Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year

When I processed the Coopworth, I roughly divided it in half---half went in the Cranberry dye bath and half went in the Charcoal dye bath. I could tell the Cranberry one had a little more fiber in it. After I spun the Cranberry, I had 1 lb. 3 oz. The Charcoal-colored fleece was blended with some black merino top and after I spun that up I weighed it. 1 lb. 3 oz! Like the Cranberry, it's not quite a sweater's worth. Maybe a short-sleeved sweater or a sweater vest. For now I'm just going to stash it until inspiration hits.

I can't see too far in to the New Year, but here's a list of thing I want to do in the next few weeks: spin some purchased roving (started today), learn to use my new wool combs, work with Shetland fleece (should arrive in 2 days), knit with natural colored fleece, make a purple purse out of the last of my Cotswold (in the dye bath right now!) and learn to dye roving or batts.

Once spring has arrived, I want to start a dyer's garden.

Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Something Red and lots of TV

I've been knitting and watching TV for several hours each night for the last few nights. I watched Talk To Me, Brokeback Mountain, Hairspray (the new one) and Man Vs. Wild---the Siberian episode. I loved that episode---didn't know that you can get frost bite in your lungs once it gets down to negative 40 F. Good to know since that's actually possible around here! Maybe tomorrow night I'll put the knitting down and actually go out for a New Year's cocktail.
I just spent the last 1/2 hour trying to put a youtube video up on my blog but I couldn't figure it out. Put down your knitting and watch DRUNK HISTORY!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas

It's nice that I finally have time to sit down and update my blog. I try to take the photos with daylight, but daylight has been scarce these days. At night, when I finally have time to get on the computer, it's too late to photograph my projects. Today I got an early start.

There were many presents exchanged in my household and everyone is thrilled with their gifts. I want to show off my fiber-related presents...

My husband gave me these little stitch markers. They are cute little wool and clay sheep! He got them on etsy from Wee Ones.
OMG! My husband, the best husband in the whole wide world, gave me these wool combs!!!
Here are my current projects:
Now that I've done sweater from raw wool to the end, big projects don't seem that intimidating. So with the next spinning project I decided to do a "sweater's worth" of yarn. I blended the charcoal colored Coopworth with some black merino top. I put all the batts on the couch so you can see what I think a "sweater's worth" is. OK, so it might be a small sweater.

Speaking of small sweaters, I started knitting the Something Red sweater by Wendy Bernard from Knit and Tonic. I hope I have enough yarn. It's a short sleeve cardigan so my 8 hanks of cranberry colored Coopworth should do.

Merry Christmas everyone!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

G'day Sweater

Well, It's finally done. It fits pretty good. Some of the color pooled in a way that I don't like, but nothing I can do about that now. Onward to the next project...

Friday, December 19, 2008

Cold in the USA

Just finished the seams. I'm really close to the end. This is seriously going to be the world's warmest sweater. It's like a coat. It weighs several pounds.

I'd like to go on and on about how cold it is, but it's cold everywhere! Nothing special about Montana coldness. My obsession for looking at the 5-day forecast online and checking my digital thermometer is borderline creepy.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Do you have to be so negative?

The Cranberry Colored Coopworth is done being spun. It was a joy to spin after the hideous amount of Romney-Cotswold.
It looks like we won't even hit 0 for a while.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Technically it's still Fall

I've been taking pictures of this sweater project from the very beginning. When I was carding the wool, there were pumpkins in the back ground because it was October. Now it's December and my blocked sweater pieces are sitting under the Christmas tree. Seasons are passing and the sweater is taking shape little by little. Technically it's still fall. So it's the holidays that are passing. Today is my husband's birthday.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Oh Snap!

We are having a serious cold snap here in Central Montana. It's -13 F right now and our high today was -8 F. So yesterday I bought a bunch of groceries and today we stayed inside almost all day. I carded all of the Cranberry Coopworth and began to spin it.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

My New Wool Coat

Today was my 40th birthday and my husband gave me this wool coat. I love the color and the cut. He got it in Calgary when we were up there and I actually picked it out. I had to wait 6 weeks before I could wear it.

All the main pieces of the sweater are done. Tomorrow I will start the button band.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008


A while back I purchased a Coopworth fleece from Maplewood North. If you are looking for some raw fleece you should check them out. I finally started the process of washing and dyeing.

I used a dye that is new to me called Country Classics. I did half the fleece in Cranberry and half in Charcoal. I'm thinking about making the Something Red sweater by Wendy Bernard with the Cranberry fleece.

It's kind of out of character for me to put the cat in my blog, but my daughter took this photo and I like the colors. The cat kind of looks like the Charcoal color.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

This is going fast.

Here's a photo from the pattern booklet to show you what I'm shooting for.

This is going really fast. The back and the two front pieces are done. I'm going to cast on the sleeves tonight.

Friday, December 5, 2008

the knitting has begun...

I'm pleased with the striping pattern. That was a big concern of mine. And the irregularity of the yarn isn't a problem as I knit it up. So it's going fine. I'm using a thicker yarn---4 st. per inch. The pattern calls for 5 st. per inch. I have to compute out a size that does not exist...XXS. Someone at the knitting get together explained how to reduce the number of stitches at the same ratio as the other sizes to get a smaller size than is written. It's working so far.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Sooo happy!

The only place the swift clamp will fit is my counter by the door. LOOK-- we had a high yesterday of 27 degrees. Today is colder.

I'm so happy the yarn is done and I can start knitting!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Wacky Blue Batt

The wacky cool colored batt (from the night I went a little crazy) was mostly fine wool and I over blended it. When I spun it up, the colors all blended together into this blue.