Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Spinning Haze

I'm sorry for the long absence dear readers, last week sort of got away from me. I took what was meant to be a quick trip to see family for Easter. It turned into several more days than I had anticipated and I sort of flamed out on re-entry when I did arrive home.
The trip was great, I got to spend lots of time with my 3 year old niece and a small amount of time with my nephews and other niece but it was exhausting running after small children when I am not used to it and I am still fighting the cold my darling husband lovingly shared with me so I definitely needed the rest I took when I came home. For a couple of days there I barely even touched my knitting or spinning, I was just too tired to pick it up!
Now I'm back and trying desperately to get back into the groove but the dreary April showers we have had the last few days aren't helping. It's just chilly and gray enough that I'd rather tuck myself into bed with a hot cup of tea and a good book than do anything useful. I have found myself looking longingly over at my spinning wheel lately though.
Right after I finished my last spinning project, I decided I wanted to spin something finer than frog's hair again. (I'm really not sure why I do this to myself, I'm so not patient when it comes to actually doing it but I love the idea.) I dug out a lovely braid of fiber that I knew would spin beautifully. Zarzuela's Fibers January 2012 club colorway. It's been marinating in the stash for quite awhile but I just didn't get into the right mindset to spin it until recently. It's a lovely 75% BFL and 25% Silk blend in lovely shaded pinks and purples called January Haze. I think it will make an amazing laceweight but of course it's taking some time to spin.

I think it would really take less time to spin it if I actually spent some time spinning too.

Here you can see how fine the singles are spun and also the lovely shine this fiber has. I can't wait until it's finished yarn. It will be so lovely.
Again, that means I actually need to work on spinning it though, instead of just looking longingly at it. I think it's the name getting to me, January Haze. I've fallen into a Spinning Haze. Maybe? Or maybe not. Either way, it's time to get to work and get some spinning done so I can enjoy the yarn.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Knit Faster

Although I haven't been feeling too much love for the humble hand-knit sock lately, I have been working on my current socks-in-progress here and there. I don't think I even showed these to the blog yet.

Aren't they unusual? I'm not sure about how the colors are swirling down the sock but I love the colors and the yarn is soft, bouncy and wonderful. It's Nebula sock yarn from Ethereal Fibers an 80% Superwash Merino, 10% Cashmere and 10% Nylon blend and the color is Molly Ringworm from her Autocorrect series. This first one is almost at the toe and I honestly can't wait to knit the second one and wear these.
Never fear though, I'm still working away on my Wingspan shawl. I'm at the pink now! That's the last color so I'm getting close.

Honestly, I'm not entirely sure I'll have enough to do two more triangles and the last few edge rows. I'll just keep knitting until I run out I guess. If I knit faster, that means I'll have enough right?

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Winging My Way

I was really trying to be good and not start anything new but last week, after finishing my Noro shawl, my needles felt sort of empty and odd (even though I have plenty of other things on the needles.) Since I was traveling to a conference where I would be in the car for about 2 hours and I wasn't driving, I needed something to knit. I have several plain vanilla socks on the needles but I just haven't been feeling the socks lately. I decided it was all right to cast on something new and I knew just what to knit.
This is really odd for me, I often flounder for several days deciding what pattern to knit with the yarn I'd like to use or what yarn to use with the pattern I'd like to knit. I often don't find a good combination and wander away to knit what's already on my needles.
This time it suddenly popped into my head and it just seemed right. I dug out the handspun Faux Cashmere from Sparktickes Dyes. It's a gradient in the colorway Jesse Pinkman from her Breaking Bad series. I had a lot of fun spinning this unusual fiber but I had had no idea what to do with it once it was spun. Some friends suggested Zuzu's Petals, I went so far as to buy the pattern and I like it a lot and I will knit it. It calls for a lot less yardage than I had though so I was afraid I would have to greatly alter the pattern to knit it with this yarn. Ultimately, I decided on Wingspan. The yardage was much closer to the 420 yards I had. I cast on and started knitting my triangles.

I love it! I love the simplicity of it, it really makes the gradient shine and I'm enjoying watching the color slowly change from one to the next. It's easy to sit down one evening and get at least one triangle knit. I can't wait to get to the pink so I've been knitting it a good amount of time and really enjoying every minute.
It seems maybe I just needed a mindless shawl (with a little interest). Now my needles are much more content to wing their way across this shawl. 

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Noro Finito!

Things have been a little bit crazy here. Last weekend I was traveling and sadly unable to get a whole lot of knitting done. I did get some movie-watching done and some wonderful time with my 3 year old niece. I even got to have a meal with my 17 year old niece. Being seen in public! Quite an accomplishment for a crazy Aunt.
I did manage to finish my Noro Stripes Shawl though. I'm so happy it's done. I had enough yarn to continue for a few more stripes but I wasn't happy with the color combination coming up so I decided to end it.

It hasn't been blocked and the ends aren't woven in yet, like I said things have been busy around here.
I also recently finished the first of my Cursed Cable Mitts.

As you can see, I immediately cast on the second in the hopes I would be encouraged to finish it but as the weather is warming up, I'm thinking these might have to take a short break. They really need good lighting to work on them too and I just haven't had that lately. I need to sit in my kitchen more, I get the afternoon sun there. Here's a close up of the cable.

Even with the better lighting here, you still can't see it very well but trust me, it's lovely. If it wasn't so lovely, I would be tempted to scrap these. I just keep struggling along with that cable. I also haven't woven in the ends on this first mitt. That's odd for me, I usually do that right away with something you knit a mate to but I just haven't taken the time. Hopefully this next week will slow down a bit so I can breathe (and weave in some ends)

Tuesday, April 01, 2014


I'm still feeling some pretty big project ennui so I've really not been working frantically on anything. I do a few rows a day on this Noro shawl I've been working on for a long time and that's about it. It is pretty and springy but the rows are getting long and I'm ready for it to be done.
 It's pretty and stripey but also not very photogenic since it mostly looks like a big stripey blob right now.
See, blob. In case I haven't gone into details before; this is a simple garter stitch shawl knit with two different balls of Noro. Normally, I would use two of the same kind of Noro sock yarn but in this case one is Kureyon (70% wool, 30% Nylon) and one is Taiyo (50% Cotton, 17% Wool, 17% Nylon, 16% Silk) The idea is to knit a simple shawl doing two rows of one color and two rows of the other and watch as the colors meet up and change slowly. The yarn itself does (almost) all the work and the result is lovely.
I'm definitely getting close to the end, the two balls of yarn are getting pretty small but I have several more days work to do. I'll just try to enjoy the colors as I knit since spring has definitely NOT arrived here in Minnesota. We got a dusting of snow again last night.