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Tour de Fleece 2013

mosaic92ec8d1e0415e0a0bd94939f9d5a76591190c7be
Tour de Fleece is over for another year.  What is Tour de Fleece?  Well, it’s held during the Tour de France, that big bicycling race, except replace bikes with spinning wheels and fiber, and you have a nerdy, wool filled 21 days (plus two days rest) of spinning your feet off.  I posted my progress shots on Instagram, but I figured I’d post the final shot of my finished work here.  My final tally is 3081 yards of finished yarn, but times three for the three plies, and I have 9,243 yards spun in total.  Not too shabby!  I could’ve probably spun more, but I was pretty busy and seemed to have stressed the heck out of my hands like I never have before.  My favorite is the Chasing Rainbows top mostly for the way it spun so easily and evenly.  REALLY love the colors on the Taylored Fibers yarn.  So, now that I have all this handspun, I need to actually start using it for projects!

All have been chain plied, links to go my Ravelry stash page.

Top row, L to R:
1. Chasing Rainbows Merino/Bombyx top – 332 yards, 2 oz
2. Taylored Fibers 80/20 Merino/Silk – 542 yards, 4 oz
3. Dunn Spunn Alpaca/Wool/Bamboo – 628 yards, 9.3 oz

Bottom row, L to R:
1. Twisted Fiber Art Cloudy 60/40 Merino/Bamboo – 547 yards, 4 oz
2. Mountain Colors 100% Targhee – 506 yards, 4 oz
3. Wild Hare Fiber Studio Superwash Wool – 526 yards, 4oz

Knitting update

I know it’s been a while since I’ve had a knitting/spinning update, in the midst of the One Local Summer fiesta I’ve been having. I’ve still been knitting and spinning, honest! Now that it’s been half the year, I suppose we should go back and look at the knitting resolutions for this year and see how things are progressing.

1. The American Aran Afghan. This is the beast that I will tackle and finish this year.
Yeahhh.. I have four squares done. I’m finding the charting and the way the book is set up to be VERY frustrating and it’s putting me off from knitting the squares. Each square goes rather quickly if I sit down and work at it, but it’s an absolute pain to copy, cut, and arrange the charts so that it makes sense to knit row-by-row.  Plus, there was this random odd injury that made knitting painful for a few months.  So, I was spinning A LOT but barely knitting a stitch.  Then there was the Tour de Fleece which took up almost a whole month of just spinning.. Not sure if I’m going to finish this afghan this year.

2. Knit /spin any club yarn/fiber in the month it is received.
Doing REALLY well with this one. I’ve had three club shipments for yarn this year that resulted in three pairs of socks so far. There was also a fiber club with three braids of roving that ended up as three skeins of yarn.

3. Knit two sweaters.
One down, one to go. I knitted the Leaf Pattern Gilet which knitted up rather quickly and will be a fall favorite when weather comes back around to actually knit. Here are the details!

DSC_0922 Leafy Cardigan
Pattern: Leaf Pattern Gilet
Needles: US 6 (4mm)
Yarn:  Balmoral by Sirdar
Ravelry Project Link
So incredibly pleased with this project from the color to the yarn to the pattern. It’s a really lovely and simple knit and I’m so glad I was able to grab the magazine that contained this pattern while it was available.

4. Knit one double-knitted item.
Uhhhh… Maybe this winter? I’m still feeling a little overwhelmed by the idea and it probably sounds more complicated than it really is.

2009 Knitting Resolutions – Wrap up

2009 is over and gone, and I’m going to check through my list and see how I’ve done.

1. Clear the WIP queue from last year by the end of the month.
There’s still one outstanding WIP from 2008 in my queue, but otherwise, I did pretty well on the clean-up!  We’ll consider this one not complete, but close, right?

2. Knit two sweaters this year.
I got one!  I blogged about that one here, and got a good start on the second one, but haven’t yet finished it.  Hopefully soon.

3. Knit one pair of socks per month.
Oh boy did I EVER do this one.  And I think I deserve a HUGE GOLD STAR.  Because I’m awesome.

sockmosaic2009

I knitted a few socks this year. Here are my official 12 per the year, but the total count is 19 pairs *finished* this year (some were started in 2008).  The links below are to flickr and the original post on my blog.

1. January
flickrblog
2. February
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3. March
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4. April
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5. May
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6. June
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7. July
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8. August
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9. September
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10. October
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11. November
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12. December
flickrblog

4. Spin four ounces of roving per month.
I might not have gotten them all in on the right month, but here we have it! Some of those are 8 ounces, so I don’t have 12 photos, but there are more than enough ounces to count at least four for every month of the year.  Yes, I realize October is missing, but there are two entries for March, so the math works out in the end, yes?  Yes.
Fibermosaic2009

1. Jan/Feb
blog
2. Jan/Feb
blog
3. March
Flickr
4. June/July
blog
5. June/July
blog
6. August
blog
7. September
blog
8. May
blog
9. March
blog
10. November
blog
11. December
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5. Dye more yarn and roving.
Oh yeah. Did that. Hosted a dye-day at my house with the local Stitch n’ Bitch and it was super fun.

6. Knit at least one pair of stranded socks.
Nope. Not even a little. I really over-extended myself this past year.

7. Finish holiday gift knitting throughout the year instead of all at once in December!
I guess I got this one? Sorta cheated since I only did one item for one person. It’s so hard knitting gifts when there are five sisters-in-law to knit for. I’ve opened up next year for requests, so we’ll see what happens.

8. Participate in another test knit.
Yep. A few of them. I think three total?

9. Work on an original pattern.
*buzzer*  Not even a little bit.  It was a nice idea though?

The tally comes to five out of nine.  I think the list for 2010 is going to be more conservative.  More on that later, while I think up some goals to set.

December Knitting Wrap-up

December (and all of 2009) is gone and it’s time to update on the knitting resolutions.

3. Knit one pair of socks per month

DSC_8477 Hanging Vines of Envy
Pattern: Hanging Vines
Designer: Kelly Porpiglia
Needles: US 1 (2.25mm)
Yarn:  Sheepy Time Yarns Sheepy Feet in, “Green Eyed Monster,” from the Sheepy Time Knits December 2009 Club
Ravelry Project Link
There was just no excuse for this one to be anything than what it is.  It’s the December colorway since I’m a speshul snowflake, and thus, these socks had to be knitted.  They’d been in my queue for a while and when this yarn popped out of the mailbox, I KNEW, just knew what the yarn was destined to be.  Not a super-easy knit, challenging enough that I wasn’t bored, but I definitely needed the chart the whole way through.  The results are very much worth it and I’m totally jazzed about how they came out.

4. Spin four ounces of roving per month.
I made up for last month and covered this month too.

DSC_7866 This is 8 ounces of Handspun alpaca.  The roving comes from Black Diamond Alpacas, a local gal who sends the fiber from her animals to be processed together.  The names of the alpacas used in this blend were even on the label which is just too cute.  Unfortunately, the fiber was REALLY dirty and I think it’s probably from an oil or grease used during the process that draws out the roving to keep the fuzz from flying.  It washed out (after four rinses), and I’m rather happy with the results.  I ended up with about a worsted weight, approximately 350 yards.  This wasn’t so much a spin for a specific project, but I’m thinking a pair of thrummed mittens may be in order.

And that’s all I’ve got.  I have to get a few posts together this month for a resolutions wrap up as well as a 2010 resolutions (*gasp* 2010?!  DID I JUST SAY THAT?!).

November Knitting Wrap-up

November is gone and it’s time to update on the knitting resolutions.

3. Knit one pair of socks per month

Socks Plain Old Socks
Pattern: None – plain Stockinette socks
Designer: Me?
Needles: US 1 (2.25mm)
Yarn: My Handspun from dkKnits Superfluff roving in, “Shooting Star”
Ravelry Project Link
I had so much fun spinning up the yarn and then knitting the socks.  The yarn is a basic fingering weight yarn that was spun on my SpinOlution Mach I and then navajo plied.  I broke the yarn at the heel and started from the other end of the ball so that the color progressions on the leg and instep would be continuous.  Yeah, it’s a few more ends to weave in, but.  Look at that!  Becky always does such a fabulous job with colors.

4. Spin four ounces of roving per month.
See above – the yarn was finished spinning about mid month.  Then it jumped in front of everything and decided to become socks.

 2. Knit two sweaters this year.
Still working on this. I really hope to be done with the second by the end of the month, but I’m just not sure that will happen.

I’m really looking forward to January so that I can post a big follow-up to this year’s resolutions and set another batch for next year. There are going to be some good ones, I can just feel it. Also looking forward to lining up all 12 photos of socks from this year and patting myself on the back a whole bunch of times. Speaking of which, I should probably start the pair for this month, huh?