Thursday, February 26, 2009

What the?.....


Why is it that for the last couple of years we've been getting the short end of the snow stick at Christmas, and then have been getting it dumped on us right as spring should be arriving?

For the last couple of weeks it has been raining (because you can't have spring with out showers, right? -especially in the Pacific Northwest), but still getting progressively warmer and nicer with more sunny breaks in the rain. Then this happens...

That's over 6 inches on the top of my jeep.

We had a few flurries of snow yesterday afternoon (not entirely uncommon to this area at this time of year) and then we started to get a dusting of snow last night. I said to myself, "No big deal. We'll probably get a couple of inches and have late-start school in the morning. No problem.", until my husband woke me up early this morning and informed me that we had 6 inches of snow and school was cancelled. I think I'm in for a long weekend of snow pants, cocoa and the real cure all (for me): knitting some nice, warm wool.

P.S. I dyed some really beautiful SW merino/alpaca rovings last night. I'll have some pictures as soon as they're dry.

P.P.S. It's still snowing.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Oh, that Funky goodness...

...Mmmmm. I do love this yarn. This is the latest 3 ply sock yarn from the wheel and it's all mine. It was spun from gorgeous Funky Carolina merino roving in the Grey Room colorway and it turned out just about as yummy as it gets.

I forgot to weigh this one, but it's around 4oz and an assured 470 yards. I was spinning extra fine to get the necessary yardage for a fingering weight Swallowtail Shawl (Ravelry link). I didn't get the recommended yardage for the fingering weight version (516 yards), but I've seen a lot of projects on Ravelry and many people get by with 450-460 yards, so I think with my 470+ I should make it through this one okay (I hope).

Right now I'm part of the way through knitting a baby cardigan for my first nephew, who is do to arrive in less than a week and I'm going to have to barrel through the rest of the knitting fast, as it has to be ready to go in just two days. I'm think I might end up mailing this one after all. Still, it's not impossible... and wanting to start the Swallowtail Shawl might be exactly the kind of motivation I need to get it done.

Friday, February 20, 2009

There really ought to be a drumroll...

... At least it feels like there should be. I've been working on this update for what feels like forever and here, I give you Mason, the final handspun yarn for this evening's update.

Mason is a 2 ply handspun merino yarn, sport to worsted weight, approximately 4.2 oz and 280 yards. The fiber was called Maison Modern and came from It was beautiful, lovely stuff to spin and the finished yarn is just as bright and lovely and smooshy as is gets.

Just a reminder, tonights shop update begins at 6:00pm pacific time and I hope everyone who can make it scores something nice! Thanks and Cheers! =)

Monday, February 16, 2009

Port Town

Here's the last handspun sock yarn for Friday's update. I've named it Port Town.

It's approximately 3.8oz and 375 yards of 3 ply (Navajo style) superwash merino sock yarn. I really enjoyed spinning this one and I hope whoever decides to give it a new home will really enjoy it. The colors are numerous in this one and are very festive as well.

As of now I only have one yarn left to ply, which I will probably do either tonight or tomorrow morning and then to finish preparing everything for the update (all the little details, photos and such). I'm starting to get very excited and I hope things go smoothly (mostly I've begun worrying about my somewhat iffy internet connection).

I'll be posting again in a couple more days with a preview of the final finished yarn.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


I went out today, braving the freezing-cold drizzle with my stuffy nose to photograph yarn #7. I have yet to decide on a name for this one. It's 100% merino, handspun in a thick-and-thin style.

The roving I spun this from was hideous, as was the resulting yarn. I had intended on having a nice blue and brown roving and instead this one came out blue, navy blue and orange with almost no brown (I still can't figure out where the orange came from). I figured that once the yarn was all spun it was probably going to have to be overdyed, I just hadn't made up my mind about which color to use over the blue and orange. I strongly considered green, but ended up going with Cushing's garnet. I haven't had a lot of luck dyeing roving with the garnet as it always comes out a really dark fushia (which I'm not that fond of), but as it turned out it's excellent for over-dyeing several different degrees of blue. I'm very pleased with the results.

I have no idea of the weight or yardage yet. It's probably between 180-200 yards and in the neighborhood of 4oz. I think this one will knit up beautifully.

I'm still working on the next sock yarn. I've been battling yet another cold since this last Sunday and I've had a very difficult time motivating myself to stay at the wheel. At this point, I'm speculating that I'll have met all my update spinning requirements by this coming Sunday, and I'll have a few more days to possibly work in some extra wooly stuff. Hope everyone has a nice Valentine's Day. Cheers=)

Friday, February 6, 2009


I need a moment to express my glee, as I'm now coming in ahead of schedule for the update. Here is yarn #6...

I've named her Sumatra -after my one of my favorite coffees. When I was dying this roving I was going for a nice coffee brown and I think this one came out just as it should have, a lovely coffee-on-cocoa brown.

Sumatra is a 3-ply (navajo style) superwash merino sock yarn. It weighs approx 3.8oz and an estimated 405yds (estimated because I haven't washed and reskeined it yet, which also explains why it still looks a bit "curly" in the photo).

I'm glad to be ahead of the game for once. I'm about a third of the way through spinning the next sock yarn. I'm hoping to be done spinning that one by Sunday. Maybe, just maybe I will manage to squeeze in another sock yarn before the update. I know better than to expect it of myself, but it's still fun to think I might be capable. Cheers till then. =)

Tuesday, February 3, 2009


Here's the latest completed handspun yarn for my next update (which has been officially scheduled for Friday, February 20th at 6:00pm Pacific time). I had to take a good long look at this one and really mull it over before a name popped into my head. I'm calling it "Reef"...

... because the more I look at it, the colors remind me of one of those tropical underwater scenes. Reef was spun from a 4oz braid of the mystery wool, which still reminded me a lot of BFL, though I'll never really know.

I started out spinning this one pretty fine, like I would for a two-ply sock yarn, and decided later that the fiber would have been somewhat better suited to a thicker yarn. In the end I decided to cable-ply it.

In cable plying, you spin your single(s), then ply back in the opposite direction as usual but with extra twist, and then finally ply the plied yarn back on itself in the same direction as the original single. This yarn is very dense and very strong. While it would be soft enough to wear against the skin, its texture reminds me more of a soft linen or hemp yarn. This baby doesn't bounce.

At the finish I ended up with around 200 yards of sport to light worsted before washing (it still needs to be reskeined), though I don't expect this one to shrink very much as it doesn't have much give.

Like the Sea Nymph art yarn, this one really surprised me. It's my first cabled yarn and I'm really growing attached to it. If it doesn't sell quickly I may nab it from the shop for myself.

I also have a sock yarn still on the wheel, which should be all spun by tomorrow morning, and I plan on beginning yet another 3 ply sock yarn while I let that bobbin rest. The one I finish spinning in the morning will be yarn #6.

When the update is ready I should have 4- 3ply sock yarns and 5 handspuns that are not sock yarns. Oh, and the yummy rovings should be in there, too. I'd aim to have 5 sock yarns ready, but I can already feel it in my gut that the 5th wouldn't be dry in time.

Well, I'm off to bed. I've got a breakfast date with the wheel. =)

Monday, February 2, 2009

Progress Photos

As promised, here are some pictures of my latest efforts. The first is called "Berry Picking"...

It's a 2 ply handspun BFL yarn, sport to worsted weight, approximately 4oz and 225 yards. The second and third pictures are of some of the SW Merino/Alpaca (70/30) roving I've been dyeing. I love this blend of fiber. It's become my absolute favorite. I may end up stealing one of these guys to spin for the update.

Now, I'm off to go spin before work. Yarn #5 is drying now and I'm aiming to have 2 more done before the end of this week. Wish me luck and wicked-fast speed. =)

Catching Up

I meant to have some great pictures of the things I've been working on lately, but my internet service is not being cooperative enough for me to upload them at the moment. I'll try to post some shop update progress pictures later when things are working better.

As I mentioned in my last post, I've been bitten (hardy-har-har) by the Twilight bug. I started reading the series less than two weeks ago and I finished the fourth and final book of the series yesterday afternoon. What an amazing read!! Thankfully, now that I'm done, life can continue with its usual schedule. I've finished spinning another couple of yarns, both of which are sport to worsted weight and I've been dyeing more roving as well (SWmerino/alpaca blend).

I'm thinking that most everything should be ready by the third week of February -if all goes well. In the next few weeks I'll be working hard to make this update a good one. Happy Ground Hog Day! =)