic Knitting Stash

Olympic Knitting Stash
Originally uploaded by PhoebeJ
Okay, folks. The Knitting Olympics (the Yarn Harlot's invention) and the Ravelympics start tomorrow at the opening ceremonies of the Vancouver Olympics. I am planning on making an afghan using the yarn in this photo. The deal is you have to finish by the time they extinguish the Olympic flame. Wish me luck. I'll be firing up the old Addi Turbo tomorrow night. Pictures to follow.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Finished Port Orford Sweater

Well, I finally finished this sweater after losing the instructions, losing the replacement instructions and resisting sewing it together. The knitting is rarely the hard part for me. It's the associated stuff that gets me down.

I like the sweater a lot although I don't find it slimming. And today it caught on everything--a cat's claw, a nail at work, my bracelet. So it's going to have a lot of little threads sticking out if I'm not careful. But, hey, it's for wearing, right?

I still have a hoodie that needs sewing up. I did a little less than half of it during the first of the 2008 presidential debates. I finished the Port Orford by taking it with me to the Wednesday knitting group at the Village Sheep in Washington Depot, CT. The company was great and the tediousness of the sewing was thus mitigated. Maybe the hoodie needs to go with me next week.

Turns out my friend Cathy made a couple of very similar sweaters for her kids. Maybe the similarity of our taste is one of the reasons we've been friends for over 40 years.

Onward and upward to new projects and the Ravelympics!