Tag Archive: merino

New Yarns!

I’ve gotten a couple new yarn bases for Fall, and they are delightful! They’re both fingering weight, and will be carried in my Maiden Yarn store.

dscn2590

This one is a very smooshy single-ply of a wool and nylon blend. I think it would make gorgeous scarves, cowls, or even a shawl. I’ve already gotten to dye some up as a test, and this yarn is begging to be dyed in rich tones of a kettle-dyed nature.

As a side note – I will also be carrying a more familiar fingering base. The 70/30 merino/silk blend I’ve had in before. It’s a nice four-ply, non-superwash yarn with a little bit of shine to it. Lovely lovely.

In case you’re wondering, I’m moving Maiden Yarn to mainly fingering weight (my favorite to knit with) and spinning fiber at the beginning of October. It’ll simplify things for me, and allow me to offer a wider range of colors in the same weight (if not same fiber blend) of yarn. Plus, who doesn’t like fingering and sock weight?

I’m really rather excited, but I shall try to remain rational.

Time Weigheth Heavily

Well, it’s not so much the time that weigheth heavily as it is the seeming lack thereof. (Daily dose of Old English has now been administered.)

As for me, well, I’m up to my elbows in a pile of spinning projects. Lovely projects, for lovely people, but there seem to be tons of them.

First off, I’ve been working on spinning up some Aussie fur for a good friend. (Yes, dog fur.) It’s really soft and fluffy, and has been washed. Definite bonus. I’m spinning it on a spiffy new gadget I’ll have to tell you all about in a future blog post.

Theoretically this yarn will end up as a two-ply fingering weight, although there will be some DK weight bits in there, given the nature of the fiber. I carded the fur into batts, but it’s so fine that it spins more like a cloud, which results in a lot of difficulty keeping things even. And there seems to be different lengths of fur in there, which also makes things interesting.

All in all, it’s spinning up to be an interesting taupe color. Almost like sand.

Spring? Already?

It might just be me, but eighty-degree weather in the middle of March seems a bit early. Not that I’m complaining about all the lovely flowering trees outside. All those white and pink blossoms—not to mention the gorgeous red ones that I don’t know the name of—very lovely stuff.

Spinning and general crafting levels have been down as we’ve had lots of wonderful house guests for the last several weeks, but now things are grinding back towards normal and I can get back to spinning. And dyeing. Lovely dyeing.

Here’s my first stab at dyeing some mohair/silk laceweight in my Blackberry Jam colorway. I still get the yarn quivers whenever I look at this. Gorgeous.

I also managed to get way too much purple on a batch of Dawn Treader lace, and it turned out amazing. My only problem is that now I’ve got to come up with a name for the new colorway.

And then there’s the two-skein set of bulky weight that I just amazed myself with. How does one go about naming a combination of black, emerald green, and purple? I may wind up having to put a picture up here and run a name contest.

Indigo and Turquoise

I’ve been spinning and spinning away on the indigo-dyed merino, and I have three nice skeins done already. Hooray! I think once the whole batch is finished I shall have to get some “big pile of smooshy blue yarn” type photos.

I tell you, though, spinning this is really eating up the audiobooks. I’ve already done most of The Wind in the Willows, The Jungle Books (part one), and now The Hobbit. Thankfully I was able to get to the library the other day, so now I have The Children of Hurin and one of the Mitford series ready in reserve.

On the knitting front, I have plunged into another stash-busting project. This one is of the “knit until project measures x length” variety, and therefore works for movies and such. It’s called The Floopy Hat and is really just for kicks. And to use up the amazingly large stash of this amazingly turquoise and textured yarn.

New Adventures

I launched a new product today (with more coming) and I’m rather excited about them. They’re batt kits for those people lucky enough to own a drum-carder.
Coordinating colors in the nice, small amounts you need for blending a batt. The only trouble is how to go about spreading the word among the drum-carding community.

I also received permission to do something very exciting. Cyan Worlds gave me the green light on creating some Myst-inspired yarns! (Myst is a series of amazing computer games, very heavy on the visual arts side.) I get to make them! Yay!!!! I’d like to have them available in October sometime, but we’ll see what happens. It’s not like I’m creating the official Myst yarns or anything, but I’ll be able to have lots of fun with it, and, maybe, become the official Myst yarn person. I can dream.

And, last but certainly not least, this is the month of the indigo merino. I have almost an entire bobbin of singles done already.

More Samples

So my sister got some absolutely fabulous pictures of the many kinds of samples I sent, and I thought I’d share them.

Even Dyers Impulse Buy

When I first began dyeing my own yarn and fiber, some people thought I would never “need” to buy colored stuff again. Ha ha ha ha. That’s like saying “You cook, so you won’t ever need to buy food at a restaurant again.”

Or, if you want to get really out there, it’s like saying, “You stand up, why would you ever want to sit down again?”

There’s so much to be said for dyeing your own stuff, but every so often you want a break. And, as it happened this time, I found this gorgeous braid for sale. It’s a merino/mohair mix (a blend I’ve never bought before) and the colors jumped right off the screen and grabbed me. (Yes, it was scary, but a good scary.)

Isn’t it pretty? I don’t know what I’m going to do with it. The thought of a hat or smooshy cowl crossed my mind, or perhaps a little shawlette. I could go for socks, as it’s a four ounce braid, but I don’t particularly feel like spinning sock yarn right now. Ha, well, true, I probably won’t get around to spinning this until later this year. Oh, I bought it at FiberFancy, if you’d care to take a peek at some of the other lovely stuff there.

A Bit Of An Experiment


I took some time out the other day to dye up a few more rovings for Maiden Yarn. Unfortunately, I didn’t think ahead enough, and I found myself with pre-soaked four ounce bundles of roving, and no foil pans big enough to hold them.

I did have one non-disposable tray left, so I used it for one of the batches: this lovely repeat colorway. (You may recognize the color pattern from way back when. I dyed it first on some of the silver-gray Romney roving I bought at the Yellow Daisy Festival.) The fun thing about the repeats was that it braided up with colors to colors, as you can see. I’m really happy with the way that one turned out.

She’s Alive!

Hello, everyone. I wish I could say I’ve been spending these last months in darkest Peru, learning the secret arts of cochineal dyeing, but that would be far from the truth. The truth of the matter is that . . . (are you sitting down?) I’ve not been knitting or spinning much, if at all.

There. The painful bit is over. And so is the silence of the blogger! I didn’t have many projects of a fibery nature going, therefore I had nothing to blog about, therefore I didn’t blog, which led to more ventures into non-fiber hobbies, and you get the idea. It really was the Bermuda Triangle there for a bit. But, everyone needs a little lull from life-consuming hobbies at least once in a while, and I’ve had my lull. Now clear the pool, I’m coming in!

Garbage Bags

To lots of people garbage bags carry negative connotations. They symbolize things thrown away, things unwanted, smashed cereal boxes, banana peels, yesterday’s bacon grease, and other smelly things.

But, for spinners there is a magic about garbage bags because, when found in the right places, they usually contain fiber in vast quantities. Quantities so large, your ordinary bag won’t hold them. Sound exciting?

Well, while in Texas I was given an early birthday present. Two garbage bags full of cinnamon colored alpaca. Oh my goodness. Major fluffy soft.

And I even have a project idea for it! But, before I get to new project time, I have to overcome another project. Remember the indigo dyed merino? It’s decided to haunt me for some reason.