Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Finishing the Finn

Whew, I've been working on this for quite a while. This is from A Verb for Keeping Warm Fiber Club, Finn Equilibrium. I'd never spun Finn before, and since I'm not exactly a pink person, I was hesitant to start. It arrived in two strips of roving, one peachy pink, the other a blueish grey. It took me a while to figure out what I wanted to try, and I wasn't sure I would like anything. But, I have to say, Kristine has done it again. On first look, I'm kind of not liking the combo, then, as it winds onto the bobbins, it wins me over. Once I plied it all, I was totally sucked in. I'm quite curious now to see how it knits up.

I had just read an article in the recent Spin Off on blending colors while you draft- and since I don't YET have any carders, I decided to give it a shot. I divided each color in half. The first half of the fiber was blended and drafted in a very spontaneous manner. I pulled snippets of one, then more of another, and drafted them up, then spun 'em up. That first bobbin had an overall look of being bluer. The second half was drafted with relatively equal amounts of each color. I just divided the peachy into strips, the blue-grey into strips, and drafted one of each together.

I had one bobbin of each, then plied the two together.

My spinning buddy Kristin, who is also in the Club, spun her Finn first, and reported that it really plumps up. SO, I soaked it all except one little skein, and once it was dry, took a comparison shot. The top strand is right off the bobbin, the lower is the finished Finn. Amazing! Like one of those sponges you buy flat, then as you get it wet, it changes dimensions in a wondrous way.
Anyway, I'm not sure what I'll do with this Finn, but I'm liking it.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

more twistin'

Ok, I forgot to add this to the earlier post. Here's the back, while I was working on it. I've got the sleeves, the back, and am getting ready to get started on one of the fronts.
One of the problems is, this yarn is a single. Worked up on the size 4 needles, the fabric seems to be fairly straight. I do like the picots, but those twisted stitches that form the "Ropes" kill my hands. After 3 or 4 hours of twistin', I really do want to shout ENOUGH ALREADY!!!! But they do look nice....

Twists and Shouts

Before the new year, I began a project for a friend. She's an ex-knitter(I know, hard to imagine) and really wanted a black cardigan. She also had yarn in her ancient stash that she really liked, and thought it would work. I found the Ropes and Picots Cardigan, by Laura Grutzeck, in Interweave Knits Winter 2008. I'd give you the link to Ravelry, but I'm still a techno-dolt, and don't know how to do that. Well anyway, the recommended yarn is Rowan Scottish Tweek DK, and while her black tweedy stuff is a single, I got gauge, and she liked how the swatch looked. If you recognize the mystery yarn, please let me know. I am kind of curious.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Daily Fiber is more than a dietary issue

Ok, so last year I had grand intentions to try and document my obsession with fiber. When I see that February posting, it's hard to fathom how much has happened since then. Shortly after posting about my new sweater love, I was diagnosed with cancer. Speedy surgery, hospital stay, a few weeks to recover, then months of chemo. After all that, the climb out of the hole I found myself in... Enough of that, and now, on to the Good Stuff.

One of the ways I made myself feel better was a Visit to the Stash. I was a pretty new spinner, and yes, at the 08 Stitches West, had picked up some lovely little bundles to spin from Tactile Fiber Arts, A Verb for Keeping Warm, and Toots LeBlanc. I couldn't spin for a while since I had abdominal surgery, so I just admired the gorgeous colors, smelled the fiber, you know the game. After a couple chemo treatments, I couldn't knit easily due to the neuropathy in my hands, so I admired some of the yarn stash, waiting for the right project. It all made me feel so much better, even if the relief was temporary.

At some point I needed a fix, and decided to dive in. I screwed up a lot of projects, frogged em, and started another. My attention span was short, which gave me a good excuse to continue on that path for a while. As my hands improved, I started spinning. I truly believe the spinning helped me to find a calm, peaceful place that I sorely needed.

Well, anyway, I'm going to try and start this all over again, and see where it takes me. I've got some FOs to write about and some photos to post, along with some WIP. Back soon.