Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Back to Blogging!

I'm going to get back into the habit of blogging everyday about my fiber activity. I really find this a great way to look back at what I've accomplished. So I have 3 things to blog about today. The first one is my most recent completed spinning project. Back in April I took a space dyeing class with Leef Bloomenstiel from Apple Leef Farms at the DFW Fiberfest along with my friends Edee, Ellen and Karen. I chose Teal, Turquoise and Chestnut dyes. I had approximately 4 oz of fiber to dye.
Roving in dye pot.
After the class I took my fiber home and rinsed it out and let it dry on my fiber (sweater) dryer. I really thought the colors came out beautifully.
Roving after dyeing on drying rack.
When I spun this I first split it into 2 parts as equally as I could. I had 3 separate sections of roving and I split each section into 2. The I spun each "half" to a bobbin. As I spun it I alternated between the 3 sections that had different amounts of each color in them. Now, I really like a barber pole effect when I spin hand dyed roving, mine or anyone else's dye job. Its my preference. I have tried other methods of plying to keep the color changes closer together such as Navajo plying but I wanted to have as much yardage as possible from this.
Roving spun to fingerling weight.
So this is my final product. It is essentially fingerling weight although I can't find my WPI tool right now so I can't be certain. The colors are lovely and I believe this will make a beautiful final product. I have approximately 449 yards of this. I'll let you know what I'll be making. Right now I'm leaning toward socks.

The next subject is the hats I've knitted lately. I'm into hats right now and I had some yarn left over from a "stealth" project and decided to use Fair Isle technique to make a hat. I found my friend Carissa's hat pattern on Ravelry. Carissa has a blog called Carissa Knits and the hat pattern can be found, along with many, many other wonderful patterns, at Carissa Knits: Snowflake Hat. I used sport weight yarn and thought I figured my gauge correctly but should have knitted the hat in the large adult size as Carissa suggested. The small adult hat fits me but with my new longer, curly hair its not quite right. So I will probably make a larger one and give this one away. I also made a hat called Shroom from Knitty. Its also a free pattern on Knitty. Just search for Shroom hat. Here are pictures of them.
Snowflake hat 

In February of this year I attended the Fiber Retreat hosted by Mary Berry from Fancy Fibers Farm. One of the purchases I made there was 8 oz. of a wool/angora blend. This is 80% Merino top and 20% German Angora fiber. I personally pulled out the fiber, weighed it and gave it to Mary to blend for me on the drum carder. I decided to start spinning this next. My plan is to get a fingerling weight double or triple ply and make a shawl from it.

I'm also doing some "stealth" knitting but more about that later. Currently on the needles (OTN) is still my Stacey Shawl, a cardigan from my handspun brown tones fiber and SOCKS! lol... I recently organized my yarn/fiber stash. I found this sock kit that Edee and I had purchased from the Woolie Ewe  in Plano, TX a while ago. I decided to start knitting it. I'll post what I've done so far and then give you updates... I had to get 00 Addi DPN for this to get the gauge. While I was at the LYS I got 00 Addi lace 40" circulars for toe up two at at time socks cause a lot of times the 0 is too large.
Lorna's Laces in Tree Frog colorway

Isn't it pretty wound up?


Cuff complete on first sock.

Today's progress so far. 

The pattern is actually very simple.  You do a grid pattern for the cuff which is very stretchy and then the first 8 rows set up the diagonal pattern and then its just a simple 2 row repeat for the leg. You do have separate instructions for left and right so the diagonal lace pattern goes opposite directions. There is a YO that makes the lace but you can't see it in the picture. I used Jenny's Stretchy Cast On since these are cuff down. It is really easy and really works. When I do toe up I use Jenny's Surprisingly Stretchy Bind Off to finish the cuff. This link is Cat Bordhi's explanation.

I actually talked about more than 3 things but I hope you don't mind. I'm going to try to post this on Facebook also so please be patient as I try to do that. There are several methods but I'm going to start with the simplest and see how it goes. One day I'll have a Facebook page for this stuff but I think that will wait for a while. I hope you like my updates on my progress. Your feedback is important to me. Let me know how I'm doing!



  1. I love the blog, Michele! I hope this will inspire me to knit more often - and try some new things. I really like that shroom hat! The dye project is beautiful...you have a real talent for that.

  2. Thanks Debby! I do plan to do more dyeing once we get moved. Lots of things are on hold until we get settled in NC. I'm also trying to remember to post links to patterns and such. Glad you enjoyed it.