Sunday, December 2, 2012

Newest Obsession Cont...

I finished the coil boil.  Here is the second step of the coil boil, after I core spun the yarn, I coiled it...

...and here is the finished yarn..



Holy cow did this yarn take me FOREVER!  I probably spent 10 hours spinning this and the result is only 10 yards!  Whattt!!  I must admit, it is totally worth it!  It's a pretty sweet yarn.  I'll probably use it to decorate my christmas tree, but then I need to find a permanent spot for it in my house.  This yarn is too cool to sit in a box for 11 months out of the year and only be used to decorate the Christmas tree.   Any ideas on where I can use it in my house? 

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Peter Peter Pumpkin Eater

I finished spinning the batt Peter Peter Pumpkin Eater!  I bought the batt from Spin Culture.  Here is a picture of it from the etsy listing...



...and here it is all spun up!


I spun it into a light fingering weight and have 317 yards!  I think I'm going to knit a shawl with it.  I'm thinking Terribly Simple by Caitlin Ffrench.  Something simple to show off the yarn.  Or I could go with something a little more lacey... Seven and Zero or Holes to Make Lace .  As you can see, I LOVE Caitlin Ffrench's patterns!! 

Friday, November 30, 2012

Newest Obsession

I have a new obsession!!  Corespinning!

Sorry about the pic :(, I'll take better photos when I'm done with the yarn.

This corespun is spun out of a "Blizzard of '77" batt I made.  It includes merino, falkland, bamboo, firestar, faux cashmere and tinsel.

My obsession came from Pluckyfluff's video on how to make a coil boil (I can't link directly to it, but the link is on this Spin Artiste page).  OMG, I'm in L-O-V-E with coil boils!  They are made by first spinning a corespun yarn (Pluckyfluff spun a coreless corespun), then coiling that corespun onto another core yarn.  After that, the last step is to navajo ply.  The resulting yarn is a super thick, dense yarn which is more like a rope!  It is awesome! 

Have you ever spun art yarn?  If so, are you completely addicted?! 

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Small Business Saturday

Today is Small Business Saturday in New York.  It's New York's attempt to make buyers more aware of shopping at small businesses instead of the big box stores during the holiday season.  For Small Business Saturday, I've decided to offer free shipping at my etsy store, just use the code FREESHIP at checkout.  The free shipping code is good now through the end of Cyber Monday!

~Mary

Friday, November 23, 2012

Turkey Trot

Yesterday was Thanksgiving here in the US, and one of our family traditions is to participate in Buffalo's annual Turkey Trot.  The Turkey Trot is the countries oldest 5 mile road race and this year there were 14,000 participants!  Of those participants about half dress up in costumes and run the full 5 miles.  Every year you can count on some hilarious costumes...a gingerbread man, Indiana Jones, a bunch of bananas, Santa, his elf's, and his reindeer, and of course turkey.  Oh, I can't forget the gang of people that dress up as flamingos and push a shopping cart of beer the whole run!  And the guys that carry full size canoes on their backs the whole time!

So this year, my sister (the other blog contributor) and I decided to get a little festive and make a couple of turkey hats.  Of course we decided on the hats the night before the Turkey Trot and had to whip these babies up in record time!  I finally started crocheting the first hat at 7pm on Wednesday night.  We worked together and got BOTH hats done by 11pm!  Without further ado...my hat...


We used the Turkey Hat pattern by Kristin Hankins. 

~Mary

What I've been up to...

It's been a while since I've posted in the blog, but that doesn't mean I haven't been making things!

My most recent project was the Capucine hat. I'm still on the fence with frogging it, though. I tend to knit too tight and the hat came out a bit snug. I'm just not sure if I want to try knitting it on larger needles... I've also been working on Christmas presents, but I can't post much info about that just yet!

Over the past month I participated in two swaps through Ravelry; A Starbucks and Yarn Swap and Vegan for Every Season. The latter has just finished up, so I haven't received my swap package just yet, but I did receive the one from the Starbucks swap!


I'm debating if I want to dye the merino or not. Ideally I'd like it to be a purple and black/gray, but we will have to see. The project bag is really neat, with its' coffee theme!
Once the Vegan swap wraps up I'll post what I got through there. Since I'm a moderator for that group, I'll probably wait until late January to start the next swap. I don't know when the next Starbucks swap will be, but I'll be joining that again!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Shop Update

I've just updated my etsy shop, Lammie Pie!  Here are a few of the new handpainted tops...

Later today I'll be updating the shop with new stitch markers too, Yay!  The new ones are oh so cute...new sheep designs, more paw prints, and some ferret designs too!  In the future, keep an eye out for bunny stitch markers :).  Also, don't forget stitch markers make great stocking stuffers!

~Mary

Monday, November 19, 2012

Fiber Fiesta Weekend

Instead of enjoying the unseasonably warm weather this weekend like I should have been, I was hunkered down in my basement playing with fiber.

Handpainted fiber drying:


I've also been working on a few sweaters.  The first is for my friends 3 month old baby girl. Of course my dog, Sidney, had to get in the picture.



I used the Little Coffee Bean Cardigan pattern.  Instead of changing colors every 2 rows, like the pattern calls for, I made my stripes 4 rows each. 

The second sweater is for my husband...his first hand knit sweater:

 It looks like a huge oversized hat! 
I'm using the raglan sweater pattern from the book Knitting without Tears by Elizabeth Zimmerman.  I obviously have only knit the body and haven't gotten to any of the hard parts, so we will see if it really is indeed knitting without tears!

~Mary

Friday, November 16, 2012

New Add in's

I'm so excited!  Last night a wonderful package of what else but fiber arrived!! Yay!  I ordered some fiber add in's for my batts in my etsy shop...I got some recycled sari silk - black and multi color, firestar, faux cashmere, and some glitz.  I'm especially excited about the recycled sari silk since buying it supports women in India. Isn't that awesome?

I'm planning on dedicating my weekend to fiber arts...dying, washing, carding, and making batts.  So hopefully I should have a shop update by the end of Sunday.  I will also be using some newly washed black shetland in the batts this weekend!  The fleece is from a sheep named Olivia...


On another note, please wish my sweet bunny, Rutherford, luck today.  I dropped him off at the exotic specialist vet this morning for surgery on his eyes and teeth.  :(

~Mary

Monday, November 12, 2012

Loving Fall

Well, I don't have a fiber related post for you today, so I thought I would share cute pics of my ADORABLE pup.  I mean, who doesn't like dog pictures?!





Sunday, November 4, 2012

Shop Update!

My etsy shop, Lammie Pie, has been updated!  Here are some of the new items...





Friday, October 26, 2012

For Travel

Since I ended up absolutely LOVING my first shawl (shawlette), Sunshine Shawl for Sad People, I started another one!  Yay!  This one is called For Travel.  The pattern is by the lovely Caitlin Ffrench.  If you've never heard of her, you HAVE to check out her stuff...It's totally awesome!

So, I feel like I'm doing something wrong with the pattern.  My shawl is triangular...


The one on the pattern page looks more rectangular...

What the heck!!  I've re-read the pattern a gazillion times, and I'm doing it right.  Ugh, I don't know....I'm just going to keep knitting.

Does anyone have any ideas of what I could be doing wrong? 

Thursday, October 25, 2012

We made it to retail!

Lammie Pie Fibers has made it to the world of retail!!  My handspun/hand dyed yarn is now being sold at a shop on Elmwood Ave in Buffalo, Thin Ice.  Next time you are in the area you should check it out!  For those of you not in the Buffalo area, I'll take a picture of my yarn in the store next time I'm there.

Some of the yarn now available at Thin Ice:

Merino Singles

  
Wool from Punta, South America

 ....and last, but not least, pink and grey Falkland yarn (my fav!!)
Sorry about the terrible picture of this skein, unfortunately, this is the only one I took of it :(...  Also, when I went to set the spin, the dye on the black leaked a little, so the colors are more muted now.  I'm planning on re-rinsing the grey fiber again and spinning another skein so that I can keep the nice bright colors!





Friday, October 19, 2012

Friday, October 5, 2012

Craftsy Love

Sorry for the recent hiatus, I'm teaching a college math class this semester for the first time (!) and have been soooo busy!  Anyways, on to what matters most in the world...fiber...

Lately, I've been loving the Craftsy classes!  I got started with my first couple Craftsy classes because they offer a few free mini classes.  The first free class I took was on short rows and taught all the different methods of doing them.

The four ways of doing short rows:

https://mail-attachment.googleusercontent.com/attachment/u/0/?ui=2&ik=5981f85ec9&view=att&th=1381f5049638c529&attid=0.1&disp=inline&safe=1&zw&saduie=AG9B_P-Zhlghk0jvwRjaQh7iPwWN&sadet=1349442694831&sads=_UHKFmDCNLzinXEIUkxuCpR8gv4&sadssc=1
 Pretty awesome huh?!

The second, and my favorite, free class I took was Know Your Wool, taught by Deborah Robson.  It is AWESOME, and the perfect primer for any spinner that wants to work with different wools.  I learned an incredible amount.  I must say, my favorite part is when Deborah goes to the wool market and there are adorable sheep there!!  So cute!  If you're a spinner, or even a knitter, I highly recommend this free course.

The latest Craftsy course I've taken is Spinning Dyed Fiber, by Felicia Lo.  This one is really good as well and does exactly what the title implies, teaches different methods of spinning dyed fibers.  The techniques really help so that you don't end up getting muddy looking yarns.  I currently working on using the techniques I learned to spin this...

https://ny-image0.etsy.com/001/0/5122709/il_570xN.373448848_8pco.jpg
Grimore by Hobbledehoy Fibers on Etsy  (my absolute fav fiber shop!!)

Have you ever taken any Craftsy courses?  If so, which ones?  Did you like them?

Monday, September 10, 2012

Dyed Fiber Binder

In my quest to organize my dye studio, I started dying samples of each of the dye colors I have.  I dyed them in depth of shade one and three, spun them and put them in a binder...

Next, I'll label them and if I'm super motivated I'll dye samples in depth of shade two.

I also started to mix the dyes in 50%/50% concentrations, and will do the same with these samples...labeling and putting them in the binder.  Talk about cute little mini skeins!

 An awesome side effect from all this organization...a huge dyed fiber stash!


Handspun

Check out my newest handspun!  65 yards of goodness...


 Spun from a Hobbledehoy hand painted top Beach Pebbles (below).  I spun it, then navajo plied the singles.  It turned out much thicker than I had originally planned, and as a result I only got 65 yards of yarn...I should have spun the singles much thinner.
 Another handspun skein...

This one was spun from a Hobbledehoy art batt "Lawn Party."

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Organizing the Dye Studio

As I've mentioned in an earlier post, I have been listening to the podcast Spin Doctor.  In this podcast, Sasha Torres talks about fiber related organization which has inspired me to become more organized.  She talked a little about a class she took with Deb Menz (who has a wonderful video Dyeing in the Kitchen) on dyeing fiber and on dye studio organization. Today, I set out to organize my dye studio by making stock solutions of each dye powder I have.

I made a 1:100 concentration of dye solution stored it in a labeled mason jar.  My goal is to mix these dyes in different percentages to get a range of different colors and record all my results in a binder with a sample of the fiber!  Wish me luck...

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Shetland Fleece Part 2

Yay!! It's here!  My two Shetland fleeces finally came in the mail.  Here is the first unrolled in my living room...


 Gorgeous locks!

I test washed about 4 ounces of this today and it is now drying.  The fleece itself is impeccably clean, however, I think I didn't get all the lanolin out.  Eh, glad I did a test wash.

Does anyone know, judging by the last picture if this fleece has guard hairs?  I think it has a few dark grey-black guard hairs, but I'm not sure as I've never seen them in person.  Anyone?

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Fleece Washing Day

Sunday was the perfect weather for fleece washing.  It was sunny, windy, not too hot, and not humid at all!  Perfect fleece drying weather.  I got started washing a fleece that I was totally lucky enough to be given from friends of the family.  I'm not sure what breed the sheep is that this fleece came off.  It has about a 2-3 inch staple, fine crimps, and is very soft.  If anyone has any idea what breed this might be, please let me know!

The dirty fleece:


Since the fleece is decades old, I was nervous about washing it.  I had read that old fleece is difficult to wash since the lanolin and dirt kind of solidifies.  I washed about a pound of it at a time in super hot water with a glug of Dr. Bronners.  Here it is soaking:


I washed it twice, then rinsed twice. Let me tell you, I must have mad skillzzzz!  This puppy came squeaky clean.

Squeaky clean and drying!




Now, the question is, to card or to comb?  Any suggestions?

Monday, August 13, 2012

Shetland Fleece

Check it out!  I ordered two fleeces!!!!  My original plan was to buy one Shetland fleece to spin up for my cuz to be knit into a sweater.  Well, I can't buy an awesomely gorgeous fleece for her, and not for muah!  So, two fleeces it was.  I ordered the fleeces from a farm in Oregon from these sheep.


OMG! How adorable are they?!  I can't wait for them to come in the mail!!!!!!