Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Yarn as therapy!

** For some yarns for sale, scroll down!! **

First of all, sorry for the silence. It's been hard for me. Bit over a week ago I got a letter from the Unemployment bureau over here to tell me they are questionning my right to unemployment payments. Apparently my previous boss didn't put up a very nice image of me - that makes for a promiss! - and now they are threatening not to pay me unemployment. I'm counting on this money to make it through the coming months, as I would like to wait to start working till the beginning of September. Tomorrow the verdict will fall as I have to go in for a talk about this all. I'm super nervous and afraid I'll collaps. I to often do these days. I honestly don't know how I'll manage without the unemployment. Plus it seems like not many people are wanting to hire me. :( Sad me.

Anyway, I do have an FO to show. Remember the bulky silk I had up for sale? (I still have it, scroll down!) I decided to try knitting something quick with it and I found the Ubernatural by Glampyre. Perfect! So this is what I have after a day of knitting :

Sorry for the crappy modelled shot. I knit this with 2 balls and a little of a third. Tells me I need to remeasure the yardage of these balls of yarn! I like it a lot! I should have used bigger needles for the ribbing, but aside from that it's great, and it's pure silk!! It's super soft. I of course plan on knitting one out of wool too, but not before the end of the Summer!

I also knitted 2 Booga Bags for my sisters (both for their birthdays) but I forgot to take pictures of course. They were both out of - different - Noro Kureyon. They turned out a lot smaller then I had thought they would be, but that must be the pattern. I just don't know. Also, the one bag didn't felt as good as the other. Strange. I do love Noro, but I might use it more for other knitting then for felting. I saw this lovely Kureyon blanket in Mason-Dixon Knitting, and of course I want one. I guess if I keep collecting single skeins in colours I like I might get there some day! :D

I'm still knitting on some stuff, not making much progress. Don't ask. Right now I just don't feel like knitting with mohair, and the 2 most pressing WIPs are of course in mohair. Drives me crazy!

I am in a spinning mood though. Look at what I got done :

Blue wool, got it through a swap, about 150gr of sport weight. Socks to be probably.

Green Superwash Merino through Spunky Club by Boogie. 100gr, somewhere between fingering and sport, going to be socks for sure! I didn't like the colour of the unspun wool that much (I'm not a big green fan I guess) but after spinning it it turned out great. Can't wait to spin more superwash.

Of course I'm spinning again, and I'm getting the hang of spinning even finer then this!

My addiction to sock yarn keeps continuing. Here's what I recently got :

Crappy picture of some beautifull sockyarn by Brooklyn Handspun.

Lovely Cashmere sock yarn by Kerrie of HipKnits .


Anyway, I'm making my last yarn purchase as I'm typing this, and I'm putting myself on a diet for the coming 2 months (except during my trip to Turkey, if I find something over there I might just buy it :D). Anyway, I'm only allowing myself to buy yarn with the money I'm raising through selling some of my huge stash. There is so much yarn I won't ever get around using, and I just want to share with all of you.

Today I'm going to show a few yarns I tried to sell before. If they don't sell I'll be putting them up on Ebay really soon. So please, if you are interested, email me! I would love to get the prices I'm stating here, which are really low, but you can make me an offer! I will have to add a little for shipping, depends on what you buy, but I'm willing to pay half of the shipping as I'm in Belgium.

Bulky silk, used above for Ubernatural! Not know yardage. You need only 3 skeins to knit up Ubernatural. It's a really nice soft green. I would normally sell this for $12 a ball, but I'm only asking for $9 if you order through here before Friday! It retails at $20. I have 10 balls, let me know how many you want if you are interested.

80% angora, 20% wool yarn, heavy fingering weight. Nice salmon colour. Super gorgious yarn! High quality! I'm selling all 16 balls for only $40! I think this would normally retail for almost $160! But I got it for $80. The colour doesn't really suit me, because I'm pale, but it's a really nice colour!

I'm currently not finding the pictures of the other yarn (some mohair, some wool) so I'll upload them later. I'm also going to sell off some of my sock yarns, I'm willing to swap those. More later this week. Off to bed now!

Monday, June 19, 2006


Ok, for most of you this might not be the most exciting thing, but for me it is. After a horrible few days (maybe more of that later) I got to visit some lovely alpaca's today. It's not so common over here as Alpaca's aren't held that often.

A few months ago I left this message on a site of a seller of Alpaca's. It just said that if someone didn't know what to do with the fleece of their alpaca's I was willing to take them. A few weeks ago I was contacted by someone who was going the sheer his alpaca's and I could have the fleeces! I was so happy.

So today I drove 45min to arrive at this lovely little house. I could see kangaroos at the side of the house, and as soon as the people let me in I could also see the alpaca's. Look at them :

The lady's, well, most of them!

The white one is the biggest, and the brown/white one is the youngest of those shorn.

The big male (silver grey) who has 7 ladies to his disposal!

The one not shorn is the youngest of the group, only 6 months old. The other one is a brown female.

They have 7 quite young females, and one male. The male is now turning 3 and apparently that's the age he's ready to reproduce. And he's free to do what he wants with the 7 females! Well, 5 actually, 'cause the youngest 2 aren't ready yet, still to young. But they were beautiful! And I was amazed to see them from so up close! Next year I'll be seeing, hopefully, a bunch of little ones!

This is what I actually brougth home with me :

Take your count! Yep, 7 bags of fleeces! And that for only €25! That's nothing of course. The guy did this for the first time and I have to say he did a great job! He tried to keep the locks as long as possible. I should check to make sure, but I'm supposed to have 2 silver greys, 1 white, 2 light brown (one brown/white from the young female) and one dark brown/black. The small 6months old is actually a black, but they haven't shorn her this year.

They are planning on shearing their alpaca's every 2 years, and I think they will offer me the fleece again! I'll be knitting them something over the winter I think!

Normally I should be visiting again in a few weeks 'cause then these 2 ladies will be relieved from their heavy hair as well :

Before they had the alpaca's they used to have Llama's. They still have 2 females. They haven't been shorn in 4 years so I'm aware that there might not be that much useable about the fleeces, but I just couldn't refuse. Whatever I have I just have, right? Oh, and apparently sometimes a male alpaca and a female Llama end up having a little one too, so I'm just curious how that might turn out!

In the coming days I'll be picking up a Clun Forest Fleece. I'm also awaiting news on a Gotland fleece, don't know when the animal will be shorn. And then during July I'll be picking up a few fleeces from Ouessant sheep! Looking forward to that! So lots of spinning in my future!!! :D

Off to bed now!

Thursday, June 15, 2006

I'm back ... again

Yep, I didn't feel like posting in a while, and again I'm making a commitment of trying to post more regulalry again. Now I still don't feel like writing. Strangely enough. I haven't kept my journal (paper) in over a year, I'm more then a year behind with my snail mail letters (I think many have dropped me as a pal by now, and I can't blame them, right?) and keeping up a blog is not really that easy, though I want to show of my progress. Knitting (and spinning) is about the only thing I'm doing right now. And still for that I don't really have the patience. I can't watch a movie without getting up and moving around several times. I can't knit more then a few rows without having to do something else. I'm very restless and I guess it won't change any time soon.

The biggest problem is I don't really know where this is coming from. I usually very good at finding the origin of my feelings. I know what's causing my depression and it feels rather stupid to take meds for it as I know I won't be cured of the depression if the problem isn't solved. And as far as I know it's not going to be solved (it's mainly my father and his ridiculous behaviour that's causing everything, but I'm not going to go in depth over here). But alas, I have no clue why I'm this restless. I'm either sleeping or wondering around. I don't get anything done at all. It's driving me nuts!

Anyway, there is knitting content here, so don't leave! Let's start with 2 FO's I haven't showed yet :

I am sorry for the crappy picture, but I present you my Green Gable! Don't in Rowan Wool Cotton, in Grant I think though I'm not sure. I made it just as the pattern and I do realize I could have done with some more length (had enough yarn for it). But I'm wearing it and loving it! The Wool Cotton blend is perfect for me as I'm most of the time rather cold.

Stats :
Pattern : Green Gable
Yarn : Rowan Wool Cotton
Needles : Addi turbo, 4mm and 3.5mm
Started + finished : May 21 till May 24

Yep, this was an amazing fast knit and I am so happy with it! It still needs a good blocking. I steamed it, and wore it, and will block it for good after it's first washing! :D

Secondly :

Handknit socks!

Stats :
Pattern : my own
Yarn : my own handspun!
Needles : Addi turbo 2.5mm

Started and finished in less then a week!

This is how I knit my socks when I'm not sure about yardage of when I want to use all the yarn I have. I use a provisional cast on and start right at the heelturn (in this case a heelflap). Then I knit the foot, do so for both socks. Then I pick up the stitches for both socks (on one neede, magic look) and start knitting the leg from both ends of the ball of yarn. Here I used a 3x1 ribbing. I just knit till I'm almost running out of yarn and then I cut the thread. I used a K1P1 bind off which looks neat! My socks are high anklets really, but I'm more then happy with them!

As said, this is my own handspun! I wanted to go for somewhat self-striping, but as you can see it didn't really work out. I used pre-dyed merino in black and eggplant. I took 5gr heaps and spun one after another. When plying the yarn the first bobbin was striping (big stripes), but the second bobbin wasn't at all! That's what you see on the foot of these socks. But turns out I love this effect and will be spinning more yarn like this soon!

The yarn was slightly thick for a sock yarn, especially for the 2.5mm needles I used, but I wanted a very tight fabric. These will be house socks coming winter! My spinning is getting more consistently thin, so I'm hoping for more sock yarns in my future!

The spinning and knitting was all done in less then a week! I just loved it. And hooray for my small feet! :D

What am I working on right now? I decent amount of socks (pics when they are ready), a sweater for an order, and this :

First if Butterfly and second is Raspy, both from Rowan. I should be working mostly on Butterfly and the sweater mentionned above (Butterfly is for a wedding half July, the sweater should be done soon) but I'm mostly working on Raspy, or socks. Awfull, right? Well, I finally am finding my rythm with Butterfly. So that's ok. I need to pick up the sweater again. But lately we've been experiencing a heat wave and it's to hot during the day to knit much except socks or cotton, and during the night it's equally hot so I only manage a few rows of mohair stuff, mostly Butterfly.

I'm really anxious about starting a few other knitting probjects. Thanks to this lady I'm now totally addicted to Phildar designs! They are really easy to get by, and they excist in Dutch! So I bought a huge amount of books (they are so cheap!) and can't wait to start knitting from them!

Oh, and one more thing, a total disaster in knitting :

This was a bag for my sisters birthday before felting. I had dyed both yarns, both 100% wool. Now somehow I turned the red into superwash while dyeing (don't ask me!) 'cause only the light pink felted! Also, the red is now almost totally gone from the bag onto an old, torn jeans I use to felt. Such a huge dissapointment! I will have to knit another bag for my sister. Oh, her bithday was last weekend, so :'(.

Off now, to watch some series on tv (I manage that, strangely enough) and some knitting.