Saturday, January 10, 2015

Weekend Wrap Up

New goal for 2015 - every weekend I'm going to post a week's end report from the Wool House.  If I don't post a week's end report...well, I'm just going to.  I have a great work space and I'm always disappointed by how much I don't utilize it.  That's just ridiculous.  

Look for lots of boring pictures of spinning, knitting, weaving, felting, painting...and in turn, there should be all sorts of projects getting finished, felted sheep being made, wool wreaths, some painted floor cloths...  The possibilities are endless...if I just apply myself!

So, to start of this week's report, I actually did some spinning on Roc Day.  This is Hershey's lamb fleece.  Remember when he was still Hershey chocolate brown?  When he slept on my lap so he didn't have to grow up and go be a breeding ram at a big farm without laps to sleep on and lots of cookies?  This is the fleece that sat on my lap :-).


I started spinning to see what the yarn felt like it wanted to be.  The result seemed completely reasonable so I pulled off a bit to make my sample card.  I make a sample card so that I can try to spin a consistent yarn from beginning to end, even if it takes me several weeks to get through that big bag of roving.


Here I have my sample card with a single ply, a double ply and a short sample skein to wash and test knit to make sure I really am happy with the yarn.


All yarn is is fiber with some twist.  Simple as that.  Seriously, it really is that simple at its basic form...but there are books and books of "more to it than that" ;-).  I'm not going to even try to say more.  I think it's neat to see it change from one form to the other, just through my hands and a spinning wheel.


What I can show you is how I use my sample card to try and match my spinning from start to finish. Ideally the yarn I spin each day should match up to the single I have stored on my sample card, from the thickness to the amount of twist per inch.  I lay the freshly spun yarn up next to the original samples.  So far, so good.


I'm also working on a weaving project.  This is a test sample for a scarf from the May/June issue of Handwoven.  It's a 6 harness pattern of "American Snowflakes".  I substituted one of the yarns the pattern called for so here I'm making sure I've got the correct sett for the warp (white - up and down) yarn and that I'm weaving the correct picks per inch (light gray - back and forth) as well.  It's not a very large sample, but that was the extra yarn I had available.  I think it's telling me what I need to know.


The weaving sheep don't fit on the Baby Mac as well as they do on the Big Mac, but they're keeping a good eye on my threading and weaving pattern just the same ;-).


Tilly and Kate came and went throughout the week, depending on the weather.  On warmer days they found lots to keep them busy outside.


On cold days, they stayed inside with me.


The sun came out for about 4 minutes one afternoon.


And I "finished" a hat...that needs its own blog post.  As with most of my projects, "I learned a lot". At least I ended up with a warm hat for these last few days.  I've appreciated that for sure!

So, that's a wrap up from the week.  I'm happy that I have something to report.  Hopefully as the year goes on, I'll have more and more.  If you'd like to join along and report in with a weekly wrap up yourself, please do so!  Just leave a comment below and if you have a blog or website, share that as well and we can all encourage each other :-D.


34 comments:

Far Side of Fifty said...

You are making progress! That hat is lovely, gosh I have learned so much about spinning from you I didn't know about the card sample but it makes sense! Accountability...I need some of that for my projects too. Stay warm:)

Jane B. said...

When I followed the link and saw the pic of Bitey Whitey, I was reminded that he was such a beautiful boy!

Tyche's Minder said...

Wait. What? Spinning and weaving posts are boring? Oh oh.

Need to hear the story behind the hat.

This weekend wrap-up is a good idea. I'm going to join you, she's says with some force, just before she drops the ball....

Benita Story said...

I started tax season this week. Trade ya! ;)

Deb W said...

I love the shot of Kate in the Wool House with all the wool and tools all around. So cozy! Is Hershey with Kathy? If so, after a breeding season or two, will he get 'tutored and come back to you?

Michelle said...

Keep it up; you just might get me itching enough to wedge spinning back into my schedule SOMEwhere!

Lori Skoog said...

Good idea Miss Sara! I'm going to hold you to it.

thecrazysheeplady said...

Yeah, I almost couldn't bring myself to post that link. Too sad :-(.

thecrazysheeplady said...

Well, not boring to ALL of us ;-).

thecrazysheeplady said...

No, Hershey's here. He opted for staying here, sleeping on my lap :-).

thecrazysheeplady said...

PLEASE!!!

T.L. Merrybard said...

I currently have two yarny projects on the go. One is a crocheted amigurumi koala for a grand nephew, and the other is a granny square afghan for my sister and her family in their Aussie Rules football team's colours. Shh, it's a secret! :) Neither is going very fast as I also write and do art that takes up a lot of my time. Crochet is my brain rest from my other hobbies. :)

Hopefully the afghan will be ready for next winter here in Oz, and the koala and his matching brother, who i have yet to start, need to be ready to send to Kentucky ready for a baby shower in February! So far Mr Koala number one is a pile of body parts, all ready to be sewn together and stuffed. Mr Koala number two is but a dream. :)

LL Farm said...

Amazing! I knit, but don't spin...actually need to find a spinner for my alpacas come spring. Do you find it relaxing?

Lisa W said...

This is a great idea and I will enjoy reading about your various projects and progress. I spent nearly all day today 'playing' - finally spun up a good amount of that California Red X that I shared with you - haven't done any plying with it yet, though. Also did some eco printing on silk and wool with eucalyptus since my daughter wanted to learn how before she returns to Australia tomorrow :-(

Karen Battersby said...

I will hold you to the weekly updates. But I completely understand the having an awesome studio space and then not getting to it. My goal for this year is to make sure that I go into my studio every day, even if it's jsut to water the plants and sit for a spell. And I totally LOVE the hat, even if....

Auntie Reg said...

What a wonderful idea. Amazing how quickly one can complete projects in a designated work area. Maybe Kate helps by staying in the wool house with you. Go Sara go!!!

MarmePurl said...

I am going to LOVE this series.

Tombstone Livestock said...

Well even with an awesome Wool House you have an excuse for not getting there often with all the adorable critters to feed cookies and take pictures of takes time too. So much to do, so little time. Like the idea of weekly report, you are so talented. Off to celebrate Roc Day later this morning.

Sheepmom said...

What a good idea! Knowing a weekly report is due will help you work to have thing to put in it, and writing down all that you did do during the week will help boost your morale on those days when you feel like you didn't DO anything. Seeing work listed in print is very reassuring ;-) Looking forward to hearing the story on the hat.

English sheep gal said...

Hi Sara, well I will look forward to reading this series weekly, and certainly don't think it will be boring.

Since I finished the hats and scarves I was knitting as Christmas presents I have time to work on my backup project, which has been on the needles for 2 + yrs, I'm knitting a shawl for myself, based on the 'Age of Brass' kerchief pattern, but adding more and more repeats. Now I have almost 500 stitches per row, progress is very slow, but I take it into work and read on my kindle and get part of a row done during my lunchbreak.

2 local friends have Shetland sheep, and I have multiple small skeins of yarn in a wonderful range of natural colors from whites and creams, through several shades of grey, then light and dark browns. Currently mulling over ideas for this but think I may knit a hat with the colors going darkest to lightest, my Mums birthday is coming up in March, so maybe she will be getting a new hat.

My 2015 goals..... use my spinning wheel more, I have a wonderful travel Lendrum, that I saved hard for, but can't seem to make time to use, then every time I do, am frustrated that it takes me a while to find my rhythm and spin yarn that I am happy with. I would also like to keep better track of finished items, I have only been knitting a few years, and can only knit really basic stuff like hats, cowls, and baby booties, but it would be nice to have a record maybe a photo album of the completed items, with the recipient wearing them, if they are given as gifts.

I also need to get a grip on my fear of knitting patterns - how do I know I can't do it if I don't try - after all I learned several new things with my Age of Brass shawl , like yarn overs and 'make ones', I like knitting with circular needles but have never tried knitting in the round, or cables, despite having multiple beginners books, and access to Youtube videos, and the Ravelry website.

So I guess to summarize, my goals would be 'try new things', and 'keep track', both with helpful notes as I go along, and finished item photos.

Thanks for your post, made me think about things that have been at the back of my mind for a while, and now they are in writing I can't ignore them anymore!

Susan Mckee-Nugent said...

I sincerely hope I won't have to wear a 'Dog Shaming' sign when I look at your accomplishments and then 'think' my pile(s) :)

karen said...

love your spinning and that hat!! I like your resolution and look forward to more posts :)

Wol 'n Draad said...

I just love your post and am looking forward to more in this series.
It is always great to see how other people do things and learn something new on the way!
See ye next week! :-)
Love, Ineke

Tina Marie the Willow Witch said...

Loved seeing whats happening in the workroom and it is a lovely space. The hat is pretty and looks toasty warm.

Maureen said...

LOVE the use of your sample card - brilliant! I shall have to steal, er "borrow" that idea.

Wow, you are so busy and talented; the weaving and knitting are awesome and I adore your photos - inside and out.

Also love the idea of a weekly wrap up - I just may join in...

Unknown said...

Hershey's yarn is absolutely lovely!

thecrazysheeplady said...

Yes, I really enjoy spinning and do find it relaxing. I don't have a solid project in mind for Hershey's yarn, but I'm leaning towards a vest. I do have project in mind for Maisie's yarn...which is what I'll be spinning next :-).

Henny Penny said...

You do have a great work space! I love it! My dream used to be to own a spinning wheel, have sheep, and learn to spin. I will enjoy watching what you do.

thecrazysheeplady said...

I think you should start a "sample scarf". Take a knitting stitch/pattern book, pick one you like, say a lace pattern, knit it up into a square, pick another pattern, maybe a cable of some sort, adjust your stitch count to match it and add it to your first square... After about 5 or 6 squares, you'll be amazed at how you can knit dang near anything. The next thing I'd recommend is learning how to fix knitting mistakes, also good to do with small samples like that. Once you learn how to find your mistake, how easy it is to drop down and fix it and then continue on without having to frog big sections, you are good. to. go. :-D

Take your Lendrum to someone who's an experienced spinner and have them take a look. There may be something that just needs an adjustment and the problems you are having are not your fault. Seriously.

Will look forward to your updates! :-D

Andee said...

I want to come hang out in your wool house! It looks so cozy. I have been spinning and knitting and I really need some motivation to get some of it photographed and documented. Since I don't have to be at the farm on Saturday's now I've been calling Saturdays "New Skill Saturdays". I watch YouTube videos and learn how to do something new in the knitting and spinning world. I love it!

thecrazysheeplady said...

I think that's a great idea!

Lisa Smith said...

I love your weaving sheep! I went back to your other post about them, thinking I mind find out where they came from. Do you know who made them? I am excited to hear that you'll be doing a weekly wrap up post! That's one more exciting email to look forward to! I love living vicariously through your blog (don't worry - - in a non-creepy way!). You have such a lovely life - - just the kind I would have chosen for myself if I could choose. Your cheerful, happy sheep/dogs/cats/horses are the best thing, by far! Thank you for all of the time and effort you put into sharing your life with us. I have one particular goal this year: to finally learn who is who! :-)

truthbtold said...

Sara can you please share with us where you got your beautiful drop spindle with the sheep ? I is so beautiful . I looked on the internet but never found anything remotely close to this one. Thanks so much Karen Powell / shopgirl1234@sbcglobal.net

thecrazysheeplady said...

That's a Golding spindle :-). http://www.goldingfibertools.com/

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