Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Ye Ol' Knitting Factory

     It's been a busy week of knitting ... although I did manage to slow down a bit over the weekend. There are two more items still on the needles, but not for long as they'll be done this evening. I'll need to deliver them to and pick up more bulky wool to do a few more. The idea is to have some stock ready for their show on Feb. 12th in Wolfville. The hats are fairly basic and knit from bulky yarn. The headbands are double knits as there's a rib lining on the inside, making them very thick and warm. They're truly a luxury item. All these yarns are also available through the above link. Just contact Caroline for prices and availability. 

     The spinning was put on hold this past week, but I'm yearning to get back to it. I'm nearly done spinning the singles for a two ply sock yarn in black alpaca and sari silk bits. It has a very interesting look so far and it isn't even plied yet. The socks are going to a friend in the city who collects antiques. He's swapping me a skein winder for them. I really need to get that winder too, as any more snarls in the lace weight alpaca yarn because the back of a chair was employed, is going to drive me over the edge. My husband flatly refuses to hold the skein while I wind the balls from it. 

     I guess that's about it from Ye Ol' Knitting Factory for now. Stay tuned though ... more will follow soon. 

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

A New and Better Year

     This has been truly the worst and most stressful holiday in history for us. I guess that happens sometimes. Our car died, never to be driven again, forcing us to scramble for funds to get a new one and trying to do it with all the storm and holiday closures of business and gov't offices. Then there was our New Year's party ... a very small function for two couples which was crashed by a bunch of Yahoos who ate and drank everything in site and finally had to be thrown out on their butts, and all topped off with the sad loss of a dear friend, who passed very suddenly. It hasn't been fun and I'm hoping for a much better year. 


    I haven't written anything here in a long time, mostly because I've been knitting and spinning wool, which tends to be very boring to the spectator. There's only so much you can write about yarn and socks. All my closest friends got socks for Christmas. The last pair is nearly done and they are for ME! I finally get a pair for myself. I have lots and lots of wool here that still needs to be carded and spun into fine yarn, and it's safe to say I'll be busy with that all winter. 

   As you can tell from the pictures, I've found an alpaca farm nearby. My husband and I have taken on the project of installing a man door in the alpaca barn. We were out there working all day yesterday and the door is in now, and just needs to be trimmed out. My husband has to move some wires for them too, then that project will be finished. 

     Alpaca wool is much finer and warmer than sheep wool. It's cloud soft and very luxurious. There is also the added bonus that alpacas don't produce lanolin, so there's no grease to deal with and this actually makes it great for folks who are allergic to wool. It takes dye very well, almost too well at times but I seem to prefer the natural colors. They come in 17 registered colors but there are a few more shades as well. Lots of colors to choose from. I like to ply a light and a dark together as shown in these booties I made for a friend who is going to be a new father very soon. 

    I have two books here I have to read cover to cover ... one on wet felting and one on spinning. I've very determined to get that done this month so I can get back to some felting and do things the correct way, knowing it will work instead of muddling through and hoping it will work. I got some nice silk and glitzy threads, curly locks, etc to add to my projects. I'm very well stocked in fact, so it should be a productive winter. I shall try to blog more often, but given the turmoil over the holidays, my heart just wasn't into it. Today is devoted to housework, then we're back at the alpaca farm tomorrow to finish up (and take more pictures of the cuties!) 

    Happy New Year to all my loyal followers.