Two Left Needles

Knitting, spinning and dyeing
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Found beautiful handspun yarns and felted art at Spinning on the Edge. I especially liked the tentacle basket, Otto in the Water, the fishies, and this pile of handspun.

Also happened upon Maitri's Dragonfly Cottage Fiber Studio. The page layout had sent me running before, but this time I stopped to make sense of it and looked at the Wabi-Sabi Wooly Wonder Batts. If you scroll down, there are links to past batts that are just beautiful. If you make it all the way to the bottom, the "Word to the Wise" spoke to me. It's advice to follow your vision, your dream, even if it's crazy or unexpected or shocking to anyone else.

As a beginner spinner working in mostly isolation, I have felt the need to get feedback from the outside. Is what I'm doing okay? Does it look good? Is it right? Am I on the right track? What do you think? And it makes sense, to want feedback, especially when you're just starting out. But, I need to start looking from the inside out, to find what my vision is, what I want to make. And it doesn't have to be earth shattering or amazing, like those linked above.

And maybe it's really too soon to get anywhere without getting more experience. Hard to create what you want when you don't know materials, tools and techniques.

At the same time, I have been thinking about what I want to make, and making decisions along the way, even if it's not so "conscious" or "self-conscious". Every time you create, you make decisions, you decide.

Jumbled up thoughts. What do you think? ;)

How now, Brown Socks?

Brown Socks

Brown Socks
Started: 1/1/99
Finished: 12/10/05
Pattern: my own
Yarn: Cynthia Helene merino, just over 2 balls
Needles: #5
Notes: Most notes are in yesterday's post. The heel uses the same short row technique as on the Pom Squad Socks on Magknits. When I got to the toe, because of the foot decreases, I had an odd number of stitches on each needle. I simply decreased as usual and kept 1 stitch between decreases, instead of the usual 2. At the end of the last row, I moved the last (unknit) stitch to the opposite needle and kitchenered in the usual way.

Any tightness I was worried about is not noticeable. They're warm and sturdy, and best of all, done!

WIP count

Can you believe it, this brought my WIP count down to 47! Incredible! It didn't last, of course. I started a pair of wristwarmers, a holiday gift. And I'll soon start another couple of holiday gifts. I think 50 is my new threshold, though. No going above 50!

Can you tell I haven't been in a plying kind of mood?

Needs plying

These are the most recent additions to the collection:

29: Winderwood Farms Blue Faced Leicester

It's the last of the Winderwood Farms blue faced leicester, which I'm sure came out much thinner than the first 2 oz I spun a few weeks ago. What I said about this BFL not being as soft as Fleece Artist's BFL - not true. I pre-drafted a bit and suddenly it felt very soft. Pre-drafting has become my friend.

And the first of the Winderwood Farms merino:

30: Winderwood Farms Merino

This was tougher to spin; the weight of the spindle seemed to work against me. I wanted a looser single for a looser ply, but without more twist, the spindle wanted to fall to the ground (and did a couple of times). The merino is very soft and the colors are brilliant sunset; looking forward to seeing how it comes out.

WIP diving

Earlier this week I picked up an older WIP project, Brown Sock. Great name, eh? (Oh, the creativity.) In her abandoned state, all the ribbing for one cuff was done. Here's sock 1, finished a few days ago:

Brown Socks - sock 1

As I worked, the reason for abandonment became clear: boring pattern and color, dpn's, too many stitches for the foot. Can't do much about the first, switched to 2 circs (for socks, it's all circs all the time chez 2LN), and made some modifications for the third:

Brown Socks - sock 1

After turning the heel, I began a series of decreases for the foot so that it wasn't so balloon-like; the resulting fit is very snug (hopefully not too snug).

Brown socks - sock 1

Sock 2 cuff ribbing was done on the circs, and feels a heck of a lot tighter. I wonder if I was negligent in choosing the right needle size?? Bleh, it doesn't matter. They are not the prettiest socks, just good, sturdy, hard-wearing socks that will keep my feet warm on days like today.

Brown Socks - sock 2

Look, I made a mistake! See that little bump in the ribbing?

Brown Socks - sock 2

Didn't notice until 6" were done and couldn't bring myself to care enough to redo all that ribbing.

And now for something completely different

Came across this: Crock pot dyeing (she has a photo gallery of her projects which was inspirational to browse through). I may try this out, dye some more roving. Natasha has been enabling, er, encouraging me, so my near future will include more roving dyeing.