So, what have I been up to these past few weeks?
1. Vacation! Renee and I took a road trip back home to see our respective families, and a great time was had by all. We even managed to take a detour to our old college town of Athens, Ohio, which was highly nostalgic and lots of fun. Oh, Ohio... New York is wonderful, but I'll always be a Midwestern girl at heart. :)
2. Holiday Knitting! Though I always love to do some holiday knitting, this year was the crazy exception: I knit something for absolutely every person on my list. (I know, right??) As of right now, I only have one WIP left to finish, once I buckle down and commit the time to finish it up. I'm so, so happy with everything I made this year, and though I can't go into detail about all the items since most of my family knows about my blog and might stop by, I'll be sure to fill you in after the holidays!
3. Writing! The minute the weather turned chilly, my writing muse started hammering at me to get back to writing fiction, and I've made some incredible progress on one of my long-stagnating novels. It's been so great to see my characters coming to life on the page again! I don't talk about my writing very often, but it's something I've done my whole life, and there are some days (aka, Good Writing Days) that I seriously consider the possibility of writing full-time and seeing what happens. For now, though, I'll just focus on finishing the three (yep, three) unfinished novels that I've been slowly, slowly adding on to.
4. Spinning Like Crazy! Though I've been absent from the blogosphere, I've still been spinning up a storm! I have four new yarns to share with you, with a fifth soon to follow as soon as I full and dry it. And, of course, there's something new and exciting on the wheel already, which I'm also super-excited to share!
On to the handspun! :)
First, I finished the gorgeous superwash BFL from the Into the Whirled club (colorway "Northern Lights"). This was the best BFL ever!! Seriously, the entire time I was spinning it, I couldn't get over how soft and puffy it was - no compacting or felting whatsoever. Cris is a fiber genius! From 4 ounces of fiber, I ended up with 244 yards of roughly DK-weight chain-plied yarn. I can't wait to see how this stripes when I knit it up.
|Superwash BFL from Into the Whirled - "Northern Lights"|
Next, I spun a sport-weight, low-twist singles from the October club selection from Spunky Eclectic. The fiber blend is tan BFL and silk (yum!), and the warm, luscious colorway is called "Pheasant". Amy's fiber is always top-notch and such a joy to spin!
|Tan BFL/Silk from Spunky Eclectic - "Pheasant"|
Next up was Spunky Eclectic's September club selection, some wonderfully soft and muted superwash Merino in the colorway "Summer's End". I spun a 2-ply, sport-weight yarn that measured in at 280 yards. I don't usually enjoy spinning 100% Merino, but this fiber was such a pleasure!
|Superwash Merino from Spunky Eclectic - "Summer's End"|
Continuing on the Spunky Eclectic theme (yep, I'm a little obsessed right now), I moved on to the November club selection, Wensleydale top in the colorway "Not So Seaworthy". My intention right from the start was to spin a lightweight, low-twist singles, though it did take a bit of tinkering to find the perfect level of twist to make the yarn hold together, but not end up 'wiry'. My efforts paid off, though, because I really love this finished yarn! It's so silky and lustrous. The final yarn measures in at 287 yards, and is roughly a heavy fingering weight.
|Wensleydale from Spunky Eclectic - "Not So Seaworthy"|
Next, I chose some very special fiber that's been lingering in my stash for awhile now. A couple months ago, I was overjoyed to learn that I won a giveaway hosted by Ursa of The Pagan Knitter Podcast, which is one of my favorite knitting podcasts ever. I was offered the choice of two different fibers: some lovely handpainted Merino top, or a handcarded batt from the fabled Sanguine Gryphon, made long before the dyers split into two companies. Of course I chose the batt! :) It was a lovely mix of Merino and silk, somewhat chunky, in the most beautiful dark jewel tones. I spun it woolen with a longdraw to emphasize the gorgeous texture, and ended up with 110 yards of 2-ply, bulky-weight yarn. I love, love love how it turned out!
|Merino/Silk from The Sanguine Gryphon- "Robert of Locksley"|
Right now, I'm spinning up some super-gorgeous superwash Merino from Into the Whirled, in the "Bodhi" colorway. Here's how it looked before spinning...
|Superwash Merino from Into the Whirled - "Bodhi"|
... and here's how it's turning out so far!
|Ahh... lofty Merino goodness!|
In the next few days, I have two exciting posts planned: the first one will be a review of a fabulous new spinning tool I recently procured (super-fabulous, if I do say so!), and the second will be the unveiling - at last, after many, many months of procrastinating - of my fleece-washing tutorial. Huge thanks to Zoey from Knit Secret for sending me a Ravelry PM about fleece-washing and giving me the nudge I needed to buckle down and finish it up! :)
And because it's been way, way too long without some kitty love, here's a photo of Vincent posing for the camera!
|Does he seem vain? Because he totally is. ;)|