Saturday, June 13, 2015

You Spin Me Right Round

The Husband loves me.  Seriously loves me.  How do I know this?  Well...

I can't remember if I told you that a couple of months ago, I talked him into swapping me my iMac for his Macbook Pro.  My thought was that if I had a laptop to sit in a comfy spot with (rather than sitting up to my desk with the iMac), I'd write more blog posts. You see how that turned out.  Anyway, he moved a TON of files between the two and made it happen.  Fast forward to three days ago and I asked him how much he loved me (always a good opening).  He immediately figured out I was about to ask for something big (he's very smart that way), and I asked if he'd be willing to swap me back.  You see, not only did it NOT motivate me to write more blog posts (it seems exhaustion at the end of a work day is not contingent on what type of computer you use), but I also missed my high resolution ginormous iMac screen.  It really is a thing of beauty.  Bless his heart, he only let out one big sigh and half an eye roll and dutifully transferred all of the files back where they were originally over the last couple of days so now I have my iMac back.  I did have to promise I wouldn't change my mind again, which I won't.  I think.  Just kidding, honey...

The color of this graphic is not an indication
of my preferred grandchild gender.
I just thought it was cute.
Seriously, stop it.

In knitting news, there is none.  I'm avoiding blocking my Steampunk Pullover because I'm afraid the colorwork section will not block out like I hope (read: won't cover my shoddy work) and I'll have to pull it back out and re-knit it, which will be a colossal pain and I just can't think about that right now because, holy cow, my first grand baby is due in less than three weeks and how could I possibly focus on a sweater??  I'd knit more grand baby stuffs but I have drawn the line until the wee one makes an appearance so I know if I'm doing baby boy knitting or baby girl knitting.  I've been singularly uninspired by the selection of unisex patterns available.  I've browsed Ravelry and added pattern after pattern to my queue of small projects but I can't seem to settle on anything.  And so, I've been working on a children's sweater for charity that I started a while ago and is enough to at least satisfy my itch to do something.  After that, I may just do a generic baby blanket in order to have something for the next time a co-worker gets pregnant which may be anytime since it seems to have been an epidemic in the last two years I’ve worked there.  

Aside from that, I had a report from my son yesterday that my DIL and the baby are doing great!  I am a bit excited.  I know I needed to tell you that because I hide it so well and I'm sure you couldn't guess it.  But I am.  Excited.  A lot.

The other thing I've worked on is my spinning.  My persistence is paying off, as you can see in the picture below.  

Yes, those are what you think they are.
Hey, they work and they're in plentiful supply.

The middle roll is my first attempt.  The pinkish-purple one on the right is my second attempt.  And the one on the left is my last attempt.  You can see the yarn is getting more even.  I've kind of stalled on it though, as I'm having trouble sitting up in a position where I am able to park and draft without developing a terrible back ache.  If any of you spin with a drop spindle, do you have any suggestions?  

If I don't cast on a new project soon...  Ba-BEE! Ba-BEE!  Ba-BEE!  :o)


Wednesday, June 3, 2015

To Spin, Or Not To Spin...

I spent last weekend with two great friends at the Magnolia State Fiber Festival.  It. Was. Awesome.  Seriously.  Not only did I get to take two great classes, I also shopped for fiber, stayed in a lovely B & B, and ate so much my doctor would have an absolute fit. Sad thing is, I only got one picture.  That’s right, just one.  And what is it of?  Yarn?  Fiber?  My classes?  My good friends?  No, dear readers, it was of this:

Walnut Hills, I love you.

My cheesecake.  Turtle cheesecake from my dinner at Walnut Hills (which we go to every year).   I KNOW, right????  It’s like a whole, personal cheesecake just for me.  I couldn’t finish it.  *sigh*

Let me repeat:  It. Was. Awesome.

I took two classes, the first on Fair Isle knitting with instructor Donna Peyton.  She was such a good teacher, that before we left to come home, I’d finished this:

Look!  No puckering!  Woot!  Unfortunately, I did not take the class in time for this:

My Steampunk Pullover.  It is puckered.  You can see from the picture that there is something decidedly wrong with the neckline.  Or rather, I think the neckline would be fine if the colorwork wasn’t puckered from my pre-class stranded colorwork skills.  Will I pull it out and reknit it?  

Heck no.

I am still hoping for the best with blocking.  I’d appreciate your warmest woolly thoughts sent in my direction for a favorable outcome.  If not, I WILL be forced to pull out the neckline and see if I can make it look like it was meant to fit a human instead of some sort of alien creature with no shoulders…

The second class I took, also by Donna Peyton, was on drop spindle spinning.  It was fun.  And informative.  And didn’t help my lousy spinning efforts one bit (no fault of Donna’s - she was awesome).  I think I have a spinning disability.  It’s not just about thick and thin yarn.  It’s about not being able to keep the darned drop spindle spinning, as well as not being able to keep what yarn I DO spin from slipping off the spindle.  I hacked my own spindle last night and placed a notch to help prevent the problem, but then I developed a new issue with actually breaking the yarn (she sighs with deep frustration).  

I MUST learn this skill.  Why, you ask?  Because of this:

This was my haul from the festival.  Yes, I was so optimistic about the class that before I even took it, I bought this absolutely lovely and incredibly soft and yummy Corriedale roving.  I HAVE to learn how to spin this fiber.  If not, I’ll have to pull it out of my stash at least once a week to pet it.  How sad…

You’ll notice my haul was relatively small this year.  That’s because my favorite vendor, Denise with Lost City Knits, was unable to attend the festival due to a family emergency.  She was sorely missed and she’s on my heart as I write this.

I had a wonderful time and was inspired all over again for my knitting (and spinning - sort of) and I can’t wait to see what’s next.  Colorwork is definitely in my immediate future!