-- untitled (again) --

welcome back...
i've been expecting you ;) i've been on a much needed break since my last challenge. i have been keeping busy in hobby land but all that spinning had a sister wiped out.

[[weekly wrap-up/finished object(s) current projects]]
on the needles
now that tour de fleece is wrapped up, i am continuing to plug away, albeit slowly, on my portland hat. here is your refresher:

i have about... i'd say 2 or 3 repeats left on it, and then i can start decreasing. i've made a ton of mistakes - talking and/or listening to conversation while knitting is not my thing), but they are well-loved mistakes that i will leave alone, because they don't effect the overall look of the hat. and it is a hat after all ;)

i'm itching to get started on a new project, and here is the kicker - i'm looking at shawls. i mentioned this on the last blog, so ignore this part if you read it already, but shawls always looked and seemed so matronly to me. as of recent i've seen knitted shawls being worn in a different, more current, more "hip" way - as a kerchief. i already wear kerchiefs as accessories, so knitting one with lovely yarn is a natural progression. this i can swing. the hard part is stash diving and finding the "right" yarn, for the "right" shawl. right is in parenthesis because that is relative and really will depend on the mood i am in on the day i am picking yarn and patterns ;) i could always use handspun...

on/off the spinning wheel
today i finished plying my last tour de fleece yarn - 5.4 oz of polwarth. it's a 3-ply yarn of which i managed to spin a whopping 368 yds out of. my new yardage record! i haven't checked the wpi, but it feels like it's fingering to light fingering weight. this yarn is currently drying, but i took a few glamour shots of it before i gave it the spa treatment.

TdF: Finish Line

now that my wheel is currently unoccupied, i cleaned it up/dusted it off and now it's ready to finish spinning the other 2 plies for the husbears 3-ply socks. if you remember (you probably don't) i spun 1.3 or so ounces of "panda" blend (merino/bamboo/nylon) from fatcatknits at the end of tour de fleece to hit my goal of spinning 1 pound of fiber. well... i almost hit the goal. in fact i spun 15.7 ounces! :O say what?! i know... crazy. the even crazier thing is my total yardage in singles was a touch over 1 mile. that is re-damn-diculous! anywho... here is that bobbin i spun on the last day of the tour, and next to it is a before shot of the fiber.

Tdf: Day 23- final day!!!

this was my first time spinning panda blend, and i wasn't sure if it was going to do me wrong, and just leave me all kinds of frustrated. surprisingly it didn't. this blend is super soft and silky, practically drafted itself (come to think of it, i just had a bit of a deja vu moment... so maybe i wrote these exact phrases on my last post? oh well... i'm keeping it!), and all together this blend was really enjoyable to spin. it gave me no problems at all (it spun like other slick fibers i love to spin) other than it shedding all over the place. i had a pile of fluff left on my legs and shirt. this stuff shed like a mofo! and if you only knew how much i can't stand hair being all over the place... just take my word for it. the dogs are lucky they are cute and a non-shedding breed because they would've gotten the boot a long time ago if they weren't ;)

and last in the spinning section, here is my little collection of usable handspun. usable meaning decent yardage - over 150 yds - and not chunky, lumpy and funky. this is the only yarn i keep outside of a plastic bag or plastic storage bin, because it's lovely and i am very proud of it, so of course, i must keep it on display so i can look at it and appreciate the work it took me to get to the point of usable yarn, and also to possibly inspire me to knit with it :)

there are 5 nice skeins here. basket is overflowing, so it is time to knit!

[[odds & ends]]
what i love this week
a clean crafting room.
something about decluttering that makes me all warm and fuzzy inside.

so, i spent a few hours out of the weekend doing some much needed summer cleaning and organizing (i tend to do this each season) because my workspace gets cluttered fast. as i mentioned many months ago, i store most of my fiber stuff in see-through plastic storage bins and shelving systems. it's easy for me to keep things organized and tidy, but it still allows me to see my "stuff" rather than hide it. there is no shame in my game, so there is no need to hide a thing. i also like the see-through bins because i am able to add splashes of color to my craft room, without actually having to have the "stuff" sitting out on the table. anywho... so yeah, my table top gets cleaned regularly because as my husband likes to remind me, i am a stacker. if there is an empty, flat surface, i will stack my "stuff" right on top of it :D in organized piles of course, but nonetheless stacked.

to make this post longer than it really needs to be, through all the sorting, tossing things into the trash (i purge hard when i clean), stuffing donation boxes with items i no longer use, and removing visual clutter, i stumbled upon my first attempt at a sweater, carefully wrapped in its own box.

this sweater, even though you can't see the entire thing, was the makings of a seed stitch, v-neck, slouchy debbie bliss sweater with a chunky cable down the center front, in a very heavy, chunky weight yarn.

get a load of those lovely rosewood needles. probably size us 13. 

i haven't touched this sweater since the time i started knitting it - which i'm sure was fall 2008 - and the yarn is really quite lovely - a deep mossy green - and was pricey at the time for the amount of yardage/weight on the skein. so i am doing what any crafter who hates to waste the good stuff would do. i am frogging this bad boy! perfect knit night project.

i managed to keep my ufo/wip's (unfinished objects/works in progress, that is) consolidated to one single market basket as of my last hard purging session. it is still under control, as much as i've been having the urge to start new projects. i'm trying to discipline myself, and be a predominantly monogamous knitter. i work best like this anyway, as i really don't find multitasking with my hobbies efficient for me. the rule with the ufo/wip basket is, i can only work on what can fit in the basket. this usually ends up being about 5 projects. so far there is a hat for the husbear, a couple of swatches for a sweater, a half-started shawl for my mom which i more than likely won't even bother with right now and an almost finished cotton baby sweater. other items i am currently working on are in my knitting basket which i carry with me from room-to-room and outside for quick access. only 2 items and spinning fiber in there ;)

ufo/wip basket - this is one of the baskets from black sheep gathering. perfect use for this!

what other photos do i have to unload...
oh, here are some dog shots (you know you love them). a couple of weeks ago it was blazing in the house, so i cranked the fan up on high because i was trying to hold out on turning on the a/c... of course the dogs quickly got up from being puddles on the floor and allowed me to take photos of their silliness. enjoy!

july 2 - fun in front of the fan!

july 2 - fun in front of the fan!

july 2 - fun in front of the fan!

and my favorite from this batch:

july 2 - fun in front of the fan!
mr. tinsley is so silly :D

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