At the Wheel

I am trying my hand at some gradient yarn spinning. I got this gorgeous fiber from Fiber Artemis on Etsy. I thought to split the roving and evenly down the middle as I could, then spin each one so that, hopefully, when I go to ply, the colors changes will be maintained. Since starting this, I have learned that I could have done a chain ply but… whatever.

This is, by far, my most even single I have spun yet. It’s still a long way from truly even but I’m pleased with my project. It is also the thinnest I have spun. The singles are still looking rather fuzzy but maybe that is the fiber? It’s a Romney, I believe, which I’ve read is a rougher, fuzzier wool.

I finished one bobbin last night and I have already started the second. I am really excited to see how this turns out so that I can figure out what to make with it.

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Mawata Mittens

I heard that you can knit with unspun silk hankies (also known as Mawata). After watching a few tutorial videos, I really wanted to try it. I quickly ordered up some beautiful dyed silk hankies, check out a pattern book, and today I got started. So far, it’s a bit like knitting with cobwebs; very clingy and light. I am enjoying the rustic looking fabric that is being created. I wanted to share some photos from today.

The bag of 40 grams of mawata

The bag of 40 grams of mawata

One chunk of hankies

One chunk of hankies

A single cocoon

A single cocoon

After drafting

After drafting

The cuff of my mitten, so far

The cuff of my mitten, so far

 

My mawata came from Wooliebullie on Etsy and the color is Peony. The pattern I am using is from the book The Knitter’s Handy Book of Patterns. This really is an interesting book that allows for patterns in any gauge.

The Yarn Harlot made her own pair of Mawata mittens, which inspired this project and she is the one who recommended the book I’m using. She also offers some useful Q&A about using Mawata.

Here is a great video on knitting with unspun mawata.

 

 

 

 

Fountain Shawl

The yarn for my fountain shawl finally arrived! I saw this collection of beautifully dyed, gradient skeins from Knitcircus on Etsy. I knew it needed a lovely shawl pattern to go with it. There was a little snag in getting the yarn here because it took more than 3 weeks just to ship (I won’t even get into that situation). But it arrived, plus a little gift in pretty Butter Lettuce. I have no plans for the green yet, probably a hat.

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The pattern I chose is called Juturna, who is the Roman goddess symbolized by by fountains. The name, symbolism, and style of the shawl all fit with the colors so perfectly. I’m excited to try this out.

 

Yarn Clubs

A discussion at knit night led me to a new discovery: yarn clubs.

  • YarnBox – There’s a new company starting a yarn-of-the-month club, called YarnBox. Basically, each month they are planning to send out a few skeins of yarn from an indie company. The idea being that it creates exposure for the small companies you might not hear of otherwise. You have no clue about the colors or fiber content you will receive. You only option’s are Not to Small and Not to Big, if you wanted to rule out lace or bulky weights. I tried to get a subscription for May, but they were sold out. I’m hoping to get in the June batch. If you visit the Ravelry page for the group, some people have started posting pictures of the May box. I think it’ll be an interesting concept.
  • Magnolia Society– Madelinetosh offers two club options. The Yarn Club is a subscription that sends you a sampling of yarns every month. You sign up, choose your color scheme (Jewel Tones, Neutrals, or Naturals) and then for three months you’ll receive a few skeins of yarn. The other option is the Sweater Club. This is kind of a way to do a payment plan on a sweater’s worth of yarn. You pay by the month, and they’ll send you enough yarn to complete a sweater in increments. In the end, you’ll have enough yarn for three sweaters. You do get to choose the exact colors that you want for each.
  • KnitCrate – These packages include a pattern, enough yarn to complete it, plus a few extra goodies. You can customize by either getting a Baby, Sock, Beginner, Intermediate/Advanced, Indie, or Mini kit, which will determine the types of projects and yarn included. Project examples include a hot water bottle and cover (April 2013) and a starter kit for the BeeKeeper Quilt (aka The Blanket Everyone’s Making). I think this is interesting and, if I attempt the Beekeeper it may be with their hit. However, I’m not sure I would want to subscribe because you never know what the project will be. For example, I really would have no desire for a hot water bottle and cover. But if you’re an all-encompassing knitter, this sounds like a great club.
  • Yarn-of-the-Month ClubThis club sends you two partial skeins of yarn every month. The idea is to knit a 5×5 square of each and you could piece them all together.
  • Sundara – With the Sock Club, you receive 3 skeins of yarn in different bases that you can pay for in installments. They have some seriously gorgeous yarn that I posted about recently.
  • Etsy – A search for “yarn club” will bring up indie run yarn subscriptions for handspuns.

So Tiny

Wee Tiny Sock Kits

  Wee Tiny Sock Kits

I ordered the Wee Tiny Lucky Sock Kit and a Wee Tiny Black Cat Sock Blocker from the Brave Little Knitter on Esty and they just came in. On the left in the photo is the kit for the Lucky sock. The yarn looks like it’s glowing because it is so fuzzy. The bag is little notions to make the tiny sock. In the center is the Cat Sock Blocker and on the right is a pencil and some yarn that was a special bonus. If you figure that the pencil is normal pencil sized, you’ll realize how tiny these really are. I’ve only attempted to knit one sock, which was me-sized, and I hated it. But, I’m thinking that making one tiny sock to hang on my bulletin board might be less infuriating and certainly take less time. Since the seller threw in the extra mini-hank of yarn I’ll most likely use that for the second sock to put on the blocker. The seller also sent me a years worth of Wee Tiny Sock patterns (since there was a delay in my shipping) so if I like this then I have plenty more to make.

The Lucky Sock example photo