Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Dyeing Day Part 3

Dyeing Day Part 3
Well here we go, I've just finished setting everything out.
Now to put the dye stock into the dye pot, heat it up, add the vinegar and then place the yarn, into the dye pot.  Today I'll be using my "Brown" Jacquard Acid dye, to dye up 2 more skeins of my handspun 3 ply whit alpaca yarn.  Well here goes!
Wow, the yarn absorbed this dye much faster.  Not that the other dyes didn't absorb fast, it just seems that this one absorbed faster.  It still has 15 more minutes left to soak in the very hot water, before I turn off the heat and let it cool down for 30 minutes.
Now I have 4 skeins to rewind and make labels for, while these 2 skeins hang to dry.  Hopefully tomorrow I'll have pictures to share and listings to post.

Monday, April 18, 2016

Dyeing Day Part 2

Dyeing Day Part 2
This is definitely a process and one that I truly have fun with.  Today I have my Jacquard Acid dyes out again, but this time just the one color "Sky Blue".  I'll be dyeing 2 more skeins of my handspun 3 ply white alpaca yarn.  I just placed the first skein in the dye pot and have one more skein to dye after this.  I dye each skein separate, so that there's plenty of room for each skein in the dye pot.
I still have 2 more skeins to dye, but I'll have to dye them another day.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Dyeing Day

Dyeing Day
Its a process of me adding color to my handspun yarn.  Dyeing my yarn is done with Jacquard Acid Dyes.  Today, I made up 2 dye stocks of Sky Blue and Brown, then I set them aside to cool.  I'll use these to dye 4 other skeins of yarn another day.  Today though I'm combining 1 part violet and 1 part scarlet dye stock to make a red violet.
This is the first skein of my handspun white alpaca yarn in the dye pot, I have one more skein to dye after this one.  This is my first attempt at blending 2 dye stocks together and it really looks terrific.

Friday, April 15, 2016

What does Spinning mean to you?

What does Spinning mean to you?
Some think it is a child turning round and round really fast, while playing, until they get dizzy and fall down.  Some may even think of a merry-go-round from their childhood, and how fast they could make it go, before they jumped on.When you type in spinning on the internet you get things like spinning bicycle wheels, tires, exercise bikes. 
However, to us Fiber Artists, it means twisting fiber, fleece, or wool roving, silk, alpaca, angora, mohair, flax, etc. into a continuous thread using either a spinning wheel or a drop spindle.  Spinners can spin their thread thick or thin, plied or un-plied, some will dye their yarns, while others leave it natural.
Fiber artists use their yarn for knitting, crocheting, or weaving projects.  I have seen people even use unspun fiber for knitting, crocheting, weaving and yes even felting.  I love seeing all these different ways of using fiber.
I love to spin my yarn into thin singles, 2 plied yarn and even a 3 ply yarn.  I knit a lot of different projects from my yarn, like socks, hats, scarves, boot cuffs, cowls and shawls.  I have even wove triangle shawls, scarves and overshot coverlet squares with my handspun yarn.  I have even dyed my own yarn too, its fun to watch the fiber absorb the dyes.
Spinning is a form of art and is done in a variety of ways, which makes it exciting, because no 2 yarns are the same.

Monday, April 11, 2016

The Call

The Call
A call came in this morning
to tell me some news.
News that has sent my mind
on a whirl wind.
I've had this call a few other
times, but I worry regardless.
I know you are in good hands,
and there's really nothing I can do.
I'm 3,000 miles away, so all I can
do is wait.
I try to knit, but my mind wanders
and I loose track of my stitches.
I try to do some spinning, but the
fiber is getting over twisted and sometimes
under twisted.
My mind is nothing but a whirl wind.
The phone rings, I jump and I hear
that you are resting and tests were being done,
and the results will come back in a hour or so.
The whirl wind of my mind is slowly dying
down, but its still whirling.
It will not stop until I know that all is well and
you are home.
Get some rest, I love you Mom!

Monday, April 4, 2016

Do you have enough Fleece or Roving?

Do you have enough Fleece or Roving?
Can you answer this question, or is it hard to admit, or are you aware of what you have in your spinning room?
How much is enough FLEECE or ROVING anyways?
I suppose that if you had 7 big tubs filled with carded batts from 1 Alpaca fleece, 2 small buckets of dyed carded alpaca locks, 2 small buckets of dyed carded mohair locks, 1 small bucket of natural silvery mohair locks, 1 small bucket of Wenslydale Teeswater locks, 8oz of Icelandic roving, 2 bags of border Leicester/Corriedale cross (each 2.5 oz)
Wouldn't this imply that you had enough?
Probably not if you spin daily.
But then.....when you see some new fleece or roving, that's been dyed by the owner of the sheep, goat, or alpaca and it really grabs your attention.
Then you've just got to buy it right?
Think about this for a moment -
Do you have room for more fleece or roving? Is it something that you will be spinning up right away, because you have a project in mind?
Sadly, we all have a tendency to buy things in the spur of the moment, often without thought of where we'll put it, when we'll get to spin it, etc.
Always look in your spinning room first before you buy anymore fleece or roving.

Remember, you can always get more fleece once you find room or need it for a special project, you just don't need to over do it.

Beware fleece and roving is very addictive for spinners!

Happy Spinning

aka Spinning Ginny

Friday, March 11, 2016

Newly Listed Skeins and some knitting

Well, my newly dyed yarn is all dry, labels are made, and all 4 skeins are now listed.
Pink Handspun Alpaca Yarn 179 yds.
Pink Handspun Alpaca Yarn 178 yds.
Kelly Green Handspun Alpaca Yarn 200 yds.
Kelly Green Handspun Alpaca Yarn 195 yds.
Once I had all these skeins listed, I sat down and did some knitting on the new Handspun Knitted Mountain Sunset Colonial Merino Half Circle Shawl.
I now have 103 1/2 rows completed.  I still have 56 1/2 more rows to go before I start on the border edge.

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Its Dyeing Day once again

Its dyeing day again!  I've got my 2 different colors of dyes and my tools set out, so I think I'm ready to play.
The first 2 skeins that I'm going to dye, will be dyed pink.  My dye stock is all ready, I just need to pour it into my dye pot and add the first skein of yarn.  Here we go!
Oh boy!  I just get so excited when I see the yarn absorb the dye so fast.  This is going to be a really pretty pink skein of yarn.  I have 1 more skein to dye in this color, as I like to have at least 2 skeins of the same color.  So when this skein is finished I'll be dyeing up another skein in the same color.
Just in time for St. Patrick's Day! This skein of yarn is fast absorbing some Kelly green dye.  This is going to be a brilliant green skein of yarn.  I have 1 more skein to dye in this color and then all 4 skeins will be dyed up. 

More spinning and knitting once again

Well, lets see now........what can I show you today!  Well, yesterday I almost had the first bobbin refilled after 2 hours 1 minute 4 seconds of spinning.

I should have this bobbin filled up today and the second bobbin started being refilled, once again.
This morning the knitting needles were clicking away and another 10 rows was completed in 2 hours 20 seconds.
There is now 96 rows completed, I know it doesn't look it, but it is getting bigger.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Lots of plying yesterday and some knitting today

What more can I say?....should I gloat?....should I rejoice over my success yesterday.  Yep!  I did it!  I finished plying up the second skein, that I had started plying up on Monday.
I wound it off onto my niddy noddy, washed it, hung it to dry and headed back to the spinning wheel and plied up a third skien.
Then I wound it off, washed it, and hung it to dry and headed back to my spinning wheel.  I changed out my bobbins and began refilling the first bobbin.
I did all of this in 2 hours 4 seconds.  I now have 4 skeins (1 was from last month), that I can dye up.  I'm thinking Pink for 2 and Green for the other 2.  What do you think?
This morning I was up bright and early, as I wanted to get back to my knitting on the Handspun Knitted Mountain Sunset Colonial Merino Half Circle Shawl.  I finished another  8 rows in 1 hour 51 minutes 3 seconds.
I now have 86 rows completed. 

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Lots of spinning yesterday and some knitting this morning

Well, yesterday I got a lot of spinning done.  I managed to finished refilling the 3rd bobbin,
then I started in plying
This was all done in 1 hour 49 minutes 56 seconds.  I took a bit of a break and then came back, to finish plying up this skein.
I wound it off onto my niddy noddy, then washed it and hung it to dry.  Then I returned to my spinning wheel to start plying up a new skein.
I came awfully close to filling this bobbin.  It took my 1 hour 50 minutes 45 seconds to finish the first skein and start plying up this skein.  All in all I spent 3 hours 40 minutes 41 seconds in the spinning room.  Not bad for a days worth of spinning!
This morning though it picking up my Handspun Knitted Mountain Sunset Colonial Merino Half Circle Shawl and started in knitting.  I knitted 10 rows and started on the 11th row.  I now have 78 completed rows with 1/4 of the 79th row started.
The shawl isn't laying flat, due to my beginning a new row.  However, the pattern is starting to show up.  I need to get a closer picture of what I call shells,......the pattern calls them fans.

Monday, March 7, 2016

Relaxing Sunday, Knitting on new shawl and maybe some spinning later today.

Yesterday was a quiet relaxing Sunday with my husband, Sue-chi.  We were hoping for some warmer weather, so that we could start leveling the ground and cinder blocks to get ready for erecting, our greenhouse.  However, we didn't get the warmer weather, so instead we relaxed and watched some old movies (Flight of the Phoenix with Jimmy Stuart, The Aviator with Leonardo DiCaprio).  Today though, I started off knitting on the Handspun Knitted Mountain Sunset Colonial Merino Half Circle Shawl.  I was only able to knit 8 rows though, in 1 hour 48 minutes.
However, I have a total of 68 rows knitted so far and that is not bad, since I started knitting on this shawl last Wednesday.
Now to head upstairs and do some spinning.  I'm hoping to finish refilling the third bobbin and then start in plying up a new skein of Handspun 3 ply White Alpaca Yarn. 

Saturday, March 5, 2016

Spinning is a major part of my life

Spinning is a major part of my life.  I spin everyday, sometimes for an hour and sometimes for 2 or 3 hours.  On days where I only get an hours worth of spinning done its usually because life outside of spinning intervenes.  The days where I get to spin for 2 or 3 hours are rare but nice, because I get lots done.  I may even get a bobbin and a half filled or even 2 skeins plied up.  Today I was only able to spin for 1 hour 47 minutes 34 seconds and almost had my 3rd bobbin filled.
Knitting is also a big part of my life and whenever, I can find some spare time to knit, the needles come out and start in clicking away.  Since I was up really early this morning with Sue-chi, because she wasn't feeling well.  I pulled out the shawl I started on 2 days ago and knitted 9 more rows in 1 hour 47 minutes and 23 seconds.
There's a total 60 rows knitted now and a little over 5 hours worth of knitting time.  I've place markers after each repeat, in order to keep track of the pattern.

Friday, March 4, 2016

Sunshine in my eyes makes me feel energized.

Each morning the sun rises earlier and I find myself waking up to the sun shinning in my eyes.  This gives me energy to climb out of bed and head into the spinning room to do some more spinning.  I was so energized this morning, that I finished refilling the second bobbin.
Then because I was so into my spinning, I started in refilling the third bobbin.
Its really hard to believe, that all this spinning was done in 1 hour 46 minutes 43 seconds.
You'd think I would be tired after doing that much spinning, but I wasn't and so I moved on to my knitting.  The Handspun Knitted Mountain Sunset Colonial Merino Half Circle Shawl is growing.
I now have 51 rows knitted and there's 162 sts on my needles.  This is only the second day of knitting on this shawl too.  Yesterday I knitted 35 rows, but today because, more stitches were added, I was only able to knit 16 rows in 1 hour 46 minutes 30 seconds.  The pattern is starting to show a little bit more in this picture too.

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Ideas form for some new products while spinning early in the morning.

As you all know, I really love to spin wool into yarn, knit it into products and even play with dyeing the yarn.  So this morning, when I was sitting at my spinning wheel, at 6:11 am, and spinning up more white alpaca, ideas started forming for a new product to knit up.  My spinning time went by so quickly, because of the ideas that were flowing and 1 hour 46 minutes 17 seconds just flew by.  The second bobbin was almost filled.
So when my spinning time was done, I pulled out a skein of Handspun Mountain Sunset Colonial Merino Yarn, that I spun up a few years ago as a single ply yarn.  I placed it on my umbrella swift to wind it into a center pull ball.  Then I pulled out my size 8 circular needles, that I just recently bought and started in casting on for a "Handspun Knitted Mountain Sunset Colonial Merino Half Circle Shawl".  Here's how much I have done so far.
35 rows finished in 1 hour 42 minutes 59 seconds.

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Getting into a rhythm and new listing

I think I'm getting into an early morning rhythm, because its 6:10 am and I'm in the spinning room again.  Sue-chi is once again curled up and snoring away, in front of the spinning wheel.  I think the fresh air, now that the snow is melted and she's roaming around more outside, that and her age, is what makes her sleep more.  Anyways the spinning wheel is up and running again this morning and the second bobbin is now a little over 1/2 of the way full.
           I also have a new listing for today.....its a simple and fast knitted White Dish Cloth, that I call "Get the rhythm".  Do you like it?

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Refilled first bobbin and New listing

It's 6:09 am here at Spinning Ginny, the light is on in the spinning room and I've fixed my squeaky spinning wheel.  Sue-chi is asleep on the rug, just in front of the spinning wheel.  I finished refilling the first bobbin.
Now I'm starting to refill the second bobbin
 I have a new listing today as well, its not much, but its something all the same.  It's a new Dish Cloth.  Its my own pattern and I named it "Aunt Alice Dish Cloth".  I used Peaches'n Cream Tangerine Cotton Yarn.

Monday, February 29, 2016

Listen Closely, can you hear the whirring of my spinning wheel......and new listing

It's 6:08 am here at Spinning Ginny, the light is on in the spinning room and if you listen closely you can hear the whirring of my spinning wheel.  There's a slight squeak now and again as the spinning wheel spins and the white alpaca fiber slowly twists into a single ply strand of yarn on the bobbin.  Sue-chi (who turned 15 on Saturday), is sleeping on the rug.  The first bobbin is getting closer to being refilled, yet again.
I have a new listing today as well, its not much, but its something all the same.  It's a new Dish Cloth.  Its my own pattern and I named it "Aunt Fay's Dish Cloth" after my Great Aunt Fay.  I used Sugar'n Cream Hot Purple Cotton Yarn. 

Friday, February 26, 2016

Grand day for spinning and laying down cinder blocks

Its was a grand day for spinning
The bobbin is filling fast
and out in the yard my husband
who is bound and determined to work in the yard.
Laying out the cinder blocks for the foundation, that will eventually
house the framing
of our future Greenhouse.  Hubby couldn't do more then put the cinder blocks down, due to the very cold wind.  He's hoping for better weather this weekend, so he can get moving on his project.

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Back upstairs plying and spinning.........New listing

So after spending my morning yesterday dyeing some handspun 3 ply white alpaca yarn, I headed upstairs to finish plying up another skein of yarn.
Then because my 3 bobbins were empty and needed to be refilled once again, I changed bobbins out and started in spinning again.
However, this morning was spent running errands, but once they were done I came home and rewound my newly dyed skeins, made labels, took pictures and then listed them.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Dyeing Day, New Listing and a little spinning

Before I get started dyeing up 2 new skeins of Handspun 3 ply White Alpaca, I want to share a new listing with you.
I started knitting this up yesterday morning, before the sun came up, then stopped to go and do some spinning.  This morning I finished it just before sun rise.
Now I've got all my dyeing stuff set up and I'm ready to get busy dyeing up my 2 skeins of Handspun 3 ply White Alpaca Yarn.
I've brought my water to a simi boil, added my Royal Blue Dye Stock and 1/4 cup of vinegar.  Now its time to add one of my skeins of yarn to the pot.
The yarn really soaked up the dye fast during the first 30 minutes.  Now its in the cooling down stage for 30 minutes.  Then I'll drain it and soak it in the synthrapol for 5 minutes.
Now that both skeins are dyed and hanging to dry, its time to head up to the spinning room and finish plying up another skein of Handspun 3 ply white alpaca yarn.