Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Sit and Spin!

Jacey Boggs of Insubordiknit sent me her amazing dvd for my review. First, let me say, that I have never had ANY interest in spinning "art yarns". Little did Jacey know just how hard this sell was gonna be.

At first, I was a little put off by the eyeball yarn images on the front cover. I think I'm just under the wire of a month to get this review out because I had some major reservations on all the new-fangled stuff.

The wonderfully filmed, shot and organized video was so instructive I would have to say that in each of the 39 chapters I learned something completely new. Between each chapter, which was comprised of individual segments on related techniques, you get to watch the best, silliest fibery music videos. Just enough of a breather to get you to the next technique.

The 5 types of techniques she covers are Puffs, Coils, Wraps, Loops and Foriegn Objects. In each segment you have the ability to watch a video loop of the technique. Yay!

I watched this whole dvd straight through without actually spinning, which might be a good idea so that you'll have your materials set up and think about what you might like to try. The way the video it shot gives you the best possible view on what's going on. I would even say that it's better than an actual class. Jacey does each technique at different speeds and shows you the crucial steps in making this work. My only question is, don't her students (in the video) every talk? (Two silent students flanking her.)

Sure, classes are great but I have to say that having this in your library would take the place of many many classes. All in all, I have to give major praise to Jacey for every excellent aspect of this kick-ass dvd.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

The Last on the Block

There are trends in knitting and then there are TRENDS in knitting. In this case, I am probably the only knitter I know who has not knit a Clapotis. Pronounced Clap-oh-tee. It appeared in Knitty in 2004 and here it is 2009. Better late than never.

I have to say that one of the things that held me back is that I really hadn't seen one I loved. It was an issue of yarn. Wool is generally just not drapey enough. That even goes for the one they used for the sample in the photo.

I chose rayon. I order a lot of this rayon from Yarntopia Treasures on Ebay. The type of base yarn they use has finally become consistent and it's a really good deal. The way it is with handdyed yarns though is that you never know how it's going to knit up. Especially with a pattern like this. So, I had one skien and I had sold the second one to my friend Duffy, months ago. I thought I'd try it scarf width to see if I'd enjoy knitting it.

You know what happened next. I ran out of yarn. I ordered new yarn and the color was off and then I asked Duffy if she would trade me. My buddy not only agreed on the trade by she drove it right on over, to my lame protests. She of course is laughing right now because of course I spent the weekend finishing my Clapotis so that I could wear it.

This one was so much fun to knit that I've started another one, full width. The colors on this one really "pop" and I'm rather pleased with it.

There are less satisfying projects in the works as well, right now. I'm hoping that some time with the knitting gals tonight will help me get over my pattern struggles.

I'd like to end this post on a serious note though. I knitter that I have known from my online knitting community for many years, Witt, just passed away. It was unexpected to us all and I am here to tell you that knitters are just the most wonderful people and Witt was one the of the best. We will all miss him.