Catherine's Fiber Design No. 2

[Written 2-8-10 and postdated for chronology's sake.]

Catherine asked me to take her to The Weaving Works so she could design a new yarn: her second. She lured me with promises of actually wanting to spin the yarn. Of course, she didn't have to work to hard to convince me to go. Expecting to be off by a bit, I told her we would only get 2 ounces.

Instead, we ended up with 4-1/2! C likes her batts loaded with lots of different colors. This time she went with (L-R, above): raspberry, teal, periwinkle, sky blue, and pansy.

We took the stash home and straight away went to our trusty Clemes & Clemes drum carder. In no time, the fluffy, blended batts were practically flying off the machine!

She wanted the colors to remain distinct.

And after all that, we had two fluffy batts of this:

Plus a little one of the left-overs for me. Out came the spindles, and C spun with me for all of about 10 minutes before she was done. What a hoot!

I finished up my little leftovers batt into a cool thick-thin skein of singles.

No doubt I'll end up spinning C's batts, too... but I think I'll wait awhile to really give her an opportunity to spin them up herself.


Final Class at A New Yarn

[Written February 7, 2010, and post-dated for chronology's sake.]

One of my favorite local yarn stores, as you know, is A New Yarn: a non-profit yarn store associated with the Northwest Women's Shelter and benefiting women who've suffered domestic violence. Sadly, A New Yarn closed in March 2009. I don't know all the details except that it was very sad because the yarn store itself was doing really well both in terms of its community-building and in terms of the books... the closure seemed to have more to do with the non-profit itself and its real estate.

So although I had been scheduled to teach a sock class in February 2009 and an entrelac pillow class (from an original design) in March 2009, I only ended up teaching the sock class.

As is my practice, I knit along with the class. This group picked up Judy's Magic Cast-On quicker than some of the other groups. One of the women in the class, who spoke almost no English, came in the first day wearing a delicate hand-crocheted tank top that was so exquisite I considered honing my crochet skills. Recognizing that I don't have time to really practice a new handcraft, instead, I knit my socks in an orange yarn to remind me of her brilliant tank.

These socks knit up quickly, but they sat until August waiting for me to finish the stretchy bind-off and weave in the ends. (The new job went into its intense spring schedule, and I was just pretty sad about A New Yarn closing.) And then they sat again -- unworn -- until January 2010, when I finally got the camera out and took some pictures.

But, inspired when I put a hole through the toe of my Anti Pro Natura Socks, I finally got all the pieces in place, took the pictures, and started wearing them! They've moved into steady rotation as a favorite because of the yarn's comfort and breathability in the half boots I wear.

I'm planning to catch up the blog on my fiber exploits from the last year. I may have been swamped at work, but I did still manage to get a couple projects made... and I made some fun acquisitions and had some other accomplishments. So look for more soon!

Stripes of Sunshine Socks

Pattern: Mash-Up Magic Toe-Up Socks (MUMTUS) by Zhenya Lavy (workshop pictorial, Ravelry page, downloadable PDF of the condensed pattern)
Materials: OnLine Supersock, orange, #789/69772
Needles: US 1 / 2.25 mm
Primary Stitch Count: 68 (gauge 8.5 st/inch)
Started: February 2009
Completed Knitting: March 2009
Finished: August 2009