Archive for the 'spinning' Category

Dreams of a productive laziness

As I’ve mentioned before, I have something of a problem with procrastination, most especially when it comes to my college work. Right now, I’m in the midst of a gut-wrenching mania known as dissertation writing, except that I’m not writing anything. Hence the mania. It’s super stressful, but at least 98 % of the stress is caused by wondering how your stupidity has reached even further dizzying heights, when you thought you really had its number way back. Anyway, I digress. While mulling all this over today I was thinking about how, while I’m really a fundamentally lazy creature at heart (curse you, inherent sloth), I hate sitting still doing nothing. Even if I’m watching tv, etc, I need to be doing something with my hands. I am what you call a born fidgeter, and I come from a long line of them. And since discovering that knitting is the perfect way to keep my hands busy while I’m (not really) doing other things, I manage to be sneakily productive while ostensibly doing nothing. And now all I can think of is how much I wish this could somehow translate into also getting my college work done without my really realising. Because that is the dream.

Today, seeing as I (shockingly!) actually did a semi-reasonable amount of work (ask me anything you want to know about gender and comedy) I naturally rewarded myself by, um, doing nothing for the rest of the day.

And the fruits of my sloth? Well they come in several courses, my friends.

First a little spinning, to whet the appetite:

Sickly sweet
A colourway I like to call “Exploding Sweetshop”

I’ll be honest, I don’t really like this. Loved the roving, but somehow when I spun it up the colours turned into a sickly sweet pastel-y mess. Blech. This is only half of it, the other half awaits me.

Then I blocked the Lace Ribbon Scarf:

Bloc(k) Party
Why won’t you dry faster?

And, gripped by a sudden fever at the realisation that I now only had one or two serious (i.e. not already forsaken and banished to the UFO pile) projects on my needles, I hurriedly cast on for Ene. Ene! Oh how long I’ve waited to knit you. Soon, you shall be mine!

Because apparently, my needles can't be without a scarf
You don’t look like much yet, but we know your potential

Oh and to conclude, I am currently obsessed with the colour of this yarn that I recently ordered. Colinette Jitterbug in Elephant’s Daydream, for the curious.

I love you, yarn cakes!
I’m so pretty that elephants daydream about me.

‘Twill become socks, but which socks? Eh? Eh? I ask you.

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Smoke and mirrors

Ahem. In the spirit of full disclosure I’ll tell you right from the start that this post may be written 85% for the reason that I don’t like to see my blog go too long without fresh material to feed its growling belly, and only 15% because I actually have anything to say/show. In fact, that 15% may be a little on the generous side. But, never one to be put off by the thought that I might contribute more useless nonsense to the already saturated internets, I shall mindlessly persevere!

The last week or so has consisted of me telling myself that tomorrow I will get serious about working on my dissertation, then ignoring this entirely and knitting instead, and making the same empty promises for the next day. Which results in masses of horrible guilt, and yet it doesn’t seem to have an effect. So today, I swear, I’m going to the library. Right after I post here. And maybe knit a little first.

There has also been some spinning of late, which produced this:

Miscalculations

Spinning this has completely convinced me that I need to buy a wheel. Spinning on a spindle is just frustrating because it takes so long. So, much research has been undertaken, but I’m afraid to order one since it would probably mean death to my dissertation and my masters as a whole, so I think it has to wait.

Miscalculations

Anyway, this is 335 yds of laceweight merino, 2-ply, 19 wpi, spun from about half of this roving from Pigeonroof Studios:

At the end of a five mile walk...

There has been plenty of knitting too, but none of it looks very interesting yet, so I’ll save it for another day.

Oh, and guess where I’m going next week? Jealous?

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Sunday = Funday

As a child, I hated Sundays because nothing ever happened and it was such a lazy day. Now I adore them for precisely that reason. I’m not religious in the least, but that whole “day-of-rest” concept has a lot going for it. Today has been just the right sort of Sunday so far. I went out for a delicious brunch (in a yummy vegetarian restaurant that played Prince songs the entire time we were there – odd Sunday morning soundtrack, but fabulous we decided), then wandered around aimlessly for a while with my sister. This involved (as it tends to with peculiar frequency) us testing out different couches in Habitat (with no intention of buying, we just like to check their comfort levels from time to time) and getting angry looks from the shop assistant. C’mon lady, chill out, we don’t look that scruffy and we weren’t about to scribble on the upholstery in pink marker or anything.

After this sojourn I came home and decided to do something I have been putting off for no good reason, and I finished my handspun scarf (the one I should have finished ages ago).

At least it'll keep me from getting lost in a crowd

It’s a complete hotch-potch of colours, but I kind of like it. If nothing else, it should make me easy to spot in a crowd. Which is something I strive for at all times.

At least it'll keep me from getting lost in a crowd

Pattern: No pattern for this one, it’s just a 1×1 rib over 39 stitches with a slipped-stitch edging. It measures about 6″ x 75″
Yarn: My handspun, spun from the Almost Solid Autumn Sampler from Spunky Eclectic, knit up on 4.5mm needles.

I knit this because I ended up with a pile of tiny skeins of handspun that I knew I could never really use for anything else, which is why the colour combination is like it is. Gotta work with what ya got, yo’.

At least it'll keep me from getting lost in a crowd

Of course the best part of all is that I finally got around to finishing it just as the weather starts getting warm and summery and I haven’t even been wearing a coat all week, nevermind a scarf. And that even if it suddenly gets cold again (which lets face it, is entirely likely) the scarf will in no way go with my coat which is purple. Yup. Practical knits, that’s what I’m all about. Maybe I’ll take to wearing scarves around the house, just ’cause I can. I hear scarves are the new slippers.

At least it'll keep me from getting lost in a crowd

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Yesssss!

Handspun stash

All done. Now the knitting can start.

Handspun stash
Look at them there, just like little marching ants. Bless…

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The home stretch.

Only one and a half ounces left to spin up and then the knitting can begin! So I’m thinking up scarf ideas now, and I reckon seeing as it’s going to be a not-so-streamlined mix of different colours, something simple is best for the design, and at the moment I’m leaning towards straight garter stitch all the way. Easy, quick, doesn’t interfere with my simultaneous tv-watching (crucial), and guaranteed to lead to a warm neck in no time. Can’t beat it. I could even knit it and study at the same time, thereby alleviating the guilt that plagues me (which I’m doing my level best to ignore) when I all too frequently pick up the needles instead of reading up on whatever film theory is on the cards this week.

IMG_0595

These colours together just make me happy.

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Orange Super-Split!

I think I do not overstate things when I describe myself as a confirmed, life-long, incurable, ice-cream addict. Hell, I don’t even want to be cured. Love the stuff. Love it. The introduction of Ben & Jerry’s to Ireland several years ago really helped cement the devotion, but back in the day my ice-creams of choice were simpler. There was a lot of Loop the Loop indulgence, and we were always quite a Feast family too (the mint and chocolate varieties equally – can’t lose). But when I started spinning up the orange roving from my Spunky Eclectic sampler, I couldn’t help but think of the oh-so-refreshing Super Split. The mixture of orange and white is just so… zingy! Zesty! Citrus! So now every time I look at it I am reminded of summer trips to the corner shop, clutching my 25p in my palm, weighing up which cooling tasty treat I’d leave with that day.

Orange handspun

Like the last one, this is spun from Spunky Eclectic Merino – Almost Solid Autumn Sampler, spun up to 13 wpi, 56 yds of 2-ply sport weight.

Orange handspun

I have a couple of the other colours spun up too, so only another four or so to go. I see scarves in the near future! Well scarf, singular. Hooray!

Orange handspun

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The race against winter.

“The heat is on…On the street…” These are exactly the blood-pumping song lyrics I am humming to myself as I gear up, Rocky-style, to show winter up to be the slovenly creature it is and glide gracefully past it to the finish line. The heat, however, is precisely what I am trying to avoid. What??, you might exclaim, we’re sick of winter. Give us sunshine and warmer days that allow us to wear nicer and less-bulky outfits. Yes, my friends, ordinarily I would be angrily chorusing such cries along with you. But this time I have a very particular reason for wanting winter to dawdle in its departure.

On Friday night when I was coming home from a friend’s house, I left my scarf in the taxi. Leaving me scarf-less for the still fairly cold days ahead. So, as I am practicing my spinning and have a stash of small rovings in different colours from Spunky Eclectic that are each too little on their own to be used for anything much, but together seem to eagerly cry out “make us into a stripy scarf!”, I decided to do just that. The problem being, I have to spin it all up before I can knit it. And I am very much a beginner in this respect. But should I eventually complete this gargantuan task (hyperbole! I hear you cry, and you’re right, but still…), it damn well better still be cold enough that I actually need to wear the thing. And if it isn’t, Winter? We’re going to have words. Words that may lead to fisticuffs.

I started yesterday, and so far have completed one of the nine colours, which is nice and peachy:

Handspun Merino - Peach

That’s about 56 yds of 2-ply merino at 13 wpi – roughly sport weight, spindle-spun. Now to try and keep all of the batches the same weight! I foresee no calamities whatsoever! Eh… hooray!

Handspun Merino - Peach

Handspun Merino - Peach

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