tDf: Day Whatever

So you may have noticed that the shine has gone of my enthusiasm for the Tour de Fleece and the reason why is this: all that yarn I washed back on day 8 IS STILL NOT DRY.* I am starting to worry that it might started to become mildewed, although I know intellectually that this is unlikely since wool is naturally mildew resistant. Still, OMG YOU GUYS THIS YARN IS STILL WET! It’s not super wet, you can feel just a little bit of wetness in the center of the yarn when you squeeze it. I made a post on in the Florida Spinners group on Ravelry (also Facebook), and while there have been a few responses, it’s nothing that I haven’t tried already. Also my cat is starting to eat the yarn. Lolly is such a dumbass, you guys. She thinks all this yarn hanging around is a special buffet I’ve laid out just for her. Yesterday when I was moving the yarn to a drying rack underneath the ceiling fan I found several severed strands where she has eaten who knows how many inches. ARGH. And so I figured that I’d better slow my yarn production until I can figure out how to get it dry more quickly so I can get it tucked safely into the stash before the damn cat gets to it. So far, in addition to all the normal stuff like hanging it with a fan nearby to blow on it, I have put it in a container of rice and am now considering sticking it in my electric food dehydrator.

*Actually, that’s not entirely true, the singles I made dried up beautifully. Their beauty shots are here and here.

TdF day 7

So, I ended up doing a chain ply with those pretty polwarth singles:

Argh, I kind of suck at chain plying right now. I mean. To be fair, this is only the 2nd time I’ve ever done it and it took me quite a while to find a rhythm that worked for me, the single, and my wheel. (Which reminds me, spinning slowly is very hard. I guess I should practice that too.) That being said, I do like how the yarn came out (although I do wish I’d been able to end up with a more balanced ply). I love the long color repeats, probably as much as I love the marled effect when you do a plain 2-ply.

So, with the first week of the tour happily behind us, I’ve spun through almost all of my fiber stash. All I’ve got left is the Romney fleece and some fluffy undyed BFL I got out of the bins at Webs the last time I went, which means I am kind of in the market for some pretty fiber. I’m thinking about joining one of the Woolgatherings clubs, but I’m certainly open to other sources. Who is your favorite indy dyer? Link spam me people!

TdF Day 2

The little irony from Day 1:

1. I really need more practice to get good at spinning silk.

2. I did not enjoy spinning silk well enough to get more practice.

I don’t think I shall be continuing the silk caps for this year’s TdF. Or if at all. I spin because it’s fun and relaxing and that little blue hank there was neither fun nor relaxing to make. So, onwards.

Also for today, here is that yarn I was working on the day the movers came to load our stuff.

I’m rather a bit happier with this one, I must say. Both hanks need a wash and set before they are well and truly “finished”. But for now they are close enough.

Today I hope to finish the Alpaca from the Martha’s Vineyard trip a couple of years ago, and possibly I will ply up the silk/qiviut¬†blend which has been taking up one of my bobbins for a while now.

Oops

The Loopy Ewe had a Wollmeise update the other day and I might’ve gotten to the website soon enough to have a hank of it fall into my basket.

Oh my goodness this stuff is lovely. My intention was to use it to make Bigger on the Inside, but a) there is more purple in it than I thought and b) I realized too late that the Wollmeise is about 300 yards too short for that. Still it’ll make a beautiful something or other. Citron maybe? Or maybe I’ll triple it with some of the other Wollmeise in my stash and make one of these Color Affection shawls that are so popular right now?

My Prize, Let Me Show You It

I popped into the LYS today to pick up my door prize from yesterday’s yarn tasting. Check it out:

A cute little project bag:

Which contained a soft ball of CEY Silky Alpaca Lace and a pattern for a lovely scarf:

ALSO! My totally AWESOME friend Weaver gave me this way cool hand basket:

…for me to go to Hell in. ;-) I <3 Longaberger baskets!! Thanks Weaver!

Another Yarn Tasting!

Today was another yarn tasting at the LYS. What fun! The first 15 or 20 people who signed up got a little package of mini skeins:

Which I am going to sit down and knit into swatches right this very minute.

ALSO! I arrived home to a message from the shop on my voicemail telling me I’d won a door prize! I have no idea what the door prize is, but it’s still exciting to win something. Pictures of that after I pick it up, probably tomorrow.

WINNING!

My First Yarn Tasting

So my LYS had a nifty yarn tasting today, which featured yarns from Bijou Basin Ranch. I have seen them at Rhinebeck, but their booth is either too full of people for me to get into, or they don’t have any yarn left for me to fondle (or to sell me), which is why the yarn tasting was such a treat!

First I knitted with the Yak/Bamboo blend. It was soft and drapey. The Rep had knitted a Pretty Thing cowl from it (see it in the photo there, just behind the yarn ball?) and it took all my will power not to tuck that Pretty Thing into my pocket and sneak out the door with it.

Next up was the Cormo blend. It was soft, light, and very very smooshy. A hank of it may have found its way into my shopping basket.

Oops. But least I ignored my baser desires and actually paid for it! *laugh*

Lastly, I sampled the 100% yak lace weight. Loved. It. It reminds me a lot of qiviut fiber in that it definitely has that softness, but it’s not quite as pricey and, as such, is much more accessible.

The Rep also brought along a sample of the yak down which had been processed for spinning, but since the shop doesn’t actually carry spinning fiber I wasn’t able to bring any of that home with me. (boo-hoo!) Luckily, it’s available on their website! (yay!)

All in all, I had a really nice time. The shop owner is a lovely woman who you can tell just loves yarn and The Rep was a very enthusiastic lover of all things Bijou Basin. It was fun to sit with them and the other yarn tasters and bond over our love of string! Yay yarn!

Further, a certain knit blogger you know may be teaching a sock class there in March. I’ll keep you posted.

Socks!

[ravelry]

Finished up yesterday while at a play date w/ the boys and cast off last night while playing Borderlands with the hubs. (My computer takes a long time (sometimes) to load the different maps.) Did I tell you I love this yarn? Soft and sproingy and look how much of it I had left over!

Luckily I have some more in the stash. :-)

Catching you up

Sometimes you go so long without making a blog post that re-entry is awkward and difficult without an “I’m sorry I haven’t blogged” sort of statement. Generally I try to avoid those because, hey, blogging is a hobby and sometimes I have time for it, and sometimes I don’t. Suffice it to say that not only was July a very busy month, but I have also spread myself rather thin in the social media sphere. I have two blogs, a ravelry, a tumblr, a twitter, and a Facebook and trying to figure out how to integrate them all (or even in part) has been tricky. I mean, I don’t want the tumblr (or the Ravelry) to replace blogging and I don’t want the twitter to replace Facebook. I want them all to sort of support each other. But I haven’t quite managed to solve that puzzle yet. [sigh]

So, what have I been up to, besides not blogging, raveling, tumblring, twittering on occasion, and Facebooking? My last couple of weeks, let me show you them.

1. The Tour de Fleece got finished:

It was seriously fun and I am definitely going to do it again next year.

2. There was a Webs excursion:

I didn’t get much this time. I was mostly along for the ride with a friend who was buying yarn for her holiday knitting.

3. There has been knitting progress:

(click each photo to be taken to the Ravelry project page)

And that’s it, you’re all pretty much caught up now. How has your summer been so far? Keeping busy?