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One Down and One To Go!

Yesterday I finished a sock and I'm a little excited about this because it's been on my needles since April! I really like the Serenity Sock yarn that I picked up for Joann's ages ago. It knits up well and I'm looking forward to seeing how it wears.  The color I'm using is called Surf and is a self-striping yarn.  The lace design really works well with the striping.

The pattern I am using is Los Monos Locos , a toe up sock pattern that I have slightly modified.  

Here's my modifications:

Cast On:

I used the Turkish cast on, casted on 12 stitches and increased to 34 stitches for each needle. 


For the lace stitch pattern, it was followed exactly except I made a k1 at the beginning and at the end of the stitch pattern (k1, work lace pattern, k1).   I worked 8 repeats of the pattern then started the gusset stitch increase.

The Gusset:
Round 1: On needle 1, continue to work in pattern as before. On needle 2, k1, kf&b, K until 2 stitches remain, kf&b, K1
Round 2: On needle 1, continue to work in pattern. On needle 2, knit all stitches.
Continue to work rounds 1 and 2 until there are 58 stitches on needle 2
Turning the Heel -- Working back and forth ONLY on needle 2, turned the heel as follows: 
Row 1 (RS): k32, SSK, K1, turn 
Row 2 (WS): Slip 1, P7, P2tog, P1, turn 
Row 3: Slip 1, K8, SSK, K1, turn 
Row 4: Slip 1, P9, P2tog, P1, turn 
Row 5: Slip 1, K10, SSK, K1, turn 
Row 6: Slip 1, P11, P2tog, P1, turn
Continued in this manner until all the stitches are worked and you again have 34 stitches on needle 2.
The Leg 
I worked the lace design for the front and a twisted rib pattern for the back ( k2 in back, purl 2, k2 in back).

I really like how it turned out and have casted on the mate today.  Hopefully the second sock won't take as long as the first sock did.

Until next time ~ happy knitting!

Sunday Happenings .... Spinning and Knitting of Course!

Today I'm sharing my video that I posted on my Instagram IGTV channel. I'm really enjoying this years Tour de Fleece.  It's been very inspirational to see all the spinning across the world and the gorgeous handspun that is being created.

As mentioned in my video,  I'm working on my Abundant Earth Fiber in Sugar Snap.  I'm very hopeful that I will finish spinning this 50 grams of fiber today, and maybe even chain ply late this afternoon.  I know many of you spinners are wondering why I don't let my bobbins rest over night, but I've found that I don't always have to do that unless I can see there's way to much "energy" in the twist.

Mentioned in the video:

Regarding knitting ......

I frogged my Beekeeper Cardigan!!!   I love this pattern and it was very well written but I simple did not like the way my increases were looking.  To me they were way to sloppy and had too many holes.  Since I'm a perfectionist, I could't take the look and didn't really think blocking it would help after it was finished. So, off to the frog pond it went but since I love the yarn, and the color of the yarn, I've decided to use it for Irish Coffee by Thea Colman.

Photo Courtesy of Thea Colman

From the Designer's Ravelry Page:  Irish Coffee is a top down tunic, knit in a gorgeous tweed. The details themselves are simple and flattering, but unusual enough that the sweater garners attention wherever I wear it!A long line of cables brings the eye to the center of the waist, while short sleeves and ribbing at the top balance out the long length. The elements of the sweater are simple and classic and result in a tunic versatile enough to wear with almost anything.
The design is worked top down, so adjusting the length, width, or sleeves for your personal taste is easy. Additional instructions in the pattern give advice on all sorts of modifications - and you can look at all the FOs on Ravelry to see the different versions, yarn choices and and options out there - it’s surprisingly flattering on everyone!

I love Thea's designs and have made several things from her collection of the last few years.  I think Irish Coffee will be perfect for my Ella Rae!

I'm also finishing up a sock that I started back in April.  This is a modified version of the Los Monos Locos (toe up) sock.  I'm making this pair as shorties, so I will be cast off today and casting on the mate!

So lots of spinning and knitting going on today.  

What's on your wheel, hook, needles or loom ?

Until next time ~ Tina

Finished Handspun...It’s the best !

I’m so excited to have finished my Abundant Earth Fiber in Citrine today!  I ended up with a total of 70 yards in 3-ply, heavy fingering weight, which is a few yards shy of what I needed.  All in all, not bad for 50 grams of fiber (1.75 oz).

I love the color and texture, and as mentioned earlier today of my Instagram IGTV video, it reminds me quite a lot of Jamieson's Shetland Wool (in the color Yellow Ochre).

Next up for my intentional spinning project during Tour de Fleece in Abundant Earth Fiber in the color Sugar Snap.  There's just a hint of yellow in the color of this fiber, which I think will complete the other colors for my project quite well.

What are you currently spinning today ?

Intentional Spinning

Like many spinners, I typically spin for the pure enjoyment of watching my wheel go around, turning beautiful fiber into yarn.  There's something about this process that is very soothing and mediative.  Just like knitting, I truly find spinning to be very therapeutic.  It allows me to be centered and sort out my thoughts of the day.

During Tour De Fleece, spinners are spinning as fast as they can to create loads of finished yarn.  But there's also other reasons to spin.  There are times we spin for a project in mind,  which I like to call intentional spinning.  During this years Tour De Fleece, that is exactly what I'm doing.

Now that I have caught up on my breed study spinning,  I'm spinning for a project in mind. A very simple garter stitch cowl, with a bit of color called the Hap Cowl by Ella Gordon.  I love the simplicity of this design and it was just echoing "handspun" when I first saw it.

Courtesy of Ella Gordon
From the designer's Ravelry page:  A circular cowl inspired by the elements of traditional Shetland Haps, worked flat and then seamed this cowl uses garter stitch, simple lace and colour changes for a surprisingly easy but effective looking knit. My two colourways are inspired by nature in Shetland: Colourway 1 reminds me of the sea, sand and cliff’s whereas Colourway two is inspired by the heather, peat banks and moss you can see all over Shetland.

The fiber I'm currently spinning, Signature Roving by Abundant Earth Fiber,  reminds me of Shetland.  It's rustic in nature, and spins up beautifully.  My intent is to spin Skylight (below left) as the main color and then spin up Citrine (top right), Sugar Snap (2nd down on the right), Forage (3rd down on the right) and then Blood Orange (bottom right).

I'm currently finishing up Citrine and hope to have it chained plained by tomorrow.  Once it's off my wheel, I will start spinning Sugar Snap.

I may not get all my colors spun up during this years Tour De Fleece, but I'm hopefully to get at least three colors finished.

Why do  you spin ?
Until next time, happy spinning!

It's Finished!!! and a Tour De Fleece Update

I'm so happy with my finished my 2914 Cardigan!!!  I absolutely love it and it fits wonderfully.  I opted to wet block it and line up the neckline, which matches perfectly across.

The pattern called for 10 skeins of Mushishi Big for a size XL but I only used 7 full skeins.  The pattern is very easy to follow and well written.  Over all, a quick knit!

This morning I tried it on and took a few photos to share.  This will be perfect for the fall!

I also did a little spinning yesterday for Day 4 / Stage 4 of Tour de Fleece.  I'm currently spinning a lovely fiber from Abundant Earth Fiber in the color Citrine. This is a really beautiful fiber to spin and very rustic.   I can't wait to see how it turns out when plied!

Until next time, happy spinning and knitting!

Tour de Fleece - Day 3/Stage 3

So I'm all caught up with the spring breed study from The1764Shepherdess and have started with the summer study, which consists of Corridale (July), Blue Face Leicester (August) and Wensleydale (September).

I prepped my 1 oz of Corridale and finished spinning it up in 30 minutes.  

About the breed:

Corriedale sheep are a dual purpose breed, meaning they are used both in the production of wool and meat. The Corriedale is the oldest of all the crossbred breeds, a Merino-Lincoln cross developed almost simultaneously in Australia and New Zealand and first brought to the United States in 1914. The Corriedale is internationally farmed, in Australia, New Zealand, the United States of America, Southern Brazil, Uruguay and Patagonia. Corriedales are one of the most popular sheep breeds in Uruguay. On the Falkland IslandsPolwarth and Corriedale form the main sheep breeds.

I'm quite pleased with my results.... 25 yards chained plied and light worsted weight! 

Until next time - Happy Spinning!

Tour de Fleece ~ Day 2/Stage 2 Update

This weekend we actually stayed home as it was too hot to really get out and to much.  I started spinning my Whiteface Woodland.  At first I really found this fiber to be very "scratchy" and not soft at all.  However, like my Gotland, the more I spun, the more it became soft.

Here's a reminder of what this breed is all about....

The Whitefaced Woodland is a sheep breed from the Woodlands of Hope an area in the South Pennines in England. It is a combination of two breeds, the Woodland and the Penistone sheep after the Yorkshire town where sheep sales have been held since 1699. It is thought to be closely related to the Swaledale and the LonkSubstantial commercial flocks of the Whitefaced Woodland are kept in its region of origin, but it is listed as a vulnerable breed by the Rare Breeds Survival Trust, since there are fewer than 900 registered breeding females in Great Britain.

2 oz of Whiteface Woodland
I started spinning this wool on Saturday, the beginning of Tour de Fleece, and finished it up yesterday afternoon.I spun worsted (short draw method) and chained plied my finished spinning.  I ended up with 64 yards of heavy fingering weight to sport weight.  I'm quite pleased with this result as my goal was at least 50 yards!

This finished skein is squishy looking but not quite as soft as the Polwarth I finished earlier.  I did find the longer staple length (typically 3" to 8") easier to draft and spin.  After reading more about this breed in the Fleece & Fiber Sourcebook,  it appears that this finished fiber is excellent for rugs, bags, ropes and very day garments.   By the way, if you are a spinner and do not own this book, it's a must for your library!!!

From the publisher of Fleece & Fiber Sourcebook:  This one-of-a-kind encyclopedia shines a spotlight on more than 200 animals and their wondrous fleece. Profiling a worldwide array of fiber-producers that includes northern Africa’s dromedary camel, the Navajo churro, and the Tasmanian merino, Carol Ekarius and Deborah Robson include photographs of each animal’s fleece at every stage of the handcrafting process, from raw to cleaned, spun, and woven. The Fleece & Fiber Sourcebook is an artist’s handbook, travel guide, and spinning enthusiast’s ultimate reference source all in one.

So are you joining in the spinning fun for Tour de Fleece?
Until next time ~ happy spinning