Saturday, December 31, 2011

A Little Crochet

Finished up this crochet project last week. I am quite pleased by the results. The yarn is Paradigm Sock (80% Superwash Merino, 20% Nylon, 400 yds per 100 gm skein), dyed by my talented friend YarnLuvinLizzy. The yarn was quite lovely and soft to work with, and dyed beautifully. The pattern is my own "Ilithyia Shawlette",
available on Ravelry and in the Etsy shop.
I used a little over a skein and half for this shawl, though one skein would be enough for a smaller shawlette.

Fibery Resolutions?

Do you have any fiber related resolutions for 2012? Here are a few of mine.

1. Keep track of my yardage knit, crocheted, and spun for the year. I've always wondered how much yarn and fiber I go through in a year, and as I don't always remember to update Ravelry with all muy projects, hopefully at least I can keep track of it with a Knitmeter

2. Add at least one photo to my Ravelry Projects for each completed project.

3. I am determined to try some colorwork next year, still haven't picked out a potential pattern yet.

4. Knit a sweater..... maybe.

5. Spin some funky art yarn.

6. Learn some new weaving techiniques, perhaps something with two heddles or a pickup stick.

7. Make time regularly for spinning.

I have a feeling there should be something else on this list, what's on yours for 2012?

Sunday, December 25, 2011

More Weaving...

In spite of telling myself that I wasn't going to attempt weaving gifts for all my family this year (as I am still a new weaver and didn't think that it would be a realistic to weave that many gifts in under two months) I ended up doing it anyway.... Oops!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Socks, socks, socks...

I finally got the month-long socks off the needles and blocked, they were definately worth it. I love how the slipped stitches break up the pooling on these.

And of course I had to start on another pair (or three) when they were done. At least the next two pairs were for little feet and didn't take so long. (Note: Do not try socks on the needles on your two year old to check the fit halfway through. He won't understand that they aren't finished and will want to wear them anyway, needles and all. Four year olds seem to be a little more understanding, but will still end up asking you every 10 minutes when his new socks will be done.)

The third pair is almost done now too. I started on Killa for my MIL, thankfully we are doing our Christmas a few days late so I should have enough time to finish them.

Friday, December 9, 2011

On the needles

With cold weather setting in, it just feels like the right time of year to knit socks. (Who am I kidding, it's always the right time of the year to knit socks!)

I've been working on "V-Junkie" by Alice Yu lately. It's going slower than I expected, I don't think the slipped stitches agree with me, but I can finally see the end is getting near. The yarn is SW merino/nylon by Mosaic Moon in a Doctor Who inspired colorway called "New Earth". The cute little baby owl stitchmarkers are from Yarndemon. I'm quite happy with them now, the stitch pattern breaks up the pooling just enough. I'm just hoping that they fit.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

December Shop Special

Special for the month of December at Little Monkey's Stitch n Spin, mention your two favorite colors at checkout and whether you knit, crochet, or both, and recieve a free surprise set of stitchmarkers with your order.

Clip-Style Stitchmarkers for Knitting or Crochet

Snagless Knitting Stitchmarkers

Snagless Mini-Markers for Knitting

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Spinning Outside the Comfort Zone

What is your "Comfort Zone" in spinning?
As a new spinner I tended to focus on trying to spin thinner (ie more yardage) and more consistent yarns, and always went with 2-ply. I just didn't feel confident enough to tackle a single ply yarn, and didn't want to "waste" yardage making a 3-ply yarn. But lately, I've been trying to branch out of my comfort zone a bit, after all, handspun yarn isn't supposed to always try to look like mill spun, it's uniqueness is it's charm. And some looks are better achieved using different spinning techniques.
This summer I worked on spinning singles yarns. Singles yarns are a bit of a challenge for two reasons. First, you have to get the twist just right, too much twist and your yarn is still a curly mess after washing, not enough and your yarn falls apart; without that second ply to stabilize the twist it can just be more difficult to work with. Secondly, if you want a consistent thichness yarn you have to concentrate just a bit more in the spinning as you cant count on a 2nd ply helping to even out the pits that are a little thicker or thinner than the rest, or if you want a thick & thin yarn you have to re-train your fingers (that are now used to spinning thin and even) to draft a little more unevenly and allow the slubby bits through).
I still need to take on the challenges of n-ply yarns, and art yarns like corespun and super coils (though I think I probably need the bulky flier for my wheel before I try coil yarns again, that was a bit of a mess).

So what new techniques do you want to learn as a spinner?

Monday, December 5, 2011

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Why I don't want to knit socks

10 reasons not to knit socks:
1. I rarely even wear socks
2. When I do wear socks it takes me about 30 minutes to find a matching pair, so if I were to knit socks then I'd risk only having half a pair of socks.
3. It is only cold enough here in South Texas to need socks for about 5 days out of the year, every other day it is perfectly comfortable to wear sandals outside (yes even in winter)
4. You have to make a second sock in order for the first to be of any use.
5. Heel shaping (need I say more?)
6. Gauge matters, and if you knit like me and your gauge swatch almost always somehow has a different gauge than your FO, this could be a problem.
7. Teensy tiny little knitting needles, eeek!
8. Teensy tiny little stitches,
9. and about eleventy-billon of those teensy tiny little stitches in a pair of socks
10. I have huge feet (which mean even more of those teensy tiny stitches are needed to make socks to fit my feet.

Well 4 months and 6 finished pairs of socks later, I think I'm hooked. I've even started on my 7th pair already.

10 reasons to knit socks:

1. They are so much more comfy to wear than store-bought ones.
2. Fit - They fit my huge feet better than store-bought socks (If you've ever tried to squish size 11 feet into socks meant for size 6-10, you'd know that it's not comfy at all!)
3. It give me a good excuse reason to need to buy more sock yarn.
4. There may be as many stitches in a pair of socks as in a hand knit sweater, but buying nice yarn for a pair of socks is more affordable than buying nice yarn for a sweater since you only need one 4 oz skein for socks.
5. Sock yarn.
6. Self striping sock yarn. (and feet are probably the one place on your body where horizontal stripes actually look good)
7. You only knit socks for people you love (all that work, and when they are used as intended they will eventually wear out)
8. Portability - It's alot easier to take sock knitting with you than it is to take sweater knitting.
9. Why not?
10. Do you really need a reason to knit?

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Treasury - Sweet Dreams Are Made Of These

New treasury featuring LMSnS yarn!

'Sweet Dreams Are Made Of These' by TheWackyWindmill

Lovely collection of pinks and purples using all sorts of wooly goodness!!

Set of 4 Purple and...


Handspun Yarn, Thic...


Sparkly Spinning Ba...


Honeypoof - Handspu...


Merino / Corriedale...


Handspun Rayon/Bamb...


Pincushion Squirrel...


Spinner's Diz -...


Woodland Hood in So...


Hand Dyed Polwarth ...


Handdyed Yarn, &quo...


Fiber Batt for Spin...


Hand Knit Shawl Wra...


Fingerless mittens ...


Spinning Fiber Rov...


Pink Handspun Yarn


Hot off the Wheel

This superwash merino in the "Lucy" colorway from Western Sky Knits was a treat to spin!  So soft and smooth I wish I had picked up a second braid. 4.2 oz, 195 yds, worsted. Available at Bella Tesori.

Just took some thick n thin singles off the wheel today too, they should be ready for pics soon.