Monday, May 12, 2008

Contest Winner! (and Spinning Update)

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*Teaser for spinning update below!

And the winner is...

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Congratulations are in order for laughingmuse, the randomly drawn winner of my Blogiversary Contest : ) Green yarn will be heading your way as soon as I receive your mailing address...

Thanks, everyone, for entering!


One Last Bit of MDSW

Now that I've gifted it, I can tell you about one last purchase I made at Maryland Sheep and Wool: a beautiful turned wood crochet hook made by Bill Hardy...

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... modeled here by Larry, the little green alien guy that Heidi gave me on our ride home from the Maryland Sheep and Wool festival (Thanks, Heidi!):

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This (the crochet hook - don't worry, I kept Larry!) went to the very deserving (and crafty!) friend who cared for my kitties while I was at Maryland Sheep and Wool (my husband was also out of town at the time). It was accompanied by a gorgeous skein of Brooks Farm Solo that I bought at Rhinebeck last year.

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It was difficult to part with, as I completely adore the yarn, but I had no specific intentions for it, and I wanted to give her something lovely to use the crochet hook with. She seemed to like it : )


Spinning Update

Yes, I really am trying to make a dent in my recently expanded spinning fiber stash : )

A few weeks ago, I finished spinning up the squishy, soft Cormo I got from Foxhill Farm (no website). Here's a summary of it's transformation:

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I ended up with about 413 yards (3.67 ounces, although it was supposed to be 4, and I had only a few yards of singles left over) of 16 wpi (light fingering weight) 2-ply yarn. I think it's lovely!

I also plied up the Icelandic wool (that I previously showed you as singles) into about 328 yards (~7 ounces) of 13 wpi (sport/fingering weight) 2-ply yarn. I had about an ounce of extra singles (some of which were created by my friends when they tried out my spinning wheel) that I plied together for about 23 yards of thick and thin yarn (not shown here).

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Here they are together:

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...and for your enjoyment, here is Bug modeling the cormo yarn:

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Additionally, I've spun singles of most of the 4 oz. of "Dublin Lake" Bluefaced Leicester I got from Kris of The Painted Sheep at the Nutmeg Spinners Guild Meeting in April.

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I Navajo plied (for the first time!) 2 oz. of the singles, resulting in about 133 yards of 15 wpi (fingering weight) yarn:

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To Navajo ply you basically make a giant crochet chain with your fingers and add twist to it. Here's a video that helped me figure out how to do it. It was kind of difficult to understand (and to execute) at first, but I think I've got the hang of it now.

As you can see, Navajo Plying largely preserves the different colored sections in the final yarn. I think I did an OK job, although my yarn initially had too much twist (which I didn't fully admit until after finishing it), so I ran it through my wheel again to take a little of the extra twist out. Now it hangs much straighter after finishing (the second time!), although the joins between each looped section are a little more obvious now.

I think it's pretty : )

I plan to make a 2 ply yarn out of the remaining 2 oz. of singles for an interesting (I hope) contrast. I think it would be fun to use both yarns in one project together (if you have any ideas, let me know)!


Octopus Pattern Coming Eventually...

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I've had a number of requests for a pattern for my blue-ringed octopus, and I wanted to let you know that do I plan on putting one together sometime. I made him up as I went along and didn't take great notes, so it will probably take me making a new one to figure out what I did. In other words, it may be a while - but thanks so much for your encouragement to do it : )


Have a great week!

23 comments:

LisaB said...

Love that Dublin Lake, so beautiful!
Those photos of Bug are great. :)

mel said...

Your spinning is so lovely, it makes me want to get back to my wheel. And Bug with a turban skein makes me very happy - though he looks like he is plotting revenge!!

Angie said...

Did I read that right? That's your FIRST try at Navaho plying? Wow!! I am seriously impressed!

Queen of the froggers said...

You know that I am in love with your spinning! Doesn't it look great. Bug is such a cool cat modelling for you like that, Bart wouldn't do it!

Alison Boon said...

So many beautiful colours. What a patient cat you have, so well behaved with yarn. If I tried to do that with Peri there would be an awful lot of house covered in an awful lot of yarn.

Leslie said...

Oh Great Swami Bug, tell us the future!

You're turning into a real spinner, that's for sure.

Nannette said...

Bug has got to be the most patient cat alive. I am showing his pictures to Boris and Gabriel but they are not amused.

Your spinning is beautiful!

SJ said...

Beautiful spinning! My first Navajo ply was was overspun, too. I think it takes a while before you get in a rhythm and get used to; it really is a tricky concept until you're actually at the wheel and can see what's going on.

Laurie (Moo!) said...

What a gorgeous hook! Makes you want to touch it!

Love the cormo and Dublin Lake. So impressed with your spinning.

Bug. What can I say? Too funny for words!

laughingmuse said...

WOOHOO WOOHOO!!!! *does happy dance* You rock! Thank you so much - I will love the green yarns and pet them and call them all George. :)

I absolutely love the Bug photo with the turban-action. Excellent cat expression. And your yarns are lovely! I just started spinning, and I aspire to such evenness!

Disentangled said...

lovely yarns! I especially like the Dublin Lake yarn - such a beautiful color combination!

Ella said...

Seriously? Bug rocks. And I love the Dublin lake colors. They are so gorgeous all spun up!

Jenny said...

Beautiful spinning! I love Kris's Dublin Lake colorway. It's especially gorgeous spun up!

AlisonH said...

I love your cat's expression in that first photo. The Turban-ator is going to get you for that one.

YarnSnob said...

your spinning is wonderful!! I love bugs with his turban, made me giggle this morning lol

Knitting Mistress said...

You know, you are such a talent! And I tune in every day to see if there are new pics of your oh-so-patient kitties... just love the turbine on Bug! He just looks like he is thinking "here she goes again" LOL! :)

The A.D.D. Knitter said...

Yeah, the yarn turban on Bug the Inscrutable Siamese is just about the funniest pic ever!

f. pea said...

All I can say is WOW! Your spinning is gorgeous and if I bump into Laughingmuse someplace I'm going to arm-wrestle her for that green yarn. PUR-DEE! Thanks for the cat modeling photos - too cute!

Anonymous said...

Your cat posing with your yarn is too hysterical! I have a couple of cat's and have often wanted to knit my "Suki Kitty" a caplet. She will hate it of course. But I think she would pose for it.

Your spinning is breathtaking! Love it! Looks like socks are in order.

beth (big geek)

Nonnahs said...

More gorgeous handspun! You really are making me itch for a wheel! Beautiful Navajo plying, too!

Laiane said...

Ah, dear Bug! What a patient model. What is your secret to such stunning Cats with Yarn Pics? I can bribe Chrissy with Feline Greenies, but that only lasts so long.

Your spinning is coming right along -- very impressive.

Oiyi said...

I can't believe how tolerant Bug is.

Deenz said...

All I could think with that first photo...He is Ali Bug-ba! Hee hee hee...

Oh, and the colors in that BFL...yum!