handspunOne of the places I visited while on holiday was ‘Twist Fibre Crafts’ in Newburgh. The guy who was running the shop that day very kindly ran through the basics on spinning. When I got home, I pulled out the wads of lopi roving I’ve had sitting for well over a year and gave it a try.

Prior to this, the only other time I’ve tried spinning successfully was as part of a museum demonstration. Under supervision, I’d managed to spin reasonably even fine  long thread, from fleece that I’d just carded, using a ‘replica’ spindle. The spindle was a flat stone with a hole drilled at the balance point and a short pointed dowel wedged into the hole. At the end of the day, the folks running the activities gave me one of the replica spindles to take away. . I tried again at home with lopi roving, only to find that I couldn’t spin as finely nor could I get more than 6 inches of thread going before it broke or the spindle fell apart…

The little ball of lumpy yarn pictured here is the result of my latest attempts. It’s slubby, about 14grams and bulky weight or thereabouts.  This was the maximum I could get on the ‘stick’ of the same replica spindle I’d previously given up on.  If I try spinning again, I think I’m gonna cheat and glue the stick into the stone. Ok, not ideal, but it’ll save my poor toes!  🙂

I’m wondering, apart from forgetting how, could the different experiences I’ve had be anything to do with the different fibres I’ve tried?
The museum fleece was straight from the sheep, stuck in the freezer for a month and combed/carded. All the natural oils/lanolin were still in it.
The lopi roving I used after that was a gift from a friend who’d just come back from Iceland. It looks like it’s been treated to within an inch of its life by comparison – washed, combed/carded, dyed – no lanolin left.


Stash busting, rant and plans


http://alexandrasknits.blogspot.com/ has a clear set of instructions for making a knitting needle roll. Now, if I made one that’d reduce my sewing stash a little.

But…Oops, too much yarn My yarn stash has exploded! I picked up some Jojoland melody, more Noro kureyon, a random Rowan boucle, Lamb’s Pride, a couple of patterns and some SWTC bamboo yarn.

Pink overkill going on here. Why does every yarn company assume that pink should be in the majority of their ‘multi-color’ schemes?!! The world does not revolve around knitters who like pink/pastels! The bamboo stuff is way too pink! And the kureyon yarns each have more pink than the shade chart suggested. GRRRR 😡

The bamboo colorway is ‘purplexed’ and the pictures I saw of it looked ok, with more purple than pink. The batch I got, well I’m going to have to find another use for it or re-dye it. The person it was for is worse than me about their dislike of this color.

The kureyon is less of a pain – I was needing pink aran weight for the toddler Lizard Ridge hat that I’ll be making for my friend’s kid. I’d originally decided kureyon wasn’t going to work, because the shades with lots of pink (that I didn’t buy) had colors in them that the child wasn’t so keen on. All I need to do now is remove the offending sections with some color either side and presto! There’s the multi-color pink for the hat, and I have some lovely shades leftover. 🙂

Centre pull ball


A friend paid a flying visit last night before heading off to the states for 18 months. They’d been out in Vietnam for the last 3 months but their work decided to move them. It was fun catching up:)

In an idle moment before heading round to see them, I tried winding my very first centre pull ball. knittinghelp.com is useful! It turned out quite well I think 🙂

Must get more yarn…


Some friends were round for lunch on Sunday with their toddler. The little one saw the lizard ridge hat and declared that she really liked it, so I’m thinking maybe make up a smaller version for her christmas present. That’s thinking too far ahead! aargh!  She likes pink and purple so I’m tracking down appropriate shades of kureyon. At least it won’t be solid pink – I could never work with that. eugh!

Oops Hat – this was unplanned…

Hats, Stash

I’ve had a bad day 😦 I had to come home early from work, because my voice went – again! Actually, it hasn’t really been back – I lost the voice 8 days ago. Is a bit of a ****, as my job requires me to talk to folk in several depts most days. Cue much frustration and grumpiness…

Then I thought about the new noro kureyon that I bought for my stash the other day – not the green stuff – but earthtones, and the hat pattern I found when I was researching ideas for my wavy hat. Then it sort of cast itself on and seemed to knit up real fast (for me):


I know it looks like one end of the needle has a stitch about to drop off the point – it didn’t 🙂 I got to the point where I was ready to shape the crown – in one afternoon/evening.