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The yarn is here, the yarn is here!

Yarny goodness

The postal person stealthily put it on my porch, and there it was when I opened to door to walk up the driveway to check the mail.  I know what I’m doing tomorrow  . . .


Trying to blend in

the giant skein of overdyed blue finally dried, and taking advice from the commenters, I decided to test the limits of the All-Powerful Reeling Machine and see if it could hold all 1200 yards of yarn. It was doing well, but then the yarn got a bit tangled in one of the wire loops holding the skeiner together and it frayed rather severely. I went ahead and broke it off and started a second ball.

Taking the air

Here they are, enjoying the sun on what is likely to be the last warm day of the year.

Would a standard sized ball winder be able to hold about 1200 yards of fingering weight yarn  (11 ounces) in one ball? Having dyed this lovely,  continuous, knot-free skein, I’d hate to have to break it.

When a weaver says, “I’m destashing, would you like to come get stuff before I take it to the Goodwill?” always say yes. Fellow member of  Seaview Weavers Heather did just that, and not only did I get some nice fabric, but I seriously scored in the yarn department.  Among other goodies, a two pound cone of blue-grey fingering weight alpaca, which promptly set me thinking about knitted shawls.  The pattern I decided on for the first one is the Seascape Shawl from Fiber Trends, but I wanted the yarn to be bluer, not so grey. 

 Cone o’yarn

Here’s the cone, after winding off a shawl’s worth of yarn. Good thing it was on the floor, or I’d be suffering from Blue Lung Disease from inhaling all those particles!

 While I pondered colors I knitted a sample in a lace pattern I’d been wanting to try,  bound off, gave it a cursory wash, then threw it in the dye pot with about a 1/4 t. of turquoise stock solution and glug of vinegar.  About 45 minutes later


it was cooling in an exhausted dyebath.  Not really the way you are supposed to do it, but it’s just a sample, right? Once it was pinned out and all dry

All dry

it was a teal color — lovely, but not what I had in mind for the shawl.  I wound off more small skeins and overdyed them with different colors.

Overdyed skeins

From left: Sky Blue, Red, and Purple.

The purple is a lovely dark shade.  The red is very interesting.  There are blue undertones and a dark red halo.  I’ll do something with this that involves grapes, I think, as it reminds me of the bloom that is on the outside of dark unwashed grapes. And the blue on the left is just what I wanted!  In the jar, the Sky Blue stock solution looked like it might be too close in color to the yarn, but somehow it intensified only the blue and not the grey.  I just love it.

I washed the  large skein, made more stock solution, simmered, and let it rest.

Shawl yarn

My husband peered into the pot on top of the stove and asked, “Blue spaghetti again?” Yup.

In other news, Sandy managed to figure out what the Mystery Object is, although both Bonnie and Syne had good ideas. It’s a fake pregnancy — my daughter is playing the very pregnant charcter Edna Louise in her school’s production of Come Back to Five and Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy DeanLisa may have Grossman’s Gams, but I have Bear’s Belly.

So nice!

Cally at t’katch — the Language of Weaving tagged me for the Nice Award, which just thrills me no end! Thank you, Cally. Not only do you have a marvelous site, but you’ve spurred me to learn how to put in image in my sidebar.

With the award comes great responsibility: “This award is for those bloggers who are nice people; good blog friends and those who inspire good feelings and inspiration. Also for those who are a positive influence on our blogging world. Once you’ve been awarded, please pass it on to 7 others who you feel are deserving of this award.”

I’m taking it on myself to decide that I can’t award it to anyone who I know has already gotten it, so that takes Bonnie and Syne out of the list of possibles.  So, I tag:

Lisa, at The Tsarina Tsays.  Lisa is sort of the godmother of my blog, since a mutual online acquantance mentioned she had started one, I started reading it, then clicked on her WordPress button and found out that I could do it too.  Since then, we’ve posted lots of comments on each others blogs, had a busy non-blog correspondance, and even gone yarn shopping together in New York.  Lisa is an inspiration to knitters everywhere, and a sock designer that, well, blows my socks off!  And, she was kind enough to suggest that I ask her yarn supplier,

Jennifer at NYS Farm — updates  if she could point me to sources for undyed yarn.  Jennifer not only offered to sell to me from her supply, but  has been incredibly generous with information about dyeing.  Plus,  she knows the finer points of chicken butchering (and a whole lot more) , and she wrote a brilliant set of rules regarding garage sales.

Cathy-Cate at Hither and Yarn has great flower photos, knits and posts about lovely projects, and even has free knitting patterns.

I really enjoy stopping in at Theresa’s Tales of a Keyboard Biologist. She has the sweetest baby, and anyone who manages to knit while nursing gets a gold star in my book.

Lene at DancesWithWool takes me to the far north of Finland and shares the beauty that surrounds her as well as her amazing knitting.

Allan at Panabasis finds marvelous images and posts them with inimitable commentary. It’s always a treat when there is something new up.

And last,  but certainly not least (no one here is least) Stephanie, AKA The Yarn Harlot  who wittily, passionately, and generously tells us all about Knitting, Life, and Everything Else.

Lotsa odds’n’ends.

First, The Whipstick Knitters delivered our donations to the Seaman’s Church Institute on Monday. I made three of the forty-four knitted items from us that will be given to merchant seamen and women in the month of December, along with 16,000 more from other folks around the country. Yay, knitters!

The latest Traveling Socks got finished

and look how much yarn was leftover!  The pattern is Wendy’s Feather and Fan Sock, and it’s a nice, easy-to-work pattern. The yarn is Regia Crazy Color. They have since been washed, and are a wee bit big. I think I’ll scrub them down some in size , just the foot part– since they aren’t superwash, that should be doable. Washed, they aren’t as silly at the top.

I cast on for a scarf with the luscious Silk Maiden that I got in Victoria this summer. I am one of perhaps ten knitters in the country who had not made a drop-stitch scarf, so that’s what I did.


And look how much yarn was leftover! I may turn this scarf into something else someday, so I just worked those ends into the scarf without cutting them off. Do you think I should block it?

I picked the next-to-last batch of apples and made applesauce.

Hot stuff

So simple — just simmer quartered, cored apples with a little water until soft, then puree in the food processer. I ladled it into freezer bags and they’re now frozen stiff, awaiting mid-winter applesauce cravings.

I started making a costume item for the play my daughter’s in –here’s the preliminary pinning.

Mystery Object

Any ideas what it’ll be? Comment lines are now open  . . .