31 August 2008

And now for something completely different

Chalk it up as inspiration.

Normally this blog is focused on knitting and spinning and all topics related. However, today, I just have to share with you some photos I shot this summer. They are straight out of the camera with the exception of some noise reduction. No color added. Where did I have to go to get these loverlies? I stepped out my front door.

Two different sunsets in August 2008; Pacific Northwest/Washington State. Image on left with Canon 20d pro camera, image on right, point-and-shoot Canon Powershot.


24 August 2008

Scarves, Scarves, Scarves and...a Drop Stitch Scarf

I admit it, unabashedly, undeniably, I love knitting scarves. And hats. And socks. But, you already knew that. 
I live in the Pacific Northwest where those accessories are something that can be worn almost year round. Even today, 24 August 2008, it has poured rain all day and it's cool enough to throw a scarf around your neck if you head outside.

Knitting small things means I can do lots of them, try lots of colors, and textures.

Scarves, yes, lots of 'em!

Finished a few months ago - the Christine Vogel drop stitch scarf that 488 people on Ravelry have made (and another 1645 people have it queued up to do).
Yarn: Rayon Metallic by Blue Heron Yarns (Ravelry link)
Needle: Size 6 or 7, US (cannot exactly remember!)


Up close:

Tracking Your Spinning - Spinning Template Cards

 In an effort to get organized and hopefully see improvement of my spinning, I created some spinning project cards. Help yourself to them.

Creating a simple 4x6 index card with some info about how you got to where you got to on a finished project and putting a few inches of the spun yarn on the card helps if you ever hope to repeat it.

Download the template here.

A basket of my handspun of the past couple of years below. You can kind of see (in the index card box) that I stapled locks of the unspun wool on the cards, as well as any knit samples from the yarn.


10 August 2008

Calico Yarn finished

Started with Allspunup roving, 8.55 ounces, Alpaca and Wool (Merino I think) blend
Spun singles at about worsted weight for a total of 290 yards.

Before, courtesy of Allspunp:

During (on then off the niddy-noddy):

After a sit in water brought to about 190 degrees, then whirled in a salad spinner, yanked at a bit and hung to dry:

After After - So in love with this colorway, that I went out into my dye studio and duplicated it while my yarn was drying:

09 August 2008

Back to basics: Spinning singles, mostly

Gallery of recently finished yarns that I've spun and/or handdyed and spun. Destined to become hats, scarves, gloves. As always, click the photo for big.

I dyed, then spun this BFL roving into a bulky single: 130 yards total, about 4 ounces.

BFL Single - 130 yards, bulky weight 

I purchased this 70% wool/ 30% seacell  blend from Fleece Artist in the form of pencil roving (2 hanks at 100 grams and $12.75 USD each). All I did was spin and ply it. 400 yards total, two ply, about 6.5 ounces. I had a small hank of navajo ply  from the same lot at 97 yards, making the total spin at just under 500 yards for the full 200 grams. I was not fond of spinning the pencil roving -- nothing really to hold in your hand. I named the colorway "Forest Floor" for all the browns and greens with occasional blue.

wool and seacell, two ply

Wool/Seacell is very expensive - so I'm playing with wool/tencel to see if I can get a similar feel. It too is expensive, but not so bad. This I hand dyed and spun into medium-bulky singles: 175 yards for about 4 ounces. The superwash version seems to take the dye much more readily than the non-superwash version of the same fiber blend. I can't wait to knit with it to see how it works up. This is a sunny colorway with intense orange, yellow and shades inbetween.

Superwash wool and tencel, single, med-bulky, 175 yards


04 August 2008

Allspunup Fiber Challenge: First to post!

Probably due to me reading the instructions wrong rather than being johnny-on-the-spot, I was the first to post my spun fiber in the Allspunup Fiber Challenge. (link to Ravelry entry). See the many ways spinners spun up this wonderful fiber.
Oceanseaweed - don't you think? 
[click photo for big]

So fanstastic was the roving that it almost spun itself. Amazing colorway (a hallmark of Kristin's of Allspunup on Etsy.) I started spinning this fiber at noon yesterday, and it was set and hanging to dry by 5pm. Sweet!

80% Merino, 20% Silk
230 yards, single ply
12 wraps per inch

I tagged it with the name "Ocean Seaweed" as it looks like something from the sea - most certainly a reflection of the fact that I live near water.

03 August 2008

Scarf Heads for the Hills

Photo taken on 22 July 2008, an hour after my daughter told me that she was heading out to do a bicycle tour of the Western United States in less than 48 hours. Surprised by the news, I found myself gathering whatever I could to send her off. I pulled a scarf from my recently finished works-in-progress, and a camera out of my purse, gave her a hug and a kiss and off she went.

Oh, to be 24 again!

Adrienne heads for the hills.

Fiber: 80% Merino, 20% Silk; kettle dyed and spun into singles by me (this fiber is a DREAM to spin.)
Scarf pattern: Lynne Barr "Tilted Blocks" from the book: "Knitting New Scarves"

As of 3 August 2008, Aden has made it to Boise Idaho (origin: Seattle, WA - a total of over 500 miles), and has uploaded some photos of her trip. Here is one of her shots along the road:

Aden cycles the west. August 2008

Think good thoughts for Aden as she makes her way South to Colorado on her bike!


24 August update: Aden decided that one mountain pass in a month was enough. In Idaho she caught a bus and went to Reno. Then she cycled out to Gerlach, NV to take a job working at Burning Man for a month or so. She put on about 1,000 miles on her bicycle in a month. Go Aden!

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