February 1, 2011

January Wrap Up

2011 is the year of finishing and stash busting for me, so I've got a moratorium on yarn buying for the year. The exception would be for special yarn required for gift knitting. During February I will be collecting and sorting through all the UFOs I can find (and finding them is a job in itself - they are hiding everywhere) to decide whether to finish or frog. I will also be inventorying all my yarn skeins, which are also all over the place and which will probably take me through March to finish. I've got a lot of yarn to use, sell, or trade (for fiber to spin), enough that if I was just using it up, it would last me for several years.

On/Off My Needles:
Still knitting on Shetland Pi shawl; and the Gluttony, BBS, Risk, Hermione and mom socks. Also got the urge to crochet a little, so I am crocheting washcloths from cotton and cotton/linen yarn in stash.

Nothing off my needles yet.

On/Off My Spindles:

Unlike the yarn moratorium there's no prohibition on fiber purchases for me this year. But, I do need to knit up some of the yarns I spun last year. Or sell them, or trade them for more fiber to spin.

During January i spun up samples of Dorset Horn, Cheviot, Romney, Falkland, and Welsh Mountain for the Wool Breeds Challenge. And I've posted about all but the Welsh Mountain. I'm really enjoying working with the different breeds and practicing different drafting/spinning techniques. What I'm looking for are the breeds that I would use either singly or blended as "My Breeds" for "My Yarns" (if I had my own line/lines of yarn, and why can't I?).

I'm looking forward to sampling Lincoln, Polwarth, Wensleydale, Jacob and maybe a Merino this month for the Breeds Challenge. The Polwarth and Merino I've spun before, but the others are new to me.

I finally finished spinning the Falkland combed top. I think it was only eight ounces but it seemed to go on forever! I expect I'll finish chain plying it this week.

I'm still combing/carding and spinning the Romney fleece. I'm about half way through the bag. Some of the fleece is softer in lock than others but I'm mixing it all together and it seems to balance out. I think spinning the combed fiber long draw helps add to the overall softness, and as a result, I'm much happier with the yarn I'm producing and Romney in general.  So much so that I've changed my mind and now would spin this again, albeit more likely blended with another (softer) breed.

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