Sunday, September 28, 2008

etsy update tonight

All will be available tonight except for the top left corner. I'm keeping this one.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Spinning Pr0n

Well, I ended up drinking the purple kool-aid. I am completely and totally in love with spinning. Knitting around here has slowed to a crawl, although I did knit up a cup cozy for Paul. It was made out of the Platinum Print handspun.

I started virtually shopping for a spinning wheel. I picked up the recent copy of Spin-off magazine and they had an article on wheel comparisons. When I was first thinking about spinning I thought I would just get a Babe wheel due to economic reasons. But after some though I feared I would just be paying a nicer wheel within a few months. So, just make the big purchase. I tried to approach this very logically. I created a spreadsheet with wheel broken down in to price categories. $200 to $300. $300 to $400. $400 to $500. I then listed the items that could be included in a package deal and treadle type. This was much like the article. Then with a check list I checked the ones that would come with 3 or more bobbins. Then checked the ones that included a lazy kate. Then attractiveness. These were things that were important to me. This narrowed the list down to 3 choices, when I had the choices that had all three checked. The Kromski Minstrel, Lendrum Original (complete Kit), and the Ashford Kiwi. None of them even remotely look alike so my attractive category is weird. But I like the looks of each of them for different reason. I then did some research and read customer reviews for each. So, which did I choose?

Kromski Minstrel with the mahogany finish. Oh My! So Purdy! So Sexy! Now, I have read that it might be a little difficult for a beginner to get used to the double drive wheel. I hope that this can be overcome with just a little patients. Oh, and brooklyntweed did not help with his photos of his Kromski Minstrel wheel on his flickr. Okay, I just spent 30mins being totally distracted by his flickr. I actually forgot I was blogging.

More fiber on 1,000 petals.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

The Neglected Garter Stitch

My first stitch learned was the garter stitch. This is probably true for a lot of knitters. The first stitch I teach people is the garter. But, I found that as my skills have advanced my pattern choice has neglected the garter stitch. Why? Did I think it was just a stitch for the newbie? Did I think I was too mature as a knitter to use this basic stitch? I don't know that answer. I do know that as of last night I reaffirmed my love for garter. This is my declaration. No longer will I neglect this stitch. No longer will I poo poo the use of garter in patterns. The garter stitch is freaky faboo. Who was I to point my nose down on this stitch? The revelation came last night when I was viewing the pics on the flickr Garter Stitch group. Such great projects! And not just the baby surprise sweater. Although I did jump right up, grab 3 coordinating colors, and cast that sucker on. Not just the washcloths. 'Course y'all know I just made a butt tone of those recently. There are such lovely shawls, sweaters, and blankets. Inspiration galore. There is also the FLOGS (for the love of garter stitch) group on Ravelry. They have fabulous info, patterns, and pics on that group. My hearts flame for garter stitch has been ignited. Burn Baby Burn!

Monday, September 15, 2008

Platinum Print

This batt turned out so nice. The fuzziness that was bugging me at the start is not an issue any longer. There is very little fuzz. This fiber turned out very soft and shinny. I still have to work on getting the single ply more even. I take time and practice. I am just so impatient with myself.

I haven't knit very much lately. It's all the spinning's fault. I'm still trying to hint and needle my husband into making some more spindles.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

fiber comparisons

Received the batt I ordered from Loop.etsy. Wow. I mean WOW!

So I thought I would write about what I have learned so far about the 3 different rovings I've worked with.

Disclaimer: I have only spun 3 fibers and don't have a lot of experience with roving. But these are my observations so far.

BFL: Seems to be a nice all purpose roving. Took dyes fairly nicely and considering it was my first try at spinning it seemed forgiving and easy to work with. The yarn created was soft has a nice texture. It also didn't shed a lot during the spinning process. I would use this fiber for socks.

Merino/Tencel blend: So soft and silky. I'm glad I didn't try this first. I really had to get used to the slipperiness of it. Took dye very well but due to the tencel some fibers didn't hold as much dye. That is fine though, it makes a nice effect. This fiber also didn't shed much at all. The yarn created is nice and silky and I don't think it will be a fiber I would use for socks.

100% Bamboo: Not done with this spin. But so far it is much more different then I thought it would be. This is a very grippy fiber. But that is not a bad thing. It helps when considering that I am new and it has allowed me to get finer yarn. The spun fiber holds the twist very well. It does shed a lot in the spinning process. Which is fine, just have to use a lint roller. The yarn has fibers sticking out all over. I don't know how I feel about this. I could be my fault. Cope it up to inexperience. It may be a something that happens with bamboo. I don't know. I am concerned that the fibers will itch. I do love the idea that it is more eco friendly and also Florida friendly.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Shop Update

Now carrying roving in my Etsy store. Honestly I think I like dying roving more than yarn. I like the idea that someone can take these and create different types of yarn to suite there own desires and needs. The mosaic above shows two of the 50/50 superwash merino and tencel. They are so soft and smooshy.

Thursday, September 4, 2008


I made yarn. Yippee! I am so excited. It's not the most even, but I'm very happy with the results. I told hubby that I'm gonna have to get another closet sweater organizer just for the fiber/roving stash. Ordered 2 fiber batts from Loop's etsy store. I ordered the Chocolate Liqueur and Platinum Print both 100% bamboo. Sooo purdy. I also received the spindle I ordered from Babe's Fiber Garden. It is pretty nice. The whorls or weight thingys slip a little but I think the leader yarn once tucked in will keep this from happening. Alright...going off to find more fiber.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

I'm Hooked

The spinning bug has bitten. Spinning is so freakin' fun. This weekend I dyed up 2lbs of roving. 1lb of superwash merino and 1lb of merino/tencel blend. Let me tell you the merino/tencel is so soft and purdy. I really want to keep them all but I dyed them for the etsy store. But I did kept the one above and one other that I made for me. Oh, check it out...Paul made the spindle in the above pic. Isn't that just the coolest.

I thought I would share some of the resources that helped me learn to spin and pre-draft and stuff related to spindle spinning.

YouTube videos: Drafting Wool for Spinning, Spinning Yarn on a Drop Spindle, and Finishing Yarn and Wrapping a skein all by Megan LaCore. Also, Drop Spindle basics by Kelley Petkun (the Knit Picks lady). And, Plying with a Spindle which uses the Andean Bracelet method.

So there you have it.