Friday, 23 October 2009


I have one new project knitted, dyed and finished.

I have a sleeve of the Tangled Yoke cardigan (IK Fall 07) nearly finished in beautiful Bowmont Braf 4ply that I dyed in deep sea green.

Last night I decided to pull some bright blue aran bfl from the stash (traded earlier this year) and cast on an Elsewhere, after seeing at least two of them on bodies at Eden Valley's meeting last Saturday.

But the computer at home is dead. And really I'm finding it so hard to get organised enough to photograph new things in daylight, and then remember to bring the camera card into work to download the photos here.

My computer man was supposed to be coming on Tuesday evening, but that got cancelled at the last minute - and even though I'd told him a couple of times at least that it wasn't starting up at all he still wondered if it could be sorted remotely. Anyway, once I've finished the Soddin' Pirate Coat (see other blog) he and his son Tom will have to come and collect it, and I won't let it leave the premises until I'm up and running again.

Friday, 16 October 2009

Nearly packed.

Off to Mungrisdale in the Lake District tomorrow morning, tucked away under Blencathra, to teach a workshop at the Eden Valley Guild. Here's most (but not) all of the stuff I'm taking.

Three large checked bags, full of my dyed fibre to sell as I've had several requests to make sure I bring it. The silver padded bag in the foreground is my Little Gem wheel, much easier to pack than my Suzi Pro. It had it's own kate and extra bobbins and a nostepinde tucked inside too. The green box contains several pairs of hand-cards, a couple of pairs of hand-combs, a spare kate or two, spare bobbins, some big cones of thread and various bits of spinning impedimentia. Oh, and spindles. The shoe box is full of various and exotic yarn samples. And lastly the brown paper sack has clean shetland fleece, shetland roving and a few different balls of wool tops. Plus some books tucked away.

Because we've got clothes etc for tomorrow night, plus dogs, plus the bike I hope I'm collecting, there's no way I can take a plastic crate or two of things wot I have made to use as class examples. People will just have to remember the marvellous things I've made (!) and admire the yarn samples.... At least there isn't a tent in there too.

So we're off at 7am at the latest, hoping to get there for ten. Teach all day - Mark will go out with the pupz somewhere. Then off we go to the other side of the country, and spend tomorrow night with Denise and Tim and Deefa and Holly, who will hopefully not laugh at Bil's poor scarred face.

And Ma is leaving for Nepal in the morning too. We popped up this evening to drop off her camera, lipsalve, suncream and various other bits and pieces that for some reason I'm supplying. I still don't think Pa really knows what's going to hit him, especially as we're not around this weekend either.

The cat knows we're going too. I'm being infested as I'm trying to type this. And she'll probably try to smother me in my sleep too, not to mention jumping up and down on the keyboard.

No rowing; withdrawal symptons already.

Wednesday, 7 October 2009

Don't dye in the dark

or at least not by natural light. The colour on the right was my attempt, last night, to dye some superfine merino in Caramel. Unfortunately I have changed the source of some of my dyes since I wrote the recipe and it came out far too orange.

The one on the left is more like it - more brown, not orange, and the white areas were specifically requested. It was an order for 500g, so there's another 200g bubbling away (one left over for sale) and then I've put a blend of greens and the same brown in the other pot.

Merino and alpaca laceweight in Triton. Perhaps a little greener than is showing on my monitor for this photo. I seem to be leaning more towards this blue green at the moment rather than my more usual acid/yellow greens - odd given the time of year.

And this is Steelsheen in the same yarn, dyed for a swap on Ravelry -I have fallen in love with Symphonie multicoloured wooden dpns (due to the lovely Sarah giving me a set for my birthday) so when I found someone offering sizes I didn't have for sale or trade, I was prepared to be generous..... There's two lots of fibre going off with this yarn too.

Tuesday, 6 October 2009

Very sad!

I'm sitting here in front of the computer, finding it hard to type as I'm wearing plastic gloves - there are dyepots bubbling in the kitchen, and if I take off the gloves everytime I don't actually need them, I have to use a fresh pair. Typing with slightly too big gloves is not easy. But I'm alternating between watching rowing videos on Youtube and running downstairs when the soddin' pupz decide to tell me there's someone at the door. Last time it was the neighbours shouting at their dog running off; my two are starting to call 'wolf' just a few too many times now.

There is a lot of rowing on Youtube.

I've just dyed some merino/alpaca laceweight yarn, 3 skeins each in Steelsheen (no-one has yet managed to get the LotR reference here) and Triton. Just in is 400g of superfine merino in a new version of Caramel which I'm hoping is not coming up too red, I need 500g of this for an order I've had in. Then I'm might try and motivate myself to get a bit of superwash done in dark greens for Lancs & Lakes Guild in a fortnight's time, and perhaps something really nice for Ambermoggie in exchange for the bike. Can't wait for the bike.

Sunday, 4 October 2009

Star Mitts

Latest knitting on the train this week. I think I started these on Wednesday and finished all but the thumbs last night. Those were done quickly this afternoon. Now I have no excuse not to finish the green thing or Mark's (even more overdue) brown gansey. However, I had such a lovely time with fine yarn and little needles that I may feel the need to do more.

I just love the uncharacteristic (for me) detail on these - both fine colourwork and twined braiding. The blue and the white yarn is Baa Ram Ewe's undyed BFL sock yarn - I dyed the blue with indigo myself. The green is a very similar yarn that the lovely Sarah dyed for me in various greens last year. This will feature in it's own thing later; I actually started off with a plainer pair of mitts in this alone, but got sidetracked by colourwork.

I can't write a pattern up for this. The cuff is taken directly from Nancy Bush's 'Folk Knitting in Estonia' (Hilja's Mittens) and the basic star from a DROPS sock design. The braid is the standard twined/twisted two-colour one that I will put on anything, given half a chance. I just can't wait for the weather to get cold enough to wear these.