Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Elizabeth Cap
Using Lana Grossa Stretch Boot Sock yarn, I recently finished this little Elizabeth Cap. It's a very charming little cap that turned out to be very flattering. It is made with 2.75mm needles knit completely in garter stitch and designed by the writer of my very favourite knitting blog - Techknitter. Her patterns can be found on Ravelry at this link: Techknitter patterns on Ravelry. You must be a member of Ravelry to view that link.

Her fabulous blog on knitting is here: Techknitter. There is also a link on that page for her patterns. It has the very best knitting instructions and illustrations I have ever found.

On opening one of my pillowcases that I have scoured fleece stored in, I found some woad dyed Shetland I had forgotten about. I have been combing, carding and spinning Shetland fleece. The whole fleece was not dyed, just part of it. Of course I found this too enticing to close up & ignore so I started combing & carding. It is not white, but has some non white fibres dispersed throughout, which to me is very pleasing.
Woad Shetland Singles

I finished spinning the singles; rewound them, which I do with all of my singles before plying to even out the twist, and will soon start spinning the singles of the undyed portion of the fleece. The entire fleece is ready to be spun, but I am not hurried about it. It will be finished when it's timely.
Off White Shetland Roving

I find the process of combing & carding easy to do when I have the need to contemplate a happening in my life of significance. I can labour away at the combing for hours while my mind works on the  problem at hand.
Wool Combs by Four Poster Woodworking

Drum Carder by Four Poster Woodworking

Vegetable matter in off white Shetland
The fleece was somewhat peppered with vegetable matter & the combing cleaned it nicely which would be impossible otherwise while at the same time getting short fibres out. I then carded it through a drum carder 3 times to blend all of the lengths. I used all but the shortest fibres over 2 inches long, so there is a variety of lengths in the batts created. From that point I remove it from the drum carder with a diz and I have lovely fluffy roving.

I spun the singles on the 22" Elizabeth using the double drive and smaller whorl with a short forward draw. This is resulting in a semi worsted yarn because of the carded preparation.
Woad Shetland single on Elizabeth

White Shetland roving
I have started combing another Shetland fleece which is noticeably softer & whiter than the one referred to in the above paragraphs. It is being prepared in the same manner and is sooo soft.
I have no concrete plans yet for these yarns, though I am thinking about a new sweater for my hubby.

For the last few weeks he has been creating a Norwegian style spinning wheel for me. It is looking beautiful. This is a 25" wheel, not meant for travelling. Pictures when it's finished will appear here.