Archive | November, 2014

Yarn!

30 Nov

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Two-ply yarn to be exact! Thick and thin in places (lots of places) but it’s yarn, baby! I thought I was spinning so thin but it probably plied to worsted or bulky weight. I’m so excited! I’m almost out of the Shetland that I brought home so I might have to spin more of the BFL until I can order more. Not having a local yarn store stinks sometimes. I don’t have another lesson for two more weeks so I won’t be traveling down to the shop to buy more. I ordered 8 more ounces in ecru and camel so I can see my twists. I’m trying not to go hog wild with ordering different types of roving. But I really want to!

Today I need to finish laundry, grade programs, and quilt a quilt for my sister. Then DJ goes back to school late this afternoon. No more spinning today…

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Spinning Update

29 Nov

The spinning class went well….I think. It’s hard to tell if I’m making progress or just making bad yarn faster. But I can tell you that it’s lots of fun. And I’m going to need more fiber, fast.

The instructor let me borrow the wheel I liked the best. It’s an Ashford Traveler and it’s awesome.

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I also tried a portable Ashford wheel but didn’t love it.

I’m spinning Shetland wool and it looks good on the bobbin.

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However, it’s got thick and thin spots. I’m trying not to be Ms. Perfectionist and trying to remember that it’s only the first day. But that’s hard.

I’ve learned that I need to relax. The fiber stops fighting you when you stop fighting it. I’ve learned that Shetland is easier to spin than the Blue-faced Leicester that I bought on eBay. The BFL makes some really good rope, but I can’t seem to get it nice and thin like I want. I haven’t tried any other fibers yet. If Shetland is the easiest, then I will spin Shetland til I get the hang of it. I haven’t plied yet. That’s the next class. Or tomorrow depending on how brave I get to try it on my own. Finally, I’ve learned that the wheel I’m using now is a Cadillac compared to my homemade wheel! I find that if I’m not fighting the fiber AND the wheel, I can concentrate on even tension and breathing. Breathing is good….

Projects

29 Nov

I’m still plugging away at the Toe Up Hermoine’s Everyday Socks.

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I hate pooling. I didn’t think this hand dyed yarn would pool, but I was wrong. Ugh! But they are socks and the pooling doesn’t look that bad.

I rarely work on more than one project at a time, but Gianna wanted a bulky scarf so yesterday I went out and bought some bulky Acrylic/Alpaca blend yarn and started a Gap-tastic Cowl for her.

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This is knit on size 13 needles as opposed to size 1 needles for the socks. That’s a huge difference in knitting! Both projects will probably be finished this weekend.

Thanksgiving went okay except for the fact that the kitchen sink and dishwasher drain backed up and flooded my basement with waste water. That wasn’t good. We spent the majority of Thanksgiving night and yesterday cutting into a wall in the basement to reach the pipe that was plugged and then fixing it. Sorting through wet boxes of electronics and fabric and everything else was time consuming. But most of the carpeting was shop vac’ed and is drying now. We will call in people to remove the carpet and flooring and possibly do a whole remodel next month.

Off to my first spinning project this morning! I’ll show you pictures of my progress (and I hope there is progress!)

Yay me!

23 Nov

I found someone to teach me how to spin yarn! She is located an hour away but it’s all 4-lane highway so it should be easy driving. She starts you out with a spindle. I’ve been practicing on the spindle I have but I stink at that kind of spinning as much as I stink at spinning on a wheel. After the first lesson, you move to a spinning wheel. The really cool thing is that she has LOTS of wheels and will lend you one for the week to practice on. I get to try different kinds of wheels because they are set up differently and then I can make an educated purchase (if I so desire and if I can actually learn how to do this spinning thing)!

Spinning has me so perplexed. I have been able to teach myself how to knit, crochet , quilt, you name it. But spinning? I have watched videos, purchased books, read about it on the Internet… But can’t spin anything except thick and thin rope that is kinky in some spots and hardly twisted in others. So, as you can tell, I’m very excited to about this series of lessons that I’m about to embark on!

And… I started another sock.

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I know I said I was going to take a break from knitting for a while. Maybe do a bit of quilting. But, with Thanksgiving coming up and finals two weeks after that, I decided I needed some mindless knitting to calm my nerves and keep my mind occupied. I am knitting a pattern I’ve knit before – Hermoine’s Everyday Socks. I rarely knit a pattern twice because there are so many good patterns out there, so why repeat? But , as I said, these have an easy 4-row pattern and I don’t have to think much to knit them. Why not just knit plain stockinette ? Patterns make me slow down and enjoy the knitting plus give me mini-goals. “I’ll just sit and knit 4 rows”. Then I go do other things. I am knitting these toe up even though the pattern is written cuff down. I like toe up socks better. 😊

On the Homefront, I am in a cleaning frenzy. We are remodeling our family room. I’ve cleaned and organized that room. We have carpet and tile ordered and scheduled to install during the first week of December. I ordered new curtains and don’t like them. They will go in DJs room instead I think.

Yesterday I moved to the kitchen. Gianna and I have been emptying cupboards and cleaning them out. I’m about halfway through that process. Just how many coffee mugs does one family need? Why do we save bottoms with no lids? The garbage cans are filling up with expired food and broken gadgets that have been cluttering up the place. Im spending a fortune on organization containers but it feels good to get a bit organized. I hope to have the kitchen cleaned by Thanksgiving.

25

20 Nov

These socks represent my 25th knitting project for 2014.

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I love how the cables are opposites. These socks were easy-pesky but didn’t get boring because of that tiny cable. Here are the specs:

Pattern: Socks on a plane
Yarn: Huntington by Valley Yarns in gray

I think I’m going to stop knitting for a while and get out my Christmas hand quilting quilt.

More Socks

14 Nov

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Agh…. More gray socks. And boring ones at that. Just one little cable to go up the outside baby toe. All the rest is stockinette stitch. I began a different slip stitch pair but the yarn was not so soft – kind of wooly feeling and I knew I would not like them on my feet. I will possibly make gloves or mittens out of that yarn in the future.

Someone slipped me some crabby pills last night because I woke up angry at the world. I haven’t been able to shake it all day. I hope I just need some good sleep and tomorrow will be rosy.

A Good Day

11 Nov

I had off for Veterans’ Day. I, once again, got a lot accomplished!

1. I cleaned out the linen closet. That makes two closets cleaned this week! Can we make it three? (No)

2. I made a fantastic soup for supper called “Creamy Tomato Basil Tortelini” soup. The recipe can be found here.. It was really good. I picked up some Jimmy John’s day-old bread for fifty cents a loaf and we had a good supper for a very cold day.

3. I finished knitting my gray socks!

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Great pattern that was quick and easy to knit up. I really like the way the pattern showed up on the solid gray yarn.

Pattern: Sunday Swing Socks from Knitty
Yarn: Cascades sock yarn in gray

What will I knit next? I might knit a headband for the winter for me. I might knit a throw pillow for the living room. I might start another pair of gray or black socks. I love finishing because there are so many things in my Ravelry queue to choose from next.