Wednesday, December 04, 2013

Goings on about home...

Hi, Knitters,
Well, what a busy last few days. I can tell everyone is back to work today in the knitting world by the number of emails in my inbox. I hope you all had a wonderful weekend. It was bustling and fantastic around my house.

First things first, the winner of the Bunny Love Full Kit from Little Skein is..... siberiancat (rav id) or Penny! Congratulations to Penny. I have already contacted Penny on Ravelry.

Now for an unexpected surprise, Anne Vally of Little Skein contacted me yesterday to let me know that the kit has been a huge hit. Laura of Gynx Yarn is already back dyeing up more self-striping and semi-solid yarn so Anne can make more kits for her shop. To celebrate the popularity of the kit she asked if I would select 5 more winners to receive a set of the Wild Rabbits Stitch Markers from her shop! I couldn't say no to that so here are 5 more winners by Rav ID:

I am passing on the winners to Anne to contact you directly through Ravelry so keep your eye out for a message! Anne will need your mailing addresses to send you your new stitch markers. Yay!

The pattern for the Bunny Love adorable seamless toy will be available for individual download in January 2014 on my Ravelry Pattern Shop. If you don't want the kit I recommend you order a skein of the beautiful Gynx yarn self-striping or semi-solid. It is such a treat and makes an adorable one-of-a-kind toy. I don't know how long supplies will last on the yarn. Thank you to Anne for everything!

Now on with the blog post for today.

On Friday I received a package from JoAnna of the Knit Spin Farm podcast. I wasn't sure what was inside but with all of the action going on in my house I set the unopened package in my studio so I could quietly open it later. Well, that night I couldn't sleep. I finally decided just to get up and start my day, no more wasting time just thinking about sleep. It was so early and dark. I got up and made a cup of coffee, walked into my studio and remembered the package from JoAnna. My house was so full, with all four kids home, and happy and quiet so I was already feeling content but when I opened the envelope to see the most gorgeous handmade spinning batt from JoAnna it took my breath away. 

I don't even have a photo of the batt for you because right then and there I decided to spin up this delicious little treat of blended fiber. I literally sat down in those wee hours of the morning in my quiet little house and spun up this batt filled with cormo, silk, silk noil, southdown and merino. JoAnna sent along a handwritten note explaining that she made the batt with my nature photos in her mind for inspiration. The batt is called Tree Lichen and it was incredibly light and sweet. The colors are so soothing, sort of comforting. 

The fiber ran through my fingers like butter. I felt like I was spinning air because it was so light and fluffy. It honestly was one of the most pleasant spinning experiences I have had. There was no tugging or drafting to be done. I love the silk noils, they are like little tidbits of texture. I didn't want to lose any of the yardage from JoAnna's batt so I quickly spun up some natural merino to ply with the Tree Lichen. In the end I got 222 yards of a dk to worsted weight. 

The result is a yarn that is like spun candy. It really is the sweetest hank of yarn ever. The skein you see above in the photo is so light and fluffy and bouncy. It is one of my favorites because not only was the fiber wonderful, I was feeling content and happy in my full post-holiday house while I was spinning, and it was a gift from a talented young woman. It's a win.

Fortunately for all of you spinners out there JoAnna is going to start selling her batts on her Etsy shop!

Here are all of the JoAnna related links for you:

Knit Spin Farm Podcast (I never miss an episode!)

Oh my gosh, she has project bags up (she doesn't post these very often)! I have one of her little bags and it is so wonderful. I have to get another. I am not sure when she is going to start selling her batts but you could favorite the shop and also you could contact JoAnna to find out more. I highly recommend her bags and the batts for spinning and her podcast.

I have the spinning bug as of late. I felt like I was spinning the skein you see above in the photo for forever. I did a traditional 3-ply with the intent to knit socks with the finished yarn. It took me so long, months I think. The end result is just gorgeous. The braid of fiber was from Into the Whirled, a very popular indie dyer. The color is pretty impressive. There are a couple of shades of vibrant purples, a buttery light yellow and a medium shade of brown. The colorway is called Chromatic Composition and it is 100% Polwarth. 

I purchased the braid at The Loopy Ewe. It was amazing to spin, so much fun. I ended up with 376 yards of a fingering weight which is plenty to do a pair of handspun socks. Plan complete!

The cowl in the photo above is another long on the needles project (not tooth but needles, but it was long on the tooth, too). I started the cowl way last spring for Peachy but when it got warm outside I set it down for the summer. Peachy has been on my case, as deserved, to finish it up now that it is cold again. I dragged it around with me over the holiday weekend and sure enough I finished. She loves it so much and has already worn it to school.

Here are the links for the cowl:
Quince & Co Puffin yarn (3 skeins to make the cowl ~ under $30! ~ the perfect gift) The cowl in the photo is in the Twig colorway.
US size 13 needles, 32-inch circs

I have to tell you that Miss Molly has made two of the Gaptastic Cowls using three skeins of Quince & Co Puffin. And now Peachy is knitting her own Gaptastic Cowl with three skeins of Puffin in Egret. The Egret is so creamy and light. She has already finished one skein and it is going to be beautiful. I love seeing her knit, it doesn't happen often.

The Quince & Co Puffin gets incredibly soft after a soak and a good blocking. 

This is the perfect quick gift for teens and college age girls if you are stumped. At just under $30 for the Quince Puffin it is a steal. On US 13s you can whip this up fairly quickly for a large cowl, that is if you don't put it down like I did.

Oh, and we got our Christmas tree at the tree farm. It is a winner of a tree. We decorated it while everyone was home on Saturday night. It was really fun. We listened to Christmas music and there was a lot of laughter and reminiscing going on. There is something really amazing about having older kids. Sometimes I just look at them and I can't believe what interesting young people they have become, all completely different but all so tied together. There is a lot of love between them and us.

It is good.

My son is wearing the Surefire Hat ~ because I know I'll get asked.

My oldest son turned 22 years old on Thanksgiving Day. The whole extended family was at our house for the holiday so we put some candles in a pumpkin pie and sang to him while my niece played the birthday song on my mom's piano. It was very sweet and he is loved. He loves the handknit socks I knit for him as a gift and he put them right on and wore them the rest of the day. They fit perfectly. I also knit him the Dustland Hat with Lorna's Laces Worsted. I gave it to him a little early and he has worn it constantly. A good match, the yarn, pattern and recipient.

Click here for sock details.

Click here to see a photo of my little guy and me 22 years ago.

Click here to see the sock on his foot!

Click here to see my son in his Dustland Hat!

This is what my path has been looking like as of late. Not much snow yet and a lot of gold in the prairie. It is pretty, good winter-y colors to feast my eyes on while I walk or run.

Okay, to finish out the day I have some fun new knitting podcasts for listening and watching to recommend! I am really enjoying all of these new podcasts so don't miss out ~ subscribe and add them to your iTunes!  
Here are the links:

And one not so new podcast but one I forgot on my previous lists of podcasts: 
Singlehandedknits with the lovely Mel!

Have a great day! I hope my RSS feed works this time, fingers are crossed. I'll be back soon with more.
best, susie


Jennie Kaderabek said...

What a fun surprise this morning! Exciting for my new stitch markers!
I found a few new podcasts, too!

Amanda said...

I won stitch markers! Wow! Thanks so much--I love to read your beautiful blog.

Sanja T said...

Such a peaceful view from your home. They yarns look incredible, especially the purple blend. I will have too attempt that cowl. Looks so nice.

Love of Cuteness - Giveaway

deafelis said...

That purple is so, so, SO gorgeous! Also, please thank your publisher for putting your books on sale for the Kindle. I bought four of them. Spud & Chloe at the Farm looks so much nicer/prettier in hardcover, so I'll buy that as a regular book soon. :D

Kepanie said...

Great, wooly eye candy in this post.

Lisa McGehee said...

I love the story of the surprise you were given through your late night / early morning spinning. Thanks for the links to the new podcasts too.

Anonymous said...

I LOVE LOVE the candy cane!! Would you mind sharing how you do it?


Juniper Grace said...

wait... what just happened here? did you just give me a shout out on your blog!? FOR REALS? >.<

Eims Eims said...

Thanks for the list of recommended podcasts, I've been enjoying Homespun too. And I have to admit, I enjoyed your own podcast when you posted it recently ;) Any plans for future videos?

cathy said...

Somehow I missed this post Wednesday, and just stopped by today, only to find I won a set of those sweet rabbit stitch markers! What a thrill! Thank you Susan and Anne!

Also enjoyed looking at the pretty handspun skeins. The purple one is just scrumptious. :)

-- Cathy (yarnstruck)