Tuesday, January 1, 2013

When Life Gives you Lemons...

We were away* for a few days and the cats had a friend come in to feed them. But apparently they were still upset I had left and Calvin (mug shot below) decided to show me by attacking my amaryllis.

I had been so thrilled when we got home that it hadn't opened it's blossoms yet. I love watching that process, so I was very dissappointed when he ripped 3 blooms off in quick succession. Not willing to give in to the Orange Menace, I found a way to enjoy my blooms, despite his attack.

Looks quite lovely and modern! It's my "lemonade"!

And I finished up the little sample from Moon Song Ranch. Lovely DK weight singles, about 40 yds.

*We spent a few days in Toronto to catch "The Wizard of Oz" at the Ed Mirvish Theatre. It was B's Christmas gift. What a wonderful time. It was so much fun to be able to give her this experience. We had watched CBCs "Over the Rainbow" and had hoped Danielle would win the role of Dorothy from the beginning. We were able to meet Danielle after the show, too. She was such a sweet girl - complimented M on how nicely dressed up he was and chatted with B while she signed her show poster.

Monday, December 31, 2012

Wonderful Christmas Gifts!

G and the kids got me a blending hackle and wool combs for Christmas this year! I was quite thrilled and pleased. He even started his shopping on December 1st rather than waiting until Christmas Eve. The set arrived this past Friday, but I didn't get a chance to play with it until Sunday evening as we had been away for the weekend.

The set he purchased is from Moon Song Ranch.

(Doug, if you'd prefer I remove the photo that I took from the listing in your etsy shop, please let me know. 
Your photo was much better than mine.)

Doug included a little sample package of gorgeous grey alpaca fleece, from their boy Tycho, some wool in a few different colors, some silk and some firestar (or is it angelina - I can never remember which is which) I've been playing with it already and have a few little nests of blended top!

I'm spinning it on my Kundert spindle as a DK weight low twist singles.

I can see this being a lot of fun! I have some farm fresh merino lamb I want to make into combed top next!

Friday, October 5, 2012

White Hot Chocolate

I'm always looking for an alternative to hitting the Tim Horton's drive-thru for my family's favourites. G's fav (other than coffee) is white hot chocolate. We've heard rumblings that Timmies might be discontinuing this hot bevvy. So I hit the kitchen with a likely set of ingredients.

Working from my French Vanilla Powdered Mix as a starting place, I mixed together:

1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup powdered milk
1/3 cup vanilla flavoured coffee whitener

Add 1/4 cup of mix to a large mug and stir in boiling water. Froth the top with your handy dandy frothing tool and you have a Timmies Hack to make you happy.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Zahara - help with ears

I've recently had a question regarding help with grafting the ears closed.

See that cute little ear, and the way the tip of it looks like the knitting just continues right over the tip? That's actually the grafting, otherwise known as the kitchener stitch.

Once you've finished the decreases for the ears you are left with 6 sts. Make sure you have 3 stitches on one dpn and 3 sts on another dpn. Then you would graft the opening closed the way you would the toe of a sock.

Knitty has a good tutorial that may help.

I've also found this YouTube tutorial by KnittingHelp for those of you who prefer your tutorials with moving pictures rather than stills.

Hope this helps!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Dyed Locks

I'm prepping some raw Merino cross fleece for spinning. These locks are not as soft and smooshy as pure Merino, but they have considerable lustre! I'm working out a new colour work pattern for mittens and need several colors.

Into the dye pots (well mason jars, actually) to get two shades of pink, some green, orangey yellow and orange.

These are the same dark pink locks from the first photo, I've separated them and will flick the tips open before I spin them.

The green is actually from a Merino fleece - it's just a small sample. The bulk of the yarn for this particular project will be green and I love how this Merino fleece feels! I wasn't sure how best to obtain the precise green I wanted - hence the sampling.

Here's a few one yard 3ply samples that I spun from various blends of dyed fleece and undyed fleece. My fav is the one second from the left.

I'll also need light brown (sampled above), black and white. The black will be from some Shetland fleece I've recently washed and the white from some Merino lamb leftover from this dyeing project with B.

Incidently, all this fun is for Episode 3 of Project Spinway...

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

An Oddly Shaped piece of knitting

My fuzzy lamb was in need of a little cardigan before he goes off to live with a neice or nephew. After scouring Ravelry for a freebie, I made this:

Odd, no?

But with a bit of seaming magic, we have this:

It's the Mini Corolle Coat found on Ravelry. I used some leftovers from this mitten project for the little cardi.

Looks good on the wee lamb!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Phat Laceweight

I spun like a mad woman for the later part of this week. And had an all day plying marathon on Saturday, but my Phat Laceweight is finished (and I made the check-in for Project Spinway)

The finished yarn is soft, colourful, luxurious, green, jewel toned. The shine from the milk, silk and bamboo takes my breath away. The sparkle makes me smile. The yarn is wildly varied and yet a cohesive whole at the same time. It has turned out just as I’d hoped, but is even more beautiful than I could have wished for.

This is one Honkin’ skein of Phat laceweight!
930 yards, 24 wpi, 6.4 oz

I enjoyed this challenge immensely, despite being pressed for time. I used about two thirds of each Phat Fiber Sample from my check-in picture and about 7/8th of the eXtreme Spinning batt. I intend to spin up the rest of the Phat Samples and the last bit of the eXtreme Spinning batt. I expect to get another 130yds.

I did say I love this yarn, didn't I?

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Lace Weight without Effort

Have I said how much I love my new Thumbelina?! I can spin laceweight on it without any difficulty. It's so much fun.

After sampling a few days ago, I decided to make laceweight yarn with these fibers.

Here's what I have so far.

That's half the eXtreme Spinning batts and about 1/3 of the Phat samples. I need to have my spinning finished for Project Spinway on Saturday, so hopefully I can carve a little more spinning time out of the week. Plying will be for Saturday. I expect it will take a considerable amount of time to ply 50wpi singles!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Fuzzy Lamb

My Fuzzy Mitten Lamb is finished.

I didn't sew the limbs on the way the pattern suggested. I think the photo included with the pattern has sewn them on differently too. I used a mattress stitch to put everything together. (This is a great tutorial for seaming toys)

B suggested he needed a little lamby tail too. I think he might need a little cardigan too. Then he'll be a coated Corriedale! I can't wait until I spin up some white fleece I got this summer. Hopefully it will be enough for another Fuzzy Mitten Lamb.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Lamb Parts

The Fuzzy Mitten Lamb has been the perfect project for the last few days. It takes up very little space and I can work on an arm or a leg while waiting in the van for the kids. I've got most of the parts completed.

Just one more ear, and then I'll sew him up. I'm very pleased with the face. I used plastic safety eyes from 6060 on Etsy and some Knitpicks Palette in "Blush" for the face embroidery.

Fun, Cute and Quick! I think I'll be making more of these.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Lamby Legs

I've just found the cutest lamb pattern ever. Barbara Prime's Fuzzy Mitten Lamb. I love his lamby little face. The pattern is written for knitting flat, but as I'm not a fan of seaming, I'm knitting it in the round.

Look at the little lamby legs! Aren't they just the cutest?

More lamby parts to come!

I'm using some corrie handspun and some of my first handcarded handspun!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Sampling for some spinning

I've got a few things I want to spin together. Two smoothly blended batts from eXtreme Spinning and severl Phat Fiber Samples. Several of my samples are from Phat Fiber artists who also contributed to the Celery Spindies Paintbox. (Sadly Spindies has put their Paintboxes on hold for the time being).
These are the samples yarns I've come up with: laceweight, worsted weight, bulky weight and dk weight.

I think it's pretty cool that 4 completely different yarns can be made from the same fibers. Which one do you like best?