Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Its A Slippery Slope

Welcome back! Ashley and I had a fun day yesterday that culminated in a field trip. I'll be talking about that in the Out for a Spin segment.

In the Bag

I have made some progress on the Tapestry Mr Greenjeans sweater. I am about halfway down the first sleeve. I wasn't happy with the appearance using the DPNs so I ripped it back and am using my #8 16" Addi circular. Its true, at least for me, that your gauge changes in the round vs. back and forth. Apparently my gauge when I'm purling is the culprit. Even though its still a little different with the circular needle I'm happy with it, and the fit is good as I decrease the sleeve. I want this to be a cozy sweater to wear over long sleeve and short sleeve tops so I wanted to be sure the sleeves were roomy. I have about 2" to go on the sleeves before starting the rib/cable pattern that forms the cuff.
I have to admit that I don't usually find myself interested in "fad" knitting. Especially with "fad"yarn. Sorry for the quotes, but that's how it looks in my head. Last post I showed you a poorly composed picture of my Favorite MIL's pink ruffled scarf. It was knit from Starbella Yarn by Premier Yarns. That is the "fad" yarn I'm speaking of. Its a net yarn with a selvage edge that you knit or crochet through the top row of holes. Its really very cute and and trendy! My friend Colleen who owns my LYS Make it with Yarn gave me a skein of Joy Metallic yarn by Plymouth. Its the same type of yarn that has sparkle in it. This was a damaged skein and I asked to try it out. I guess I can say its turned into my guilty pleasure. Its so easy to do. I started my scarf at the Superbowl kick off and finished it just before the Ravens were awarded the Vince Lombardy Trophy. 
When I gave Dina, my SIL, the pink scarf to take to her mom she really liked it. I told her I would make her a scarf but she had to pick out her own yarn. She picked out 3! Here is the start of the first one. 
I've also been working on dishcloths for my kitchen. I love cotton knitted dishcloths but I've learned not to bother matching colors to kitchen colors cause I bleach them every time I wash them. I found some kitchen cotton that is white with flecks of blue and green in it. It looks cute but doesn't bother me when the colors fade from bleach. I also don't want to take a lot of time making them with fancy patterns. On Sunday afternoon, yes before starting the scarf at kickoff, I cast on 35 stitches with #6 Chiao Goo circular needles and knit in seed stitch until it was square and then cast off. I should get at least 6 cloths out of the cone of yarn. 

I've made some progress on my Hitchhiker Shawl. I'm up to 20 teeth. That is about halfway done. Loving the color, texture and feel of this. It will be a favorite when done. 
I'm also keeping up with my Weather Scarf. I have 3 days to add to this but its completed through Saturday. Yes I have some ends to weave in.... :)

On the Drying Rack/Knitmeter Update

I haven't finished anything other than the Blue Green Ruffled Scarf. That one and the Pink one were 33 yards each so I've added 66 yards to my Knitmeter. 

Up and Coming

I am still planning the Holden Shawl, Cabled Preppy Cowl and some fingerless mitts but I wanted to show you my new addition to the Up and Coming segment, and the inspiration for the title of my blog post today. Some of you already know that my daughter, Katie, is expecting a baby. This will be #3 for her and our 11th grandchild. I've been planning some knitting, its a slippery slope!, but didn't want to buy yarn until I knew the sex of the baby. Last week she had an ultrasound and it showed that she was having a girl. This is good for all concerned because although she loves her boys.... she really wanted a girl. And Grams wanted to knit girly things.... So I've started to to look at yarn and made decisions on what to make. Yesterday when Ashley and I were on our Fiber Day Out we started out in Downtown Asheville. One of the stops we made was at Purl's Yarn Emporium on Wall Street. This was totally a spontaneous purchase. I saw a baby/kids hat that was so cute, and the yarn was rolled in a gradient looking ball and I saw a perfect color way. It is Be Sweet Bambino Taffy in the Candy Sprinkles color way. It is 100 yards of 70% organically grown cotton and 30% bamboo. I wound it into a center pull ball on my ball winder to reverse the colors so that as I pulled from the center it would start with the hot pink. I have one complaint, the color changes are achieved by knotting the yarn. I don't like knots. But so be it. Its probably the only time I will use this yarn. The pattern is on the ball band and its on Ravelry also, the Sweetie Pie Hat. This will be another learning experience since it uses a provisional cast on and I've never done that. 
As it came, isn't it beautiful?

After I re-wound it. Since the white is on the outside I put a yarn cozy on it to protect the white.

This is the hat in the Candy Sprinkles color way, picture borrowed from Ravelry

Out for a Spin

Have I said I love my WooLee Winder???? Well I do! At Roc Day spin group I carded some batts of Alpaca, wool and dyed mohair locks. 

I had talked about this before, but I spun it up last week. I had 11.65 oz so I split it into 3 and spun the singles on my WW in a thick and thin process. This was totally based on how the fiber seemed to want to be spun. I believe in listening to my fiber. 
I spun up my 3 bobbins lickety split on the WW...
Then I plied them using the Freedom Flyer for my Joy. Since I knew this would be a bulky yarn I used the Freedom Flyer and got about 2/3 of it on the first bobbin and then plied the rest resulting in 2 skeins. I have a total of 103 yards. 
Yes, that is Molly in the background...

This is sooooo soft and cozy. I'll be looking for a pattern to use but I'll be making a cowl from this. 

As I said at the top, Ashley and I had a field trip. We had a Fiber Day Out yesterday and visited 3 shops in Asheville, one in Hendersonville and ended up at Hidaway Farms. As a little background, Ashley found a group on Facebook called Spin a Pound, Get a Pound or as I like to call it SAP GAP. LOL.... basically its a way to connect fiber farmers with spinners to get their fiber spun. It is an international group as there are people from Canada on there. Actually, one of my fiber farmer friends, Cindy Telisak from Jacob's Reward Farm is on there! Ashley connected with Christine at Hidaway Farms who is right here in Hendersonville. Christine and her daughter Katie raise Shetland Sheep and are adding Icelandic Sheep to their flock. We picked up some fiber to spin for them and its a 50/50 split so we keep half of what we brought home. A great way to add to my fiber stash. I got a couple of pounds of brown and cream fiber from Charlotte and Butterscotch and about a pound of cream fiber from Camille that is first cut lambswool. She is giving us free range to spin, dye, ply as we want. 

Ashley also got cream fiber as well as gray and cream. We will trade some of our two color fiber so we have some of both color ways.

After we talked about our spinning background and showed our handspun samples and decided on how much fiber we would start with we went out to see the sheep. Ashley took a few pics for me after I asked permission to use them on the blog. 

This is in the pasture of ewes that have been bred. They are expecting as many as 11 ewes to lamb this spring. Some of them are definitely getting round. Ashley and I are hoping to make a visit for lambing and/or shearing. We had a great time, thanks Christine and Katie. 

Mindless Nattering

I've been thinking about the way that I use social media and how it connects me to the fiber community.   I am able to stay connected to my friends and family even though I have moved away as well as connect with my new friends and family here in this beautiful part of North Carolina. I can share my new surroundings with everyone as well.  But I also use pictures, Facebook, Ravelry, Plurk, Twitter etc as a way to keep track of things. Its how I can keep a journal of sorts of my life. Life goes so fast and its hard to keep track. I am also using this blog to track my fiber journey. So there are times when its going to be longer or with more pictures than other times. For anyone who is reading this, I hope you understand that the first reason I do this is as a journal. The second reason is to share my journey with anyone who is interested. So there may be a lot of pictures or a long post. I hope you don't mind. 

That's it for this time. I hope you have enjoyed my post. Please remember to make the most of every day. Life is short... 

See you next time!

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