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Category Archives: Spinning

Tour de Fleece Week 1

Since I have a wheel now I decided it would be fun to participate in Ravelry’s Tour de Fleece, which is a  spinning event that coincides with the the Tour de France.  And it just happened to start at the same time as my vacation so I did lots of spinning this past week.  Here’s one very full bobbin of merino/silk, and I have another well under way.

I also spun in the car on my Bosworth on the way to and from the Cape. It didn’t even make me motion sick, which knitting and reading sometimes do.

I enjoyed my vacation week in Cape Cod tremendously, but its back to work for me now.  Besides I had to come home to get this:

Its a Gripping Yarns Rose spindle in East Indian Rosewood.  It’s beautiful and so delicate.  It’s smaller than I thought it would be, but since I’ve never seen a supported style spindle in person I wasn’t sure what exactly to expect.  I also love the little sample of merino/silk she included from Corgi Hill Farm.  Now I just have to learn how to use it or maybe I’ll just continue to admire it.


Spinning Tuesday: Bells of Ireland

So after sitting around for weeks, I finally washed my green BFL from Corgi Hill Farm.  Isn’t it pretty?  Spun and plied on Lendrum.  I have about 300 yards of DK to Worsted Weight yarn.

Another New Toy

I just go these:

Yep, those are hand carders, which I found used on etsy.  They’re quite old, and at first they turned my wool brown because the teeth were rusty.  But I’ve now worked enough greasy wool through them that the rust has been cleaned out.  Now, I get fluffy white rolags like you see above.

The motivation to buy carders was that I finally decided to do something with this:

That is a whole bunch of wool I was given by an acquaintance with sheep.  He gave it to me a year ago, and I just let it sit around because the thought of processing 3 fleeces was kinda scary.  But now that I have my wheel it actually seems doable, and I’m having experimenting with preparing my own fibers.

Its definitely a different spinning experience, and I’ve been practicing long draw drafting.  My earlier attempts at long draw weren’t all that great.  It just didn’t work well with the fiber I was using.  However, this fleece is suited to woolen spinning with its short downy fibers, and I’ve been having a lot more success with long draw.  It’s a good think I figured out how to spin this stuff because I have a lot more to do.

WIP Wednesday

First, an update on something posted before:

The Corgi Hill BFL is plied. I decided to go for a basic 2 ply, and it looks lovely on the bobbin at least.  Of course it still needs to be skeined and washed but the spinning at least is done.

I also casted on a new projects recently.  (Don’t worry, I’ve finished stuff too but that’s for another day)

The beginnings of a the Beautiful Baby Sweater from 101 Luxury One Skein Wonders, which will be going to one of my co-workers who’s having a baby towards the end of the summer.

Wordless Wednesday

This week’s edition: Things I can do now that the bar exam is over…

(Corriedale Cross in Play Room from Fiber Story on my Spindlewood mini)
(Potholder in Lily Sugar’n Cream)

Read for Fun
(What can I say, I love Jane Austen)

Spinning Ambition

My energy law professors is rather eccentric.  He doesn’t like people to take notes during class and the final is whatever you want it to be.  Seriously, whatever you want it to be from writing a paper to drawing a comic book.  He gives no guidance but encourages students to incorporate something that they’re interested in or good at.  Well clearly for me that means there has to be knitting involved!

I’ve been rather intrigued by our discussions that involve how much oil goes into making something.  For example, it takes a gallon of oil to make a gallon of corn based ethanol.  With all my knitting and sewing I’ve been thinking how much oil goes into making the clothes we wear?  Is making your own clothes an alternative that would use less energy?

As a little experiment I’ve decided to make an item that uses as little energy as possible to make.  I’m doing this mostly by cutting out all the middle men and trans ocean journeys usually involved.  I bought some wool roving from Contented Butterfly Farm in Vermont on etsy that’s from a sheep names Sage.  I plan to spin it, knit it, and do some math to see how much energy I used in this process compared to an item of conventional clothing.  Of course this requires me to spin, something I’m not really experienced in.  However, after a half hour of spinning this morning, I took the picture above and I think its going quite well.  It’s at least not as thick and rope like as my first attempt at spinning.

Also, for an idea of what goes into an item of conventional clothing check out Patagonia’s Footprint Chronicles.  It tracks the average journey of some of the items they make.  I find it fascinating, this is a company that actually makes an effort to be environmentally responsible but a huge amount of resources still goes into every item of new clothing they make.

You’re So Damn Hot

Oh yea, you know its hot. Its Artyarns Royal Silk in color 126. I ordered it during the massive sale that was at a couple weeks ago. It seems to take forever for them to send it out, but I heard they had over 5,000 orders so that’s understandable. This little bit of goodness and joy arrived on Friday and I did the swatch this afternoon. It dried pretty quickly after I blocked it, and this is the result. The gauge is 4 1/2 stitches per inch (18 over 4ins) on 4.5 mm bamboo needles.

It arrived in a very pretty skein that with a bit of time and patience I was able to turn into a cute little ball. The picture of the ball probably represents the color the best, though the swatch shows off the variations in the color very nicely. Its wonderfully soft and delicate. I’m planning on making a shrug for my graduation with it. possibly the one skein wonder, though I would have to adjust the pattern for my gauge. I feel that the fabric would be too loose if I do the recommended gauge of 16sts/4ins. Though I might look around a bit more to see if I find something a bit more gauge apporiabte before I purschase the pattern just to make sure I can’t find something else.

In other news I’m almost done with the body of my SKB. Painfully almost done, like just one more purl ridge almost done. Pictures of that some other time though since I’m feeling a wee bit lazy. I also tired it on. It was a bit tighter than what I was expecting, but I think with blocking I can stretch it out a bit and it’ll be fine.