Friday, October 28, 2011

Congratulations Commentor #9

Happy Fiber Arts Friday!  What have you been doing this week with fiber?

I've been spinning a ball of roving I picked up at the Ann Arbor Fiber Expo since it reminds me so much of the season...

it's always a thrill to see the difference between the roving and the singles.  I'll spin 4 oz on each of two bobbins then ply them.

It's been a pretty crazy week that started with the aforementioned trip to Ann Arbor on Saturday for the Fiber Expo.  We saw lots of friends both shopping and vending.  Nice show in a nice location.  Lunch at Zingerman's Deli was a special treat...thanks Paula!

I've done a little bit of everything this week.  The ends are woven in on The Big Ass Sweater... now for miles of mattress stitch.

the table is 32" x 60", you're looking at the two sleeves, separately and the front and back stacked on top of each other...perhaps this will give you an idea the immensity of this sweater.  Also the fact that it took 14 skeins of Berroco Ultra Alpaca...that's a lot of yarn! I'm so glad that I bought it on sale a while back.

Check out this super cute little bag with a zip top.  It'll make a nice little tool bag. And I like the little alpacas.
Let's hope that the weather is decent this weekend so I can get my dye pot cooking with these...
my kind friend Tamara gave me instructions on using these marigold heads as dye stuff.  I'm pretty excited about it.  I just hope I can figure out the chemistry of it all...I can do accounting all day long but when it comes to figuring percentages of weights I'm a bit of a slacker.

Yay!  The random number generator chose #9!  That means Andrea will be receiving a little package of handspun from me soon.  (got a color/fiber preference?)  Thanks to all who left comments regarding washing techniques for knitwear.

Have a great weekend everybody!  Hop over and say hello to all the talented peeps on Andrea's Fiber Arts Friday blog.

PS:  If you're in the West Michigan area this weekend be sure to stop in at the Delta Plex and check out the alpacas!

Friday, October 21, 2011

Wash Day Contest

What does your handknit wash day look like?

Leave a comment telling me about it or a link to a photo of your freshly washed you wash them; hand, machine and what type of soap you use, etc.  We'll have a little contest.  Random drawing from all the comments posted by midnight Thursday, October 27th, 2011.  Winner gets a skein of my handspun yarn and a little surprise to go with it.  If someone says you sent them over, you'll get an additional entry.

Here's a little skein I wound up last night.  Brings to mind snow on a spruce don't you think?  click photo to biggie-size it

I've been spinning directly off combs this week.  Jacob fleece.  Love this technique, learned it from Beth Smith of The Spinning Loft at Michigan Fiber Festival.  I find it amazing how different the singles look when spun in this fashion.  Not only does it appear loftier than when spinning from a batt but it is also practically nep free!  No joke, though, it's a lot of work...all that combing.  I drape a rectangle of vinyl across my lap to protect my clothing (and skin) from the comb tips...they are deadly sharp!

Looks something like this but you'll have to use your imagination a bit and add a drafting hand that during the pic is holding the camera...ignoring the jammies and slippers and dog butt.
Working hard at spinning a bit thicker single in the hope that I'd end up with a nice worsted weight that I could knit a sweater with.

Isn't it amazing how you can get motivated to do things with heavier weight yarn when the weather cools off?  It's certainly feeling like late fall here in West Michigan.  The heat was actually turned on here yesterday morning...The Saint was asking in a rather plaintive way Wednesday how long I was going to hold out before I turned it on.  When I went to the basement yesterday morning for something and it was warmer down there than in the main part of the house I figured it was time.  Are any of you still holding out?  I remember reading a funny post by Stephanie a few years back about the contest she has with her family to see who can hold out the longest.  It made me laugh.

For those of you that are fans of LittleDog here's his favorite blog.  Check it out if you like pugs, great photography and a good laugh.

Thanks so much for visiting.  Good luck with the contest.  Remember to visit the crafty peeps over on Andrea's blog.  They faithfully post for Fiber Arts Friday and I get some great inspiration from them all.  Have a great weekend!  I'll be hanging with my BFF Paula down at the Ann Arbor Fiber Expo on Saturday.  Maybe I'll see ya!

Friday, October 14, 2011

FAF 10-14-11

Happy Fiber Arts Friday everybody!  I want to send a big thank you to Vivian for this beautiful necklace.  Isn't is stunning?  She also sent me this very nice birthday card...
LittleDog did not like the birthday card, at all.  When I showed it to him he growled then barked his head off.  When I laid it flat on the floor he would come sniff it and put his foot on it but as soon as I'd pick it up again and show it to him he'd start with the growling and barking again.  He just didn't get it I guess.

Pictured above with the beautiful necklace and the super scary card is the sock I finished while I was enjoying my day off lunch.  It's knit with Berroco Comfort Sock and it's my new favorite yarn, so very soft.  Several rows of the second sock were done before I headed home.

I had the most awesome day off , ran a few errands that needed to be done then I stopped at Panera Bread and had lunch and knit for 2 whole hours.  I listened to the end of Little Bee (which was a really good story) and enjoyed all that knitting time without LittleDog in my lap.

Also finished in the past week...the naughty socks.
This may be my only attempt at toe up with an afterthought heel socks.  Not a fan of the fit or look of these socks.  I may let these rest a while before tackling that technique again.  The bind off is too tight at the top of the cuff so I'll be taking that out and trying a different type of cast off in hopes it can be made more flexible.

On Sunday the GR Yarnies met at Via Verde Farm for spinning and alpaca petting.  It was so beautiful and peaceful that I really didn't want to leave when it was time.  Thank you, again, Tamara!
A week old  cria greeted us and the alpacas are so tame that strangers can pet them.

You could say it's been another full week here at Chez B.  We hope you all have had a full week too.  Thank you all so much for stopping in and saying hello.

Be sure to visit the other talented fiber peeps over on Andrea's blog.

Friday, October 7, 2011

It's over

Tonight they announced the winner of ArtPrize 2011.  A large mosaic of the crucifixion.  That I do not have a picture of.  I liked the artist's mosaic last year more.  That one took second place in ArtPrize 2010.

I found this piece on Wednesday and really thought it was amazing...
I love how some of the flowers are shooting out of the arrangement, very fun and it was a huge painting.  At the same venue was this awesome piece...
my snap definitely doesn't do this justice or give you any idea that it is about 20 feet long.

I liked this sculpture...
I took this side shot so as not to be filling the frame with parked cars.

And just for fun...
 "Rusty" by Rich Branstrom actually made it into the top 10.

On that note...I will doff my art critic hat until this time next year and return to the fibery things in life.

I've spun and plied and knit this week.  I even did some knitting for someone else this week.  It felt so good to do a 3 needle bind off on Paula's sweater shoulders.  Reminds me that I need to do a couple miles of mattress stitch soon to get that Big Ass Sweater done before the snow flies.

This weeks spinning/plying...6 oz Winding Wool Creek Farm "Mellow"
My latest incarnation of the Button Tab Hat...almost finished.  Handspun Yarn Hollow, Moss, 50% Merino, 25% Bamboo, 25% Tussah Top.  When plied I had 204 yds of this luscious green yarn.

ready for decreases and a couple of pretty buttons from my friend Shine.

Thank you so much for stopping in.  Be sure to say hello and then hop on over to check out all the other creative folks that link up to Andrea's blog for Fiber Arts Friday.