Monday, October 31, 2016

Sweet and spicy


First off, let me share my latest skein of handspun – this is the most recent shipment from Sheepspot’s Breed School Fiber Club. IMG_4190The breed is Whitefaced Woodland (super rare) and the colorway is “Painted Lady.” That sounds a little lurid, but I think these colors are so sweet together. I spun a worsted yarn and made a 3-ply yarn. I was aiming for a DK weight yarn and might have achieved it (how do you tell REALLY – those control card gizmos are so subjective to use). At any rate, I got about 208 yards in 96 grams. Think that’s DK?IMG_4424

I understand there will be a handspun KAL soon in the Breed School group, and the pattern I liked best is DK. So I’m ready.IMG_4049

In other knitting news, this adorable pack of mini-skeins fell into my cart when I was shopping online for yarn to make a baby sweater. In my defense, I had no yarn in stash that would work for the baby sweater. And also in my defense, if your order at WEBS goes above $60, you get a 20% discount – so these beauties were an amazing deal when you factor that in. This is a Party of Five set from Sweet Georgia yarns and they are every bit as luscious in person as they look in this photo.

Fast forward a few weeks. I ran across a Gilmore Girls KAL on Ravelry and was intrigued. Kris and I dug a little deeper, and naturally, came up with a pro/con list:

  • Pro: We love GG and were already rewatching seasons 1-7 in anticipation of the A Year in the Life miniseries coming next month
  • Con: We did not adore the main color yarn in the kit
  • Pro: the contrasting mini-skeins were adorable
  • Pro: maybe we could make it from stash instead of buying the yarn kit
  • Con: the pattern calls for Aran weight yarn and we had hardly any in stash… and we didn’t want to buy new yarn for this
  • Pro: we reminded ourselves that we are in charge of our knitting and we can have our own KAL that happens to coincide with the GG miniseries if we want to!

Long story short, we decided to make the On the Spice Market shawl and work from stash. We shared the idea with our knitting group and a bunch of people are making it now – maybe 5 or 6? I’ll try to get some photos of everyone’s version! I actually swatched for this:IMG_4422

My initial vision was to use that gray yarn (hardy sock yarn that I got in Iceland) for the main color, and the gradient set as the contrast colors. But as I worked, I could feel a big difference between the gray yarn and the greens… the gray was toothsome while the greens were sleek. They just didn’t seem right together. So I dove back into the sock yarn cabinet and came up with a skein of Knit Picks Bare (“bare” as in “undyed”) that had been there for years. I bought it when Steven and I dyed sock yarn forever ago and apparently I bought a lot. The yarn doesn’t have nylon in it, so I ignored it for socks after some point in my sock knitting development. I think it will work here.2016-10-31_1854

Also – the pattern calls for SIX contrasting colors, and the Party of Five set only has, well, FIVE. So I entertained a lot of ideas for color number six (which is actually CC1). Eventually I went with a deep blue. IMG_4438

Here is the very beginning of it. You can see my beautiful green Needle Keeper. Bonny, that was an excellent tip – and it came at just the right time for my son to give it to me for my birthday. He actually got me two of them. So YES I matched my green Needle Keeper to go with this project. Sometime in the future you might get a glimpse of the blue one with another project!

That’s enough of an update for now… I hear the siren call of Halloween candy.


  1. Your spinning is gorgeous Janelle! Wow that turned out so nicely! I started watching the GG's today (yes, I must have lived in a box because I never watched them!) But, anyway they are going to get me through a sweater in short order I hope! I found another GG MKAL that starts late November:

    I am debating on whether to get yarn or do some stash diving....

  2. As enticing as the previous peeks were, these up close and personal details are even better! I'll be looking forward to seeing what your lovely handspun becomes, as well as watching your Spice Market grow. A pro/con list is certainly appropriate for your GG KAL, and I'm glad you're finding the Needle Keepers as useful as I do.