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Sunday, January 27, 2013

Going batty!

First, before I talk about spinning and knitting, I've decided to sell my Namaste Monroe bag. Namaste make gorgeous knitting bags which are perfect to use as an everyday bag. This style is similar to lots of 'work bags'  (but the Monroe has lots more pockets than any ohter bag) in the shops at the moment and I love it but it's too big for me. I have neck/back problems (as you probably know if you read my blog regularly) and this bag is sadly not practical for me. You can read the details on the Namaste website.  My bag is the 'Eggplant' colourway. Average retail price in the UK is around £65. I'm selling this bag for £45 o.n.o plus postage. It's only been used a few times and I even have the dust bag. UK first class postage is £5.60, Signed for 1st class - £6.55 and Special Delivery UK £9.75. If you live outside the UK please e-mail me and I'll get a postage quote for you. If you're interested in buying this bag please e-mail me (  IT'S SOLD! 

First one to offer closest to the asking price gets it. If you're the lucky one, I'll send you a Paypal invoice which I ask you to pay within 24 hours please. If it's not paid within 24 hours I'll offer it to the next one.
There's been a lot of spinning going on here in the last week. I finally finished spinning my current project. This is spun very fine and I'm planning to navajo ply it. I'm hoping I'll end up with a heavy laceweight. I'm leaving the bobbin to rest for a few days before I ply it. I'm not looking forward to plying it, there's an awful lot of singles on that bobbin.
 A few days ago, my friend Claire came over for an afternoon of drum carding. Claire is a spinner too. I got out my box of solid coloured fibre and we spent the afternoon playing. I forgot to photograph Claire's batts. she made some beautiful green ones. 

My first one was a blend of 2 different blues made from merino top:
Then I blended some hot pink and purple merino.
 I ended up with 2 batts that where very similar in colour and one that had more purple in it. I didn't weigh any of the fibre before I drum carded it, just did it by eye. Looking at this on Friday morning gave me an idea. I could do some more batts to spin a gradient yarn.
 So I carded one purple batt and one pink batt, one with more purple than pink and one with more pink than purple and here's my final line up. I've already started spinning the purple batt. To preserve the colours I'm planning to navajo ply this. 
 I can't say I love spinning batts. I'm most used to worsted spinning combed top and carded fibre is a bit different. I've never done proper woollen spinning so I'm using my normal worsted technique on this batt and it's not as even as when I spin top but hopefully by the time I've plyed it it'll be fine. I'm still looking at those braids of hand-dyed fibre from my last spinning post and I'm keen to spin some of that too.... We'll see if I manage to be monogamous until I finish these batts. I've got just over 160gr in total.

I've done a lot of knitting this week too. I'm waiting for some yarn to arrive for a new crochet deadline, hopefully it'll be here tomorrow, so I've been trying to finish off some more projects. After getting another skein of Manos Silk Blend Fino on Tuesday I got knitting on the Fino shawl I started in Norway. I had to decide on the edging and went for a beaded picot cast off. I took the pic below before I started the beaded cast off. The shawl is now waiting to be blocked.
A few days ago I charted out a couple of new shawl ideas. I was very tempted to cast one on but because of the crochet deadline and several knitting deadlines in February too, I was a bit hesitant but as I was still waiting for yarn to arrive I finally gave in and cast on. I'm using some Marks & Katten Alpaca/Silk (fingering weight/4ply) I bought in Norway at Christmas. I'm adding some miracle beads in 2 different sizes. I'm deliberately not showing the details of this shawl yet as I'm thinking I may make this a sample for my book proposal. My aim is to knit as much as possible of the lace before the yarn for the crochet deadline arrives tomorrow.
What have you been knitting or spinning this week? Tell me in the comments below.

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