Jobo Designs

Letting the crafty creative juices flow. Knitting, spinning, crafting, dyeing, rabbits, sheep and more!

29. June 2015 18:14
by Jobo
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Sock Knitting Challenge - Pair #7

29. June 2015 18:14 by Jobo | 0 Comments

Last week I managed to finish another great looking pair of socks - I'm calling them the "Purple Pinstripe Knock-Offs"... since they're similar to the "Pinstripe" free pattern on Ravelry.  I haven't actually looked at the pattern, but saw many many of them go by in the Addicted to Sock Knitting group on Facebook in the last few months.  I had planned on just doing these ones plain, but then when it came time to switch from Ribbing to the leg I thought - what the Heck!  Be adventurous, and decided to throw in a column of slipped stitches for fun.  I'm not sure if it's the way the Pinstripe Pattern did it, but I do like the way it looks!

 

The Pattern:

- Composed on the fly... Twisted Rib 1x1 Cuff, Slipped-stitch column every 8 stitches around, Simple Slipped-stitch Gusset Heel.

 

The Yarn:

- Knit Picks Hawthorne (oops! I threw out the ball band!)

 

8. February 2015 17:54
by Jobo
8 Comments

Spinning and a Plying Ball

8. February 2015 17:54 by Jobo | 8 Comments

I've been struggling for the past week with another bout of lack of sleep... to the point of not really being able to see straight, let alone follow a pattern or count things.  lol.  Yes, that tired.  childrenpleasegtfts.

When I'm exhausted... spinning is my go-to activity.  It's repetitive, methodical, and best of all... NO counting or keeping track of anything.  Just grab a handful of fiber and draft, flick, draft, flick, wind, repeat.  It's soothing even to type it out.

I've been working on my Fat Cat Knits "Dragonfly" Gradient on Merino and it is coming along famously.  I bought 6 oz... and separated it out to make a nice fine 2-ply running from deep plummy purple through a robin egg shade of blue, into teal, and finally lime green.  (you can read more about it here)

The fiber was divided into 4 portions (2 identical pieces of purple/blue and 2 identical pieces of teal/lime) and I've completed the spinning of both the purple/blue ones - so I wound a plying ball the other night.  To give you an idea of the fineness of the singles... It took more than two hours to hand wind the ball from the full spindle cops.  I forgot to photograph the full spindles, but here is the pretty ball:

DSC_0711

I'm hoping there will be enough yards of thread to make a really large stole or shawl.  Ideally I'd like to make a big round something, or maybe a big rectangle wrap.  With the gradient, it will be necessary to stick to a shape that will highlight the progression... but choosing the path will be part of the fun, as it always is.

DSC_0739

Here is the lime green portion getting a good start... the spindle is a Grizzly Mountain Arts Bead... and the bowl is a nice shallow wooden Thai dipping sauce bowl :)  I am hoping to try and spin at least a few handfuls of fiber each day... even on the days I am really tired out.  The spinning seems to help.  Also - Chocolate and Coffee.  Forever.

24. August 2011 08:03
by Jobo
0 Comments

Playing... with samples

24. August 2011 08:03 by Jobo | 0 Comments

Often when you buy a new spindle... a handful or chunk of some sort of fiber is included - presumably so you can test out the spindle and learn how to use it properly.  But what do you do with all of the little yarn samples?  they aren't really big enough to make an entire project with, but at the same time it feels wrong to just throw them in the leftovers bin with all the other tiny leftover balls of yarn.  (If I was smart, I'd likely throw some of that stuff away, but you never know when you need waste yarn to do a provisional cast on, or tie tomato plants to a trellis...)

diamond pattern 4 swatch

This is what became of the sample of Ashland Bay Merino that came a few weeks ago with a Turkish spindle I acquired... I didn't weigh the fiber itself, and I didn't measure the final yardage of the thread - but there was lots and lots.  I'd hazard a guess of somewhere between 100 - 150 yards of light lace weight.  The thread itself is 2 ply, and a little bit lighter than a standard lace. 

I love the color!  This is the "Violet" solid colorway.  I often shy away from solid colors, but I think I should try something like this again.  I liked the simplicity of the spin... no handpainted colors to arrange, or heathers to worry about even spinning so the colors would mix appropriately.

The swatch is another piece from the Haapsalu Shawl Book (which I've raved about many times before, and no doubt will again).  I've been working different samples from the book with the hopes that someday I will be capable of knitting myself an authentic (or as close as possible to it) Haapsalu shawl from handspun yarn.  Traditionally these are knit from 100% wool... which has a nice amount of bounce and stretch, and apparently is the best thing for knitting Nupps (the little bobble-ish things you see in the center of the diamonds above.  Nupp rhymes with "soup")  This particular pattern is one of the "Diamond" motifs, named Diamond Pattern #4 in the book.  The swatch was knit on size 4 mm needles, with a slipped stitch on the left and right edges to make an easily blockable rectangle of lace.  I like the way that the slipped stitch creates the chain-like edge... Perfect for simple blocking.  The finished sample swatch is 9 x 18 inches - if I had had 3x as much, it would have almost been a whole narrow scarf!  Yeek!

People have asked before what I actually do with my lace swatches, and the simple answer is - basically nothing.  I have a little pile of lace pieces.  I pet them, and play with them, and generally abuse them by carrying them in pockets to see how the yarn holds up to wear.  I've thought of sewing them together or something, but they are all different shapes and sizes.  The thought also crossed my mind of having some of the pretty ones framed or something.  Mostly, the swatches just help me to learn about the yarns I make, practice blocking intricate laces, and also practice knitting complex and foreign lace motifs.  It's like test-driving a pattern/motif before really committing to it ;)  I know some people hate swatching with passion, and feel that it is a big waste of time.  I think I might be a swatch-a-holic!

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