Thursday, September 5, 2013

Return to Wool

Fall is here. This morning was the first really cool morning (10C) and I had to don my Buttonbox Waistcoat until things warmed up around noon. There's something so bittersweet about this. The first chill is exciting for the knitter in me, as it signals a return to the bustle of the fall fibre festival season, but at the same time I know the darkness of winter is only around the corner. The leaves on the Boston Ivy on the old schoolhouse outside our third floor hall window are tinged with red--hard to see in this photo, but definitely there when you look close up.

I've just completed a second sampler shawl swatch, this time in Jamieson and Smith jumper weight. It's been a while since I worked with real shetland wool, and I'd forgotten the total pleasure of knitting with it. It's elastic and light and warm all at the same time.

This time I played with bobbles on the points of the bottom edge and a picot bind off at the top. Most importantly, I took time to write up my notes and thoughts about the sample. This is so hard to do! The desire to keep knitting is almost overwhelming, but so much time is saved when everything is recorded properly (even if not neatly).


Isabel and I had a good session last night, critiquing the samples. She thinks the Cat's Eye motif (third from the bottom) should be "voted off the island", but I haven't yet made up my mind.
A couple of interesting packages arrived in the mail. First up, two lbs of corriedale top from the Fibre Garden in a light grey streaked with bits of black. This is headed for the spinning wheel and, eventually, a Zora cardigan for me. Yesterday afternoon I spun the first 50g (I know, I know, I'm switching back and forth from metric to imperial measurements) and I'm very pleased with the result.

Next up, some discontinued Kathmandu Chunky, from WEBS, sold at a huge discount, for a test knit of my upcoming Petrova jacket. Get some of this while you still can; it's an amazing blend of wool, silk, and cashmere and so soft it's perfect for a cowl-necked garment.

 Finally, I biked, with my drop spindle to the monthly spinning day of the Kingston Handloom Spinners and Weavers Guild. They have the second floor of the old townhall in Portsmouth, opposite the Olympic Harbour. Here's Alison plying some cotton she had earlier spun on a spindle. We had a potluck lunch and I learned a lot.


The Guild will have a booth at the upcoming Wolfe Island Fibre Festival. Hope to see you there.

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