Saturday, 14 August 2010

Gifts and Prizes

I have been very lucky recently. I got an amazing Tour de Fleece random prize from Hello Yarn, look:
Falklands wool 'We're All Winners', a card and a lovely hand-bound notebook.

And a beautiful gift from Leslie:
A hand-knitted silk lace scarf, just beyond words.

And I finally got to use the TLE gift voucher I got for my birthday (in March!). I had been waiting for them to receive TML, and here it is:I got 4 skeins of Lapis, a colourway I had been after for some time. Maybe I'll make a Hay Cardigan with it?

Tuesday, 3 August 2010

KnitNation and recent FOs

I thought it was about time I started a blog. And there's no better place to start than with KnitNation. What a fabulous couple of days I had! It was so nice to put faces to a few names, be surrounded by like-minded people, get lots of inspiration, not to mention the stash enhancements and the amount I learnt.

I did two workshops: 'Popular Wheel Mechanics' and 'To Spin a Fine Thread', both with Judith Mackenzie McCuin. What a fabulous teacher! I learnt so much. We also played with some lovely fibres: BFL/silk, cashmere/silk, yak, pygora, cotton, merino and rambouillet. I managed to spin as thin as 2-ply sewing machine thread, but struggled a bit with the thicker weights, so more practice is needed!

Judith was really generous, in spirit and with information, good humoured and funny. It was a joy to be in her company and I hope I get to do more with her. We learnt about twist angles and how they affect the thickness of the yarn, without having to change the pulley or how fast you treadle and daft.

Oh, must not forget the Marketplace! So overwhelming! I was so busy looking and shopping that I didn't take any pictures. The busiest stall was by far Wollmeise, and they had loads. It was quite hard choosing colours as there was so much choice and so many people. I think I did quite well and only got one skein of 100% and one of lace (at last, yay!)

Anyway, here's what I got:

Now, onto different matters: I have recently finished test-knitting Veera's gorgeous Celery. It all looked great up until I blocked it. It stretched masses and is now a bit too big :( This has most definitely taught me to block my swatches. I still like it though, but I'm looking forward to making another, closer fitting one.

I have also completed my first Tour de Fleece! It was great fun and I produced some nice yarns. It was a great way to get used to my new wheel. I used up some Spunky Club Shetland, Hello Yarn thrums and Pigeonroof Studios South African Fine:

Not a lot of yarns, but I was away on holiday and hurt my neck half-way, so I think I did ok. I struck mega-lucky and won a fabulous prize: some Hello Yarn fibre and a book hand-bound by njstacie. Really looking forward to getting those!