Tag Archives: yarn
There are many. Many, many, many. But currently topping the list is the fact that despite having mocked my fiber addiction for the past two years, she bought me these pretties:
It’s undyed alpaca yarn and it is gorgeous and soft and I just want to pet it lots. I feel spoiled 😀
On a related note, recently I decided
it would be fun instructional for some unknown reason to take a picture of my entire yarn stash, including WIPs.
FEBRUARY IS OVER. And there was much rejoicing.
For such a short month, Feb. sure does know how to pile on the busy. I’m going to start out with the busy-making/stressful/crummy stuff and move on to the good stuff 😀
- Two weekends of performance for the play I was directing, followed by an intense authoritarian takeover of the communal office. THERE WILL BE ORDER BECAUSE I DEMAND IT. Even if all the re-arranging threw out my back for a good week.
- Then there was that other week I spent in bed with a fever. Good times.
- Classes continue, now with weekly papers and midterms approaching.
- Practicum also continues; I take over class from the substitute, with mixed results.
- Work also continues, with tensions rising as we get closer and closer to achieving demonstration status. Oh, and one of my supervisors just left… Read the rest of this entry »
When it comes to the artwork, I is teh slowness. But here is a little bit of something I’ve been playing with. It is my dearest darling chewer-of-needles/sitter-upon-of-scissors/stealer-of-yarns. My huge KP order came today (YAY! YAY! I HAVE NEW YARN YOU GUYS ITS SO AWESOME! YAY!), but she hasn’t gotten into it yet…maybe I can keep it that way?
This, my friends, is sad yarn. This is yarn which was wound into very tight balls by an ignorant knitter and then left to strangle itself into a sorry state of limp, crunchy, decidedly un-smooshy-ness for months (or, in some cases, years).
Fortunately, there is still hope. Though eons of constriction have taken their toll on these brave skeins, they have not quashed the indomitable spirit of the fiber!*
If you, too, find yourself in possession of abused yarn, fear not. We can rehab it. We have the technology.
Well, so long as it’s primarily animal fiber, we have the technology. You’re on your own with plants and synthetics. See, animal fiber is a lot like your hair. Add tension and it straightens, lengthens, and gets kind of limp. Wet it again, and it relaxes to its original springy state. If you have curly hair, you know exactly what I’m talking about. If you have mostly straight hair but always have to flat-iron it after a shower to make itactually straight, you have a pretty good idea, too. If you’re bald…I got nothing. Grab the next person you see, make notes of their hair. Then brush it, and make more notes. Then shove them in a shower with some shampoo, and make more notes.**
Anyway.You’ll need a small tub or sink, some clothes hangers, Woolite (optional), water, a towel, and housemates who don’t mind you taking over the bathroom for hours on end.
Step 1: Skein
Chances are, if your yarn has been over-wound, it’s in a ball. Or this is rescue yarn from a frogged project, in which case it’s in a tangled, kinky mess. Either way, you need to re-wind the yarn into a good loose skein.
Make sure you loosely tie the skein in two or three places, otherwise you’ll end up with a nasty tangle faster than you can say “Elizabeth Zimmerman.”
Step 2: Submerge
Fill your tub/sink/bucket/stolen space helmet with lukewarm water. Aim more for ‘luke’ than ‘warm,’ especially if your yarn felts easily. If you want, you can add a little Woolite or other soap. My experiments have shown that Woolite tends to make the dyes bleed***, which can be a pain, so plan accordingly.
Then, dunk your yarn!
If you look in the lower right-hand corner, you can see bubbles trapped between the strands of yarn. This air-trapping property is what makes animal fibers so warm (both for the original animal and for the eventual recipient of the knitwear), but it’s not helpful when you really want to soak your yarn. To get rid of the bubbles, gently press the yarn down towards the bottom of the tub/sink/bucket/stolen space helmet, and hold it there until bubbles stop rising up. Be careful to press gently and try to keep the motion in one dimension (up-down) as much as possible. Agitating fiber in warm water tends to lead to felting, which is great if that’s your intent, but not so great if you actually want to be able to use this fiber again.
Step 3: Sabbatical
Leave your yarn to soak for half an hour to an hour, or the length of an episode of whatever TV show you’re currently addicted to. If you’re feeling really energetic, engage in a rousing game of Keep the Cat out of My Lunch (alternately titled Keep the Lunch out of My Cat).
Step 4: Suspend
Once you’ve rescued your lunch from the cat, it’s time to rescue your yarn from its bath. If you’ve used Woolite or some other soap, you’ll need to rinse the skein to wash out the soap. This needs to be done gently to avoid felting. I did this in a small tub in the bathtub, so I just fished the skein out, dumped the tub, refilled it with a little cool water, and gently pressed the skein in the clean water to get the soap out (you’ll probably want to do this a couple of times, dumping the tub and using fresh water each time).
Fold your skein carefully in a towel and press gently to remove excess water. Then, sling it over a hanger and sling the hanger over the nearest convenient towel rack.
Hopefully you have understanding housemates, because this generally incapacitates the bathtub for a good 24 hours (or more, if it’s humid out).
Also, if your yarn has bled at all, you probably want to put down a towel to catch the drips. Or you could spangle your bathmat with teal spots, but your housemates might object.
Step 5: Stroke
Pretty, smooshy rehabbed yarn! Try not to molest it too much in public.
Let us take a moment to appreciate the fact that in my house, even freshly-washed yarn is covered in cat fur. If anybody ever manages to turn cat fur into a bio-weapon, we’re doomed. I think two kittens and an adult cat could easily spread their fur around the globe within a week.
Happy rehabbing, and happy crafting!
*Hyperbole? Moi? Surely you jest.
**You can make these notes once the person it out of the shower. Unless your victim is attractive and unattached, in which case, go ahead and join them in the tub.
***My data: Rainbow Schoeller + Stahl Fortissima Colori Socka Color has a ridiculously long name, and bleeds if you soak it with Woolite. Rainbow Zitron Trekking sans Woolite does not. Green Trekking plus Woolite bleeds. Green Fleece Artist Merino 2/6 bleeds a little without Woolite and a lot with it. Blue Dream in Color Smooshy Sock bleeds a little with Woolite and not at all without it.
Totally published this last night, but apparently WordPress doesn’t believe that. Let’s try this again…
…or, a not-Random Act of Kindness. I couldn’t think of a good antonym for random so I went with comp-sci geekery.
Someone contacted me on Ravelry asking for five yards of black KP worsted to finish a project. I was more than happy to acquiesce, but just mailing five yards of yarn is awfully boring. So naturally I had to jazz it up a little 😀
Of course I should have sent this out days ago, but I’ve been laid low by yet another illness. When you work in public schools and have an underachieving immune system, these things happen.
…so of course that also got in the way of my grand plans for job hunting, but I’ve revived enough today to send in three more applications. I’m thinking 9 applications in 6 days still puts me on track to buy new yarn on Tuesday. Right? Of course it does. All’s fair in love, war, and yarn acquisition.
The Continuing Chronicles of Myriad’s Missing Motivation (woo, alliteration!)
So, about that whole job search thing. I feel like I don’t even have anything new to say about it at this point; it’s all just an increasing swirl of anxiety, terror, glumness, and/or defensive apathy, with occasional paradoxical flashes of pessimism and entitlement. As in, “Ahhhhh what will I do if I don’t get a job for next year I can’t spend another year like this one living with my parents is killing my soul ahhhh!!!!” and, “Well, I guess I’ll be able to stay with my AVID kids. And knit a lot. And the cat will be happy,” and, “Ahh scary panic attack imminent – oh, whatever, I don’t care, I’m not going to think about it, I don’t feel like applying for jobs today,” all topped off with either “No one will ever hire me!” or “I deserve a job, damnit!” depending on the day.
So, yeah. I’ve been trying to get something done every day, but the past few weeks have been difficult. I sort of fell out of my rhythm, and my failed attempts to get back in the groove led to the expected increases in insomnia and stomach acid production. (Dear body: I really can’t afford to lose more weight. Stop reacting to everything by making it difficult to eat.)
To get back in the groove, however, I have a short-term plan. I’ll worry about things beyond this next week when I have to; for now, I’m just going to take it a day at a time or else I will completely lose it. Therefore, oh readers (all…two? of you…oh and HI FBI!), I present to you THE PLAN:
Apply to at least one school (preferably three) each day through April 30th.
If I manage that, then I get to break my yarn fast and finally place an order for the yarn I need for my current list of gift knits.
If I manage to apply to multiple schools each day…I haven’t decided yet. Suggestions are welcome. And I need you, oh readers (HI FBI!), to help keep me honest.
3 schools: NMH, W, GDS. I won’t list the full names because I’d like to keep some pretense of anonymity out here in the interwebs…
Six more days to go. I think I can I think I can I think I can…
(This title would be better if I were wearing gold lamé leggings and far too much makeup whilst carrying my stripper heels. Seeing as I don’t own stripper heels, and wouldn’t wear them to my LYS if I did, you’ll just have to make do.)
So…I broke my yarn fast today.
I actually don’t feel too badly about it. Iintentionally went to my LYS store (bad idea, I know) to get a couple of giant skeins of acrylic for more granny square-ing:
Of course, Mom had to go and give me a 15% Off Yarn coupon. Why, mother, why???
Okay, I was actually pretty good. I got one skein of yarn, with a specific project in mind. It calls itself sport weight, but I would really call it heavy fingering…anyway, this is going to be version 3.0 of ASM, since I am determined to actually finish and publish Ye Damne Patterne.
It didn’t photograph well, but it’s actually a really pretty shade of pale green marbled with white and dark green and teal and brown. It’s Regia Nautica Color 6-ply, which I think is fairly new (and, again, is pretending to be sport weight but I don’t believe it).
So yes, I am a shameless yarn slut who broke her fast. But I didn’t break it too badly, did I?
…Look! Shiny of Distraction!
Made from awesome Doctor-Who-Scarf yarn – and from my stash, I will have you know. Also my first afterthought heel! (Necessary to get the striping to come out the way I wanted it).
What do you get when you combine Myriad, a camera, pointy sticks, and lots of scrummy yummy yarn?
You get a vast quantity of silly, of course, with a side of pretty pictures and a pinch of kitty torture.
To be fair, Rosie, those are my Christmas gifts you’re sleeping on. (There is a reason that box was hidden in the closet…) It’s a good thing everyone on my list was a cat lover, because in addition to a lovely hand-knit, they each received a large quantity of orange and white fur.
Speaking of Christmas knitting, it’s been so long since I posted about knitting that I haven’t gotten a chance to show off.
Thick wool socks for the male parental unit:
Totoro mittens for the BFF:
And a basic black hat for the GHMC, which I was unable to photograph before he absconded with it. Although you can see that Rosie was using it as a pillow in the first picture…
Other than that, I am full of fail, because I didn’t manage to finish the other gifts before the 25th. I am slowly but surely working on them…
Mom’s scarf is done now, but needs to be blocked.
I’ll block it once I finish the scarf for the male parental unit’s female parental unit.
I was hoping to have this done in time for Grandma’s surgery on the 25th, but that’s looking less and less likely. I will finish it by the end of January, however.
I also need to finish a pair of mittens for the other BFF. Mitu and the other grandmother got non-knit gifts, so at least I’m not in debt to them…
In an effort to decrease my number of WIPs (most of which I’m not terribly inspired to finish, truth be told), I decided after New Year’s that I am only allowed to start a new project once I finish an old one, which I’m hoping will keep me productive without going crazy. The current WIP is Grandma’s scarf, and the current new project is another design, which has more promise than ASM (although I do plan on coming back to that one day).
I am also (gasp!) going on a YARN FAST for the next several months, or until I find a full-time job for the 2012/2013 school year. I have a good sized stash (okay, it’s like two baskets) which I should try to make a dent in, and I really do need to get on this whole job thing; hopefully this will be a good incentive. Still, it’s quite alarming to tell yourself that you’re not allowed to buy any yarn for the forseeable future. The goal is to make it until May; we’ll see if I can last that long.
My last (sob!) yarn-and-supplies order arrived yesterday…at least I still have it to make me happy.
The Jane Austen mag was on sale, and considering how I’ve been lusting after the Kensington Mitts, and the fact that I’ll probably make at least half a dozen of the other patterns at some point, I think it was well worth $8.99. The pink and the blue/green/purple variegate will become worsted-weight socks, because January in WI is FRELLING FREEZING.
And what, you may ask, is any sensible person doing with yellow and black fingering-weight yarn?
You don’t really expect me to tell you my SOOPER SEKRIT plans, do you?
Daylight in the winter being so rare here, I took the opportunity to take a few pictures of some of my other recent projects, as well. And of course there was much silliness as I attempted to be artistic, and also bothered the cat.
So what silliness have your sticks and string produced of late?