Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Lots of spinning

About a month ago, Riv was at a craft show. In addition to her shiny jewelry, she also took along a bunch of my yarn and roving to sell. And my business cards came a few days before the show, so I gave a bunch of those to her as well.

Unfortunately, no one bought any of my stuff, but some people took my business card, and one person was interested in commissioning me to spin up some of my rovings.

So I contacted the woman who was interested in the yarn a few days later, and she commissioned me to spin up three rovings.

Peacock Feathers:

More Leaves:

and Jewels:

I think Jewels was my favorite, and it was really nice to be able to spin with it.

So now they are pretty yarn. Huzzah!

I still have more things to spin! And my last dyeing session had some felted rovings, so in order to salvage them I might spin them myself and sell the yarn, since the yarn will be fine (though the spinning will be annoying). Or maybe I'll give it all away to my friends who are spinners. There are only 4 of them, so it's not so bad.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Etsy update coming soon

I did a ton of dyeing last night. Here are some of the finished products.

Most of it is going to the Etsy shop, though I did dye one roving which will turn into a skein of yarn that was a charity prize, and there's one that will be gloves or a hat or something for a friend, and there's also baby llama that I got for myself. It came yesterday as I was between batches of dyeing, so it ended up getting dyed.

The ones below will go in the shop. I'm going to wait until I can get pictures with natural lighting before I put them up, since these pictures don't do the fibers justice.

[Not sure what to name this one]

Straw into Gold

Purple Shiny
(She's my house mate, and the colorway would be something she'd spin with, so I named it after her.)


I think I dyed 13 things total, which is my largest dyeing session ever. There were 3 batches! 3!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Interior Decorating Revolution!

We finally got around to putting up the artwork in my house today. We have a sad common room, which is less sad now that it has a giant couch and a TV table, but still lacked color.

So we added some paintings:

However, the room still lacks color. Specifically, the trim on the windows is really sad. Some of the paint is peeling off. So either we could cover it up with curtains, or we could paint the trim.

But what color(s)?

We lacked paint chips, however, I had a full palette of colors. Behold, interior decorating with wool!

Maybe we could do purple:

or red:

or turquoise-ish-purple-blue-something-or-other:

or light green:

I think you can probably do the same thing with different colors of yarn. Now you don't need to go get paint chips! And wool is so much softer than paint chips. Maybe we should just put the wool up. Except then I can't spin it...

We still haven't decided what color to paint the trim or what kind of curtains we want, but there might be some purple. Also, our floor is sad, too, and needs a big purple rug. Maybe we'll even paint the ceiling fan.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

New Roving-- Fall colors

I dyed a lot of roving last week, which is now up in the Etsy shop. I decided to focus on warm colors, since my last batch was primarily cool colors.

Here they are, hanging out to dry on the porch:

More leaves 2:

Fire and Water:

More Leaves 1 (I think)

I actually dyed 3 rovings in similar colors, and called them all "More Leaves!" More Leaves 1 and 2 are in the shop, while I kept More Leaves 3 for myself, partially because I wanted it and partially because there was major blue spillage and thus I don't think it's worthy of selling. Same with the yellow orange one. But I have use for yarn in these colors, so I don't mind spinning it. And there are now 13 items in my shop, which I think is a respectable amount for the moment.

I also dyed a bunch of smaller rovings for myself on Thursday which I have not yet photographed. One of them might become a pair of gloves for a friend, and the rest I have no clue what to do with, other than turn them into pretty yarn and admire how pretty the yarn is. Actually, I think that's a pretty good plan. Don't you?

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Whee, it's roving!

I've dryed and braided all of the roving and yarn now, and put it in the Etsy shop.

Behold my awesomeness:


Mr. Biv



Summer Breeze


I did some more dyeing on Monday night, with orange, yellow and red dyes. Unfortunately there was a bit of blue spillage (I was making one roving of orange and blue) with the result of spots of blue on the other roving. I might be able to salvage it. If not, I can either keep it all for myself or remove the blue, spin it into yarn, and sell the yarn instead. It's still drying, so we'll see what happens.

Thursday, October 08, 2009


Today I experimented with dyeing roving to hopefully sell in my Etsy shop (which I just created this week). I bought 7lbs of merino wool on the internets, and I've been dyeing it in units of 4 oz., since that's what people usually have it in when they're selling hand-dyed roving.

My first batch came out darker than I would have liked, but apparently it's still pretty. I learned that I need to dilute the dyes more.

Also, I learned that the colors will blend a bit, and this yarn does not have the variegation I wanted it to have but oh well:

But batch 2 came out much better. Whee!

I have to wait for them to dry so I can properly photograph them, and then I can put them in the store. I hope people will like them and buy them and make pretty yarn out of them.

Here are 2 skeins of yarn that are from the fleece from my friend's alpaca farm. They actually do already exist in the etsy shop.

Also my banner is sad. It's a placeholder banner. I'll make a real one eventually (or pay someone else who has better skills than me).

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Fun things

I'm not sure whether or not I've mentioned that I have a goal of making myself enough hand-knit socks so I can just wear hand-knits. So far I have 2 pairs. This is the second, which I did a couple of weeks ago. No pattern, just ribbing at the cuff and stockinette for the rest. Kinda boring, but the yarn was pretty and I didn't have to pay attention to what I was doing. And they were a quick knit. And I like wearing them

I'm working on another pair, Sunday Swing. I'm at the toe of the first sock, so I might finish it tonight depending on what else I want to do.

I've also been doing a lot of spinning lately. I've made 2 skeins of the white alpaca, one of which I dyed, the other of which I'm waiting until me and my housemate have the supplies to make a bunch of colors at once and paint the rovings. I haven't taken a picture of the dyed yarn (I couldn't find my camera for a week, though now it's back) but here's an undyed skein, pre washing:

Upon washing the skeins I learned that they really are, in fact, pure white. I also learned that I need to be more careful, since the yarn felted and that was not fun to sort out. I probably can't sell those skeins, but I might use them to make myself a pair of gloves.

Here's a skein I did a while back. It is pretty, and I have no clue what to do with it (180ish yarns of worsted-ish weight yarn):

And finally, here is one of my most recent creations, a 40 foot I-cord rope, made out of alpaca from the alpaca farm (mostly second cuts, since I wanted to save the good stuff for things that can be worn):

I skeined it and tied it up, felted it, put it in a box, and sent it to Virginia:

And the recipient loves it. Yay, rope! (Now I need to think of an even weirder project.)

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Blogging again!

I've been a bad blogger. I haven't updated in forever. Part of it is the fact that there are probably only 2 or so people who read it. Part of it was being busy. Part of it was laziness.

However, I've gotten a lot of knitting done, especially since I finished school at the end of May and graduated in June.

Many months ago I started a pair of mittens, having never made them before. I started off with a pattern and did my usual thing of not checking gauge, which usually works out fine but this time was going to turn out in gigantic mittens. Not wanting to take out what I had started, I thought of a better solution: thrumming!

Thrumming is when you take a tuft of wool and knit it into something. The link above is a great tutorial by the Yarn Harlot. It results in a layer of fluffy wool inside the garment, which is really soft and warm.

I used some of the leftover second cuts of alpaca that I had never spun up. It worked surprisingly well. Here are the finished mittens:

Another fun project I had was making 2 socks at the same time on the same set of double-pointed needles. I really should have taken pictures of the socks in progress, because the final picture is just a normal-looking pair of socks:

But i really did do them at the same time. I alternated the colors so that I could easily tell the socks apart. Switching colors proved to be a bit difficult in that it was all to easy to start up knitting with the wrong yarn and knit the socks together. But I figured it out. The other mistake was me not turning the socks inside out to do the 3-needle bind off. But they are baby socks for charity and I'm sure that the baby and/or charity will not mind.

Here's the tutorial from Knitty, which is what I used:

Extreme Knitting!
I now also have infinite amounts of alpaca to spin for my friend who has an alpaca farm. I'm spinning up all 7 fleeces and I get to keep half of the yarn. I'm currently spinning up the white stuff, which is really soft.

When an alpaca is sheared the fleece has 2 parts: the blanket cut which is the back and sides/all the shiny fleece, and the second cuts, which come from the legs, neck, etc. The second cuts are a lot smaller and not as soft, and are of lesser quality. However, they are still soft and spinable.

(The yarn in this post comes from second cuts.)

While I was working with the second cuts for the thrumming, I was actually wondering whether or not they really were second cuts, since they were so soft. Then I spun some of the blanket fleece. Then I spun up the rest of the second cuts that were leftover from the thrumming process, and as soon as I started spinning I could feel the difference. Blanket fleece is so much nicer! I may end up spinning more second cuts if I ever finish the infinite amounts of blanket fleece, but I might have more than enough yarn anyways and not bother and just use it for things like thrumming.

Also, I'm thinking of getting into dyeing fleeces and selling roving/batts on the internets. I might start with some of the alpaca, or playing around with cheap white yarn or something. Hopefully I'll make shiny things that I can post about.

I'll try to be better about the whole blogging thing. I have zillions of things I've made, so there's no reason not to post about them.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Still Here

Although my life has been insane for the past couple of months, I'm still here, still knitting. I've been working on a few things. First: a hat for my grandmother that only took me a couple of hours to make since I used big yarn and size11 needles:

Then a Celtic cable scarf for myself, from this pattern:

And finally, a pair of socks for myself. I'm almost done with the second sock. These will be the 4th pair of socks I've made, the second pair of adult-sized socks I've made, and the first pair of socks that are actually for me.

I made the cable pattern myself- I had cast on 44 stitches, with k2p2 ribbing to start, and then realized I wanted it to be more interesting than just stockinette for the body of the sock. So I charted out a cable, and came up with this:

It actually isn't so hard, other than the lack of ws rows, which makes me actually have to keep track of whether or not I'm on a cable row. So I'm not sure whether or not I'd use this pattern again. When I'm less lazy I may post a pattern, because even if keeping track of things is annoying, it did come out nicely.