Archive for March, 2008

Sorry–not keeping up! “Crosspost” from Spindlers

March 22, 2008

Since I don't seem to be keeping up with posting, but I did post
 on Spindlers this week, I thought I would paste it in here. 
How many of you spin without carding or combing from washed 
fleece??  I know at least a couple of you do, because someone 
suggested it to me months ago.  I kinda like doing it myself 
(I got some raw wool for free that seemed worth the time for 
washing and worth spinning, but I don't have a carder or a 
picker or combs and the dog brushes weren't making me happy),
 but it seems that I rarely hear of people doing it that way.  
Anyone know the history behind carding?  I mean, in the old 
old days they weren't bothering, right?  Probably they were 
spindle-spinning with raw wool?  Do you think they washed it 
first??  Just taking some time out washing some more Jacob and 
spinning some up...And considering buying a Shetland fleece 
(but haven't ever spun Shetland...)... 
I made another stab at using the dog slicker brushes (I got 
some that were slightly bigger) and had a much more satisfying 
experience trying to "card" than I did last time.  I made 
little rolags and spun those up and the yarn does seem much 
smoother than what I made from only-picked wool.  I even used
the hole in a cd to make a little diz and pull the rolags 
through to make roving--although that hole is too big.  It was 
just as easy to just stretch out the rolags by hand.  My wool 
(fleece) is from a sheep that maybe is a Dorset and it seems to 
be super greasy.  The bumpy yarn (not carded, just picked) is 
still "sticky", so maybe I need to wash the fleece MORE before 
spinning.  Drag.  It is finally finishing drying! 
 One of the ladies on Spindlers suggested adding alcohol and hotter water for my wash.  Another suggested using 2″ washers with a 1/4″ opening as a diz.
Since I am enabling Betsy, I gave her some of the maybe-Dorset fleece and some dog brushes to take home on her spring break and wash.  She just bought a wheel and apparently has the same crazy-obsessive gene that I have.  DH says I am evil or something.  But he is always encouraging college students to play more ping pong and get interested in fencing, so I don’t see how he is any different!  LOL 
Got the stole finished for Dorcas (sorry, I don’t think I took a photo!) and the prayer shawl finished for LaShawna (a girl at church being confirmed on Easter).  Working on a project for myself–finally decided what to do with the yummy Sylvan Spririt Green Mountain Spinnery yarn that I bought just because I wanted it but had no project in mind.  A wrap for myself.  It is dk weight in Moonshadow and Luminous and I’m doing a rectangular shawl with the easiest open-work stitch I could find in my Stitch•A•Day calendar, “open featherwork”, which is only a five stitch repeat and 2 rows (one row is purling only). 



Spreading the “germ” of knitting and spinning…And, hopefully, reading!

March 12, 2008

So, I started this Knit Nite at the public library and we had TWELVE people at our last meeting.  One of the ladies has only made it to one of the Knit Nites, but she is a regular at storyhour and I got her started knitting.  I got an email from her last week.  She is addicted.  She needed me to teach her to do increases and to change colors.  Hee hee heee. 

The college student (Betsy) that I took to Guild a couple of weeks ago (and let spin on my Babe wheel while we were there) has become completely obsessed and has ordered a Babe wheel of her own.  Hee hee heee.  A couple of other new women at Guild also “took a spin” on my wheel and one of them (Nadine) is also apparently addicted, because she has posted questions about getting a kick spindle. 

We had 22 kids show up (1st through 5th grade) at our Southside Afterschool Book Club yesterday afternoon!!  Whoopeee!!  They were mostly well-behaved and excited to get together about books!  They came up with name choices and voted for “The Page Pulverizers”.  We’re reading the first book of the Spiderwick Chronicles for next week and then we pick one easier and one harder book and split into two rough groups for discussions.  Probably Tomie DePaolo’s “26 Fairmont Avenue” or Beverly Cleary’s “The Mouse & the Motorcycle” for the easier book and “The Great Ghost Hunt” by Eva Ibbottson or “Hatching Magic” by Ann Downer for the harder. 

Today I went to my Prayer Shawl group from church for the first time in months–I read to Evan’s class at 12:15 on Wednesdays, so I don’t usually make it.  But I had to get Dorcas’s stole blessed (still on the needles, but I need to get it to her next Wednesday), so I rushed over after Evan’s library time.  I like this group.  I am almost always the youngest person there, but I love hearing the older ladies’ stories!  Today Portia said I was her favorite geek (I was saying how much I love having the internet available at my fingertips and being able to look up all about the genetics of appaloosa horses yesterday for an item I was researching).  LOL.  And apparently I am a geek, because I took this as a compliment.  🙂 

ORFoB and writing…

March 8, 2008

Christopher in MadCap showWe went to the Ohio River Festival of Books today (sorry I didn’t post about it before, in case YOU wanted to go, too!) and saw Madcap Puppets, even though it was snowing.  A little snow wouldn’t make us miss this puppet show.  They are so cool!  But, while we were there,  we also went to listen to Shutta Crum (who wrote “Fox and Fluff” and “A Family for Old Mill Farm” and “The Bravest of the Brave”) tell stories and also talk ABOUT writing.  And we listened to Debbie Dadey (who co-wrote all of the Bailey School Books) talk about writing.  I came away half wanting to write a book and half being scared to death of the very thought of 300 rejection letters and 200 post-its on a manuscript.  Anyhow, Andrew thought that even if I don’t WRITE a book right now, I ought to make a note of my book thoughts.  So I wrote them all down at home.  Of course, I have ideas about writing about spinning or knitting or weaving (with my new, freakish interest in weaving, too, like I needed to add another hobby!) or cooking or insects… Do you know any children’s books about spinning yarn??  I have read several about knitting… Christopher got picked to help the puppeteers with one of the stories…he is playing an evil little boy who takes advantage of a magic guy in the river and gets his comeuppance.  He seemed to really enjoy it.