22 June 2013

rainbow daybreak shawl

Rainbow Spun DaybreakShawl

A few posts back I showed some striping textured rolag/batts that I was testing.  I spun up about 1.5 oz of rainbow striped rolag/batts and knit a cool shawl by a neat designer.  The pattern is called daybreak, it's a stephen west pattern.  It's been made so many times and can look so different depending on the colour progressions and pairings.

Rainbow Spun DaybreakShawl

Here are the rolags I spun the yarn from.  I dyed it all, even the bamboo and the nepps.

Carded batts half each

Below are some more sets I've put together:

Textured Rolled Batts 2oz

Textured Rolled Batts

Textured Rolled Batts

2 4oz matching striped batts

This is a skein I spun from one of my sets:
Self striping skein

I've also been doing lots of textured mixed batts. I love adding flax, linen, sari waste, nylon and tencel... it makes such a neat blend for doing fun art yarns.  Below are some batts and a cool bubble ply skein that I did.

Bubble Ply

Textured Batts

Textured Batts

Aside from dyeing solids to blend with, I've been doing alot of low water immersion dyeing as well.  I love the look of handpainted rovings, but hate the waste of using saran wrap for steaming.  So instead, I only put about 1.5 inches of water in the pot, and organize the yarn into sections with certain areas hanging in the pot so I can still apply colour in sections or areas intentionally.  The result is really neat because they end up being more painterly.  Looser, but still controlled.

hand dyed mixed bfl

Hand dyed mixed bfl

LavenderDesert 50/30/20 Wool Silk Seacell

ForestMoss 50/30/20 Wool Silk Seacell

Seafaring 50/30/20 Wool Silk Seacell

Baby Quilt done!

Baby quilt

Baby quilt

I finished the baby quilt I was working on. It ended up being about 52 by 52 inches so a pretty good size.  The backing is a plain organic cotton and for the binding I used the leftovers from the king size I made last year.  I attempted to do free motion quilting with a darning foot i bought, but the arm on my machine is not big enough, and it was too hard to have so much of the quilt stuffed into the little area.  I put the regular foot back on and just did stitch in the ditch but of course since I didn't bother to put the walking foot on, it got a bit pinchy.  Especially the binding. It kind of did a small pinch at each pin.  I'm not good enough to go without pinning for the binding.  So it's ok though, because they're just small mistakes.  I messed up the mitering of the corners a bit too, but nothing too major. I'm still happy with it.  It's a bit busy, I wish I had some solids in my stash.  Next time I'm at the store, I'll stock up on a few metres of neat coloured solids.

Baby quilt

28 May 2013

Baby Quilt for Paul's cousin

baby quilt squares

So since my last quilting venture was an enormous king size, I've decided to do mostly smaller quilts from now on.  That one was just too large to manipulate on my machine and ironing board!   I have a few quilting mags, and I'd found a cute little baby quilt pattern in one!  I'm excited because not only is the pattern fairly simple (rotary cut and piecing), but I also get to justify buying the magazine in the first place! ha!

Right now I don't have any solids in my stash so I'm just using a bunch of sweet prints I have been collecting for a while.  Most notably, I'm breaking into my stash of 'forest pals', which is my absolute most favourite print!  SO CUTE!  Since I'm lacking some solids, the quilt is a tad bit busy, but I feel like the turquoise strawberry print gives the eye a little bit of focus.  I'm planning on putting on a white or cream coloured border, and then a green print binding.  I'm also planning to just use a nice flannel on the backing and skip the  batting.  Still loving my husqvarna emerald!

some long pieces cut:
baby quilt pieces

pieced top, still needs a border and binding:
Baby quilt in progress

27 May 2013

OHS Master Spinner year 3

Well, I just came back from year 3 of the OHS Master Spinner's education, and this year will for sure be the most work.  Hard to grasp because the previous years were also quite a bit of work.  I've so busy dyeing fibre and carding so that I could sell up there, and it went well! I only came home with a few rovings and two batt sets.  However, I did spin one of my own, and I also ended up trading most of it or buying supply up there from other students!  haha...  I was able though to figure out a few different ideas, so I'm preparing new stock to open up the etsy shop with.

Since I've been back from haliburton, I've mainly been washing fleece.  I picked up some great cormo from my friend Stella who's with my year, and another cross from my friend Bridget who's also in my year.  I've also been getting going on my year 3 exotic natural dye homework.  I chose logwood and used three afterbaths to alter the ph and colour.  I'm not looking forward to doing all the lightfast and washfast tests though, ***sigh***.

Here's the logwood skeins drying.  from left to right it's logwood, logwood plus acid afterbath, logwood plus alkaline afterbath, and logwood with copper afterbath.
Logwood natural dyes

I enjoy the darkness and deepness since with natural dyes, you usually end up with orange browns or yellows.  I still prefer acid dyes because it's really no worse environmentally and you get much more colour selection, which is my interest!

22 March 2013

belated 6 months!

We just passed our 6 month anniversary!  I've never been so happy and everyday I am more in love than before.  I feel so lucky to have found someone who makes life so full.  We have such a fun time together doing the most mundane things, and I can't imagine a moment without him in it.  Happy anniversary Noodle.  <3 p="">
Paul and Andie

16 March 2013

RIP Shannon Larrett

Although I did not know him personally, it is because of his presence that I met so many people.  Not many people can have such a positive effect on so many others.  I'm so sorry for his family and close friends for the great loss.  Caitlin, you have my dearest sympathies.  I've only chatted with you online, but you can always email or message me if you need to talk to someone.

13 March 2013


#embroidery onesie all finished up

Well a few people I know are expecting babies, and I had a 3pack of onesie blanks I bought for embroidery projects, so I decided to finally attack them with some thread and needle.  I've only done 2 out of the 3 so far, and they are on the girl side of the spectrum, so the next one is going to be just a little tie and pocket protector design for Noodle's cousin who's having a boy.  It'll be cute.

Little embroidery project I just finished on a onesie #needlecraft

12 March 2013

Long Draw Rainbows

Handspun long draw.

Since I had the two test rolagy batts sitting around, I decided to do a test spin.  I usually strip off small pieces lengthwise and spin a worsted style from batts like these, however, this time I decided to try something a bit different.  I did SO much worsted style spinning for year two of the OHS program that I was missing spinning in the long draw method.  I find the rhythm of it so nice.  And i love the way the fibre stretches like gum.  Anyway, I wasn't expecting much of a different end product aside from the differences in feel long draw gives, but the colourway just transformed and blossomed with long draw. The gradations were stretched and drawn out so nicely.  Much nicer than how i usually spin these.

27 February 2013

Carding some rolly batts.

Carded batts half each

I've been testing out making some 1/2 oz rolled batts with repeatable colour striping.  I finally got the technique down to make them the same weight with the same amount of each colour.  The rolling was tricky since batts have a tendency to poof up and grow significantly as soon as you take them off of the carder, but I figured out how to roll them up nice and tight keeping them fairly small.  The two pictured above were the last two I did one still being a bit larger because I'd rolled it a bit differently.  Now I can focus more on the colour progression being blended.  For testing purposes, I just decided to do a rainbow-ish kinda thing.  I also want to include more fun nepps and extras. I've been dyeing alot of tencel nepps and bamboo the last few days!

1 February 2013

a little weaving, a little spinning

Now that christmas has passed, I have taken january pretty easy in that I've just been doing crafty experiments and tests.  I'm getting my little glass studio ready step by step, it's taking a while as I keep having to have professions come in.  I still need an electrician to wire a dedicated breaker for my kiln, and an hvac guy to install the in-line exhaust fan i bought.  Gas is all installed though.  ya!

So before christmas, i finished the woven scarf/shawl i was working on with the crazy art yarn add ins. I love how it turned out and plan to do more work like this.

Woven scarf

Woven scarf

The pink yarn above I spun from some wool from a rescue.  It was a n-plied corespun that i cut into sections and needle felted the ends to prevent unraveling.  I gifted it to my very good friend Alisa!

Since then I've been spinning alot of test skeins to figure out some new techniques I have been long wanting to try out.  Boucle is what i've mainly been focusing on.  Below are some test skeins.  I would still like it if the circles were bigger, and maybe i'd like a bit more twist in the yarn as a whole, so that's what i'll work on tonight!  But that said, i'm very happy with how they've turned out so far.  I used the traditional z-s-z recipe which makes alot more sense when you actually work through it.

handspun boucle test

handspun boucle test

Other than that, I've cut up and prepared a bunch of blocks for a baby quilt which I plan to get started on this weekend!

2 January 2013

Quilt released out into it's natural habitat

This quilt has been posted about quite a few times, but this is the last as it's finally in it's intended home, on my parents' bed.  FINALLY!  I'm so glad it's done and gone.  I'm happy with everything and how it turned out, especially with mitering the backing into binding.  The only thing I was upset about was that the long arm quilter I used seem to have some thread tension issues.  When I asked the lady, she said it was fine, but she didn't really look, and I didn't press the issue.  However, on the programmed quilt lines, the bobbin thread was clearly set too tightly and is running along the bottom of the quilt.  Curiously, the areas where I was using the free motion setting and guiding the machine myself were fine in their thread tension...  so who knows.  In any case, it's done, and I learned alot.  I'm going to make a few baby quilts now before I dive back into a king/queen sized quilt.

Here's a picture of it that my mom sent. It's on a queen sized bed, but is king sized in it's dimensions.