Experimentation

It’s time for a little experiment.  Mwahahaha…she says with a sinister laugh…

While looking for fiber to spin (a gorgeous bat of merino/bamboo/firestar that was fluffy and gorgeous; it was baby pink and light green with a lot of sparkle) and found a bag of spun balls that were just waiting to be plied. So I spent the day reacquainting myself with plying on a spindle (just about the easiest spinning I’ve ever done),then I got out my new niddy-noddy and now I have a skein of 254 yards of beautiful fingering wt. in an orange and red colorway called “Burning Love”.  I will add pics at the end of my experiment.  I’m so damn proud of this little skein that it’s almost a little ridiculous.

Along with the singles I also found the other half of the combed top that I used to make it.  All of my spindles are full at the moment and I really want to spin this and hence the experiment.  I’m going to spin the other 4.2 oz on my wheel and see what the differences are in the two skeins.  I’m guessing they will be similar but they will be two very distinct lots of yarn.  I really can’t wait to spin this.

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Clapotis Heartbreak…

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This Clapotis is made with my FAVORITE yarn and colorway ever. I fell in love with it 8 years ago. It’s 100% bamboo and the colorway is 7th Heaven. The vendor was Yarntopia or something like that I think. I would, buy a ton more yarn (loved so many of her colorways) if I could just find her again. She also sells a lot of lace – weight tencel yarns as well as blends. Her colorways are always bright and colorful; multi-colored and pretty. If anyone knows who I’m talking about, please let me know.
Back to the Clapotis.  I cast her on 8 years ago. It was when I was still fairly new to knitting and she was my first attempt at a shawl; I was so ambitious but it couldn’t be in the round and it couldn’t be too hard. So Clapotis it was.  I dove in, had a few problems here and there, but fell madly in love as soon as I dropped my first stitch. It hummed along for awhile and then I learned to spin. First the spindle took my attention away from her, then it was Penelope, the spinning wheel. Poor Clapotis got put away in a knitting bag.
Over the following years I would get her out and work on it for a few weeks, getting a decent amount each time.  I got it out for what I swear will be the last time. I’ve been working on it for days. I just started the decrease part of the pattern. Today I discovered that I made a few mistakes that altered the course of the patten. So after trying a few things to fix it, I went with the radical idea to frog the whole thing. I think there was pms involved. But it’s done now. I have 800 yards of perfectly yummy DK bamboo. Any suggestions for a worthy project would be really appreciated.

Spinning the Day Away

I spent the better part of the day prepping and spinning.

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This is Merino that I dyed with my nephew a few months ago. We were going for rainbow and got it, just a little more pastel than I planned. I love it though!
I split the fiber in half and then halved each of them. I’m planning to spin them 2 at a time together, first from pink to purple then back from purple to pink. Then I’ll ply the two singles together. I’m hoping to end up w it a sport to DK weight yarn. This is the first time I’ve tried to plan a yarn from the beginning. Fingers crossed.
Here is what it looked like when I put it up tonight…

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Love the way the soft colors blend together. Can’t wait to knit it.
I’ve also started a scarf for the same nephew using this crazy acrylic yarn I’ve had forever. It’s called TCL Wiggles. It’s loud and garish and gorgeous.

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The Valkyrie yarn is put up until I figure out what will suit it. I would love suggestions for a shawl that can be knit with 2 skeins of Socks That Rock medium weight and that is right for a yarn that needs to be the star of the show.

Total Change of Plans…

Just as I was settling in to the knitting and purling of the Gansey Sock pattern, I get the uncontrollable and completely ridiculous urge to knit for Christmas. Lmao. I am a glutton for punishment. 
Here’s the new list of wips (pictures of yarn, progress etc. to follow):
The Bubble Haze Shawl I’d almost finished. That will be done in time, no problem.
Pinstripe Shawl : Found this gem on Ravelry tonight. Was looking through the color combinations, saw the black w/ pink striping and I knew it had to be knit, inmediately.
Maddy ‘ s Hat: Quick baby sized knit. This will be my first attempt at faire isle.  I’m feeling ambitious.
Brad ‘ s Socks: I have to frog and redo sock #2. The heel went wonky somehow. The problem is that I started these almost three years ago. I want them done and gone, but I dread working on them. I will finish them though.
I need two more relatively quick and easy knits still.  I’m thinking hats and/or fingerless mitts for gaming. Any suggestions for either of these for boys/men would be appreciated.
I also discovered a shawl called Tattered which I will talk about next time. 

Cobweb Lace

First and foremost I have to be a total dork and squee about 14 new followers, this week. Thank you, all of you, for being interested in the things I rattle on about. I hope I will continue to interest you.  Are people more interested in reading strictly about knitting or does a smattering of personal life stories make the blog a little more interesting? Personally I like to feel like I’m getting to know the blogger a little bit better.  I’ve always wondered how other people feel about that. What can I say, lol, I wonder about weird things…
Onto the knitterly goodness.  I’m looking for opinions today.  I was going through my yarn drawers (I really need to do a stash flash) last night. It always cheers me up or calms me down or just makes me happy.  I found myself sitting on the floor fondling my lace weight yarn. It seems to me that there are 2 kinds of lace yarn:  There’s the lace weight that has some substance and feels more like fingering, but it’s finer than that. Then there is the stuff that is SO fine. That’s the yarn I find myself drawn to. I’ve never knit with yarn that fine, but I want to.  I need a 2nd project to work on and I think it needs to be fine lace…after all the Gansey Socks should be my relaxing knit.

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These are the yarns dragging me to the fine side of knitting…lol.

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This is The Great Adirondack Yarn Co.’s Cobwebs in the Pineapple Polly colorway.  It’s 865 yds. of amazing color. I’m in love with it.

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This one is The Alpaca Yarn Co.’s Suri Elegance in the gorgeous Spring Frost colorway. 875 yards of gorgeous.
I’m obsessed now…lol. I’m looking for suggestions for a project worthy of a beautiful cobweb yarn like these. Not a full blown amazing shawl like Shipwreck or Evenstar, not ready for that. I’m looking for something that will give me a taste of working with yarn this fine. My goal, one day, is to complete Shipwreck (I’ve already got the yarn and beads, just not the confidence). Can’t wait to see what you come up with for suggestions. Thanks in advance…

Almost Done and Almost Started

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Here is the MKAL….I’ve started calling it the bubblegum shawl and have no idea why, lol. I’m just starting the 9th repeat of an 18 repeat section and then other than a light blocking it’s ready to be wrapped up for Christmas and put up.  One gift down…actually the only knitted gift unless I get REALLY motivated between now and then.

As I’ve said, I’m on a quest for knowledge. I want to learn (and understand the mechanics of) techniques I use without understanding them as well as completely new techniques. In that spirit I’ve chosen a gansey sock pattern. It’s something I’ve never done, it’s a beautiful pattern that will show off the yarn I’ve chosen (Shibui Knits Sock). The pattern is Diamond Gansey Socks from Socks From the Toe Up by Wendy D. Johnson.  I’m planning to photo document my progress on this project, so here is the first pic of Ancient Coal Ganseys…

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Knitting Epiphanies

I’ve had a knitting epiphany.  I have always been the kind of knitter that follows a pattern exactly as written and never strays from it for design purposes.   Frankly, I think I had/have little to no confidence in my ability to step away from the pattern and try to use what I’ve learned over the years.

That stops now, though.  I was looking for a sock pattern that caught my eye for a particular yarn (Acid and Weed sock) and in the process started looking at the different sock books I have.  Many of which I haven’t looked at since I first bought them, long before I was even ready to knit socks. So I’m reading through the different books and their advice, instruction and explanations for parts of sock knitting and it was like it finally hit me.  I actually UNDERSTOOD parts of the construction and can see a
ETA: I obviously sent before I meant to. The main point though, is that I’m going to spend a lot less time mindlessly saying “ooh…pretty…” and more learning the reason that knitting works like it does. I don’t know that I’ll ever design anything fabulous, or anything at all, but I will understand how design works.