Sunday, 28 February 2016

Exciting times!

When we moved here, plans were to get the bathroom and kitchen renovated. The bathroom turned out great, installed by Rona. The kitchen took a little longer in planning, etc. and we decided to go with Counters Only, as they had more detail in the proposal, plus they had done a refacing reno for us in our previous house 15 years ago. Here are a few before pictures.

The previous owner had coated the countertop with something, and when it got wet, the coating bubbled up and peeled like it had a bad disease. Not healthy and no way to clean it.

And here are the after pictures.

It took only 2 days to rip out the old and install the new, so I still had plenty of time to activate the dye pot. The round of spring retreats and spin-ins begins next weekend.

 Building up stock of Bluefaced Leicester top, superwash.

and adding lots more merino/silk dyed top (80% merino, 20% silk)
a gorgeous handspinning fibre.
I found more hand dyed locks in my spinning stash - beautiful long Border Leicester fleece - which I spun in the lock, and then plied with a thread - 82 yards.
Should make a beautiful cowl knit on 8-10 mm needles.

Kamloops Spin-in March 5, then off to Fibres West in Cloverdale March 18 and 19, a great event that gets bigger every year.
See you around!

Friday, 19 February 2016

On my needles

Right now I have 3 projects on the go, which is usually not my style. But I came to a halt on two of them because my brain could not get around the concept, and I needed to knit something else. So I started this Maryanne's Shawlette with one of my favourite sparkle yarn colourways, Persian Nights.

I was knitting this Multidirectional Diagonal Scarf, (free pattern on Ravelry) but put it down and could not remember how to get the triangle to go the other way. Pause until Knit Night for help, should be finished this week. It is my Rock Your Socks colourway.

My second put down is a pair of socks using the Fish Lips Kiss Heel. I have never knit this before, and decided it was time to try. But I needed guidance as the pattern seemed odd to me. I am carrying on though, and if it doesn't work out, goodbye Fish Lips.

On Ravelry, I am a fan of Rachel Smith (no relation) and her blog and podcasts. She is known as Welford Purls. In the group "the wool n spinning podcast group" she has started a Spin and Knit project thread, where you spin your fibre and then knit it. I chose to spin some merino/nylon pencil rovings that I have dyed, and I am making a sport weight 2-ply yarn. I have only one spinning wheel now, my trusty Louet, and using the technique of lacing the bobbin, I am able to spin a very fine yarn on this wheel.

And this is the vest I am planning on knitting.

With all this going on, I am getting ready for a busy season of fibre events, starting with our very own Spin-In in Kamloops, and then on to Fibres West in Cloverdale (

See you next week.

Saturday, 13 February 2016

Knitting and Dyeing

I finished the shawl that I was working on last week, it is now blocked. This pattern is free on Ravelry, Simply Basic, a one skein shawl.

I found this free pattern on Ravelry, for a different kind of cowl. It is called Summer Cowgirl, and you knit the bottom part, block, sew together at the top, pick up stitches, and knit until you run out of yarn. It is also a one-skein cowl. I knit on 4mm needles, but the next one will be on 3.75 mm. It is out of a skein of Maryanne's Bliss, merino/cashmere/nylon blend.

I found these socks in my stash area, forgot about them. They are a sock blank merino/nylon that I dyed in Vancouver Canucks colours.
And speaking of sock blanks, I dyed several this week. My friend knits the
 blanks for me on her knitting machine, and then I dye them and wind into cakes. If you are making socks, start one from the outside and the other from the centre, and they will be identical.

I am knitting a scarf right now out of my Rock Your Socks colourway. It is a free pattern on Ravelry Multidirectional Diagonal Scarf, the triangles are done with short rows, all garter stitch.

Sunday, 7 February 2016

What's in the dye pot?

This week I have been trying some new dye techniques, and can't wait to start knitting to see how the yarn turned out. I made my skeins extra large, then dyed 2/3 of them royal blue, and then with a squirt bottle, applied colours to the white portion, leaving some white in between. In the skein I used red, yellow and blue, and in the cake I used purple and lime green.
I love how the colours have blended.

I also have a new colourway in my sock yarn, called Opals. Do you see why?

I have a few knitting projects on the go. The first is a cowl called Summer Cowgirl, free on Ravelry. You knit the cowl to this point, block, then join together and cast on stitches at the top edge, and knit for the neck portion.
This is being knit out of a skein of my Maryanne's Bliss, merino wool,
cashmere and nylon.

The next shawl is not yet blocked, so will be almost twice the size when finished. It was knit out of Maryanne's Sparkle, in a failed dyepot. This pattern is called Pretty Basic, another free pattern on Ravelry.
And it is very easy - garter and yarn overs.

And did you ever wonder what to do with those sock yarn leftovers? Here are a couple of projects. The first is Greemy Baby Booties, free pattern on Ravelry. They took 12 grams of yarn. They are my Seattle Seahawks colourway.

Next is a really cute cardigan, which took 70 grams of leftover yarn. It is also a free pattern on Ravelry called Linnie.