30 March 2009

Lambs Are White And Fluffy, Right?

Spring arrived on Friday, and with the temperatures getting up into the 40s and 50s and the snow melting, I actually thought we were done with winter for a while. Then on Sunday, Mother Nature decided to remind us that this is Vermont, and winter isn't over until she says so.

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That's snow. And blue skies. And temperatures above freezing. It was just a 20-minute flurry, but it was enough to improve my day dramatically.

In other news, I have new knitting needles!


One of the new members of that SnB I started is Linda of Grafton Fibers. We got to talking about knitting and spinning and such, and she invited me over to the workshop where she cards batts and her husband Tom turns wood. While I was there, I drooled over their knitting needles, and Tom pulled a set out of the reject pile and put them in my hands. The reason they didn't pass quality control is that a little chip came out of the side of one of the needles, so when it was sanded smooth the needle was no longer the correct diameter in that spot. It's far enough back that it doesn't affect the gauge, so... free needles! They already have a project on them: a grey acrylic-cotton reversible cabled scarf that's coming out beautifully.

Off to get some work done before SnB tonight.

10 March 2009

Camel Cowl


I'm in love with this yarn. Erik rolls his eyes every time I hold it up to show him how pretty it is, but he obligingly pets it and agrees with me. There's a certain amount of pride in it for him, too, since he was the one who picked up the braid of roving and said, "you should get this."

I flipped through some lace patterns and settled on one from Interweave/Harmony's Lace & Eyelets. Unlike the last stitch pattern I tried from that book, this one actually worked without editing, and the gauge looks beautiful when worked on my US#7 ebony circs, so in no time I was off and running with this cowl.


I even got the opportunity to show it off to someone other than Erik! The closest SnBs are half an hour from me, and both in yarn stores that will tempt my budget to a painful degree, so I decided to start one a little closer and in a less tempting environment. We had our first gathering last night! Granted, it was just me and one other person (salut, Alix!), but we're going to see what we can do to attract more folks. We're thinking of calling ourselves the Dam Knitters, since we meet at the Townshend Dam Diner (Monday evenings from 6:30 to 8). If you're in the area, feel free to stop by.

04 March 2009

Chocolate Caramel

Over the weekend I broke out some of the yummiest fiber I had on hand to help cheer myself up. What with me both being unemployed and getting older, the fiber to break me out of this funk needed to be something pretty special: the brown camel-tussah blend I got from Spirit Trail Fiberworks at Rhinebeck. After two and a half days of spinning and plying on Babette, and a quick wash and long dry, I ended up with this.



It's about 400 yards of 3-ply sport or DK weight (which seems to be my standard now), and it is so soft. Soooooo soft. I've decided to name it Chocolate Caramel, because that's what it made me crave while I was spinning it. Now I need to figure out what to do with it. I'm thinking lace armwarmers or a scarf... I'd like it to be lace to show off the halo, but I can't wear it directly on my skin because camels are mammals (say that a few times and see if you're not giggling) and mammal fiber irritates my skin. Any other ideas? (No socks or hats please.)

In knitting news, I'm still plugging away on Erik's scarf (serious black hole action there), I finished the first Trekking sock (which makes three single socks waiting for mates now), and I've been doing a row here and there on the two-at-once clown socks I started a while back. They're getting close to heel-turning time, and I'm a little scared of attempting two short-row heels on one set of DPNs.

Time to go get some non-knitting work done so I can justify plopping myself in front of the DVD player to knit this evening.

03 March 2009

It's In The Bag

Yesterday was my birthday, and Erik got me the one thing I asked for: a 1000 Knitters Project tote bag.


I decided I had to have it when I was browsing through Franklin's shop and noticed the pictures on the back of it (version two, for those of you browsing over there now).


See that? No? Okay, look closer...

(click to embiggen)

It's me! There are a few other famous faces on this one, too, which makes it even cooler.

I've already loaded the tote up with enough knitting and spinning projects to keep me busy for a few hours while I experience for the first time the quaint Vermont tradition called Town Meeting. Sure, we had town meetings in Connecticut, but most folks didn't much care, and I don't think I ever went. In Vermont, though, people care, so I'm off to see what all the fuss is about. And maybe finish the scarf I intended to give Erik for Christmas.