Life in the Round

An exploration of my life as I know it. Knitting, working, creating, and cat-wrangling.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Elvis Costello Charts




Many, many years ago a friend of mine showed me what she was doing with two sticks and some yarn. She was making a scarf. I thought, well, I can go out and buy a scarf; why would I want to take the time to learn this "granny" craft you call knitting? Then, one day at Barnes & Noble, I saw a book called Stitch & Bitch. It was a knitting book for "my generation". I flipped through the patterns, my jaw dropped and page-flipping stopped when I saw the Skully Sweater. Wait, I can make something as cool as this with two sticks and yarn?! Ok. I'm sold. I quickly bought this book, some sticks, and some yarn. That night I taught myself to knit from that book and was quickly making my first scarf (two colors even!). That was early in 2005.

That same summer, some good friends of mine were getting married. They are both music enthusiasts (we all had worked together at the record store I manage), and I knew I wanted to knit them something wonderful. Being so new to the craft, I had no idea that the projects I wanted to make were waaaaaayyyyy beyond my skill level. After all, the only project I had made so far was a garter stitch scarf and several 4x4 inch swatches practicing stockinette stitch. Such is the bliss of ignorance!

I (with the help of, my then boyfriend, Ray) charted out the design for two intarsia pillows. His favorite band, D.R.I.; and her favorite artist, Elvis Costello. It was a very ambitious task, but I persisted. I made his pillow first (twice, since the first time I had to rip the entire front back) and was able to work out the "kinks" of the process. Her pillow turned out nicer looking, but they're both equally loved.

This was a very long-winded way of saying that I have gotten a lot of requests for the charts on the Elvis Costello pillow. So many, in fact, that I have put it up for sale on Ravelry. It's not very expensive, only $1.99, and you get a chart for the front (his face) and two for the back (his name).  Right now it’s only available on Ravelry, since I don’t know how to put the “buy now” button on my blog.  If I get that figured out then you won’t have to have a Rav account to purchase it.  However, if you’re a knitter and you’re interested in things, like Elvis Costello, and you DON’T have a Ravelry account; then get your butt over there and sign up!  It’s free and you’ll meet so many other cool knitters like yourself that your head might explode!  We could all use that every now and then.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

The Reveal

So I’ve been sitting on a secret.  One that I couldn’t reveal until today.  It’s been pretty hard not to talk about, but I didn’t think I could say anything until I had a link to give.  (This is kind of a lie, I’ve already gushed to my close friends about it, but they are good at keeping secrets.)

Today, I am amongst the elite.  Cookie A., Norah Gaughn, Annie Modesitt, Veronik Avery, Kate Gilbert, etc. are all gathered in the same location as me.  If you don’t know any of these names, then this next bit of news might not be a big deal to you, but I’m wetting myself. 

The news:  I have been published in KNITTY!!!!!!!!!!!!  Of course my pattern doesn’t rival the genius of the aforementioned designers, but I’m just glad to be swimming in the pool with them.  My pattern is in the Summer ‘09 issue as a part of the Head-start on the Holidays edition.  So not only am I in Knitty, but I’m part of a brand new feature for the magazine!

I shall not take all the glory however.  My beautiful friend, Maura, took all the gorgeous photographs of my project.  Pictures weigh heavily in the decision to include a pattern, so I’m very grateful to have such a talented photographer to call upon.

I’m so proud of us!  Go check it out and make some of the awesome patterns (mine too if you want) that are featured.  If you don’t knit, check it out anyway and marvel at the amazingness of all these wonderful designers!

Friday, May 22, 2009

Holy Flowers & Showers! It’s the May Phat Fiber Box!


This time around they had all fiber boxes!  I totally scored one.  It’s chock full of fibery goodness and beautiful colors.  As seen above, the theme this month was Flowers & Showers.  So let’s take a look at what I got:


Vendor:  The Yarn Side

Fiber:  Baby Alpaca/Merino

Color:  Lilac Skies

Weight:  0.1 oz

Thoughts:  Super soft, great color (although I’m not sure where the lilac part comes in), and really cute packaging!


Vendor: Girl on the Rocks

Thoughts:  These stitch markers are really cute, and functional! 


Vendor:  Fiber Gift Tags

Thoughts:  These are very well designed, and the icons she uses are adorable.  I’ve had plenty of times when I could have used these, and I’m really glad she’s got different tags for different crafts. 


Vendor:  Banana Migraine Designs

Thoughts:  Very cute marker, a little different than what I usually see.  That’s not a bad thing!


Vendor:  Fickle Knitter Design

Thoughts:  A really pretty stitch marker and the card it’s on is soooo sparkly!  Very eye-catching!


Vendor:  Greenwood Fiberworks (beware this link, while this bookmark is cute, there is some simply amazing fiber and yarn at her site.  No lie.)

Thoughts:  An adorable bookmarker with a hand painted yarn tassle.  It also came with a coupon for $5 off a $25 purchase!


Vendor:  Unknown

Thoughts:  Jessie of Phat Fiber had a local artisan make these needle rolls for her.  They’re very well made and the fabric is super soft!  Thanks Jessie!


Vendor:  Goodness Gracious

Thoughts:  A very useful little bag with a sheep batik.  The paint soaked through to the back, which kinda sucks, but I’m sure I’ll find a use for it anyway.


Vendor:  Calizona Designs

Fiber:  Merino

Color:  Spring Rainbow

Weight:  0.1 oz

Thoughts:  Great rainbow color, nice soft fiber, and it came with delicious smelling lip balm!  Great logo too, I love pin-up girls!


Vendor:  Beesy Bee (cute name and card!)

Fiber:  Wensleydale Wool/Local Mohair/Suri Alpaca/Angelina Fiber

Color:  No name given, but it goes from light pink to dark purple with bits of purple and green angelina

Weight:  0.33 oz

Thoughts:  I love the color of this.  The picture is lying, the color is much more vibrant!  It’s also very sparkly, which the picture doesn’t really show.  I can’t wait to spin this!


Vendor:  Giffordables

Fiber:  Silk Noil and Corriedale

Color:  Stepping Stones

Weight:  0.5 oz!

Thoughts:  I’ve seen these generous batts in others boxes before and always wanted one.  Finally!  I’m glad I got this color too, it’s not one I would have thought I’d like, but in person it’s really quite lovely.  I think the colors will blend nicely once it’s spun as well.  The link above will take you to her etsy listing where you can buy one of each .5 oz sample she sent in, 2 oz total for $5.50!  Not a bad deal and there’s different fibers for each sample.

DSCF4276 DSCF4277

Vendor:  Vines

Fiber:  Wool/Bamboo/Dash of nylon icicle

Color:  Fool in the Rain

Weight:  0.2 oz

Thoughts:  SOFT!  Great color too, this is one of my favorite samples!


Vendor:  Bohemian Knitter Chic

Fiber:  Romney Locks

Color:  No name given, but one is electric green and the other is purple and blue

Weight:  0.3 oz

Thoughts:  I’ve never spun locks before, they kind of scare me a little.  I may seek a little help with spinning this (either from you tube or a friend).  I love the colors though, very vibrant!


Vendor:  Silver Sun Alpacas

Fiber:  100% Alpaca

Color:  Both are un-dyed, cream and dark brown (with traces of lighter brown)

Weight:  Brown= 0.1 oz; Cream= 0.2 oz

Thoughts:  These natural colors are gorgeous, and the fibers are soooo soft!  They came in a really cute sachet too, which I will use for lavender after I spin these up.


Vendor:  Maude & Me

Fiber:  New Zealand Merino

Color:  Wellington’s Wednesdays

Weight:  0.6 oz!

Thoughts:  I LOVE blue.  And New Zealand.  And this fiber.  ‘Nuff said.  (p.s. Although this shop is in New Zealand, she has FREE SHIPPING!  Let’s help a Kiwi out!)


Vendor:  7 Yaks Design

Fiber:  100% $%&*ing CASHMERE!!!

Color:  No name given, it’s Hot Pink though!

Weight:  0.2 oz

Thoughts:  I’ve never had (let alone, spun) pure cashmere before.  I’m floored at the generous amount as well.  It came in an adorable, stickered bax too (box + bag= bax!).  I’m excited and scared by this sample.  I’ll have to pm the owner and ask her how I would go about preparing to spin this so I don’t ruin it.


Vendor:  H.A.Y. (Hampton Artistic Yarns)

Fiber:  BFL Wool

Color:  Salvia

Weight:  0.3 oz

Thoughts:  First, I love the logo!  Second, the orange in this roving is Blaze Orange, my camera didn’t get it bright enough.  I’ve never seen a salvia plant in bloom, but this sample reminds me of a pumpkin.  Maybe I’ll bake it! ;)


Vendor:  WC Mercantile

Fiber:  Superwash BFL

Color:  Flowers and Showers

Weight:  0.3 oz

Thoughts:  This batt had some hidden colors that were under the label.  Gorgeous blues and hidden greens and blacks!  Very dark, I love it!


Vendor:  All Twisted Up

Fiber:  Wool & Mohair

Color:  Neon Twist

Weight:  0.3 oz

Thoughts:  More black!  Yay!  This is a great little braid and these colors would look amazing plied back on themselves.  Will probably have to order some of this.


Vendor:  Infinity Yarn and Fiber

Fiber:  Merino/Mohair

Color:  New Growth

Weight:  0.333 oz (very precise)

Thoughts:  The colors in this really remind me of spring.  Buttery yellow, golden orange, and the green of a budding tree.  Well captured Infinity!


Vendor:  Desert Garden Farms

Fiber:  Homegrown Lincoln Lamb/Kid Mohair (animals Fancy and Ozzie are featured on the label. I’m pretty sure this is their fiber)  I also spy some angelina

Color:  Tiptoe through the Tulips (LOVE IT!)

Weight:  0.4 oz

Thoughts:  This Tumbleweed Batt (what a fun name!) is the perfect blend of pinkish-orange and greens.  I can tell this is going to be a quick spin and I’ll have to get some more to satisfy my fibery urge.


Vendor:  Mary Jane’s Attic

Fiber:  Corriedale

Color:  No name given, but as you can see, there’s purple, blue, yellow and green.  ;)

Weight:  0.3 oz (all colors together)

Thoughts:  They want me to make felt beads out of this, I’m not sure if I want to.  I don’t really have much use for felt beads, unless they become cat toys.  I’ll probably blend these with another sample.  The colors are very even and bright and the business card is cute too.


So, 17 fiber samples, plus stitch markers, bags, coupons, and a pattern (I forgot to take a picture of it, it’s for a knitted wristband).  Not too bad, Phatties!  After I get settled into the new place, I hope to acquire some more fiber from several vendors.  Off to bookmark!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Commencement, Pride, and Relocation

Oh Blog.  So much has happened since we last spoke.  Much of it was not visually documented, but will be remembered for at least the next month or until someone reminds me of it.  The ironic thing is that if I spoke to you more frequently, you would remember it for me for all time.  Alas.

I do have some picture to feed you share with you though.  It’s been busy around here and doesn’t seem to be getting any calmer over the next couple weeks. 

First, my darling, sweetie-pie Ray graduated from college (with high honors!) on Friday with an Associates Degree in IT-Computer Network Specialist!


See, look how happy he is!  He’s worked so hard these last two years (and technically still has 3 generals to finish, but will be taken care of soon), and I’m so proud of him!

My parents and our friends Matt, Janet, and Jen joined us for a very long, boring ceremony (except when Ray walked on stage and we all screamed like banshees)  *he said he never heard us up there :(*  They are truly great friends.

Ray didn’t really feel like going out after a long, people-filled day.  So instead he and his friend (and fellow graduate) Cary did this:


Who knew Mormons drank and played Guitar Hero? 

Sam partied too, in his own way.


This machine runs on Kitty Power!

Ahhhhh, anyway.  It was a good night and I think we’re all glad it’s over.

Moving on, I finally finished my Pride shawl from way back when.  It was my first all lace project and it was really fun.  I think it turned out pretty nice.  Here it is before blocking:


I really like the cabled edge, and of course all the holes.  I even didn’t mind the cleverly disguised bobbles, called nupps.


Most of all, I love how the color changes.  It’s the gradiance line from The Unique Sheep.  From gold and orange/red, to pink and purple.  Beautiful!


I’ll probably be blocking this later this week when I have a day off, that way I can make sure it doesn’t become a cat bed.

Not that I’ve been overly talkative on here as of late, but that trend won’t be changing anytime soon.  We’re moving in a couple weeks and we have an amazing amount of “stuff”.  And it all needs packing.  I’ll be sure to post pictures of our new place (a slightly larger apartment, with the added bonus of a private basement!  One that DOESN’T have black mold growing in it!).  We’re pretty excited to be moving into a quieter area and away from all the college nonsense.

So the next time you hear from me, I might not have much hair left, but I should be relocated!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Samples Spun and Lessons Learned

I’m a little behind with the fiber posting.  Since I last posted, my birthday has come and gone.  It was a good day/weekend spent with friends, music, food, and alcohol.  Lots of fun.  So much, that I didn’t take any pictures so you’ll just have to believe me that I had a good time.  For my birthday, Ray got me a new drop spindle.  THAT I got a picture of.

DSCF4176It’s from Zebisis Designs and I LOVE it!  It’s got a carved black hardwood shaft and a green Brazilian Agate whorl.  She even put a notch on it for me.  My spindle came with a sample of fiber (as well as a larger one thrown in for my birthday!)


The blue is 65% mulberry silk/35% silk noil and the green is a blend of Bamboo, Corriedale, SW Merino, Cashmere, and Firestar.  It’s so pretty it deserves a close-up.


Free fiber aside, you should really check out Zebisis.  The owner, and sole proprietor, Mayisha is so nice and her spindles and fiber are gorgeous!  I keep going back to her shop to see what’s new, but I’ve had to stop recently because I can’t afford to buy anything.  It’s so hard not to.

As I posted early in March, I received a Phat Fiber box.  With my new spindle I’ve been playing with some of the fiber samples.  Here’s what I’ve done so far:


This is the Extreme Spinning BonBon, and my first attempt at plying.  I had a little trouble spinning this one.  I think my drafting was uneven and so some spots are thicker and less spun than others.  This made plying difficult because it kept breaking at those weak points.  Lesson learned and tucked under the belt.  Another thing I learned from this first skein, is that I LOVE plying!  Ohmygod!  It’s sooooo much fun and watching the colors twist together and contrast each other is so rewarding.  I find myself wanting to ply my commercial yarn just to see what it does together.  Anyway.  Next.


This attempt went much better.  This is the Fox Hop sample (Corriedale Cross, Shetland Fleece, SW Merino, Alpaca, Bamboo, Sea Cell, and Angelina) plied with the Teresa Levite sample (Shetland Wool/Tussah Silk).  I was able to spin this a little thinner and didn’t have any problems with breakage when plying (which I still love).  I need to get a WPI tool, but my best guess is that this is a bulky weight and is about 11 yds.  Not bad for a sample.

Yesterday, I spun this little beauty up.


This is the East Kentucky Fibers sample.  There were five mini samples in different colorways and one large natural sample.  I spun the five colored samples into one single and plied it with the natural.  I added the Moonlight and Laughter sample from the January box to this because I thought the colors would fit in and I didn’t have a whole lot of it.  I think this threw off the ratio of color to natural.  I ended up with a yard or two extra of color and so I took the end and plied it with itself.  That’s why you see some sections that are not twisted with white.  I’m not sure how strong that will be, and I may end up cutting it off, but it looks really nice in a skein.  This ended up as a worsted weight (see, I’m spinning thinner) and is about 10 yds.  I absolutely love it, but have no idea what I’m going to do with it.  Guess I’ll have to check Simple Knits to see if there is anything I like.

Amongst all this spinning I am still knitting, I just haven’t been posting about it much.  I’m STILL working on Ray’s scarf, and have been plucking away at the Pride shawl.  Although, we just got in a fight the other day (the shawl and I, not Ray and I) and some angry words were spoken.  It’s not really the shawl’s fault, it’s the instructions and mine.  It’s the instructions fault for being wrong, and mine for not looking up the errata (of which I knew there was) before picking this project back up.  So when I finally did look at the errata and realized 11 rows later that I had started the color change one repeat too early, I may have said some awful things to the shawl that I will have to take back (along with those 11 rows).  No, I didn’t put a lifeline in before the color change.  I hadn’t needed one up to this point (and technically wouldn’t have, had I checked for pattern changes).  I tried to run a lifeline through the stitches below the row I need to rip back to, but this only resulted in more angry words and frustration.  So, I tink.  I would have pictures of this wonderful, sweet, beautiful, and not-at-all-the-bane-of-my-existence shawl, but aside from the aforementioned attributes it is hard to photograph so you can actually see what it looks like.  When laying there, it just kind of looks like a lumpy pile of tangled stitches.  You have to stretch it and block it to really get the idea, and I just don’t have the gumption to do that until it’s done.  Ok, I’m off to humble myself to an organized pile of string…I mean, the most beautiful project my needles have ever produced.

Monday, March 23, 2009

How Well Do You Know Me?


Would I wear this?


If you answered “HAH!”, then you are right.  This certainly is not a pattern that I would ever pick out for myself (but perhaps for those I don’t like), but then again, I didn’t.  No, this pattern happens to be part of the final shipment of the 7 Deadly Spins Club.  This, my friends, is Lust.

DSCF4140 From the insert*:

…designed a knit and crochet embellished combination scarf (I beg to differ on this being a scarf) to satisfy your “lust” for both techniques, and even added in some special pearl bead touches (pearl beads, on my neck?  you shouldn’t have, really, you SHOULDN’T have.  my brain is way too far in the gutter to have pearls on my neck.  I’d never stop blushing, and if you know me, you know that’s true.)  The yarn being used- Unique Sheep Verve in American Beauty Rose (great color and yardage) and Luxe in Lusty Pink and Leaf Green complete the design for a gorgeous finished scarf (again, ?)

It kind of goes on like that, explaining why this project fulfills my craft “lust”.  While I’m sure this project would be fun to make, and I do like making little crocheted flowers, I just wouldn’t be able to look at the end product with a straight face.  In this patterns (meager) defense, the pearl beads are optional. 

Aside from the pattern clearly not aimed at me, the yarn is very lovely.  The color of the red isn’t really accurate in the picture.  It’s a much more rose-colored red, with shots of reddish-purple.  And there’s 400 yds of it!  The pink and green are also very pretty and I’m sure I’ll find something cute to make with this yarn.  Thrown in with the project supplies was a bag of hershey’s kisses and some lip balm.

I was a little disappointed that they decided to re-use two yarn bases in this shipment, Verve (Gluttony) and Luxe (Pride).  I would have really liked to have seen a new base featured (like Singularity in Silk, Silk Twist, or Sashimi.  Any of these would have fit Lust in my eyes).  However, they did pick the yarns from my two favorite projects, so I know I like them. 

So, would I join again?  No.  While I enjoyed not knowing what/how the sin would be each month, I have realized that my mind/tastes are far more sinister than those in charge of this club.  There were definitely plenty of people that were/are pleased with all of their shipments, but I am one of the few that feels let down.

I will definitely be buying Unique Sheep yarn (the yarn was never a disappointment), and when I do so I’ll be purchasing it through Woolgirl (the shop I signed up for the club through).  She carries all different lines of yarn and has a really good selection.  However, I am going to be very weary of signing up for any themed clubs from now on, unless I’ve seen how they tend to interpret them.  This was my first club, and I learned a lot about how to select them and I did have fun talking with others on the boards.

So this is me, and now you know.  (take it away Jason….)

*I left the designers name out because I’m not attacking her personally, I’ve seen her other patterns and really like a lot of them.  Just not this one.

Friday, March 20, 2009

March Phat-ness

You got it, Bitches!  I got another Phat Fiber box!  This month the box sold out in 45 seconds during the first round!  45 FREAKING SECONDS!!!  I even woke up early with a hangover from the night before and a bit sleep deprived, and I still got one.  I was quick on the draw I tell you.  My etsy-foo is not to be messed with.  So, yeah, enough of my bragging.  On to the box!


Mine was decorated with all these cute stamps.  Jessie said her kids helped out and I think they gave my box a little extra love.  I could feel it, and I think it rocks!


In the envelope/recipe (for Colcannon, Irish mashed potatoes, the theme was Celtic this month), there were coupons and stitch markers.  The coupons are for Northern Bay Handspun, Wooliebullie, Natchwoolie, SLV Folk Arts and Fiber Festival (put on by Laura Murphy of Wildethyme), Danido Crafty, My Fair Bag Lady (no coupon, just a very vague business card), The Cupcake Factory, and Extreme Spinning.  The coupons were very generous this time around and it’s going to be difficult not to use all of them.


Also in the box, a stone pendant from Ambrosia and Bliss,


a very pretty stitch marker tied with the most adorable little bow, from The Twice Sheared Sheep,


and a photo card of a very delicious looking raspberry from Marlyn’s Corner Store.  And that was just in the envelope, people!  Onward!


Note:  The dollar did not come in the box, if anyone did get dollars in their box though, I call shenanigans.  Mine came from my pocket and it’s just there for scale.

First, some adorable samples of Rambouillet and Merino top from East Kentucky Fibers.  From what I gather from the card, the cream (undyed) is Merino top and the dyed samples are Rambouillet in her various dyelots.  They’re very soft and the colors are nice and rich.


From The Fox Hop, about .5oz of Corriedale cross, Shetland Fleece, Superwash Merino, Alpaca, Bamboo, Sea Cell, and Angelina.  She labels it as a Foxyie Batt, but I’m gonna call it “The Kitchen Sink”, cause it’s got everything but that.  It’s hard to tell in this picture, but the angelina in this batt absolutely glitters!  I keep turning it so the light catches it all over and it just sparkles.  Sigh.


Ohhhhh.  Fiberphile Alchemy.  I love her colors and this one is no exception.   She sent in 5.2g of Merino Bamboo (80/20) Sock yarn in the Emerald Isle colorway.  It’s so squishy and soft!  Quote from her card:  Fiberphile Alchemy is dyed in random overlapping layers of two to four harmonious colors.  This technique creates beautiful blending effects and results in a rich, mulit-dimensional colorscape for your finished project.  How could you not want some of that?!


Moonlight and Laughter sent in an 18 yd skein of Merino/Nylon (75/25) Superwash Sock yarn in the colorway “Kil Kelly”.  It is very squishy and looks like it will have great stitch definition.  The colorway reminds me of my Mom, they’re very much her colors, so therefore I love it!  (she also had a coupon for 20% off your first purchase, so I might have to get a skein of this for mother’s day)



Punk Jordane sent in a really uniquely packaged mini skein of Superwash Wool.  The buttery yellow/soft yarn is wrapped around a bamboo stalk!  Cool!  She also sent a sample of her scented bath salts.  The scent is Full Bloom and she uses real sea salt and cosmetic grade fragrance oils.  It smells really good and it seems like a little would go a long way.


I LOVE the colors on this yarn!  The way it’s spun reminds me of the sample from Fuzzy Bunny yarns in January, but it’s not.  It’s from Simply Twisted Yarns, and it’s got me simply twisted!  There is no fiber content included, but it weighs 23.6g and is about Sport weight.  I can’t wait to see how these colors blend!


This lovely ball of fluff is from Tersa Levite Studio.  It’s .25oz of Hand Dyed & Blended Shetland Wool/Tussah Silk (60/40).  The color is actually brighter than this picture shows.  It’s almost neon green, love it!

This is about the time in the photo session where Sam started to take interest.  So most of the following photos will feature him, or some part of him.

DSCF4120See, there’s a paw.  And some handspun from Dragonmaille (great name!)  It’s 13yds of Alpaca/wool blend in the Celtic Isle colorway.  It has shades of green and brown that are hard to pick up in this picture.  Believe me, it’s very pretty. It’s also spun really well, it’s very even and soft.  I hope one day I can spin this nicely.


Three different colors of Suri Alpaca Locks from Moonwood Farm.  The colors are (top to bottom) Irish Moss, Celtic Gold, and Light Fawn.  From the card:  These samples are washed but will need to be combed before use to remove vegetable matter.  I don’t really have anything to comb them with (except for my comb, but I don’t think that’s the kind they’re talking about), and I’m not really sure what I’m supposed to do with them.  But they are pretty, and soft and one day I may find out how to spin with them.


Sam’s helping.  This is quite a generous skein from Abstract Fibers.  25.5g of Mighty Sock (Superwash Merino/Tencel; 50/50) in a Husband-worthy colorway, Steel Bridge.  It’s shiny and soft, and Sam-approved.  That’s good enough for me!

DSCF4125 It’s called Cordelia!  (no, not after the Buffy cohort/Angel sidekick, but I’m going to pretend it is)  That would be all I need to know, but I’m sure some of you aren’t as easily convinced (or huge dorks like me, but I certainly know some of you are!).  This is a 15yd skein of Extravagance Sock Yarn from Knit It Up (remember them, I got some smelly and some soft from them).  It’s Superwash Merino/Silk/Nylon/Silver Fibers (63/20/15/2).  It’s got bling, yo!  You can’t tell in this picture, it’s very subtle, but it does sparkle.  Also, the color is actually a little darker than this picture shows.

DSCF4126 From Aurora Fiber Arts, this is 2oz of Fireweed Worsted Merino Wool in the Eire colorway.  The colors are lovely and I’m always on the lookout for a nice worsted wool.  I will be keeping and eye on her site for sure!


DSCF4129This deliciousness is from Extreme Spinning.  There are so many good things about this fiber that I think I better let her explain it.  From the card:

 Since I love knitting things that CAN be washed, especially for kids and socks, but hate the idea of always having to work with superwash chemicals, I searched all over for the right wool.  Finally, I found it!  From a small, family farm in the mid-west (what-up!) comes this Certified Organic wool.  These beautiful sheep are raised on open pastures and lots of love!  Happy Sheep make Happy Fibers! 

The roving in your hands comes from Suffolk/Hampshire crosses which are “down” breeds, not wool breeds.  Instead of crimp, down wool has curl, keeping the yarn bouncy even if spun worsted.  For an extremely squishy yarn, spin it woolen! (I don’t know what that means)   The more you wash it, the softer it becomes.  Spin, Knit & Wash!

I have also used no harsh chemical dyes to create this machine washable wool.   The colors you see were created by the new Greener Shades Dyes, an organically certified line of dyes created without use of heavy metals.  And I use an organic soap to wash my fibers.  I hope you enjoy them as much as I do!

I don’t think I need to say anything more.  Except that those two pictures are the same batt (approx. .25oz), top and bottom.

DSCF4130 Yay!  Another KIP bag!  Ruddawg makes awesome bags.  This one is a little smaller than the other one I have, but it’ll fit in my “fancy” purse much nicer.  She’s always getting in new fabric so check her site often!

DSCF4131Sam would NOT leave this skein alone!  I don’t blame him either (he gets his great taste from his Mommy), it’s Hedgehog Fibers!!!  My very first 100% silk roving in a delicious colorway (that’s actually the same colors as my cat, no wonder he likes it), Traffic Jam.  I don’t know how many oz it is, but however much, it will never be enough.  I (and Sam) heart Hedgehog fibers!

DSCF4138 Hiding out at the bottom of the box, was the Boho Knitter!  Well, not actually her, but one of her patterns.  The Bocca Baciata hair comb pattern, which now that my hair is short, wouldn’t really work.  But I know someone who would look adorable in this, I’m thinking black and red (what do you think Jen?).

So that is my box.  I think the vendors were very generous this month, most of the sample sizes were very large.  I thought the ratio of different types of samples was pretty good (although I would have preferred more fiber, but I think that’s because I’m just getting hooked).  No Knickolas for me, which I was a little sad about.  I wanted to take pictures of him with Franklin Habit, who will be speaking at our library’s Knit-In next week.  Oh well, I might be chauffeuring him around for a bit and Knick is the one missing out.  :) 

Please click on the links and show these Phatties your love.  These are all independent businesses and they can really use our help.  All of the products I have received have been high quality.  The prices at most of these shops are very reasonable as well, they understand that in an economic crisis they are not exactly top priority for the budget (but that depends on how faithful you are to your budget!).  They go out of their way to make sure that your shopping experience is a good one, and some of them even throw in little extras!  Ok.  This concludes my advertising broadcast.  Pictures of handspun to come when I get my birthday spindle from Ray!