Tuesday, September 18, 2007


My first fiber-fest!

It was a gorgeous day, and I must say I enjoyed the drive down nearly as much as browsing the exhibits (which is good, as it took about as long)

It was also perfect sweater-weather. Just the right side of cool. I've resolved that I need to make a better sweater for wearing in public like that. I felt a little embarrassed of my not-quite fitting felted tweed. FPS would have been great, but it was a bit nippy for that.

I didn't come home with anything (other than half a rootbeer float), which wasn't completely the plan, but not really unexpected either. I didn't plan at all to get things I actually needed, and the focus of the exhibits was spinning material, not knitting.

This was, honestly the first time I'd seen people actually spinning. It was fascinating. The techie in me is embarrassed to admit that I was paying so much attention to their hands I didn't even look at how the wheel was working - it was just magically twisting and sucking up the yarn. Too bad, I'm sure the wheel mechanics were fascinating too.

I was hoping a bit that I could get a basic 'learn to drop-spindle' set and enough instruction to set me on my way, but pretty much everyone was using wheels, though I did get to try one of them (fun! and not as hard as I thought!). I *almost* went over to the kids area where they were doing hands-on CD spindle lessons, but chickened out. There wasn't a heck of a selection of spindles to begin with.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Caribbean Bubbles?

Proposed name for new stole. Pictures pending.

I did pick up my beads this weekend, and finished winding the lace (at last!) and cast on for my new shawl.

The beading was a little rough to start (ha! The first row took me forever and I stabbed myself a bunch and hated it - it was *agonizing* to start) but I am getting the hang of it, and things are much smoother now.

I also forgot to read the fine print on the bead site, where it said that 'a 1.10mm crochet hook is the appropriate size for size 8/0 beads if you string them first. If you want to put the hook *through* the bead, you will need a .75 or mm hook'.

Needless to say my 1.10 mm hook does not fit through the beads. So I improvised with guitar string (again). It works pretty well, though the ends are sharper than ideal. I can store about a row and a half's worth of beads on it without worrying about them falling off, which is convenient, and seems I wouldn't be able to do with the hook.

The hook does seem a reasonable size for repair and utility work though, so not all is lost.

I feel a bit conflicted about this project and the source of the design. Allow me to expound:

I started with the inspiration from The Baltic Sea Stole (ravelry) - essentially I saw a picture of it worked in variegated yarn and thought 'oh, that pattern (which I recognize as 'Japanese Feather' from Barbra Walker) looks decent even with the fairly heavy variegation. I think I'll try it.'

So I did, and, it did, and I began place to make a shawl with that yarn and that pattern. I decided I didn't want to follow the Baltic Sea pattern, since I didn't like the squared off edge - much prefer to keep the natural curve of the lace.

I also discovered that there wasn't very much distinction between the panels to show of the curves (I'd already forgotten that Baltic Sea Stole worked an extra yo there to create negative space between the panels). Instead, I figured a column of beads might make a nice divider.

Unwittingly, I ended up with almost exactly Beaded Lace Scarf II (ravelry). I didn't *mean* to reverse engineer it, it just sort of happened.

*Ok, I looked a little closer and feel a little better. 1) I think it uses a slightly different stitch pattern, not Japanese Feather. 2) the beading is done differently. I'm not sure how, but theirs sit sideways, and mine sit vertically.

Friday, September 7, 2007

Beads came!

My mum let me know my beads have arrived. (I had them shipped there since our accommodations are so topsy-turvy right now).


I can't go get them!

We're making another offer on another house this evening (third time's the charm? I'm so jaded on this now you could make a bracelet out of me). So not tonight.

Then tomorrow there's *the football game* with M's work people. Much fun.

So, who knows.

I guess that means I should finish winding the rest of that laceweight. (would you believe the first thing I dug out of my yarn box in the garage was my paper-towel-tube nostepinne?)