speed/altitude.

Last night I attended my first roller derby bout — fast and super fun.

I also spun up two bobbins of SCF corriedale in the Altitude colorway yesterday.

Boh lounged on the couch.

He also lounged on “his” rug. My parents brought this from my grandmother’s house — she made this decades ago, and even dyed the wool herself! Boh clearly approves.


Here’s a glimpse of the other side of the living room, now that I’m more settled. More soon!

FO: new day (also, zucchini and chard).

This is 150 yards of squishy, shiny, 2-ply made from 4 oz. of Spunky Club corriedale in the New Day colorway. The orange bits are my favorite part.

And here’s the zucchini ricotta galette I made for dinner last night. (I had company.) When Deb posted this recipe recently, I knew I had to make it. I think I’ve made every galette recipe she’s posted, and they’ve all been absolutely delicious!

I’m part of the way through plying the Pigeonroof Studios merino in the chard colorway, and I am absolutely loving the way the colors are combining. So pretty! In fact, pretty enough that I might put off the reading I must finish before my afternoon meeting to ply just a little bit more…

pedaling/treadling.

Yesterday I finished plying the Spunky Club corriedale in New Day. This stuff is hanging to dry, and should be all done by the time I get back from morning yoga today.

And this stuff — well, it just called to me yesterday. This is the first bobbin of Pigeonroof Studios Merino in the Chard colorway.

And this is the second bobbin. This stuff really did spin itself, and I am excited for the squishy 2-ply it will become.

Remember that huge skein of Eco-wool I had on the swift the other day? It is destined to become a Hemlock Ring blanket. Jodi of A Caffeinated Yarn and I are doing a mini-KAL, and already I’m convinced that this project is building my lace confidence. So nice to knit lace on size 10.5 needles! I recognize that this picture doesn’t necessarily reveal ANYTHING about the pattern, but I’m a bit further along now, at row 30. I am just about ready to transfer this to circulars, and then it will be both faster to knit on, and easier to conceptualize. I’ll snap more pictures.

And then there’s this guy. He didn’t do much of anything yesterday…except demonstrate that he really is long enough to take up the entire couch. That’s my dog!

FO: garland.

This is 268 yards of dk-weight navajo-plied Hello Yarn targhee in garland. This isn’t the whole four ounces — more like 3.25, I think. I filled a bobbin, let it rest, and started plying, and I’m not sure if I’ll make another mini-skein just like this, or save the fraction of an ounce for an all-mixed-up leftovers skein. I love this, and I’m starting to feel like I’m getting the hang of navajo-plying! Hooray! (Also, I’m still getting to know my camera, and these definitely don’t do the skein justice.)

Look! A reorganized spinning corner! I walked by this desk on Monday — it was about two blocks from my house. And then I backed up, picked it up, and carried it home. It fits perfectly into this little nook between the door and the heater, and now there is more storage space and work space in my apartment.

This is Spunky Eclectic Fiber Club corriedale in the New Day colorway. When I finished the garland, I just had to get something else started on the wheel…and suddenly I had two bobbins of this stuff. Planning to sit down and ply right after I finishing posting!

Yesterday was farm share pick-up day, and I gathered a whole bag of flowers in the fields. I love being able to fill my apartment with flowers I’ve picked myself.

And I’m knitting something new! More on this project next time.

FO: seasick.

405 yards of corriedale singles in the Hello Yarn Fiber Club colorway Seasick. More swooning over here, folks. These colors are so vibrant! I might have spent a good hour on ravelry yesterday drooling over handspun shawls. So many I want to make! (Also, this is way more fun than compiling a draft reading list for my comprehensive exams.)

I might have started spinning more singles. This is BFL from A Verb For Keeping Warm in Sadia. I’m thinking this might become the contrast color in a handspun daybreak shawl? Happy June!

FO: parritch. (Also, peonies.)

It was humid this weekend, which meant that Parritch took forever to dry. Just before heading out to dinner on Saturday, I considered wearing the still slightly damp skein as a necklace. Awesome, no?

The colors are tough to photograph, but boy, are they lovely. This is 155 yards of sproingy, squishy 3-ply, in the Parritch colorway of some Hello Yarn Fiber Club targhee. I’m tempted to just turn it into a simple cowl, but I might also dig through my handspun pile to see if it might pair nicely with another skein or two so that I can make a bigger, floppier, cozier cowl – or a big comfy shawl. I’ve been inspired by some feather and fan shawls with lots of handspun colorways — and I do have a pile of handspun leftovers to throw into the mix. Just an idea. Also — I am toying with a big handspun pinwheel. Cosy over at cosymakes just finished one and I adore it. Also, I have some wedding gifts to knit this summer, and I’m thinking pinwheel lap blankets. I’ve given three as wedding gifts so far, and my friends seem to really like them. So, onto the eventual to-knit list: pinwheels for weddings, and a pinwheel for me!

Also, I said there were peonies. And there are. I clipped most of the blossoms that were starting to droop down over the driveway, which means there are small jars and vases of peonies in every room. I’ve had a rather exciting twenty-four hours in tenant land, as there is a new/substantial leak that has repeatedly filled my stock pot and prompted a ceiling tile or two to crumble to the ground in the middle of the night (hello, howling dog). I’m hoping the plumber will be here tomorrow. In the meantime, I’m going to keep spinning and enjoy my peonies. Want to see more of those Corriedale Seasick singles?

Be still my heart. This will definitely be a shawl. But which one?

FO: wurm.

Swoon. This might be my favorite hat ever: just the right amount of slouchiness, so soft, and of course, handspun that seems as though it was made for this pattern. I cannot stop drooling over these color repeats. I know I say it all the time, but Adrian over at Hello Yarn works magic. Seriously. Magic. I had 201 yards in the first skein of this stuff, and I managed to use what looks like about 195 of those yards.

I knit the pattern’s size M on US 5 needles. The pattern called for 10 sections of knit/purl ridges, but I did seven and it seemed deep enough, so I began the decreases. In order to get to the final bit of yellow in my skein, I stretched out the decrease rounds by throwing in a few extra knit rows between them, and when I had enough yellow (if there is such a thing), I bound off.

Also, I’m making progress on the Hello Yarn corriedale in Seasick that I showed you yesterday. I’m almost done spinning all 4 oz, and I’m starting to lean towards leaving this as singles and making a shawl. What do you think?

all before eight.

I went to bed before eleven last night, which was heavenly. I’m an early to bed, early to rise kind of person, and I function best first thing in the morning. I love to sleep with the windows open, shades up, so that I rise with the sun. The craziness of the end of the semester, paired with the fact that I’m currently dating someone with pretty much the opposite schedule means that I haven’t really been able to do this for several weeks. (Not that I’m staying up til 3 or anything, but I’ve been trying to compromise. Hard to be social and go out for drinks with folks who meet up at 10 or 11, when that is normally about when I’m climbing into my bed.)

Anyway, I went to bed before 11 last night, and woke up feeling rested just before six. I made my cup of coffee, and curled up with my wurm.

Note the brokeknits-esque nature of this photo. I think I’m going to knit a few more sections before beginning the decreases. I am in love with these color transitions.

The parritch targhee 3-ply is still damp, but I’ll have finished pictures of that soon. In the meantime, I decided to put something else on the wheel. This is Hello Yarn Fiber Club corriedale in Seasick, and I’m planning either to leave this as singles OR to navajo ply this, depending on how it goes and what I want to make with this stuff. It has been awhile since I spun any corriedale, and whoa, this stuff is awesome. Just sayin’.

Here’s a glimpse of some of yesterday’s organizational progress.

And an early-morning, rather drowsy, pouting pooch. He has no idea that in about half an hour we’re meeting a friend for a nice long walk. Tough life, big dog.

granny gear.

You know, the smallest (third) chain wheel on a bicycle with at least 3 wheels (a triple crankset). It makes it easier to ride uphill. I rode my bike across the country seven summers ago. 4200 miles, a handful of mountain ranges, and the realization that Missouri is not flat (I had conveniently forgotten the Ozarks), I was even happier to have that granny gear.

Today I moved my drive band to the “granny gear” (third/smallest whorl) of my Lendrum DT, and it struck me that the set-ups are similar: a smaller chain wheel or a smaller wheel makes something (the pedals/crank on a bike or the bobbin on the wheel) spin more easily per revolution of the wheel, making it (a) easier to turn the pedals on a bike while going uphill or (b) easier to make thinner yarn — fewer treadles required to get the bobbin going more quickly.  Among cyclists (or at least among the hardcore, of which I am happily not a member), to use the granny gear is to be shunned/jokingly ridiculed, while in the spinning world, a smaller whorl equals a finer yarn, and is often what the spinner is looking for as s/he develops his/her skills. (I think I got that right, but if I’ve switched or inverted my bicycle and wheel mechanics, I blame it on the strawberries.)

soulwindow1

This is Soul Windows, the colorway of the April 2009 Spunky Eclectic Fiber Club:  4 oz of 90% corriedale/10% nylon. I’m aiming for sock yarn, and so far, I think I’m on the right track. I am absolutely loving these blues!

soulwindow2

I’m working on a super thin single, but one that has enough twist to be sturdy. I’m about halfway through the first bobbin after about 2 hours of spinning today. It feels like it is taking longer than the targhee, which I’m interpreting as a good sign in the land of my wpi. We’ll see…

Also, for those worried about Boh’s emotional state, I did manage to cast on and work the toe of sock #2. I’m aiming to make more progress before bed tonight so that Boh can sleep soundly. It’s so hard to be a dog.

sock2lacyrib

Today was a good day: I woke up early and curled up with coffee, knitting, and Laura Gibson’s most recent album, Beasts of Seasons (link goes to an npr article with links to places to listen) which is incredible, and the perfect accompaniment to the sound of the rain hitting the plants outside my window. I made good progress on a great book I’m reading, and when the weather cleared up partway through the afternoon, Boh and I went for a run. I puttered around in the kitchen, slowly simmering a big meal of greens, and then I sat down at my wheel to spin until sundown. A quiet, calm Friday.

the candle’s nimble flame.

verbfibernest

The title of this blog post is the name of this colorway of corriedale from A Verb For Keeping Warm’s Woolly Wonders fiber club.

But I should back up: Thank you. Your kind words  and, perhaps, the catharsis of blogging about my hurting, helped me to sit down at my wheel late last night and early this morning.

Thank you.

Now, would you like to see what I spun? I thought so.

verbcorriecandle

verbcorriefullbob

One more, involving me playing with the macro button:

verbfulbobmacro

This is a bit thick and thin, and to my eye, mostly light worsted. I initially thought I would try for singles, but now I’m thinking I should ply this (I filled two bobbins of 2 oz. each) to even out the thickness and to make a sturdier yarn. I’m beginning to understand that singles require more spin to make them sturdy, and I am still learning to balance the pull of the bobbin with the treadling of the wheel (and thus, twisting of the yarn). These colors are hard to photograph, but absolutely lovely in real life. I am being good and letting the singles rest, but I’m hoping to ply this yarn soon…

katie

A morning surpise: a facebook wall scribble told me to take a look on my porch — friends headed west (for good) left a love note and this lovely plant on my stoop long after I was asleep last night. I found her a nice spot in one of my bedroom windows, and gave her a good drink. Here’s a close-up:

katiemacro

And I had to grab a handful of these mums at my favorite farm stand today:

mums

Boh and I went for a great run today, and I may or may not have cleaned out the bottom half of the refrigerator. Keeping busy indeed.

Things to look forward to: my best friend M (who offered to be on a bus moments after I called last week) will be here for the weekend. My farm share starts Tuesday. Inching forward…