Sunday, August 24, 2008

getting ready for Skeinology

Did some dying a few weeks back and finally started working on getting pictures and then knitting up some different swatches. Just dying and winding the skeins started my thought process, how are these colors going to look, how will the colors appear in the different swatches, I don't have an idea!

These 4 studies are dyed from KnitPicks Bare Superwash Worsted Weight yarn. The first three were dyed with Jaquard dyes.

Here's the two color skein:

Here's the three color skein:

Here's the four color skein:

All balled up......there is something satisfying about the rocking motion of rolling up a ball of yarn, and the way they look, you just want to touch them. I love the way the addition of black as the fourth color changes the way the other colors appear.

This is a Skein I dyed with Wilton Icing Dye, the colors appear random, and not as stripes across the width of the yarn, so there shouldn't be any pooling or "bolts" of color.
Here is the random color skein:

And all balled up:

So now to finish knitting them up, I've got the circular swatches done, the small flat swatches done, just need to finish up the wide flat swatches, not what I expected at all! I'll get some pictures up soon, now to really study what is happening.

The hummingbirds are having a grand time with the new feeder, they really are remarkable.

Saturday, August 23, 2008


The study and art of understanding a skein of yarn. Ann thought I need to come up with a catchy name for reading a skein of yarn, there it is.
I've got the yarn dyed, balled up and started knitting, pictures soon.
Oh, speaking of pictures, here is wonderfull Marshall, Amy's new baby, he's wearing his little puppy scarf!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Reading a Skein of Yarn

I started venturing out beyond scarves about two years ago, don’t get me wrong, scarves are a great project, fast, easy, cheap and a great way to practice a new technique or patterns. Never mind the fact that I would be tarred and feathered if the girls in my life didn’t get their yearly Christmas scarf fix. But, it was time to move on.

I researched (and researched) knitting socks. I made many pairs and many different heels until I came across Mary Ann Beatie’s book. Now that I was able to knit the perfect heel I started concentrating on the yarn and patterns for the socks. That’s when I got stuck, eeegads, some yarn knit up something awful. It was the colors all mixed up in a small pattern or pooling with that darned lightning bolt.
That’s when a new yarn shop opened up, I had some cash burning a hole in my pocket from selling my old sewing machine table and thought I’d splurge on a big purchase, maybe a sweater, who knows. I found a most beautiful skein of hand dyed yarn with mustard and turquoise and maroon, I’ve lost the ball band so I can’t tell you what it was, but I fell in love. (I’ve learned since that you always save the ball band with your knitting journal) Took me about a month to finally decide on the pattern for a sleeveless shell and I started swatching. Wow, that wasn’t working, how about this, no, what the heck. Once knit in any length the colors all ran together and looked like mud, ugly mud.

I finally realized I should try this in the round, yep, looked great, but no socks this time, I made a pair of gauntlets (my very first design), there it is. This was really intriguing.
Well, that’s when I stopped buying “purty” yarn and really started thinking about what a skein was going to look like all knit up. That’s what I call Reading a Skein of Yarn. Then I realized that I could dye my own yarn, ya, that's the ticket. I've dyed and painted fabric, this can't be much different. Boy, I love to dye yarn, I will never be able to knit all those skeins up!

Now that I really am going to be an empty nester I thought I’d start a study of just how to read a skein of yarn, I’ve dyed a few skeins of yarn for the Ravelympics that will work.
Keep watching and I’ll post my progress and pictures.


I signed up, I did it, now to follow through. I've posted that I will crochet an amigurumi Pomeranian in the Amigurumi n Toy Toss and dye or overdye 17 skeins of yarn for the Hand Dyed Hurdles.

Finished 13 skeins yesterday, they are posted as FO's and I feel great. Sometimes you just need a goal!

I will post pics later, maybe it's time to start that Etsy store.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

The Akron SnB has come up with a badge of the year club. For every year you are a member, you get a home made pin to show your support. My job was to make the 4 year badges....a bowl full of socks.

A local gal is going through Chemo, made a few hats, the little one is for a doll. I love to crochet, these each took less than an hour to complete. MnM, we are praying for you!

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Well, oldest is off and living his own life now...nobody told me how hard it was going to be to say goodbye!

She's a doll, they are crazy in love, a wonderful life ahead of them.....
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Wednesday, July 16, 2008

goodbye, you've croaked

Here's a salute to my friend Froggy. A big ole hawk has been hanging around, even in the bird bath, I think Froggy was lunch. So long, I'll miss you!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Finally started my butterfly/hummingbird garden, it's been brewing in my mind for many years now. Bee Balm, Coneflower, Russian Sage, Balloon Flower and many more. My baby boy Max helped and spread the mulch, I love it now but can't wait for a few years, it should fill in beautifully! (ya, he's 19, not so much a baby)

The view from our patio, I just love the pond, it is constantly changing. The bonfire pit is full, too bad it has been so hot, now the nights aren't cooling down as much.
Now the birdies have a place for a bath and dinner. That's the Oriole feeder, haven't seen one on it just yet, they are flying around though.

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Summer Critters

Fred and I were sipping some nice wine out on the patio and found a little friend joined us. Look closely in the middle of the picture and you can see a spider. Double click on the pic to get a closer look.

There are so many woodpeckers now, they are so much fun to watch and listen to. We can hear them pecking away in the distance. We finally got an Oriole, but not at the feeder, he was flying around in the tall trees. Goldfinches are flying by so fast, none of them at the feeder either though. The hummingbirds have gotten so bold, they are flying past our heads all the time now.

The little tadpoles are finally out of the water, our little friend Michael caught one for me to photgraph, where did they all go?

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So, my SnB had another tech meeting, this time Stacey taught entrelac, here is the start of a bag to be felted in Noro. I've finished the second side last night and started sewing them together, but I don't want to post a pic. I think this will be one of the gifts for our birthday swap. I'm not sure how it will turn out, that's half the fun of felting, the other half is it hides all sorts of mistakes. Oh, me? Mistakes? Ha

I finally got past the first 10 rows on the Muir lace shawl, after, count them, 22 starts. I've even asked the great yahoo knitlist for help, and of course I got several ideas and recommendations, Thank You!
I've decided to use the little girl hair rubber bands as markers, any of the other markers I have were slipping under the yarn overs and I kept on losing count. I'm also using a dental floss life line, haven't had to use it, but maybe just the thought that I have it helps me to relax a bit. This is a beautiful butter yellow merino lace weight I got at the Sewing and Quiling Expo from French Creek Fibers in Avon. Because I really need to pay attention to what I'm doing, it's hard to sit down and work on it, this may be a year long project!
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Sock Wars End

These are the weapons that "killed" me. At least I made it half way through the war!

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Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Sock, Sock Wars, Socks

Sent off the first pair of socks for Sock Wars. Didn't much care for the way the pattern was written, I finished them before the new/better pattern was posted. Still turned out OK and my target called to say she loved them. They are in Tofutsies at 8sts/inch, a little loose and the toe's aren't my favorite, but I wanted to follow the pattern as much as possible.

Sent off my targets finished SIP's, waiting to see if my target's target is declared dead and waiting in the mail for her SIP's to work on. Still waiting every day to see if I'm dead. No hurry MissM. The lifted increase in the pattern has been quite a bone of contention, I didn't have a problem because it's the same increase used in the Crazy Toes and Heels book.

Speaking of Crazy Toes and Heels, I thought I'd work on these, oh how I hate to wait. Turned the heels last night.
I really like the techniques in the book, I'm getting great fitting socks, look at the beautiful heel. I started the slip stitch below the heel, they are nice and snug. Here's a link to Mary Ann Beattie's site.

This is the split rib, really stretchy and fitting, Can't wait to get these finished, hopefully before the weather turns HOT. I'm really liking the TrekkingXXL, using a 000 needle, slow going!
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Summer will be on us

The Fire bushes and Forsithia are taking over, we had a lot of rain this spring, they must have loved it!

I was worried the Arum was not going to make it, but it is bigger than ever, can't wait to see the blooms

Come on Peonies, how come they take so long, every day I go out and expect them to be blooming.

Even the Cornflowers are happy, I do love this time of year!
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Color Everywhere


Corral Bells

Lily of the Valley

Bleeding Hearts are on their way out.

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