Jobo Designs

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

11. December 2008 20:50
by Jobo
0 Comments

Spinning up a storm!

11. December 2008 20:50 by Jobo | 0 Comments

 You know what... I think winter has arrived... ewwww.  It's only the beginning of December, and I have almost had my fill already.  The only thing sustaining me at this point is the fireplace, some comfort food, and warm hugs from you know who ;)

 For a treat, decided to make some homemade butter tarts (one of my all time favorites)  Complete with Gramma's secret family recipe pie crust and big sticky raisins and of course copius quantities of butter and brown sugar.  I realized part way through (after trying pretty much every sized glass in the kitchen sadly) that an empty 19 oz can of tomatoes was the perfect size to cut out my dough circles to fit in standard muffin tins.  Will be keeping that trick up my sleeve next time I have to make tart shells for sure.  Paired up with a cold glass of milk and a warm fire, doesn't get much better than that, even if the wind is howling and the snow is a blowin!

 Feeling the spinning bug this week... I had received a sample of roving with another order the other day from Fiber Optic Yarns - Superwash merino / Nylon mix "footnotes Unspun"  This of course being the perfect excuse to haul out the Traveller and spin for a little bit.  Since it was only a tiny sample, I plied it up with some supersoft natural polworth top I had lying around.  This turned out quite nice, very soft, spongy and attractive in the end.  Will definetly consider buying some more products from this company.  The colourway was:  #57 Sweet Georgia Brown.





In other knitting news... making some serious progress on christmas gifts!

     Afghans!  one finished, one 46/50 rows!  yay for me

     Socks! 3 pairs

     Scarf! 80% done

     Fingerless Mittens! 2 pairs

     Swiffer Cover / Dishcloths! one of each!

Santa would be proud no? 

27. October 2008 14:02
by Jobo
0 Comments

Boo! Its a Halloweeny Post!

27. October 2008 14:02 by Jobo | 0 Comments

Do you ever feel like you have a million things on the go, but somehow nothing new completed?  Well thats how I feel these days.  The weather is changing finally here, the leaves are turning wonderful reds and oranges, and the wind has a certain nip... Fall is definetly here.

This year has been declared the Autumn of soups and casseroles... comfort food yum!  And of course, since I have never really been a soup or casserole maker, this is all new.  It's like mad kitchen science - soup creation labs. 

Here is the latest creation: 

Italian Wedding Soup... Which may look complicated, but it ridiculously easy!

- Remove the casings from 5-6 Mild Italian Sausages, and form into small meatballs, approximately 1 - 2 cm round.  Cook in a frying pan, make sure these are completely done, as they wont really have time to cook fully in the soup.  Drain fully.  I even let mine drain on paper towels similar to what I would do with Bacon, just to get the excess greasiness off.  Set aside for later.

-Prepare 1 medium onion, 2 Carrots, 2 Sticks of Celery - all chopped into about the same sized pieces

- In a heavy bottom Pot, saute the veggies on medium heat with a splash of olive oil, and a sprinkle of salt.  Cook about 10 minutes, or until the veggies start to get glossy and softened.  

- Add spices to taste - I added freshly cracked black pepper, and about 1 tsp of Dried Rosemary and Thyme, and 1 tbsp Dried Parsley.  You could add more or less... up to you. Saute for about 5 more minutes (ok, so the kitchen smells really excellent at this point!)

- Next, add about 8-10 cups of chicken stock (I like the Campbells' low sodium Chicken Broth you can get at the supermarket... for when you don't have a spare chicken carcass laying around) and simmer on med-low, try not to let it boil, just simmer away for about 30 minutes.

- Add the Meatballs prepared earlier,and continue to simmer.  Once the meatballs are heated through you could serve it there, or let it simmer longer on the stove if you want.

- For an extra treat, I added Tiny round pasta (about 1/2 cup) about 15 minutes before serving (you could use whatever you have in the kitchen, or little alphabet noodles if there are children at your table)  Some recipes mention adding Spinach leaves also at this point, where they would wilt and also give their flavour to your soup.  I didn't bother this time with the spinach.

- This soup is great as leftovers the next day, or for work lunches, but remember, the longer the noodles sit in the broth, the soggier they get.  If you were planning on making this ahead, I would perhaps not add the noodles until just before you wanted to serve it.

 
Aromatic Vegetables on Parade...



Finished soup!  Hungry?

 

On the Crafting front...

ever notice how your projects sometimes go seasonal without you even realizing it?

I have been working on blending some Black Superfine Merino with just a touch of the Pewter/Silver colored Carbonized Bamboo I had leftover from another project.  This stuff seems to be turning out really soft and smooth.  My goal was to create some Worsted or heavier weight, but the singles feel so nice, they may end up being consumed as they are :)  Definetly love those hand cards... very simple to use, and there is something so back-to-basics about the combing of wool and then spinning those fluffy rolags.  



Also on a Halloweeny note... I decided I should use up some of the sock yarn I've accumulated over the years.... and started a scarf.  A few years back, I found a whole bunch of Bernat Sox sold color sock yarn on sale at Zellers, and couldn't help myself.  I think I bought 2 balls of every colour there!  (Yeah I know, bad knitter!  bad!)

I have always admired knitted lace shawls and stoles, so I decided to try out the"Woodland Shawl" pattern on Ravelry.  I'm finished of one ball... about 3.4 of the next to go.  here is a sneak peak! It's kindof a burnt orangy colour. 



And just to finish off -some orange "Chinese Lanterns" from my Gramma's Garden...

Trick or Treat!!

14. September 2008 11:44
by Jobo
0 Comments

The Cure for the "Denim Blues"

14. September 2008 11:44 by Jobo | 0 Comments

Still not over the carding cravings yesterday, so I thought I would use up the last bit of the "Hamlet" 100% Merino Batts I had bought to make Marky some socks. 

There was a little over 5-6 oz left, so definetly enough to make it worthwhile... and plus the original batts were kindof chunky strands of sky blue, pale blue and black, so using my new carders made it easy to blend things a bit better.  When I made the socks, I had blended this fiber with some natural gray carbonized bamboo, which made for some squishable soft fingering weight wool.  (see pics of man + socks below)  The finished carded rolags were so fluffy and soft... when I took them outside to take a pic of them, one nearly blew away in the fall breeze!When I mixed the batts a little more, I got a sort of worn faded denim color, just right for another pair of socks likely, though I think this 100% wool yarn will knit up a little different than the bamboo blend... likely will have more fluff and bounce (not to mention the fact that I spun this yarn woolen, as opposed to semi worsted last time)

This next pic seems to show the colour best, smokey worn faded denim blue.  As time goes on, I am actually getting better at producing a more consistant yarn.... I thought it would take me a lot longer to get a useable product, but surprisingly, no.  I had been saving some of my fancy luxurious fiber purchases until I knew what I was doing, but maybe that will be here sooner than I thought?  who knows.  I might have to start on the Merino/Angora/Mohair blend I got a few months back.  Maybe that sweater isnt' far over the horizon? 



This is a pic of the original batt I started with.  I got it from a great company on Etsy - (www.theranch.etsy.com)  They were one of the first places I bought spinning fiber, and I have found that everything I get is exactly as pictured, and is wonderfully prepared and ready to spin.  This particular batt was called "Hamlet" and I think the colourway was named after a family pet? The Carbonized Bamboo was a dream to work with... felt like silk!




And Finally the Marky Bamboo Merino Blend Socks.  Nothing like having a woman who will spin ya some wool, then knit ya homemade socks?  Men out there, eat yer hearts out! (this pattern can be found for free on ravelry from Marimi Knits - called "Ankle Socks")

 

Powered by BlogEngine.NET | Theme: Yoko by Elmastudio, adapted by onesoft

Top