Jobo Designs

Letting the crafty creative juices flow. Knitting, spinning, crafting, dyeing, rabbits, sheep and more!

20. February 2012 09:21
by Jobo
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A Care Package? with some spinner?s inspiration ? Satin Angora

20. February 2012 09:21 by Jobo | 0 Comments

Since I?ve been feeling a bit blue the last little while since the baby came? a friend sent me a care package in the mail with some nice tea and a handful of soft fluffy spinning inspiration ? some of her own home grown Satin Angora Fiber from her bum ?Lady in Red?! (if you want to check out Stella?s Farm Page, click the linky!  She has lots of different breeds of rabbits, sheep and alpacas.  I?m so jealous!  It?s called Twist of Fate Family Farm)

It?s been difficult to find much time for anything other than baby lately, so having a bit of satiny shiny light fiber just sitting there has been quite inspiring!  Just what I needed to kick me in the pants and pick up a spindle and see what I can do with it.

First off ? the staple length is great on this one.  It?s nice and long, so it spins up nice and strong, but not so lengthy that it?s hard to draft.  In a way, this spin reminds me a bit of working with silk, especially when I get a poof with a few extra guard hairs in it and feel the strong soft shiny fiber slide through my hands.  Angora in general is a bit slippery, but that?s nothing new to me :)  The color is a creamy, almost peach color, with auburn or rusty tips.  I love the way the two tones are blending together to give a shiny gold effect.

satin angora staple

My plan was to just spin it fine and see how things went from there? and then I got the idea that maybe it would be suited to pair with some natural honey colored tussah silk, since the color is working out to be a nice gold/creamy/shiny effect.  I?ve been working on a zebisis designs stone whorl spindle, with a weight I can?t remember off the top of my head.  I don?t work with heavy spindles, so I can assume it?s much less than 30g? more likely 15 ? 17g.  After the fiber comes off, I?ll weigh it and remind myself. 

satin angora spindle

I hope to be able to get enough yardage to make something small and lacy.  If I can manage 400 yards or more, I might even get a shawl out of it since I?m stretching the angora out by plying it with silk.  I can?t wait for the silk to arrive in the mail? though I?m not sure what I?m so impatient for:  it will likely take me all month to spin the angora?!

17. February 2012 05:57
by Jobo
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Startitis… and why I needed to start something new I’ll never get to work on…

17. February 2012 05:57 by Jobo | 0 Comments

- Stress is a funny thing… it makes us do strange things.  In the 6 weeks since my daughter was born I’ve gotten very little time to myself.  I often don’t manage to get cleaned up and have a shower before my husband gets home at suppertime;  I am so exhausted I need many naps throughout the day;  I spend many many hours trapped under a 10 lb cutie pie while she nurses. 

- Why-oh-why then did I need to start a new project?  My Monkey socks are still languishing (though they make an excellent purse-project, if I ever leave the house sans-infant again) and unfinished for the time being, staring at me from the coffee table like mean little orange beasts (neener neener… look at us sitting here, and you CANT work on us right now!). 

- One evening when my Mom was here visiting, she helped me wind a new skein of yarn into a ball, so that I’d have something pretty to play with once the socks were done.  This is, of course, assuming that they will ever actually *be* done… lol.

Erato in String Theory Black Cherry 1

- This is the yarn… and hence the reason I couldn’t resist it.  The yarn is so freaking pretty!  and cheery!  and bright shiny beautiful red!  (and contains cashmere) and in general makes me want to feel it up and carry it around with me in my pocket.  That’s how I knew *it* needed to become a scarf or a shawl or something that could literally walk around with me all day.  (also discussed in a previous post – linky)

- Yarn:  String Theory Caper Sock – in Black Cherry

- The Project:  Erato by Romi Hill which is one of the patterns from year 2 of the small shawls e-book. 

- I get email updates every time a new shawl becomes available… and it’s such a terrible tease!  I love all of the patterns, to the point of going into the stash and digging for yarn practically every time the ebook updates on Ravelry… though I don’t always follow through, bob-darnit, I have a skein of yarn that I think matches each and every pattern.  If only there were 28 hours in a day… and chocolate magically appeared in the bowl on my coffee table…

Erato in String Theory Black Cherry 2

- I haven’t made a lot of progress, though I’ve managed to cast on (win!) and work the first few charts (win win!) and get comfortable with the pattern in general so I don’t need to focus so darned hard (win win win!) 

- Side note:  sleep deprivation is cruel, and I am not a very smart or organized person on 2 hours of sleep.  Someone should tell my child this; she is ruining mommy’s knitting productivity.  Also, I have not yet devised a strategy to successfully knit while breastfeeding.  If you have a magic formula for this:  please advise!  (We could make a lot of money with that information!)

- My favorite part so far?  the little twisty cable columns!  So cute, and not that complicated now that I’ve done a few of them. 

- Bonus?  the majority of the rows are stockinette (score!) with just a few elements thrown in to keep things interesting.  Even sleep deprived new mommies can do stockinette (or so I keep telling myself between frogging sessions)

- Current location:  Chart E, starting 3rd repeat.  That leaves another E, F, G and H.  I might finish this shawl sometime in 2012… gosh I hope I get to knit enough to finish it before Romy graduates from college…

15. February 2012 09:36
by Jobo
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Monkey Socks? perfect knitting for Labor?

15. February 2012 09:36 by Jobo | 0 Comments

- I needed something easy but interesting to bring with me to the hospital work on the day that labor was induced? so I opted for another pair of Monkey Socks (Cookie A.)

- I had done these once before, so I knew the pattern was well written, and I also remembered that the basic construction was straightforward and I could work on them without really needing any paper pattern.  I took a photo of the main chart with my phone, so I?d have that to fall back on, but other than that, I just needed stitch counts to get started.

- I knit all morning while the contractions were getting started.  I worked the cuff, and then 3 repeats of the pattern design before things got too hairy and I needed to stop.  After the epidural I was exhausted and a little woozy, so I had to put the knitting away after that.

- Yarn:  Knitpicks Stroll Solid in Pumpkin                   - Needles:  2.5 mm Circular

Romy's Monkey 1

- Progress:  Normally I eat socks for breakfast.  I can knock off a whole pair of socks in a week or less when I?m feeling particularly focussed.  Compare that to now:  I finished sock number one around the 4 week post-partum mark? and sock number two is cast on, but only halfway to the heel so far.  At this rate, I?m looking at not finishing these until March sometime!  I?m finding that I?m gradually getting more time to myself with the little beasty having a little more independence, but still not what I was accustomed to? not by a long shot.  She is wonderful, but is seriously interfering with fiber and knit time!  sheesh kid!

- Strangely enough, it turns out that my Daughter, Romy is also a little Monkey.  I wonder if it?s a coincidence?  Or maybe she?s just following in her father?s footsteps.  He?s also a bit of a baboon sometimes *wink*

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