Life With Yarn

Round and round

Posted on: September 2, 2013

On the needles

I’ve been working almost exclusively on my Mandala shawl this week. I finally reached the end of chart 4 yesterday and I’m now working on the edging. It’s not exactly speedy but I’m hoping that it’ll be ready to block in the next couple of weeks. I’m quite looking forward to seeing how it opens up when blocked and how it all looks. I’ve got nothing else planned for the moment because I got a parcel of yarn on Saturday to do some colour work swatches for a designer, for which I’m being paid, so most of September will be taken up with those and a couple of sweaters – one a sample and one commission.

Off the needles

Just the one finished object this week – the Nina top for Eloise. I made a larger size so it’s sort of dress length at the moment because Eloise is quite small. It’ll look good with a pair of leggings over the coming months. She loves it, mainly because it is pink.

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Spinning

For the first time in about 6 months, I picked up my drop spindle this week. When at Woolfest in June I bought a small bag of merino fibre – 100g in 5 different colours – and figured I could get some practice in using this rather than the lovely fibre I’ve been gifted or bought in the last few months. I’m still very much a beginner but I did enjoy having a go again. I spent about an hour doing it and almost finished spinning up the first 20g sample. It’s certainly not of a quality where I could spin enough for even a small sized project right now; there’s some consistency in thickness but there are definitely places where it’s a bit too thick and if I plied it together then it’d be thick overall, but I think a single ply (strand) is probably about sock yarn weight (judging from looking rather than wpi or measuring right now) so if that’s right I can incorporate it into the sock yarn blanket.

I know that what I need to do is sit down for some time every day or every couple of days to improve but, unlike knitting, I find spinning with children around tricky. With knitting, I can pick up and put down with a high degree of confidence that I’ll know where I am when I come back to it, but with spinning, putting it down to attend to the children throws out my (minimal) rhythm. At some point in the (distant) future I’d like to be able to have a proper spinning wheel but that would definitely require a lot more time.

Shopping

I’ve had a nice amount of yarn arriving at the house this week – my ColourMart yarn from ebay arrived and looks lovely, I just need to find the perfect pattern for it. Then Ripples Crafts tweeted a pic of their Christmas-themed yarn for 2013 and I decided to buy some:

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It’ll be totally perfect for a Christmas sock themed knit a long I plan on taking part in later in the yarn. Whilst on the Ripples Craft site, three other skeins also fell into my shopping basket. No idea what I’ll do with them yet – the cream and teal colours scream colourwork at me – fair isle socks or a hat maybe, and the dark blue might possibly be the second colour in this Starlight shawl that I’m planning to make (the first being a grey/silvery colour)

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Where’s my bookmark?

I’m currently loving David Mitchell’s Back Story. I think he’s a really funny guy and although I missed Peep Show the first time round, I’m now working my way through the first series. I also bought A Gathering of Lace by Meg Swansen which arrived this week. I’ve not had a chance to do more than flick through it yet, but I shall try and be organised enough to put a review up in the next couple of weeks. I may also go through the knitting books I currently own and see about some reviews for those.

Family Life

We got our bunk beds this week, so the girls are happy and sleeping in proper beds for the first time in a month. Tomorrow, Zoe goes back to school, starting in Year 2, and I shall miss her company during the day. Another 2 weeks and then Eloise starts in nursery/pre-school, which seems entirely too soon on the one hand and entirely overdue on the other. She’s very excited about it, has loved buying her uniform and can’t wait to wear it. In the meantime, I am about halfway through the mountain of labelling I need to do.

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