Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Pleasant Plants

The garden is ready to be planted, and as you can see, so are the plants. These are organic tomatoes, peppers and cabbage patiently waiting to be put in the ground. It has been so warm lately that I feel like we are behind on our planting, but in reality we aren't. We are actually ahead!

Squash and more tomatoes.

The snowball bush is doing marvellous this year! It was loaded with blooms, although they were on the small side.

One of the larger blooms.

I crept under the snowball bush to see if there were any interesting shots to be had. It looked like a little tropical jungle under there.

It had rained recently so that added to the effect.

Ants doing their part. The peonies won't bloom without them.

The crane'sbill was gorgeous this year.

And look at the applemint! It is going to town! I am going to (one of these days) cut it all down and then hang it to dry. It will make some delicious tea.

The iris plants are doing well. And they smell magnificent, as always.

Comfrey. A very useful herb. It helps to knit the bones together when one has had a break/fracture.

The corn is probably twice this height now. It is growing so fast, between the heat and some rain now and then.

Another birthday present! But this one is from my cousin. Wasn't that sweet of her to give me a set of hand carders? I am looking forward to using them.

Dad picked these up recently. They are pretty neat, aren't they? They would come in handy for washing/soaking fiber. The bucket on the porch is an antique mop bucket. It is well made, and quite heavy.

I have no idea what type of flowering bush this is. I was going to my LYS and it was leaning over the sidewalk, practically asking to be photographed. It smelled great too. Anyone know what it is? Oh wait half a second, I believe this is a Weigela! If that is the case it is a huge one!
Nice color too. :)

My Birthday Present! And A Bit Of Spinning.

My birthday was about 3 weeks back so this is going to be old news to some. But I thought many of you would like to see what I am working on. My parents gave me a lovely birthday present, 5 skeins of Knit Picks Shadow Lace. It is 100% Peruvian wool.
Colorways: Springtime & Canopy.

I also received this book! I have been meaning to get it out of the library but kept forgetting to order it. I have looked through Clara Parkes book: Knitter's Book of Yarn and loved it.
The Knitter's Book of wool is perfect for a hand spinner! It tells so much about wool in general, but also discusses many breeds of sheep and the characteristics that are unique to the particular breeds. It is packed full of useful information, not to mention some gorgeous patterns! I had a three hour drive last week Thursday and took my new yarn and book along. I meant to jump right in to my knitting but first thought I would look up Icelandic sheep in my new book. Well, the knitting was forgotten for about an hour while I read my book. :) I still have a long way to go and much to learn, it will be an exciting read.

The yarn for my birthday was for a specific pattern, the Lillia Hyrna Shawl from: The Knitter's Book of Wool.

Somebody kept getting in the way while I was trying to do a photo shoot. I caught her in the act. Look at her! Paws right on my new book! She seemed to think that I should give her all my attention. This, by the way, is Sadie, my gorgeous Siberian Forest Cat. I haven't blogged about her, although I have been meaning to for the last 3 months. She is the sweetest, most lovable cat, with such an amazing personality. But I won't say anymore. I'll save my ravings for another post. :)

Here is another shot of my Lillia Hyrna shawl, as of this afternoon. I took my Grandma on errands today and there were a few snippets of time when I could squeeze in some knitting. I am about to switch back to color b. I simply love this shawl! The pattern so far has been clear and easy to follow. Although it is a lace-weight yarn it seems to be knitting up quickly. Thank you for such a special birthday present Dad and Mother!

Ooo,check this out! Ocean Splendor 2 on the spindle!

This corriedale was close to one of the last batches I dyed up with my Greener Shades Dyes. I was trying to duplicate Ocean Splendor. I came pretty close, but not quite. Well, since I had two of them, and I will be selling these, I figured that I should know how the roving spins up.
And it is wonderful. The corriedale fiber has a lovely, long, staple length. It drafts so smoothly, and I have discovered that hand-painted roving is so much fun to work with! I am spinning it up very fine. My aim is a lace or fingering weight yarn. I'm not sure what I am going to make with it though. Maybe another shawl?

And another spinning project on my large spindle. First about the spindle. My brother made both spindles pictured in this post. The fist one was a standard size. The one pictured above has a 3 3/16 " cherry whorl and a 14 inch shaft! It really should be for plying, but I am trying to see how much I can pack on it.

I already wound this off onto a bobbin and am now filling it again. This is the fine wool/llama that I purchased at the fiber festival. I really like the way it spins up. Very nice.
So those are my three projects right now. I'll update later when I get more accomplished.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

My First Fiber Festival!!!

Welcome to a photo tour of my first fiber festival! It was an exciting event and I was so thrilled to be able to participate and have a booth.

These gentlemen were obviously woodworkers. :) They were checking out the spindles and knitting needles that my brother was selling.

There were great booths there from all over the place.

Many wonderful yarns. Just look at some of those fascinating color schemes!

Another shot of some of my stuff. :)

Oooo, some great fiber here! I bought one of the blue/purple/brown roving. You can see it there on the top rack in the middle. It was 8 ounces of fine wool/llama for $15! a GREAT price and it spins up beautifully.

I love angora goats. I think I took a few too many pictures of these two, but they were so cute!

And some adorable alpacas too!

A sweet little sheep. I didn't take these pictures so I am not sure what breed he is

There was an adorable baby Icelandic sheep there, Gavin was his name. It was his first fiber fest, being only a week old and all! That is his mommy, Destiny, she was very protective as you can see.

Isn't he adorable? He kind of looks like the felted lambs I have been knitting!

A vendor spinning on her Ashford Joy

There were these great lavender plants too! Only $5 each and all different varieties.

An antique yarn winder.

I taught a lot of people how to spin on the drop spindle. There is something about spinning, it just draws a crowd. It was a thrilling thing to start so many people on their spinning journey. It was especially fun to see the young people when they finally got the hang of it.

Most of these pictures where taken near the end of the show. The crowd was pretty thin by then.

More delicious colorways.

More fiber festivals coming up in the future so stay tuned!