Monday, June 11, 2012

Spin spin spin spin spin

Ever since I got a new wheel things around my house have been tornado-tastaic. (Spinning up a storm!)

I think I mentioned I got a new spinning wheel a while back, it's an ashford joy (cue squealing), and its little bitty and travel friendly.

there was a little bit of a learning curve, switching from the old creaky wheel I learned on. Turns out I was treadling WAYYY to fast, and also the parts needed oiled so that the yarn would pull on correctly. :)

Incorporating a little of the festus-de-Estes...Here's what I did last night!

It's 1 oz of angora (that I bought at wool festival 2011) I spun up myself, and plied with sparkly silver thread and BEADS!!! Its lucious....I might just go pet it some more.

I have about 108 sparkly magnificent yards. Its a light sport-weight (baby yarn). Any project ideas?

For those of you who are perpetually searching for spinning tips, like I am, I spun it semi-worsted. I went with a from-the-fold drafting method and then inchwormed the bejesus out of it so that it wouldnt go all fluffy riffic and fly apart. I OVER spun the single, so that I could ply it with thread and not have a finished product that came apart in my hands. Plying with beads is TRES easy heres what you do:

1-string beads onto a STURDY thread. (something that will hold up to lots of bead rubbing across-ness)
2- tie one strand of single and thread that beads are on in a knot
3- begin plying as normal
4- every so often, slide a bead up to the drafting triangle, and pop that bad boy in!
5- keep on a spinnin.
6- continue until you are out of thread/beads. Tie a knot between thread/single whenever you break it, so your beads don't run off

some tips- be sure your beads fit through your wheel's orifice. (it makes me giggle too, but is rather important)

Sunday, June 10, 2012

What blogger, where?

I apologize, my darlingest dear doodly readers, for the gaping silence that has been residing in this part of the blarg0sphere. This semester was, in a couple words, le crap. Le crap that involved a lot of 3-4 nights in a row being awake working on homework. Soh! I am back now, and promise to do a better job. :)

Fun knitting related things you've missed out on:
1)new spinning wheel
2) new loom!
3) sheeps in a bag!
4) job at a yarn store
5) Estes wool festival! SQUEEE

I will update you on these in later posteses.

For now, I give you my newest trial in evil:

A wedding shawl for my friend Amanda. It's from the Crown Prince Square Shawl (link here).

Right now, I have completed 3 ows. of the center.

I havent done a whole lot on it, and I've been sucked in by some lucious Camel-Silk fiber that I got at wool market yesterday, and eeep! Help me get motivated for nupps peoples!

Monday, February 27, 2012

A137, take THAT

Have you ever spent more time fixing the sweater you're knitting than actually knitting the sweater?

This sweater was one of those.

Meet the poetically named A137. Pattern here, mine, below

(please ignore the soggy towel above it there, blocking was...a fiasco?)

I originally wanted to rework it, and put the sweater together top down. I should have. It would have saved a lot of fighting.

I finished the back, the neck looked a little small but I trudged on. I finished the front. The neck was DEFINITELY too small, but I pretended it wasn't, because hey, the sleeves might add some space right? It's a raglan, but they could definitely add some heads small!

I finished the sleeves, get them almost all sewn in. They are four inches too short. Rip sleeves out. Reknit, using markers, EXACTLY 4 inches longer.

Put sleeves back together, set them in, they are two inches too long. Swear, rip out. Reknit the cast off edge. Sleeves are now one inch too short. Try to smoosh them into place (I believe the technical term is easing but smooshing is more like what happened).

Sleeves still don't fit. Swear, throw the whole thing on the floor, stomp on it, kick it, have a glass of wine and swear never to finish sweater.

Twenty minutes later: reknit sleeves this time slipping stitches so the sweater is EXACTLY where the sleeves are. Realize the problem...They are supposed to be too short idiot, its a raglan. The top and front get sewn to the top of the sleeve caps...move on.

Try sweater on, neck doesn't fit on head. (wondering why I didn't see this coming).

Rip out front, back, sleeves back to normal sized head width. Reseam. Sweater now fits over head.

Time to put on the collar! This will be easy! Its just picking up stitches and knitting!

End up with huge boat neck cowl. Rip out. Throw down.

Ten minutes later, end up with slightly less huge boat neck cowl.

Reread instructions 9 times to figure out that it says "decrease at seams if necessary for collar to lie flat".

Reknit cowl collar. End up with slightly less huge cowl thing. Decide cowls are cute. Put sweater on. Look in mirror.

Rip off sweater, rip out cowl, throw it all on the floor and hope the dog eats it.

Have another glass of wine. Last whack at the collar. Finish collar, bind off. Gee it lays so nicely!

Try to put on, refuses to fit over head.

Swear, rip out cast off, spend 45 minutes googling "stretchy bind offs" for one that doesn't look too strange. Use this.

Put on, YAY IT FITS! time for sleep, 3 am.

Next morning: Sew in all ends, in the attempt to sew in collar, eliminate stretchy-ness of bind off. Rip out 3 times, loosely tack end to rest of collar, hope maybe blocking will fix stupid-looking ness.

For the next 3 days:sew in ends.

Dunk in tub full of water. Realize sweater is now circus tent, not sweater....

Throw in dryer. Pull out, realize all hair conditioner used to make wool less itchy has not been washed out.

Ignore for 3 days.

Think about swearing off knitting, but then what would I do with all that yarn...Stuff pillows?

Redunk sweater, end up again, with circus tent, but at least now its not elephant-appropriate. Remove from tub, realize still greasy, redunk sweater, repeat.

2 days of dunking sweater later, throw in dryer again. Leave in dryer too long. Color changes have felted, GAH!

Turn sweater inside out, stretch color changes mercilessly. Cut some strings, stretch some more. Pull on head, start sticking things into sleeves to help stretch out some. Feel like idiot. Redunk. Problem solved.

Leave in kitchen floor to dry. Come home to find a new dog-kibble hiding place inside the sweater.

Remove kibbles, flip over, place in bedroom floor. Come home to find new dog bed has been made, on sweater.

Remove dog hair, shake out, still damp, so place in bathtub, which dog fears. Go 2 days without showering (its okay it was the weekend, no one saw me mom).

TA DAA!!! Finished sweater.

If you feel you must must must have one? I highly recommend doing this sweater as a top down raglan. Consult Ann Budd's handy book of sweater patterns if you have no clue what I'm talking about.

Good luck.

Thursday, February 2, 2012


Some australian bums for you all:
Courtesy of our Australian correspondent-Zach.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

In non-knitting news

Dear Neighbors-

My darling roommate... panty snatcher... butter thief... dog is NOT A BOY....SHE IS A GIRL...
So, to help you all out with your confusion, I have decked her out in the GIRLIEST COLLAR I could find.


She would appreciate it if you a) Admire her new collar, b) tell her she is very pretty, c) pet her a little, d) STOP CALLING HER A CUTE LITTLE BOY!

Thank you.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Spinny Spinny Spin

So- for those of you who don't know, I got a new spinning wheel for my birthday *SQUEEE!!!!***
Its a beauty-ful ASHFORD JOY....

(note my little helpers toes in the top corner there)

but had been having a few...problems with it.. mainly i wasn't using it right because my previous wheel was so ghetto. but....Lily managed to help me get things sorted out and now I'm on a roll...

Seriously I might not knit for a while.

Two days in? Look what I've done:

Thats 8 oz of fiber!!! I feel insanely productive.

Now...what to spin next....Maybe I'll let Aimee pick. ($20 I end up with the smelliest fiber in the stash, any takers?)

Monday, January 23, 2012


I live do I put this nicely. A nefarious blanket thief.

No joke, I woke up this morning, the comforter was missing, I was freezing. I look at the floor, and there lies my DOG all cozied up in my blanket....

So to solve this leetel problem. I made her her own! 6 skeins of baby pink Plymouth Heaven later:

A happy little burglar. Lets just hope this solution works. Otherwise, its going to continue to be a cold winter.