Between getting sidetracked by the Ravelry Tour de Fleece and trying to get ready for Sock Summit another month has spun by with not as much to show for it as I’d planned. Still, things have been done, or are getting close. (12 days left!)
First up the spinning accomplished for the TdF
Fiber: 4 ounces Limegreenjelly merino/tencel/angelina blend spun two-ply.
Yardage: ca 460 yds
Equipment: Louet Victoria
This was great fiber to spin and I very much enjoyed being on Jo’s Jelly Legs Team that I’ve signed up to be on her new Jelly Legs Forum. Note to self: Stop signing into new forums on Ravelry!
Meanwhile, I’ve been madly knitting socks for the Sock Summit (what else?). Pity I’m such a slow knitter! You’ll have to take my word for it that I knit Ed a pair of socks. I keep forgetting to take pictures of them. Nor have I thought to take a picture of the socks in progress for me to wear.
The green yarn is Cascade 220 used to tie bouts of 50 as I wrapped the freshly spun yarn around the niddy noddy.
Handspun Sock Yarn
Specs: 4 ounces Crown Mountain Farms Corriedale pencil roving (can’t find the tag for the colorway)
3 ply (not chain plyed) ca 365 yards.
My socks are almost finished. I’m doing both at the same time. Well, sort of. I knit a couple inches on one, then a couple inches on the other. They are vanilla plain, toe up socks. No time for fancy these days.
My main spinning for the Tour de Fleece was spindling while exercising. My first choice wasn’t that great what with more vm than I like. Grannie Linda suggested just leaving it in and letting the wash take care of it. Problem is, some of it’s very fine, hard pieces of matter that poke and stick. It seems that if I leave it in it’ll be full of tiny irritants. I remember reading some time back, that people who think they’re allegic to wool are more likely reacting to fiber that hasn’t been well cleaned, it’s the vm that’s causing the rashes.
My modus operandus for 15 – 20 minutes many days during the TdF.
During the long wet days of winter Ed set his bike up on the back porch so we’d be more diligent about exercising. Going nowhere for 20 minutes is downright mind-numbing and it didn’t take too many days before my spindle was learning to avoid the pedal. On Saturday I decided it was time to capture my spinning adventure (heehee). The camera set, Record clicked, hop on the bike and away to spinning. The video was edited and posted to YouTube that evening. I’d love to have you see it! Spinning Spinner .
(I thought about putting it directly in this post but didn’t for the sake of dial-up users)
A heat wave has moved into the Pacific Northwest. Yesterday we had temps to 98, today we hit 100, forecast for tomorrow is 102! Hot. We manage to keep it a bit cooler in the house by closing all windows, doors and drapes by 9am. The catalpa tree we planted 22 years ago has gone large enough to spread its cooling shade well over a good portion of the south side of the house. Tomorrow I may just have to take the time to dash over to the creek for a good cool down. Along with hordes of others.
The flower fields are in full bloom.
Just when I’ve got my schedule more or less figured out for the month of July, getting ready for Sock Summit, a tour comes along. The siren song reached my ears and wooed me. How could I pass up my third year in a row on the tour? Especially when Freestylefiber Jo burned my ears.
Now, I dare not spend much time at Ravelry – it gets quickly snatched leaving me wondering what happened to the evening. If it weren’t for wanting to know what’s being discussed on the Sock Summit forum (must be aware of the talk there) and my commitment to the International Moleskine Exchange (I’ll be sad and glad when my moley is returned and that obligation is finished) I’d be avoiding Raverly like the plague. But then it happened. I was merrily sailing along quickly checking vital threads when my ears were burned and I heard the call to join the team Jelly Legs in the Tour de Fleece. Who could resist such a team? Not I.
Oh I debated all right. I laid in bed arguing that it was foolishness to even mildly consider it.
“But I’m spinning practically every day anyway,” the cheerleader convincingly enticed. “And there’s the perfect orange/purple/blue batt you picked up at Black Sheep you should spin.”
“You have too many things going on right now, ” Reason insisted.
“If you’re quick and steady maybe you’ll get it spun and knit for Sock Summit.” Ha ha. Snort. “Besides, you could spindle while exercising. By the way, When are you going to make a video of spindle spinning for youtube?”
Tour de Fleece Regulations require that a new spinning project is started on the day the Tour de France starts (July 4th). That was the folly of it: I was closing in on finishing the Precious fiber I’d purchased from Freestylefiber Jo months ago. I really hope to get it woven in time to wear it to Sock Summit. (Louder snort)
I caved. Hauled out the OrangePurpleBlue fiber and started spindling madly away. Madly. Yep. Angst crept in as the days past and very little yarn was building up on the spindle during my allotted 20 minutes of exercise and spindling. The batt has tons multitudes of vegetable matter flecked throughout every inch. Argh. I’m so spoiled with beautifully cleaned and prepped roving (Precious has been like flowing silk through my fingers). By Wednesday I was totally fed up with trying to spin this stuff when there’s so much spinning I’d like to get done. (It is pretty and I think it’d make wicked fab socks, someday.)
While the grandbabies napped I pulled out the wheel and soothed my soul with silence and the Precious Fiber for almost an hour as I planned my next attack on the TdF course.
Any proficient cyclist knows that the equipment needs to be in top shape for competition. This batt was not in top form. Time to change fiber gears. A few weeks ago I’d begun spinning small samples of the various fibers I use in my Fiber Sample Packs with the plan to knit one tiny sock from each. Day 1 spin and ply, Day 2 knit the sock. It’d been working decently for the week I’d been at it. Pulling a spindle out of the Sock Summit stock pile I found some Tunis and began spinning.
After two days and 35 minutes into the Tunis it too has been briefly set aside due to more VM than I want to deal with right now. This morning I pulled out some grey Romeldale and commenced spinning happily. 3 grams of fiber spun into singles, plyed this evening and now drying on the niddy noddy. Tomorrow I’ll finish the Tunis, knit the Romeldale sock and just maybe even finish spinning the singles of Precious.
I was planning to spin and knit tonight but was lured away by trying to figure out Picasa 3 mosiac feature.
I need to learn how to fine tune it, someday. For now it’s a start! The Precious Fiber, a merino/tencel/angelin blend is the purple/mauve/pink fiber being spun on the wheel. The grey romeldale was spun on a 1.9 ounce/55 grams Turkish Spindle.
In between all the spinning there’s been gardening; a three day jaunt with three friends, over the Cascades to relax, see the Sister’s Rodeo and celebrate a birthday; Picking 20 pounds of blueberries with Aurora; Knitting socks, Watching the grandbabies for three days while son and his wife flew to Idaho to find a house; Attending barbecues; And dozens of spindles being made and either sent off to new owners or tucked into boxes for Sock Summit. (The Summer of Sock Summit) I’ve also been enjoying preparing for and teaching the Adult Sunday School lessons. We’ve been in the Psalms the past few Sundays. It’s been wonderful diving back into chapters filled with the riches and wonder of God. At times it’s been hard to stay focused and keep up the energy for everything but then I read a chapter and feel encouraged and blessed.