Saturday, August 1, 2009

Summer Time Flies

     No, we haven't been having a fly problem, just the usual problem of time flying by when you're having fun. We decided to stay home this summer and do Oregon things. One of them was supposed to be blogging (in my mind) but this is the first I've gotten to it as I've been having too much fun doing other things. I guess I'll just try to do one thing (or at least theme) at a time so it isn't too arduous to read. By the way, if you haven't seen Seth's website recently, you should check it out. He re-did parts of it, and it has very little reading, mostly pictures.

    Of course a huge amount of my time has been devoted to fibery pursuits, so I'll start with
 them. School let out on Wed. June 17th and the Black Sheep Gathering started Fri. 19th. I worked on my room Thursday, then left it in total disarray for the rest of the weekend as I took FIVE classes at BSG this year: Popular Wheel Mechanics (with the utterly amazing Judith MacKenzie-McCuin), making felted pendants (with sweet and talented Lori Flood), spinning greased lightning (mohair) (with the ebullient and exuberant Janis Thompson), spinning exotics (with Queen of the Fiber Bins Laurie Weinsoft), and Tips, Tricks and Techniques (knitting) (with the extremely knowledgeable and helpful Joan Schrouder). I was exhausted, but I learned a TON. 

 I  had one afternoon to shop and I used it wisely: buying a Jenkins Turkish drop spindle, a set of new hand cards(I forget the maker--John Day area), some practice wool from Bellwether, a new drive band for my wheel, and a silly book.

I managed to get my rear end back to my classroom for one day on Monday and got things pretty well cleaned up, but I had the summer fiber bug pretty bad by then. I spent the next few days at my friend Dominique's house playing with some white fleeces and dyes. 
We did about 9 batches altogether. Mine are intended to supplement my Hunting Jacket yarn supply because the Ewes (my local spinning group) convinced me that I didn't have enough fiber for a whole jacket. Doe's are basically just her going crazy because she loves to dye.

I also managed to finish a second Noro 2 row scarf and my handspun cardigan that I have been working on for about a year!
I was excited that the one set of buttons 
I had in my button drawer went more than perfectly with it. 
The yarn is a blend of 50%  dyed silk and 50% Lorane (the long dead prize sheep's name from which my mother-in-law gave me her last pound of fleece). I carded it on my old gnarly hand cards and spun it rather unevenly I must admit. I chain plied it to keep the colors from mixing. The plied yarns ranged from a rather decent worsted weight sort of thing to pretty durned bulky. I had to alternate balls every other row to get a half consistent fabric! It was fun though, and I used big #11 needles. I designed it using Barbara Walker's Knitting From the Top. I love how it fits and feels warm, but not too heavy. Next to Elizabeth Zimmermann, Barbara Walker is among my next most cherished knitting authors. Someone told me she's a feminist writer as well! AND she's going to be on the Luminary Panel at the Sock Summit which I will be attending next week.  Like I said, Summer Time Flies.

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