Archive for September, 2009

Ulmus, Finished Photos

Tuesday, September 29th, 2009

For days now I’ve been trying to find the right time to take photos of me wearing Ulmus in the finished photos and it’s just not happening. So I’m going to give you the finished photos of me not wearing it…

Ulmus

Ulmus

Ulmus

Pattern:Ulmus by Kirsten Kapur of Through the Loops
Yarn: Cherry Tree Hill Supersock Merino in Serengeti (420 yard skeins, I used 1+ skeins) and Cherry Tree Hill Supersock Solids in Brown (370 yard skein, I bet I used 3/4 of a skein).
Needles: US 6 Addi Turbo Circular
Notes: This is such a fun pattern. The look of the shawl changes so much depending on what two yarns are selected. As an added bonus it uses sock weight yarn and handpaints work great, who doesn’t have sock yarn in their stash? I’m sure I’ll make another in different colors.

ETA: this is the large size. Finished measurements are 72 inches wide by 36 inches deep.

Ulmus

Finally, look at how many colors this shawl will go with! I’m excited to wear it. We’re getting some rainy, cooler weather now so the opportunity to wear wool items is here.

Spinning Breakthrough

Monday, September 28th, 2009

You may have noticed that I haven’t been spinning for a few months now. That was partly because I had spun some fine singles that I couldn’t ply. They wouldn’t balance in a 2-ply, they’d break when I tried to ply. I couldn’t figure it out. So I set them aside for a week. Then I tried again and still couldn’t figure it out.

A couple months went by. I wanted to spin, but didn’t find time. Finally this weekend (starting Friday night) I picked up my spindles with determination.

Spinning

First up was this bit of green/teal/blue blend that was on my Bossie Featherweight. I hadn’t divided the fiber when I started so I had the one single. Last time I attempted a plying bracelet it was a disaster so I quickly decided I’d Navajo ply this. Quick, easy, painless.

Next up, the dark green single (shown in the top of the above photo) that was so uncooperative as a 2-ply. Since 2-ply didn’t work, why not Navajo ply this too? It worked and I think I only had a ply break on me one time. Will the yarn be balanced? I doubt it, but if nothing else it’s a learning experience.

These next two photos below are of the same single, just wildly colored.

Spinning

Spinning

Can you guess? Yep, I Navajo plied this one too. I don’t entirely know what went wrong with my fine singles that wouldn’t ply. I’m guessing they were under-twisted. The good thing is, all of the fibers you see here are from my batch of Wooly Cupcakes from the Wool Peddler. The sole purpose of these cupcakes is for me to practice and experiment.

Spinning

With the three little samples of yarn above, I freed up two TP holders of singles and one of my spindles. Continuing with this thread I jumped right onto a mix of red fibers that I pulled from my pound of Wooly Cupcakes and started spinning some new singles! This time I did divide the fiber into 2 batches because I want to attempt 2-ply again.

WIP Wednesday, 09/23/09

Wednesday, September 23rd, 2009

Sorry to skip last week. I had started a work in progress post on the 16th, but I never finished it. Yesterday I came down with a mild cold so I only worked half a day, and today I’m working from home just in case I’m not up to working a full day.

1. Waving Lace Socks – last week I focused on these at lunch and then I cast off Ulmus, so now they’re coming along nicely. I also tried them on and feel confident they’re going to be wearable.

Waving Lace Socks

2. Ulmus – bound off on Saturday, pinned out to block on Sunday. I’m hoping to unpin later today and get some nice photos of it finished.

Ulmus

Ulmus

Birnam Wood

Monday, September 14th, 2009

A couple of weeks ago I received the third shipment of the Shakespeare In Lace Club by Wooly Wonka Fibers. I’ve been waiting to show it to you to be sure all the club members have received theirs in the mail. This time around the pattern is Birnam Wood inspired by Macbeth and designed by Anne Hanson. The description from the designer is “a rectangular stole covered with tree and woods motifs in rich earthy hues.”

Birnam Wood

Birnam Wood

I love the layering of color in the yarn. It’s solid enough to not detract from a lace pattern, but it adds so much depth. I haven’t yet decided when I’ll cast on for this one, but considering I’ve wound the yarn and taken a look through the pattern. . . .probably soon.

WIP Wednesday, 09/09/09

Wednesday, September 9th, 2009

Here I thought I’d get good photos this afternoon and then I almost blew it when I got busy with eating dinner and making Zucchini Bread. Luckily I think I snagged these photos right before the natural light faded too much for photos.

1. Waving Lace Socks – I’m still torn about whether these socks are going to be a success or not. Seeing them tonight after not looking at them for a few days, I’m hopeful that they will work.

Waving Lace Socks

2. Ulmus – flying along, though I can hardly wait to get to the edge pattern.

Ulmus

Besides my WIPs I obtained a new library card and have been busily requesting books:

Books

I love getting books from the library. Sometimes reading and looking through a book is enough, and other times getting one from the library tells me I really need to buy my own copy to keep.

New Boots

Wednesday, September 9th, 2009

(I’ll try to bring you new WIP photos this afternoon.)

And no, the boots aren’t for me, they’re for my horse…

Renegade Boots

Renegade Boots

Renegade Boots

These are Renegade Hoof Boots. For any of my knitting friends who also read Anne’s blog, you may have seen them there too. She uses them on her horse, Bhen.

Anyway, I’m trying to keep Blondie barefoot (ie. without metal horseshoes), but barefoot horses often have trouble transitioning from shod to barefoot and also with the rockiness of our trails in this area. By wearing hoof boots like Renegades, the horse has foot protection when needed and is barefoot out in the pasture. So far, she’s doing great with her boots and is able to trot out sound!

New Construction Project

Saturday, September 5th, 2009

Here we go again – this time it’s fencing. Looking west from the master bedroom deck you see the trees have been cleared a bit further and the footings have been dug for the 24×36 foot barn. Between where the footings have been dug and where the fence posts start, there will be two mud free paddocks. To the left of the photo the barn will have it’s own driveway connecting it to the private road we live on.

Barn

Turning to the right we see all the way down to the far corner of the pasture. There will be a gate down there that goes out onto part of our property that will be left treed. Once we get around to making a trail through the trees, we will be able to directly access state land.

Barn

Now we’re looking north and you can see how the pasture comes up close to the house. We had some concrete blocks left over from the wall that will get used around the septic tanks and then we can finally plant something around them.

Barn

Finally, this is looking east and you can see the upper pasture.

Barn

Just like the wall that was built last weekend, this project is coming together quickly with the help of another neighbor. R has a tractor with a post hole digger and he spent yesterday evening and a good part of today digging holes for us. Later on this year or next year, my R will repay the favor by helping with his fencing or building projects.

A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Friday, September 4th, 2009

Phew! This is the most complex piece of knitting I have ever tackled because it has lots of stitch patterns, long rows, and multiple charts per row worked. That said, it’s still knitting, it’s still all knit and purl or stitches based on knit and purl. As long as you pay attention to where you are in the chart/row things go just fine.

Midsummer Night's Dream

Midsummer Night's Dream

Midsummer Night's Dream

Pattern: A Midsummer Night’s Dream by Judy Anderson. This was the 2nd pattern/yarn for the Shakespeare in Lace Club.
Yarn: Wooly Wonka Fibers Silk/Merino Laceweight in colorway Love in Idleness.
Notes: Besides what I said above, this is a big shawl. I was very glad it started from the bottom edge because those long rows were the hardest part and the knitting seems to go slowly. The further you knit, the shorter the rows get so progress seems faster which is a reward in itself.

The beads *really* make this shawl. I can’t imagine the stitch patterns without them – it really highlights the pattern and gives the eye something to focus on.

Finally, a note on gauge. My gauge swatch of the edging pattern came out to 3 inches point to point, 6.5 inches tall. I didn’t feel I could go down or up a needle size and get any closer so I used that needle size. My final blocking came out to 3.5 inches point to point, 5.5 inches tall. Overall my shawl measures 44 inches deep and 87 inches wide. It should have been 36 inches deep and 76 inches wide. This isn’t so much of a problem – the shawl is still gorgeous and wearable, but I did run out of yarn because of it. A big thanks to Anne at Wooly Wonka for sending me more yarn so I could finish!

WIP Wednesday, 09/02/09

Thursday, September 3rd, 2009

It’s going to be a short and late post this week.

1. Waving Lace Socks – slow progress because of Ulmus. And no new photo. Honestly, there’s not really anything to see yet.

2. Ulmus – I have been thinking about this shawl for a long time – since the design was first published and despite all that time it has been extremely difficult for me to narrow down the two yarns I want to use. This is what I finally went with:

Ulmus

Both yarns are Cherry Tree Hill SuperSock Merino, one in brown and the other in Serengeti.

And Midsummer really is blocked. I made the mistake of leaving the window in my craft room open over night, which means I’m afraid to unpin the shawl in the morning because it feels a tiny bit damp. So here’s shooting for unpinning and photographing it this afternoon!