Saturday, April 22, 2006


As promised, here's what I've bought this week. I have a sneaking suspicion that Daisy is going to be disappointed...

The first virtual shop to be visited was Amazon. Three sock books found their way to my home. I've wanted the Charlene Schurch and Nancy Bush books for a while now. The Spin-Off Socks book was a bit of an impulse buy but well worth it seeing as I want to spin my own sock yarn.

Next, my keyboard took me on a trip to Texere. The things that fell into my basket here are all 'to be dyed' items. Wool/Viscose tops, Mohair tops, Cotton slivers and a 'Dyer's Delight' pack of animal fibres - 3m each of 15 different yarns. I'll need to get some fibre reactive dyes for the cotton as I only have acid dyes at the moment. How sad more shopping will be required (after pay day, of course!)

Also from Texere, a 400gm cone of 4ply 100% Merino lambswool for, ermmmm, socks. There was actually a reason for this purchase... Dye-o-rama! This yarn is soooooo lovely and soft and, oops!, I got far more than I needed so there are a few pairs of socks in that cone for me.

Finally, this morning Mum and I went shopping to buy her some embroidery materials she needs and we both also bought some yarn. I was relatively restrained and only got two balls of Jaeger Matchmaker Merino 4ply to make the Denmark socks from Knitting on the Road and some 3mm, 3.25mm and 3.5mm dpns - well, just because! The Jaeger is a sage green colour - one of my favourites.

So, now off to play! :-)

Friday, April 21, 2006

Dye-o-rama Signup

I've done it!

Run, don't walk over to Scout's blog and sign-up for a little bit of sock-dyeing-exchange-heaven. :-)

Sign-ups close at about midnight Saturday 22nd April UK time. So don't miss out!

I've been spending. Pics tomorrow.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Sixth Sense Socks Finished

I've been a bit of a one trick pony this weekend and have done very little other than knit these and so, they are finished. I blogged about the colours and yarn here.

Sorry this is short, shiny and not very interesting but I think I may be coming down with a cold or something. I think I'm going to get a coffee and crawl back into bed with Viggo Mortensen. (Sadly he is only on DVD and not here in the flesh. That would make me feel better!)

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Six Sox Sixth Sense Socks

Phew! Try saying that fast!

This is the latest sock in the Six Sox KAL and is called Sixth Sense. It's quite a simple pattern made jazzy by the garter stitch on the toe, heel and top of the leg. The yarn is the Opal dye-your-own I dyed a while ago with Kool Aid. The flavours I used were Ice Blue Raspberry, Arctic Green Apple and Lemonade. The green is pooling but that doesn't bother me but I thought it would! I think if the colours were more vivid it could quite possibly drive me nuts! The colours are very spring-like.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Dye-o-rama Swap

Hmmmmm... second post in a day - I must be on holiday!

A new swap to join. It's a dyeing swap and the first round will be sock yarn so right up my street then. :-)

Head on over to Scout's blog to check out the details.

Spinning And Dyeing

I've been playing with the new Kemtex dyes I got a couple of weeks ago.

The first batch, 50 gms of Wensleydale roving, was rainbow dyed using the method where you sprinkle the dye powder over the wet wool in the dye pot. I used blue and jade. This is the first time I've used this method and I think I could have used more dye. It's very pretty though and reminds me of the colour of the sea from my holiday in Vanuatu. Vanuatu is a country made up of about 80 islands in the South Pacific and, like a true tropical island paradise, is surrounded by turquoise-coloured sea. Beautiful!

Second is 50 gms of Blue Faced Leicester roving dyed in the leftover dye pot from the Wensleydale. Another gorgeous colour - quite a pastel aqua.

Last is a batch that I steamed using 100gms of Blue Faced Leicester and a syringe to squirt the dye stock (yellow, red, blue, jade) on the wetted roving, smooshed it around bit to make sure the colours spread all through. I then wrapped it in cling film and steamed for 30 minutes. The colours are quite clown-like but I will reserve judgement until I spin it because I know how much the actual spinning can blend the colours.

I've been a bit Blue Peter-ish with one of my spindles too. I've converted it to a top whorl spindle. It spins well although using a top whorl has taken a bit of getting used to. Here is a final pic of the Wensleydale being spun on it.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Thoughts On Afterthoughts

First, thanks to everyone for their suggestions on how I can minimise my costs for going to Woolfest. Fear not - Cinders will go to the ball even if she has to walk there and sleep under a hedge!

I've finished the Flamingo socks. You may remember I wasn't overly taken with them when I first started. Well, in true self-striping fashion, they've grown on me and I love them! Shame they're not for me but for my friend Meg who lives in Australia where it is rapidly heading towards winter. I think I'll be making a pair of these for myself too.

Stats for the interested. Opal Rainforest Flamingo knitted magic loop, top down on a 2.5mm Addi circ with an afterthought heel. I used dpns to knit the heel because I thought it'd be hard to do the heel by magic loop. Don't ask me why I thought this seeing as it is done exactly the same as the toes which were done, you guessed it, magic loop.

I like the afterthought heels and though picking up the stitches was a pain the rear I'll definitely be doing heels this way again. I think this is probably the best heel method for self striping yarns because there's no interruption to the striping pattern at all. Your eyes don't deceive you - I did try to keep the striping from the sock correct on the heel. Pretty damn close if I do say so myself.

I've already started another pair - the April/May Six Socks KAL pattern called Sixth Sense Socks. Pics when I have some progress worth shouting about. Tomorrow there will be some dyeing and spinning pics.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Ho Hum

I'm a bit depressed - I've just being working out prices to go to Woolfest. The train fare is £73.30 and the only hotel room I've found in Cockermouth (I don't drive so I need to be within walking distance) has a 'basic' single room at £48.00 per night. That is a lot of cash before I even think about workshops and spendies so I'm not sure if I'll be going.


***Edit - there is a Youth Hostel in Cockermouth and I'm a doofus! Still sighing over the train fare though...***

Saturday, April 08, 2006


I've finished! It seemed to take forever to do the leg of the second sock. I suppose I hadn't yet turned the heel last week when I was knitting on the train to the NEC but I've had to really force myself to keep knitting these this week as I've had a real bad case of 'want-to-start-something-new-itis'.

Stats for the interested. Opal Uni colour #18, knitted on 2.5mm bamboo dpns. The pattern is my own knitted toe up with a short row toe, heel flap and gusset, and a lacy rib pattern on the leg. At the top of the leg I knitted into the front and back of each stitch to give a wavy top and to make sure the cast off wasn't too tight! Okay so I cheated - want to make something of it? :-P

Now they are going to have a little lavender scented bath and then I'll have to think about how I'm going to wrap them up so they look nice and pretty for my pal.