Tag Archives: yarn

Wonderful Wonderwool Wales

Hi Gang,ย 

I know I know, it’s been a while huh?

I’ve decided it’s just SO hard to keep a blog running and keep it updated weekly, it’s just one of those things, when you have 4 clubs running, a shop to update weekly and shows to prepare for all by yourself, the blog seems less important.ย 

I promise to try a little harder… I’ve now got the ap on my phone so I can blog on the go, lets see if that makes me do it more often eh?ย 

So… We haven’t spoken since February? ooh dear! Well, Unravel at Farnham Maltings was wonderful, apart from a sick helper, who trooped on regardless of feeling awful, we had a GREAT show… met some lovely people and sold heaps of lush yarn ๐Ÿ™‚ย 

Since unravel we’ve been slowly preparing for wonder wool, as well as getting clubs out. Which I will blog about separately… see… extra posts already planned ๐Ÿ˜‰ย 

Last weekend was Wonderwool Wales, our 3rd visit to the show, and this year we pulled out all the stops, ordered a double sized stand and dyed every last scrap of yarn we had to take along with us. But that wasn’t all…we also decided to do something about the plain and boring booth walls this year, last year we ended up with scuffed and dirty walls that we had to hide with yarn and carefully placed furniture… this year, we papered all the walls with a clean fresh lining paper, and doodled all over them ๐Ÿ™‚ย 

We weren’t sure it would work, but the response was amazing, my lovely husband is an excellent cartoonist, and often draws silly little ‘skits’ for me, so he was in his element drawing away pictures of sheep, alpaca and of course me.

What do you think?ย 

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Looks good eh? Well the judges of the ‘Best in Show’ Ribbon thought so too, we won best in show for our size of stand, and we shall be proudly displaying the rosette at Woolfest in 7 weeks time too ๐Ÿ˜‰ย 

All in all, despite it being very cold and very wet, we had a wonderful show, met lots of lovely people, got some really great feedback and happy knitters leaving with armfuls of yummy yarn.

Our next show is Woolfest, taking part in Cumbria, June 22-23, and we hope to have just as much fun, and be a little warmer this time ๐Ÿ™‚ย 

See you there maybe?ย 

Jx

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Preparing for Unravel

Hi guys,

Sorry it’s been so quiet around the blog – we’re busy doing this:

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That is just 1 days deeply wicked dyeing concentrating on reds and purples – today I’m concentrating on blues and greens ๐Ÿ™‚

I find a days colour palate helps me know what colours I’ve dyed already ๐Ÿ™‚

Hope you’re going to come along to see us at Unravel, Farnham? We’ve got a bigger booth this year, those of you who came to see us last year may remember the tight squeeze it was to get all of our stock on show – and this year we’ve got deeply wicked, little guys and lots of fluff for you all to play with ๐Ÿ™‚
Unravel is takin place in just over a week on february 25-26, find out more about the show here

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In other news, Sushi Shawl Along 9.0 is open for sign up and filling up fast, find out more and save your place here

Sign up and then have your say on theme/style/colours over on the easyknits forum on Ravelry, we welcome all thoughts and ideas.

Right that’s all I have time for, back to work I go … More dyeing, winding and labelling to be done – see you all in just over a week.

Jx

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Cherry Bomb Spin-a-thon!

 

Well here I am again, and who would have thought 2 posts in a row would be about spinning? It’s not that all I have been doing IS spinning, but for the moment the things I’ve been working on I can’t share with you … y’know… top secret and all that jazz ๐Ÿ˜‰

In my last post I talked about how thrilled I was with the result of my spinning ( having not spun for a long time, except to teach a spindle class in December ). I was super happy with the results of my Punk Pansy spinning, the only disappointment was that I was going for ‘sport’ weight yarn and ended with DK, and a pitiful 150m.

I thought about it a while, then asked some of my spinny piers for their advice to achieve the illusive ‘fingering weight /300m’ mark with my handspun. A few conversations later (thanks Marieanne) and I realized there was a simple truth to my lack of length to my spun yarns …. I wasn’t checking my WPI in my singles. Had I done this way back when, I would have been a lot closer to my goal a long time ago. Going by ‘eye’ doesn’t cut it with spinning I’m afraid, well not for me anyway, I needed to see just how fine my singles needed to be to achieve the perfect fingering weight yarn.

So with much pride and a little delay in my ‘once a week’ blog post promise … welcome my first ever Twinkle Fluff (extrafine Merino/ Silk / stellina) spin – Cherry Bomb

 

95g / 280m / 16wpi 3-ply medium/light fingering weight. Spun on Mach II

Cherry Bomb, is my first real ‘fingering weight’ yarn… and with a whopping 280m in the 95g skein here, by far the longest I have ever ever spun any yarn. I feel like this marks a turning point for me and my spinning, achieving fingering weight has hung over me like a shadow for a long while in my spinning life, and if I’m honest, at times kept me away from my wheel.

Now I’m not saying that this is the best spinning I’ve ever done, by far it is not. IT has thick and thin moments, and the plying was a little ‘iffy’ in places as my wheel and I had a little falling out (don’t worry we’re friends again now)… but as far as length and weight go, I’m pleased as punch, and ‘Cherry Bomb’ will go a long way towards restoring my confidence on the wheel. Also spinning a blend of Merino/silk for the first time too, made me more confident with spinning new fibres.

It feels good to set a challenge and make it a long way towards achieving it in 1 spin, so before I loose momentum, I think I should publicly set myself another challenge…. and after this mornings success at counting the best yardage I’ve ever achieved… I can afford to critique myself a little. I love my latest handspuns, but what I feel my handspun yarn lacks is ‘loftiness’ and ‘air’, although I’ve achieved a great length, I still feel my yarns are too dense and compact. An answer to this is simple, well it’s simple to say, but possibly not to achieve, longdraw – EEEP!

The next time I post about spinning, I will have spun 100g of fluff in the longdraw method, from chats and youtube videos I’ve seen that it is all about technique and style, and just ‘going for it’, so that is what I will do. Wish me luck ๐Ÿ˜€

Oh.. and for those of you wondering what is going on with Mummy Mitts, being knit out of my Punk Pansy spin from the last post? Progress has been made and will continue slowly while other more urgent projects take over for a while… but it’s cute huh?

Mummy Mitten

More News and updates from the dyepots and wheel next week folks ๐Ÿ™‚

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Spin, Span, Spun

Hello, gosh is it 2012 already? I look back and see I haven’t posted in the longest time… oh dear.

Well I’m making a resolution today, you can do that right? It doesn’t ONLY happen at new years, surely? From today I will post at least 1 blog post a week, regardless of how little I feel I might have to say, or how uninterested you most likely will be, deal? OK, good, lets move on.

I hope you all had a fabulous festive season, I certainly did, it was my 30th birthday and I celebrated in style with my gorgeous husband whisking me around the world for 17 days of adventure and sightseeing… but that is all things I can share with you in quieter weeks on the blog right? ๐Ÿ˜‰

I have finally gotten back into the swing of dyeing again, after a long break over the holidays it took me a while to find my mojo again, I started off gently, dyeing up colours I know and love to dye, replacing out of stock items on the shop etc. But this week, I felt more like my adventurous old self and got busy with the Deeply Wicked, which as always has been very well received.

But today I want to share with you my delight, and overwhelming smugness with my latest attempt at spinning.

For the longest time, I have run hot and cold with spinning, going at it like crazy for weeks then not touching my wheel or spindle for months… but in 2012 I’d very much like to change that. This week I dyed some roving in a new and unusual way, because I had a thought, maybe a finished spun yarn doesn’t have to resemble the fibre it started out as. For some of you more seasoned spinners, this may very well be old news, but for me, it was an exciting ‘lightbub’ moment.

I set to work on dyeing my fibre in the new more adventurous way, and was really quite happy with the finished results, really acid bright and contrasting flecks of colour on a snow white backdrop… like a multicolored Dalmatian.

Punk Pansy dyed fibre

Then I set to work spinning it up, wanting to get the best result I could, I took my time and sectioned the fibre into 3rds, and then each 3rd in half, pre- drafting to get a nice smooth even roving that would slip through my fingers nicely. The spin took just 6hrs over 2 evenings, and the plying a further 2.5hrs.

I was so happy with the final result, if not a little miffed that the yarn is quite short, just 165m. I thought I was spinning to a fingering / 4-ply weight, and when I checked the final WPI of the singles and the finished yarns, seems my singles WERE 4-ply, but x 3 made for more like DK/Worsted weight.

No matter …. it’s pretty, and it’s even and it proved that fibre and finished yarn can look much MUCH different, and it is wound and ready to be cast on as mittens for mothers day. I think I may line them with a baby pink soft alpaca yarn I’ve laying around, even though the Merino/Nylon fibre is deliciously soft, more just to spoil my mum and make them extra special for her, watch this space for progress photos soon.

Punk Pansy spun yarn

There are three more braids of Punk Pansy available along with many more delicious spinning fibres in the easyknits.co.uk shop right now here…. more coming next week in the ‘punk’ range with splashes of colour that blend and soften with spinning.

Chat to you all next week.

 

Jx

 

 

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The Big Knit, November 13 – with new & exclusive products

Hi Guys,

It’s coming up to the weekend, and it’s time to pack up the knit-wagon and head on off to Exeter for ‘The Big Knit’ show, being held in Exeter’s ‘Corn Exchange’.

This is the first time Easyknits.co.uk will have attended the show, and I’m really excited (and as always a little nervous) about it.

I’m frantically trying to pack what yarn I think I should take along, knowing that I cannot the my ‘full range’ as I usually would to any show a) because the set up time for vendors is only 2hrs & b) because I have just 2 table tops worth of space, plenty, but not big enough for my normal racks. Also this will be the first show this year where I’ll be alone, Mr Easyknits can’t come along as he’s working the weekend for his real job, but I’m sure it will all be GREAT.

Also there will be a couple of brand new and exclusive items coming along with me to the show. We’ve not taken any fibre for spinning to a show in over a year now, but we’ll be bringing some delicious and BRAND NEW fibres for spinners to the show, introducing:

TWINKLE FLUFF


A beautiful new spinning fibre, made up of extra fine merino/silk and stellina, a luxury fibre for spinners that just glistens and sparkles like all the yarns in our twinkle family, only now you can spin it yourself . Photo’s do not show just how glittery it really is!!

and

DEEPLY WICKED – HEAVENLY


The ever stunning Deeply Wicked family has grown once again, adding the delectable and super squishy ‘heavenly’ to its fold. The 100% superwash merino ย DK weight ‘roving style’ yarn, is a thick/thin, deliciously soft and cuddly base, with a generous 220m, dyed in the same vibrant and exquisite style as all Deeply Wicked. No two skeins will ever be the same.

If you’re coming along, and there is something you’d LOVE us to bring along from the shop, let me know, as space is limited and I’ll only be bringing a selection of our best sellers and ย new products along.

Details of the show are below, I hope to see you there!

The big KNIT show

13th November 2011 – 10am-4pm

Venue Address:ย Exeter Corn Exchange, Market Street, Exeter, EX1 1BW

http://www.knitexpo.co.uk
info@knitexpo.co.uk
01392 โ€“ 411700

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Fibre Flurry Madness

Hi guys,

I know it’s taken me a few days to get around to writing this post, but really only just recovered and sorted myself out since getting home from Birmingham on Sunday evening!

Fibre flurry took place at the beautiful st. Nicholas place, as it did last year too! What a beautiful old and new building to have a show in ๐Ÿ™‚

FRIDAY Arriving on Friday afternoon for set up its always great to arrive and be greeted by your best wooly friends in the business. Having the same spot as last year (with a bit extra) was great as we knew pretty much what would go where and how it would fit. So with the help of my glamorous assistant we began the slow process of unpacking and building up the stand. And with extra help (thanks Jeanette) we soon were unpacked and ready to rock ‘n’ roll!

We headed off to find out hotel, where we were staying with the delightful NDS crew, Mr wool, Fyberspates and a few other knitty pals. Even though we were all knackered from set up, we don’t see each other that often so we all make the effort to be sociable and have a few drinks and dinner if we can manage, which we did.

Afraid I had to cry off the fun and frolics early as I wasn’t 100% happy with my colour arrangement on the stand and wanted an extra early start to head back over to the venue and get ‘fluffing’, but I heard it didn’t continue on too much longer that night ๐Ÿ˜‰

SATURDAY The day began with a stop off at McDonald’s for a coffee and a muffin to keep us going through the busy morning we were hoping for, then straight to the venue to get sorting. An hour passed and I was finally happy with the general rainbow effect I’d managed to create across the ranges – subtle but pleasing for me and my obsession with colour (really am obsessed with lots and LOTS of colour).

The doors opened at 10am and the customers came flooding in, it was GREAT! We had a lot of ‘oohing and ahhing’ and ‘squeeing’ as people came into the hall we were in… it was a great day, busy and fun, and lovely to see friends and regular customers popping by to say hi, show off their projects and hand over gifts of food parcels and nibbles ( Thanks Liz & Karen).

Overall we had a wonderful day and were super happy with the feedback, but as always it’s a tiring long day… so we broke the stand down and shot back to the hotel for a quick shower and change, then off out with our show buddies for dinner and a merry reflection on the day ๐Ÿ™‚

We had a great show and thanks to all who came by and said hi. Will leave you with a few snaps of the stand.

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Deeply Wicked dilemma

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So, with the twinkle DK cowl off the needles and waiting to be modelled at the weekend I’m left with a tough decision in front of me of what to cast on next?

I have gone through things I’d like to knit for myself this year, there is a particular need for me to design a huge cuddly cable sweater for myself, but the yarn hasn’t been dyed for that yet – maybe next month.

I’m already working on several club designs at the moment, and not forgetting the X-Factor mystery KAL designs too ( have been thinking about the next garment idea a lot this week ).

So what does it leave me for my ‘unwinding’ for myself type knitting – nothing at the moment! Believe me, even though I dye yarn and knit every day, there are still days when I want to knit for me, several of my designs started life as a ‘for me’ project, where I just sat and played with no idea of what I was creating other than ‘shawl’ or ‘sock’.

So here is my dilemma – I have an idea of colourwork scarf/shawl design in my head – but I cannot choose between 3 colour combinations of Deeply Wicked yarn…. yarns I have sneakily kept for myself from updates in previous weeks (hey, a Yarnie has to have his perks of the job, eh?)

So help me out if you can? What do you think of any of these combinations? Comments and suggestions are welcome

“bigger on the inside blue & time vortex gold”

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“kingfisher blue & banoffee yellow”

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“deep forest earth & link green”

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