Sunday, November 30, 2014

Comfy socks

I've used my Mystery yarn (see this post), to knit some soft comfortable socks :)

Knitted toe-up and two at the same time on one circular needle. Added some half-brioche at the top.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Secret Smorgling Challenge: Knitting part 2

The doll has feet and hair now :).
I made the feet like mini-socks with some white and a bit of the Beryl-green. (filled them already on this photo)

For the hair I've sewn on strands of yarn around the grey edge, then sewn strands on the top. (see photo...)
It's a special hairstyle for a special doll...

One sketch a day: 13 - 16

4 days with sketches from memory, filled with zentangles.
I used pencil, black marker and white gell pen...
Worked two days on the large drawing left :)

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Secret Smorgling Challenge: Knitting part 1

I decided to do a fun (first?) project for the challenge: a doll!
I started the head with the dark grey yarn and the tan-colored yarn. The body is knitted with batt-dropping yarn.

Used 'white rabbit' for the panties and continued the legs with a striped yarn from the mixed merino packs. I'm knitting them two at a time on a circular needle, using one strand from outside and one strand from the inside of a center-pull ball... (The colors of the second half of the yarn are spun in reversed order to make that possible.)

This will become a lovely big-headed big eyed doll. I've ordered some big safety eyes for her and have to wait with knitting the arms until they arrive.
I'm not using a pattern so the final result will be a surprise for me too :).

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Secret Smorgling Challenge: Spinning part 3

The final yarns from this box:

I  had an idea for a project, but after spinning I'll have to change it a bit. Some yarns came out very different than planned :).

These are the fibres/yarn photo's:

N-ply 27m/15g

3 ply 46m/18g

N-ply 64m/28g

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Dyeing wool

I had some time to dye wool for sock-yarn yesterday:

Some super-soft super-wash Merino, blues to make socks for a man:
100g Superwash merino
 And happy colors for the girls:
100g superwash merino

100g Devon
I'm searching for the perfect wool to spin and knit long-lasting socks. That's why I buy some less-known wool sometimes. The Devon-wool feels a bit coarse but OK for socks, I can't wait to see how this spins up...

One Sketch a day: 9 to 12

Day 9:
Timmy in ballpoint.

Day 10:
A cat with glasses :), color pencils

Day 11:
More Shaun the sheep in ballpoint

Day 12:
A cute dog in color pencils

Photographed outside and still dark, it's cloudy in Belgium...

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Secret Smorgling Challenge: Spinning part 2

The first batt: "Bilberry Zest" is 90% Merino and 10% Silk. The colors are green, orange and purple.
This is very nice fibre and easy to spin a fine single.
Ready to ply

I made this gradient 2 ply yarn:

This was my lovely batt-dropping: greens, blue, pink...

Made this n-plied yarn:
I'm now starting the mixed merino packs, to make self-striping yarn.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

One sketch a day 5-8

Day 5: Another kitten
Experimenting with color pencils and  my sepia pen, it works on the paper but the pen bleeds trough the thin paper :(

Day 6: Baby meerkat
Those animals are so cool! This is a quick sketch in blue pencil and micron pen.

Day 7: a butterfly
Experimenting with color pencils.

Day 8: another labrador puppy
Just pencils, charchoal pencil and the white Signo pen again :)

Monday, November 17, 2014

New design: We have cookies!

I published this new sock design on Ravelry today:
There's a promotion of 30% until november 20th !

These socks are knit from the cuff down, you can find the pattern here.
They are for my daughter, she loves cookies and hand-knitted socks ;).

Handdyed and handspun socks

Sometimes I buy white fibre to dye and spin. It takes more work than just buying a beautiful braid or batt, but it's fun to do.

This is 100g sw BFL, the colors used are: blue, emerald, brown and black.
I wanted to make sock yarn (because of that the super wash...), and 2 skeins to start two sock at the same time. The yarn is a regular 3-ply, but I really mixed the color-repeats.

The socks are a knitted toe up and two at a time, I made them with a wide rib pattern for a good fit. They are for my son, he's wearing them on this photo:

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Secret Smorgling Challenge: Spinning part 1

I'll need different small skeins for my project. To start I made combinations of a blended top sample and 2 colors from a mixed roving pack:

Skein 1: 3 ply with 2 singles "March Hare" and 1 single from the two mixed rovings.
I hold the rovings side by side and draft them together, this blends the colors over all the yarn.


Skein 2:3 ply with 2 singles "Antique Rose" and 1 single from the two mixed rovings.

Skein 3: 3 ply with 2 singles "Cobweb" and 1 single from the two mixed rovings.


Saturday, November 15, 2014

One sketch a day: day 2, 3, 4

The first 4 sketches are done. I've chosen my favorite animals and have drawn them from a photo on the web.
Day 2: turtle
Day 3: labrador 
day 4: kitten

These drawings took each almost one hour to complete. For the last two I didn't use a charchoal pencil, this makes those drawings 'softer'. It's very hard to take good photo's of pencil drawings, and the weather is very dark in Belgium... I still have to make my drawing for today, I'll do that this evening :)

Secret Smorgling Challenge, the start

For this challenge you have to use all the fibres of a "Secret Smorgling" box in one project! the Smorgling is a box with 160g random fibres sold by Nunoco on Etsy.

So.... a box filled with surprises... a spinning challenge... and a designing challenge? I'm in :)

This is the contents of my Smorgling:

- 25g Bilberryzest
- 25g batt dropping
Blended tops:
- 10g Antique Rose 
- 10g White Rabbit
- 10g Cobweb
- 10g Goosebumps
- 10g March Hare
- 10g Beryl
Mixed roving packs:
- 25g Rockpool
- 25g Robin Hood

the Blueberryzest Batt, so lovely, will make a fine gradient yarn...

Batt-dropping, looking forward to spinning this :)

I like the combination of fibres, the colors are mostly light and natural. It looks like a forest-theme to me... 
I had a few ideas for a project in mind, but after looking at this fibres, I think I know what this Smorgling wants to be...I'll have to make a few different yarns, so starting the spinning yeah....

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Mystery yarn finished

I plied and washed the singles from the mystery fibre (blogged here), it made 271m/108g, I think DK-weight yarn.

It feels soft, probably because of the rolag-preparation and semi-woolen spinning. The colors have a nice variation of blues and browns in it. Don't know what to make whit this it goes in my yarn-stash for now...

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

One sketch a day, Restarting the drawing habit: Day 1

Yesterday I went book-hunting on our yearly book "festival" in Belgium: "De Boekenbeurs".  One of the books I brought home is this little "One sketch a day" notebook. It could be just what I need to start drawing reguraly again...

You can see that the drawing space is small, 7 x 12 cm for each day. (about the size of a playing card)
I'm really looking forward to drawing something small each day. We'll see if I can keep up with it for a whole year....

For my first drawing I looked up a photo of an owl.... don't really know why, I just like them :)
I found this picture on Pinterest:
And this is my first drawing:

I used graphite pencils, charcoal pencils, a very fine Micron pen and a white Signo uni-ball marker.
So much fun to draw again :)

Mystery yarn

I think almost every spinner has some 'mystery fibres' or wool waste lying around. It's time to spin some of that up.
First I selected the blues and some natural colors, for a total weight of 111g.
There's some silk in it, Merino and I think Corriedale, but all te rest is unknown...

Wool waste 111g

I carded the fibre with my hand carders and made little rolags. I randomly took a bit of every fibre to put on the carders. So every rolag is different :)

Hand carded rolags

I decided to make a regular 3 ply so made 3 groups of rolags, each 37g and started spinning my singles.
I use a half - woolen methode of spinning, supporting the thread (and controlling the twist) with my left hand and holding the fiber (moving backwards) with my right.
These are the 3 singles on my Lazy Kate:

Ready to ply :) I'm looking forward to seeing the yarn, I've no idea what it will look like...

Friday, November 7, 2014

Shetland/Corriedale socks

I've been dyeing some wool this summer. Two of those fibres were 65g shetland and 40g corriedale wool.      I decided to use them together and knit some nice warm socks...

But first the spinning...

65g shetland dyed in blue/green/purple and pink
The singles on my wheel
This fibre was divided in 4 strips and spun end- to end.
The singles were N-plied to make 190m self-striping yarn.

Finished yarn

I also had 40g light blue corriedale fibre, and overdyed it with blues.
I spun a fine 2 ply yarn, 222m.

The two yarns are used together to knit these socks. They are not super-soft but it's ok for my feet.
I started the toes with the shetland and then added blue stripes, with double yarn.                                      The sock pattern is very simple but effective:
I cast on at the toe, make toe increases and continue until a height of 13 cm. Then I increase for the heel gusset. I put the sock on and decide to stop the gusset when I'm almost at the end of the heel. Then I knit a small heel-turn with short rows over the middle of the heel stitches.  The heel flap is knitted back and forth, knitting the side stitches together with the gusset until there are no more gusset sts left. I often use slip-stitches in the heel flap for strenght. The leg can then be knitted until you run out of yarn :)

shetland-corriedale socks

These are very warm socks :) The striping worked well and I will use it more in future sock-projects.

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