Wednesday, November 07, 2018

Even a Few Minutes Will Add Up

Time seems to keep slipping by me. My focus lately has been on getting my house in some sort of order since we are hosting my in-laws for Thanksgiving and to be honest if anyone came to the door right now I would hide. Housework just isn't a priority for me, I prefer crafting.
But since I know we will be having people over, I'm trying to get some sort of order from our mess. That means crafting has taken a back seat and I'm finding very little time or inclination to do anything once I'm done for the evening. I'm just too tired.
I have tried to squeeze in just a bit of spinning once in awhile though. Even if it's a few minutes, it slowly adds up to progress. As evidenced by this:

A full bobbin! Yeah! This is some Merino from Gritty Knits that I lost the tag for so I have no clue how long it's been lying around. It seemed very autumny when I started it though and I love the singles, although I'm not a big brown person. I think the red tones are making up for it. I spun it all onto one bobbin so I will eventually chain-ply it but for now it will rest and I will just spin something else since plying requires too much effort when I'm tired from a long day of work then deep cleaning and cooking supper.

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Slacking Spinning

You may have noticed that spinning has been pretty lacking around chez Kalkette. It's true, when all the family stuff happened right at the start of Tour de Fleece, my spinning got put on a very back burner. I tried several times to get back to it but it seemed to be a struggle every time and so I let it go. 
That means I didn't even finish one skein of yarn from the tour this year which is a little hard for me to believe.
I did try to keep plugging away when I could and I finally, finally finished the fiber I started at the beginning of the tour.

It's a braid of Superwash BFL from Freckle Faced Fibers in Guinevere and the colors are washed out here, it's a much deeper, rich purple and green with hints of brown.
I've realized I'm not a big fan of spinning BFL (Blue Faced Leister) so I have either destashed, or spun what I had but I found this braid of Superwash BFL in my stash and decided to keep it and spin it.
The reason I'm not a big fan of it is because I seem to get a really dense yarn and therefore much less yardage than I anticipate which can be frustrating if I have a project in mind. With this being superwash, I thought it was worth it to try once more. I also did everything I could to ensure I got the yarn I wanted. I split the braid and carefully predrafted each piece, taking my time so I could get the results I wanted.
I went into this hoping to knit some handspun socks from this braid and once it was spun and chain-plied, I think I can safely say it's ready to become some lovely socks.

So lovely. The skein has been removed from the Niddy Noddy and washed now so it's ready to go. But check out this little surprise from when I did this photo shoot.

Surprise Bumblebee! It was hanging out drying its wings and I didn't even notice it until I was picking up the Niddy Noddy to head back into the house.
Hopefully this finished skein will help motivate me to get back to the wheel sometimes and enjoy my spinning more.

Thursday, October 11, 2018

Speedy Socks

So far, I have valiantly resisted casting on something new. Except this purse sock.

That's really only because I finished the other purse socks.
I can't believe how fast these are going. I worked on them for less than a day and I was past the heel turn. Of course, after that they got shoved into my purse and ignored for the last several weeks so they aren't too much farther than this. I don't feel like I had that much knitting time over that day either, but they seemed to fly along. Maybe because I'm knitting them on 1s rather than the 0s I was using for the Vesper socks.
I've got a big fiber weekend planned and I'm hoping these will get some more progress. Even though they're the most "boring" of the projects I've packed, I would like to tuck them into the Christmas box so I would like to get them done so they're off my mind.
You'll notice that the photo of these socks is in the nice, sunny grass. It isn't like that anymore. It's been gray and rainy all week and this morning I had to scrape snow and ice off my car before I could drive to work. Not the ideal way to start your day in October. Perfect weekend to have a trip that involves plenty of outdoor time right?
Not so much but I'm going anyway. More on that next week when I'm back and hopefully relaxed and refreshed from an unplugged weekend away.

Wednesday, October 03, 2018

Wolkig in a Handy Set

I keep meaning to get here and post something and then I was having issues with my pictures uploading and the weather has been that sort of rainy gray we get in the fall so I couldn't get any decent pictures anyway. Basically I've been a hot mess lately. But I have been finishing things.

I finished my purse socks which look a little goofy because they're afterthought heel socks. Which means for me they don't sit very nicely when laid flat but they fit your feet just fine. I don't really count purse socks as a project because they just kind of hang out and get worked on whenever until they're done. These actually ended up being afterthought heels, which isn't my favorite heel, because I was out of the house and didn't want to bother trying to knit a heel so I just stuck in some waste yarn and kept going.
I think these will go in the Christmas gift box because I finished them the day this arrived.

A new skein of the exact same yarn. I really enjoyed knitting it and had several family members request the socks so I purchased another skein of the same yarn when it was available. It will likely hang out for awhile though. I'm in no rush to knit the same socks quite so soon.
As a part of my dig-out-and-finish-UFOs project, I also dug out my Wolkig cowl. (I promise it's not this vibrant, it was the light. If you check out my ravelry project page, the picture of the yarn is much more color accurate)

I stopped originally because I decided that rather than using the whole skein for the cowl, I could knit some short little fingerless mitts to match the cowl. But I wasn't sure what pattern to use or how I wanted to do that. I decided it couldn't be that hard to figure something out. So a little finagling and I had these.

Some little fingerless mitts to match. They really don't look like much do they?

Just a bit of twisty knitting. But when I put them on, they're very cute and match the cowl well.

I did decide to make the garter sections twist in the opposite direction because I'm complicated like that. You can read my project page on Ravelry for these mitts to get the directions on how I knit them.
I'm glad I finished them when I did because the weather has turned cooler and much more fall so I'm ready to cozy up with knits.
The UFO bin is looking a little sparse (there are definitely still things in it, just not as many) and I'm not sure if I will continue with the finishing project or start something new because I'm getting the "new project" itch.

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Tropical Bird

I've been having fun digging out old UFOs and working on them. Since they're already partly finished, it makes it quicker to get them done. I finished a few things that need blocking before I share them but in the meantime, I can share something I've been working on that I'm really enjoying.
I fell in love with the Pincha Shawl pattern on Knitty from the first time I saw it, but I tried it in several different yarns and I just couldn't find the right one.
Eventually, they got ripped and the yarn was shoved back into the stash. Finally, I got the idea to try it with some self-striping yarn. I have a good deal of it since I've been in love with Vesper for ages and have been buying it faster than I can knit it. So I chose a skein I knew I wouldn't like as socks but that I thought would be fun as this shawl.
I find the pattern to be pretty fiddly to knit as I have to pay close attention but I absolutely love how it's coming out!

It reminds me of the feathers of a tropical bird. I'm trying to knit one "feather" a day and the original pattern calls for a total of 12 feathers. I will continue if I have more yarn which I'm not sure about at this point. But hopefully, I will be able to dress as a tropical bird in the near future. That should be a nice addition to a winter wardrobe which will combat the dreary gray days nicely.

Thursday, August 30, 2018

Maple Leaf

After the great feeling of accomplishment when I finished my Find Your Fade, I decided to take out another languishing project and get it finished.
I dug around until I found my Maple Leaf Knit Shawl.
Thankfully, I was also able to find the original printed pattern where I had marked every row I had done. So I was able to pick it up again and get going on it.
It wasn't long until I was ready to finish it.
Doesn't look like much right off the needles though.
I should say this isn't directly off the needles. I also wove in the ends. ALL the ends. There were a lot. I had been doing a few as I went along but the end of the last three points led to a total of 25 ends to be woven in. That was not my favorite part!

So I dug out my blocking boards and after a good soak, pinned it to within an inch of its life.

I love blocking, it's like a special kind of magic.
The best part though, is when you get to unpin it and enjoy it!

So pretty and just perfect to finish now as we head into fall.
I'm not entirely thrilled with the gradient but that's my own fault because I decided to use all of the first color and then guessed at where to start the third. But it looks like a colorful leaf so that's what I was going for.

I wonder what other projects I can find to finish.

Thursday, August 23, 2018

Just a Small Hello

2018 Tour de Fleece was a complete bust for me. With all the family things going on, which involved lots of travel, I just didn't get much done.
I literally did not finish one braid of fiber. It's sad but it was what needed to happen this year. Hopefully, I will have a chance to rock the tour next year.
Instead of dwelling on how frustrated I am about not getting any new handspun from this year's tour, I have been in the mood to finish things. It doesn't come around very often, new projects are much more exciting than boring old projects but I dug around in my current UFOs pile and came up with several things I hope to finish.
The first was my Find Your Fade and I'm happy to report that I did finish that. It's huge and cozy and I love it already, although I haven't blocked it or taken any photos yet. I'm very glad I wove in the ends as I went because that meant when I cast off on Sunday afternoon, I had only one end to weave in, the very last one. And I took it to Knit Night. It turned out to be perfect timing because we sat under an air conditioner vent and it was freezing at Knit Night! I was so glad to have my cozy Fade to wrap around me.
There's several other things waiting for my attention and I'm working on a couple of them already so hopefully I will have some lovely new things to show soon.
In the meantime, I thought it was a good idea to at least get a post up to show that I'm still here, still knitting and still planning some cozy fall projects.