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September 2010

Posts from August 2010

Hand Dyed Yarns

Hand Dyed Yarns.  There's nothing quite like them.  You get not only the colourful sensual experience of knitting, spinning and weaving with fibre coloured by an artisan in her studio (or kitchen), but also the depth and beauty of the products that come from these fibres.  There's always an element of surprise for me as the piece comes together, a bit of fun discovering how even semi-solid colours will stack when spun together or knit row by row.  

I love it.

Looking at my current and recently finished work I realize that I want to knit with hand dyed yarn over all else. Indigodragonfly, produced by my smart-ass buddy Kim, which not only have fantastic names, but contain so much fun--the colours make me knit with shades I would never think of touching before.  Briar Rose Fibres--the deep earthy tones that suit my skin and remind me of Autumn.  Lorna's Laces, the semi-solids are so fantastic for giving a garment some oomph to look just that much more pretty than a commercially dyed yarn.  Socks that Rock--all those colours!  Sanguine Gryphon--luxury, depth and inner shine (Bugga!). Stripey Vesper, Madeline Tosh, Sweet Georgia, Dream in Color, Sundara, Tanis, Waterloo Wools Lisa Souza (I just want to roll around in her roving)....

So much talent out there.  So little time to work with it all.  So many others I haven't even tried (tell me your favourites--go on, tempt me).

What's also great about these fibres is that they're produced by independent artisans and by buying their products you're supporting their art and their local economies.  It's a good thing to do and it gives your fibre work a nice ooomph.  

And, if that's not enough (or you've tried all of these already--making me jealous) have a look at The Fibre Cooperative

It's a monthly curated market which helps indie fibre shops who are too small to do advertising, connect with fibrey types like us who are looking for some new stuff to try.  It's easier to use than etsy (which is also a great source for indie dyers, but requires some clever searching and has a great assortment of beautiful things) and is some great one stop shopping.  They also have other fibre related goodies like accessories, jewelry and other good swag.  Go have a look--so many goodies (don't say I didn't warn you).

Two summer sweaters

This might be a record for me...I've finished two summer sweaters that I *really* like this summer.

The first is a bit of a cheat since I actually started it last summer.  I like having a partially finished sweater put away until the beginning of the season so I can whip it up and have something new when the weather changes.  This time it was Nantucket Red which I finished in June and just got around the photographing now.

Nantucket Red

While it's a lovely sweater, that I love the fit on, I found it hard to get photos of me in it that make me look good.  I'm not sure why that is since I always receive compliments on it and I know it fits me well.  This time around I got a bit dressed up and worked the outfit and I'm pleased enough with the photos (I'm generally a reluctant model).

Nantucket Red

I used Calmer for this sweater and it's such a nice yarn to knit with and wear.  The baby blue is a bit of a departure for me--and that's good too.  Must mix it up sometimes.

This picture is the truest image of the actual colour.

Nantucket Red

The second sweater is Bellevue.  I love it. 


Laura Chau's designs are so wearable and having the advantage of being able to try on her stuff makes it easy for me to decide if the pattern is right for me.  I also had Denny's fabulously fearless colour advice.  While I love orange, I wasn't sure if I could (should) wear it and she sagely noted it would look awesome with my hair.  And it does.


The yarn is Lorna's Laces Sock in Satsuma and it's made the perfect little summer sweater.


Now I'm getting back to the stuff I started before summer in preparation for (gasp) Fall.  I won't speak of the change of seasons again for a while.  I'm having a great summer and I'm not ready for it to end.

Re-entry is a cruel bitch

I'm back at work after two weeks of summer fun.  Relaxing summer fun.  It was sublime.

Sadly, I didn't win the lottery, get an unexpected inheritance or rob a bank so I'm back at my desk and life is crazy.

Craig started a new job in July, after a long period of unemployment and this is the first week that everyone needs to get going and get out of the house without that nice hot breakfast and pleasant morning that having a parent at home facilitates.  It's been a bit rough.

The kids are coming in to work with me to attend daycamp and while I like their company and they like their camps, it's a LONG commute:

  • 10 minute walk to subway
  • 25 minutes on TTC
  • 35 minutes of walking around campus(kids are at two locations

And then I do it all again on the way home.

Yesterday's walk gave me a wicked blister.  Not so good (but did necessitate a new pair of awesome shoes). 


Then on the way home, it rained.  Biblical, build an Ark rain.  Don't wear your nice new shoes rain.  Walk in your blister-giving crap shoes, then walk barefoot across campus rain.  Holy crap we're soaked rain.  We got home wet and blistery but still in an okay mood.

Then I discover one kid has lost a water bottle, the other goggles and Emma's good proper bathing suit is too small (really too small) and a bikini won't work for Aquatic camp.

Off to the store.  Bathing suit and goggles bought (next pair of goggles will be paid for by the child).  Lunches made.  In bed.

Up this morning feeling okay.  Until Xander tells me his head is very itchy.  I have a look. 



Comb out hair as best I can in 10 minutes.  Make note to get lice stuff on the way home.  Put bandaid on blister and start the trek again.

Tonight will be filled with soccer games and lice combing.  Sigh.

There is beer in the fridge--thank FSM.  I think I'll book a pedicure for Saturday.

I Love Summer

I'm on week 2 of a 2 week holiday and am in a wonderfully lazy mood.  Last week it was me and the kids and no car (Craig's started a new job which involves a bit of a commute and no holiday time for a while) and we had a whole bunch of fun on a staycation: beach, inline skating, Ontario Place (waterslides!), hanging around loafing (not to be underrated), local pool swimming--all good.

Then we went to Tweed to visit the kids' Grandfather and we got to do some more swimming, fireworks, hanging out by the fire and just relaxing.

This morning I did the laundry, repacked our cottage bags and we headed up to Oro-Medonte to my SIL's parents cottage to do more lazing.  



It's a fabulous place right on Lake Simcoe which we snagged in exchange for watching Ms Ruby Puppy for 10 days while their whole family went off to England.



I say puppy watching for lake front property is a fair trade.





Of course as a knitter, loafing time can be productive.  The loom is warped with yummy BFL from Briar Rose Fibers:


And I've got some very easy and fun knitting with me.



The pattern is Bellevue and the yarn, Lorna's Laces Sock in Satsuma.  I'm a few rows away from the armholes and hope that I can have this finished to wear to work.  

That is, unless I win the lottery and can spend most of my time like this.