Archive for the ‘spinning’ Category

Monday, March 9th, 2015

Spinning noil

I’ve been really enjoying this new wheel. Trying to fit spinning around school and homework is tough, but it’s a nice mental break and relaxing, so there’s my justification.

A bit about school, as I don’t think I’ve really talked about it here yet. I started at ACC in the fall, in the Automotive Technology program. When I started, all I knew how to do on a car was check the oil. Now, I can change my oil! Haha. It’s a little disappointing to not be able to do more yet, but I know a ton more about how a car works, and I’m inching my way towards being able to do something useful. Last term, I took Intro, Electrical, and Engine Repair. This term, I’m in Heating and Air Conditioning, Engine Performance 1, and Brakes. It’s a lot of reading, and a lot of work, but I’m enjoying it. My hope is to be able to work on cars with my boys as they grow up, and to be able to teach them how to maintain and fix their cars in the future. Plus, I still want an old jeep, and I’d rather keep it running myself than have a mechanic on retainer.

But, when I’m not in class or doing homework, I’ve been spinning. This weekend, I finished and plied my first of hopefully many skeins of silk noil. I got 340 yards out of 3.1 ounces. Hoping to make a pretty sweater, but I have no idea which one yet.



Monday, February 9th, 2015

Spinning laceweight

I have some dyed mohair locks from years back. I’m carding rolags and drafting them into roving. This wheel spins so fast and smooth and easy, it almost spins itself. If it were a nice top without all the nupps and vm from matted locks, I’m pretty sure it WOULD spin itself!




I have 4.5 ounces. If I can spin it all, I should have a zillion yards of pretty mohair lace weight. Kind of excited.

Wednesday, October 19th, 2011

The hat so far

Man we’ve been busy! I don’t like being busy. It’s a testament to how fast hats are that I have this much done.


It’s been non-stop this week. I think tomorrow is relatively unscheduled. Yay! I look forward to it.

How do you like the hat? I’m not completely happy with the tension behind the colorwork, so I’m going to rip it out and redo it. I’m contemplating moving the pattern closer to the bottom a few rows. I don’t know. I’m going to have to spend some time in front of the mirror to see exactly where I want to place the color change.

Clark was SO cute yesterday. He was adamant that I teach him how to spin. He’s been “spinning” on my wheels since he was 2, by holding onto the bobbin leader and moving his hand up and down while treadling. Well, yesterday he decided he wanted to do it for real. I said no. He persisted. I said no a few more times, and told him it was really hard. He was sure he could do it.

So I went downstairs and found some fiber I was willing to sacrifice to the cause. I showed him what to do with his hands while I treadled for him and do you know? He did really, really well! Shockingly well. When he would pinch and pull the wool forward, he’d look and stop before pulling it completely apart. That’s actually remarkable. Then he’d slide his thumb and finger back down at the proper tension, to about the right place before doing it again.

I think he’s a natural.

Tuesday, October 18th, 2011

Spinning is fun

I don’t do it much anymore, but I really enjoy spinning, and really like to spin my batts.


Nate was somewhat in awe last night. “You just decide you want a hat, pick through your stash of wool downstairs, and spin up yarn. Just like that!”


It’ll be interesting to see how the knitting goes. Fortunately, hats are a small project. But the last few times I’ve tried to knit (it’s been many months since I tried), my tendonitis flared up something fierce.

There was a time in my life when I dreaded not being able to knit. I’d heard of it happening to other people, and thought there could be nothing worse. Fortunately, music has come into the picture, and I am able sate my need-to-create through another vehicle.

But I do miss it.

As for the hat…. I’m hoping it looks as nice as I’m envisioning. There are specific design elements in my head, but I’m not sure how they’re actually going to play out.

I’m going for another slouchy hat, but I wanted this one to be thicker than my brown one,


so the yarn is heavier. I have a huge, thick, blue and brown hat that my sister knit a decade ago. It’s an unintentional slouch hat, and I love it. That’s kind of the vibe I’m going for, but I want it to fit better around the face. We’ll see what happens.

Thursday, March 31st, 2011

a preview

Here’s what’s going up next on my etsy shop. What should I call this colorway? I don’t have any fabulous name ideas. Tell me what you think.



Monday, March 14th, 2011

I made a slouchy hat!!!

I’m so excited! I’ve wanted two things for a long time…

1. to knit a slouchy hat for myself
2. to knit something for myself from my Tweedy Batts

When cleaning out the wool room last month, I collected odds and ends of browns I’d dyed years ago when testing out colors. I decided to do something productive with them so I separated, carded, and spun them into 3 different tweed yarns, plus a blue. Making it up as I went, I started knitting yesterday morning and came up with this-



and it’s GORGEOUS, GORGEOUS, GORGEOUS!!! I’m so excited. So now, I want to make Tweedy Hat kits for my etsy shop.



Of course, since I was using old test scraps, I’m going to have to go back the drawing board in terms of trying to dye up more. But I’ve got the blue, the tweed, and the dark brown used on the skinny stripes. And I know and still have at least one of the dyes that I used on the brown wool, and a good guess at the others. So it’ll take some work, but it should be doable. However it won’t be exact so I’m left to hope I can make it work.

In other news, I’m working on posting a new color on etsy, which will bring me to 7. It’s a gray/yellow combination that is really pretty. I’ve knit Liv a mitt with it and have the yarn spun up to knit the other one.

I still don’t know how I’m going to tweed the blue, which is the clean blue stripe in my slouchy hat.

And finally, I sold my first batt! Nate designed a nifty card for me to slip in the back of the package (that truly did not photograph well) and I shipped it off on Friday!


I’m finally doing this.

Monday, March 7th, 2011


You may recall that we returned Abby’s horrible lovebird and bought a baby parakeet several months ago. His name is Meiko. In the last 6 months, he’s grown quite a bit and has livened up significantly, which is good.. I was worried for awhile, ’cause I’m not remotely exaggerating when I say that for months, he might as well have been a stuffed bird that pooped. He didn’t move, or tweet, or eat when anyone was watching….. I think he was extremely young when we got him. Of course, he DID finger train in 1 try, and that was the point of getting a baby bird, so it’s all good.

He’s a sweet little thing but as his temperament is developing, he’s getting a little feisty, which makes me laugh because he’s SO not scary. We’re really enjoying him. His cage is in Abby’s room, but he spends much of the day on his playground which is out in the main living area with me (minus over half of those obnoxious toys).


So, Nate’s still looking for more clients. Max is keeping me busy. I’m working on my Tweedy Batts and have an etsy shop up, but there are only 4 colors on it right now. I have 3 more that I plan to post really soon. Check me out if you want.

Here’s a preview of 2 colors I’ll post soon…



the third is an amazing blue that I’m really excited about.

Monday, November 22nd, 2010


I finished spinning the silk last night


(it’s SO pretty!) and in my excitement to get this scarf done, I didn’t even wash it to set the twist. But I’m using so little, I don’t think it’ll matter.

After knitting a sample of the border, Nate thought that it needed to be a longer, so I experimented a little bit, and I think he’s right. What do you think?


I’m using size 2 needles to get tiny little stitches. Even though I did a provisional cast on so I could knit onto live stitches, this border is technically supposed to be sewn on afterwards but I resisted because I’m not confident in my hand sewing skills at all. However, it seems like that’s what I need to do.

It’s so cold here (snowing now and the temperature is supposed to drop further) I want this thing done so I can wear it and feel cozy.

Monday, January 18th, 2010

That was random

Out of the blue, Veronica noticed the wool she dyed over the summer, and asked me if she could spin it. Her attempts at spinning over the summer didn’t go so well, so I was braced and determined to be patient, despite the difficulty. And she hardly needed my help at all. She spun a bobbin full and is working on the second. How fun!

I took some pictures. This camera I’m borrowing from Carol takes really nice flash pictures, better than any of my cameras have,



but I still go for the non-flash pictures.



They’re so much more… alive.

My mother-in-law had surgery on Friday. The surgery went well. They think they got everything, said it didn’t look like it had spread, and didn’t have to reconstruct much if anything. There have been complications since the surgery that were scary, but as far as I know, she’s stabilized now and should be out of ICU today. We’re still concerned about her blood, which has to clot in the right places and not in the wrong places, as she has artificial valves in her heart. So we’re not out of the woods yet. Once she’s recovered, she gets to enjoy six months of weekly chemo. Prior to surgery, it was monthly.

I’ve changed my mind about the shawl I’m knitting. Instead of a half circle, I’m going to try a faroese from the top down with shoulder shaping.

Friday, January 8th, 2010

Pretty yarn makes pretty pictures, and pretty hats.

I have some close-ups of this yarn that makes me happy just to touch it.


Here’s a good shot of the encased plying. I don’t know the technical term for it,


but it makes for a much more interesting fabric when knit.


I got 3 hours sleep last night. I’m kind of loopy. Fortunately, I don’t have to go anywhere today but I do have a lot of laundry to wash, and countertops to clear.

And I’d really like to card some batts!