Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Road Trip to Hartford WI

Today I met up with my knitting buddies, Kathy and Sue, plus meeting two new folks, Patrice from Beaver Dam and Lois from Waukesha. We met for lunch and knitting at the Perk Place in Hartford WI. This delightful coffee shop is next door to The Main Street Yarn Shop and two doors up from a big St. Vincent de Paul Thrift Shop. It doesn't get much better than that, if you ask me!

Here's the yarn shop:

It's a wonderful shop with comfy places to sit, a nice selection of yarns, and a very friendly owner. If you find yourself up that way, plan to stop in.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Winding Down 2009

We are about half way through the winter break from school. Having cleared Christmas, we have cleared the worst of it with our kids and their seasonal craziness. Mr. SABLE is taking this week off from work, so we have a lot of unstructured time, which can be both good and bad.

Earlier this year, I accepted a meme on Facebook: agree to make a handmade something for someone, and they agree to reciprocate, sometime before the end of 2009. I'm getting down to the wire on 2009, eh? I keep getting ideas of things that would be fun to make, but then, talking myself out of actually doing them, thinking the recipients won't like the result. Finally, I just had a moment of inspiration and made these handwarmers for my friend Leslie:

They are from Brown Sheep Nature Spun Sport, color Monument Green. US #3 double point needles. It's a very simple twisted stitch. The pair weighs 28 grams, so you could definitely get a pair out of one ball. I was working off a cone that Heather at The Sow's Ear bought for me on deep deep deep discount. It's nice to have friends who manage yarn stores. Although the finished mitts are extremely similar to an existing pattern, I'm probably going to write mine up and make it available free. I use a different number of stitches and have a different thumb treatment from the existing pattern.

In Weaving News
Owen wanted to make a project on my loom after he saw my first scarf. (See previous post.) I had a bad feeling that he wouldn't really have the follow-through for something so contemplative and repetitive. It's not that I want him to fail, but I've seen him start a lot of fiber-related projects over the years and never complete any.

We warped the loom with some sport weight acrylic yarn I had acquired along with a larger batch of cones of wool yarns. Sure enough, Owen lost interest after about 2". I took over so that I could free up my loom for my projects and get some practice, too. By the end, my selvedges were much more even.

Here's Mr SABLE modeling the finished scarf:

Even though it's baby-melting acrylic, I still think it turned out pretty nice.

I hope you all are enjoying the last few days of 2009. We have abundant sunshine today, but cold. It's nice to look out at the fresh snow sparkling on the ground from a warm vantage point indoors.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Now With Weaving!

It's not like I needed One More Thing To Do and it's not like I needed One More Piece of Equipment, but I finally caved in to a little urge that's been lying dormant for 30 years, but giving me occasional little nudges. I used my birthday money and bought an Ashford 32" Rigid Heddle Loom and stand. Yesterday I warped it for a simple scarf and today I took my first piece off the loom.

It's not anywhere close to perfect, but not nearly as flawed as I feared it might be while I was working on it.

The warp yarn is Knit One, Crochet Too Parfait, in a kind of dusky lavender color. The weft is Brown Sheep Lambs Pride Worsted in a rich dark purple. These pics show it before I washed it, and the flash gave the yarn a sheen it doesn't really have. It's soaking right now, and with a little luck, I'll be able to get some natural light pics soon.

In other news, last week, while Mr. SABLE was in San Diego, we had about 15" of snow. It was a record-breaking snow event for Madison. The kids had Wednesday off from school and everything ground to a halt. Mr. SABLE had parked his car in the surface lot at the airport, thereby saving his company a whopping $2 a day over the cost of the garage, so Wednesday night after we were plowed out, we went out to the airport, found his car, dug it out, and then stayed to meet his plane. Remarkably, it was only about 40 minutes late.

In knitting news, I had to make another handspun wool/alpaca hat for Mr. SABLE because Owen claimed the first one for himself. Owen tried to claim the replacement, too, but I think he got told a thing or two.

Saturday, December 05, 2009

First Snowfall

Yesterday we got our first real stick-to-the-ground snowfall of the season. Here's the little guy preparing for a run at our nearby sledding hill.

And here are some galls.

These are both iPhone pics, so not great as far as photography goes.

Mr. SABLE's gone to San Diego until Wednesday evening. Should be an interesting couple of days ahead.