Sunday, 21 March 2010

Catch-up Time

I've slipped a bit with the posting haven't I? Not sure why, other than perhaps I'm not seeing that much that's bloggable at the moment. Chez Knotty is très quiet really. Which is how I like it, but doesn't make for necessarily exciting reading :-)

However, I have been doing quite a bit of crafty stuff, in between dragging myself down to the dole queue, jobhunting and generally wishing hard for a new opportunity to leap out of the undergrowth and save me from a) financial hardship and b) living with my parents. Nothing as yet, but I'm still hoping.

So what's the crafty stuff I've been on with? Well, I got this:

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What is it? Could it be...

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Oh my. Surely not...

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Oh yes. A drum carder. Folks, my life may be complete. This thing (the Ashford Wild Carder) is possibly the most fun I've had fully clothed for a long time. Ashford are officially my Favourite Company of All Time. This thing is so well made, solid, easy to use (fitting the drive belt is a bit of a stretch but achievable) and a good price. Now, I hear you cry, "But you're unemployed! Are you CRAZY buying that thing?" Well, 1) yes, I'm crazy. Bite me. And 2) There is a Plan. It's a pretty loose Plan, but there is one, and when it's ready to bear fruit I will share.

Anyway, what else? I have been spinning:

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Some leftover scrappy bits of fibre, plied with viscose thread with granny stacks. Cool. I like it.

I finished Serina:

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and made a hash of the edging :-) But you can hardly tell so I'm letting it go. The yarn was a pig though. It bled horrendously:

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and it gave me fits when I wound it up as the skein seemed to have been miswound somehow. Anyway, it made a nice fabric and I quite like the finished article. Once it stopped bleeding...vinegar FTW :-)

I wove a collapse weave scarf, with some high-twist handspun singles:

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The collapse was a bit uneven though. I think it needed a lighter sett, maybe a better matched plain yarn as well. I like it though. The fibre is Massam wool from Old Maiden Aunt, in a colourway called "October" which I think was a one-off.

I made some Elf Boots:

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but they're too big for me. They now have a happy new home with Ange who has done some funky needlefelting on them and is going to wear them when she's weaving. I am honoured :-) Now I need to make another pair that actually fit me. They took about two days of working on and off to finish them, so it's a really quick knit and they are stinking cute.

I started a Lopi felted vest, using a pattern and the lovely unspun roving from Twist. It's going to be a seriously boring knit though :-) Definitely a Product knit rather than Process...Isn't the colour lovely though? It's coming out subtly heathered. Nom nom.

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I made a Baktus! Finally. Everyone has made one it seems. I used up some handspun, paired with Patons Orient in "Oxide" colourway, which is an unusual metallic yarn with a grey core and little bouclés coming out. Nice.

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Hard to photograph though. Maybe I should take a modelled shot when it dries.

Finally, I decided I needed another project :-) and it's not the Scottish Tweed raglan either (I've not forgotten, don't worry) but a Shetland Hap shawl. I have Sharon Miller's book on Haps, and Heirloom Knitting as well, and I've wanted to make a hap forever. So, when I happened across this in a charity shop last week:

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I knew it was Fate. That's a lovely 2/8 Shetland, heavily oiled and rather musty, and the oils are making it sticky to knit, but I washed a scrap of it and it is divine. As you'd expect from a Shetland. I have some other colours already in the stash, so a nice striped Old Shale border will be in the works. It's going to be slow progress though:

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And that's it for now :-)


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