Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Knitting the Queue June Update

My self-imposed Knitting the Queue rules are:

  1. Knit the Ravelry queue in order they were added.
  2. Adding and removing items from the queue is allowed, but rearranging the order of the queue is not. 
  3. Deleting items from the queue is allowed. 
  4. Non-queue knitting (such as simple socks, dish cloths and hats) are allowed and encouraged for several reasons: a) for times when mindless knitting is required; b) because I'm down to 2 pairs of socks and 0 dish cloths and really need to stock up; c) in case several difficult or large queue items stack up next to each other; d) in case of a delay in acquiring the materials for the next queued item. 
  5. An queued item may be knitted out of order if, and only if, that queued item needs to be knitted as a sample for an LYS or for a show out of Dyeabolical yarn. In this case the queued item will be considered Work Knitting and not Fun Knitting. All Knitting the Queue projects should be fun and not work.
  6. Knitting the Queue may be dismissed without prejudice should it become Not Fun Anymore.
I don't know how much longer I will stick closely to my self-imposed Knitting the Queue rules. I already had one breach of the rules when I skipped projects 6-30 to knit up the Baktus scarf. Oh well, that's why I have rule #6. The object of KTQ isn't dogmatic adherence to the rules; it's about giving myself incentive to work on those patterns and yarns that I have loved for years but always shove aside in favor of the oooh shiny. It also eliminates that uncomfortable feeling I get when I have finished a project and don't know what to cast on for next.

There are other projects coming up that may take my attention away from KTQ. Tour de Fleece starts on Saturday, Deborah and I are possibly going to do a Yarn Harlot-esque sock club, and I really should be doing more sample knitting. On the other hand, there are some KTQ projects coming up that I am looking forward to. Project #6 is the Apres Ski Kerchief that I have been dying to do out of some art yarn I bought last month. Project #7 is a HP-inspired sweater that I need to cast on for soon if I am going to wear it to the movie in November. Stop laughing.

On to the project updates:

Project #1: Lizard Ridge
Status: In progress
 Squares 6, 7 and 8 are finished! I used two different colorways for squares 7 and 8, instead of pulling from the inside and outside of a single color. I like the results much better! [Image of finished afghan from the Lizard Ridge pattern on]

Project 2: Swiffer Cover and Project 3: Fake Isle are completed and in my Ravelry notebook.

Project #4: Slither
Status: In progress
I finished the first glove and am through the 3rd stripe on the second glove. Buttons have been ordered. The yarn I dyed for this project is one I am considering bringing in for the fall. It is wonderful to knit with, lively and soft. These gloves are surprisingly difficult to photograph without a second person to hold the camera. [Image of finished gloves from the Slither pattern on]

Project #5: Huckleberry Ascot
Status: Finished
Original image from Interweave Knits

I knit this using one skein of Blue Heron Bulky Chenille in the color Curry. I love this color. It is such a glamorous scarf and so soft. The only modification I made was to leave the bobbles off. I finished the flared edges with a single crochet instead.

Project 31: Baktus Scarf
Status: Finished
Image of original scarf by Hildegunn on the Baktus pattern page on Ravelry

Made from my handspun. Pattern loosely followed. I used kfb increases instead of eyelet increases. The scarf is just a little too short for me, but would fit a more petite person well. I am thinking of putting it up for sale or trade. It is a gorgeous shawl, but the shiny yarn doesn't photograph well. The yarn looks very much like a sari silk, but without the dust and filth normally found in sari silk yarn.


Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Clearance sale on bags

The last of the reversible project bags have been marked down from $15 to $10 a piece.  These bags have traveled with me to several shows and it is time to make room for new designs.

My creation

These reversible project bags have roomy circular bottoms and a wide drawstring tops to make it easy to get your projects in and out of your bag. These bags are very strong and easily fit a pair of socks, wallet, keys and other necessities.

Each bag is approximately 8"H x 9.5"W. The bags are 100% cotton and the ribbons are a cotton/rayon blend. The only exception is the yellow toile/Monet bag with the rick rack ribbon. That one is slightly smaller. All materials have been pre-shrunk. The color ribbon you receive may vary.

These bags were sewn by my mom in a pet-friendly home, but stored away from the pets. They may be slightly wrinkled from being stored.

Friday, June 25, 2010

1000 Fabulous Knit Hats

Last year my friend Julie and I submitted her photographs of some of my hats to Annie Modesitt's new book 1000 Fabulous Knit Hats. We knew that at least one of our pictures/hats had been accepted, but the book came yesterday and we have FIVE pictures/hats in the book! Wooohoo!

1000 Fabulous Knit Hats is primarily an inspiration book, not a pattern book. There are 10 award winning patterns in this book and 990 other really nice pictures of knitted and crocheted hats. Yes, I can spend all afternoon looking at hats online OR I can pick up a well-designed book and pour over the images. It is easy to track down the patterns for most of these inspiration hats should I want them because Modesitt helpfully included information on who designed the hat pattern, plus the contact information of each contributor.

These are the hats I have in the book:

a stocking cap, designed by me, knit with 2 different colors of chunky yarn, for sale on Ravlery
Tamberet (that's Julie!) 
tam/beret with stranded colorwork brim, designed by me using my sock yarn held double in the Themyscira colorway for the main color, for sale on Ravlery 
 Purl Beret, design by Purl Soho
This hat is knit in my "Born on a Monday" color in a sport weight base that I dye infrequently. I can take special orders for this color and I have a new source for a sport weight base that I love. 
 5-hour Hat
designed by me, using my BFL unspun which is now discontinued, any super bulky yarn or 2-ply pencil roving will substitute, free pattern here 

 Glengarry, designed by Vicki Square
the yarn is a generic worsted wool, the contrast is my Strong Arm sock yarn in color "Shulkie" held double. I am out of "Shulkie" right now, but I can do a special order. The color "Hookah You" substitutes well. This is the one non-Julie snapshot that was used 

Big thanks to Julie of Sungazing Photography for taking most of the pictures. If you are looking for a photographer, I cannot recommend her highly enough!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Merino Roving Preview

I love love love love LOVE how the merino roving turned out. Long time readers may remember that I swore off dyeing non-superwash wool because the VM and dust usually found in undyed non-superwash wool was setting off my allergies. Well, after lots of trying I found a good source for very clean regular merino wool. YAY! There is still a few bits of hay here and there, as with any spinning fiber, but it is otherwise remarkably clean. It is so soft and fluffy, easy to dye and has such a good hand. Sigh. 

Listing takes a bit of time so instead of listing these all at once I will be listing a few of these colors every day for the next few days. I usually only list 1 or 2 of each color to start with, so if you need more than 2 just let me know and I'll create a listing for you.

Friday, June 18, 2010


I just listed my newest handspun. It is 100% alpaca, 2-ply, fingering weight, 280 yards for 100g, semi-worsted, drapey and really lovely, if I do say so myself.

I would love to keep this for myself, but that would go against my 2-project rule. I can keep 2 projects worth of yarn I dyed/made myself. Everything else gets listed. If I didn't follow that rule I would end up keeping most of my yarn.

I made an exception to the 2-project rule for the handspun I finished last week. I got my wheel on Tuesday. On Wednesday I made yarn. On Thursday I washed and dried the yarn. On Friday I went to go list the yarn for sale. That's when I blacked out (not really) and when I came to I had this really great scarf made from that handspun. Pictures don't do the colors justice. 

Knitting this scarf represents the first major breach of my self-imposed Knitting the Queue rules. If I cast on for anything new it should have been #5 Huckleberry Ascot, not #31 Baktus. Oh well. Why have rules if you aren't going to break them? The object of KTQ isn't dogmatic adherence to the rules; it's about working on those patterns that I have loved for so long but never managed to get around to.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Mr. Matchless

Meet my new beau, Mr. Matchless! Here is what he looks like from the front.

This is what his backside looks like.
He has a born-on date. See how young he is!
We are going to make beautiful things together!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Spinning Pet Hair

It is people like the woman in the video below that make it hard for people like me to keep people like my husband from spinning our pets' fur.


What is your opinion on spinning and knitting with pet fur? Really cool or super gross?

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Bullet Points

  • This review of Dyeabolical just came across my blog reader. Thank you, JD, for such a nice review of the Cotton Warp and for linking to my shop! It was so lovely meeting JD. Hand-painted yarns haven't quite taken off in the crochet community the same way they took off in knitting (possibly because the excess yardage is cost prohibitive?), so it was nice to meet someone who is such a vocal fan of hand-painted yarns for crochet.
  • I did a massive shop update today. I broke out the light box and shot/reshot several yarn photos.  I'm not sure what I did differently but I am really pleased with how they turned out.

  •  I met a woman last week who grows and processes her own cotton for spindle spinning. She was amazing to talk to. Have you ever tried to deseed a boll of cotton? That's dedication right there. Fellow Knit Nighters and I told her she needed to start a blog and I hope she does. I also hope she comments here to this blog. I forgot to get her name and email! 
  • Speaking of cotton, Modern Marvels did an episode on commercial processing of cotton. You can find it in installments on YouTube. I'll post the first installment at the bottom of this post. I'm fascinated by the electric looms. [I initially wrote "fascinated by the machinated weavers", which is a sure sign I out to go to bed soon.]
  • My spinning wheel arrived today! I ordered it 2 months ago after I was backed in to cutting back dyeing to part-time semi-permanently. The idea was to fill some of that new-found time producing handspun yarns. I did some of that on Scott's Traditional wheel, but it is hard to go fast enough on his old wheel. It just didn't fit my body ergonomics. I'll post wheel pictures soon!

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Green With Indie Wrap-Up

Thank you everyone who came out to Green With Indie! It was a good show. We enjoyed visiting with customers, fellow crafters and artisans and, of course, shopping. I have pictures of what goodies I traded for and purchased over here.

We experimented with the booth set-up. I like the way the cubes worked out this time! I think I need to get a new table cloth that doesn't clash so badly with the turquoise and chartreuse bins, tho.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

All packed up!

I am all packed up for Green With Indie and ready to go. The only thing I have left to do is finalize my inventory spreadsheet, put my shops on vacation and figure out whether to take my camping chairs or folding chairs.

I didn't get any more handspun finished (boo!), but I did pick up the handspun from Laumeier this afternoon so I'll have plenty with me. I am also bringing some freshly dyed felting fiber, some sock yarns, the ever-popular Cotton Slub and I have new additions to my sale bin!

The one thing I probably won't be bringing with me is the new booth sample made from the Cotton Slub. There is no reason why it should take more than a week to finish an XS sweater on large needles knit in stockinette in the round, unless all you do when you "work" on it is lay it artfully next to you and zone out to Netflix Watch Instantly. I intend on heavy duty knitting tonight, but I'm awfully sleepy and you know how that goes.

I need to eat before I return to the smallest adult sweater ever designed. Tonight is lambchops and squash. Potentially yummy! Joy of Cooking says to broil for 5 minutes on each side. I guess I don't know how my broiler works because I broiled them for 10 minutes on each side and they are still pink. Feh. I'll stick with baking, thanks.