Play time, part 2

Ok, so I’m not that mean.  I won’t keep you waiting too long.  Because really?  No one should have to wait for this.

DSC_2813 copyI mean it’s practically electric.  Totally cannot get enough (and I’m usually fairly immune to the charms of blue, but somehow this totally does it for me).

But the thing I find really interesting is how differently each base took the color.  From left to right that’s Matrika, Zenith, Apex, Meridian, and Corona, all from Seven Sisters Arts.  Just as a reminder, they looked like this undyed.

DSC_2044jpg copyAnd ok, maybe you’d expect the Apex (the gray one in the middle to come out different).  But the others surprised me.  The Matrika and the Zenith came out the lightest (I think maybe because of the way the silk in the Matrika and the BFL in the Zenith reflect the light).  Then the Meridian and the Corona are super saturated (my guess is that it’s the superwash merino…I wonder if whatever they do to make it superwash makes it drink up the dye a bit better).  And of course Apex was gray to start with and so it kept that lovely mellow feeling (don’t tell the others but it might just be my favorite).

It was awesome to see how they behaved (and to see everything that goes into dyeing the yarn), and I’m already scheming about what I’m going to make with them.  The Zenith and the Corona are vying with each other to see who gets on the needles first, and I suspect you’ll be seeing more of all of them around here over the next little while!

Play time, part 1

My job is awesome.  I mean yes, sometimes I spend too much time with boxes and labels and tape.  But I also get invited to go visit with fabulous dyers and play with their yarn.  And really, that makes up for an awful lot of time spent packing boxes!

While we were up in Maine, Karen of Seven Sisters Arts asked if I’d like to come over and play.  You know I love her yarn (I used it most recently in Pelagic, and before she opened Seven Sisters Arts, she was half of String Theory, and I’ve used a ridiculous amount of their yarn).  So after checking once or twice to be sure she really meant it, I gleefully said yes bopped right on over.

When I got there, I found a pile of yarn (starting at the bottom left and working across to the top right that’s Matrika, Zenith, Apex, Meridian, and Corona).

DSC_2044jpg copyAnd a top secret notebook full of recipes and colors and truly inspiring bits of fluff.

DSC_2046 copyWe talked color for a bit then got to work (if by work you understand that I mean I said ‘oooooooh, pretty’ a lot while Karen did clever things with dye and hot water and yarn).  It went a little something like this (humming the Jaws theme song now is optional but encouraged).

DSC_2062 copyAnd this.

DSC_2072 copyThen this.

DSC_2075 copyAnd a bit later, this.

DSC_2082 copyOh and a bit later still, this (hint, dyeing yarn takes a long time…keep that in mind next time you look at all those beautiful skeins your favorite dyer offers).

DSC_2089 copyThen?  Then came the completely unbearable drying period before we could see what we’d done.  Which I will now shamelessly replicate by waiting a day or two to show off the final result.  Because I’m terribly terribly mean, that’s why.


So while I did not quite manage to make it to Rhinebeck, I somehow did manage to meet a few furry beasties.  Funny how that happens!

DSC_1370 copyWe swung by the Good Karma Farm, and they just happened to have a few lovely critters to visit with.  They also had what promises to be a much faster way to make socks (they do classes if you want to see for yourself, someday I’m going to have to give it a try).

DSC_1353 copyAnd some impressive machines doing noisy, twirly, yarn-making things.

DSC_1350 copyWhich in turn meant they had yarn…some of which may just perhaps have followed me home!

DSC_1546 copyBut I have to say, the critters tried their best to steal the show.  All around adorable and generally quite happy to come say hi.

DSC_1366 copy

DSC_1358 copy

DSC_1359 copy

DSC_1361 copyNext time you’re in the area, you should totally swing by.  Give fluffy here a scritch hello for me!

Knitting with lobster boat

I got up early one morning to sneak down to the water and take some pictures of knitting as the sun came up.  The lobster boats kept me company.

DSC_1540 copyYou’ll see more of these pictures Tuesday when this comes out, but those focus more on the knitting (and so, alas, omit the boat).  I thought I’d sneak this one in while I had the chance.

Excursion (plus giveaway)

I have strong feelings about travel.  I think it’s a lovely thing to do, but wow do I ever want to take the comforts of home with me when I go.  That means I bring along everything I need to make a proper cup of tea (yes I have brought my teapot on trips), and I have at least one pair of slippers in my suitcase.  This pair is called Excursion, and you can bet it will be accompanying me on my next adventure!

DSC_1174 copyThese are going to make you feel ridiculously clever when you make them.  You cast on at the back of the heel, do some increases to make a cup for your heel, do some decreases to shape the gusset, then join up to work in the round and zoom on down toward your toes.  The whole thing feels amazingly tidy.

I made the things, and I even find myself picking them up and going oooooooh, how the heck does that work?

DSC_1125 copyI made mine in the much beloved and sadly discontinued Caper Aran from String Theory, but the pattern is written so that you can use pretty much any aran, worsted, or even DK weight yarn you like.  You just need to be sure you’re knitting nice and tight so you get a dense, sturdy fabric.  If you go with a lighter yarn they may start to feel a bit more like thick socks than sturdy slippers, but I suspect you’ll love them just as much either way.

DSC_1191 copyI do happen to have one last skein of this exact yarn (which should be more than enough to make a pair of these…I have size 11 feet and I had a fair bit of yarn leftover when I was done) to give away.  If you think it should be yours, just leave a comment telling me what’s the one thing you always pack along on trips to make you feel more at home.  You already know my weaknesses, but I suspect you guys have some interesting things in your suitcases too!

And while I can’t quite manage to yarn to everyone, I can give everyone a discount.  You can use the code SUITCASE to get a dollar the price between now and Friday.  Just put Excursion in your ravelry cart, click on the ‘use a coupon code’ button, and type in the code SUITCASE.  You’ll see the change in price reflected right away.

DSC_1217 copyComments left between now and the end of the day (eastern time) Friday, October 7, 2016 will be entered to win.  I’ll pick a winner, contact them to get their addresses, and arrange to send yarn their way.  Be sure to use a real email address so I can contact you if you’ve won (I won’t do anything with those email addresses besides notify the winner).  If I do email you, I need to hear back from you within 72 hours or I will pick a new winner and contact them.  Sorry, but I can only ship physical prizes to US addresses.

DSC_1201 copy