Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Trick or Treat!

Happy Halloween


From Piglet (Isn't Sammy getting so big?!)....And Waldo (I won 5th place at work in the costume contest! There were only 10 people dressed up.)....

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Rhinebeck Report - Picture Heavy Post

After months of anticipation, the New York Sheep and Wool Festival finally arrived (358 days 'til next year - I think). This was my first year attending the festival and I was accompanied by two wonderful people - Mom and Joyce.

It was wonderful. As warned, it was a little overwhelming for me as a first timer. We got there at 9:00 on the dot and scored a pretty close parking spot at the 4H gate. We hit the bathroom first thing, but then went straight for the yarn.

I must admit though, I think the highlight of the trip, for me, was being able to try two spinning wheels: the Ashford Traditional and the Ashford Traveller. Here I am testing the traveler:
Mom snapped this one without my even knowing it.

This was my first purchase -
- a skein of "Out of the Dyepot" by a company called Reflections on Roclans.* The colorway caught my eye immediately, which is no surprise considering that greens and blues are what always seem to jump out at me. What was surprising was that everything else that caught my eye throughout the day wasn't in the blue-green family.

After my first purchase we went through the vendor barns with the look of a deer facing headlights. Everything was gorgeous. It was hard to pick out what was "extra-gorgeous"... if there is such a thing. For non-knitting items, I bought a two beautiful glass buttons which will, inevidently be used for felted clutch bags or purses of some sort. And a gorgeous hand-woven basket
- to store my gorgeous yarns in.

For yarn purchases, I tried to look for things that I probably wouldn't find at my LYS. I think I was successful. I bought 500 yards of rayon silk in a gorgeous autumn colorway...
600 yards of a 100% wool hand-dyed yarn which I plan to make the Hemlock Ring Blanket with.

And being an aspiring spinner, I bought myself some beautiful fiber, which I wil
l probably hold on to until I become better with my technique (and buy a spinning wheel. This is a lot of fiber to spin on a drop spindle!). First, a half pound of a gorgeous colorway:
It is the size of a nice travel pillow. The navy in it really caught my attention, although this picture doesn't show it off terribly well. And my last purchase: 4 oz. of a similar colorway called Melted Crayons: I can't wait to be an expert spinner!

Now, my trip to Rhinebeck would not have been complete without a little bit of
Ravelry wiggled in there. I was able to retrieve my t-shirt that I had ordered from them a month or so ago. I was also given this awesome pin to sport wherever I go. If you are on Ravelry, come friend me!

*The pictures do not do the colors of these yarns justice!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Plan B

I've been working hard to finish the eyelet cardigan in time for this weekend. But I keep hitting dead ends. I finished the fronts and the back of the cardigan, so I'm so close to the finish line, but the sleeves have been giving me a lot of trouble. I'm not really sure why.

So, unfortunately, I've decided to take the pressure off for this weekend and am setting the cardigan aside until after Rhinebeck. Instead, I will try to work on and finish the market bag so that I'll have something neat to carry all of my fun purchases in. At least with this project I will have the hour and a half car ride to work on it as well if I don't finish it by Friday night.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Obsessions

I have quickly realized that my 32 hour work week is getting in the way of my knitting. Is there a way to be paid for one's obsessions?

The process of finishing the eyelet cardigan for this weekend is still in motion. I finished knitting the back of the sweater and casted on/knitted 2.5" on one of the sleeves. It is gonna be close, especially since I keep getting sidetracked with the idea of knitting one of these to carry all my treasures from the wool festival this weekend (mine would be in a pretty blueish-gray).

Speaking of getting sidetracked.... I have discovered a new addiction - spinning. Back in August I received a drop spindle from my wonderful Secret Pal. I took a spindle lesson and am getting the hang of it (and once I finish this sweater, I'll have more time to dedicate to it). Except now I have to feed that obsession, and that obsession is calling for a spinning wheel. I knew I wanted a spinning wheel even before I wanted a spindle, but for reasons like finances and availability, etc. the spindle arrived into my hands first.

I have been told that in order to find the perfect spinning wheel you need to try different ones out - which is ONE of the reasons why the NY sheep and wool festival will be so wonderful this weekend. However, I must admit that I have my eye on one of these:It is an Ashford Traditional Spinning Wheel. I think she is beautiful, and while I haven't spun on one like her yet, I am sure that we will have an instant bonding.

Wish me luck as we will probably have our first meeting this weekend, and first impressions are so important!

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

I really am alive

I know, I know... it has been way too long since I last posted... but here is a quick little post to let you know I have not forgotten about blogging.

Rhinebeck, aka The New York Sheep and Wool Festival, is in less t
han two weeks (or 10 days!)... I have hopes of wearing the Eyelet Cardigan by Alison Williams that I have been working on for the festival. I have ten days left and I have the back of the cardigan to finish, a sleeve cap to finish, a sleeve to start and finish, and then I need to sew the pieces together and block it. (I have the two front sides of the cardigan complete.)

So, needless to say I will be knitting in my spare time... if I can pull myself away from my latest discovery/soon-to-be obsession - spinning. I have taken one 1-hour lesson to learn spin on a drop spindle. I have been practicing and feel like I am improving (I am window shopping for a spinning wheel at Rhinebeck. The obsession begins.)
I've been turning this: into this: So needless to say, it has been hard to pull myself away from my obsessions to blog. I also have legitimate excuses, like not have a working computer for nearly two weeks.

Hopefully my next post will be sooner than later.