Monday, May 29, 2006

Mass Sheep and Wool...Eh.

The Best Hubby in the World and I went to the MA Sheep and Wool Saturday. It was ok. Don't ask me why I'm not so excited about this one I just wasn't feeling it.

I was able to get a couple of goodies. I’ve been holding back from buying the gorgeous roving from Indigo Moon Farms. I went to the fest with the intent of buy some. And buy I did.

I like a few things about Indigo Moon. The fiber seems really well prepared and when you go to her booth, she has knitted up swatches of each roving so you can see the result of the colorways. This particular one, in my opinion looks better knitted up than in the roving itself but we’ll see…

I also got a little bit of this Merino/Tencel mix from The Sheep Shed.

I had a funky dream about these exact shades of orange and pink so naturally I had to buy roving in those shades.

I sat in on the Washing a Fleece Without Felting workshop with Barbara Clorite-Ventura. I didn’t stay as it was a paid workshop and I got there just a little too late. It was really neat though.

Cuteness factor of the week? The Angora bunnies. Relax, I didn’t buy any. I didn’t even hold any for fear of falling in love with and absconding with one. But do ya think maybe these little guys are just a little socialized?

After a while, we took off and ran over to WEBS. Now, many a fiber geek has raved to me about this Mecca of yarn stores. But, honestly, I don’t know how any of them did it without doing that “I’m doing the pee pee dance because it’s the only way I can physically express my excitement” thing (you know the one I mean, right? Or am I the only dork who does this?). Anyway, I got a thing or two…Ahem…There was this…

...a little big of this…

Aaaaannnd…Oh ya…This

Now hold on a minute! The DB Cathay was a really good deal and I do have projects in mind for it. Hmmm? What’s that you say? The Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sock?. Well, I do want to make my first pair of socks and you don’t expect me to make them in just any yarn do you? Do you? Ok, ok. I admit it, I succumbed to the yarns sheer yummy factor. But they will make a lovely pair of Jaywalkers, don’t you think?

So that was it for shopping for this weekend, anyway.

I did go ahead and ply some of that yarn I was spinning from NETA Pal Mary’s sheep Charlotte. I decided to practice my long draw and produced this.

It’s a bit too “lofty”, a.k.a. fluffy. But it’s my first try and I’ll practice some more and see where I can improve.

On a non crafting note, my wonderful MIL got me these lovely Stargazer Lily plants to plant.

She’s such a sweetie. I know with these and Casablanca Lilies you either love them or you hate them. Some people find the smell overpowering but I just love them.

So, off I go to plant and swatch for Picovoli.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Give Er Some Bandwidth and Ya Can't Shut Her Up

Sorry about the lengthy post but there's just a lot to say. I'll start with this weekends events.

BIG thanks to NETA/Sunday Spinning Maven Sherry who hosted Summer Spa at her gorgeous lake house this weekend. I had a scenic drive through some of the most beautiful parts of Massachusetts. Listening to last week's episode of Cast On made it that much more enjoyable. If you ever have to take a long drive by yourself, I highly recommend listening to Brenda.

I got to the turn leading to Sherry's house and I wasn't sure if Oma's Escort was going to make it down the path.

But make it she did. I stepped out of the car and saw these lovely little flowers and just had to snap a pic.

In fact, every time I turned around I saw something beautiful. (Yes, I snapped many pics but will spare you for the most part). Mona, Kay, Lori Micki and I all had a wonderful time spinning and knitting the weekend away staring out at this view.

I had such a great time and I learned so much from all of the ladies. Micki was so helpful to this fledgling spinner and I am so grateful. I can't wait to meet up with her again this weekend. Now Micki's skills as a hillarious raconteur and her wonderful giving and helpful nature was only outweighed by her collection of spindles. Get a load of this!

I mean ya gotta admit, that's impressive. I got to use two of her Golding spindles and they are great! I sense a purchase coming on. Hey, I don't know, I'm just sayin.

Anyway. I'm having some trouble uploading the rest of the images from this weekend so as soon as I figure out what the issue is with them, I'll post some more. But I had a great time at Sherry's. We chatted, spun, knitted canoed and kayaked. I just go to sit and listen to the water and had to do little more than enjoy the company of truly wondeful people and participate in and learn more about something I really love to do. I backpacked in Europe about seven years ago and I remember being on the train going from Paris to Venice and watching the moon rise. There was a moment there when I felt like I caught a little piece of myself. And that's how I felt again just sitting there on the dock by the lake. I don't know if that makes any sense but there you have it. I know...Corny. But it was so much fun and I think it's just great that she's willing to have her home invaded by a bunch of fiber freaks for the weekend. It's was a great way to say goodbye to the relentless rain and hello to (almost) Summer. Thanks again, Sherry.

Next on the agenda is my list of FO's. Ok. So let's start with this.

It's...Well...It's a TENT, people. Now I am not a tiny girl but I don't know how big I thought I was but I swim in this thing! "Measure twice, cut once." for cryin out loud. I admit it. It's my own fault. This is all from my serious aversion to doing any kind of math. Yep, I ignored every single thing I've ever read or heard or learned and just said "yeah, that's my chest measurement." and just forged ahead and knitted...and knitted... AND KNITTED...Honestly, I knew what I was doing, I saw all the signs and promptly ignored them all. This was my first sweater so I'm really dissapointed but I'm not feeling sorry for myself. I've sentenced myself to serious measuring and to hours of listening to Lara, although the latter is hardly punishment. I've really found listening to her podcast VERY useful. Although I am dissapointed in the size, I approached this project very much as a practice item so I'm trying to look at the bright side and am giving myself teenie props for actually at least getting it to look like a sweater. And I love the yarn! It was TLC Cara Mia and Ooo. It is SO soft.

My next FO came out much better...At least I think it did. Take a look at Chickami from Chick knits.

I'm actually a little proud of it. I haven't blocked it yet but THIS fits. Hmph! For this one I used Takhi's Cotton Classic. Really soft and great to work with.

That's it for the FO's for now.

I'm also learning to sew so I'll post some pics about that adventure soon. But for now, the item I'm most excited about. My little family addition...Here she is.

(Hearing Stevie Wonder's "Isn't She Lovely" in my head). I just love this wheel! I've been taking spinning lessons for a little while and had been renting an Ashford Traditional. I just wasn't a good fit for that wheel. But I tried Sunday Spinner Kat's Schacht Matchless DT and I was just smitten. So I was going to order it from my spinning teacher but Schacht is presently backordering these. I went into typical "You mean I can't have instant gratification!!!" panic mode and called at least 10 places until I found these WONDERFUL people. Let me tell you about this place. They not only had wonderful service but they had the wheel to me in 5 days!!! All the way from California to Mass! Which meant I had it in time for Summer Spa which was what I wanted. I had her (yes, I'm referring to it as her and YES, I will be giving her a name. I'm a dork, I know this) shipped to my husband place of business he's so funny. He knows me so well that once I gave him the tracking number, he sent me updated e-mails. "I know you've already checked but it's in Chelmsford right now and should be here by tomorrow morning. He knows me so well (and yet, he still married me).

I practiced my long draw on the wheel this weekend and I can't tell you how much I love this thing but I'm sure I'll bore you trying.

Speaking of my hubby's work, I snapped these pics when I picked him up the other day.

Make way for the goslings! Aren't they cute? Now I work in the city and I love it but wouldnt' it be nice to step outside for a break and see these little cuties?

Ok. I will take pity and be off for now. I am going to Mass Sheep and Wool this weekend. I sincerely hope we have better weather than we did in NH. Let me know if you'll be there. I'd love to meet up. Otherwise, I'll have more updates then.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

No Brainer

Your Career Type: Artistic
You are expressive, original, and independent.Your talents lie in your artistic abilities: creative writing, drama, crafts, music, or art.
You would make an excellent:
Actor - Art Teacher - Book Editor Clothes Designer - Comedian - Composer Dancer - DJ - Graphic DesignerIllustrator - Musician - Sculptor
The worst career options for your are conventional careers, like bank teller or secretary.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Soggy but Happy


Yep. I went to the NH Sheep and Wool and I’m sure I don’t need to tell you what the subject line refers to. I wore jeans which are already a bit long on my short little legs and let me tell ya, by the end of the day, they could’ve fit my husband who’s over a foot taller than I. And chilled to the bone. Woof.

I had a wonderful time, though. This was only my second fest ever and I went with my NETA/Spinning pals Kat and Mary. I didn’t really get to meet too many bloggers as for the most part, I was concentrating on swimming…uh, treading…uh…Well, navigating the small lakes that had formed around the fairgrounds. I did get to meet Julia and I swear I caught a glimpse of Wendy but I think we were both preoccupied with getting the heck out of the downpour.

Overall, I was very good. No seriously…Stop laughing! I only purchased two Bosworth spindles...

I've heard wonderful things about them and although you can't really tell from the picture, the large spindle is made of Purpleheart (when asked, purple is my favorite color. Any shade) and the smaller is made of Tulip wood. They truly are beautiful spindles and from the little I've spun with them they seem to be very well balanced.

I also bought a Louet Niddy Noddy and 2 Addi needles for my next project.

Oh yeah and just this teenie, tiny, almost non-existant soupcon of Ingeo.

I'd never even heard of it before but fiber made of corn sounded interesting enough that buying 4 oz. of it didn't seem like too much of an indulgence. Was it disinterest or an uncharacteristic bout of self control that made me buy so little? Neither. The truth is I'd just placed an order for a new "family member" who will be arriving (hopefully) later this week. There’s also the fact that I did NOT exhibit ANY self control in CT. (you'll see in a future post).

I nearly did go home with the most aDORable little charcoal gray angora bunny. Mary made the mistake of putting him in my arms and if it hadn't been for Kat and dear hubby (bless him for even coming with me) I swear I would’ve told the lady (dealer) to reach into my purse and take out whatever she was asking for the bunny (and whatever else). Alas, I live in a townhouse and the silly condo association would never allow me to put up a little home for “Cute Ball O' Fur”. Phooey. So, we parted ways.

This is what I love about these festivals (all two that I’ve been to). It was SOOO dreary and cold but everytime I stepped into a barn, there were friendly faces and amazing eye candy.
Forgive me, I didn't take note of the name of this vendor but isn't this lovely? I was completely overstimulated. The fiber, the wheels, the yarn. And the animals. Oh. They were so cute!

Kat, Mary and I had a hard time keeping each other in check. But they are wonderful fest buddies. If I say “keep me away from fiber, this is strictly Tool Day.” They will drag me kicking and screaming and get me back on course.

Unfortunately, I was unable to find the Valkyrie combs I was looking for to process the terrific Polwarth fleece I bought in CT. Oh well, online shopping it is.

I wish I had had the opportunity to meet more bloggers but the weather was just not cooperative at all. Hopefully Mass Sheep and Wool will bring sunshine. What? You thought I'd had my fill? Of course you didn't.

I have yet to post pics of my current projects but I promise there will be some of those and hopefully pics of the new family member before next week.

Monday, May 08, 2006

Getting My Feet Wet

Ok. So I'm taking the plunge. I wrote to a blogger last week thanking her for all that she shares and I thought for the millionth time "Gee, I'd love to have a blog but I'm so darned shy." Then I thought "What the heck." Now it occurs to me that the world probably doesn't need another fiber blog but I thought I might sneak in while no one was looking. So here I am.

I've been knitting for a little over a year now and have just started to learn to spin and sew. I am totally addicted. I love it. I love everything I'm learning, all that I'm making (and it hasn't all been that great). I thought this would be a great place to show my work, get some feedback and babble.

I'll do my best to at least post every week and hopefully, I'll be able to contribute insight and entertainment. I don't have any pics up yet but will very soon.