Thursday, October 07, 2004

Current projects

Current projects include a pair of lace socks. I bought some 54's superwash from Little Barn just before last fall's "natural dye-in" for a local guild. There was a pot with cochineal and a touch of Queen Anne's lace - an absolutely fantastic scarlet! I dyed about 6 ounces, with no real plan for using it at that time.

Then I put major holes into my socks with the steel-toed shoes I must wear part of the time at work. New socks became a necessity before the winter winds begin! And I've been wanting to do a feather-and-fan version of socks for awhile. Since I prefer well-wearing socks, I starting spinning singles at about 45 wraps per inch. The cabled 4-ply I finally finished is rather ropy-feeling at the yarn stage, but the knitted sample fluffs up into a lovely, soft fabric after machine washing and drying. The superwash will tolerate that with only 5 percent shrinkage! While I'll almost certainly not machine dry these as a normal thing (even superwash has its limits), it's a valuable step in this fabric's finishing.

While one sock is complete, the other may have to wait awhile for finishing - my other project has a deadline!

I made a rectangular shawl/scarf for my mother-in-law last Christmas. Chose a basic Orenburg edging, and a Shetland center in the candle flame pattern, and decided to knit the Shetland wool two-ply handspun in Orenburg fashion. It's spectacular, and she loves it. What I didn't expect was that my mother would get jealous! So now I've started another for her for this year's holiday from the remainder of the Shetland. I wanted one for myself...oh, well, it's a excuse to buy more fiber!

I started spinning gossamer-weight singles of 60 wpi, two-plyed them into a 48 wpi yarn, and am knitting on size 4 circulars to get a very light, lacy fabric. I chose a Leaf Lace Pattern for the center, a faggotted border, and a simple Doris edging. Again, I chose to work in Orenburg fashion, since I truly dislike "finishing" a project and then having to go all the way back around and join an edging in order to truly complete it.

The spinning is still going on, although I've done the first 400 of the 800 yards it will likely take to finish. The knitting is going slowly, but it IS going. I've completed the lower edging and border, turned the corners and done three repeats of the full width now. Only 24 more to go before I start the upper border and edging!

The knitting and necessary spinning are cutting into my "wanna do" project, though. I'd like to get back to spinning the sari silk waste for a sweater - but it will have to wait until the Christmas gifts are done!

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