Archives for posts with tag: Spinning

Fact: I’m way overdue on this post.

Fact: I’m way overdue on lots of other things (see my ever increasing library fine).

Fact: I’m dealing with it by consuming large amounts of beer and holiday cookies.

Fact: I’m not drinking and blogging… much.

There was a reason why I signed up for this retreat again.  And now that it’s said and done, I can add another reason why I’ll probably do it again: Spinning pretty much rules; Judith McKenzie pretty much rules.  This retreat was all about color, how we view it, how we use it, which ones we love, which ones we hate, and even learning how to like the ones we hate.  I still dislike pink, but that’s not for lack of trying.

Stephanie got us designing and charting fair isle.  She taught us about hues and values and how to put colors together in a sensible fashion.  Tina, the color genius, got us to sort of embrace our most hated color by using it as a base in at least one of our skeins.  Turns out pink isn’t so bad when you combine it with other colors.  And Judith showed us how to make batts on drum carders and how to combine colors when we spin.  My first attempt at plying at home before the retreat produced some really ugly shit.  But I swear, there’s something about spinning and plying in the presence of Judith.  All of a sudden your skills transcend into another dimension and you start churning out boucle and other amazing yarns.  Also, I’d be lying if I said that I wasn’t totally excited that she touched my wheel.  Yup.  I said it.  Well, at least I didn’t stutter and act all crazy fan girl like I did last time…maybe.

It’s hard to convey in words what it feels like to be around so many like-minded people.  The weekend goes by so fast, too, that it’s hard to even register half the things that are going on.  Maybe it gets easier the more you go, but I can’t imagine that it does.

I thought I had taken more pictures, but turns out I didn’t.  I posted the rest of them on my flickr page.  The photo of me dyeing was taken by Tamara (who if you remember, gifted me some luscious silk at the last retreat).  She was also a more diligent photographer and you can see more retreat photos from her here.

You know when you haven’t seen someone in a really long time and they ask you what you’ve been up to, and even though you’ve been up to a whole lot of crazy and fun things, you just say, “nothing much”?  I’m going to try my hardest not to do that to you right now, even though I really want to because it’s easier that way.  But who wants to read a blog that says nothing of interest?  I wouldn’t.  So here we go!

As if my knitting wasn’t already super time consuming, I decided I needed a new hobby (or rather an extension of my fiber hobby) so I learned how to spin on a drop spindle and on a spinning wheel.

I think I prefer the spinning wheel over the spindle, even though the spindle is super cheap and portable.  There’s something about the mechanics of a wheel and the sound it makes as you’re treadling that makes me happy.  Plus the fact that it’s less fiddly and more productive than a spindle is kind of a bonus.

Now I just need to find a generous (read: wealthy) person to donate to the “Spinning Wheel for Freshy” fund bucket.  Then my life will be complete.  And my 500 sq ft apartment very full.  But we must all make sacrifices for the things we love.

Have you ever seen sheep get sheared?  I did.  It was exciting and smelly.  But a weird kind of smelly.  The kind that reminds you of spring fairs and petting zoos.

I may or may not have come home with a bag of raw, dirty, smelly fleece.  It may or may not still be in the bag waiting to be cleaned in my tiny 500 sq ft apartment that doesn’t have a spinning wheel in it…yet.  Come to think of it, I think I’m going to host a party.  A fleece cleaning and carding party.  You are all invited!  Bring your fleece cleaning party hat!

I learned how to knit with Mawata, which is a fancy word for silk “hankies” that are made from the cocoon of a silk worm.  I’m making a little something secret with it.

I decided that I didn’t like my day job enough to be there 40 hrs a week, so I dropped down to part-time.  I feel like a better, happier version of myself.  Plus, it allowed me to apply for a position at my local yarn store.  Which I did and now I work there.  Working in a yarn store is so much different than the other dreaded place of employment, because it’s warm and bright and full of soft yarn and happy people.  It’s also torture because I’m surrounded by so many lovely things that don’t belong to me and it’s all I can do to not spend every paycheck buying more yarn.

This last weekend, I spent 3 days surrounded by the most amazing knitters and crafters and fiber lovers at Port Ludlow, where we learned all about and knit with luxury (read: muscox, bison, angora, vicuna…to name a few) fibers, dyed yarn, created gourmet meals for the class, drank lots of wine, and played with silk.  Not to mention the giant bathtub and fireplace in every room.  I might have gone a little fan girl over Stephanie (aka the Yarn Harlot) and Tina of Blue Moon Fiber Arts, but I think they’re used to it.  And even though she probably says it to everyone, Stephanie said that they really liked me and hoped to see me again, and I proceeded to blush and stutter a lot and posed awkwardly for a photo.  I’m so cool.  But more on that tomorrow.

What have you been up to lately?

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