Silverleaf

I’ve been working on and off on Silverleaf all month. Friday I finally got at it and finished up the last 40 or so rows and made the bind off. I haphazardly blocked it before picking up the kids from school. I waited to sew in the ends until last night and I’m glad to have a shawl in a summery yarn, Cascade Sunseeker- a cotton yarn with a single shimmery tinsel ply. 

I’ve gotten to the point where I’m preferential with my weaving in ends after blocking as opposed to before. I don’t know why but it seems to be easier/cleaner looking and all around less stressful. 

This shawl was a bit of a challenge keeping track of the rows and stitch count overall. There was lots of frogging and reknitting. 

(Eta: the whole paragraph that apparently got deleted in the picture upload process)

I took a short break from knitting and decided to do a bit of dyeing. It’s been a while since I’ve hit the dye pots and I managed to land me some silk/rayon blend for a sweater but the catch is I needed to use fiber reactive dyes on it per the ratio of fibers. The silk is unknown but the rayon is from bamboo. Slowly I worked out a steely blue color, but once rinsed it changed colors.

It went to a very light greenish gray. I ended up overdyeing it multiple times until I got something I considered reasonably pretty.

The merino was only too easy. I managed to get a brand new dedicated dyeing crock pot for $20 at target and had to test it out.

(I have no idea how to turn that picture around lol )

Anyways, I think I have my winter knitting all set up and I’ll be busy when the colder weather hits. If only fall would get here quicker. At least September is right around the corner.

A bit of dyeing

It seems as though the busier I get the more I long to do other things and start cramming a ton more into the schedule. I recieved a pound of merino and a pound of cheviot a couple weeks ago. I had plans for the cheviot making dryer balls, but nothing for the merino. When I finally got a free day I ended up dying the roving in the oven. It was a first with oven dying. The results were great but because I didn’t put enough to dye through to the other side in spots, some of them really annoy me even though they have areas left intentionally undyed. Now that I’ve learned a thing or two about this, I think that next time I’ll be more prepared. I loved how they didn’t bleed one bit, not even my toughest colors.

image

My favorite ended up being the one with a bit of
yellow.

image

The colors turned out really pretty and spring like. Naturally I had to spin that one first.

image

It’s been a while since I’ve been super thrilled to do anything fiber related. I’ve been tempted to put all knitting on hiatus for a bit. Spinning on the other hand is something I would do more if my hands would cooperate, being a bit on the arthritic side doesn’t help.

So in between projects that I’m avoiding I made a hat, but haven’t blocked it. It’s the kind of pattern that would show up well on a single colored yarn, but harder to see with a self striping or variegated. The pattern is Tombreck and it is a simplistic looking hat with a long repeat pattern.

image

It’s a bit hard to see the pattern in all that neon, but it’s a nice loose, comfy hat.

Last night I learned how to make bread from scratch. That was quite an adventure. It was messy, tiresome and the outcome was edible. I decided on a simple potato bread recipe, which ingredient-wise it may have seemed simple, but it was a very long process with several steps that the cookbook seemed to combine into each step. So there was lots of double checking and a skipped 10 minute rise period. I nearly over proved it because I set it in the oven which happened to still be warm from dinner an hour and a half earlier.

image

image

image

Even my daughter had to have a few slices before bed because it was a nice change.

I’ve been looking through this modernized cookbook we acquired from the holidays and challenged myself to make a few things this week.

Let me tell you a few things: 1) I’m not a planner, and have never meal planned, 2) I’m a picky eater-which is why I don’t cook or make things often that don’t come out of a box, 3) I’m not the only picky eater so it’s easier to have separate meals for the kids, the hubby and I, 4) I don’t own much in the way of baking and cooking supplies other than the basics, which makes things complicated and easier to just not do. So this really is a challenge to push myself outside of a lot of these habits, bounderies, and excuses. So one down, 3 more to go by the end of the week. I’m almost too excited for this.

3/4 of an inch and sleeves

Still dragging my butt on the shirt. I have no excuse. I’ve worked a few rows here and there hoping it would add up. Still 3/4 of an inch to go, and I’m going bonkers and running out of yarn. Yarn chicken anyone? I spun a few singles the other night and plied them and they worked up beautifully in a teal/purple/pink color change. The colors were impossible to photograph as true. I tried filters and natural light but no luck.

image

I might have been distracted by that dastardly loom again too…

image

image

image

A nice warm wool weft/ polyester warp scarf. I’ve tried fulling it a bit, but I fear I’ll have to do a second round and have more color bleeding.  Sometimes mordants just don’t work.

Hooray for not posting

So my phone and the app decided not to post my last post. Anyways. I finished the socks. Didn’t get a picture of both finished.

image

I managed to find a loom, use a discount coupon and birthday money to get a 32 inch Kromski Harp for under $100. I hate waiting for it to get here. In the mean time my current wip is the Playground Shirt on Ravelry.

image

image

Pardon my messy desk.
I also decided to spin some more of my hand dyed roving that had a rinsing mishap and felted a little. I was able to get 226 yards 2 ply lace weight.

image

image

This roving has been a pain from the beginning with the dye not taking as well with some colors, I had a hard time drafting it too. Eventually I got into a rythm, and then my kids messed with my wheel and lost the end. I had to start a new bobbin while I contemplated spending the time to find the end. I never did, but I might mess with it later just so I can have my bobbin back. Time to knit and relax!

summer slump already?!

20140617_114030

I have so many little things going on lately, that I’ve totally fallen into the “I don’t wanna” mentality. I got stuck on a 2 1/2 hour phone call yesterday while I was in the middle of trying to get some more of my cotton/merino blend yarn measured out. (So much for getting any of that done!) After the call I started making lists, because I had so much on my brain. My mental list is split up into business, home/family, and fiber arts. Well… haha. These lists are all a mile long or so they seem to be. One of my kids ended up with some sort of allergic reaction, and I spent the morning at urgent care. This week hasn’t seen much hard work, and mentally I haven’t even been able to focus because I have chronic migraines and children. Hopefully the few things I have started prepping for the shop, since we finally have some nice weather for photographing, will be going up soon.20140617_11182820140617_11343720140617_112301

dreary weather leads to more work

Since I can’t escape my work and play outside with the kids, I have been dyeing. I can’t seem to stop. I’m skeining and dyeing with not much motivation to do anything outside of that. I’ve tried, with many false starts, to get a project started. The fiber was uninspiring and the migraines I’ve had lately have kept me from being productive outside of work. So I will show you some of what I have managed to get done. (of course the sun decided to peek out when I went to take pictures)

ImageImage

Image