This is the first wheel that I got to borrow from my spinning teacher. It’s really pretty, but after practicing treadling, I think I want one with a double treadle (two foot pedals). I also need either a cat-free room to keep it in or a cover. Serra loves the wheel. She keeps visiting it and trying to make nice to the drive (the string that connects the big wheel to the bobbin and another part that I cannot recall the name for). I can’t wait to start making yarn!
Despite not being able to spin yet, I managed to acquire quite a bit of yarn this week.
It started out a a legitimate need. A month or so ago, Linnea had the brilliant idea to actually use her Knitting Guild membership and take a few of their correspondence courses. She wants to do the Masters Course, but she started with the Basics, Basics, Basics course just to warm up.
I thought Linnea’s idea was fantastic! I do not belong to the Knitting Guild, but I am a member of the Crochet Guild of America. Since the Crochet Guild has similar courses, I figured it would be cool to get a masters cerificate. I sent off my application (and the fee, of course) and waited a few days. On Monday I got this in the mail:
Woo-hoo! I read the course like a recipe to see what ingredients I had and which ones I needed. I had all but one of the hooks I would need, but I had none of the yarn. You need a light colored, smooth yarn for the swatches. I had light colored and fancy, I had dark colored and smooth, and a few things that were both light colored and smooth, but not in sufficient quantities. Not a big deal – I do love to go yarn shopping.
For a course like this, I decided it was best to use inexpensive but decent quality yarns. I think wool-ease is a good standard yarn to work with. You can get plenty of it, it isn’t expensive, and it comes in several colors.
I’ve made a few swatches already. I won’t post them all here just because I am not really sure what the guild does and does not want posted on the internet. However, it doesn’t hurt to give all the crocheters some sort of teaser!
I apparently picked a great time to start my crochet masters course. The craft store was having a big sale this week (you have to go to the brick-and-mortar store – the online store is different) on a lot of yarn that I already like. I have received a lot of requests for dishcloths (from family, mostly), so I bought a bunch of Lily Sugar and Cream. As a side note, if you are in a bind at Christmas and need to get a gift out fast, make dishcloths. When you give them to the recipient, the first thing you get is a mildly disappointed look. She (or he, but for grammar’s sake I’ll say she) has no idea at this point what she is getting. A few weeks later the recipient will just try the stupid dishcloth, and she will see that it is so much better than any other dishcloth she has ever owned. In fact, she may even be inspired to call you and tell you how wonderful that thing is. In a few months she’ll be asking for more because the ones you made will wear out and she will discover that she can’t go back to store-bought. This is an opportunity for you. You can either: A) teach this person to knit her own, or B) make the (quick and easy) dishcloths as gifts for the rest of this person’s life. Either way, you win.
Clearance is a great way to enhance your stash as well. There was some Vanna’s Choice yarn on clearance (probably last season’s colors or something) and I decided to give it a try. I mean, for $0.97/skein, you can’t go wrong. It’s acrylic, but it feels relatively soft and it comes in good colors.
I got a few other random sale yarns as well, and one of them I will use for a Kristy hat. Speaking of which, I finished a sixth hat at the Stitch-and-Pitch game in San Francisco. Carisa gave me the yarn for this one to use for the Kristy hats. It is another colorway of some yarn we got for free at the Knit and Crochet Show when it was in Oakland. My friend Melinda thinks that her mother would like the yarn, so I gave her the leftovers.
Our knitting group has finished quite a few hats for Kristy. We have more than the 15 I was sure we could do, and we’re still going. This is a great way to use up stash yarn.
I’ll leave you with some shots of the Tuesday night Stitch-and-Pitch game.
This is the first time I’ve seen string quartet play the National Anthem at a baseball game.
Our seats were decent. We got to see the Giants hit 3 homeruns!
One of the big reasons I like to go to the ballpark is the food. The garlic fries are always exciting. Sometimes they are so garlicky that you taste it for weeks, and sometimes they are milder. We got milder fries this time.
It was a good night to be out with fellow stitchers!