Slender Stockinette Vest

I made another vest, this one more slender in design. Next vest I will play around with the back piece. I want it to flow more….

I switched back to making cowls, to test out a yarn for friend. I tried a lace pattern switching away from the cables I’ve been working on. Its a nice change, but a bit hard to see the pattern clearly. Can’t wait to get this one off the needles.

This vest is made from farmablefibres mercerized cotton fingering yarn, on 8mm needles. It weighs 39 gms.

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Minimalist Circle Vests

I have run into some difficulty getting the math to work in the pattern I was trying to follow. I was waiting to talk to friends this weekend about the issue, and found out I’m not alone. I have turned my attention to making a knitted version of a circle shawl. Which in my case has ended up being a circle vest.  I finished another one with slightly different dimensions than the first. I also switched to a fingering cotton yarn, which I will have in my booth this year. Another cotton one to go with a solid colour, then I will experiment a bit with hemp yarns, then silk.

This is a chunky cotton I am trying to secure a supply of, not yet available this year. My more fashion attempt.

This is a fingering weight cotton I have this year. My practical attempt. Which also works much nicer for this time of year as well. Made from 51 grams of cotton, a bit more than 200 yards.

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Life is Variable

Working full time at a 9-2-5 and working full time on the yarn business is not. Working. Mostly its too much work.

This past weekend I taught advanced spinners for the first time at the Ontario Handspinning Seminar. I was super nervous, but it was AMAZING! My classes were small, something I was very grateful for. It let me have loads of interaction with everyone in the class. We learned from each other and I got to show people my love for bast,

I have an admin contract until the end of Dec and 3 more yarn shows to go. I might make it. Doing anything yarn outside of the shows is completely out, I’m changing the sales part of the site tonight. And of course 2 big things in my life is not enough. Its nice to finally have weekends to devote to fixing up the farmhouse (until late August). I would like to get it set up as soon as possible as an artist retreat! Small to start (~4 people) and eventually a weekend retreat for small groups (~11) . I can’t really set up my house for a dyeing weekend this year, but thankfully the farm is almost ready. Certainly ready for a day time event this year. The brave can come see if they would be willing to spend a night!!

I look forward to seeing everyone in the fall at the Twist Festival, the KW Knitter’s Fair or the Woodstock Fleece Festival,

PS – I am negotiating for a second hand Spring loom and will have to sell my Ashford table loom to facilitate the purchase. I will post an ad on the Warped Weavers board on Rav pretty soon (as soon as the warp is off the loom!).

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Frolic-ing and a CKAL

Last weekend was the Knitters Frolic in Toronto. Thank you to everyone who came by the booth, it was a pleasure to talk to you and exchange ideas!

Here is the list of patterns I had display items for at the show (and where you can find them):

The Amiga Cardigan in silk from Knitty

The Alcina pattern in lace cotton from Rowan

The Spring Lace top in 3ply/fingering hemp (paper copy purchase) from LanaKnits Designs

The Spring Lace top in 3ply/fingering hemp (PDF copy purchase) from Patternfish

Still to come: 6ply hemp sweater pattern details

CKAL – Cowl Knit A Long

Many people asked me about the cable pattern I have used for my cowls this year, it comes from this book.

I don’t like to use cable needles so much, I mostly drop the needle out of the stitch anyways. I am not going to be using the terms from the book, I just find it better to look at which way my cable stitch is leaning. I will be describing/illustrating how I adapted the pattern to work in the round.

This pattern works in a multiple of six. My project is 90 stitches cast on to 8mm needles. This size works great for taking pictures that you can easily see the stitches in.

Cast on your own project using the yarn and needle size of your choice. A cowl for an adult can be around 24 inches around to easily fit over the head. Bigger can be better, depending on your style. I like the 24 inch around size because it fits easily enough under my jacket, where I prefer to wear my cowl.

Step 1: Cast on your project in a multiple of 6 and mark the end.

Step 2: Join in the round insuring there are no twists.

Step 3: The first row establishes the patterning for the cowl. It is worked Knit 2 (K2), Purl 4 (P4) until the last 2 stitches before the marker.

Step 4: Bring your yarn to the back of your project so you are ready to knit stitches.

Step 5: For the cable row we no longer focus on 2 and 4 stitches. On the cable row we are always dealing with stitches in groups of 3 stitches that we manipulate, either to lean right or to lean left. The cable stitches alternate the entire length of the row and you always end with the opposite lean than the one at the start of the row. The cables rows mirror each other in the flow of the pattern.

I cheat the pattern row in the round, because it is the choice of two outcomes that I prefer. Either you can cheat the stitches, or you make your cable lean after finishing the row. I find the second choice makes the stitches

For the first cable row, the first cable stitch leans to the right. To make the cable, two purl stitches will be crossed by the knit stitch (leaning to the right) so that it is knit into first.

When the stitches are all back to the left needle, knit, purl, purl.

Working on the next 3 stitches, the knit stitch is first and this time we want it to lean to the left. I pull off the knit stitch, transfer the 2 purl stitches to the right needle. drag the knit stitch to the left to sit on the left needle and trhen transfer back the 2 purl stitches. Then I purl, purl, knit.

Repeat the cable row leans for the rest of row in the round.

Stopping here for now. But posting the rest of the pictures. I must get ready for the next show! Eats into my online time…


















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Fibres West 2015

I had such a fun time at Fibres West this year! My booth is very streamlined this year.

I had a fantastic time meeting people again from last year and new folks as well. I sent 6 boxes to BC as well as bringing 10 lbs of hemp yarns and I came back with 2 suit cases, I declare a success! I love it when I don’t have to mail any boxes back home.

In addition to the show I stayed with my girlfriend who has sheep (on a separate property) giving birth in March. We went over there in intervals to check the mamas, feed, and clean. I happily watched and took pictures.

The shepherdess and her flock – evening feeding.

Over in the pen is one mama and her baby. Such a cute lamby mimicking the adults and playing around.

The other ladies are eating their meals out of the pen in the smaller grass area. And Nervous Nelly is just behaving to type.

Lets leave Nelly for a moment and head back to the uber cute lamb.

Mama thinks I have more food for her!

The ladies are back in the pen. Lynne had to hold the little lamb (Daisy) back she would have escaped for adventures if she could!

The only still shot I managed of Nelly!

This trip was too short and I can’t wait to return again.

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Countdowns and Milestones

Countdown to my first show of 2015! T-minus 3 days and counting!

Very excited to be in Fibres West for year two. Looking forward to meeting everyone out west again! And very happy to have my products and ideas on track for this year. 6 boxes got shipped out to BC and sadly one got busted up and there has been some damage to the yarns. Good for the folks out west who will get a surprise SALE!

I passed an amazing milestone recently – I finished a 4 year old scarf. It was the piece I made between weaving 1 and weaving 2. It was also the first weaving I have ever (mistakes & all) created completely by myself. At first I was very unhappy about all the stuff I done wrong to the scarf. Its a heavy yarn and I threaded way too many ends per inch. I made amusing errors warping, like accidentally putting the yarns under the bar, and had to rethread one time over. I also busted a warp thread while I was weaving – something I understand how to deal with now….!

All in all it may have taken 4 years, but I LOVE my scarf now, and I’m glad I went through the process, that made me a better weaver today.

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Life of a Yarny Update

I have almost finished year three of this grand experiment, also known as my show season. Life as a yarny is both really awesome and kind of terrifying!

I finished tallying my inventory and now I know I sold around 280 lbs of silk, 100 lbs of cotton and 80 lbs of Romanian hemp this year. It was interesting to see what sold and did not sell this year in my categories.

I have a huge backlog of pictures to post and many new ideas bursting outta my head now for the upcoming year. I bought acid and indigo dyes to experiment with. I have some yarn design ideas I really want to follow up on in the new year. I also plan to put together an email newsletter, but since I personally hate spam, its a slow process trying to balance relevancy and self advertising.

I finished this hand dyed silk scarf in Sept in time for the fashion show of the KW Knitter’s Guild Fair.

In Nov & Dec I am weaving up xmas gifts of tea towels and finishing up a knitted scarf.

Its snowing today and I kinda wish I did not have to leave the house!

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