Crafty update

It’s Good Friday and I am loving the Spring weather and the new foliage on the trees so much as peopple who follow me on instagram will know.  I have Good Friday and Easter Monday off work but they are sandwiching 2 very long days at work so I am cramming as much crafting as I can into today. I have a loaf of bread proving in the kitchen and while it does it’s thang woolly crafts beckon.

I currently have  3 projects on the needles, a pair of handspun socks for my sister Teresa, a pair of socks for my son Elliott and my Follow Your Arrow shawl which has been stalled due to lack of yarn.



I’ve done both clue 3’s with 3 repeats of 3a and I’m planning to do both clue 4’s so I have clue 4a and then 5a to do. The yarn is a 2ply, fingering weight, woollen spun yarn grown and spun on the island of North Ronaldsay where the beach dwelling  sheep feed on seaweed for most of the year. It is a very special yarn and has a wonderful rustic quality that I adore. I wanted this shawl to be huge, because I’m loving the yarn and the pattern, hence running out. As I couldn’t get any more yarn in the light grey colourway I decided to purchase 200g of the roving in the light grey and spin a replica-ish 2ply yarn to finish my shawl.


It smells so wonderfully sheepy and feels so divine I will have to get more and make an entire jumper.

The idea of spinning a replica yarn is making me a bit nervous so whilst the roving was in transit I decided to spin the second braid of a Thylacine BFL top to practice. I had finished the first yarn towards the end of last year and I’m currently spinning the 2nd of the 3 singles. The finished yarns will become socks for me.



I’m hoping to have this yarn finished by the end of next weekend so I can start spinning my North Ronaldsay yarn. Better crack on then! (Appalling egg pun totally intended) 😉


I’m usually adverse to labels and labelling as it’s usually followed by stereotyping and judgement which make my cringe but it just occurred to me that I might have unknowingly crossed a line.

I appear to have become a spinner who knits rather than a knitter who spins. When I say this I don’t infer any kind of level of expertise, heck I have so much to learn about both crafts that I think intermediate beginner is probably an exaggeration of my skill level. It just seems that given a choice I would much rather spin than knit. Put another way, knitting is something I do these days when I can’t spin. I absolutely could never see myself giving up knitting, never in a million years! However, my current WiPs only 1 knitting project and 4 spinning projects certainly give the game away.

Currently on my needles is Terra by Jared Flood. I’m really enjoying this knit even if last night I ripped back a huge chunk because I’d messed up the garter stitch edging on 2 rows. A testimony to my beginner skill level if ever there was one.

On the Hansen is the accent colour for a Dream Stripe shawl that I’m doing for the Spunout shawl SAL/KAL on Ravelry.


On my spindles are The Thylacine sock club fibre on the Turkish and my own blends on the Ken Ledbetter.


One thing I will always be though, is a woolista.

Stash Musings

Hello all,

I have a confession to make.

I haven’t even begun my cold sheep period and already I’ve fallen off the wagon. When I say I haven’t begun I mean I still have one more sock fibre club instalment and my Skein custom order to come. This week I treated myself to 2 skeins of the Yarn Yard’s BFL cashmere in fingering weight. It was the colour-way that got me hooked, it’s called leghorn. Yes Sonia, chuckle away, this colour-way is hen egg blue not duck egg blue and the reason I caved is that after seeing it on the internet once I couldn’t stop going back to the website to drool and covet.  This yarn absolutely has to be mine!

This week also saw my stash grow by one Fibre club instalment and one skein of forgotten yarn. Yes, you heard it right! My stash is not so sizeable that I forget what’s in it, so how could I forget a skein of yarn you ask? Well it was in it’s paper bag from the shop and tucked inside a handbag that hasn’t been used for months. The yarn? Oh yes, pardon me, it’s Pear Tree 4ply in yolk. Still on an egg theme but this time it’s yellow, which isn’t a colour I’m normally drawn to but this shade I like. This isn’t the best representation of the colour I’m afraid but it’s the best I could get.

I nostepindled it, because I can! (Yes I know nostepindle isn’t a word but an amalgamation of two words that Ursula, Sharon and I made up one crafternoon, we kind of prefer it). I’ve been Nostepindling a lot lately just for the sheer fun of it.

Today has been a day of fibre prep for my OWLS jumper. I can’t decide whether to flick a bit, spin a bit or flick it all then spin it all, it seems like an insurmountable task and I’m afraid to start in case I stuff it up.

I’ve also been musing about my relationship with my stash a bit. I think, I think of my stash as a woolly to-do list which is why it feels like it’s getting out of hand at times. This is odd seeing as I have a fair sized stash of patterns that don’t have that effect on me. Why is that? Anyway, I’ve come to the conclusion that I should relax and enjoy my mini yarn and fibre shop and stop fretting. This doesn’t mean that I’ve completely relapsed, no. I’m still going cold sheep, no more yarn or fibre this year!



In the nick of time

Yesterday I cast off Ian’s birthday scarf, washed it and laid it out to dry.  Today is his birthday. Phew! All that frantic, knitting like a crazy lady paid off.

I’m happy to report that he is every bit as pleased with it as I am (I confess I found myself coveting it on many occasions whilst knitting it). I also thoroughly enjoyed knitting it which is surprising because I usually find 1×1 rib a bit laborious. I think maybe the stripes and the tweediness did it.


I’m really tempted to cast on for a Noro scarf for myself. I have the yarn in my stash but I shall restrain myself for a little while until I’ve finished my other two current projects.

This morning I finished another WIP. The handspun fingerless mitts. I lovelovelove these. The yarn is utterly delicious and I spun it, all by myself! It’s the 2ply and N-ply Bond yarn from the 3 tops dyed by The Thylacine. Looking back at the post about the finished yarn it appears that I neglected to mention the colour-ways of the three Bond tops so I shall remedy that right away. Two of them were Terra Australis and the third bluer one was Lyrebird. Bond is such a gorgeous fibre I can’t recommend it enough. Knitting from my handspun yarn makes me so happy.

They didn’t photograph as well as the scarf but IRL they are really lovely. I added a few increases and decreases because I didn’t quite get gauge but mostly I followed the pattern. All I need now is some colder weather so I can wear them. The primary skein of Bond is probably going to be a cowl, I think this one.

Currently on the needles are the socks and the belated birthday gift for Fiona. On the wheel is still the second Skein singles, my thumb is all better so I can spin to my hearts content again (apart from the going to work thing to make money to pay the bills and maintain my  love affair with the fibre crafts).

As for the previous post, I agree, a simple cowl is exactly what that yarn needs to be. Thanks Jen and Anna for the advice.

ttfn x

The Thylacine Sock Fibre Club Feb 2012

I’m sure I’ve mentioned before how I want to spin my own yarn for socks. Ever since I learned to spin I think this has been a goal of mine and so when my favourite fibre dyer, Megan from The Thylacine announced she was starting a sock fibre club I jumped at the chance. I’ve never been part of a yarn or fibre club before but I felt it would be a good idea to push my boundaries and spin fibre for a purpose and also spin fibre that maybe I wouldn’t normally choose myself.

The first instalment was 55%superwash alpaca/25%superwas merino and 20%nylon, I chose 150g because I like longer socks and more is better.

I certainly wouldn’t have chosen to spin alpaca because during my learn to spin classes we were given some alpaca to try and I failed so dismally that I vowed never to spin alpaca again. This top however, I found stupidly easy to spin, happily so.


Did I mention green was one of my favourite colours?

So I spun 3 singles using my spinners’ control card which is a nifty little tool. Basically you multiply the wpi you require (so for sock weight 14) by the number of plies (3) and then the gauge from the card shows you how fine you need to spin (42) except it only goes up to 40 but I just tried to spin 40 or less.

I managed to 3ply 265 yards/130g which is more yardage than I normally get and is more or less 14wpi and the finest I’ve ever spun so I am really happy with it. I would like to get more yardage in future, tips on how to do this would be greatly appreciated.


The remainder of the singles became 50 yards of 2ply and then 6 yards of N-plied.


I want to knit this yarn up into socks immediately but as I’ve only just started the second Zauberball sock it might be a while. Obviously when I do I shall be using David’s toe up sock cookbook because I am a creature of habit. Come to think of it this pattern may also be big a reason for my hand-spun sock obsession.

Although March’s instalment is due soon I have been going through my growing fibre stash (I also succumbed to the regular The Thylacine fibre club, my bad!) and I have quite a few BFL tops that are now destined to become sock yarn. However, currently on the wheel is the second Skein singles, the first one was transferred from spindle to bobbin and looks like this…


A shawl in the making perhaps?

Stash enhancement

Hello all,

Sorry for not blogging for a while but I have been busy. I spent the last weeks of my staycation mostly on a health kick, exercising and suchlike.  I did indulge myself a little bit, I went to Ballarat for the excellent Vic beer festival with the wonderful knitting/spinning/beer-loving Sharon. I also spent some time noshing yummy foods with friends, but that all comes under psychological well being I reckon.

So far I’ve lost 3kgs and want to lose another 9kgs. Trouble is restricting your calorie intake isn’t easy when your a foodie/beer/cider/gin lover. If anyone has any recommendations for healthy and delicious recipes and/or blogs I’d love to hear them. To help keep me on track I have dangled a lovely knitterly carrot, which of course comes in the form of stash enhancement.

My first stash enhancement/reward includes, Shelter and Zauberball. In the photo there is also some Jamieson & Smith supreme jumper weight but it was ordered at the beginning of December and has only recently arrived so it pre-dates the health kick. I just wanted to include it in the photo.

This morning, however, I added my 100th stashed yarn to Ravelry, which was also my 20th handspun yarn. It’s a 3 ply worsted spun 9-11wpi yarn (due to thick and thin-ness).  I spun 3 tops from The Thylacine, 2 were Cormo that I custom ordered in a colour way called sunlight hits the snow. The 3rd a birthday gift from the lovely Sonia, Optim (stretched merino) in Colebrook, thank you again beautiful lady.

It was a wonderful coincidence that the Cormo that I ordered was such a perfectly beautiful match to the Optim in colour. The Optim also provides the yarn with a beautiful silky sheen to complement the rather matt Cormo. I’m now on the lookout for a pattern to show off this dreamy yarn.

I have another 3 Thylacine tops to spin into singles and ply but not until I’ve finished the Contiguous jumper. I’ll blog about Contiguous progress soon.

Well I’m off to burn 500 calories! ttfn x

Happy New Year

I hope you all had a merry festive season and found yourself in 2012 (gosh it’s weird typing that) safe and well.

I’d like to thank everyone who visited my blog and posted comments in 2011, it’s been fun and I would love it if you continue to follow my crafty, woolly ramblings in 2012.

Last year was an excellent year for craft. I took ownership of a Majacraft Little Gem and some hand carders and in the final days of 2011 I bought a sewing machine. I dyed fleece, tops and sock yarn. I learned to sew, completing 4 skirts and a bag. I started 30 knitting projects, finished 25 (if you count the first attempt at Idlewood). Two of these projects remain on the needles, Sam’s contiguous jumper and the hand-spun hexipuff blanket. Fourteen projects were gifted and ten made for me. I also spun 14 skeins of yarn 5 of which have been gifted. All in all I’m very pleased with my progress, even though there was a lot of frogging and I’m excited for more craft adventures in 2012.

Just like last year I began the year with some spinning and yesterday I spun up a Bond top that I purchased from and this morning I spun up another one.


I have another of the purple coloured top to spin tonight and then I plan to ply them together, no ideas as to what I will knit with the finished yarn though.  I am happy to say that my spinning skills have definitely improved since last year.

As for plans for this lovely new year, well, I’ve decided to buy some combs but I haven’t decided on which make. When I finally decide I shall comb the Polwarth and Corriedale fleeces and spin them up. So I shall be learning how to comb a fleece in 2012.

Also, I’ve been wanting to learn Fairisle knitting for such a long time and I’ve decided that this is the year for that. So, once Sam’s jumper and a scarf that I promised Ian are finished that’s my plan.  Other than that, I’m making no other knitting plans, I’m going to be spontaneous for a change and knit whatever takes my fancy, which for a pathological planner like me is something of an adventure. As for non-fibrey crafts, I’m hoping to continue to improve my photography skills and bread-making skills.

So here’s to a 2012 full of crafty promise.