Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Beret de Printemps

I originally spun this yarn to be a lace shawl!
There were just 2 problems. It turned out to be a heavier weight than I had planned and I was terrified of the pattern.
As you may already know, I have only used one other lace chart pattern and it was for a pair of gloves. So as I sat looking at the shawl pattern I knew if I made any mistakes their would be A LOT of tearing out to do. So I thought a hat would be a nice thing to make a little bigger than a glove and not as daunting as the shawl. 
The pattern is Beret de Printemps by Jeni Chase and can be found on Ravelry.

The fiber is 100% Merino in a Rose Quartz colourway and was purchased from Stone Edge Fibers. I spun it as a 2ply with a WPI of 18. It was very nice to spin with, soft and easy to draft.
I had a little problem with the pattern. I was about half finished with the hat when I realized I had been reading the pattern wrong:( I pulled it out and started over. Funny how the stitches look so much better when you do the pattern the right way.
It was worth the time to do it over again, and I learned more about reading lace charts!

Friday, August 1, 2014

TDF 2014

Here is what I accomplished for Tour De Fleece.
The top Grey is Jacob, the Dark Grey is Lincoln, purply pink is silk, the light yellow on the right is linen and the dark yellow is wool of unknown variety.
I wish I would have measured for yardage. I will do that next year.

I was spinning for Team Kromski and I won this wonderful pattern.
Sit n' knit mitts by Carson Allen
I can't wait to give them a try!

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Tour de Fleece Day 8

Yeah! I'm finally finished spinning my 8 oz of Jacob. I found it much harder to spin a consistent yarn with the backward draw.  I will have to practice it much more in the future. For now I am going back to my aaw alpaca with a nice simple forward draw and give my brain a break :)

I had a pesky kidney stone this week so everything slowed down, I still made sure to spin every day but a couple of days I could only do it for 5 min :(

Monday, July 7, 2014

Tour de Fleece Day 3

Day 3 I was able to ply the three bobbins I made on days 1 and 2. 
I've been working on getting my school curriculum together for the kids next year so not much else is going to happen today:(

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Tour de Fleece Day 2

It's day 2 of the tour de fleece!

I've spun 4oz of Jacob using a long backward draw and WOW is it hard to keep it consistent.
I will start plying these tomorrow. Then I will start on the next 4 oz. I sooo hope it gets easier:)

Friday, July 4, 2014

Tour de Fleece

I'm so excited tomorrow I get to start the Tour de Fleece!

My father was a cyclist and I remember having the Tour de France on TV every July.  I also remember grabbing my blanket and pillow to sleep in the back of the car while my mom was driving the support vehicle during various local races.  I may have complained at the time about getting up so early, but they are fond memories now! I try to remember that when my kids complain about an activity we're doing.

Well this is my year to wear the yellow jersey, doing exactly what I love.

My goal is to spin 8oz of Jacob with a long backward draw.
I have never spun Jacob before. When I pulled it out of the bag it had nice sheepy smell to it.
I normally spin with a short forward draw so this will move me out of my comfort zone a bit.
We'll see what happens!

 I will be spinning for team Kromski on my Sonata.

Who are you spinning for this year?

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

A New Adventure pt 3

Here are the winning gloves!
After looking at a ton of patterns my daughter finally decided on these.
The pattern is Pianissimo Mitts by Becky Herrick and was published in Interweave Knits Summer 2012. It can also be found at Ravelry http://www.ravelry.com/projects/badwolfyarn/pianissimo-mitts

This was my first time knitting lace and using a chart. I messed up the pattern a little on the right glove, but didn't realize it until I had finished the left one. Oops!

When I make these again I will need to block it more aggressively so they look lacier.
They were actually pretty easy to knit, once I got the hang of following the lace chart. I hope to make a pair for myself before winter.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

A New Adventure part 2

So back to the story...
I started to get busy making dolls and I didn't pick up my spindle for months.  Then in January I decieded to make a doll sweater for my daughter and I thought it would be fun to spin the yarn before I knit it.

I had her pick out the fiber. It was a lovely merino, alpaca, silk blend that was handpainted in a yellow/green/blue colourway.

I was so excited when it came I started spinning it right away. It spun so smoothly I was finely able to move away from the "park and draft" and have a nice fluid movement.  And that was the point I fell in love with spinning. It was just so clam and peaceful, it was like meditation but I was producing something at the same time. A definite win, win situation in my book!

I really loved the colour of the singles and I didn't want to mix them up so I decided to try theNavajo/ Chain Ply method.  It was easier than I thought it would be. The nice thing about plying on a drop spindle is between gravity and the built up twist(energy) in the yarn it basically plies itself.

Here it is after I plied it but before it was washed. You can see it has a little bit of that energy and I was afraid it would be unbalanced.

But after I washed it and hung it to dry it balanced nicely, yea! 

So it took me 2 months to spin, ply, wash and dry the yarn.  I had designed the pattern, and now I was finally ready to knit the doll sweater.
That's when my daughter told me she didn't really think she wanted a doll sweater, she wanted fingerless gloves.
Yes, 2 months in the life of a 12 year old is just too long to stay committed to an idea. At least the yarn was ready and I thought I remembered seeing a fingerless glove pattern somewhere...
Time to pull out the magazines and search Ravelry!

Thursday, March 20, 2014

A New Adventure Part 1

Those of you who have been reading my blog for a while might remember when I got my Drop Spindle for Christmas of 2012. If your new to my blog welcome, you can read my 2 posts on my spinning Here.
I thought it would interesting to know a little more about how yarn was made.  I had no idea it would be the beginning of a new adventure.

I began spindling with Corriedale Batt using the "park and draft" method. This is a great way to learn because you don't have to worry about the spindle going in the wrong direction as you draft. (If any one is interested I can make a video of this, just let me know.) But it does take twice as long. My first 3 oz were not very even, but I still managed to make a small hat.

Here it is on my doll Amelia.

For my second spinning project I used 3 oz of Corriedale roving. I was beginning to get better with the consistency but the yarn was still heavier than I thought it would be.  And I was still having to use the "park and draft" method.
I double plied it using the Andean Bracelet method and it turned out to be a heavy worsted to bulky range at 7 WPI(wraps per inch).

I thought I would make a pair of fingerless mitts.
But after making the first one I realized I didn't have enough yarn to make a second.

It is still sitting on the shelf a lonely mitt. I might just take it apart and have a pretty ball of yarn for the table :)
I was beginning to think I would never learn how to draft while the spindle was in motion, then something wonderful happened ..... (find out in A New Adventure Part 2)

*Resources- I always like to know where bloggers get their supplies, so here is where I get mine (and no i am not compensated in any way by these companies)*

The Corriedale Batt and Roving are from the Village Yarn and Fiber Shop 

The Drop Spindle is from True Creations http://www.truecreations.biz/wtdropspindles01.html
He is a local wood worker and you can find his spindles at the Village Yarn and Fiber Shop. 

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Little Bunnies♥

These bunnies are tiny at about 5.5 inches high but are ever so sweet.

Like my other bunnies these are made with merino wool felt and stuffed with   Bio Wool .

 I love the tiny bows and the heart shaped tummies!

These bunnies are now available for adoption at my etsy shop:)

This super cute little bunny was designed by Gingermelon. You can find the pattern in her shop http://www.etsy.com/shop/Gingermelon?ref=seller_info

Friday, February 28, 2014

Easter is coming!

It's about 7 weeks till Easter and time to start thinking about bunnies!
This years Mr. and Mrs. Bunny are looking quite springish in daffodil yellow and lime green.

These darling bunnies are hand stitched and embroidered by me. I use a merino blend wool  and stuff them with Bio Wool  (which means it hasn't been treated with yucky chemicals). The bunnies are about 7.5 inches to the tops of there ears and Mrs. Bunny has her cheeks lightly blushed with bees wax.

Mr. and Mrs. Bunny are now available for adoption at my Etsy shop https://www.etsy.com/shop/TookensTale
 They were made using another adorable pattern by Gingermelon. It's the Pocket Bunny pattern and you can find it at her etsy shop here http://www.etsy.com/listing/123577972/pocket-bunny-pdf-pattern?

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Two Little Kitties

These two adorable kitties are off to their new home! They were custom made for two dear sisters and the kitties are very happy they will get to play together.

They are made from merino wool blend felt and stuffed full of Bio Wool (which means happy sheep). Their dresses are made out of 100% cotton with lace trim and satin ribbon tied at the shoulders.  The pattern I used is Flora the Explorer by Gingermelon https://www.etsy.com/listing/171511318/flora-the-explorer-pdf-pattern-instant?ref=sr_gallery_6&ga_search_query=gingermelon+flora&ga_view_type=gallery&ga_ship_to=US&ga_search_type=all

I love making dolls from Gingermelon's patterns and I'm happy to do custom orders! It typically takes me 1 week to make a doll if I have the felt available 2 if I have to order it. I seem to get a lot of requests around Christmas and Easter so please contact me at least 4 weeks in advance if possible for the Holidays.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014


As I'm trying to catch up on my crafts from last year I realized I never made a post on my embroidery.

Last spring Gingermelon came out with a series of very cute embroideries. When I saw the "Walking the Dog" one I knew I had to get it. The girl in the picture had the same hairstyle as me!

The only problem was that I have a Boxer and the original had a sweet little wiener dog. So I drew up a new dog but left the rest of the embroidery the  same.

I really liked the mixing of coloured pencil and embroidery with beaded accents. It gives it a very soft look, and was fun to do, I haven't coloured in a while.

If you want to make one yourself you can find the pattern at Gingermelon's shop on Etsy https://www.etsy.com/listing/165565067/walking-the-dog-pdf-embroidery-pattern?ref=shop_home_active_19

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Happy New Year!

Oh, I can't believe it's already 2014!!!
I have a lot to catch up on.
I made this 18" Waldorf doll for a sweet little girl who loves purple and ladybugs over the summer.

I designed the smocking pattern for this dress. It took a few samples but I am happy with the way the final turned out. I found this beautiful cotton calico at Patricia's Fabric House.http://www.patriciasfabrichouse.com/ 
which is also where I found this adorable ladybug button.

 The sweater I knit out of Sublime (75%extra fine merino, 20% silk and 5% cashmere). It was wonderful to knit with. I'm sad to say that the shop I bought this yarn from The Yarn Boutique closed it's doors for good this past week. If I could encourage everyone to purchase from locally owned and small owner operated businesses when possible so we don't lose these more these gems.