Saturday, September 27, 2008

Cuppa tea?

My long service tea pot, the one bought at a discount store when I was 17 or 18, before there was a bear, before there were cubs, but when i was a knitter, has died. I think we can repair her. Tea pots are girls aren't they? To loose a long time tea pot is still sad, I'm a tea bag in a pot, or a loose tea in a pot kind-a-girl, tea-bags in cup - well its ok at work, but at home I want a proper pot of tea, poured from a pot, with all the potential of seconds. So today - I morn my tea pot - who was pretty perfect in many ways, and I'll admit to starting not one but 2 new projects ... and I've been doing some minor plastic surgery on a Knitpics cable. All in all a bits and pieces kind of a week.

There is nothing nicer than a hot, fragrant, weak (yup - I'm a weak tea girl), black tea. Oh coffee is good, at times really good, but tea has its place. And there is something about the ritual of tea, of rinsing out the pot (and tossing the used tea bag you find within), and warming the pot, pouring in the water, settling the lid, making small talk while it brews, and pouring a big mug of tea.

....except when this happens.
The pot is still usable, but doing that involves the use of hot-mitts. And its not quite the same, the elegance of the ritual has gone. And this is the perfect tea pot, perfect for many reasons, it pours nicely without any drips or dribbles, it is easy to fill and empty, and fish out the tea bag so the brew doesn't over-stew. The handle is on top so it balances easy when I pour, and best of all it holds 2 large mugs plus 2 more refills.

I have other pots, see, a whole line up above the stove. Some are new, some old, some inherited, some bought as presents, some received as presents, some just because I liked them. Some cheap - some free, one expensive artist designer pot. My tea pots jostle for space with milk jugs - truly we are old fashioned about such things. Tea made in a pot, and milk served in jug. All the other tea pots lack the charm of my wee enamel one, and most are way to small to hold 2 mugs let alone 2 mugs and the refills. I have vague unformed ideas of plaiting a handle from twine - we shall see.

But about knitting, this is a new baby blanket, the same pattern as the last but in white/grey gotland merino 3 ply. I started on needles size 4mm, but have increased to 4.5mm. I think the yarn is thicker in this skein - the joys of beginner handspun :-). I'll be finished in a week or so, and then won't stress about needing to knit it. I'm not entirely sure when the workmates baby is due, but feel like I've asked a few times and promptly forgot, so it might be rude to ask again.

and a swatch, next week at the knitters study group we begin a top down something. Hats, gloves, sweater, cardie - something, anything top down. I bought a cone of mystery yarn, all wool, 800g at the mill for $8, thinking it would do for Poppy. I'm missing my colour work a little so had swatched a yoke pattern with some blue handspun some time back - but the gauge of the two yarns was very different and the swatch puckered. This time I thought I would use a heavier yarn, more of a match to the cone yarn. The cone yarn bulks up a bit when the swatch is washed. I used some while wool+angora I had in stash. I love the fluffy white with the dusky pink, but again the gauges are different. I found what Sheila McGregor calls a Modern-yoked jersy, in only two colours, where the neck was worked in white and via the colour work the sweater transitioned to another colour for the sleeves and body. I liked that idea as this yarn is not the softest and it would be nice to use the soft white wool-angora around the neck edges.

I'm wondering if I can do some clever maths or fudging and work the gauge change into the yoke. The class is next weekend - so I'll play some more and see where that takes me.

And lastly - I've been performing minor surgery on a spare knitpics cable. I've been converted (or was that subverted?) to using circs over dpns, especially for patters that are not easy to split over dpns, and been knitting a lot of hats recently. I lusted after a circ that was small enough to knit a hat, but had the long tips and was easy to hold. Figuring that the 40 cm was provided with short tips for a reason, I also reasoned that a hat needed a 52 cm, not a 40 or a 60. So I pulled the cable out of one end of a knipics interchangeable options cable, snipped away enough cable so I would have a 52 cm needle when it was re-assembled. I soaked the cable and the end section in hot water to soften and expand, and used the pliers to make sure it was as pushed in as hard and fast as it could be. Fast as in stuck, not speedy. I've knit most of the blanket so far on it, and its been fine, nice long tips, and the join has held fast. Next step - test it on a hat.

ok - take care, go and knit, and have a nice relaxing cuppa tea (me - I'm making do with Cider as it is spring and the tea pot is dead)

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Measure knit, measure knit, measure knit ...

Measure knit,
thats the essence of the past few days knitting. At the last post I had nearly reached 32 cm , now days latter and many many rows latter, I'm at 35 cm.
How can that be?
I knit row after row after row, well actually I knit a row, purl a row, knit a row, purl a row,
stop and measure - and lo only a scant part of a centimeter has been added. There truly is a black hole in the fabric of time and space in which sometimes mysteriously my knitting time passes and yet no progress is made.

Still - today, my slow progress on my Alpaca tangled yoke cardie, lace stole swatch part 2 begins and I spin and spin (maybe thats why my knitting grows so slow).

Here is the tangled alpaca cardigan, which had a marvelous growth spurt last week, but seems to have grown less this week. I tell myself only a few more rows or centimeters, whichever comes first, and then I can make sleeves.

My second half swatch has been begun, this will be grafted to the first half swatch and then a two step knitted border added. There just are not enough days in the week, or rather there are but I have sold my days to my employers. I am usually quite happy about that deal, as it funds my life and my life activities. Monday was different - well I was wondering if resignation letters ended with with a yours sincerely or with some thing more fitting such as take this job and ...

And my gotland merino, spun semi worsted from a cloud, 3 ply, sorry no other stats other than 62g and 72m. This was also from Chocolate wools, and the prep was excellent, a different carder was used this time. I think I've got enough for another 3 skeins to spin up of this, and am thinking it will be the next baby blanket - same as the last but naturally coloured.

Take care, knit some, spin some if you dare, stop and smell some roses, hug the cubs, imagine an ending to the perfect resignation letter for my next storm in a tea cup ...
perhaps my next post will celebrate 37cm
na Stella

Saturday, September 20, 2008

330 stitches

330 stitches, well, 226 stitches and one increase row to go. I finally returned to knitting my re-gagued tangled yoke cardigan, so today there is some progress on that, and I made a start on a lace shawl - with lots of questions and some answers. And a book has tempted me, a pattern book at that ... I've made pancakes, cleaned up, taken big cub for a walk around the reservoir, taken big cub to birthday party, taken little cub to gym class, bought big cub some hiking boots and socks, tidied house, and so here we are - blog time.

Tangled Yoke Cardigan, I started this way back in April, 4th of April, and went fine, then got to the bit where I had to switch from going in to fit the waist, to going back out to fit the bust. For some reason I had done some preliminary sums, but not worked out the increase rate ... and I fudged the first 3-4 cms, then abandoned it. I didn't stop knitting, in fact I knit 8 hats, 4 pairs of mitts, 2 baby blankets, 1 pair of baby booties, 2 scarves, 1 hooded bsj, and 1 shawl. Thats a pretty sizable set of distractions.

Friday - I got out my notebook, did some maths, started knitting this cardie again, and now I'm nearly at the under-arm. The increase rate isn't constant from waist to bust because of that little fudgey bit when I knit past the waist with no real plan to guide me, but bodies are not evenly increased from waist to bust - so its going to work just fine, maybe even better than evenly distributed increases would.

And here I am, at 226 stitches, and 31.75cm (or 317.5mm as I should write - body measurements are officially meant to be recorded in mm for those of us who work in the anthropometric side of things). 2 more plain rows, then the final increase row bringing my total to 330 stitches, work plain until I'm at 37 cm (370mm) and I can start some sleeves. I'm thinking two at once, or at least the section above the rib, just to keep the two the same. I mean its been abandoned before, so it could happen again.

But the reason I took out my stalled Tangled Yoke cardigan was because I got to a natural break in the swatching for my next lace project .... Eunny Jangs Print o the wave stole. I'm knitting this on the larger suggested 3.5mm needles, using a merino, possum silk blend. Its on a cone, so it will bloom a bit, but there should be no joins - imagine that! The lace is knitting up a little less open than I imagined, but ... I will wait for the blocking before I change needle sizes. I love the deep rich red, which isn't captured here accurately at all.

I have questions about the pattern, EJ writes to knit first and last stitches on the right side, and purl on the reverse. Except when they are ssk'd. I wondered if slipping the first stitches would be a neater way to to go. I posted a query on Ravelry ... and following advice worked out that if I slip - I won't have enough separate stitches to pick up to work the border. I'm working a full swatch, 2 repeats wide, 4 repeats long, and plan to graft a second swatch to it, then pick up and knit the two step boarder ... maybe that is a bit OTT? Still I'm a relative novice at lace, and piecing it together and I'd rather stuff up a 42 stitch wide swatch than a full stole.

.... and the book? -Well I've ordered Knitting Classic Style by Veronik Avery (photos by Sara Cameron), cause I borrowed it from the library and I really don't want to give it back .... and I don't buy pattern books usually. I'm a technique book kind-a-gal, so this must have really appealed. You know it was when she made a tubular scarf that echoed Elizabethan collars look really modern yet classic, and referencing M Vionette and Claire McCardell, and making skatie tops and long sleeved tees that I want to knit .... well I was tempted and gave in.

ok - take care
I'm down to two working projects, lace swatching and tangling alpaca ... so I'll go and do that while you go knit on something that you enjoy - cause its a hobby, its meant to be fun!
na stella

Wednesday, September 17, 2008


mmm - Wine and Roses mitts both done, blocked and I'm ready to move on. So today I'm thanking you for the positive comments about Odessa, it was so nice to hear - thank you. I also have a big thank you to Kathy - she gave me a some positive feedback in the form of a rosette, aw shucks ... thank you, then there is the Mitt report and I've sewn on a button, just one mind you.
but first - look!
I'd like to thank all the people who make this possible - the knit bloggers who go before me, who battled code and servers and tech stuff, and the knit communities that encourage us to post our works and progress and let me be a voyeur in the world wide knit community ... ok, I'm no award winning speech writer, so 'nugh about me, and on to the people I'd like to award

So as usual there are a few simple rules to follow in accepting a rosette,
  1. Post the award on your blog.
  2. Ad a link to the person who gave you the award.
  3. Nominate at least 4 others.
  4. Leave a comment on their blog so they can pass it on.
4, I'm not sure I can keep to four but here goes (and we will just assume that Kathy is ineligible - because I want to hand it back)
Ysolda - who is clever, and practical, and knits, and designs and cooks and oh - well just everything really.
Joclyn - who is also clever, knits lace that I aspire to, and parents really really sensibly, and cooks.
Jane - who is clever, knits beautiful things, takes the most amazing photos, and leads me to the dark side of spinning with her images of singles and plied yarns on the bobbin, and cooks.
and just 4?
Oh its hard - but next up would be Deb B- who is also clever, and is not afraid to knit socks, and socks and socks and socks (52 pair plunge kind of volumes of socks), display her stash, and probably cooks as well ...

And the Mitts, here they are, all the texture and colours of summer wine and roses.
Started: 2nd September,
Finished : 16th September,
Needles 2.75mm
Yarn: Handspun 2 ply 76% merino|25% silk mill scrap at a total cost of $NZ1 (its $10 per kg)
Weight: both mitts 24g
Yarn left over: 70g (what do I do with this?)
That means these mitts cost me less than 25 cents? How cool is that?

and lastly - the Monmouth cap, has a button. Hand made in pewter, bought years ago at a gallery and waiting for the right project. It might be a tad small - but I think it works - don't you?

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Oh - P2tog, not K2tog!

There I was knitting along on my Wine and Roses Mitt number 2, all confident and happy and BAM - right there on the last real pattern row of the cuff chart, I notice that what I've happily been knitting as a K2tog is in fact a P2tog. Bother! And when I had the chart copied to put on my magnetic board - the copy center lady misunderstood me and enlarged it - so I've got no excuses. I guess women in their 40's should wear their hobby glasses for more than threading needles lol.

Today - I'm not going back, I actually worked the row as charted - just to see how different it was (not much - can you notice any differences?), and I'm well on my way towards the top of the thumb gusset. I've promised my self that the next knit is a lace shawl, and I'm working towards that, I've also promised my self that I will dig out the forgotten cabled yoke cardie and work out just where I am with it and knit on. But today, I'm blogging, and so there is the update on the mitts, and another hat, and I've got two stories to tell you about how not to respond to a knitted gift because in the past month or two I've had a couple of responses to knitting for others that just make me stop, and wonder what people think knitting is, and is it work the effort involved.

On long trips I take the i-pod all loaded up with Cast-On and Sticks'n'string. Bear takes The Naked Scientists and History according to Bob on his i-pod. Lets make no rash decisions about who the seriously intellectual one is in the car. Once at a party, we were all discussing podcasts, after discussions about titles such as Democracy Today - I did bravely admit my favorite podcast was Cast-on, they just didn't get it, and kept assuming it was knitting patterns I knit along to. I was told by more than one person in that room that their mother was able to remember her patterns and could watch tv while she knited! Back to the podcasts, we take turns to play these in the car. Ages ago Bear listened to Brenda discuss the Monmouth cap, and decided he wanted one. So when I was wondering what do do with the 2 and a bit skeins of Gotland I had plied so far, I thought I'd knit another hat. I started with a pattern from Spring 2008, Spin off, Anne Budds top down hat. Bear thought it was a tad pointy, so I ripped back and started again with a few more increases, a bit like a pi shawl start. Then as I neared the crown Bear suggested the hat was not to his taste - so I decided to make it a top down Monmouth cap,

That makes for a hat that is pretty much the same but with a 3" fold up facing to keep the ears warm instead of a neck flap. Once it was blocked - Bear said it was loose, and didn't fit, so I felted it a little more and now it fits perfect, all I need to do is find a suitable button to add to the top. Both Bear and Boy-cub resist i-cord finishes for hats, they say they remind them of something ... and you know they are right. Hats with a nipple are not a good look for a guy of any age.

And ungrateful hand knit and at times hand spun hand knit recipients? Well the Odessa I knit for my sister, she rang to say thanks but it makes me look like a Granny, and not a cool one so I'm letting you know I'm giving it away - just in case you see it on a student - yes she gave it to one of my students! And my favorite Bear - didn't endear any more knitting for a while from me with his, to pointy, I wouldn't wear that, and its to loose for me now comments. Coupled with the above comments about people who couldn't understand what a knitting podcast could contain, and these non-positive responses to knitted gifts - well I'm a bit down about how non-knitters see knitting and the time, effort and love that goes into knitted items.

So the next few knitted things are for me, just for me and no one else .....
and I've downloaded a free knitting symbol font for my mac (it works for PC's to) and been playing with that, now I can chart patterns with line by line written instructions .... seeing the pattern is so much clearer than reading the pattern.

Take care, keep knitting
na stella

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Half finished,

Today a quick update, I've finished one of my Wine and Roses mitts, so I can show off, and I've been spinning. I've even sort of mastered the art of spinning woolen singles from rolags - but I can't show that yet, its still on the bobbin, so instead I'll show the results of my recent plying and spinning.

First up, one finished Wine and Roses mitt, cast off, hemmed, edges sewn down and ends woven in. I did modify the finish a little, and instead of casting off and sewing down the hems, I grafted the live stitches down into place. I think that makes for less of a ridge but it is a bit fiddly. So this is the back of Mitt 1, not blocked so the cuff curls up a little and it has not relaxed yet, mine seem to fit closer than those in the magazine photos. Either my gauge is off (note to self : measure gauge some time,, they fitted so gauge seemed less important than ususal), or I have bigger hands which is entirely possible I'm not a petite thing. I love the colours, the green of rose leaves and a hint of the pink of roses and of wine - perfect!

... and here is the other side, same as the first as the mitts are reversible. And its my handspun - I'm sneaking off to the mill tomorrow - the have 300g of this set aside for me in an golden orange, which will be fun to spin. I have a Monday night work meeting so won't get so spin with the group Monday night, but it will balance out tomorrows mill visit.

Two different attempts at spinning here, 3 skeins of dark grey Gotland spun semi-worsted from rolags (thanks Kelly for loaning me your hand carders), and 2 skeins of jet black merino. Both spun fairly thickly for me, as practice. Spinning thick seems harder - or perhaps the opportunity for variation are larger than when spinning thin. The handle of the two is so different, the Gotland silky and drapey, the merino silky and bouncy. I still have one bobbin of true worsted spun gotland - and am spinning a matching bobbin so make a two ply worsted yarn, and it will be interesting to see what difference the spinning technique makes when using the same fiber, and same prep.

The dark grey worsted should come out a little like the white yarn in the front of this image. That was spun from some very nicely prepared Gotland again from Chocolate Wool NZ, but carded by a different carder (Hamish has offered me some more of his Gotland, with better prep - so I've accepted his most generous offer - usually there is a waiting list). Here I've got 3 sample skeins here, in the front is a three ply, in the middle a 2 ply and in the back the sample skein of the Gotland spun semi-worsted above. I have mastered my fear of letting twist into the drafting zone, and adjusted my wheel so the pull matches the pull as I draw the rolag back, and its fun, quick spinning and fun. I could get used to this, very much indeed. I've been playing with the last of the dark grey Gotland, and then will spin the pale Gotland this way as well, for practice.

I really do have a thing for Gotland don't I?
take care, knit well, I'm off to watch trash tv and spin and knit some more
na Stella

(I'm learning Maori - and na means from)

Saturday, September 06, 2008

Lets try that again

Today - well there is the 'lets try that again' report on my lace knitting, and the - mmmmm wonder if that will work - look it does, thinking as I knit the lace project, yet another hat is finished, and more fish - another 5. Bear got vouchers from each cub for fathers day (of the tidy my room and set the table sort), and lunch was fun - Platos do such good food. And some good news - Magpie/Suzanne told me that CP needles are darned hard to loose, and my missing dpn would turn up, and she was right, a few days ago I was messaged on Ravelry "did one of my needles fall into their bag at Tuesday knitting", so yes they do appear hard to loose. But this is a knitting blog so ... on to the knitting content.

My lace knitting, I am a relatively newbie at lace, having done at most simple eyelet patterns and things with a few row only. This is my first real lace - panels of repeats, and holes and decreases that need to line up to make a pretty pattern. But - being me, even though I'm a novice - well I couldn't knit the s1k2tog, psso that was on the chart at the top of each diamond. I had to change it to a slip 2 tog as if to knit, slip back to left needle, k3 tog - so I ended up with a centered decrease not a left leaning one.

Early on I realised that life lines were needed, of course I frogged the first 6-10 rows of lace 2 or 3 times before I remembered life lines and their use. You can see the life lines here, and knitting being what it is - after I installed the life lines - well I didn't need them. Go figure. I've not completed the large chart, the one with all the gusset increases, I suspect my gauge is slightly finer than called for (nope - I have not checked, but the mitt fits so I'm close enough), so the mitt seems a closer fit than in the photos - or I have larger hands, either way I'm happy. I've put aside the gusset stitches and am now knitting lace in the round.

I've knit a few mittens in my time, and gloves, and mitts even - all had extra stitches cast on once the thumb gusset stitches were put on holders. The Wine and Roses mitt doesn't have that, you simply join the mitt in the round and keep knitting - no extra stitches. As a pattern-maker for garments - I'd describe it as flat shaping with no allowance for body depth. I'm curious here as the mitt fits, I guess the lace provides extra stretch and so extra stitches are not needed. All those yarn overs must make for a super conformable fabric.

And hats, the latest hat, the intarsia hat from the Knitters Study Group, my own design, from the hearts to the straight decreases. Now can you guess where that central decrease came from? Actually I was taught it for the BSJ and so its not part of my knit tool-kit. This hat is to small for Poppy, but after I've taken it to class next month to show teacher, it can go in my give away to baby collection.

And this here shows why I'm still struggling with Intarsia, its that distortion of the stitches from some part of the process. It happens around the edges of the motifs, and could be the stress from the yarn doubling back across the row, or the difference in tension as the yarn twists around the next colour and then double back. I had hoped blocking would improve this, and it did - only a knitting fuss pot would notice the slight distortion that remains, and no polite knitter would mention it. I guess like rowing out and other knitters issues - it takes practice practice practice.

and fish, - given how many socks I've finished this year, well the left over sock yarn is piling up, so I'm including some fishing time in my knitting week. Again I'm modifying the pattern, and introducing that central decrease to keep the fin from tipping up or down. Oh what a knit-geek I've become. This little pile represents 3 socks, Brother Amos by Brenda Dayne, Hedgerow by Jane Cochran and Salto by Rebekkah Kerner. There is something nice about using up ends of sock yarns and about almost revisiting the sock via the yarn.

Take care, knit well
na Stella

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

These things I know about knitting

There are some things about knitting that are universal, if you go and knit in a bar, with a new knitting group and your favorite crystal palace dpns .... one will be lost. Thats what happened last night, M, J, A and I all popped in for a quick visit to the Tuesday night knitting group, in the Albar. It was good, there were lots of them, we made up 2 tables in the end, and apparently not all of them were there. There was usual knitting stuff, examining of items in progress, and asking of technique advice ... and more passing boyfriends than occurs in our Thursday group. But I lost one of my favorite needles, and a gift at that, from Magpie/Suzanne in CA. Worry not, I had a replacement set ordered before I went to bed the same night.

But the loss got me thinking about the unspoken truths of knitting, those we know but don't say. So these are some of the truths of knitting for me:
  • If you knit in a bar, as a one time thing - with your favorite needles, well you will probably loose one
  • Knitting snacks need to be chosen to match the knitting project, nothing greasy or crumbly especially if knitting with white, light or precious yarn - the seasoned knitter selected hot chocolate over chips, chocolate biscuits or straight chocolate only because it keeps their fingers clean.
  • Wine or spirits are best consumed in inverse relationship to the percieved difficulty of the pattern.
  • Mid way thru any row or pattern repeat requiring concentration - at least once every knit session an unexpected interruption will leave you wondering just where you are. With any luck - wondering is as bad as it gets.
  • The best hat, mitten and scarf patterns are released or come to my attention in time for spring in the southern hemisphere.
You probably can think of many many more ...

ok - so here is my next knitting project, my 2-ply merino silk handspun, in a center pull ball all ready to go ...

When I considered starting a blog, I was but a naive net knitter (and I don't pretend to be any the more savvy about knitting or the net now) and I actually asked the following question in a forum about blogging on Knitters Review Forum, if you have a blog, do you have to include photos of your cat?. Yup - every blog I found seemed to feature quite regularly a cat, or three. I wanted my blog to be about the knitting, and I guess I worried that without the personal that a cat would add, that my blog would be boring. At that time I didn't realise that for me a blog existed to make connections with fellow knitters and give me a space to order my knitterly thoughts. Which is a very long winded way of saying - here is my yarn with my cat, Yo-yo, who has been here for around 8 of her 10 years. Who-ever had Yo-you before us taught her well, she is great with the kids, has never to our knowledge taken so much as a swipe at them, and pays only a passing sniff of interest in yarn or fiber things. She is a nice cat to share a house with.

so ... its Wednesday, and with the Intarsia in an indecisive state - I'm not sure what to do about the crown, last night I avoided that altogether and cast on for some spring mitts,
By now the yarn above has become the start of a new pair
Wine and Roses Mitts design by JoLene Treace. I have not caught it clearly in the photo but the cast on ripple is the prettiest cast on edge I have worked in ages, perhaps ever. And even though the edging is only 4 rows its real lace knitting, yo and ssk and k2tog every single row. I've done something wrong though - a row that involved slipping a stitch purlwise with the yarn in back, well I slipped purlwise but the yarn was in front and now there are long floats on the front, they look pretty but they are not meant to be there. By now I've knit up to the wrist shaping, but I plan to park this and start anew. And those slipped purlwise stitches? Very clever, they allowed a yarn over to be placed either side of the central stitch, and shortened that section, making the scallop shaping more pronounced. Lace is like knitting math - really it is, increasing and decreasing in clever ways and keeping an eye on the stitch count at all times.

Knitting aside, I've got two projects on the spinning wheels, first I've been making Rolags. K was kind enough to loan me her carders and with a lot of help from the Amelia on Ravelry , and u-tube with Sue, I appear to have mastered the art of making Rolags with hand carders. I've also been spinning with them, trying to make fluffy light yarn. I won't know if that has worked until I ply and set it. This fiber is baby Gotland, from Chocolate wool, and I had ordered it to be carded by Belex - but the carding was not good and there are areas which just will not draft at all. This also happened to another batch of Gotland I bought last year from another farm. I tried drum carding this batch, but it seemed about a third of the fiber ended up wasted. Using the hand carders I can creat spinable rolags with very little waste and its only taking a few nights to turn the carded bump into rolags. And yes - it appears the correct name for a lump of carded fiber is in fact a 'bump'.

And on the other wheel (notice how that just fits neatly, the conversational slide from one wheel over to the other?) some thick black merino. On an early visit to the Milton mill, at the start of my spinning journey, I picked up a little bag of 190g of 22 micron black merino combed top. I thought it might as well become some yarn, and could be ideally practice for spinning a little thicker. Spinning thicker is harder than spinning thinner, or perhaps its just harder because I've been doing more finer spinning than thick spinning. Both this and the Gotland rolags are being spun thicker than I'd usually spin and gosh if those bobbins arn't filling up fast, at this rate I can fill a bobbin with thicker singles in a single night.

Its fathers day here on Sunday, so the cubs and I are off Saturday to find something suitable for a father bear ... sensible suggestions that fit modest pocketbooks welcome. We've also got a meal booked at Platos, a local resturant cafe of prize winning status. It should be nice weekend.

Take care, go well, knit when you can and need