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Monday, September 03, 2012

It's all about stripes!

Last week I spent a lot of time swatching for new designs for various yarn companies and publications and that will continue this week and probably next week too. As a designer submitting to publications and yarn companies is a continuous job. Ofcourse I can't share any of that but I did do some other knitting too. 

I seem to have a thing about stripes at the moment. Let's look at the evidence.

Exhibit 1:
This is the Silky Camel shawl I cast on for when I got home from Spain then ripped out 3, 4 or was it 5 times. I've forgotten. It's going well now though and I'm enjoying it.
Exhibit 2:
The Lornas Laces Solemate shawl was started in Spain and I have done some knitting on it since I came home but not a huge amount. I've decided on an edging though which I'm happy about.
I'm ready to cast on this little shawl. It's the second sample for the YarnAddict 2012 Mystery KAL (coming in Oct). I'm going to be offering a little twist this year which is why I can't get going with this until the girls are back at school, the house is quiet and I've got some time. I'm hoping that'll happen on Wednesday when the girls go back to school. In the meantime the yarn (which is much, much brighter than the pic) and the beads are waiting patiently on the mantel piece. Oh and I need to free up a set of 4mm circular needles before I can start this too.
 There's been a lot of spinning lately. I finished the second bobbin of the Optim fibre. The pic below is not good (for some reason I don't seem to be able to take good pics today) but the colour is beautiful - silvery blues, a hint of violet, slightly brighter blue. I'm so looking forward to plying this. I'm hoping it'll be as gorgeous as I think it will. It'll hopefully be the first laceweight yarn I've spun.
I've been thinking about what my next spinning project should be for a few days and couldn't decide. I wanted to try fractal spinning. On Saturday I decided to dive into my small spinning basket in the lounge. If I'd gone through my whole spinning stash I'd get distracted and there'd be too much choice.

I really like this merino/bamboo/nylon from Sweet Georgia but I didn't think it'd be ideal for fractal spinning. I'd like to try some of the colour blending techniques from the Craftsy 'Spinning Dyed Fibre' class I took. 
 This merino/silk/stellina (sparkly stuff) has been calling to me from the corner of the room for a while now. The colours are beautiful but I wasn't sure if it was enough variety to make the most of the fractal spinning technique.
 So in the end i chose another Sweet Georgia merino/bamboo/nylon braid in greens, yellows and browns. I started spinning it. This was a bit more challenging than the Optim I spun and the singles were ending up quite a bit thicker. I spun happily on Saturday evening and this was the progress I made.
 Then on Sunday afternoon when I was watching 'Burghley Horse Trials' I just couldn't stop looking at that pretty, sparkly fibre. So I decided to start spinning that too. Pic is slightly blurry but it's so pretty. 
I divided the fibre in half lengthways then started spinning the first half without dividing it any further. If I decide to do fractal spinning, I'll be dividing the second half into thinner strips before I spin those. I haven't quite decided if I'm going to do that yet though. This is spinning up slightly thinner than the merino/bamboo/nylon I spun on Saturday.  I'm trying to spin for an hour every night, usually while I watch La Vuelta (Tour of Spain which is road cycling) highlights.

I better get on with cooking dinner so I can get on with tonight's spinning. Writing about it is making me want to do it.

I did finish a shawl this weekend too which made me very happy as it means I can include it in the 'Beads & Lace Collection'. The patterns for the 'Beads & Lace Collection' is progressing nicely although I'm a bit behind schedule. Four out of the seven patterns have been e-mailed off for first round of tech editing and I'm hoping to schedule the photoshoot next week and then I can start sharing some more details. The designs are all gorgeous, especially this newest shawl. 

Tomorrow, I'll be at the knitting group at Spin A Yarn in Devon tomorrow morning. I'm really looking forward to catching up with all the ladies there, then afterwards I'm meeting a friend for lunch. 

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