Thursday, 24 September 2015

Accidental stash enhancement

That is totally a thing, you can be planning to not obtain any more yarn/fibre and then do so entirely by accident :). We will get to how in a bit.

On the needles:
The touch the sky cardigan continues with its oh so long rows (I will remember to take a photo of this for next week). It is very pretty but I just want it done now. Unfortunately by the time it is done it will be winter and too cold to wear a 4ply weight, very lacey, open front cardigan. This may be affecting my motivation.

I have been digging through my WIPs and pulled some thrummed mittens out of long term hibernation. The first was finished about three years ago, then I stalled, I think I ran out of fibre for thrumming, which is a rubbish excuse because I now have plenty of fibre to choose from. 

Hopefully my gauge will still be close enough that I can make the second mitten and call it a pair. These are to finish this week.

I also have a couple of blankets in my WIP pile, both sock yarn blankets, they are long term hibernators that get the occasional bit of attention, I suspect they will be WIPs for a long time to come.

This lovely yarn is also on the needles, I am working on a pattern to go with it, so just yarn pictures for today.

Off the needles/designer business:
The mittens I have been working on are done, the ends have just been sewn in and they are currently soaking in the sink. Colourwork is one of the things I always block, it really needs it.
Writing up the pattern is on my to do list for this week, so it will hopefully be making an appearance soon.
(I found the before photo, so here it is)

In a spin: 
The same blue/grey fine single is sat on my wheel, I haven't spun at all this week. Would like to get that one finished as I have some new fibre I want to get going on.

Stashy goodness:
First up, I had a major stash tidy. It was not behaving itself, with balls and skeins snuck in odd bags and generally looking messy. I pulled it all out of the two tubs where it is meant to live, sorted a few bits that are for sale and stowed the rest away in a much neater fashion. I have plans to work through some of it asap. It is also now sorted vaguely by weight, which should make hunting for specific yarn much easier. 

Now, on to the accidental purchasing. I went on a yarn shop crawl with a couple of friends from my knit group. We made it round five of the local shops (Threads in Keyworth, Knit Nottingham, Yarn loft in Nottingham, Yarn in Beeston and Knittiquip at Breedon on the HIll). Much fun and giggles was had by all, we also had amazing paninis at the deli next to Knit Nottingham.

Italian chicken and mozzarella and salami with halloumi. So good! My advice- go there! And then go next door and buy yarn from the lovely Eleanor.
Also cake from Beth's Kitchen at Breedon on the Hill, also delicious (it may have been a food tour as much as a yarn tour).

I bought a couple of skeins of alpaca as I want to try a pattern with pure alpaca. I want to see if it will hold enough shape to work as a hat or if the drape will be too much and lead to sagginess.

The brown was a bargain bin purchase to trial some aran weight patterns.

The real accidental purchasing came when we took a trip to Doncaster to collect some car parts. We ended up coming away without the bits we went for and I had a sudden flash of inspiration that Wingham wool work is "north" (ok, so my geography leaves something to be desired). On the off chance I Googled it, expecting it to be many miles away, and found it was less than seven miles down the road- total win!

A short detour later and I found myself there, they very kindly let me in, even though I had managed to hit lunchtime. This place is a wonderland of fibre goodness!

There are a few of different buildings, the first has books, exotic fibres, bobbins, yarns and various miscellaneous bits. Up next is the coloured merino shed (not easy to photograph):

over 125 different colours of dyed merino that you can choose from. You take a bag and go at it pick and mix style, choosing as much, or as little of each. It is weighed up for price as they are all charged at the same rate.

Shed three has different breeds in natural colours. Not pick and mix this time, but you can choose the amount you want of each and bag it.

Shed four is the rainbow room:

Multicolour blends of merino. The ones on the right contain silk. There are also giant carded batts and other goodies in here.

I didn't make it up to shed four, which contains equipment and the workshop room as I was trying to keep my visit short.

Definitely going back, next time I will drag some fellow spinners along and go for the day!

And finally, my purchases:

I was fairly restrained :)

The turquoise blend at the top is a merino and silk rainbow, I really want to get this on my wheel! Got to finish the blue/grey first though.
The small bag of white is natural Corriedale. I wanted some cheap feltable wool to make backings for felted pictures rather than using up loads of merino for bits that can't be seen. We will see how the two breeds felt together, it may all go pear shaped if they felt at very different rates.
The two multicoloured bags contain a selection of dyed merino. I had a couple of felted pictures in mind when I was there, so chose colours that are needed. I am going to card some of the colours together to get multi tonal fibre to work with.   
The large bag of white is undyed Bluefaced Leicester for the shop.

Time to block out those mittens and get writing on the pattern.

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