Saturday, November 14, 2009

Survived another Friday the 13th at work, better than the usual, actually. It has been dark and rainy here since last Tuesday but the light was ok for a few pictures today.

My most impressive class at SOAR was 3 hours with Sarah Swett. She didn't spin but brought 3 types of washed fleece we were supposed to card/comb/otherwise prep and spin for soft yarn. She had a display set up of many of her sweaters and they were amazing. All wool prepped and spun by her. The fabric was so elastic. They were wearing very well. This labor intensive method helped along by only needing enough yarn for a Size 2. My friend says the main idea was to spin loose singles and overply. My sample from the class was pretty sad, mainly due to trying to ply in inadequate light in my room.
So ordered some Romney/Coopworth batt off etsy, katrinaswoolworld, very nice seller. It was well prepared cause frankly I don't have enough life left to spend on selecting, washing and carding. 3 ply woolen singles and slightly overplied. 6 3/8 oz, 500 yards. Sent the swatch through the washer. 7.5 st/in on 1's. A little fuzzy, somewhat elastic, but not there yet. The color is true. Oatmeal gray.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Next was a large plateau area of chunks of volcanic rock and scrub grasses. Couple of gorges where a river had cut through, a few cows and a tiny town where we stopped for gas and apples. Which were $1 a pound cheaper than here. On a clear day they could turn any direction and see mountains but it's a pretty isolated place to live.

We made it into Bend , collected a friend from the airport and went downtown. Had a nice fishy lunch in a mall area constructed around an old mill. Downtown had a nice tea shop and many other retail establishments aimed at tourists. Extremely cute little Craftsman style houses near town, McMansions further out. Their economy is very precarious right now, 19% unemployment. We returned at times during the week for real food. Moose was there almost every day checking out the bakeries. Picture is from the top of Pilot Butte at sunset. All clear except the wisps of clouds on the peaks. This is in the middle of Bend and very scary drive up, no guardrails.

Sign in was very efficient at the resort. The rooms were nice but poorly lit. The public spaces were positively murky and with sparse seating so there wasn't much opportunity to gather and spin in the evening. The food was on the cheap ticket and nourishing but unexciting. Breakfast every day was scrambled eggs and oatmeal. & different preps of oatmeal, who knew? No toast, fruit every other day. Yogurt once. No soup. Soup is cheap, why not? The last night they had a well cooked steak dinner with vegetables. Another problem was that everything was in a different building. Winding, poorly lit, sometimes slippery paths. Not so good for the older attendees schlepping wheels and equipment. Shuttle busses were available.

Sunday we drove back through Portland to Olympia. The day was much clearer and better views on the plateau. Mt Hood again. Olympia is laid out with many walking opportunities. Huge lake in the middle with a nice path. Lots of ducks. The flight home was unremarkable. I was happy to see my kitties again. The loads of laundry not so much.


It was a long trip out. First leg ok, 2nd leg a woman who OBVIOUSLY had the flu hacking and streaming across the aisle. And a screaming baby. Landed in Portland with rain. Found the car and went to Powell's, bought some books. Then we visited a food cart, The Frying Scotsman. He was parked in a garage space in a warehouse. Hard to find but the fish/chips were good. Dinner at a very nice Thai place. It was weird to see all the people walking around after dark. Not usual for Baltimore.

Next day went to the waterfront park where they have a craft market every Saturday. No fiber stuff except crocheted hats and a few other bulky accessories. Visited a nice yarn store: Twist. They had a large selection of sock and worsted and were mobbed with customers. Very friendly staff. All the shop and restaurant people we encountered in Oregon were pleasant , friendly and helpful. Stark contrast again to Baltimore. Picked up Farilyn at the airport and went to a German place for dinner. Packed. Good food. Sunday we had a terrible breakfast at the hotel. Fuzzy picture through a window of sunrise. First time the mountain was visible.

As we rode Mt Hood got bigger. Pretty exciting close up. Cold and breezy. Pretty vicious slopes on the way down, hairpin turns, luckily very little traffic.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Not going to be able to do a catch-up on the months of hiatus. Tour De Fleece was interesting. I also spun way too much causing sore elbow and no spinning for a while. I came in first twice and second once in the daily tab. Feeling that there was plenty of stuff here, I told them not to give me a prize the 2nd time. They expunged me from the winner list. So the 3rd time I took the prize. Got Tuulia's sweater pattern and Gold Dust Woman. I didn't post my 4th yarn. It was nice seeing all the spinning pictures. This one is AllSpun Up swm. 6 oz, about 500 yards nply. Made a pair of baby socks cause I couldn't wait to see how it looked.

First Wool Sock Day

Holding out against the other inhabitants re: turning on the heat. Rainy, chilly, 40's at night. Our kind of weather.

Here is the first installment of yet another fiber club. Can't of course get into the really popular ones like Hello Yarn and Julie but I've tried most of the others. Bee Mice Elf, 4 oz, 50% Tussah/30%Merino/20% Seacell. Salmon 170 yards, blue 250 yards, 3 ply fingering. No elasticity, typical of silk. This would have to be an accent or scarf. Shiny and very easy to spin. I separated the colors cause I didn't want it to look like 4 July.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Faux-noro Socks

It's been so long since I blogged, difficult to sign in. For many moons I have wanted to make Noro-striped socks. Accumulated a huge bag of the sock yarns, even swatched but it JUST WASN"T RIGHT. Purely by accident unwound this roving from Woolamina and found it suitable to spin a color-block with. N-plied, 4 oz. The socks didn't last long enough for the gold to be used. Colors are every shade of brick red and nile green. Corriedale, soft enough. Haven't washed them yet.
Finished a week ago but had trouble scheduling my model Alison for the photoshoot. Assisted by Mikey whose favorite wool is Corriedale.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Love those sampler packs. I was always buying them during the quilting era. The beading era. This one was Falkland, 6.8 oz, from FeltStudioUK. Really nice fiber. 3 of the skeins are 2 bits combined, the others on their own. 740 yards of 2 ply. As usual, no plans.

Monday, June 8, 2009

May/June AllSpunUp Fiber Club. 4 oz superwash merino, 360 yards of n-ply. In an effort to lessen the pain and tedium of n-plying, I split this into 2 parts. It helped. Another factoid: pre-wash: 410 yards. This lost 50 yards. I knew skeins shrank but the amount was shocking. Part of it may be due to my loose plying, giving the singles room to pouf. But the yarn is perfectly balanced. The colors were some of the most beautiful I've had, Like malachite. Sadly the orange bits didn't translate.

Although we live in a very populous area, we have a big back yard. This year we've seen a pair of Hairy Woodpeckers and a pair of nuthatches bring their children to the feeder. They've been here in the past but this is the first time to see babies.

There was a bumper crop of poppies. They must like all the rain. Also have robust sunflower growth. Fewer larkspur due to the landscaping done last fall. These 3 plants all reseed wherever and lead the ignorant to believe we put effort into the garden.

We've had several weeks of rain, illness, hospital visiting, surgery... Just didn't have the energy to post. But spinning did happen. I don't know how people get through bad periods without fiber activities.

These are from batts bought last fall from Redstone Yarn. Merino, silk and a little sparkle. The red one I did on the Golding spindle. 155 yards, 2 ply, 1 oz. The purple was done on a Kundert, 140 yards 2 ply, 1.5 oz. There is another red batt and 2 turquoise to go. The Golding was amazing.

Friday, May 8, 2009

First sun in 2 weeks. This stuff wasn't coming out well inside. 4 oz, 430 yards, 3 ply superwash merino. Bought from Cloverhill at the Sheep & Wool. The roving was not as yellow as it looks. The 2 yarn pics are pretty close. Singles on the JW, plied on Lendrum. Nicely squishy.
Got into SOAR, taking Judith's class, Spinning for Socks.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Sheep & Wool 2009

Pretty much today's haul. Had most of what I wanted by 10:00, had to make a trip to the car and thought about leaving. However, had arranged to meet people so... Started out cool and rainy, lovely. I was glad not to have succumbed to panic and worn long sleeves. The crowd didn't bulk up until about noon and everything was still jammed at 1:30 when I left. Saw several people from SOAR and some from the local group.
One pound merino in tropical colors from Frabjous Fibers purchased at Susan's
4 oz merino from Cloverhill
2 pounds mixed wool batts in purples and burgundy from Spinner's Hill
Turkish spindle and mini agate from Spanish Peacock
Golding spindle so I won't be the only person WITHOUT one
Ribbon Fries with cheese - forgot to take a picture

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Forgot to post about this, done in Feb/ March. Nicest fiber I've ever spun, 50/50 Bfl/Alpaca from CrosswindFarm on etsy. Very reasonable price for liquid silver. 2 1/2 lbs, 1600 yards, 3 ply. Dead ringer for Ultra Alpaca but a little smoother and of course denser. DK swatched on 5's. I was nervous buying it cause I just bought one to try and then was worried someone would have snapped up the rest. Really boring spinning all this plain color but it's very wonderful yarn in a sweater quantity. Yay. Highly unlikely to be knitted anytime soon. Someday there will be a box for spinners where you can put in the yarn and a description and the knitted article will come out the other side in a couple of days.

Officially Obsessed

Another Grafton n-ply. 1 batt, 300 yards. This time using the little white bathroom as a light box produced almost perfect colors. It's a very rich colorway. April. I'm still 3 batts behind. No idea what to do with these except hoard. They're difficult but very compelling to me.
So hot here that even with A/C wool is distasteful. Should be making an effort to plant stuff but afraid the little plants are withering in pots. Hoping it cools off before the weekend as Sheep & Wool is miserable when hot. Poor animals.