I will fix that sock… eventually.
But this weekend and most of next week is devoted to putting a display together for next week’s party/show—having never done this before I’m really not sure what to expect or how to plan. But I know I want to do something a little different from the usual spindles in cups routine; I’ll probably have a couple of those but I want to make a bigger visual impact than that. Hopefully this giant display… thing (I don’t even know what to call it!) will go a long way in drawing interest in, with spindles hanging from it and lots of happy, bright bumps of test fiber hanging out both on top and down below.
I’m also going to try to find an in-person copy of Yarn Forward #14 (although it may not have made it across the pond yet) so I can put this up:
How cool is that? :)
So there I was, knitting along at my local knit night (which should be your first sign of trouble—never knit at knit night), chatting away while trying to get some of the second Bex sock done.
Now, look, I don’t want to sound full of myself, but I think at this point I’m a pretty good knitter. An accomplished knitter. A talented knitter. A blue ribbon winning knitter. So I can handle some complex cables while talking, right? No big deal, chat chat chat, cable cable, knit knit, I can handle this. And lo and behold, by the end of the night, I’ve made some pretty good progress! (Well, okay, I’ve managed a half an inch in four hours. But once I went to knit night and only got through two rows, so trust me, this is plenty of progress.) Then last night I went to pull out the sock to keep on going, and…
Can’t see it? Here, try this:
Okay, so Rhinebeck is always a good time, and MDSW was epic, but I gotta say, small sheep and wool shows are totally where it’s at. Space to move around? Win. Time to see it all and hang out in just one day? Win. Not feeling totally rushed to run hither and yon to this meetup and that fleece sale and those vendors and oh look it’s time to leave? Win.
Seeing a lovely wheel complete with gnome attachment:
(Dan and I have matching sunburn stripes on our hands and arms thanks to spinning in the sun for too long)
Plenty of loot to be had as well, including (but, ahem, not limited to) a tsock batt from the woman herself:
(which isn’t really a tsock batt as it will be turned into laceweight, but tlace batt just doesn’t have the same ring to it.)
Here’s hoping that one pound is enough for a sweater! (Or that someone reading can tell me who the hell makes it, as the vendor didn’t know and didn’t have anymore. It’s corriedale top, mostly blue with various heathery yellow, green, and red threads through it.)
Some of you who may know me from Ravelry (particularly from the Completely Pointless and Arbitrary Group group) may have noticed that I have a certain fondness for a certain image macro.
see more Lolcats and funny pictures
Cracks me up every time.
(Er, that’s a scrap of alpaca fiber—strangely enough I couldn’t find any miniature ducks.)
Pattern: Little Giraffe by Christine Landry
Yarn: unidentified superwash fingering wt wool, yellow and brown
Needles: US0/2mm Addi Turbos
Notes: There are some better (more intricate and detailed) giraffe patterns out there, but this one was free and fast, and also has the benefit of being easily adjustable to any gauge, so my tiny giraffe is perfectly keychained sized. I shortened the legs and also kind of winged the head and the ears, as the original instructions were kind of strange. Please ignore my awfully wonky stranded knitting skills—it’s hard to strand on only 16 stitches in the round!
Find the shun giraffe here on Ravelry!
You know, when a pattern designer tells you to use a certain size needle, you should probably listen. Or at least take it into account. Don’t do what I did and go down two needle sizes “because I have small feet! And I knit all my other socks on US1.5s and they all come out fine.” Really. That’s what I said. And now I have most of a sock that fits perfectly… over my hand.
Since I am too much of a wimp to rip out an entire sock that is still perfectly usable, I’ll finish the pair and send them off to someone with even smaller feet than I.
Spindles, get your spindles!
I’m putting up a ton of new stock in the store this weekend, all of which are the result of the spindle-making spree I went on this week, trying to prep for the two shows I’m doing in the next month. First, you can find me on Saturday the 23rd at Massachusetts Sheep and Wool, hanging out and vending as usual with the Holiday Yarns crowd. Then, on June 6th, I’ll be vending all by my lonesome at the Ravelry Party/Marketplace at Squam Lake, which should be totally fun and exciting and a little nervewracking because I’ll have no idea what I’m doing! But I’m looking forward to it quite a lot.
If you see something specific in the store that you’d like me to bring to either of these events, please let me know and I’ll be happy to set it aside! If not, feel free to just stop by and say hello, or hang out. I’ll be giving free impromptu spinning lessons to anyone who asks (and probably to anyone who doesn’t ask) as well as hugs and peanut butter cookies to everyone. 🙂
Hi kids! Today I’d like to talk to you about a very important issue in all of our lives: Stash.
This is my Stash. (Well, mostly. There’s another shelf with the non-green non-sock yarn, as well as a giant bin of scrap yarn. And the fiber Stash is about this size. Okay, so this is a small portion of my Stash. Whatever.)
I have Stash issues. Now, don’t get me wrong, I like knowing that at any given moment, should the world’s yarn stores suddenly run out of all of their fiber, I will still have something to knit. And I like knowing that at any given moment if I feel the need to start a pair of socks, or a sweater, or a toy, or a pair of mittens, I can get right to it without having to stop and run to the yarn store (or order online) and pick out a color and decide on a weight and discuss with the shop owner how much I’ll really need because the pattern says eight skeins but I like my sleeves longer so maybe I need nine skeins but I’m skipping the hood so maybe seven will be enough? So I like having yarn around, to keep me from such dilemmas.
But it’s too much. It bothers me. I know my Stash pales in comparison to that of some people (you know who you are), but there is at least two dozen projects’ worth in there, and that leads me to startitis. After all, there is a sweater’s worth of yarn over there, just waiting to be started, and I have just the pattern for it, so I might as well get to it, right? I should also start those knee socks, while I’m here, and that pair of colorwork mittens that I’ve been dying to make. And I want to break into that fiber because I think it would make a great laceweight, nevermind that I spin at a snail’s pace and laceweight is an especially lengthy project, and gosh, that is a cute toy and it should be fast, and I have just the yarn for it, and this yarn, well, this yarn could not be any more perfect for a scarf, and if I don’t start that now it will probably become less perfect for said scarf as time goes on, so I should start it. How long could a scarf take me, really? I knit a freakin’ lace shawl in 72 hours!
And another one. And um, another one.
But it’s the Stash’s fault. Really.
Test knitting is kind of exciting to me—it’s fun to come in and be part of the designing process and get to work on creating a better pattern. And it’s even better when I get to do it for a friend!
Nicola designed these really delightful socks and kindly permitted me to tear her pattern to pieces and then put it back together again. Of course, she writes such a great pattern to begin with that there’s actually very little for me to do, other than to knit the pattern.
You may have also noticed that I’ve been knitting directly from the skein for the past couple of projects; I don’t know why I started doing this (I suspect sheer laziness) but I’m finding that I really like it. It saves me the trouble of winding a cake, rewinding it because it’s too tight, rewinding again because it’s too loose, then again because it’s all uneven, then a few more times halfway through the project because the whole thing’s collapsed in on itself, then one more time when I’m done with the project so I can store the leftovers. Instead I start out with a skein and end up with a smaller skein. Easy. In fact I think I might break out my niddy noddy and skein up all of my caked yarn—it’ll be easier to store that way, too.
And you said it couldn’t be done!
Well, that’s not true. You never said that. I may have said that. Once. Twice. Half a dozen times while working the ever increasing rows that would not end. But can you blame me for doubting myself? As my dad so succinctly put it, it takes me two months to knit a single pair of socks. What in the world made me believe that I could knit a shawl in 72 hours?
Pattern: Hyrna Herborgar by Sigridur Halldorsdottir
Yarn: Yarn Chef Bouillabaisse in Sea Urchin, one skein
Needles: US6/4mm Addi Turbos
On Ravelry here.
First and third pictures courtesy of Cristi, whom I was so very pleased to meet for the very first time on Saturday. Second picture courtesy of Pam, whom I was so very pleased to get to see again. And look at how lovely they look together!