Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Spinning and Dyeing

Oh Boy! One of my fav knitting websites has in the Spring issue lots of stuff about spinning, spindles and wheels ..and -wow-dyeing wool for spinning! Which is a current focus of mine : how to simplify the process of permanent dyeing of wool. This webpage from is the best yet.

I and also seen a few other interesting techniques, like using colored tissue paper; a French website has a good overview of the process. I tried it and have come to the conclusion that the dyes used in France must be more “runny” but I did mange to get a raspberry, red, other pinks and purple roving done- all rather more pastel than I prefer. Just in case you are curious:

I used a free online translation service and it was very funny to interpret, their rendition. Anyway- color is cool!

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Knitting World Cup

Did you join the Knitting Olympics?

Now you can join the Knitting World Cup!
Cast on : 9th June 2006 18:00 (Central European Time)
Finish by: final whistle 21:30 (CET) on 9th July 2006

Competition Rules:

1. Choose any project you will find a challenge.
2. You must complete it within the time frame.
3. No casting on before kick off
4. Finish before final whistle of the final match
5. “Training” sessions of tension squares are allowed prior to kick off.

Football(as in soccor) widows and knitting fiends get your team (i.e. project) selected now.

To join, email the yarn monkey and you'll be added to the teams list.

There will be a prize draw from the winners for some stichin' and bitchin' swag.

Saturday, May 06, 2006

Continental Knitting

Today was a very inspirational day. The machine knitting guild folks did a fashion show and I saw some very nicely done items, creativity galore! A new member arrived today- the second man now in the guild. He goes to a class many of us attend- the daytime one of the night class I attend (same teacher) on Monday nights, when I can. Most Mondays.

The other fellow will soon be the President of the Guild! Very focussed and organized. He is also teaching himself to handknit. I had given him the heads up that I would be more than willing to help with tips there. He was so happy to show me his first efforts, apparently he went to the web and studied and started from there. I gave him the tip about slipping the first stitch to create an even edge.

I love the continental(aka German) knitting style (versus “throwing”) and commented on this when he watched me cast on and start knitting; he noticed my method was different than most others around. He tried both and wants to learn continental! Wo-hoo. My buddy likes the English (aka throwing) style (there are others too). I suppose the way you learn is the way you are most comfortable with. Years ago, I went to a HK Guild and the first thing they told me was- we need you to do Continental style of knitting, to be most efficient and “hand friendly”. No biggie- I was already there. Others in the guild told me of their struggle to “switch” but that they DID then see the merit.

Kinda reminds me of another area....I use a Mac! ......Oh...nevermind...we don’t want to go there. In my other “hobby life” I am a Macintosh User Group leader....Apple Ambassador is my title. Have held most positions including Pres forever...I also was given title of Queenie....guess they want to keep me around forever! Somebody has to do it- and it has been me...for way too long but I still enjoy the club.

Hope everyone is enjoying the Spring Weather! Sun at last. Tomorrow is gardening day for me! Parsnip seeds, beans, peas, carrots,beets more onions basil and some starts of greens will be going in. Still have plenty of chard- onions- strawberries-various flowers- and herbs around. Hot weather stuff like squash, tomatoes and peppers can wait a bit still. Have weeded and composted - now to plant!

About Me

Marin County, California, United States
I work for 2 non-profits in Marin County CA (near SF) that serve the Developmentally Delayed. I was introduced to weaving and knitting at a very young age. Over the years I have always had knitting on hand. There was a time where I was severely chastised for being so old fashioned, so it is great to see the upsurge in the home arts now going on! I have expanded into machine knitting; fortunately there is a great Guild nearby that has really been great. Spinning Fibers is a new thrust as well, and felting has creeped in too. If only I had more time...