Thursday, June 07, 2007

scrolling and chewing

Thing One
Thank you so much for all of the wonderful comments on my Kilt Hose. Special thanks for the fashion suggestions. Brown corduroy. Inspired idea! I was born with this inability to dress myself in a flattering manner, which is a bit ironic given that my main hobby involves creating clothing. Any help I can get is welcomed.

Thing Two
I think I have things set up to do hat sales straight through Paypal. This means that I will email you the PDF of the pattern by (virtual) hand. So delivery won't necessarily be immediate. Right now I'm guaranteeing 24 hours, unless I'm out of town, in which case I will make a note on the pattern page so buyers are warned. Here is the button that will hopefully make sales work again. Please let me know if it doesn't work for some reason. Please go to the original hat post if you want to buy the pattern.

I'll be updating the hat post itself shortly after I post this. Back in business!

Thing Three
I've been working on a sock in the Schaefer Anne I bought with my gift certificate from last summer's Amazing Lace knitalong. It's about time! I got a fabric I liked with a size 00 needle (1.75mm), at 11 stitches per inch. The yarn is really thin for a fingering weight, but now that I've found a gauge I like for it, knitting with it is a pure pleasure. This is one of the most pleasurable pure knitting experiences I've had in a while. I was a bit wary of the mohair content, but I think my aversion to mohair is really just an aversion to Lambs' Pride. Now I know better.

I'm using the Scroll Lace pattern from Barbara Walker's first treasury of knitting patterns. It's very similar to the Scroll Lace pattern in the second Sensational Knitted Socks book by Charlene Schurch. I haven't seen that pattern in person, but I suspect it's the very same thing, with the exception that the Walker pattern repeat size is a little bigger. It's one of those patterns that is incredibly easy to adjust for a variety of repeat sizes, though, so I'm getting the same effect as I've seen from people using the Schurch book. I chose to go with the larger repeat size because of my tight gauge with this yarn. Here are a few photos:

Scroll lace sock closeup

scroll sock

scroll sock inside

Isn't it just enthralling? It looks a little like entrelac, but isn't. It's a really easy pattern to knit and memorize, and knits up incredibly quickly. I can't believe how much progress I made in just a few days, given that I have 80 stitches per round. I think I'll write up a little free pattern for the socks when I finish them. I charted out the Walker version of the pattern, and you'll be surprised to see what the chart looks like, in comparison to what the knitted fabric looks like.

Thing Four
When I haven't been knitting, I've been plying. My plying technique still isn't really a technique as much as it is me flailing around, and trying to get things to work. I'm working on it, though. I have great advice to try to put into practice from one friend, but if any of you have more advice on plying from a center pull ball on a drop spindle, give it up! I need an advice library that's as large as possible to sample from, as I try to create a technique that melds with my natural spazzy ways. Here's a photo of the 2-ply I created from the singles I showed you a couple of weeks ago:

First Handspun

As you can see, the yarn is incredibly hairy, which I think only hindered me. The bit I measured is 24 wraps per inch, but I only sampled one section, and I think that section is a bit thinner than the average for the skein. I know that I slightly overplied it, based on how it hung when I first took it off the niddy noddy. But after setting it, it hung in a nice balanced loop, which makes me proud.

Brenda is being my spinning enabler, and sent me a package of new fibers to sample, from the Wonder Wool festival in Wales. It just arrived yesterday, and I immediately started spinning again, trying to improve my drafting technique (visible success already) and plying technique (possible slight success already). I'm just playing around with some mystery roving (possibly Romney) right now, but have dyed Blue Faced Leicester and 4 different natural colors of Shetland, just waiting to be turned into a real project. The BFL will be my first dyed wool, and the Shetland is of course just begging to be colorwork of some sort.

I think that the fleece deal has fallen through, which is a bit ironic, as it was what got me spinning in the first place. But I'm happy with the materials I have to work with right now, and still plan to buy a fleece (or three) at New Hampshire Sheep and Wool next Spring. My eventual goal is to create items from wool I've processed, spun, (dyed?), and knit up all by hand. Even better, to create items that I'd be proud to give away as gifts. I owe several people a lot already, for their generous sharing of time, advice, and of course wool. Nothing says thank you like socks and shawls knit from handspun yarn. I'm biting off a lot, but I'll eventually finish chewing it all. (yum. handspun, hand knit, hand chewed socks!)

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Blogger Becki said...

My cat is a wool-sucker, so I think she'd love the idea of hand chewed socks. ;)

I am still totally in love with that scroll design and the yarn.

6/07/2007 8:44 AM  
Blogger Probably Jane said...

The texture on those socks is enthralling - look forward to a pattern

6/07/2007 9:05 AM  
Blogger doulicia said...

It totally looks like entrelac, just with the right and wrong sides reversed.

6/07/2007 10:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Scroll Lace is beautiful on both sides! If it isn't classified as a reversible pattern, maybe it should be...

The only advice I'd give you about the spindle plying is to give Andean plying a shot, instead of the center-pull-ball method. I have a really hard time keeping the plying ball from tangling, but the Andean method works very well for me. as long as the bracelet doesn't get too thick. Anyway, I think your spindle-plied yarn is lovely. :-) It's incredibly fine--the photo with the penny is breathtaking!

6/07/2007 11:24 AM  
Blogger Craftlover said...

Oh, I love the Scroll Lace pattern, it's really cool and elegant!
I am moved to buy this book!! :)

6/07/2007 3:47 PM  
Blogger pamela wynne said...

The scroll lace is lovely! So what size needles did you end up using with the Anne?

6/07/2007 4:32 PM  
Blogger Elinor said...

I'm just now catching up on Bloglines but I think brown corduroy would go so well with those absolutely gorgeous kilt hose!!! They look so pretty! If I had a pair, I think I'd just sit around all day looking at my feet. :-)

6/07/2007 5:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ditto on the Andean plying. Check out

Happy Spinning!


6/07/2007 9:01 PM  
Blogger Romi said...

Oooooh! I *love* Thing Three!

6/08/2007 8:29 PM  
Blogger NikkiJ said...

Is this very cool, very creepy looking yarn very itchy?

6/21/2007 5:06 PM  

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