Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Introducing BFL Hard Twist

I have a new sock yarn! BFL Hard Twist is a 100% Blue Faced Leicester 4-ply yarn. It has a wonderful hand to it. Gorgeous. Hard, but soft. Round and satisfying. It's a sturdy, satisfying, no nonsense yarn with fantastic stitch definition. It is so different than the merino sock yarns we love, but just as wonderful if not more so!

The Strange Folk crowd really loved the way it felt in their hands. There was much ooohing and ahhhing. I only have 5 hanks left from my initial run of this yarn of the 19 hanks! I tracked down 2 more bags of undyed yarn, which will be here today. Hopefully I can get those dyed up within the next 2 weeks or so and in to the shop. Locals, I will be sure to drop some off with Ewe Knit when I get more dyed. Are there any requests for specific colorways? In the meantime, everything I have left of this line is up in the shop right now.

Monday, September 26, 2011

[video] Episode 4: Strange Folk Wrap Up

Show notes and a blog post for you non-video watchers forthcoming

Friday, September 23, 2011

Customer FOs for August 2011

Super meaty side-to-side ruffled scarf knitted by Annie out of a Dyeabolical sock flat.
OH, THE GUILT! Several of you have noticed that I haven't put up the August Monthly FO post yet. Yeah, see, about that, um, I've been busy getting ready for things and while the FO post didn't exactly slip my mind,  it wasn't exactly on my mind, either. Then Kate and Kara hit me with their twin guilt ray guns at Wednesday knitting, so Thursday I spent day tracking down August FOs, gathering picture permissions and writing this. I still got it done before September was over, so it still counts, right? Right? *g*

The shop is in vacation mode right now while I'm at Strange Folk, which is why I haven't linked to any of the yarns, but it will be back up next week. Here we go!

FOs are Finished Objects. A finished object is any item knitted, crocheted, woven, felted, spun or otherwise transformed from Dyeabolical yarns or spinning fibers into another form (e.g. yarn knitted in to mittens, warp crocheted in to dishcloths, fiber in to a felted object, dyed top spun in to yarn). If you would like me to include your FO in an upcoming post (or if I have forgotten anyone!) email me or message me through Ravelry. Thank you to my customers and friends for letting me share your FOs with my blog readers!

Kara knitted this Amiga cardigan from less than 3 hanks of the old Cotton Slub Sport base (replaced by Cotton Slub DK) in the color "Perfect Turquoise". I love how this turned out. It looks so much better than how my Amiga turned out. That is the difference between a knitter who double checks gauge and tries the sweater on at frequent intervals and a knitter who says "Feh! It will be fine!"
Pattoncy knits clothes for Asian ball-jointed dolls for her shop Squirrel Moon Handknits. I love the colors she pics for the sweaters and they are so well knitted. She knit this sweater out of the Bling base in a one of a kind colorway. Go check out her shop if you are a doll-collector.
Reina made this beautiful lace shawl and an Irish Hiking scarf (not pictured) for her in-laws. Lucky in-laws!
Kkspac improvised these wonderful socks using a simple to-up pattern. She used the Strong Arm Skinny yarn in Flower Shop Inferno colorway.  Check out her modifications on her project page.
Mimahe, maker of MammaMia jewelry and stitch markers, knit this sparkly shawl from this one-off Bling colorway.  Bling has lots of sparkles through the hank and is perfect for either socks, shawl or other sparkle-appropriate wearable. This sweet little shawlette would be a great pick-me up when the doldrums of winter arrive.

Echelon used a 2-ply lace yarn in purple to make this wonderful Terpischore shawl. Beautiful job, Echelon!  I have always loved feather and fan variations. I really wan to make this sometime this winter. Perhaps out of a heavy sock yarn?

KarenK knitted these awesome socks called Burning Rings of Fire from the Strong Arm base in what I think was the very very first prototype test batch of the Annie before I took notes when I dyed. Oy, someone get a time machine and kick me to write that exact recipe down, ok, because Karen's Annie and the current Annie only resemble each other a little bit. ALSO? I'm totally casting these socks on as soon as I get 2 minutes to myself.
KateohKatieohKateohKateohKatieKate (or whatever her name is; I always have to google it *g*) traveled to England this summer. Before her trip she requested that I create a sock colorway for her travel knitting. Her color request was that the color convey the knitterlyness and Englishness of her travel adventures. For instance, "Here's me knitting in a castle!"  "Here's me knitting on The Tube!"  "Here's me teaching a fuzzy-hat Buckingham Palace guard to knit!" So basically, she asked me to request the perfect colorway and could I please make it match England? Of course I would! I asked her some important England questions to help figure out what she wanted exactly. I asked the regular dyeing questions (semisolid or variegated, least favorite colors, etc)  and also the following, "How do you feel about knitting from a sock blank in to self striping yarn? Where in England are you visiting? How do you feel about the Queen? Wills and Kate? Tell me your feeling on the Olympics and earl gray tea. Are you a Doctor Who fan? What is you favorite BBC show?"and got dyeing. Kate named it Crumpets and Crazycakes, which is pretty much my favorite color name yet.
What's this? I have FOs? Unbelievable! *g* I knitted this Iris Goddess of the Rainbow shawlette out of 1 hank of Cotton Warp in the Fire Harvest colorway.

I have had 2 hanks of  of superwash worsted hanging out in a basket for almost a year now. I finally knit it up in to Susan Anderson's Twisted infinity scarf using the Steampunk Themyscira colorway. "Steampunk" is any of my regular clear handpainted colorways with a bit of sooty steapunkishness added to the pot to mute the colors.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Strange Folk Festival

Preparations for next weekend's Strange Folk Festival continue. I'm happy to report that this year I am far less crazed this last week before Strange Folk than normal. Just never mind the time stamp on this post or that I've been working since 7am, ok? It hasn't been particularly hard work. I spun 3 or 4 bobbins of fat singles and plied 5 hanks of art yarns and assembled grab bags of fiber when I needed a break. Easy. [When I wasn't doing either of those two things, I was obsessively cataloging my Ravelry queue, including making tabs for patterns good for highly variegated yarns and patterns good for low yardage art yarns.]

I am going to have less stock than I did last year, but that's ok. I couldn't physically fit all of the stock I had last year in to the booth. I couldn't even physically fit all the stock I had last year in to the car without repacking the car twice and bending both time and space to make it all fit. I will still have plenty of yarn and hopefully have plenty of fiber. I don't have a picture of all the stock, but I will tell you that if you missed the yarns from the last etsy update [pic below], then you will have a chance to buy those same colors on the new BFL sock base at Strange Folk.

My creation

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Episode 3ish : Stressed

Keep Calm & Cast on
In which I:

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Shop Update

I just made a rare Saturday update. There are lots of blingy yarns and 3 sock flats dyed in the Themyscira colorway!

My creation

Friday, September 9, 2011

Y to the A to the W to the N

The Strange Folk Festival is in 2 weeks and I'm perfectly calm*. Undoubtedly I'm forgetting something major. Something more major than being 30 pounds low on stock and a small but very important shipment of Strong Arm being held up, again, at the mill 3 weeks longer than expected. Both of these things are happening right now.

I should probably be a little bit stressed out about both of those things, but I'm not. For starters, I always bring about 30 pounds too much stock to Strange Folk for the space I have available. Plus, the hardest part of dyeing 30 (or 100) pounds of yarn isn't the dyeing. That can be done no problem. It's the rehanking and labeling and even that isn't so big a chore if you have someone to help for a few hours. There is nothing I can do about the mill stress except to vow to never buy from them again, but since Strong Arm is my customer's favorite there is little chance of that happening so why worry?

I've got bigger things to stress about. For instance, is Scott going to have time to make me coffee this morning? He brews his coffee in this crazy contraption that I have yet to use successfully. UPDATE: He did not have time to make coffee and now I'll have to make it myself in a regular drip coffee maker. It will taste perfectly fine, but not exquisite, and I'll have to get off the couch to make it. My life is hard.
Northwest Glass Yama SY-8 40-Ounce Stovetop Coffee Siphon, 1-Unit 
Other things to dither about this morning include whether or not to include cookbooks as read books on Goodreads, which sweater to swatch for and whether or not I'll find the motivation to record a video today. I suppose somewhere on the agenda I ought to decide whether or not to dye any yarn, spin any yarn, hand pull any roving or if I should sit on my couch and do nothing but listen to myself breathe. I can tell you where my inclination lies this morning.

*subject to change at any minute