Sunday, March 29, 2009

Weekend Update

Gotta love St. Louis! People in shorts and flip flops for most of the work week, and snow and cold for the weekend. Typical weather conditions. Since the weather was so gloomy I spent a great part of the weekend in a lot of pain. Quick weather changes makes my arthritis extremely bad, but yeah, I deal. I have been reading a lot lately. I go through these spots where I do a lot of one thing, and hardly anything else. Lately it's been reading. I got hooked on the Sookie Stackhouse mysteries by Charlene Harris. Great fluffy quick reads. I only have one left to read, and I am waiting for it to arrive in the library. Fortunately, I have a good selection of books at home that I haven't read either, so plenty to read.

On the fiber front. I did manage to finish spinning Gypsy. This took along time since it's a 3 ply yarn. I am always amazed at the way fibers turn out. Here is an excellent example of how different a fiber can turn out. I love the way this turned out. I have a nice worsted weight, unbelievably soft! I'm thinking it will make a nice yoke for a sweater next winter with a berry or an cream bottom.





Lawn Guy's sweater is coming along nicely too. I have about 14 inches done now. I still need about another 2-3 inches until I will be at the arm pit. Between now and then, I need to learn how to do magic loop 2-at-a-time for the sleeves other wise I am sure the stripes won't line up.


Also, I turned the heel on my first toe-up sock. So far so good. It looked a little big when I was starting on it, so I shorten the length by a half inch and it seems to have worked.
Happy fiber trails!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

The Unexpected Trip

Hi all! I'm back from my unexpected trip. Thursday morning I was browsing Ravelry when I came acrossed an open spot for a spinning class in Columbia. I called, reserved the spot, and off I went. Hubby is just great. While I dressed and packed he reserved a motel room for the night. By 1 o' clock I was out the door. Fortunately Columbia is very close to St. Louis, so I was there around three. I decided as long as I was coming up the night before I would visit the local yarn shops. There are actually three, but I only visited 2 of them during the trip. I went to Hillside Yarn shop on Thursday. It's a pretty nice store. Fairly large and carried yarns that I had never seen before. Lots Frog Tree and Trekking. I have a good friend that's having a girl in late April. I found the cutest little sweater pattern for her and some very pretty yarn. Oh yeah, they carry Brittney cable needles. I've been looking for these! I also found the coolest stitch markers in town. The lady laughed and said her daughter had made them, but the mother did not believe she would actually sell them. Funny huh! I can think of at least three or four friends that would think they are cool enough to buy.






On Friday I set off to the other fiber shop, True Blue, for the Spinning for Knitting class. The instructor was a woman named Merike Saarniit. She is a renown knitter and spinner. Merike was a fantasitc teacher. She had lots of tips that she shared with us. She explained the difference in spinning techniques and different types of fibers. She taught us how to spin woollen and the long draw method. Long draw is so fast! We got to spin lots of different fibers including a merino/silk blend, camel, cashmere, angora, Cotswold, mystery fibers, and mohair. She also taught us how to spin a perfectly balanced yarn and how to check for the right amount of twist. Additionally, we learn to spin slubby yarn on purpose, and adding mohair locks for art yarn. This is a lot of time consumer work. I had no idea! My hats off to those who make art yarns!




The class was from 10 to 5 and worth the money to learn some new things. Overall she told me I was a excellent spinner. It was a nice complement.

Of course there was fiber to be bought. A merino silk top (pink) like we used in class, some mohair, and pretty colored fiber that I thought might make a nice pair of winter socks.

Of course I started another sock to boot!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

The Visitor From the Northeast



Last week when I arrived home there was a package waiting. Hmm... I wasn't expecting anything, so of course I opened it because curious minds have to know. Out popped my feathery friend Sir Edmund! Edmund is our mascot from the Ravelry group Kiwi Spinners. A friend, Tink, and I started the group dedicated to those of us that have an Ashford Kiwi spinning wheel. Any hoo, Edmund came with a few goodies for me, and a journal for each us of write about what we did while Edmund visited.

Here he is with Buster.



Buster was the only one of boys that didn't think he was dinner.

Sir Edmund has lots of spinning advice as well.



There will be more come as we go a visiting during the week. Stay turned.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Life....

I can't believe its been so long since I posted. I have been busy at work and haven't done much in the way of fun. I found out I have to change jobs because the are eliminating my position. This sucks! I really my school and I have no idea where I'll end up. Of course this is Spring Break, so everyone is out of town and I won;t find out anything for more than a week. Its going to be along week. On the upside, at least I have a job!

On the knitting front. Ugh, more of the same. Lawn guy's sweater is coming along at a snail's pace. My entrelac scarf is going to be frogged. I just don't like the way I spun the yarn. Not my best. There are lots of places where the yarn is so much thinner that I am losing the density of the fabric. Oh well, this is life.

I did manage to spin up some lovely orange yarn that I am very pleased with. Socks, it will be.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Cold Days and Quick WIP's

The weekend was a prefect time to knit. I know there is grass already starting to turn green and a little bit of budding on the trees, but I was just pleased with staying in and knitting.

I started a Le' Slouch with my hand spun. I made it with the seed stitch pattern. It was a nice quick knit. I still had 1.5 oz of yarn still left, so I decided to see if I could make a simple pair of fingerless mitts out of the rest. Yeah I did. I think I have a few yards left over still. Nice! The gloves took no time at all. I actually knit the pair on Sunday. I love the way they fit. Nice and snug around my fingers and the cuff is at a good length.

Other than knitting, I have been reading up a storm. I am not a fast reader, but I have read a book in a day for the last three weekends. I am nearly finished with the Sookie Stackhouse books and I need to find something new to read. Ugh! That's not easy after reading one author for awhile.



Last but not least, take a look at this gorgeous fiber I got in the mail the other day. Time to play with the wheel!