Location: Crescent City, California, United States

I love to make things with my hands. My current passions are knitting and spinning.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Gifts Received

As promised, I am finally posting about the wonderful gifts my family gave me for Christmas. DH gave me the circular needle holder bag and the needle gauge pendant. My sis gave the book Knitted Lace of Estonia by Nancy Bush. One of my future goals is to be able to knit a lace shawl. I don't know if I would wear it very much, but they are so beautiful and elegant.

When my in-laws asked my husband what I would like for Christmas, he told them wool or llama/alpaca. I must interject here that my father-in-law's father was a wool buyer, back in the day, and also had some sheep of his own. My FIL is tickled to death that I am so interested in spinning and wooly things, and had fun finding a fleece for me.

This is aprox. 10 lbs. of mystery wool stuffed into a little cardboard box. It really isn't that yellow, but is rather dirty on the tips. My FIL thinks it is probably Rambouillet.

It has about a 3" staple length and a very fine crimp (you might be able to tell in the left hand corner of the above picture). There is allot of Lanolin/grease and it is very soft. Needless to say I was/am tickled to death with the generosity and thoughtfulness of this gift, and can't wait to wash and spin it. I'm hoping I can spin enough for the Tangled Yoke Cardigan by Eunny Jang.

Once I get that fleece washed, I have a brand new drum carder to use for getting it ready to spin!

This is the Strauch Finest 405 hand crank carder. It is quite a step up from my last drum carder that I purchased used.

When I am done spinning wool, I have this sheep rug kit to play with.

On to knitting progress. I finally did the finishing touches on these mittens. All they were waiting for was for me to finish embroidering the flowers. And, they were waiting a long time!! I started these probably 2 years ago.

The pattern is Olivia's Mittens by Kristin Nicholas. For details on the project, go here.

I also started and finished the Freyja Hat by Courtney Kelley. Instead of using the recommended yarn, I used Classic Elite Yarns - Miracle which is Alpaca and tencel.

I also started the Swirl Shawl, then had to re-start it because I didn't like the way the blocks were turning out. The second time around, they look much better.

Well, busy hands are happy hands :)

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Monday, January 04, 2010

Gifts Given

Wow, I can finally post pictures of the gifts I made people for Christmas!

First of all is a pair of socks made for my mom with Panda Soy - Print. I did a twisted rib pattern for the cuff on a standard sock pattern. The yarn is very soft and silky feeling, but does tend to split a little when you work with it. The yardage per ball is 185 yds. so I ended up using 2 balls to complete the socks. Mom was very pleased with her socks! The greatest quick knit gift of all was this wonderful neck cozy pattern (Koigu Neck Cozy) bu Karen Ko. It is quick and easy to knit (as long as you mark the right side to keep track of your knitting). I ended up making 3 of them for different people.

The first one that I made was for my sis. It is knit with Ellyn Cooper's Yarn Sonnets Oingling?, colorway Spice Grove. The yarn is bamboo or soy, can't find the label right now.

Here is a close-up of the yarn.....Pretty, isn't it?

The second one was made for my Secret Pal at work. The yarn is Manos del Uruguay Silk Blend.

The third one was a last minute gift for my MIL and was knit in 2 days. I used Mainland yarn by Plymouth. It is Baby Alpaca and Silk 80/20, color - "#6". I give it a 10+ on the softness scale! I guess I was in such a rush that I didn't get a picture of this one, but you get the idea.

A day or two after Christmas I cast on another pair of socks. This yarn was in my stash. I am just knitting a basice sock with it. I haven't decided who I am knitting it for, but probably should by the time I get to the foot!

Stay tuned for my next post "Gifts Received". I can't wait to show you all the purty things I got for Christmas. My family loves me!!

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