Friday, 29 May 2015

An Inspector Calls

Since my last blog, crafting life had to stop temporarily thanks to the arrival of school inspectors (those who shall not be named!) Since then, I have been trying to make up for lost time!

After many nights left on the side, I completed the shawl made from the blue gradient batts mentioned in my last post. The pattern is Nigella by Rahymah

I then decided to use the first yarn I made from punis off my new blending board. The punis had all sorts of fibre in, hand dyed merino, scarlet silk, sparkle, Coopworth locks, and superfine merino.


I decided to knit a new style of shawl for me, this pattern is called Whirlwind Romance by Nim Teasdale

Since then I have been happily busy washing fleece

This was a particularly smelly fleece from a young female Shetland called Katie - who REALLY needs to change her perfume! Beautifully soft, but quite short staple length, so after trying to comb some of the fibre, I think carding will be the way to go.

I now have quite a nice collection of washed fleeces in pillow cases ready to play with, including Shetland in Moorit and Grey, Castlemilk Moorit, Portland, Jacob and another wonderful Merino x Shetland - with polled Dorset and Ryland on their way.

Finally I have even managed to get back to blending fibres, after wandering around walking the dogs, I was inspired to use the colours of native wild flowers as inspiration (not necessarily ones out now!)

Dog Rose Gradient in merino


Foxglove punis - blend of merino, tussah silk, crab and kid mohair.

My carefree days of fibre fun are drawing to a close again for a little while, I still have more flowers to use as inspiration for gradients and punis (I need to write them down before I forget!) However, Woolfest is near, and this little gem will be coming home with me - a Timbertops!!

Happy Crafting Everyone!


Monday, 4 May 2015

So much fibre... so little time.

I adore fibre - of all descriptions colours and origins. I learned this only a few years ago when I learned that I could buy a spinning wheel and not have to inherit one.

Since that time I have been on a steep learning curve and tried every fibre that I have been able to lay my hands on - with differing amounts of success.

Possibly plying mink with muga silk was not the best idea that I have ever had, but you live and learn!

Now that I may have more time to adventure through the world of fibres, preparation, dying, spinning and knitting I hope that you may enjoy sharing the journey. Recently I have decided to work out EXACTLY how to use my drum carder to make what I want ( and not what it wants) and made some gradient batts.

They spun up really easily into a heavy laceweight yarn, which I am at the moment knitting into a beaded crescent shaped shawl.

For a change I am knitting the shawl from the darker shades to the lighter. At the moment I am on row 50/64 of the lace ... photo's will follow in another blog.

Finally my new adventures have just started. FLEECE. I have always worked from prepared fibres before now. Then a friend gave me some washed Clun Forest fleece to play with. I had a ball! I flick carded locks to my hearts content and made some lovely springy, soft 4 ply yarn.

My mission now to prepare fibres from raw fleece. The spin dryer has been obtained - as have 6 buckets. I have washed and dried 1 Portland fleece, 2 Ouessant fleeces and 1 Shetland merino cross fleece (so soft and wonderful). I have a llanwenog next in line and a Shetland fleece in the post on its way. As I said, so much fibre to play with so little time....

Shetland merino cross - raw lock, washed fleece, combed 'nests'