So. Many. Pretties.

Tour de Fleece 2018 finished a little less than 2 weeks ago, so I suppose I could be farther behind in sharing my final spins. Alas, I can share them in sparse detail because I’ve yet to properly measure and label them (of course), but I can wait no longer! Today is the day!

Let’s dive right in!

As a co-captain of Team Three Waters Farm, I spun exclusively Three Waters Farm fibers during the TdF. It seems appropriate that I first share the special Tour de Fleece inspired colorway and its companion tonal, both on Falkland and both spun as stand alone singles.

Racing Through Puddles…

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And Race Splash…

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Oh, humor me with a couple detail shots….

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I think this one is just stunning!

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And this is just a lovely thunderstorm-y blue.

I plied my Flying Home singles which I’d spun just before the start of the Tour de Fleece…

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I chain-plied this 100% Corriedale and am considering using it for socks, so I plied with a higher twist for good measure.

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The camera just does not do this one justice. It’s just a true beauty.

The bulk of my spinning was 2-ply worsted weight silk blend yarns destined, hopefully, for a Vivid blanket.

There was Mighty Incentive…

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This on the Merino/Superwash Merino/Tussah Silk 40/40/20 base.

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And then Living Color…

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On a Polwarth/Tussah Silk 60/40 base.

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And then there was Summer Heat…

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Again, on that lush Merino/Superwash Merino/Tussah Silk 40/40/20 base.

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I want to say this one is my favorite with those pops of cool turquoise, but honestly, then I turn to the next color and think the same thing. So “favorite” is meaningless in this group!

Next was Cave at Hug Point…

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This one is on the delicious BFL/Silk 75/25 base. I have a serious infatuation with spinning this base.

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And then there was Reversal…

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This one I got from a destash and is on a Merino/Tussah Silk 80/20 base.

And the last of this group, Gilded Complements…

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This Polwarth/Silk 85/15 one was very stunning ever step of the way…

img_2276 And did not disappoint in the final yarn at all, of course

As I said, these are all in the worsted weight realm. They aren’t exactly identical, of course — I’m not that skilled, but I did use my control card religiously throughout each spin. I believe they’ll be close enough to work together for the blanket with only minor adjustments on my part. I’ve got a long way to go before I have the colorway variety I’m seeking, so I’ll just have to keep it up!

And finally, my July Top of the Month Club, Shade Tree Revival…

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This is on a 100% BFL base and I chain-plied it, thinking that one day they might make some funky socks.

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This turned out a smidge heavier than I’d have liked, but I was kind of winging the singles so the fact that it didn’t turn out exactly as I’d hoped is not really a surprise. I’ll adjust my gauge and it’ll knit up just fine. I’m not worried. In fact, I’m quite pleased with how it turned out.

I still have these 4oz of Still Water that I spun the singles for that are still waiting… ahem… to be wound off the bobbins…

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Oh, I’ll get there one of these days!

I’m not sure my yardage total, but counting the Flying Home plying and the Still Water singles as a full 4oz spin (because, you know, for the work involved that’s accurate), that’s a full 40oz spun during Tour de Fleece 2018! It’s not a record for me, but it’s not half bad!

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So. Many. Pretties.

Maybe the real reason I’ve been putting off posting this is it’s given me an excuse to keep this basket of beauties on my desk. Alas, they’ll be moved to my handspun shelf to make room for other work. Let’s hope there’s room over there!

 

Three Fresh Skeins

It seems that I’ve been down to one bigger post a week here lately. Life’s normally hectic, especially in spring, but Mr Knitting Sarah’s schedule did a little shift this month, too. It’s nothing major, but since our family schedule more or less revolves around his and my blogging time gets put together piecemeal in between all the other things in our life, it’s felt like a bit of a scramble to adjust the little pieces of time I carve out for this space. I’m doing my best to make the time and I’ll continue to add a little more than I usually would into each of my posts until I’m back to some sort of schedule. For now though, hang with me as I ride this wave of low-level discombobulation. I’m still creating at a good clip, my screen time has just been a bit limited.

Today, though, I’ve finally got some new handspun yarn to share with you! Three fun skeins of worsted weight 2-ply yarn from 2 new-to-me dyers!

First up, at the end of last year, I picked up 2 braids from Wound Up Fiber Arts during an end of the year or new year’s promotion (I’m not sure which). I’d seen these fibers popping up in my Instagram feed and with their bright colors and I thought I would give the shop a whirl. The first I tried is a colorway named “All Business” on a Superwash Targhee base.img_0015

I pre-drafted the braid because it was a little stickier than I prefer to spin right out of the braid. This is true of probably 40% of the fiber I spin (and all the fibers in this post), so that really was no big thing in my eyes. One downside, however, is the fiber did bleed onto my hands, turning them blue while I spun. As far as bleeding goes, this was definitely not the worst I’ve seen, but I don’t ever really want to see it happen, you know?  The skein bled further in the wet finishing I did with it, but did not impact the colors in the fiber that I could tell which was good.

I’ll admit that the bleeding was a little disappointing to me, but after washing and drying the skein I am still pretty happy with the results…

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It’s bright and cheerful, for sure. I’m guessing about 180-200 yards of worsted weight yarn. It’ll be a nice, colorful hat for my daughter to steal someday.

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I did reach out to Trisha, the dyer behind Wound Up Fiber Arts, just as a courtesy to let her know of my experience with the bleeding. I work with enough dyers to know 9 times out of 10 they would rather know than not know when something isn’t quite right, so they can make adjustments to their process if necessary. I received a nice note and even though I did not request any action from her, she did refund me the money for this braid which I thought was kind.

The second braid I spun from her was called Flutter-by on Superwash Merino and I’m happy to say there was no bleeding on with this one!

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It’s fun to spin new dyers because they all generally share and interpret color a little differently and this spin really exemplified that for me.

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The color combinations were new and unpredictable to my eyes and even though I had concerns in singles form how it would ply up, I think it’s a really fun skein. This one is a little less airy than the Superwash Targhee and much softer thanks to the properties of the Merino wool versus the Targhee. It’s another of those 180-200 yard worsted weight spins, maybe a little lighter weight than the first and will — again — make a lovely hat which my daughter may steal. The pink is limited in it, though, so I may get to keep it.

And last, but not least, a OOAK braid from On The Round

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This dyer came highly recommended from a spinning friend in the Friends of Knitting Sarah Ravelry group and I’d been meaning to give her fibers a try for a while.

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The colors are subtle and understated, like a whisper. It’s a dainty little skein that I feel I need to cradle gently lest I spook these slumbering colors. Again, it’s in the 180-200 yard range of worsted weight yarn. And — like the other two skeins — will mostly likely be turned into a hat during some mad hat knitting binge in the future. That’s totally a thing for me, is it for you, too?

And there you have it! Three fresh, worsted weight 2-ply skeins from 2 new-to-me dyers. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I really do love a quick and easy 2-ply worsted spin. (or three). They are such a great way to try new dyers without a huge time investment and some pretty near-instant gratification results. What fun, right?! Believe it or not, there are 2 more skeins of handspun, a sweater, and a pair of socks all on the drying rack at the moment. Lots to share as soon as I can sneak the time, so stay tuned!

A Big Ol’ Pile of WIPs!

This week was a whirlwind here. As I’m sure I’ve mentioned in the past, once a year Mr Knitting Sarah has a conference that takes place at a nearby-ish resort and his company very generously allows families to tag along should they be able. So while Mr KS is in meetings, the kids get to run endlessly through the resort’s waterpark. This year, just because the kids are older and to keep things interesting, I even sprung for the indoor theme park pass for them. So for three days, we alternated between waterpark and indoor theme park. As an introvert, it totally overwhelms me, but the kiddos love it and, of course, I can bring my knitting along so I manage just fine.

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This time around I got almost to the toe on this sock for the mister. I’m just working the basic socks I also do for him (I am forbidden from trying anything new with his socks), so they are nice and easy and sport weight, so they roll off the needles quickly. He’s been wearing mostly handknit socks lately, so I’m definitely motivated to get a few more socks in his sock drawer. I would have gotten farther on these, but unfortunately on day three of adventure park mayhem I got a nasty migraine and just couldn’t bring myself to pick up my needles.

Despite departing the sensory overload that is the adventure park, my migraine did not totally go away for another day or so, so I kept things super chill.

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Just a whole bunch of faster singles, all but one of which will be spun into a 2-ply.

This one I actually finished before we left…

 

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It’s the Three Waters Farm Top of the Month Club for February. Seeing as though March will be in the mail shortly, I’d better get plying soon!

The other three were all from new-to-me dyers…

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This one is from On The Round.

And this one…

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And this one…

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Are both from Wound Up Fiber Arts. I’ll have a full report on them once they’re plied and finished.

And, of course, my wheel is not empty now…

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Nope, I have Quilter’s Magic on Rambouillet from Three Waters Farm on the wheel. This one I intend to be just plain ol’ low twist stand-alone singles.

And that has been my week really! A busy week resulting in a big ol’ pile of WIPs. I think it’s almost time to start finishing them off!