Wednesday, July 22, 2009

There are some days where I'd like to live on a deserted tropical island some where. Complete with a life time supply of wool and various accessories, alcoholic beverages, Internet, and a boat that I can send to pick up the people I desire to have in my presence.

I'm not even sure that I'd like to keep a Cabana Boy on hand at all times.. Perhaps he can just stay on the mainland with a pager for emergency purposes.


In other news, the beach trip was fun. I've got pictures but no patience to post them. Maybe later. Maybe never.

Although I did manage to take a bangin' picture of the Hatteras Lighthouse. See?

Like an asshat, I brought the camera but forgot the memory card, so I was stuck with just the cell phone camera. For some strange reasons, small islands with wild ponies don't have electronics stores for forgetful vacationers like myself. Go figure.

Here's something fun, though!

01) Are you currently in a serious relationship? Sure.

02) What was your dream growing up? To marry Simon LeBon. Seriously.

03) What talent do you wish you had? Telepathy

04) If I bought you a drink what would it be? Today, a Woodford and Ginger Ale

05) Favorite vegetable? Cucumbers

06) What was the last book you read? Intentional Spinner

07) What zodiac sign are you? Scorpio

08) Any Tattoos and/or Piercings? Explain where. Tattoos - various areas.

09) Worst Habit? Not having a filter on what comes out of my mouth.

10) If you saw me walking down the street would you offer me a ride? Ya'll better say yes.

11) What is your favorite sport? Swimming

12) Do you have a Pessimistic or Optimistic attitude? Pessimistic, but I try and be Optimistic when it comes to helping others.

13) What would you do if you were stuck in an elevator with me? Ohh! We could have knit-in!

14) Worst thing to ever happen to you? I can't say that I can pick one..

15) Tell me one weird fact about you. I don't like eating food that's blue - weirds me out.

16) Do you have any pets? Yep! A chihuahua that I love dearly.

17) What if I showed up at your house unexpectedly? Invite you in! Far be it from me to be rude!

18) What was your first impression of me? I don't remember that kind of stuff unless you were a total asshat.

19) Do you think clowns are cute or scary? Neither. Clowns are strange..

20) If you could change one thing about how you look, what would it be? Smaller girls.

21) Would you be my crime partner or my conscience? Crime partner..

22) What color eyes do you have? Hazel, and the color changes depending on the color I wear.

23) Ever been arrested? Come pretty close!

24) Bottle or can soda? Well, I usually only drink soda when it's served to me in a cup.

25) If you won $10,000 today, what would you do with it? Pay off all debts, buy my dream wheel, and get my savings account healthy again.

27) What's your favorite place to hang out? Depends on what I'm in the mood for!

28) Do you believe in ghosts? Our spirits have to go somewhere..

29) Favorite thing to do in your spare time? Knit.. or spin.

30) Do you swear a lot? Hell yeah. Mouth like a sailor.

31) Biggest pet peeve? Eye rolls, and ignored emails/phone calls.

32) In one word, how would you describe yourself? Caring. Until you screw me over..

33) Do you believe/appreciate romance? Romance is fun, but reality is better sometimes.

34) Favorite and least favorite food? Favorite? Cheese Dip. Least Favorite? Turkey.

35) Do you believe in God? Yessir.

Ok, that's enough for now.

Hopefully when I come back tomorrow, I'll have some sort of substance for all of you.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Just A Song Before I Go...

Hello! You've reached Ms. KnottyKnits and Company. Mum has arrived safely, and we're heading to the beach!

Please leave a message after the beep.


Meanwhile, back at the ranch, my pretty colors are all in a row.

(We stopped at the Farmer's Market in Raleigh, yesterday. What a great place!)

Tuesday, July 14, 2009


It's what I am looking forward to. My mum comes in tomorrow afternoon and we'll be leaving Thursday for an extended weekend out at Ocracoke Island. I'm very excited and looking forward to it.

Mean while, I've got some yarn that's busy drying itself in the evening sun. Wanna see?

360+ yards, 18 WPI, BFL in the "Camo" Colorway, purchased from Zarzuela's Etsy Store.

I've not really a clue as to what to spin next. I've got some alpaca lace weight that I'm working on, but I think that's going to rest for a bit. I'm tempted to play with another batt... What do you think?

I have one batt from Sugarbee Studios that is calling my name. It would be perfect to play with - it's got three colors in it, and I've been wanting to mess around with something that I can control how much color goes where, so maybe that will be next.

Well, never mind. Maybe has become definitely. In a matter of seconds.

Life happens that fast.

Here is what I have done! First, this didn't come as one big batt - it's actually four very finely carded batts. Makes life nice - very little prep required. (Unless you are me, of course)

So, I laid out the first batt, and set about ripping it into strips, keeping them all lined up so that I could keep them straight, and I separated the remaining batts in the same fashion. Aren't they pretty strips?

Now comes the tricky part. I want to keep the same color sequence. In my mind (which is laughable at this point), I want to spin this so that the spun singles have the same graduation in color as the batt. I'll do a two-ply, keeping the color sequence the same for each bobbin so that we can get some nice matchy matchy I think I'm going to Megan-proof this by getting out some baggies, and labeling them with a number. That way I'll always know who is on first. And who is on second.

I think.


Forget the fact that I could have weighed this fiber first. Ya'll know how I like to do that. Unfortunately, it's all pretty and separated and labeled.


Happy spinning kids!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Whose Idea Was This, Anyway?

How many yards can one person spin in one month?

I think it's time that I admit that I had NO CLUE that the Tour de Fleece is as long as it is. Granted, I did read the dates, guidelines, etc, but I really had no idea what an utterly wonderful time suck this would become! I've been averaging at least one hour per day.

Saturday, it was bad.

I watched the entire Season 2 of the Tudors in under 24 hours. While spinning. And perhaps a bit of knitting. Do you see?

Los Monos Locos/The Crazy Monkeys, from the toe up
Knit on US 0s, using Ms. Babs Yummy Sock in Holly

Two finished cuffs.

You all know what this means. I've finished a pair of socks.

And hey, look at this!

A swatch! Done with my own handspun. Will wonders never cease.

Spinning updates to come tomorrow.

I hope everyone had a fabulous weekend!

Monday, July 6, 2009

Color Me Happy... Or At Least Blue!

You know, it's not often that I truly let myself ramble on this thing. I guess part of that is because you don't need to know *everything*, and the other part is that most of ya'll come here for the yarn, fiber, jokes, and or the general insanity.

Today, you are in for a real treat. Oh yes.

Sunday afternoon I decided to try my hand at corespun yarn. I had this really neat batt from Butterfly Girl Designs, and I just knew it was going to be wonderful. It was going to be easy. It was going to be fast. I was going to love it. Instead, I was close to tears. I think I had the wrong type of fiber for my experience level, and I really couldn't wrap my head around how to get a balanced yarn. It made me pretty angry. I'm an intelligent young woman, capable of many wonderful things, and I can't make art yarn??? WTF? FuF!!1!1!

Then it occurs to me. There's a lot going on in life right now. Between Cabana Boy not being in town, Mini-Me is getting ready to go through a tough spot, and work being generally psychotic, my mom coming to visit, I have enough crap to try and figure out and deal with! I certainly didn't need to be trying to figure out a new trick.

So I took a break and took a shower. Hell, it was 4 pm, I was due.
While I was in the shower, I decided that I would play with plying. Got out of the shower, spun up about 10 yards of the batt, and plied with some crochet thread. Almost what I wanted, but not quite. I ran some errands, picked up some silver sewing thread and went home. Test spun some more and fell in love.

The last couple of yarns I have spun have been very focused - I knew what I wanted them to be, and therefore it was my job to whip them into shape. While I love what I have created, the focus it took to spin these yarns really made it a drag by the last bobbin. I was desperate for something quick and fun.


Approx 100+ yards, plied with simple silver thread. Fiber from Butterfly Girl Designs

Let me just tell you about spinning this batt. It's forgiving. It does it's own thing, and I was happy to let it do it. The bamboo is so soft, the merino was light and fluffy, and the sparklies made my heart sing. There was no thought required. I didn't have to worry about color sequence, I didn't have to care about how much conditioning I did before hand, or if it was too thick or too thin, I just ripped off a strip and let the fiber do what it wanted to do.

It is important to note here that I specifically did two things. First, I put less twist in the yarn than I normally would. I wanted the thread to hold the single together.. to almost carry it a long. In my test spins, I noticed that the areas with less twist gave me the exact look I wanted. Second, I found that you need to make sure you put a lot of tension on your thread. That's what's going to give it the illusion that the fiber undulates from above the thread to below the thread. I took a picture of how I was holding the thread so that you could see:

In a nut shell, I would let out some of the thread, hold it taught, then slide my right hand down the length of the thread. When I felt like I had gone far enough, I would pinch off the twist with my right hand, let some more thread out, and bring the yarn down the thread again. Using my right index finger as a sort of a guide, I let the yarn work itself around the thread.

If you've done coils before, it's almost the same thing, only you are not pushing the yarn up the thread to create your coil. Although, if you are feeling froggy, you most certainly could. It was really interesting to see what I could create, just by switching the tension on the yarn, or the angle at which I would let it twist onto the thread.

This was FUN. I would highly recommend messing around with this technique. I'm sure there's a name for it somewhere, but I'm currently too blissed out by the whole experience to care.

And that's the goal right?

Happiness via fiber.

Talk About Scary!

Look at this! I'm going to admit that this isn't all that there is. By the way, if you look at my flickr, you can see that this isn't all that was laid out on my bed - this shot left some out. Egads, people!!

I felt the need to look at my choices for the TdF. I've got some wonderful fibers that are from wonderful friends that come from their sheepies, but I felt it best to let those rest for now. I'm trying to do new things here for the TdF, and a lot of my home grown fibers are set aside for specific projects and stuff.

I hope that everyone had a GREAT 4th of July. It's one of my favorite holidays, and I got to spend it with some wonderful friends.

Last week I offered a challenge to all of my readers! There was a lot of yarn in the bowl, and I know it was a downright pain in the ass for ya'll. That being said, anyone who left a comment will be entered into the drawing for the pink stuff.

Here are the answers to the challenge:

From clockwise from the 6 o'clock position - my handspun, Malabrigo lace, Tofutsies, two skeins from Sundara's Season's Collection, a bitty cake of Artyarns Super Merino, and Twiggy Knits from the Knitting Purls Sock Club. In the very center is some more handspun. Thank you all for playing along!

Our lucky winner is....

Darcy! Congratulations Darcy!! I'll be sending you an email shortly!

You are now the proud owner of 2 skeins of pink Malabrigo lace.

Happy Monday everyone!!!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

I'm Handing Out Hints!!!

Ok, so I know this contest is a toughy. I'm a mean evil woman with nothing better to do than to make you work for pink stuff. Which is yarn, by the way.

Here are some hints:

- 2 of these yarns are handspun
- The pink stuff will go to whomever gets the most correct
- 2 of these yarns come from the same dyer, and are part of a club
- 1 of these yarns is the June installment of the Knitting Purls Sock Club
- Only one of these is lace


There is no J. Knits, no Claudia Handpaint, no Tempted, no Bonnie Portmore

I know I'm wrong, but you guys wouldn't have it any other way, would you?