Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloween!

I think this year's kid total hit an all-time low at 13 kids. I guess that's ok...more chocolates left over for me!

I did try to count the wraps as I was winding this on the Niddy Noddy, but lost track. This worked out to be 20 WPI.

Pithy details - 100% Tussah silk, hand painted roving, hand spun and Navajo plyed.

I think I may have a yarn problem...16 skeins of Silky Wool arrived in the mail today. No, I don't really have a project in mind. I might want to save this for a weaving project. I hear weaving will use up a lot of your yarns.

And finally! I'v finished knitting the pieces for the grey cardigan! Now, I have to sew everything together and knit the band.

Thankful for:
1. BC Lions playing on Nov 18th instead of Nov 11th. This means I get a nice long weekend.
2. Not having to walk home from the bus stop today. Somehow, they lost a bus. Go figure.
3. Halloween chocolates.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Phew! It's done!

The never-ending silk has been spun and plyed! Finally! It just needs to be set and whacked before I can use it. I'll do that tomorrow & post some pics.

One thing I'm noticing is that I don't seem to need the fancy bobbins & flyers for spinning. I used my big fat humungeous plying bobbin and flyer for my silk and it turned out great. The silk looked tiny and out of place sitting on my big bobbin but it was the only bobbin empty at the time.

Thankful for:
1. Husband's high blood pressure was found out before it could escalate into something worse.
2. Today's sunshine.
3. Good friends at work.

Monday, October 22, 2007

24 hours is just not enough hours.

There really isn't enough hours in a day to accomplish everything I need or want to do.

To do list for this past weekend:
1. Finally finish spinning the pink silk.
3. Ply the pink silk.
4. Work on the undulating twill sample.
5. Finish the grey cardigan sleeves.
6. Work on the background for the Fibre ATC swap cards.

The only thing I worked on this weekend was spinning the pink silk and I didn't even finish that. I have another 1.5 feet of roving left to spin.

I think I either need longer days or less sleep. Or win millions of dollars and retire now.

Thankful for:
1. Having time to do the fun stuff instead of laundry.
2. Homemade soup on cold rainy days.
3. Computer is coming home next week. :)

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Don't forget to breathe...

This is scary stuff! I followed the directions for warping the loom, back to front, and I think I'm at the part where I take the lease sticks off. Everything is tied and I've woven a couple rows of "sticky" yarn. Why do I have this horrible feeling that everything will fall apart when I do that?

The hardest part was threading the heddles in the proper sequence. I spent two hours last night and only did 23 threads out of 100. And then I discovered I was out of order. That's what happens when you do things late at night. I left it for today to redo. Tonight, it took two hours to do the whole thing. It really helps when you write out the sequence nice and big and put a mark whenever you finish a set.

Thankful for...
1. Remembering to bring my unbrella today.
2. Good day at work.
3. Inspiration for my Halloween costume - now I need to find a top hat.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

coffee addiction

I've always suspected this to be true...

We've been buying our beans from JJ Beans for eons. We buy so much that we qualified for the wholesale price. Considering there's only the two of us drinking the coffee, it's kinda scary. I grind the beans every morning and pack that in an airtight container to bring to work. I have a little french press in my office for that perfect first cup of coffee. Yes, I'm a little obessive about my coffee.

Thankful for:

1. Hardcopies of your project when you accidently save the wrong file over the work you've spent 2 weeks doing.
2. No one laughed and called you an idiot for the above.
3. Fibre buddies to take your mind off your stupidity.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Black holes

Sleeves are the black holes of knitting. How else is it possible that you can knit and knit and knit and still no closer to finishing? I measured the sleeve on my grey cardigan. I needed another 1 1/2" to go. After what seemed like hours of knitting, I measured the sleeve again and I'm 2" short. How is it possible that you can do all that knitting and have less sleeve than before?

Note to Spiny Bunt:

I read all kinds of comics. My husband collects them. He (and other comic book fanatics) calls them graphic novels. Currently, I'm re-reading all the Neil Gaiman's Sandman comics. Favourite manga - Bleach and Full Metal Alchemist.

Thankful for:
1. Halloween chocolate
2. Having things to be thankful for.
3. My crazy dog

Sunday, October 14, 2007

The perfect Saturday

A little bit of silk followed me home from Granville Island on Saturday. Y'know, it's really hard to take good pictures of silk without doing a lot of work. Didn't feel like setting everything up so the picture is a bit overexposed.

A group of us (Twisted By Choice) caught the demo at Opus by Vivian Zuba. The two hours flew by so fast. She covered so many different techniques, my mind was absolutely swimming at the end. She makes you want to run home and create. Permission to play, as she puts it.

...AND...I finished my weaving sampler. It's off the loom, hemstitched, and washed. I think I would like to do another one but with one colour for the warp and a different colour for the weft. I found it hard to see some the different patterns once the piece was washed.

This Tuesday night, we're discussing our next project. Homework is to bring yarn from home. It was interesting how I'm looking at my stash with new eyes. Going through yarn, wondering if this or that would be good for weaving.

BTW...I think the Darn Pretty needles may just be the best needles I own...and I own a LOT of needles. Even better than my Colonial and Noble needles (both I love), and much better than Crystal Palace! The colours are beautiful...mesmerizing. These needles are PERFECTLY made, smooth and beautifully finished. Not one groove out of place. Knitpicks is now selling something similar and are much, much, MUCH cheaper but I don't know what the quality is like.

Thankful for:

1. Sunshine today
2. Comic books
3. Coffee

Friday, October 12, 2007

Darn Pretty Needles!

And they really are darn pretty! (I know I've said this before)


2.75mm DPNs - Bubblegum

4.5mm circulars - 60" cord - Carnival

3.25mm circular - 60" cord - Hazelnut

The Darn Pretty Needles are handmade from Grafton Fibers. I asked Tom to surprise me and he did.

Today's Thankful list:

1. Well, it goes without saying, my new needles. :D
2. 3:30pm on a Friday afternoon - It was a very long week.
3. Dinner was ready by the time I got home.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Thankful for...

1. The high Canadian $$ (more yarn for your bucks).

2. Friends to go on field trips with.

3. My spinning wheels.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Monday, October 08, 2007

Things to be thankful for...

A few nights ago, I was watching a documentary on a study of how people's attitude and frame of mind can affect their health, physically and emotionally. Each night, one group would write down things that they're thankful or happy about, a second group would write down complaints, and the third group wrote down whatever they wanted. No surprise that the first group had a better outlook on life and was generally happier and healthier.

So, here are three things I'm happy and thankful for:

1. My hands still work - sometimes they ache when I knit too much but they work.

2. My family - no matter how bizarre my hobbies and interests may be, they say go for it.

3. Pumpkin pie - especially one I didn't have to bake. :D

Where has the day gone?!

Husband went golfing early this morning and I was supposed to weave until my eyeballs fall out (or until I get to the end...whichever came first). I thought I would spent a few minuts on know, take a few pics of my stash yarn or something. Next thing I knew the morning was gone and it's time to start Thanksgiving dinner. I did managed to do a bit of weaving but nothing spectacular.

Happy Thanksgiving to one and all!

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Look! I'm weaving!

Heh! The first part of converting non-fibre obsessed family members is to have them try it. My son was watching me work on my sampler and wanted to give it a go. He thought it was fun. heh!

Now, all I have to do is to get my husband to try. Actually, I think he's already resigned himself to the fact that there will be a loom in our future.

It's slowly making sense, I think. I'm trying to keep the edges nice and neat.

Ok, this is what I've learned so far...

1. If I pull the wool snug so that it pulls the last edge warp thread in as I put the shuttle through, when I squish it down with the beater, it will make a nice edge. The trick is to keep it consistent.

2. Same with beating - keep it consistent and use even pressure.

3. The pattern one is trying to achieve is a combination of raising the warp threads in sequence to produce the weave pattern. The more harnesses you have, the more possiblities for patterns.

This is fun! :D

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Got my Ravelry invite!!

One minute, there was 885 people ahead of me and next minute, my Ravelry invite came! And I'm there as LavenderKnits. Lavender was already taken. The place is overwhelmingly huge! It's everything people said it was and more!

I'm not sure I'm ready to confront my entire stash and catalogue everything but it would be fun to go through my stuff and see what I have.

Monday, October 01, 2007

Good news/Bad news

Good news is that Burnaby Knitworks is having a major sale. Bad news is that it's their closing out sale. When I saw that, I couldn't believe it! I had to phone the store to confirm. Yes, they're closing out after 12 years. I'm hoping this isn't the down trend of knitting. I've seen this happen so many times. Knitting makes a comeback and stores open all over the city. A few years later, they start closing out. This is the second LYS in the past year.

Another bit of good news is that Urban Yarns has opened up their second store in Edgemont Village in North Van. Good for them.

Football first

I can't believe I watched the whole game of football on Saturday! My boss hosted a suite at BC Place & we were invited. I think if one has to be there for an entire game, that would be the only way to do a private suite. The food was good and drinks were plenty. If I had to endure the whole game in the stands, I would go stir-crazy. As it were, it was bearable because you're not limited to sitting in the seats but can move around the inside of the suite and talk to people. I had to walk around a lot. Football minutes can last a lifetime. I had my knitting with me but these business types would probably not understand so it stayed in my bag.

It's a rainy Monday today but I don't mind. I'm home today...YAH!!! Kid is at school and hubby is at work. This morning was spent doing a few miscellaneous chores and the rest of the day will be spent knitting & spinning. Or maybe I'll start on my FATC swap.

Reply to Gillian: we don't spray our apple trees. How big is your tree? Sometimes the apples are not doing well because the tree is too big or the soil needs feeding. And it could also depend on the variety of your tree. Some may need a longer growing season than others and some apples takes time to mature after picking. Our apples need another month after picking before they're ready to eat. I don't know if you're in my area but there's the Apple Festival coming up at our local university.