Sunday, July 22, 2012

Successful Tour!

Today marks the end of the Tour de Fleece. I finished a 2 ply fractal spin today. I'm very happy with it. Its called Bifrost - a polwarth wool by etsy seller Kelpie Fibers. I love how happy this yarn is. I'm not sure what I'll make out of it, but I'm leaning towards mittens.

And here is a group photo of all the yarns spun during the tour. I'm very happy with the lot of them. I didn't spin as much as I would have liked but things like work kept getting in the way. But work I must, if I want to buy fiber to spin that is.

I didn't really set any concrete goals for myself - other than play with the art yarns a bit. I did manage to spin 3 different art yarns. The first one is the beehives that I already blogged about. I also did a whole Loop! bullseye bump as a super coil.

My bobbin wasn't large enough to hold the whole skein so I thread plied the leftovers. I like that one too!

Overall, I'm happy with my yarns. Look for them in upcoming posts as all of them are screaming to be knit or woven right away!

Saturday, July 14, 2012


I've been bitten by the bug that seems to have been going around the knitting community. Yes, I'm talking about the Colour Affection Shawl

The yarn harlot blogged about it. Diane of Knitabulls podcast spoke of it. And its been consistantly in the top 20 of Ravelry's 'Hot Right Now' pattern list since ...well, I'm not sure, but I'd be willing to bet since it was written. Veera V is an established pattern writer. This particular shawl has been well over 4 THOUSAND times on Ravelry!!

Well, who am I to resist. I think its the endless possibilities of colour combos that make this such an appealing knit. I started knitting this on my vacation to Niagara Falls. Kev hand wound the yarn for me. I purchased the three skeins of Mad tosh sock from Lettuce Knits in Toronto.

I thoroughly enjoyed knitting this. There is something soothing about garter stitch stripes. I'm not sure that I will keep this shawl for myself however. I did notice one thing about it when I had just about finished it. The colours, the stripes - the shawl looked very similar to my Daybreak. I love wearing shawls in the winter, but I'm not sure that I need two stripey shawls in the nearly identical blue and yellow colours.

Wednesday, July 04, 2012

Tour de Fleece!

This is the fourth year that I'll be participating in the Tour de Fleece. This annual event has really helped to improve my spinning by leaps and bounds. Its gotten so that I associate summer with spinning now. I just love it!

I started team Newfoundland and Labrador, and I am the captain! Go me! Lol. I'm happy that spinning is really picking up in this province. We have about a dozen or so participants on our team. I'm also spinning for team Loop (my new favorite etsy store!). One of my goals is to spin through some of my Loop stash. I have 5 of her bumps in my stash and they are all bigger than 5 oz. I also want to try a few art yarn techniques.

I tried spinning some coils/beehives. They actually turned out pretty good as I was spinning them, but when they were pulled through the orifice and onto the bobbin, they sort of came apart. I followed the technique as outlined in the book Spin Art.

So I think my problem is that my orifice is too small. Schact sells a bulky flyer for the sidekick wheel with a larger orifice for the purpose of spinning bulkier art yarns. This is something I may have to invest in.

Here is a close up of some of the neater coils. This was so much fun to spin and its definitely something I'll be trying again. I think next time I will try plying it with a handspun single instead of a commercial yarn. I'm not sure that I like the contrasting colours.

Prior to the tour I finished up spinning half of my cupcake fibers sock kit. Here is the resulting skein. My first official three ply! I say first official because I have spun chain plied yarns which is technically a three ply yarn but not really considered a true three ply yarn since all three plies of the chain ply come from the one single ply. Understand? I'm not sure I do, and I'm a spinner. Lol.

I cannot get through a Tour without being inspired by the many spindle spinners over on Ravelry. I'm always amazed at what people can accomplish on such a simple tour. I had to break out my spindles and give it a whirl. Literally. Lol. Here is a photo of Spencer...looking unbelievably worried. He is such a little neurotic guy. I'd love to know what he is thinking sometime.

And the final photo is of my Loop batt that I've spun so far. I'm not sure what I'll do with this one, but right now I'm leaning towards chain plying it to preserve the colours. This one is called 'Kaleidoscope Eyes' and is a repeatable colourway. This means that lots of other people have this exact same colour. The good thing about this is, that its very easy to get inspired by project photos of this stuff knit up on Ravelry. Diane of Knitabulls podcast fame is currently knitting a gorgeous shawlette called Ruby Slippers in this colourway. I'm tempted to do the exact same thing! But who knows when and where inspiration will strike. I do know this.....all of my Loop batts that I've spun up are currently knit up. I think that says something about this fiber. It doesn't languish in the stash at all. It demands to be seen!