Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Sweater finished! Another COE skein done

After almost a year of work in fits and starts, I've finally finished hubsters sweater. This was a Filati Mens Special #6 that I purchased last November while living in Holland. I bought the yarn from Webs and had it shipped home so I could start knitting as soon as I landed home again. We thought the company had English translations, but when the shop owner called Lana Grossa he was told that issue #5 was the last to have an English translation. Drat! My friend Anke stepped forward and translated the pattern so that I was able to start knitting some time in late March/early April. Knitting was halted during the hot summer and finished min-January. I caught this photo right after hubster scraped the car at 5am so I could drive him to the airport for an early flight. He looks good, he likes it and I'm finished with the darn thing--just too many stitches in the same pattern stitch for me. I like a little change-up in my sweater-knitting.

And I'm halfway through the Fine Textured Cotton skein for the COE. Made lots of little punis for this skein and they are SO fun to spin. I may just have to get more of this cotton from the southern plantation that grew it. Especially since I don't think they use those nasty exfoliants since they're growing a "tourist patch" and not harvesting for the cotton market. Photo shows the basket of punis and two bolls of cotton sitting in front. Too bad there's no real use for all those cotton seeds I plucked out....

Friday, January 16, 2009

COE Handspinning progress report 1

This was the week I started in earnest on spinning the 40+ small skeins required for my submission. I had originally planned to post photos and give in-depth details of the process, but then realized that my identity is supposed to be anonymous for my submission. While I can talk in generalizations, I won't be posting pix of the skeins at this time.

It took me 2 days to finish the skein of Fine Woolen yarn from a raw fleece. I'd forgotten how much work is involved in cleaning, carding and finishing wool--and now I'm glad that I now longer have to do it this way. "Back in the day" when we didn't have access to many mill-prepared fibers, if you wanted to spin you bought a fleece and prepared it yourself. And spinning a fine and truly woolen yarn was something I'd never done. I've used long draw and I've spun woolen yarn (especially good for the kids mittens when they were little), but not so fine as required for this skein. I've got over 300 yards in a 1.4 oz. skein!

Have started prepping the cotton bolls for spinning, teasing the cotton off the seeds and carding it into punis. I've also gotten some Rambouillet lambs fleece from Wild Rose Farm washed up and ready for combing. Hopefully, I'll get some spinning time this Saturday either before or after I teach on Saturday. Sunday is, of course, reserved for watching the Steeler game--Luv Ya, Black 'n Gold! Go Steelers!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Six Hands: End of the story

So, Dottie has finished and listed both the scarf and cowl on her Etsy page. They are both lovely and ON SALE! Go take a look at the Garden of Colors scarf http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=18681691 and the Garden of Colors cowl http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=19310653 Truly lovely work! This was a collaborative project between Whirligig Yarns who dyed the alpaca roving in such colors that I couldn't pull myself away from her site for 3 days, myself who spun the alpaca roving and plied it with Merino wool, and Dottie at CCDZS who pulled it all together with her crochet hook and imagination.