Tag Archive for 'handspun'

Spin and Knit

Bri of TheCraftBegins recently posted and shared this scarf that she made from my handspun yarn she purchased.

I wish I had a picture of the original fiber, unspun, but on the left you can see I have a picture of the single ply, the double ply, on the knitty knoddy and in skein form. Here is her post!

I am just thrilled to see such a beautiful finished product, that in a way I had a hand in as well. She did such beautiful work, AND she created the pattern for it as well! She has several other beautiful and equally warm and cozy knits in her Etsy shop.

a new yarn

I made this yarn over the last few days. It’s 68 soft yards in length.

It uses a tiny bit of fiber I had left over from the most beautiful fiber I think I’ve ever purchased. I’m sad to see it all gone. I’m not even sure what kind of wool it was other than I bought it here and it has the most beautiful colors and is so soft to touch. With such a small portion remaining I decided to make a very fine yarn and extend the fiber as far as I could, plying it with a wonderful white Blue Face Leicester. There are so many colors in the first fiber, I think the white works wonderfully showcasing them all.

Here is the other yarn made using some of the same fiber. I striped this one with white and then plied it with a black cotton string.

As I mentioned in a previous post there was a knitalong for making tall socks with handspun yarn and I wanted to see if I would be able to make a yarn thin enough to be sock yarn. I have a tendency to spin thin, naturally, but have you seen sock yarn?!?! It’s SO thin! Well, when I showed this complete yarn to Matt he said “it’s like thread” so I will take that as a positive. Maybe I will be able to make my very first socks with my very own handspun someday :)

Tada!

Another handspun yarn done!

This was one of those nightmare fibers I spoke of yesterday, one I purchased based purely on the beautiful colors. And the colors are lovely, aren’t they? Very Autumn. In fact the fiber is a very itchy, wiry one that would not work well against the skin.

What else could you knit with this yarn that you wouldn’t wear?

Yarn Destash

I finished spinning and plying this yarn last night. You might recall it from a few posts back when I posted some poorly photographed progress pictures.

Last year, or earlier this year, I promised myself not to buy any new fiber until I spun up everything I already had. This is an attempt to prevent my collection growing out of control like my current store bought yarn situation.

I’m excited because I’m getting close to the end of the collection. When I first started spinning (2004) I would impulsively buy rovings based purely on colors. When I’d get home and try to spin them, I’d often find the colors didn’t suit me after all, or the fibers were troublesome, scratchy, nubby, riddled with vegetable matter, and/or over dyed/partially felted. Immediately I’d stick them on the shelf and not even want to look at them again.

The case with the fiber above was more of a color issue. Green is my favorite color and I LOVE LOVE LOVE the green and red color combination. They’re called complimentary colors, but I rather like to think of them as competitors, fighting for which one makes more of an impact. It wasn’t until I got it home that it struck me “oh no, Christmas colors”. You will never know how many times this has happened to me, where I create something that I love and only once it’s finished and I’m happily admiring my work that it occurs to me “Christmas!” and instantly I am repulsed by it. It’s not that I don’t like Christmas, it’s just that I have an aversion to my work resembling Christmas craft/decorations.

Well, now enough time and experience has passed that I know a better fiber when I see it. From now on I’d like to keep better track of what breed all my fibers are actually from for selling purposes. I’d also like to think I have a better eye for color and have learned that a more blueish green or teal-y color and red still create the same impact that green and red do, but without the negative connotations. AND lastly, I want to buy a ton of fiber because I’ve had this project in mind for a couple years, to spin enough yarn to make a simple vest for myself. I mentioned it first in this post.

One last bit of fiber inspiration: Yesterday I saw a tweet post by knittydirtygirl where she is starting a knitalong project on Ravelry to make knee high socks, toe up, from handspun yarn. Here is the yarn she will be using. Dare I say it, but after the vest project I’d like to tackle that one. I’ve never made socks before, not for lack of trying though. I think I will need some guidance from my sister, the sock knitting expert.

Still sniffling over here

I’ve decided to participate in NaBloPoMo for January, which means I will blog daily for the whole month. Last February I had such a great experience blogging daily over at Thing A Day, so I’ll probably do that as well, which means, blogging daily for two straight months, woah! But, for now during NaBloPoMo, if you don’t see a new post here, it might be because I posted over at the Every Day Create group blog or the Makers group blog, but I will definitely post somewhere.

I have a couple things to share today.

Above is one of my mail art pieces that was up at my show last month. I’m excited to finally share the pieces online. Some might be added to my etsy shop, so check in there ocassionally.

My friend Kelly made this awesome wrap using some of my handspun yarn. I had given her the yarn as a ‘new mom’ gift, and being a knitter/crocheter, I knew she would get use out of it. How exciting, to see what someone has made with my yarn. I think of this quote that I have blogged about before by Lexi Boeger “Handspun yarn is more than simply yarn…Every Inch has been fed through the hand of the craftsperson…Each yarn is a reflection of the individual spinner who made it. It is this quality that makes handspun yarn so amazing to work with. As you work through a skein, you can see, inch by inch, the decisions that the spinner made. It passes before you just like a story.” And the same can be said for handknit items as well, so Kelly’s work with my yarn should tell twice as much.

Lastly, a kind of update and announcement about my friend Nikki who has been fighting? no, Battling? no, let’s say “DESTROYING” cancer, has been told she is in remission. After a long series of intense chemo treatments starting last summer and ending in December, she has kicked that cancer’s ass. As she is planning her formal wedding this summer, she entered an essay contest about whose “Love Rocks” the most and was nominiated in the top three. Please go to this site, read the stories and vote for her and my friend Tom’s story. I think you will agree, it is the most touching, but also the best written and composed essay.

Okay, that’s all for tonight. Good night everyone.

Homespun from hell

This weekend I hit up 3 fiber shops in one day with my friend Mary Kay. That has to be some sort of record.

Now I am on a mission to get the absolute worst yarn (above) done before I allow myself to dive into the luxurious fibers I just bought. I have this box full of horrible wirey, course fiber that I had bought when learning how to spin. I dyed it all with kool-aid when I first started dyeing stuff and it is all mostly bright kool-aid colors, not mixed, but just straight from the packet, cherry red, lime green, blue raspberry, orange, etc. That wouldn’t be so horrible if it weren’t for the texture, and the fact that when dyeing the wool I often felted it, AND it is out of control with nubs AND vegetable matter. I’ve finished about a bobbin and a half and it has taken me foreverrrrrrrr. I just want to be done with it. Honestly, I think it will look really cool because it is just about the same thing as this, but it just doesn’t feel as wonderful as it looks. It will be good to destash this monster pile of fiber, in perfect time for the move. Now if only I could do something about my 2+ tall laundry bins full of yarn (not handspun). Can we say garage sale?