Tuesday, 30 December 2014

What have I been up to lately?

After the rush and craziness of winter and Christmas events and sales, it was time to slow down and relax. 

I have been saving odds and ends from dye projects, and samples received, and it was time to start playing with the drum carder. I can get about 70 grams of fibre on this home made carder, which usually works out to about 50-70 yards of handspun yarn, all one-of-a-kind skeins. 
They are enough to make a cozy hat or headband.

A customer of mine has been knitting a blanket out of my thick and thin handspun merino yarn, and with the yarn left over, I made a couple of cozy cowls, to be worn either as a fashion statement or a double wrapped neck warmer. Pattern is with 10 mm needles, cast on 20 stitches. Knit 4 rows, then next row K1, P1 across. Next row P1, K1 across and repeat these 2 rows for 8 rows. Knit 4 rows, then K1, P1 and P1, K1 and repeat these 2 rows for 16 rows. Continue in this manner until only enough yarn left to knit last 4 rows and cast off, join ends.

What to do with leftover sock yarn? This Russian ring pattern used about 100 yards of each colour. The rings intertwine with each other. Easy - cast on 100 stitches with 4 mm circular needle, join in ring without twisting, knit 5 inches, cast off and weave in ends. Next colour, make sure needle goes through the ring already completed, do the same. Next colour, make sure needle goes through both rings already completed, do the same. You can make this as big as you want by knitting more inches, 
or adding more rings..

This is a real cute pattern courtesy of Anne at Kelowna Yarn and Crafts, www.kelyarn.com, using only one skein of Smith and Ewe sock or fingering yarn. This is the sparkle Deep Cove colourway.

And in my stash I had a package of merino/alpaca roving, and quite a few yards of hand dyed silk hankies that I had spun at a retreat. I spun the merino/alpaca, and plied the two yarns together to make a very luxurious blend, 
and knit it into a mobius scarf. 

I am now tackling a knit-along challenge put out by my knitting group, the Needlemaniacs. It is the Madrona scarf, lace pattern with beads. One of my customers asked me to dye a yarn using greys and yellows. The end result was not too pleasing, but once I accepted this challenge, I guarantee the end result will be a keeper, using this failed experiment at dyeing. Watch for it!


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