Wednesday, July 17, 2013

the Tour de Fleece, Phat Fiber, and shop updates

The Tour de Fleece is almost over!!!!

and i'm just now getting around to blogging about it lol.  I chose a hard road this TDF by trying to spin a fingering weight 3 ply yarn on my spindle.  it took me the first 16 or so days of tour just to do the spinning alone and it's going to take me a good 3 days just to do the plying!  here's a pic of me spinning out by the pool at my friends house 4th of July weekend

{ pool spinning time }

I should be finished with the plying by tomorrow so i'll get some pics up of what may be my 1 and only finished yarn of the tour this year.  after this one i doubt i'll be spinning this thin for a while, it's been a real test of my patience and endurance  ::whew::

in other news i've contributed to the Phat Fiber box 2 more months:  May and July.  i had to skip June because during May i was finishing up spring semester at Cal State Long Beach and just didn't have time to dye.

May's theme was "Superheroes" and i've been enamored of Gambit from the X-Men since i was a kid so i chose this pic as my inspiration:

{ the one and only Gambit <3 br="">

and here's a pic of the samples i sent in, hand carded roving buns ^.^ they're a mix of Corriedale, Superwash merino, Merino, Faux Cashmere, Milk fiber and Firestar.  

{ Gambit samples }

 since i missed the June box who's theme was "Villains" i decided to make my July samples a mix of that theme and the "Under the Sea" July theme and came up with one of my favorite Disney villains, Ursula

 { Bitch be fabulous }

I really like the way the fiber came out, so much so i might just save one of the full size braids to spin up myself!

 { Ursula samples and full size braids }

The theme for the month of August is "Entomology" and i have to admit i'm having a hard time coming up with inspiration for it.  not sure if i'll be contributing this month if i can't come up with something soon, so i guess we'll just see how that plays out.

In the mean time i have been working on a new item for my shop that i'm really excited about, my new "Sox Box" bag sets :D

{ the first Sox Box bag set }

I've had this idea floating around in my head for some time and just recently decided to get to work executing it.  The sets are made up of one of my original itty bitty boxxy bags for notions and a new cubic box bag that's perfect for knitting socks.  the little bag still snuggles perfectly in the bigger bag like my original Big n lil box bag sets, but this new design is a bit more compact so it can easily hang off your arm for sock knitting on the go.

{ a perfect fit for sock knitting projects }

I found this adorable owl fabric and bought a bunch of it so i made 3 of these Sox Box sets and have enough to make up 2 of my Big n lil sets i'll be sewing up this week.

but that's not all!!  I've also started dyeing a new "European Vacation" series inspired by beautiful pictures from different European countries, but i'll tell you all about that in my next blog post.  for now i bid you all adieu and wish you happy knitting/spinning/crocheting/crafting :)


Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Quarter yearly catch-up....again

i can't believe it's already been 4 months since my last blog post.  Life continues to be busy busy busy for me.  I'm now in my 2nd semester back at Cal State Long Beach and it's keeping me busy as ever.  I have however also been busy with my contributions to the Phat Fiber Sampler box, so here's a little catch up on what i've been doing :)

~ December ~

i have a friend in Norway who sent me this amazing picture a few winters ago, so when i heard the December Phat Fiber theme was going to be "Nordic Culture" i knew right away i wanted to use this pic as my inspiration.

{ Trondheim, Norway.  circa 2011 }
i was a total dope and forgot to snap pictures of my actual samples before i sent them in for this month so all i have is a pic of the full size below.  i tried to capture the dark periwinkle of the trees, the icy blue of the snow, and the pale blue, pink and white of the sky on lovely soft and crimpy BFL combed top.

 { "Snowy Norway" - December 2012 Phat Fiber Colorway }

after my december contribution i took a little hiatus from conrtributing while i was helping my boyfriend move in with me in early January hehe.  there was a lot to do to man-proof my apartment so i just didn't have the time.  I also started the new semester right at the end of January and so didn't end up contributing in February either.

~ March ~

but i came back with a bang last month contributing again for the Celtic themed march box.  being of irish and scottish ancestry myself i simply couldn't miss this one and chose as my inspiration the Celtic goddess Arduinna "Lady of the Forest."  I found this rad depiction of her below: 

{ the goddess Arduinna and her companion boar }

and this time i was smart enough to take pictures of my samples before sending them in.  this month i did a variegated gradient on superwash merino top, drawing on the brown of her boar, and the different lovely shades of green, blue-green, and yellow-green in this gradient. 

{ "Arduinna: Lady of the Forest" - March 2013 PF colorway }

~ April ~

and that brings us up to April.  this month's theme is "Secret Garden" and i chose to use rare orchids as my inspiration.  after perusing through pictures and finding 3 or 4 i liked i finally decided to go with this little beauty, Lockhartia Bennettii:

{ Lockhartia Bennettii orchid }

these rare orchids native to peru are less than 2cm in wide and have a flowering period of only about 2-4 weeks at the end of autumn/beginning of winter.  they are so lovely and delicate with such vibrant colors i knew they'd make a great dyeing inspiration.

{ "Lockhartia Bennettii Orchids" - April 2013 PF colorway }

i have to admit i'm a little bit in love with this colorway.  one of the things i love so much about contributing to the Phat Fiber box is that it's expanded my palatte when dyeing.  i've been using color combinations i don't think i personally would have thought of to use if not for the unique inspirations i've gotten from the box themes.  for this month i got some lovely soft faux cashmere combed top as my base.  it was the perfect base for this colorway because it's naturally a brilliant white, much like the snow white leaves of the lockhartia bennettii.

and there you have it folks, my Phat Fiber dyeing exploits for the past 4 months....whew.  i know i always say this and never make good on my promise, but i really am going to try to keep up more with this blog, hopefully at least once a month post pics of my Phat Fiber contributions now that i'm back contributing regularly again.

until next time happy crafting to all, as always :)