Thursday, May 29, 2008

My Market Schedule

For interested locals, here are the dates I'll be at the Coquitlam Farmer's Market this season.

June 8, 29;
July 20;
August 10, 24;
September 14; and
October 5, 26.

I usually bring all yarn but just some of the available fiber. If you ever see anything in my Etsy shop that you want me to be sure to bring, just let me know the day before.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Creative Process

So here's a little collage that I just spent way too much time making. It would have taken less time, except that I really don't know what I'm doing with Photoshop, so using it involves a lot of trial and error. I'm a little better with InDesign, which in hindsight is probably what I should have used...but live and learn.

Anyway, this photo collage shows a creative process, just for those of you who are curious to see the steps. It starts with a picture, a colour combo that I found compelling. Muted red, cherry red, black, and hints of grey. I dyed the roving in these colours, taking care to put the black in such a way that it would blend with the adjacent colours, creating a streakiness rather than a solid block of colour -- just like the tie. You can see that somewhat in the bobbin of singles that is pictured. Then, plying blends the colours further, and we have yarn!

I'm not sure whether I'll be keeping this skein for myself or selling it. I'm going to look at it and pet it for awhile. I may dye more roving in this colourway on Friday; we'll see.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Buy Local

Just a quick note to remind folks that I will be at the Coquitlam Farmer's Market tomorrow. I have a huge variety of my yarn, so if you want to see everything I have all at once, the Market is the place to do that.

I have less fiber than I'd like though. My sales this month have been overwhelming -- which is great! -- so my stock is low. I have 18 lbs of BFL on order that will likely arrive in time for me to dye on Friday, so expect new stuff to start being available as of May 26th.

I have returned to making sock yarn. I took a long break from doing that, because I just wasn't satisfied with what I was producing -- it didn't match the picture in my mind. I've been learning tons from my spinning class though, and the other day I produced a 165 gram skein of DK weight yarn that makes me really happy. It's here, if you want to see. I used a worsted drawing technique, fresh fiber, low tension, and very even plying -- I'm very happy with the results. Happy enough that I might, just might, make more.

If you're in the GVA, come visit me tomorrow!

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Preschooler Surprise

I finished the Baby Surprise Jacket, and I'm thrilled with it. I just followed the standard EZ pattern, but with a much larger-gauge yarn than she suggests. If you do this yarn in the suggested worsted weight yarn (I think worsted...maybe smaller), you get a jacket for a baby. If you do it in my yarn, which is an Aran weight, you get this:

That's my sizeable 3 year old, who usually wears a 4T.

The jacket is proportioned for a baby, hence the short arms. I could pick up stitches along the sleeves and lengthen them, but I rather like the short sleeve. The number of handknit sweaters I end up washing because they got a little food or paint just on the edge of the sleeves is large. Maybe this will cut down a bit on the washing -- dare to dream.

Specifics: I knit this particular jacket from 5 skeins of my own soft-spun yarn. I used a 5mm needle, but I'm a really loose knitter, so a more typical knitter may wish to use a 6 or 6.5mm needle. I had very little of those skeins left over when the project was done. If you wanted to lengthen the sleeves, you'd want 6 skeins. Garter stitch is lovely, but it does tend to eat yarn. Still, the resulting fabric is so squooshy and yum, I think the yarn-consumption is worth it.

The photo shoot was a bit of a challenge. You know how it is. The second your small child senses that you *really* want her to try something on, that is the one time she absolutely will not do it. And if they do it, they will run away from the camera when you pull that out and ask for just one picture.

Here is my daughter 'hiding' from the camera.

Tomorrow is Got Craft, and I have the usual pre-show jitters. I'm afraid I won't have enough stuff, I'm afraid no one will buy anything, I'm afraid I'll have not enough breakfast and too much coffee and be a manic mess whenever I try to talk to anyone, prompting the public at large to start referring to me as "that insane yarn lady." (I'm pretending that they don't already.)

At least I have a ride. My car broke down on Wednesday, and the garage I like can't look at it until Monday...and how will I get downtown with all my stuff you ask? Fortunately, the Skytrain is not involved, as amusing as it would be to carry 8 garbage bags full of wool on public transit. No, instead, the lovely and generous Amanda of Ebbandflo Designs, a vendor at Got Craft who just happens to live near me, will be giving me a lift. Me and my giant bags of wool. Fortunately, she sells jewellery which is small.

I am so buying her lunch.