The thing I love about knitting is that, even though I haven’t really been knitting all that long, everytime I see my onerva shawl, or evertime I wear my shipwreck shawl it reminds me of how I felt when I was knitting it. Even in the dead of winter I felt the hot august sun on my skin when I hid my face (from the snow) in the beaded and a little felted malabrigo lace. Even though I haven’t worn some things that often (lelah… with the scratchy yarn) or the things I’ve worn everyday (starburst 😀 ), I still feel like every knit stitch helps me grow as a person. It teaches me to be that much more apreciative of my surroundings and of the people around me. I remember funny conversations or nice things that happened while I was knitting this particular piece.
One of the most wonderful compliments I ever got was when i was walking towards the busstation and this woman passes me by and asks me where I bought that pretty hat I was wearing. I don’t usually blush but I did feel my cheeks go rosy while I explained how I had not bought my Starburst hat, but had knitted it myself 🙂 She was actually happy and bummed, since she couldn’t buy one.. and I was bummed because if it hadn’t been so darmn cold I wouldn’ve given her the hat as a thank you 🙂
The more I progress with my knitting the more I realize the importance of good yarn. I’m a poor student so I knit with the cheapest yarn I can find (the 1 euro 100g balls from the wibra), but that’s only because I can’t afford expensive yarns… or that’s what I thought. The magic word here is ‘spinning’. Let’s be honest here.. spinning yarn takes some time, and it takes a lot of practice to gain enough experience to spin consistent yarn. So in that way some would say it would be more expensive to spin your own yarn than if you would just buy yarn. But I disagree. The point is that I’m a student and I have to do a lot of reading, much of the books and articles are available on the internet or are scanned as pdf. So most of the reading happens on the computer. Unfortunately for me, as it turns out, I can’t really seem to focus when reading. I mean this is not some light reading we’re talking about here.. it’s quite some heavy stuff that needs to be run over in my head before it really sinks in. So I found out a way that works perfect for me. I let macs text-to-speach Alex read my text while I knit 😀
So I figured, if I can knit lace patterns while ‘reading’ an analytic book on space structures and mathematical formulas, I must also be able to spin yarn while ‘reading’ :). So with this in mind I started googling. I’ve actually always wanted to spin yarn ever since I first started knitting. The whole spinning wheel thing seemed like such a magical thing.. like it came right out of a fairy tale. So about a year ago I wanted to buy a cheap second hand spinning wheel to try it out and already did some research on it, but after a while I decided I wouldn’t buy one since I know myself.. I super super super like something for a while, and then I forget about it. And as expected I did actually forget about it for a while.. but it came back.. and this time it wouldn’t leave. By this time I had discovered ravelry and I had browsed through the handspun collections some people had and I was so awed by the spinning magic that was going on. It felt like a whole world was opening up to me.
So I did some more research on where I could get fleece.. surely it had to be expensive.. there had to be something really really sucky about spinning because otherwise more people would be doing it.. I was sure of it…So this is what I found…when buying fleece.. 100g of merino roving costs 3 euros…. 100g of 3ply sockyarn (by malabrigo) costs 16,50 euro………… AND IT’S NOT EVEN IN THE COLOR I WANT….d’oh…
Sooo…….tl;dr.. I’m getting me a spinning wheel.. I bought some nice rovings from wol-uniek and I actually spun me a very small bit of alpaca on a ghetto drop-spindle. It was such fun 😀
Every project has the little mistakes you know about but nobody else will ever see.. girasole is a marked shawl for me.. I think I will never forget how bummed I was when the yarn ran out on me for the second time… 😛
Print o’ the wave is nearly done. I did half the edging with two separate dpn’s and a loose end before I realized Jared Flood’s method with one dpn and the working needle was so much more efficient. At least it’s going much faster now than first so this one shouldn’t take long.
I really love how this is turning out. I promised to give this one to my mom as a thank you for all the things she knit for me (which I didn’t appreciate when I was a little kid), as a birthday present. This means I need to start hurrying up since her birthday is the 21st of april……. 😛 another deadline project.. I’m pretty sure my yarn won’t run out again tho 🙂 I have quite a lot left :).
And speaking of cheap wibra yarn… here’s my corona 🙂 I’ve loved the pattern since the first time I saw it but for some reason I never got to actually knitting it. Please don’t feel sad for me for having to buy cheap yarn.. the yarns from wibra are, though they are 100% acrylic, very nice and soft. I’m actually quite happy to knit them and I’ve stashed a whole lot of them for the bigger projects 🙂 I’ve been sick for the past week and before that I had some uni deadlines so I hadn’t really come round to post some pictures yet.. but I think it’s turning out to be quite nice 🙂
a little close-up on the cable pattern. I’m doing the cables without a cable needle and I’m not knitting or purling the first stitch of each row. I hope the cable band won’t curl much by slipping the first stitch since I really don’t like that about this sweater.
I noticed some of wibra’s yarns are slightly thicker than others.. for instance the white saskia yarn is thinner than the brown one.. though this might be because I bought the white balls in the summer and I’ve heard they have summer and winter yarns, but I can’t be sure about that. Since I wanted to knit this sweater with larger needles (5,5mm) I doubled the yarn on my ball winder. It’s a nice, thick fabric now so I can use it as a nice sweater for the colder days in the Dutch climate.
I started on camden as well. This is how far I’ve gotten with the 2,5mm needles. I’m doing this one top-down and in one piece since I really hate seams. It’s not much yet but I’m really diggin the way the fabric’s turning out 🙂
so if you haven’t skipped the text part you’ll probably know what this is… no I haven’t got my spinning wheel yet so this is just a halfhearted attempt at spinning yarn and the main focus was on drafting. This is my first ever piece of ‘yarn’ I ever.. if you can even call it that… I just knit it up with a 5mm needle and it’s about 1 square inch… and very inconsistent as the picture shows… but that’s okay.. I had a LOT of fun doing this since it was my first ever handspun yarn on my DIY drop spindle (pictured below).
The fibre is alpaca and it comes from the wonderfull site: wol-uniek. I will most definately be ordering more once I get my wheel. But I’m getting ahead of myself… So here be my ghetto drop-spindle. I made it with a pencil and three layers of thick cardboard-paper. I just pushed the pencil through and carved a rim in the pencil where I looped the yarn….. tadaaaaa.. free drop-spindle. Obviously my first attempt would suck but I’m quite pleased with myself…. 😛 😀
Here’s my au naturel rovings. Merino 100g and Alpaca 50g. I don’t know if it’s best to try to spin it natural first before coloring it or not.. I’m not sure.. I’ll need to do some more research before I jump in…. but I’ll keep you posted 😉