Wearing wool vacation socks

Back in 2011 I dyed this yarn:

It’s a skein of Trekking sock yarn and I used it to mop up all the left over dyes on a dye-workshop-weekend we were having on one of the Dutch Wadden isles. The skein was well wrung out prior to mopping and the dryness caused the small flecks of colour.

Recently I was granted a Karma wish and I wished for Anneke to use this skein and knit socks for me:

I love them! They fit so fine and the colour knitted up great, with all the little splashes of colour.
Anneke is someone who knits as tight as I do and that’s a big pre in socks since it enhances wearability and shape. And they hug my feet, which I prefer.

I love wearing them and since I didn’t have to knit a stitch myself I know of no mistakes or coulda-woulda-shoulda-doubts of these socks. Carefree wearing!

Very happy wearing too, these colours lift my spirits. The yarn always did, from the moment it came out of the dyepot, and now I have these friendly happy socks. I’m glad to finally use the yarn that has been waiting in my stash for so long, always to be passed over because some other yarn caught my fancy or because I couldn’t knit for a while.

All those years ago, at the same dyeing workshop, I dyed another sock yarn and tried to play with the colours. This one was wound into segments here at the cabin, before travelling to the isle, so that I would get some sort of broad stripes:

In 2012 I knitted these purple socks from it, back when the blog was barely a month old:
document_upload30534-2_medium2
Ah, it’s the Prickly Pear Socks pattern by Thayer Preece Parker, with a mock cable that I like so much.

Back then I was very principally against using superwash yarn because it’s such a nasty chemical proces to burn off the scales of each fibre so it won’t felt in the washing machine. Lots of waste. The same goes for the production of bamboo yarns and seacell yarns. Awful polluting stuff.
So these socks are made with Schoppenwolle non-superwash yarn.

And of course earlier this year someone put them in the washing machine on 40 degrees and they felted into unrecognizable prickly pear jam tubes.
So I got my scissors and made the legs of the socks into wristwarmers:

Here, in the cabin, I enjoy practical knits with rustic looks and frankly I don’t care how I look as long as I’m warm, comfortable and covered in colours that make me happy.

I unvented the (non)changeable circular needle and now I need a new hobby.

That’s my only 4mm circular needle. A Chiaogoo Red Lace 32″/100 cm

It broke. While I was working dutifully on yet another wip, the Tangled Vine cardigan. That’s mean twice!

I’ve never had anything like this happen. Chiaogoo Red Lace are my favourite needles because they are good quality and have a smooth transit from cable to needle. I usually have two (or more) of each size but not so in the larger sizes because I seldom have more than two on the needles at the same time. And I never anticipated a Red Lace circular breaking.

I’ll have to wait for replacement to arrive. OMG what will I do in the mean time, wool wise??

Let’s hope I can scrounge up something wooly around here… otherwise I might have to take up another hobby.
What’s hip nowadays?
Are we done with planking yet? Is scrapbooking over? Is Holly Hobby still alive?

“PokemonGo” you say?
.
.
.
are there wooly ones?
.
.
.
there are!

The start of my wool vacation.

It’s the first morning of my wool vacation and it looks like this:

Froggy bead socks in progress, a pancake, a floating tea egg and Sandra Bullock doing good comedy in The Proposal.

I did a little bit of silk spinning last night:

Ahhh…. Mulberry silk, dyed by Iboy, in a colourway that talks of Labradorite.

This is waiting for me later:

The light blue Wolop BFL to go with the Wolop Grey for the little vest. In a lovely tin.

My wool vacation will last two weeks and I have a mountain of wool I plan to conquer. Or at least wander around on for a bit. There’s socks to wash, twist to set, fleece to skirt, fleece to wash, pelt to felt, roving to spin, fibre to card, finished projects to dye over and much much more. On top of that I brought along a bunch of sewing stuff because August is my Sew It All month.

But today is about settling in and resting. Do a little of this, do a little of that.

Totally off topic: tugboat and pancakes

This little beauty is parked in the harbour near my house:
mslb Energie sleepboot varend monument

It’s an antique tugboat, out of solid iron. It’s the MSLB Energie, 14,6 meters long and not even 3 m wide, build in 1923 and a registered nautical monument (Dutch link).

mslb Energie sleepboot varend monument

What a beauty! Don’t you just want to put it on like a handknit sock and admire it all day? Oh, how I love tugboats. Always have.

It may have something to do with the children’s series “Poll, Pel en Pingo”. The Dutch alias of the Danish Rasmus Klump:

One day this little bear cub called Poll and his friend Pingo the Pinguin find a wheel. They think it’s a bicycle wheel but their friend Pol the Pelican tells them it’s the steering wheel of a boat. So they built a boat around it and they name it after Poll’s mother, Mary.

 boat by Simon Søgaards

They travel the world and have adventures and each adventure has them home right before dinner with Mary, who happens to just be baking a big stack of pancakes for which Pol is never too big. Nor for a little kiss from his mama.

I love pancakes! Especially after an outdoor adventure. Pancakes have been important in my life.

When I was at little school I got to invite friends over during lunch time on Tuesdays and my mom would bake pancakes. We’d roll them up and eat them like little bears.

Tugboats and pancakes… In another life I’d love to have owned a, antique tugboat. It fits with the Dutch history of canals and harbours and aquatic industry.

The Energie is a type of tugboat called Amsterdammer:

 pic by Pieter Klein

Low, sleek, powerful. My favourite type of tugboat I think!

I painted a tugboat once:

 art by Marvelknits

It’s done in the Japanese brushing style called Sumi-e. Very spontaneous ink brushings on rice paper which soaks up the ink very fast. No time to think, you have to paint fluent and without hesitation. Like breathing out. Every stroke is one breath. You can’t fix mistakes.

It’s certainly not my best work…

This one illustrates the technique better:

 art by Marvelknits.

I made these one Summer, many years ago, to celebrate the boating festival that happens every other year in and around the harbour near my house. Next year, 2017, it’s that time again. Perhaps I’ll stay in the city again and enjoy the festival, firing up the affinity I feel for historic ship. (I wrote “sheep” there :D)

There’s bound to be a tugboat visiting.
mslb Energie sleepboot varend monument

But first Summer 2016: tomorrow I travel to the cabin again for two weeks holiday. I will bake myself a pancake. Hopefully have an adventure or two.

Miscellaneous

I finished the cat wristwarmers for my friend and gave them to her!

Her birthday was back in May but I just couldn’t make myself finish the embroidering of the eyes and whiskers because I was so certain they were too small. Once I resolved to give them anyway, (“perhaps she can use them as decoration”), I finished them:


She got them last Saturday and seemed to like them!

For mindless knitting I’ve started a new sock:

It’s a Zauberball yarn. You wind off the ball until you’ve got 2 x 50 grams and then you alternate and make stripes. Explained in Magic Zauberball Stripe Socks by Tofutrulla
This is Zauberball Crazy, a 2 ply, in colourway 2170. Probably my favourite colourway 🙂

The regular WIPs are progressing as usual. I’m working on Rockefeller and on the socks with the froggy beads. The other WIPs are in the closet, dreaming.

After the first mitten I did not knit any more of the 12 Days of Christmas Mitten Garland KAL by Kat Lewinski. There have been two mittens since, the third one is being released today:

They are lovely designs! And it’s a lovely Ravelry group to read so I’ll be following their progress and look at the new designs. The reason I did not progress is that mitten 2 and 3 do not have that graphic style that mitten 1 had me raving about.

That’s the well documented graphic style called “wood block printy bold shapes what’s meant to be the back ground colour anyway?”

Done in storytelling prints by artists Ludwig Heinrich Jungnickel and Hilke MacIntyre:

Done with blocks of colour by Milton Avery and Tomoko Suzuki:

In monochrome prints by El Gato Gomez and Isabel Cosin:

Bold shapes owning the canvas, by Pierre Bonnard and Chun Eun Sil:

Playing with negative space, Daryl Hochi and Noma Bar:

Storytelling, bold shapes and use of negative space, that’s what I love about the first mitten design:

And now for my final miscellaneous trick, here’s a picture of me spinning last Saturday:

Anna-spinnend-bij-Wolop Photo by Meilindis

Tour de Fleece Day 21: Finish Photo

Tour de Fleeve 2016

One Wolop (vest), two gradients, one Passe-partout (hat?), two Iboy Mulberries, half a purple (green) vest with silk and these icy colours from Passe-Partout that still need to be plied:

Today I finished the last of the ice colours, they now have to rest for a day before plying.
In the mean time I spun some more silk singles to ply with the purple(green) singles for the vest. It’s still on the wheel and I plan to continue tomorrow:

Tour de Fleeve 2016

The wheel has a new drive band, one of 3 mm thick. Instead of the thick one of 5mm I put on on Day 2 of Tour de Fleece. It spins well now.

I spend the rest of the day sewing a skirt. It’s about half done now:

Tour de Fleeve 2016

Linen fabric, cut on the bias, with a chiffon lining. A pocket in one side seam, a zipper in the other:

Tour de Fleeve 2016

The satin band on the top will fold down on the inside. It hides the raw edges and reinforces the waist. Biased fabric will stretch terribly otherwise. I used this satin band instead of a sturdy waistband because this is less work and is enough for a Summer skirt (I was hoping).

The skirt has to hang for at least a night for the fabric to relax a bit before I can hem it at an even length.

That’s quite a bit of things I want to do tomorrow! Spinning and plying and sewing and hemming, on top of the other things Monday brings.
Luckily I won the most important medal today:

“Do things on your own time and as they inspire you. A non-stressed spinner is a winner!”

(the purring a cat does is called “spinning” in Dutch. It’s the same verb used for spinning wool.
Plien is the surname of the spinning friend who advocates to only spin when you enjoy it and not pressure yourself in any way.)
Plien is a wise woman!

Tour de Fleece day 20: ice colours

I plied the turqoise mulberry:

and then I spun hours and hours of ice colours of these Passe-Partout Winter whisper mist colours:

Merino with mulberry silk. Got it at the Knitter’s party with chickens last Summer. There’ll be a new party again this year! Looking forward to it.

This roving is so beautiful, with true Mulberry silk, it gleams and glistens in the light. It’s like spinning spider’s silk, from a happy spider.

It contained the colour of my new skirt (sewn by me, finished this morning, a light Summer linen with a silk chiffon lining):

We were spinning at the new studio of Wolop and I bought this beautiful soft ice blue BFL from her:

to go with the grey sheep I spun earlier this Tour that needs an additional colour to make a vest for me.

And I bought this green sock mix:

as an alternative for the blue Leicester above, as a companion for the vest. I’ve had my eye on this green one since the Midwinterwol Fair but Lieneke from Wolop knew to keep it from me because it contains mohair and I didn’t enjoy spinning mohair the first time I tried it.

Today I bought it because the colours keep making me happy. If the mohair still proves to be tricky I could chose to just ply the two other breeds and leave the mohair out of it. The mohair has a beautiful colour and gleam though!

I’m looking forward to what I will make with today’s yarns and rovings. They fit my palet wonderfully.

With the skirt I made I now have a workable basic pattern. Tomorrow I’ll cut the first real skirt from it, using one of the linens I bought in the right colours:

new yarn: Wol met Verve 100% mulberry

I bough two skeins of the wonderful Mulberry plied silk from Wol met Verve!
Both were custom dyed for me:


the second one is a replica of this colourway, nr 450:

which I perceived to be a white base with a mysterious willow green cast and some dark grey smears. But it turns out it’s a trick of the light, this colourway is in fact a semi-solid minty green and is in permanent demand from the dyer.

Again I learn: “don’t shop fibre that you haven’t seen in real life.”
The yarn base I had seen and I knew it was exactly what I wanted.
The skeins have 800 m on 100 grams and are well plied and of non-fuzzing Mullberry silk. Better than the silk I used for Aquilegia Temptress which already grew fluffy during knitting.

The colourways I had not seen before and I asked Sylvia to dye them. We talked a lot about the purple grey one and it turned out beautiful. Way more beautiful than my picture shows!
But for the green one I just showed the picture of Sylvia’s own stock. In which we both saw something different.

Ah well, I might use it for weaving. It’s such excellent yarn and weaving can shift colours so interestingly.

For now I keep dreaming about a white silk shawl in mist colours. I may ask Sylvia to dye another skein… and this time use my words.

Tour de Fleece day 17: 4 silk singles on one bobbin

I had to stack both turquoise singles onto the same bobbin because the Hill Top Cloud Gradient Pack is on the other two bobbins. I plan to ply those once I’m back in the city which for now leaves me in the cabin for a whole day with just one usable bobbin and a strong desire to spin on my Finnish wheel.

So I spun half of the turquoise silk on the bobbin and then I put a marker colour on. I then spun the other half. When I’m in the city again I’ll unwind the bobbin onto another bobbin until I meet the colour marker. That’s when I can start plying the two singles together.

Here’s the marker, it’s yellow and curly:

The silk is so intensely coloured.

It makes me shake.

I wasn’t done spinning silk on my Scandic Slanty yet so I added two other silk singles on top of the turquoise singles:

And I changed the position of my wheel, to have a different view:

That’s Dutch cyclist Bauke Mollema, he is in second position in this 3 week race!

Oh, how I love to spin these silk balls now that I finally found the wheel to spin them on. They are dyed by Iboy and I want to buy some more later this year.

That one on the right, it looks just like labradorite!

My view for the rest of the purple silk:

🙂

Tonight I drive back to the city. I had a wonderful few days here at the cabin. I look forward to return here shortly for a longer vacation.