Friday, September 21, 2012

Testing

I have another yarn to add to my list of favorites!
I'm making a Lattice out of Blue Moon Fiberarts BFL Sport and I'm loving it to bits. It's fluffy and the smallest bit fuzzy, which makes it a very cozy yarn. The color is somewhat between the two pictures.
This is a test post from my phone.


Sunday, September 16, 2012

As I Ramble

I have been super busy lately, finishing up projects that may or may not have been languishing for a year or more. I've challenged myself to not cast on anything new until the yarn for Carson arrives, which should be any day now. I can't wait! So, to keep myself busy I've hauled a few projects out of hibernation.

First up, Peak's Island Hood by Ysolda. It was a lot of fun to knit, and only got shelved because I got to the last 4 inches and thought I might run out of yarn (I didn't, 17g left). So that makes sense. What? No, it doesn't! WTH, brain, wth. I made it with 4 balls of Rowan Cocoon, color Shale. This scarf/hood is lovely, squooshy and probably insanely warm. I can't wait to take it for a test drive this winter,


Buttonwillow was a lovely 6 day knit, and a stashbuster too! One skein of A Piece of Vermont Merino Sock (440 yds, 13g left), lovely hand dyed multi-shaded blues. The knit crochet bindoff was rather a pain, and so many pins! All The Pins to block it, but it came out quite nicely, I think.



I got new (ok, my first) business cards! They're from Moo.com, and completely awesome. You get to pick your own pictures to go on the back, and I was really impressed with their design software. It was really, truly painless to use. I only got a sample pack, but I'm sure I'll be ordering more from them in the future.


Because I didn't want to put stirlingknits.blogspot.com on my fancy new business cards, I got my own domain! This blog (and rss feed and whatnot) can now be found at stirlingknits.com! Now that it is mine mine mine, I have the potential to do cool things with it. Potential, mind you. It's unlikely anything will change in the near future. :-)


This weekend was adventure filled! My sister Katie just moved to within commuter train distance from us, so we went to visit them for the weekend- their housing situation is odd and temporary, so we brought our tent out for the first (and probably last) time this season. Saturday was C's birthday (4 years old!), so we went to the NY Ren Faire and hung out with fairies and crazy people for the day.

I finished Grumpa-polywog-asaurus just in time to be the perfect present for her. We had fun taking pictures of her smiling and torturing the poor thing to within an inch of its life. Kids are hard on toys!

5 of 5
 Her brother A wanted to get in on the picture taking action.

4 of 5
 My personal favorite part of the Ren Faire was the Birds of Prey demonstration. This owl was totally badass, and had a personality like a feathered cat. Many amusements were had at this fact. It was also absolutely beautiful, and has made itself at home at #1 on my list of 'birds to have once I get my falconer's license', whenever that is.

Eurasian Eagle Owl
 The condor was pretty awesome as well, and very impressive with its 10 foot wingspan.

African Condor
 The winner for largest bug found this weekend goes to the Praying Mantis! Found on the archery range, I moved it out of stomping range of the kids, and got a pretty sweet picture.

Praying Mantis
Whew! I think I'll go sleep for a couple days after all that excitement.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Gifted

I have pictures for you! These two projects have been finished for a while, but are now living with their intended owner, so there's no chance of spoiling the surprise. :-)

The two skeins of Shibui sock, from this post, have been completely used up, but not as socks. One skein went towards these fingerless mitts:


The other skein, combined with one skein of Malabrigo Sock, became this shawl:



They were both a lot of fun to make, and now reside with my mother.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Spoils





49 skeins of Lettlopi
10 skeins of Einband
10 plates of Plotulopi
500g of washed fleece
=4450 grams (9.8lbs) of fluffy goodness, plus 450g of chocolate and an awesome book by the name of Knitting with Icelandic Wool.

Customs didn't say a thing.

:-)


Thursday, July 5, 2012

Tour de Fleece

It's here! Again! Fluffy spinning happy time, where everyone on the net and only me in real life are talking about spinning and pretty colors all the time!

Today is day 6, so I've got some catching up to do.

Day 1
This was our last full day in Japan, and we took a train from Kanazawa (you must go there, it's amazing) to Nagoya (where the airport is). We found a sake bar in Nagoya, and ended up hanging out with a group of Japanese guys in their 40's-50's who kept asking us questions in drunken broken english and buying us drinks. It was a pretty awesome night.

Aaaannny way, spinning!

On a train, in Japan. It was pretty awesome. Faux Cashmere on my bird's eye maple spindle.

Day 2
Consisted of 20 hours of travel, going halfway around the world. No spinning occurred as I forgot what day it was.

Day 3
I started with this:
5oz of Shetland in Burnt Orange from Corgi Hill Farm.

Spun half of it:

Day 4
Spun about an hours worth of the second half of Indian Summer (BFL Humbug, CHF). Took an accidental 12 hour nap, missing Pathfinder (sadness!). Jet lag does some weird stuff sometimes.

Day 5
Finished Indian Summer, which is now waiting to be plied.

Day 6 (today)
I will begin by plying Indian Summer into a 2-ply. Weight and yardage to be determined. After that, who knows? I've got a big pile of things to be plied, so I might continue with that.

Happy Spinning!

Friday, May 25, 2012

Franken-gyvered Candle Making

I have Franken'd a candle! It took about 10 minutes, a jar, a d6, some string, wax drippings and a pot of boiling water.

To explain a bit more, we like candles. We use candles almost every day, and that leaves us with a lot of candle ends, drippings and similar waxy non-usefuls.

Candle remnants
I recently got a spool of wick from amazon, so I tied one end to a d6 die that was floating around the house (to act as a weight) and then cut the wick to about 1/2" over the top of the jar. I then filled the jar with dead candle bits and put it in a pan of boiling water.


I used a chopstick to poke the wax bits down and added more wax until it seemed full enough. At that point there was a pool of liquid wax and a wax-burg that was attached to the wick about halfway up. If I'd been a little more on top of my game, I would have made the wick long enough to tie around a pencil or some stick-like device  to keep the wick straight. I was not, so instead I brought the jar over to the AC, turned it on high and held the wick straight while it cooled (which took all of a minute).

Ta-da! Practically-instant candle. I'm excited. Now, I just have to wait til tonight to see how well it burns.

I still have designs on making candles and soap from scratch-scratch, but this little project fills my homesteading needs quite nicely for now.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Spring

Not too much has been happening on the knitting front- I've been *almost* disinterested lately, but that's probably just the rain talking. Actually, now that I think about it, I think it's the fact that I looked all my WIP's in the face...and almost passed out.


This was all of my WIP's as of a couple weeks ago, all 25+ of them. I have, of course, started several more since then and finished a couple as well. I didn't include the ones that just needed ends weaving in...that adds more than a few. That's enough to make anyone feel overwhelmed, and I'm not helping myself any by completely ignoring them. Someday I'll come up with a plan to deal with them all. Someday.

In the mean time, I'm taking another stab at sock knitting:


I've touched upon my love/hate relationship with socks in the past- I love having knit them, but I hate knitting them. Major sock problems include: casting on, Second Sock Syndrome, grafting, tight cast-ons, a zillion measurements to make them fit right, picking up stitches...the list goes on and on. So this time, I'm changing a few things.

Problem
Casting on. I don't feel like casting on very often because it's fiddly and annoying and casting on a *second* of a thing after I just finished the first is like trying to swim through mud.
Solution
Start both of them when I am in a casting-on-mood. Ta-da!

Problem
SSS. I don't like doing things twice, especially in a row. If I've done 1, then I've done it and it's stored in my experience box and is no longer novel, entertaining or challenging. It's sort of like doing dishes, or laundry- I did that yesterday, or the day before, or earlier today and nobody wants to be doing chores continuously for the rest of forever.
Solution
Two-At-A-Time. If I work on them at the same rate during the same knitting spell, it's more like knitting one very very long sock. 2 rows on sock 1, 2 rows on sock 2, etc. My brain likes this better, and I'm just going to go with it. You might notice that I've got them on dpns. I tried magic loop and 2 circs and I really can not stand it. Dpns are my poison of choice unless I can get a truly circular thing on circs.

I'll let you know how these go. I'm making good progress on them so far, and I don't hate them yet. Wish me luck.

Given the relative lack of knitting, I've gotten lots of stuff done around the house. I feel spiffy and organized. We might have invited people over, which might, *might*, be the only reason the house is clean. Whatever the reason, it still feels good.

-Found, tagged and wove in ends of some samples for work. I've been slacking a bit, so it will be nice to turn these in.

-Between the two of us, Jude and I managed to get the end window wall fully primer'd. Poor wall has been off-white since we moved in. Slowly but surely we will get this whole place painted. Very slowly, it seems.


-I took a full inventory of all spinning materials in my possession and rearranged a few shelves in the process. The interested and brave-hearted can see the full list here.

-2 of 3 awesome glass shelves have been installed in the bathroom. It's a pain to put them up, so we only do 1 every few weeks.

-Lastly, a gratuitous shot of my lovely organized shelves and completely clean floor.

Happy spring!

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Photo Update

VT

Vermont knitting buddies

CT

Bunnies Everywhere!!

Friendly sheep is friendly

New sweater, some assembly required

I can fit one of these in my apt, right?

:-D