Monday, April 28, 2008

Miss Moosie Has Arrived

Last year I saw a blurb in Spin Off about drop spindles made out of naturally shed Moose antlers. Being originally from Maine, land of many Moose, and Moose being one of my favorite animals, naturally I had to find out more. These gorgeous hand turned, one of a kind spindles are made by Jonathan and Sheila Bosworth of Journey Wheel in Acton, Massachusetts.
I went to their web site to order a spindle and found out that there was a waiting list. I added my name to the list and about six weeks ago, got an email that my Moosie was to be in the next group. I was so excited, it was all I could talk about at home for the last few weeks!
All through the process of making the spindle, Shelia would email updates and then finally pictures of the whorls. You choose which four you like the best, and in order of who emails back first with their requests, the spindles are assigned. Next we chose the wood for the spindle - I left this up to Sheila and she chose Bocote which has a stunning stripe pattern in it.
The finished Moosie arrived on Saturday with a sample of HOT PINK SPARKLY roving on it. Since Sheila and I have never met, I have no idea how she would know that hot pink is one of my most favorite colors and well, being much like a mag pie, I love anything sparkly.
Here is Miss Moosie:
She spins wonderfully! So wonderfully, that I couldn't stop spinning after using up the sample of roving:

Thank you Sheila and Jonathan!

Friday, April 25, 2008

A New Place to Knit, Spin, and Smell the Roses

Our Spring 2008 outside project is complete. Andy totally rebuilt our existing deck and added a pergola and two new raised flower beds.

This spring and summer, we will be spending lots of time sitting and enjoying ourselves. It's a perfect place to spin or knit and have a cocktail or two. It's very peaceful and tranquil which is just what we needed.

On the upper right of the pergola is wisteria that should bloom next year. From this view, behind the pergola is our new picket fence. We added this to keep the deer out of the flower beds. Pesky critters ate nearly all the blooms last year.

Thanks Andy, your the best!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Reward Knitting

Monday brought with it the completion of the Vogue shell. I knit it out of *gasp* inexpensive clearance yarn from Michaels. Shame on me, but who cares, it turned out well and blocked nicely.

Since I actually completed a project on time, meaning I can wear the shell in the upcoming season (not like finishing a nice wool cardigan at the beginning of the summer). I gave myself some reward knitting. Reward knitting is only given when there are currently less than three projects on the needles. If there are three already on the needles, yarn may be purchased for another project (or stash....) but nothing new may be started, no matter how badly I want to. Hi, Im Lara, and I start too many projects without finishing them. We won't even talk about whats on my spinning wheel and what's waiting to be carded right now.

In any case, here is the cute little cable and bobble bag Im knitting out of Noro Kochoran to tote my wallet in at MD Sheep and Wool. It's an adapted pattern from Ready Set Knit Cables. I got the idea for it at Backstitches. They were kind enough to let me borrow their bag to take notes before I began this one.

I like to stick my needles and small projects into the center pull balls. It looks very festive, like a flag, don't you think?

Monday, April 21, 2008

Luna Moth Shawl

Here is the hand spun Luna Moth shawl that I recently completed. The green is 50/50 merino, the varigated pink is 100% silk. It took three weeks to spin and ply and another three to knit the shawl. I spun singles of green, and singles of green with intermittant sections of pink silk and then plied them together. The result is a beautiful striped pattern in the shawl - a total accident that Im really happy with!

A close up of the shawl. It's much more vibrant in person.

Barnes & Noble

Last Thursday, I got to spend some time at the Lynchburg Barnes & Noble with Dianne and Linda. Dianne asked for some help on learning to crochet the edge on the awesome linnen shawl she knitted. Regardless of what she says, she took to crocheting very quickly. The linnen yarn she was using seemed to like to split more than stay together which made for tricky work.
It's always nice to be able to take a break, knit, relax, and spend time with good friends.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Needlefelting Weekend

This past Saturday I taught an Introduction to Needlefelting class at Backstitches in Lynchburg. I forgot to bring my camera, but do have a picture of the finished piece:
The class was full and it was great to meet so many new fiber people. Everyone left with a finished project and several people commented that they were surprised to learn a new technique and have a finished item completed in only two hours. Best of all Linda and Dianne came and I got to visit a little with them after class. Dianne brought me this beautiful lace alpaca from Wooly Wonka Fibers in the Wasatch colorway, shown here in one of Andy's one of a kind bowls:

Ive been collecting pin cushions for a while and decided to see if I could make a needlefelted one in the shape of a hat. It went very well and we were admiring it on the coffee table last night when Kiwi hopped up on the couch. Being an opportunist, I just had to see if he would model it for the camera:

Monday, April 7, 2008

The Cure For I Cord and the Braided Rug

So, what have you been knitting, my friend Linda asked me last week. Well, I really haven't have much timt to knit as Andy and I are making a braided rug out of yarn. To be more specific, an I Cord braided rug. It's about 2' x 4' and before you think that Ive completely lost my mind, keep reading!
It's made out of three stands of I Cord, braided together, mostly leftover sock yarns and a little Encore thrown in for good measure. My stash is completely cleaned out of little bits of sock yarn left overs. You know what that means....
room for MORE YARN! Good timing on that since there are two fiber festivals coming up in the very near future.

While flipping through a knitting magazine at Barnes and Noble I came across a cure for I Cord:

It's called the Embelish Knit. It can make miles and miles of I Cord in no time. You just feed the yarn through and crank the handle. What could be easier? We tried different types of yarn in it, and sock yarn works the best, thick yarns seem to get tangled up in it so stay away from those. It was only about $15 and well worth it.