Fiber Friday, Linked Edition

Fiber Friday, Linked Edition

One thing to take into account when trying to match a commercial yarn is the density of the yarn. I think that the Briar Rose yarn may be a worsted preparation. In fact I am certain it is. So, my Shetland in a woolen preparation is a much lighter, fluffier thing!

Before finishing the yarn

Before finishing the yarn

And, while I have matched the diameter, the twist angle, and the WPI of the Briar Rose yarn. My yarn feels much different. Some of you even noted the difference from earlier this week! As I was swatching – the yarn seemed much too light – and it almost seemed like I had more stitches because there were these ripples in the white fabric that really concerned me. I really did not want to spin this Shetland in a worsted preparation and I was brainstorming in my head about a fix, and my first thought was to go down a needle size. Size 3 needles were found and I kept swatching until I had a good bit more of the fabric.

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After finishing the yarn

Before soaking and laying it out to dry, I thought the smaller needle would be the answer, but after giving the swatch a nice bath and letting it dry overnight – I think the fabric on the same needle will be just perfect.

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The washed swatch

The Rolag Production Train is again underway, I hope to have them done shortly (Monday at the absolute latest!) and then spinning can begin.

In case you are not a spinner, but you are Jonesing for a new project, Ravelry has had a plethora of new patterns that are really making me itch to cast on one or ten:

Carol Sunday might have the perfect accompaniment for a Dress #2

The perfect sweatshirt sweater with lovely details – thank you Ysolda

The TTL Friday Fix has been just excellent this month, with things to fill a gift basket and more things to come before the month is over!

If socks are your fancy, these are so cute!

And, I have been spending lots of time thinking about Spice Market, Torquata, and Miss Babs.

And the details on this little sweater really shine!

And, some great thoughts on wool can be found at Rachel of Wool n’ Spinning, after all today is Fiber Friday!

There you go, Gentle Readers, have a great day and an even better weekend. See you back here on Monday!!

More reading, less knitting, some spinning

More reading, less knitting, some spinning

It’s Wednesday and that means Ginny is rounding up the knitters and the readers for her Yarn Along. I am about half way through Raven Black and I really want to get it finished today. I am not totally loving this book, but I have started it and I want to finish it. And, if you are looking for some titles to round out your reading list, yesterday’s 10 on Tuesday hosted by CaroleKnits was all about 10 books that make you D.E.A.R. and the participants all had fantastic book lists – if you are looking for a book to read, head on over there and you will be sure to find a more than a few good reads!

On the knitting front – I seem to have stalled on knitting projects recently. I still have socks in the works, but I have been kind of aimlessly casting on, knitting a few rows, and ripping out. Swatching that is not working – pattern and yarn are not loving each other.

However, this swatching is working out beautifully. My sample is knitting up nicely. I should have this done and washed today. I won’t know that my yarn will match and work completely until I have washed it. Once I am certain that my handspun will work, I will be back carding the Shetland to get ready to spin. This week is supposed to be lovely here and yesterday afternoon saw the completion of the Pergola – and we both lived to tell about it!! I will have pictures later this week, but it will make the perfect place to card that Shetland!

I have been putting the waste wool from the carding process out for the birds, because they don’t think it is waste at all! In fact, they are gleefully snatching it up to line their nests! I know this because of the war we are having with Mr. Robin (who every year wants to build his nest around the light on our porch) thus far, we are winning, but the collection of nesting materials that the wind is blowing all over includes bits of papers from the neighborhood, sticks, grasses, and my wool waste! I would love to let him stay, but the first year he abandoned the nest due to our activity – this is the only door out to our back yard, which we use multiple times a day. I am hoping that our spending more time outdoors will move his efforts to a more suitable place.

And, speaking of Shetland/UK – Ann and Kay are in search of the Knitter’s Holy Grail – Kay is knitting a Kaffe Fassett design and Ann has cast on a Jade Starmore sweater. A knitter’s battle for the ages and a rabbit hole for this knitter to avoid! However, it will be fun to see these projects progress. Kay wants to wear hers to Rhinebeck! What say you Ann? Will you wear yours too? While I might have pulled out my Alice Starmore book, I am in no means jumping on this bandwagon. I have other sweater dreams dancing in my head!

Anyways, enough rambling for today – I have a book to read! Tell me – what knitting successes are you having?!

Make it Monday

Make it Monday

After a very cold, snowy, blowy weekend a milder Monday has arrived. Milder temperatures, softer breezes, and gentle rains greeted my morning.

It was so bitterly icy and cold on Sunday morning I am afraid I may have lost my poppy and yarrow, which were growing nicely and this morning look quite miserable. I could just cry!

But, there was some fun this weekend!!

better april

There was a simple, but delicious Friday Cocktail Supper. A bit of hummus, salami, carrots, grapes, crackers, and Manhattans were perfect to usher in the weekend.

There were new herbs obtained. They smell so much like summer! I am itching to get in my garden, but these little beauties are a nice way to pacify that urge until the weather is more conducive to gardening!

There was some spinning. I think I did a fairly good job of replicating the singles in the Briar Rose Yarn, I won’t know until I have washed the yarn though. I hope to ply and finish the sample skein later today and maybe it will be dry enough to knit a sample with it tomorrow or Wednesday!

And there was an impromptu get away on Saturday night – a change of scenery can have a positive impact! And, confession time – I took knitting, but I did not knit one stitch! There was some discussion of Sheep and Wool in Maryland, and while I know Steve is not overly thrilled about the prospect, I think we figured out an option to satisfy (okay, maybe not satisfy exactly) err, make it work.

On our way home we stopped for lunch at Fathead’s – two words – Buffalo Cauliflower. The sandwiches and beers were fantastic (I mean, a Reuben with Kimchi?? YUM!!) but the Buffalo Cauliflower stole the show! The cauliflower was not at all over cooked, and it was not breaded! I think this might be a fairly healthy option if you are a fan of wings! There was much discussion of how we could replicate this for our Friday Night cocktail suppers. I think we might have figured it out, stay tuned to see.

I hope your Monday is like the weather here today – mild, soft, and gentle.

Slowly spinning wool

Into yarn that yearns to be

The perfect sweater

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Randomly Friday

Randomly Friday

Watching: I finished House of Cards this week, and that is all I will say about it. No spoilers here! And, Netflix added in more episodes of Happy Valley. Plus, The American’s is back on Wednesday nights!

Prepping: For Easter – this involves menu planning, and shopping. Also, I am looking for dessert ideas and I’d love it if you’d share!

Spinning: I have been working through a bit of Sheepspot Clun Forest/Babydoll Southdown roving – it is spinning up so effortlessly. I really am happy with it. I also have been carding a Shetland fleece that I washed up late last year. My plan for these lovely rolags – yarn for Rock the Lobster. They will pair up with the salvaged Briar Rose Fibers yarn from earlier this week. I have a bit more carding to do though before I am sure I will have enough.

Mar 18 collagePlanning: What we will be planting this year and where it will go – crop rotation, you know! I am happy that I have herbs sprouting, and the rhubarb and raspberry plants made it through the winter! And, it appears a salvaged Lilac will have a good year as well.

Celebrating: Since Pi Day and the Ides of March both passed quietly, we did have a bit of a St. Paddy’s day feast – Lamb Stew, Guinness, and Irish Music counts as a celebration in my book!

Discovered: Duolingo and I am working on Danish right now. So. Much. Fun.

Counting: The minutes until the day is over and the welcome to the weekend can begin. There will be Manhattan’s and good eats coupled with the best companionship and conversation.

I hope your weekend starts off just as nicely! See you back here on Monday!

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