Michigan Fiber Festival and More

I had a great time at Southern Comforts Fiber Market last weekend. The festival had good attendance for a new show and I think it will get even better as it gains an audience. I had only a few nights at home before I was off to Michigan for the Michigan Fiber Festival this weekend.

Today was setup day, which took most of the morning and afternoon.

As you can see we have a good selection of Darning Eggs and Nostepinnes, and more to come soon.

I couldn’t decide which of the yarn display pictures was my favorite so I just put them all up.

I’ll be pretty busy for the next few days with the festival so I may not get another post in until next week. I do want to pass on some news though. Do you recall that I test knit a shawl last year for a Kristi Renshaw?

The pattern is called Confection Shawl and she has published it on Ravelry and on her website.

Maize Cowl Knitting Pattern

Maize Cowl Knitting Pattern

I really like my new Maize Cowl. I am pretty sure that it will be my go to scarf when the weather cools off. For Nashville that will be quite awhile yet. I have a project page for it on Ravelry.

Maize Cowl Knitting Pattern

I love the texture and ease of knitting in this design. I wrote it about 8 years ago as pattern support for my Classic Merino Superwash DK yarn. It was a new base that I wanted a one skein project to help promote it. Up until now I have only had it available in my booth. To celebrate my new website however, I have decided to publish it online. It is on my website only, for a $4 download. I haven’t listed it on Ravelry. I may in the future, but for now it’s only on my website or in my booth at festivals.

Speaking of festivals, I am going to be in Charlotte, NC next weekend for the second annual Southern Comforts Fiber Market. I will be leaving on Wednesday and setting up the booth on Thursday. The festival happens on Friday and Saturday. I have really enjoyed my nice long break, but it will also be good to get back to the festivals. I like being with the knitters and talking about yarn.

Yarn Dyeing Day Two and Three

Yesterday’s yarn dyeing was greens and a few reddish purples. We dyed 465 skeins and then we prepped for last two days work.

Today’s work was dyeing the rest of the purples, oranges, yellows and warm neutrals. The total skeins for this day was 365, which was a half day. :-)

We have one more morning’s work and all the yarn will be dyed for the second half of the fiber festival season. There are more tasks to be done like printing labels, affixing labels and boxing in the trailer, but the hardest part is done.

I’ll have pictures of my knitting and the last day’s yarn dyeing next time. Thanks for reading!

Two Things

Good morning! Over the weekend I bound off and blocked my Debussy Shawl. I wore it this morning too while I had my quiet time with my coffee and reading. It was still a bit chilly this morning but we are in for some warmer, brighter days this week. Spring is coming soon!

I ended up doing only one extra repeat of chart 5 for a total of 8. The medium size has 7 and the large has 10. I weighed my remaining yarn between the end of the 7th repeat and the end of the 8th. I found that I used 35g for that repeat. I determined I would need at least 25-30g to do the final edge chart and at that time had 51g, so clearly there was not enough yarn to do anymore repeats of chart 5. I proceeded with the 18 rows of chart 6 and I have 21g left over.

I measured it this morning after being off the blocking pins for a little while. The long side, which is the diagonal edge is about 69″ and the shortest side is 41″. The measurement down from the top (longest edge) to the point, if you were wearing it like a triangle shawl is about 30″. So all that means it is pretty close to the largest size in Dee’s pattern even without the other two repeats. It’s a nice size but not huge.

I got straight to work on my gansey design after finishing the shawl. I decided to use my Classic Merino Superwash Sport yarn. I then decided that the Earl Grey would make a nice color that I hoped would show off the stitch patterns well. I know that traditionally ganseys were made with dark blue yarn and I did consider using my Midnight Blue, but I could see it in the Earl Grey in my head and went for it. I dyed 10 skeins, figuring I will probably use at least 6 for the 42″ sweater I am planning.

I worked up a stockinette swatch on size 4US needles and got a gauge of 5.5 stitches and 8.5 rows per inch. I used a remnant of Emerald for the plain swatch while waiting for the grey to dry. I spent some time perusing and selecting a stitch pattern arrangement. I graphed a portion for swatching and used the grey for that. I ended up making a minor change after knitting a few rows. Maybe you can see in the swatch that the ribbing between the double moss at the left side and the chevron in the middle. I changed that vertical column to seed stitch so it wouldn’t recede so much.

I like how the elements look next to each other. I began knitting the bottom welt last night. I am using size 3US needles for the garter welts and will do that for the definition ridges in the body and sleeves as well. I am doing the bottom welts separate for front and back and will join to work in the round leaving them separate but with a slight overlap at the side seam point. I did go with the channel island cast on for it. It’s a bit fiddly at first but not difficult once you get the rhythm down and it looks nice. I knit a 2″ long welt because I don’t like a welt that flips up.

Okay, that’s it for now. I should get the second welt done today and have it on the circular needles working the main body very soon. I am excited!

Startitis

I have been stash diving this week and it appears that I have a bad case of startitis. This is a rare affliction for me. I am typically project monogamous. The other notable change is that none of these are booth samples. I know! It’s been awhile since I just knit some stuff on a whim, and it’s pretty fun actually.

So here’s what’s on my needles at the moment. Riveting, I know. :-)

First up is Debussy, which I have knit before as a booth sample in my DK weight Merino yarn but this one is just for fun in some Cestari Wool/Cotton blend that has been in my stash for about 10 years. It’s slightly rustic looking which I think will make a nice all-season wrap.

Next up is a pair of socks. It’s been too long since I made any socks and I wanted a variety to switch back and forth on. I decided to make a pair of Gridiron Socks, in another long marinating yarn. The story behind this yarn and the one in my other project below goes back to 2009. I was in a online group, I think it was on Ravelry originally, with a handful of other hand dyers. We decided to do a collaboration yarn club. I think we called it Fiber Baristas? Anyway, we each were dyeing up a unique colorway for one of the installments and agreed to send a skein to each other as well. It was fun and I am finally getting around to using a couple of mine.

This last project is a cowl pattern my second daughter wrote for me using my Classic Merino Superwash Sock yarn about 10-12 years ago I think. It’s called Spiral Effect Cowl and I have made it a couple times before as a booth sample in that yarn. This one is made using another indie dyed yarn from the above club though. The cat (Mimi) is a bonus today. :-)

Oh, and I almost forgot! I finished my third booth sample I was knitting over the weekend before the stash dive. I think I will save that for another post after I can get a chance to get some better pictures maybe. Here’s sneak peek though.

So Close

I have completed almost all the knitting for the afghan. I only have 5 more hexagons to make!

Here’s the thing though; I was beginning to be concerned that I would run out of the navy blue yarn. See those 3 balls of blue? That’s all I have left.

There is some good news though. Are you ready for a bit of math? Bear with me for a minute okay? So I weighed the navy blue yarn I had left before I knit the hexagon above with the light gray. I had 44g of the navy at that point. I also estimated based on the number of stripes in each color that the weight of each hexagon was 60% navy and 40% of the other color. When I weighed one I was right on the money. Each one weighs 10g and I know that 6g of that is the blue. Furthermore I know THAT is true because after knitting the above hex, my remaining navy yarn weighs 38g, which means it used up exactly 6g. SOOOO, that means since I have 5 more hexagons x 6g each is 30g, I should have just enough to make it.

I am not sure once I get it all sewn together whether it will need some edging. I had assumed at the start that I could use the navy for that if I decided to do some edging but that won’t be an option. So, we’ll see when I get to that point I guess.

The virtual event was interesting but a bit disappointing in sales and participation. I am so looking forward to getting back to doing “real” in person festivals. I was working on my event calendar today on the website, if you’d like to check it out. I don’t have as many this year as I had scheduled in the past due to cancellations this spring, but I do have 14 for 2021. I normally do 15-20 each year.

See you soon! I’ll probably be sewing this puppy together by the next post. Oh and also I am sorely tempted to make a Wonderful Wallaby now after reading Suziecreamcheeze’s recent post, LOL! As soon as I finish the knitting but maybe not all the sewing, I may just be casting one on. I already have several candidates in the stash. :-)

Just Snow and Knitting Today

We are enduring what I hope will be all the real winter we are going to get this week. Sunday night and into Monday we got mostly freezing rain and sleet with a bit of snow on top. It has been frigid since then with temperatures well below freezing. It’s not predicted to rise above freezing until Saturday. We are under another Winter Storm Warning today through tomorrow. It’s just starting to snow now and we are supposed to get 2-5″. I know that sounds like not much but this is the south. We have main roads clear but neighborhood roads like ours have been a solid sheet of packed ice and snow since Sunday night. The salt doesn’t do much when it’s this cold and not many vehicles are out helping to make tracks. My husband is going to take me up to pick up a grocery order tomorrow if we can. His truck has 4 wheel drive; mine doesn’t. We are fine though. We have electricity and plenty of food. No worries yet, LOL.

So I have been knitting some at least. I made progress on both of my projects I have going at the moment. First I’ll show you the hand spun scarf for my son. I like it, but you sure never know what you’re gonna get color wise with hand dyed hand spun yarn, do you? It’s entertaining to see what comes out of the skein. ;-)

The afghan pieces are coming along too. I have exactly 22 more to make before I am ready to start assembling it. Here’s the four colors that I have all 10 completed.

Here’s the remaining 4 colors to finish. I have 6 out of 10 in the color on the top of the pile (the yellowish gray color) and 4 of each of the other 3 colors. That’s the 3 gray ones there in the front.

Well I hope you are all keeping warm and cozy too. I know there’s lots of snow and bitter cold in much of the country.

Saturday Baking and Knitting

I made good on my promise. I knit 8 more hexagons for the afghan after I finished the first full lace pattern repeat on Curio, which I will show you in a minute.

So now I have four of each color combination and there are 8 contrast colors; the main color in all is navy. I had been thinking that 8 rows would be about right but now that I am halfway to that goal, I think I may need at least 10 rows to make it the right size.

Here’s the current state of Curio and I will probably start back on it for a bit tonight before make more hexagons.

I’ve also been baking today. I have a batch of bread and cinnamon rolls in the oven right now and it smells wonderful in my house. :-)

Shop Work

I have made some progress on my afghan recycling project but am saving that for my next post when I have a chance to get a decent picture . Today I thought I would share what we have been working on in the wood shop.

Naked nostepinnes :-)

These are some new Nostepinnes we finished up over the weekend.

Cherry Nostepinnes
Walnut Nostepinnes

What a difference adding that finish makes, huh? It’s kind of like blocking your knitting. :-)

We even found a bit of Mahogany laying around from quite a few years ago. These are all on the Website for $25.

So today we started working through some wood that needed to be roughed out into blanks for turning. These will probably end up being mostly more Darning Eggs and Nostepinnes, but you never know. This is from various trees around the property that needed cut down or trimmed. I think it’s a mix of Cherry, Maple, and maybe some fruit trees.

Okay that’s it for today. I’ll be back later this week with a knitting post.

This Week’s Progress

I am getting sooooo close to the finish on this project. I am about halfway through with the final side. I got a fair bit of this knitting done last weekend when Jerry and I took a short overnight trip to visit my mother-in-law. It’s the most knitting time I have had in awhile, which explains the slow progress I guess.

On our trip home after an overnight in Evansville, we took a slight detour and spent about half a day checking out the Land Between the Lakes park. Jerry has wanted to try some off road trail driving in his truck and we discovered that they have some there. We tried that out and while it was a fun adventure we weren’t too impressed with their trail markings and didn’t want to get lost in there, so we didn’t go very far in. LOL! It was a fun experiment though. I got only one picture of the Bison. There are also Elk but we didn’t go on the drive where you can see them. I think it was still closed anyway.

Since we are on the subject of nature; here’s our yucca plant in full bloom this week. :-)

On the business side; I got all the Nostepinnes and Darning Eggs added to the website last week, and since I told you I would update you on that, consider yourself updated. :-)

We are working on a few ideas for new products at the moment that we are getting very excited about. More on that when I have something to show you. :-)