Sunday, August 3, 2008

Some knitting, some spinning, and a sheep shearer named Nick . . . .

I finally finished the Big Black Scarf and managed to get a picture that shows the stitch pattern.

The pattern is the Graphic Designer Scarf I, from Karin in Ontario, Canada. She's got some great patterns over there; some free and some for sale. And be sure to check out her "Knitting Funnies"; the KISS musician cracked me up!

Anyway, here's a close up of the pattern, although Karin's in green shows up much better:

I picked this to go with the the Lillehammer hat; I think the angular stitch pattern reflects the geometric colorwork. And, that makes another Christmas present done and dusted and put in the box.

I'm still slogging away on "The Blob", but it's now getting big enough that it's not really a portable project anymore.

Yes, I did purposely wadded it up like that so the recipient can't tell what it is; and yes, I did purposely screw up the coloring for the same reason. While I wasn't all that enthused to be working with this yarn, I do have to admit that it looks a lot better in real life than it does here; enough so that I think I might make one for myself in another colorway.

Last week in the "Jonesin' for StitchJones" forum on Ravelry, Michelle, was lusting over a StitchJones roving called "Midnight Meadow", but she's not a spinner (yet) and didn't know what she'd do with it. I love spinning Sharon's fiber and volunteered to spin it for her if she'd pay for the fiber and tell me what she wanted. She agreed to pay for the fiber, Sharon would bring it to me on Westside Wednesday, and I'd start right away. My evil plan to convert all knitters into spinners was working!

When Michelle said she didn't know what she wanted because she's never knit with hand spun, and couldn't grasp getting to "design" her own yarn, I walked her through the process. I usually start backwards: What do I want to make with this? What weight yarn do I want? Do I want a tweed, a color shift, a solid color? Do I want to add some sparkle, glitz, or beads to the yarn before it's knit?

Michelle decided she wanted a scarf out of this so we decided on a 2-ply, sock weight yarn; and since it was the colors that attracted her in the first place, we want to preserve the color shift. I posted a picture of the first bobbin in my Ravelry stash, along with a picture from a skein with plied with strand of pearlescent Mylar. Michelle, smart girl that she is, liked the little shine from the Mylar so I'll add that in when I ply. I finished up the second bobbin and now they'll rest and let the twist relax until next weekend when I'll get them plied up and the twist set.

Speaking of Westside Wednesday, here are some shots of our little group 'o knitters and spinners and PDX Knit Bloggers:

Just over a year ago, this group didn't even exist; and we've already outgrown two venues in the past year!

We started out at a local coffee shop in a shopping area, but the lighting was too low for winters, and then when they started giving the evil eye to this raucous, rowdy bunch, we moved to a Starbucks for several months.

Pretty soon, we had attracted some avid spinners and we were using every single chair in the Starbucks. And, the employees kept raising the volume of background music to try and drown out our conversation, so we had to find a new place. A place with lots of chairs, readily available food and drink, good lighting, room for the spinners and their wheels, and empty tables for the indie dyers to spread out their wares:

Fortunately, in the same shopping area is a Haggen Grocery Store, which has a large seating area near their takeout food section. And it's mostly glass, so we have good light, there's no "background" music to shout over, there's plenty of space for us to spread out, and no one (at least so far) has seemed put out by our presence; in fact, some people have wandered in to see what all the laughter is about! I think we may be the only knitting group that meets in a grocery store! I mean, really, how many can there be?

Oh yeah, one of those PDX Knit Bloggers went on vacation in New Zealand, where she took some beautiful photos, went to the Ashford Craft Shop, the Cadbury Chocolate factory, and sorts of other wonderful places. And she brought me this:

My very own Australian sheep-shearer named "Nick"!


  1. Ohhh I like that stitch on the scarf! That may become a couple christmas presents on this end too!
    There's actually a monday night grocery store knitting group down here too, which just reminded me I forgot to go tonight!

  2. You've been tagged!!

    The rules:
    1. Link back to the person who tagged you
    2. Mention the rules on your blog
    3. Tell about 6 unspectacular quirks of yours
    4. Tag 6 following bloggers by linking to them
    5. Leave a comment on each of the tagged bloggers' blogs letting them know they've been tagged

    I hope you have fun!

  3. That picture of the KISS rocker in Gene Simmons makeup, holding some knitting, was too funny! Maybe I should let Karin know I carry Gene Simmons sock yarn...?

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