Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Why yes I do still knit


I know it has been forever since I have been knitting. Spinning sort of takes over for the month of July, which is fine. I love spinning a lot, and it's fun to play with a fiber from start to finish. Speaking of start to finish, I have been working on a little Tee-top from my hand spun. It is turning out wonderful. I started with 8 ounces of 2 different colorways and plied them together. The colors have all of the autumn highlights that look great on me. I spun a sport weight that is not as consistent as I wish it was. Of course I spun it a year ago, and I have improved greatly since them. Anyhoo, I have about 1/2 the top finished. The pattern is Pioneer. I nice simple knit that shows off the colors of hand painted fibers. I should have no problems finishing it before I start back to work which is coming very quickly. Oui` too soon.

Monday, July 26, 2010

TdF 2010 Wrap Up


Here is what I completed during the tour. I feel like I ran right along side them most of the days. It's amazing how good spinning looks after several days of being at the wheel. These are some of the best yarns I have made. All different weights, methods, colors, and of course yardage. Here's the run down. Top to bottom, left to right in the picture.
4 skeins of Rhomney = 655 3-ply worst weight (long draw)
1 skein Dyeabolical = 255 3-ply sport weight (worsted)
1 skein Lupine = 278 3-ply DK weight (long draw)
1 skein Field of Screams = 211 2-ply bulky (short forward draw)
1 skein Rubber Grapes = 261 2-ply Dk weight (short backward draw)
1 skein Blue Moon = 290 2-ply worsted weight (short forward draw)
1 skein Pomegranate = 371 2-ply fingering weight (long draw supported)
1 skein Monkey Farts = 351 2-ply sport weight (short backward draw)
total = 2671 yards / 6 miles 2.78 pounds
Woo woo!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Lat Yarn for the Tour


3-ply DK weight after it plumped up. 278 yards. This is Lupine by Mountain Colors. Kara gave it to me as a birthday gift a couple of years ago. This really turned out pretty.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Tour Update

Another fun spin. Here is the singles that took me a couple of days to do. The colorway is called Monkey Farts after our team name. Which only makes it more fun to spin since I giggle when I get to a "stain".



Today I plied this into a lovely 2-ply 350 yards at about 16 WIP since it has some alpaca in there. Tomorrow is a rest day, and I am off to see Cats with dear daughter for my birthday thanks to my exceptionally wonderful hubby.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Took Long Enough


From Wednesday to Sunday all I spun was 4 oz. Yep that's right. I forget how thin one can spin Shetland and this puppy only wanted to be spun thin and long draw. Now I can spin long draw fairly well, but this was a challenge. The fibers just wanted to separate and slide away from each other, therefore, I had to go slow. Worth it in the end. It's scrumptious! 2-ply light fingeringweight yarn. The colors are soft and subtle ranging from purples to a deep red over the dark brown natural color. Ah!!


Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Tough Day in the Mountains

My back hurts. Plain and simple it hurts. Between pulling weeds and spinning it doesn't feel good. I knid have some, well a lot, of empathy for the riders today. Mountain tops eat some of the boys up over the past few days. Today was no exception. What I find amazing is the spectators. They are nuts! I love to watch the race, lord knows, but these people are going to get someone killed. They not only crowd the riders as they pass by, but touch, pat, and shake their fists nearly in their faces. oh and then there are those that feel the need to run along side of the riders screaming in their ears. Hey it's cool to have heroes, but let's not kill them in our excitement.




Okay onto my spinning. I love how this turned out. The colorway is called New Moon from Spunky Eclectic. There were lots of different ways to spin this since the fiber started out with light to dark teals with a mix of white, to smokey lavenders and deep blues with whites, to almost a dark navy. I could have split it with all lights on one and the dark on the other, fractural spun, or a graduation of colors. I decided on the later as a 2-ply. Either way I was going to have some barber poling, but I thought it would blend together as it graduated through the colors. Yes indeedy that just what happen. See the teal stripe going done the hank, that's the beginning and the darkest color being near the end. Very soft and squishable 290 yards of 2ply DK to worsted weight. It's nice when things come together well.




Friday, July 9, 2010

TdF update







Wow have I spun a ton for the 1st week. I am over a pound of yarn completed. Lots of yarns for knitting with later. Today I finished plying up the two fibers that I had completed as singles.

First up is Dyeabolical Fibers. I love how this turned out. The colors are definitely irresistible the way they play off of each other. It's a 3 ply sport weight. I was shooting for socks, but the yardage is probably a little to low. Still I got 255 yards of the softest yarn.









Second is Spunky Club in Rubber Grapes. Its an interesting combo that I had never tried til now, but super easy to spin with a very soft halo. It's Corriepaca, which is a blend of corriedale and alpaca. Really fun. I like how the deep purples and reds play off of the green like the grapes hiding amoungest the leaves in a basket. It's a 2-ply with 261 yards of DK weight.






The race, the bike race that is has been a bit boring. Tomorrow they it the Alps. I do say I love watching the countryside more than the bikers. I have learned a lot more about the strategies that are used this year. Still don't understand most of it, but enough to get by. Onward and upward!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Shauna's Fleece


Yeah it's done! I could have had better results, but processing a fleece is learning from the experience. I started with 3.4 lbs of very greasy fleece, and ended with 1500 plus yards of 3-ply yarn. As I continued to scour, card, and spin I got more and more consistent. I learned a ton from processing this fleece. Here's the list:

1. use Kookaburra to scour - house did not smell like a farm, and the fiber came clean in one wash and one rinse

2. learned to use a drum carder - this got better, lost a good portion of fiber due to fiber not clean enough, teased out appropriately, holding on to the fiber instead of feeding the carder smaller chunks, put fiber through twice for a better batt

3. used a WIP guide - a handy little gadget that measure wips with lines on a piece of plastic to use as your spinning. This was the most helpful thing I learned to use. My singles were much more consistent by taking a measurement often.


My plan is for something with cables. After all the purpose of spinning a 3ply is to see the cables better. I am keeping this one natural. It's so pretty.
Oh the 2 bobbins of color are the singles from the previous post.


Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Tour de Fleece - update

I can't believe we are already in July more or less the start of Tour de France. I find it amazing just how scary some of the roads are for these riders. Not only are they packed together like sardines, but then spectators want them to ride under huge flags or pat them on the back. Oh and there's the crashes! Holy moley have they been bad. Several riders are continuing with cracked ribs, elbows, and /or wrists. Today they rode over 8 miles across cobblestones. I can't imagine what their bodies feel like after they get off their bikes. I think I wouldn't be able to walk for a month! Anyhoo, I have been spinning like crazy. I only have one picture for today of some very squishy goodness.


Sunday, July 4, 2010

Happy 4th of July!

I love the month of July. Not only is it the month of my birthday, but also the time to consider the ability to have independence from others. I think sometimes we forget that our lives have been blessed by those who were willing to die for us to be free. I really get frustrated with my middle schoolers because they don't feel that they have to stand for the flag or say the pledge of allegiance just because they have the right. Each year, I have to have that heart to heart with someone about rights and freedom. I agree that we have choices and do respect the opinion of others, I just believe that you shouldn't shit on the graves of those that gave you those rights. In closing, blessed are those that have given me my freedom and my right to choose.
Happy Independence Day America.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

A Day with Good Friends and Fiber

Hey, what a glorious day it was. I spent the day hanging out with Annie and her kiddos. Although I really only got to see dear daughter, she had plenty to talk about since she just got back from France. What a wonderful experience. Ann and I played with the drumcarder watching her lovely, and I do mean lovely grey fleece turn into big puffs of goodness. Of course there was a lot of fleece, and I think Ann might be sick of the carder by the time she is done :)

While Ann played with her fleece, I got to rummage through her yarns and pick out my trade. Cool trade, I got some Socks that Rock and some Schaffer Anne. It was a great way to spend the day. Now to pick out some patterns! Woo!