Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Twisted

I promised a pic of my handspun, so..... tada! Not a very good photo, but it will have to do. It's miserably dreary, so I couldn't get very good lighting. In real life the color is actually a very vibrant blue, purple, and turquoise. Pretty stuff :)

off to do more spinning!

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Whirling Round and Round

Spinning spinning spinning......
I'm totally lovin' it! My drop spindle kit from Maine Woods Yarn came probably almost two weeks ago now. (I've completely lost track of time.) Prior to getting it I had been doing my darndest to spin using a clunky old Ashford spindle that has been hibernating in my house since the beginning of time when my dad gave it to my mom. The thing was seriously clumsy and I was really questioning my desire to spin. I guess the Ashford was intended to be either a top or bottom whorl. Not 100% sure on that, but there was a little notch on either end of the shaft part that perhaps was suppose to take the place of the hook. Like I said, I really have no clue. The point of the matter was that I couldn't make it work in the slightest. When the new one came I was amazed at the different feel of the spindle. The new Maine Woods spindle was much lighter and had an overall cleaner looking appearance.

The kit came with 4.5 ounces of different color rovings; 1 natural white for practice, deep blue, violet, and a last roll with a turquoise background and violet and blue painted on called Biloxi blues. (For anyone that's interested, the kits do come in several different colorways.) I practiced on the natural roving first. Let me just say it was not pretty. I haven't been able to force myself into taking a photo and actually letting people see this first attempt yet. Yeah. It looks like pile of grubs or something.

I did manage to get the leader yarn attached to the spindle and start. My problem was the drafting. Could figure it out, so the singles were large, lumpy, overspun in parts and underspun in others. Eventually I figured out predrafting and park and draft methods, both of these things made spinning a lot less frustrating. Once the natural grub yarn was done I wound it around a chair and set the twist. Ha! Overall it was a fun ;earning experience.

My second attempt at spinning went much better. I spun through all of the blue roving and kept it pretty consistent. I'm guessing that the single came out on the heavier side of fingering weight. A HUGE improvement from the bulky grubs. Now I'm working on spinning the multicolor roving with the hopes of plying it with the blue. We'll see. Hopefully when that's done I'll take some pics to post. :)

Thursday, January 17, 2008

With a Song in Your Heart (PATTERN)

New pattern up and ready to go!

I gave the scarflette a rather long name..... "With a Song in Your Heart." My intention was to name each one made in the pattern after a different song or musical style. The gray scarf in the photo was named "Symphony" and is up in my Etsy shop: The Knitted Fiddle Boutique.


*Ravelry sers get the free pattern HERE

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Spindles!

I ordered a drop spindle today! Yay! Can't wait for it to come so I can get myself frustrated beyond belief. :) Hopefully I'll figure it out. I'm not quite certain on that, though. In my mind drop spindle spinning doesn't make much sense. I can see how a spinning wheel works, but the concept of a drop spindle actually producing something is another matter entirely. Of course, I know it's possible. I've seen what can be made on Ravelry groups. Truly awe inspiring. Also, one of the ladies in my local knitting group does spindle work, so I've witnessed the process in person (and I have someone I can ask for help, which I'm probably definitely going to need to do).

Eventually I'd like to get myself a spinning wheel. The smaller, more portable ones seem very appealing. They're just so darn expensive! No way I'm going to afford something like that. I'd need to sell the stock in all three of my Etsy stores. lol

My hope, or perhaps I should say goal, is to make my own yarn to knit with. In the end I'll be happy with any means of creating yarn that I can manage. And then there's dying yarns...... One thing at a time, however. I'm thinking the dying idea is going to have to wait until I move out. I can just see my mom having a fit if I managed to dye parts of the house accidentally...... yeah. Not good. Not good at all. lol :)

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Beach Glass

It's for real.... Dad's on Etsy......
As of last Sunday (I think that was the day) Dad has his own Etsy shop: www.BeachGlassJewelry.etsy.com. That makes 4 Etsy shops that belong to the family now. Three of them are mine..... yeah. Crazy. Etsy domination. It's really an awesome site. I think I found some of the best Christmas gifts ever this year because I had signed up. It opened a whole new world of ideas and inspiration. It connects you to people that you never would have met otherwise as well. For instance Jackie of DogDaisy92. Her embroidery work is beautiful and she's also a sweet person. We've had an e-mail exchange going back and forth for a few months. She's from England and it turned out that she looked up our band (The Homegrown String Band) and saw us dancing and her husband was part of a traditional English dance troupe. That's would be the roots of the American clog dance, or flat footing, that is part of the HGSB shows.

Anyway, back to where I had started.....
Dad's has his own Etsy shop. He's making wire wrapped pendant out of the beach glass he's been collecting from the beach by our house. 100% natural glass harvested from the rocky north shore of Long Island. Has a nice sound doesn't it? The shop definitely needs some promoting, so we'll see how it goes.

Happy New Year everyone! :)





Etsy: Your place to buy & sell all things handmade
BeachGlassJewelry.etsy.com