Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Happy Valentine's Day

We are currently digging out of a huge snowstorm that hit us yesterday and the day before. We probably got 10 inches around here so I have been staying inside a lot and playing with my fiber. I went to Wool, Warp, and Wheel on Sunday and took my last spinning lesson on how to spin down fibers. We spun some yak which is very short and "downy". I'm not sure I have the technique down (no pun intended) as he had me overspin it some and it was too much. You apparently have to add a lot of twist to keep the fibers from slipping and you spin it worsted with a short draw to keep the yarn from having any air in it and creating a weak spot. I have some more yak and I also own some so I will practice this and see if I can create a nice looking yarn from it. It is apparently very warm as yak as a down fiber is very warm even when not allowed any air in it. It was interesting but I'm not sure I'm excited to do anything in yak. But it's a good technique to know so I will practice it.

I am working on a second hat for my Canadian friend and it will have some cables on it. I've never done cables before so it will be fun. I'm substituting yarn, using angora of course, so I started and tore it out probably 6 times. I think I have it now. I'm adapting a pattern that was not knit in the round, which seems weird to me. I bought this book called "Hats gloves scarves" by Louisa Harding and NONE of the hats are knit in the round. That just seems strange to me. So I am changing the patterns. It has some nice patterns in it but they are just done oddly. I don't want to make a seam on a hat, seems wasteful and will make a back to it which I don't like.

I also have been combing some of my 20 lbs of white merino that I had processed and which turned out terrible. It wasn't the mill's fault. I bought a junk fleece and added it to a nicer one I had and so there are tons of noils all through it. If I comb out the really short stuff, there is some nice merino left and I have spun that up extra fine. It is a true laceweight and I will probably make a shawl with it. It won't pill so badly if I make something that doesn't get a lot of wear. I toyed with adding angora to it but am afraid to put my beautiful angora with this questionable merino. I will save the angora to blend with some good stuff.

It is Valentine's Day which is not normally a good day to be single. But I feel grateful today to be where I am in my life. I am working to focus on the things I do have rather than dwelling on the things I don't have. I do have great friends and family and so have lots of love in my life. I feel like I have a path to follow and I intend to focus on where I am going and where I am right now. I have to keep asking myself, "What can I do right now to move in a positive direction?" And then I move to make that happen. That way I don't get bogged down or discouraged as often. Life is a journey and I am taking it one step at a time.

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