I Love Carding and Creating Art Batts to Spin Into Luscious Yarn!!

Today was one of those damp dreary days without color. It’s on these days that I create my own colors and blends. I wanted to dye fiber,but I also wanted to be working in my studio. I love how these turned out and can’t wait to spin them into yarn!!

Red, Pink, and Burgundy batts waiting for their turn to be spun.
The Art Batts Being Spun
Green, Gold, and Other Sparkling Fibers Ready for Carding
The Carding Process 1
The Carding Process 2
Ready to Doff and Twist Into Loose Knots
Doffing in Progress
Eight Batt Knots Ready to Spin!!

What are you making/ creating??

For those who don’t follow me on Instagram or Twitter, here’s a photo of my beautiful dog.

Beautiful Dog Nose!

A Happy Soctober SOCK Update!!

Two pairs of finished socks and a pair of socks on the needles!

I love knitting danged near anything, but socks are at the top of the list because they’re easy and a quick knit (unless they’re a men’s size 13-1/2 EEE). Socks are a very convenient way to use up leftover yarn and create some very colorful socks that go with anything.

A bag of leftover handspun yarn and commercial yarn

I knit most of my socks, as well as the socks I list for sale, from my handspun wool yarn that I’ve dyed. A lot of the multicolored and striped socks are knit from leftovers from both my handspun yarn, and wool yarn I’ve bought, for client projects, from Indie dyers like Atomic Fiber Co.

I knit acrylic socks and cotton socks for customers who are sensitive to wool or have wool allergies. The two pairs of color block blue socks below are knit from the same skein of Lion Brand, mandala OMBRE acrylic yarn. These yarn cakes are 344yds of softness that feels like chenille and can produce 2 pair of medium sized socks, or a small/medium hat and a pair of small/medium mittens from one skein, when knit using size 4,5, or 6 knitting needles.

I knit both pairs of socks in the photo on the right, with yarn that I spun. Do you see it in the yarn stash, in the photo on the left?

These two pair of socks will be added to my Etsy shop today!

I hear people telling me they wish they could do a lot of different things, from sewing to woodworking. I believe that if you have the spare time and the impetus to do something, stop talking about it and just do it or try it! It can be ANYTHING!!

*** Notice: I have not received any incentives, perks, or freebies from Atomic Fiber Co. or Lion Brand Yarn Co. This blog post was whipped up on a whim.
I will suggest you find my Etsy shop and buy some SOCKS!!! Happy Soctober!

It’s a warm sock kind of day!

I enjoy creating my own sock designs and do so quite often. I recently learned how to knit what some people call proper gusseted socks. I’m told they fit a lot better than short-row heeled socks.

Here’s the thing about that: If you have small feet and/or small heels, the short-row heels fit much, much better than gusset heeled socks. Gusset heeled socks were the standard for eons and went the way of the dodo for awhile because of the invention of hand-crank sock knitting machines and automatic sock knitting machines. Gusset heeled socks have come hugely back in vogue because there are many people who want socks that fit the whole foot, including and especially the heel.

After all, no one wants a pair of socks that are so tight over their heel that you can see through the knit fabric!

A fitted sock: size 9-1/2 wide

Get busy and make something!!

Here’s the link to my website!

A Knitting Graph Study Using the Same Chart for Two Different Dishcloths!

I’m an avid knitter and I’m an avid reader. I love books and all of the fiber arts, however when it comes to weaving and knitting I prefer to work from charts. I find that charts are easier to process. A good chart is worth a thousand words, especially for knitting and weaving (crocheting, too).

I love Interweave Press Piecework magazine. The Jan/Feb 2010 issue has an interesting chart called, Diamond Basketweave, in the article, A New Pattern Stitch from a Knitting Legend, by Barbara G. Walker. I pulled out two skeins of cotton yarn and got to work.

The chart is 32 stitches both ways. I cast on 52 stitches on size 5 straight needles and knit 5 rows of garter stitch and 5 rows of stockinette stitch. I slipped the first stitch of each row throughout the whole dishcloth. Row 11 began with a slipped stitch, knit 4, knit 6 (purl on wrong side), then worked the pattern, as charted, two times. I knit 5 rows (purl on wrong side) opposite of the top, and finished with with 5 rows of garter stitch before binding off.

I knit the second dishcloth with the same beginning and ending, with a twist: I turned the chart sideways and got a neater basketweave that shows up better on the wrong side.

The orange dishcloth was knit first. The motif shows best on the right side. The real one was knit with the graph sideways and shows best on the wrong side.

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Get busy creating!!!

Here’s the follow-up video about how I make my dryer balls!

Video

I know I promised to do a video of me making dryer balls, but when I get hella busy, I don’t do much blogging or video recording. I wrote a post which was pretty much a brief tutorial on how I make my dryer balls (https://mrsdsfiberodyssey.wordpress.com/2014/04/08/this-is-how-my-dryer-balls-are-made/). So, after several months of being super busy and finally moving into a nice studio space, I am now, finally making good on my promise.

My new studio space has made a huge difference for me in production!  The laminate flooring makes it super easy to clean up after and God knows I can be very messy at times. It has tons of natural light, which I crave and need in order to create beautiful woolly and fibery things.

When you’ve finished watching the vid, you can scroll down and take a peek at all the fibery things I’ve been creating!

Green Bay Packers dryer balls

Green Bay Packers dryer balls

Bright colored dryer balls

Bright colored dryer balls

Green Bay Packers dryer balls

Green Bay Packers dryer balls

the coat tree I turned into a yarn tree for display

the coat tree I turned into a yarn tree for display

close-up of the coat tree I turned into a yarn tree

close-up of the coat tree I turned into a yarn tree

mystery wool yarn I finished spinning

mystery wool yarn I finished spinning

hooded neck warmer

hooded neck warmer

hooded neck warmer

hooded neck warmer

hooded neck warmer

hooded neck warmer

hooded neck wamer

hooded neck wamer

Rainy Day

I have a love-hate relationship with rainy days. I know they’re necessary so that everything has water without us paying for it, but I dislike them when they’re cold and dreary. When they’re dreary, I need things to pull me out of any funk they can sometimes throw me into. When they’re dreary, I crave COLOR!! Lots of bright and bold COLORS!!

I started my work today by finishing these dryer balls in my natural colored wool offering.

Stormy gray dryer balls

While they’re pretty, they just weren’t pretty on a rainy day. These got me going on the dyepot with some wonderful Blue Faced Leicester roving and some Jacquard #735 Kelly Green. A most definite improvement and a needed staple for making dryer balls!

BFL in dyepot

More color improvement came with the blocking of my latest square I knit up, with some merino that I experimented on, from TinCanKnits pattern called Vivid. The colors are canary yellow and sienna. I think I should most definitely experiment some more! Right now, I’m knitting 3 squares of each color from my own hand spun, hand dyed yarn.

latest square The first 6 squares

To top off the adding of COLOR into today’s dreariness, I received a package from my good friend, Jeff Mueller (aka Computer Art Man). He sent this beautiful metal print because I mentioned something in a tweet to him (follow him @computerartman on twitter) about a week ago!

Bright Light Big City by Computer Art Man

Jeff is my favorite digital artist because his work is absolutely amazing!! I now own two pieces of his fabulous artwork. The other piece I own, I bought a few years ago and it’s a gorgeous canvas piece of Marlena Dietrich from a still scene from “Shanghai Express”!!

Now, get out there and DO something!

TLD