Busy Bee!

I’ve been so busy. Great-busy, happy-busy. I’m going to allow myself to play until 7 o’clock, then I have to get back to the final dummy on my book, which I haven’t gotten to far into, but which has already caused me a few hissy fits.

With Yarn School and the Renegade Craft Fair rapidly approaching, I’m swelling with creative energy. Okay, that sounded gay as a whistle.

But it’s true! When I finish some more up, I’ll photograph the weirdo dolls Ron & I make. I finally finished my wheel, so I could add pictures of the utterly fabulous wheel + fiber kit to the Yarn School page:

Last night, I finally assembled my wheel, after many delays and much hand-wringing over the finish. So in honor of my new wheel, I made my very first batt, which I’m going to spin into some very poorly-made yarn as soon as I post this! Isn’t she pretty? From the front, she looks like my friend, Leslie. If you know Leslie, you’ll see the resemblance.

Side:

and butt:

It’s made of odds and ends of commercial top and roving (dyed and natural browns & blues), plus washed fleece from a sheep called Shy Butterfly.

When I figure out her name, I will inscribe and date her. I love it, but I’d probably go another way if I had it to do over. The good news is that I have the self-awareness to know I’d feel this way no matter what, that I am impossible to please. Soon enough, I’ll forget and be completely happy with it. I think the color in the first picture is a little more true. The pictures make it look flatter. In real life, you can see more grain, and the stain-over-wash has slighty inkier, less uniform appearance. The glossy finish kind of obscures it in the pictures.

Finally, I present, displayed in what will, sadly (because don’t they look marvelous?) not be their final resting place, my Louet samples. They’re very mad scientist all stacked up in the case. There are 68 samples. Very! Exciting! I’m going to make a sample book or display of some kind from a strip of glob of each, then spin the rest when I’m improved enough to deserve it.

Here’s what’s inside (and because I’m anal, and because I have a scale right here on my desk, I weighed them all):

Sheep

Light Coopworth

White Coopworth

Medium Coopworth medium brown, spreckled with gray

Dark Coopworth, dark brown, also spreckled

Carded Corriedale

Corridale top (light–.5oz)

Fine Shetland (light–.2 oz, an outrage!)

Fine gray Shetland

Fine brown Shetland

Fine black Shetland, pretty black, with little white salts

Fine Shetland (light–.2 oz, an outrage!)

White Norwegian top

Black Norwegian top (which, interestingly, is medium brown)

Lincoln top

Welsh top

Brown Welsh top, very dark brown, salted with white

Wensleydale top

Light grey Swalesdale

Dark blue-faced Leister, medium brown

Blue-faced Leicester (2 bags)

Black merino wool top

Carded colored merino sliver, heathery medium brown

Grey Icelandic top

Falkland top

Finn top

South African top (light–.6 oz)

Alpaca

White alpaca (2 bags)

Almost white alpaca

Gray/brown alpaca top

Gray alpaca top

Light brown alpaca top

Medium brown alpaca

Black alpaca

Goat

Almost white cashmere

Light brown cashmere

Black mohair top (these blacks are BLACK, baby. Must be dyed?)

Honey mohair (a bit heavy–1.5oz)

Doll mohair

Fine mohair

Goat hair, brendle (not goat down, the coarse hair. Can’t imagine what you’d want that for–rope? doormats?)

Exotics

Baby camel top

Brown camel top

Yak top, brown (light–.2 oz.)

Creamy yak top

Brown llama

Baby llama top, brown

Angora (light–.6oz)

Silk

Tussah silk

Tussah silk noils (light–.4oz)

Cultivated silk sliver

Cultivated silk noils

Plant/wood fibers

Ramie

Bright viscose top

Hemp noils, whatever those are

Hemp fiber

Bleached flax top

Superfine flax top (and can I just say: P.U.!)

Water retted flax top

Euroflax long stricks

Flax waste (?)

Blends

Cotton/silk

Natural Merino/silk top Cashmere silk, in sort of a creamy gray and white blend

Cashgora top (2 bags)

50/50 angora/lambswool

Alpacoop

Seabreeze, a blend of dyed orange and tans, which might be natural

Pretend

Fake cashmere

Sparkling white icicle

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