Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Cabernet Infinity Scarf

This one has been a long time in the making simply because I only picked it up occasionally. I've been doing more sewing and weaving lately than I have knitting.

This is the Cabernet Infinity Scarf from the pattern by Monika Sirna  I started it way back in January.

Knitted Cowl

The fact that it matches the Saori hat was unintentional and just a bonus.

Saori hat and knitted cowl

I just have to say that I'm not all that impressed with the yarn I used. In the skein it was deliciously soft and a bright royal blue that I was in love with -- BUT --

Bleeding dye
  • It split like crazy while being knit.
  • The high silk content meant that wisps of it clung to, and snagged on, the dry spots on my fingers while I was knitting.
  • The dye tinted my hands blue while I was knitting.
  • And a LOT of dye came out of the finished article when I did it's wet finishing!
  • The colour was visibly duller after wet finishing.
The yarn was Knitpicks Diadem Solid in the Sapphire colourway. Interesting that that particular colourway is no longer available. Maybe the dye problem was limited to only that colour? I still won't be buying any more though. The splitting and fuzzing was annoying enough alone, without the additional annoyance of the blue dye bleeding.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Late for Saint Patty

Okay, this is more than a little late for St. Patrick's Day, but inspired by Gene Black's example I had to try spinning up a little of the green and gold.

Shamrock green and a touch o' the gold

And no, that little tag that says $7 does not mean this skein is for sale. Whenever I can I reattach the fibre vendor's tag to the skein so that I can remember the fibre content and the source. It's incredible how fast I can forget such things otherwise! This was 2oz of "local wool" hand dyed by HummingBeeFarm. It blows my mind how far this spinning technique can take 2oz of yarn! This is a large and lofty yet lightweight skein.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Side Fringe

Played around a bit with using clasped weft paired with thrums to create a side fringing effect.

Clasped weft side fringes.

The weft yarn has now gradually worked its way toward orange. I have kept the colour progression of the Kauni Rainbow yarn in the main weft by labelling the bobbins and then winding them onto one bobbin then rewinding them onto another so the colour is reversed and lines up with the bobbins that come before and after. Clear as mud? Sorry, it's hard to explain, but easy to actually do.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Sunshine On a Rainy Day

It's gloomy and rainy here today but I'm working on my own little patch of sunshine.

This part brings to mind sea creatures dancing in a rainbow ocean.

Sea creatures?

I'm really happy with how the inlay in this next section worked out. I used a thin strand of handspun that had a lot of variation in colour, and I made four passes with it before each clasped weft pick. I love the way it distorted the weft around it, allowing more of the warp threads to show, and packed in until it was laying diagonally in places. Fun!

Loving this section!

And here's where, at 10:08am, I stopped for the morning. Time to get on with doing some other things with my day!

10:08 am

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

A Fresh Start

After resleying for a closer sett I finally got this warp retied to the breast beam and ready to go again.

March 18, 2015

Cheerful, bright colours for a garden banner. There will be way more yardage than I need so I'm just going to play and then use my favourite section for the banner and the rest will be set aside to "renew" the banner as it fades and is subject to weather wear and tear. 

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Second Attempt

I'm happier with the plying on this skein.

Much happier with the plying on this second skein.

I'm using a slightly different approach and it is resulting in more even plying through the thick sections. This time I held the two strands being plied in opposite hands. I originally started off trying to keep the thick and thin strand tensioned while holding the thin thread loosely and allowing it to wrap/ply, but I hadn't gone far when I discovered it worked better for me doing it the other way. So after a bit of experimenting I held the thin black thread fairly taut and let the softly spun thick and thin strand do the wrapping/ply. I found I was better able to control the rate of plying through the thick areas this way.

Now I just need more practice. And that will require more of a resource I seem to be in terribly short supply of lately --- TIME!

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Fibres West 2015

Friday was my day to attend Fibres West in Cloverdale, BC. 

If you are interested you can click the photo to enlarge it.

If you aren't a "fibre type", it might not seem like much, but each of those booths is jam packed full of fibre goodness that I don't normally have easy access to. I tend to stock up, binge style, once or twice a year.


I could spend hours shopping at such an event, while the whole idea of a day spent browsing fibre arts related booths could bring my husband to tears I think. Loving man that he is though, he drove me down, uncomplaining, only to return a few hours later when I texted to let him know that I had had enough (or had spent enough --- which is the same thing in my books.)

This is the haul I came home with. 10 different colourways of beautiful roving dyed by the folks at the HummingBeeFarms booth, and a large cone of black mercerized 2/8 cotton. It will all eventually make its way into my weaving projects.

FibresWest haul

I wasn't home long before I was trying it out!

Loosely spun thick n thin single

The vendor at HummingBeeFarms booth had some lovely skeins of Thick'n'Thin yarn for sale. She was good enough to explain her technique to me so that I could go home with an armload of her beautiful hand dyed skeins to give the technique a whirl.

Merino plied with viscose thread.

I'm not there yet, hers was more uniformly plied than mine. But I've discussed the issue with a few kind forum members and I have some ideas to try to see if I can't get something closer to what I had been shown in the booth. Don't get me wrong, I DO like this skein, I just think I can do better.