Monday, September 29, 2008

Going OFFF Again

The big weekend started with a little get together with some friends we RARELY see.
Richard, against the backdrop of a favorite diner, The Roxy.

The fabulous Gary, taking pictures as I was.

Barb and Duffy taking photos at the same time! (Roger was so animated, his picture just came out as a blur.)
Here is Barb, in front of her Journey Wheel, showing a youngun' how to spin fiber by just rolling it on your knee.
Here's Bobbie, organizer extrodinaire and queen of the buttons.A lot of folks LOVE these baskets and buy them in the bunches.
This is the first time I've bought kid mohair locks, dyed. I'm not a big mohair fan but the kid is much softer.
This is the same fiber, picked by hand into clouds for spinning.
Deb bought this sweet bunny, but much to her and our sadness, Liesel didn't make it through the night. To her left is Michelle LB and Tammy on her right.
This is my little old wheel going home, safely in the backseat, all strapped in.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Projects are Bustin' Out All Over!

It has come to my attention that my UFOs have reached critical mass.
In an effort to stave off knitting disaster, and make myself look like an aimless, slovenly knitter I have taken on the task to plow through as many as I can.

Here we have some finished Merino inpaled with a swawl stick that I picked up a the the TNGA show.

This is the start of my spinning the fiber I got in Sweden. It's really got a lot of noils, and I'm using it as texture to my advantage
This is my Prepster jacket. The first garment that I've ever crocheted, featuring buttons made by my dad many years ago.
This is a sweater that should be done today, from IK Fall 2003, Lace-Edged Raglan by Deborah Newton, knit in Ella Rae Classic
This is the first completed Nutkin sock in Wollmeisse, with the second to be finished this week.
This is sock one of a design I'm working on, using Araucania Ranco Multi.
This is something I haven't touched in a while but will go back to next week, a Trident Lace sock by Gardiner Designs in Koigu.
There are other major UFOs out there, but these are the ones I am plowing through right now, before I'm allowed to start something new.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Crafts in Sweden

This is "Old Linkoping", kind of like a local Colonial Williamsberg recreated village right in the main city limits
I liked the architecture and this red paint on many of the buildings is particular to Sweden, iron ore, I suspect.
Here is a nice tea garden within the village, overrun with sparrows, searching for leftovers.
Very interesting sunburst design above carriage entry door.
What I mostly knitted on was this sock, Nutkin knit in Wollemeise. I took the picture in bright late day sunshine and it just didn't nearly translate in a picture.

This is my final installment on the Swedish trip. I didn't mean to let this go, but I wanted to cover the most important part to my readers, which was the fiber related stuff. I put off the trip to this craft museum/store: Hemslojden (HemSLAden). Before I knew it, it was my last day, a Saturday. Little did I know that shops there close early on Saturday or I would have set out earlier for this adventure.

Simply, it was heaven. I'm sure that many folks who visit this place just love to look around and there's probably not that many actual crafts people who make it to this corner of paradise.

They had some localy produced wool yarn, some roving meant mostly for felting and some linen embroidery kits. The needlework in terms of costumes used so many techniques, including hand felted wool used as trim for mittens and such and then embroidered. Just amazing!
This is what I ended up buying: green heathered locally spun mohair wool blend, still a little oily, some red wool for spinning (a bit rough) and two 50 gram batts of what I expect is Polwarth! These sort of details were unavailable at the shop.

It seems from the abundance of old spinning wheels in second hand shop windows that spinning is a familiar thing to Swedes, but not something that many people actually do there today. Nothing like the US. We've got it going on, people! Of course, learning and being inspired by their tradition is what it's all about though.

This is the onsite barn/cafe with freshly made waffles.
Me, having a blissful moment knitting at the crafts center. When I was taking the picture above of my fiber purchases, a woman who works there, Gudrun actually came over to talk to me. In my whole THREE WEEKS in Sweden, it was the first and only time a stranger came over to talk to me. And, did we ever talk. It was great fun and she was excited to talk about knitting and spinning.

Leave it to the fiber folks to make the connection.

I also ended up purchasing two sweaters from a second hand shop. The tan one is at least 20-40 years old and the other is an old Dale of Norway that was really worn (but not worn out) and needs a little repair. Both fit perfectly and I'm excited to put them into use this Fall.