Friday, July 28, 2017

Camp Loopy August: Wonder Woman Wrap

I cannot wait for August! As I was considering what to make for the final Camp Loopy project, I asked my husband's opinion. He saw my queue and asked me why I wasn't obviously making the Wonder Woman Wrap. That settled it!

Sparkly! Now I just have to finish the current stage of Tour de Sock and July's Camp Loopy project - it's close, but I was trying to finish the socks first. Then I lost my sock mojo somewhere around the heel of the first one. Quick, must finish ALL THE THINGS!

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Tour de Sock 2017: Stage 2, More Mistakes

I started off Stage 2 with some quick errors! First, I switched the MC and CC in the first chart.

Then, once I'd ripped back the four offending rows and corrected them, I made the very fiddly Latvian braid facing the wrong direction at the end of the leg colorwork section:

I will get through these socks! Hopefully without any more mistakes!

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Tour de Sock 2017: Stage 1 Mistake

Stage One of Tour de Sock did not go off without a hitch. I made a big enough mistake that I had to drop back and fix it, as I could not live with it and knew I would not fix it later! Can you see the problem? I dropped a YO and miscounted, then fixed my count before the line of YOs and still had a miscount in that section. Of course, I didn't figure this out until I was inches beyond that point, when I finally realized the count was wrong in the next fin section.

 I dropped down to fix the problem. I dropped down a large number of rows.

I knitted my way back up again, fixing the pattern and hoping the extra stitch would end up blocking out.

Going back up made the purl rows easier, I was able to knit those back and forth instead of purling across!

Good as new, though leaving the error would have given me a few extra places in the leaderboard. Probably not enough to win more points though, so I am glad I fixed it when I did!

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Tour de Sock 2017: Stage 1

While the Steotchalong and Tour de Fleece (and Stash Dash) were going on, the Tour de Sock started as well! The second sock comes out today and I managed to finish in the 120th position on the first one thanks in part to a vacation where I carefully planned the driving split to give me knitting time once the pattern was released.

I never got good pictures of the finished sock for the competition, and then I modified them for daily wear. I would not have worn them with the fins on top, the fins just didn't stay up or add anything to the sock when worn, in my opinion. Otherwise, I absolutely love this yarn and the marriage of yarn and pattern. I can only hope to get one or two more such perfect pairings over the next five pairs of competition socks!

Pattern: Fins (Ravelry mine)
Yarn: Cauldron's Path Yarns in Inspired Feather
Needles: US1.5/2.5mm
Timeframe: July 15 - 17 for competition, finished mods on July 21, 2017
Mods: Added extra plain rows to deepen the heel, extra ribbing and elongated BO instead of fins.
Problems: None with the pattern, but my counting was off once or twice!

Monday, July 24, 2017

Steotchalong 2017: Clue #3

Still have no idea. Are those letters? Is it tilted? I'm pretty sure the flowers are in fact flowers, beyond that, I got nothing!

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Tour de Fleece: Day 21

Today's the last day! I plied and began washing the yarns.

I did not ply everything as I wanted to be sure the yaks had time to rest, and I have no idea what I'm going to do with the steel. Ply? Leave it be? Let it sit on the bobbin until I have better skills and take another look?

When it's all dry and done, I'll figure out all of the yarn specs that might help with figuring out what I want to do with it.

I'm thinking of making woven mug rugs with the handspun samples and a pair of ankle socks with the full skein. It's around 200 yards, so not enough for a full pair of socks but still enough. I did spin it with an opposing ply specifically for socks, so socks it will be!

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Tour de Fleece: Day 20

I spun my last sample today! I wanted to also begin plying the first few samples, but this tiny one took far, far too much effort to get through that I was just done with the wheel after I got through it. I am not particularly happy with it and am not sure what I want to do with it.

It's a difficult spin in large part because it is stainless steel. Yep, stainless steel yarn! Kinda cool, but maybe not something for my current skill level.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Tour de Fleece: Day 19

Today I spun both of the yak-based samples I had. One, the brown, was small and had enough nepps to bug me. I know yak is a soft fiber so some isn't surprising, but this was more than I would have anticipated.

The grey was absolutely lovely, with a few different shades of grey giving it amazing depth as I spun. it also spun very easily, a very nice fiber to work with!

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Tour de Fleece: Day 18

Today I spun the best fiber ever! I am so in love, I want to get enough for a sweater's worth of singles! The color, the feel, everything was just perfect!

Of course, this means that the fiber was made by a small, local fiber company and they've been sold out for about a year. Siiiigh.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Tour de Fleece: Day 17

Today, I spun two samples from the Phat Fiber box I purchased last year. I spun them both on the same bobbin as one was very small and I wanted to spin some more but not use up all of my bobbins on ten and twelve yard samples!

I didn't particularly love either of these. We'll see how I feel when they're plied.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Tour de Fleece: Day 16

I learned how to make a plying bracelet today! I don't have any pictures of that. I do have a picture of the last of the two-ply on the bobbin, finishing off the excellent Fibernymph Dyeworks BFL in Mad Dancing Fairies.

This was a very lovely fiber to work with and the colors blended together nicely. It reminded me strongly of girls' rooms in the mid-to-late '90s, when I was growing up. Now I need to wash and finish it, then see what kind of socks I can make with it!

Monday, July 17, 2017

Steotchalong 2017: Clue #2

I started out the second clue with an error.

That red bit is supposed to be above the center motif, not the side snowflake. Not a huge error and I did catch it pretty quickly.

What will it be? Are we celebrating the four seasons with a sampler? Canada's 150th? Something else entirely because the snowflakes are not snowflakes and the side bits aren't actually maple leaves? I don't know yet!

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Tour de Fleece: Day 15

So my grand plan for the challenge day, day 15, was to go through all the samples I have, giving me a pile of singles to ply for the rest of the Tour and finishing all of the fiber I acquired in 2016 (the current braid is the only 2017 fiber purchase). This would have been a good plan if I both owned more bobbins than I do (though as the samples are so small, doubling up or more on one bobbin probably would be fine) and also had fully finished the singles I was working on. The opposing ply was all used up but I didn't use up all the singles the day before. I began to two-ply the remaining singles. I figured it would be a quick process and I'd be able to move on to the samples, even if I couldn't spin all seven singles.

After the next bobbin ran out, I tried to chain-ply the rest of the final bobbin. It was a hot mess. The wheel for some reason is not wanting to take up the yarn at that ratio. This meant that my chain-ply was closer to ramen than yarn and everything was just a problem. I pulled it all out. Next time, I'll learn how to make a plying bracelet. Maybe I'll get through some of those samples, but if not, at least this braid will be done, and that was my only real goal.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Tour de Fleece: Day 14

Finished the three ply! I of course still need to wash it and see what the final yarn is like, but it is off the wheel!

Friday, July 14, 2017

Tour de Fleece: Day 13

Dividing wasn't as bad as I thought it might be. It was time consuming though.

I spun just enough to get everything all tensioned and joined and should finish plying tomorrow. I will probably have a two-ply mini skein when the opposing ply runs out. I don't think it was that much thicker than the rest, but as the other two are relaxing into the ply, that one is continuing to coil up which probably accounts for the difference in length I'm seeing.

For the rest of the Tour, my goals are to finish plying tomorrow, spin all of the samples I have left from the Phat Fiber box I got last year on the Challenge Day, then ply them all. I believe I have six samples left, so spinning them all leaves one per day to ply to finish out the Tour.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Tour de Fleece: Day 12

I spun this far:

And then this happened:

I was expecting it due to my uneven division of the braid, but I wasn't really looking forward to this part. I probably should have fixed the uneven divide earlier - joining while spinning would have been much easier than dividing the energetic single that's on the bobbin! I think I will wind the end connected to the wheel onto a new bobbin until they're about even in weight (assuming the bobbins are approximately the same weight and the singles are even enough that approximately the same weight gives me approximately the same yardage...), then cut the single and wind the first bit back onto another bobbin so I can leave it attached to the wheel, then join the cut end on the original bobbin and keep plying. Luckily I have six bobbins so the game of musical bobbins isn't a problem!

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Tour de Fleece: Day 11

Still plying. I'm liking this better today than yesterday. One or two more days and I'll have yarn!

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Tour de Fleece: Day 10

First day of plying!

This one took some effort. First off, it wouldn't take up the yarn onto the bobbin. Then when I tightened the band enough that it did, the whorl spun off. I finally got it just right, and realized that it still wasn't giving me what I wanted and I needed to move to a larger whorl/lower ratio. That did the trick! Then I had issues getting the yarn to the wheel. I had to turn the bobbin with the opposing ply (spun Z, counterclockwise like plying while the other two were spun S, clockwise) around so the three bobbins were spinning in the same direction on the lazy kate. I had to tighten up the kate's tension. I had to rearrange how I was holding the plies. Eventually, I got a nice rhythm going and managed to keep it all smooth. I'm still not sure that the plying is giving me exactly what I want consistently, and with the opposing ply I'm not sure what exactly it should be doing. There will be yarn, and soon enough I'll find out if it is in fact the sock yarn I set out to make!

Monday, July 10, 2017

Steotch-Along 2017: Clue #1

It's that time of year again! Even though I didn't actually finish last year's (yet), I'm jumping in again and keeping up this time! Probably. Clue #2 came out today and I've had Clue #1 done for a week (but waited to post until the TdF rest day).

So simple, so sparse, what will it be?

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Tour de Fleece: Day 9

On Tour de France challenge days, Tour de Fleece also suggests trying to challenge yourself. These are followed by rest days so you get a bit of a break if you challenged yourself a little too hard. For today's challenge day, I decided to go for distance with the goal of spinning the opposing ply, the final third of the braid I've been working on.


It also turned out to be very different from the other two bobbins, especially when it was only partway complete. Love it!

Saturday, July 8, 2017

Tour de Fleece: Day 8

Last day on bobbin #2! It's much more blue than the first bobbin. I couldn't get a picture with both in focus and showing off the color differences, so I went with the one that showed the colors the best.

One more bobbin to go, then plying. I'm very interested to see what the plied yarn looks like, even more interested to see whether the yarn ends up being in the fingering weight range, and I can't wait to see what the opposing ply does!

Friday, July 7, 2017

Tour de Fleece: Day 7

I took the green nail polish in a slightly different direction. It no longer matches nearly as well, but there is one point when the fiber transitions between green and blue where it is about the same.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Tour de Fleece: Day 6

This one's showing off the variety of colors in the skein better than prior bobbins did.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Tour de Fleece: Day 5

I've been enjoying watching the colors fade from one to the other.

It's especially fun when it matches my nailpolish, an accidental but very enjoyable coincidence!

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Tour de Fleece: Day 4

Bobbin #1, finished and on the Lazy Kate!

Monday, July 3, 2017

Tour de Fleece: Day 3

This bobbin's nearly full, or at least, all the fiber that's going on it is nearly gone.

One more day should do it, then on to the next bobbin, of the same fiber, spun the same way. Yay?

Sunday, July 2, 2017

Tour de Fleece: Day 2

A bit further on the same bobbin, barely noticeable but I spent a few minutes on it!

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Tour de Fleece: Day 1

It's the Tour de France, which means spinners (of yarn) are participating in the Tour de Fleece! I haven't touched my wheel in over a year, so I'm going to try to join in.

The first day, I was planning to just get the wheel set up right and the yarn fully attached. Not long, five to fifteen minutes, tops. I'd forgotten how much I enjoyed spinning - nearly an hour later, I realized I needed to get going on dinner and I might get through more than the single braid I set as my goal for the month!


This month was a stressful, hectic, and frustrating one. One in which I learned the true meaning of retail therapy.


Five miles worth of retail therapy.