Sunday, June 17, 2012

Tour de Fleece!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

I have just learned that Ravelry is having a spin-along called Tour de Fleece, to coordinate with the Tour de France. We will "spin" right along with the cyclers as they "spin" their tyres. :) This spin-along has been an annual event since 2006, although this is the first year I have heard of it. You can join as many teams as you like and the object is to spin everyday that the cyclers ride, from June 30 to July 22. No spin days are July 10 and July 17, just like the actual tour. There will "challenge" days the same as the tour also which you chose a challenging spinning activity. I have joined three teams: Rookies 2012, Spun Out 2012, and Support Spindlers 2012. I have included badges for Spun Out and Support Spindlers that you can click on for more information. The rookies don't seem to have a badge yet, but I have included a badge for the Ravelry Tour de Fleece page for complete rules. There will prizes for various competitions.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Wartime Rationing

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

My new passion is recipes from wartime rationing. I'm on the lookout for recipes from this period after seeing a few episodes of "Wartime Kitchen and Garden" produced by the BBC. There are eight episodes but unfortunately the BBC never made the show onto DVD or even VHS. I accidentally came across three episodes on You Tube and loved it. I am searching for the other five episodes, hopefully I will find all eight together. The show is about rationing during WWII in England and is a reenactment documentary that is highly enjoyable and informational. There are recipes, gardening tips and everyday homemaking tips that can be used in today's households.

I did manage to find a book based on the same TV show. It is more of a history book about wartime rationing than just a cookbook. Like the show, it is packed full of informational tidbits that I am going to use. Now, I am after more wartime rationing cookbooks. I am interested to learn what the women of those days were able to create with such a limited supply.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Lap Support Spindle Bowl

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Look what came in the mail today! Another gorgeous item from Grizzly Mountain Arts. This is made of Ambrosia maple wood and is made beautifully. It sits in between my legs and I use my Russian spindle with it. I am all set up and ready to go!

Tonight I am going to ply some silk. Last night after I spun the cob weight silk, I found it to be rather difficult to knit on my needles. I'll have to try and crochet it as I have some extremely small needles that may work better.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Spinning Silk

Monday, June 4, 2012

I didn't like the way the baby alpaca felt after I spun it. It was wirey and scratchy. I think I may have spun it too tight. I'll go back to it at a later time.

I was eager to try spinning silk on my new Russian spindle. I have lots of silk hankies and started some on a drop spindle. But, it was super easy on the Russian spindle! I could easily spin cobweb weight! So, I believe for now I will practice my exquisite heirloom range items in 100% silk.

Below in the pictures you can see the cobweb weight I was able to spin with the silk and a thicker strand complete with some nubs.

Over the Weekend

It was a nice and quiet weekend with some productivity. Dave and I went to an information day for the local volunteer ambulance service. Dave already volunteers for the SES and fire brigade and basically went along with me for support and the free sausage sizzle. :-) Our local ambo service is now down to four volunteers! It's something I have always been curious about and wanting to do. But, I wanted to gather the information and go home to have a think about it. When we got home Dave said he was going to sign up! So, I also made up my mind to volunteer also. They give you a three month trial period and I'll see how I go during that period.

Also over the weekend I taught myself to use a Russian support spindle. I really like this method as I can sit in my recliner with a cat on my lap while watching tv and spin! I find this method so much more relaxing than the spinning wheel. I am wanting to be able to spin lace weight (cobweb weight) yarn to make lace-y items. The picture below is of some brown cria (baby alpaca) fleece. Last night I washed two skeins I spun up and today I'll knit and crochet them. I haven't plied them, because I want to see if un-plied fine yarn will hold up.

The spindle is handmade from Grizzly Mountain Arts, located in Oregon, USA. These are exquisite pieces of art and I'm so happy with my purchase. He doesn't take orders as he can't keep up with the demand. Instead, he posts on his FB when he has listed spindles in his Etsy shop. You have to be quick, as the are sold within minutes! I am very lucky to have gotten one! Grizzly Mountain Arts

My Russian spindle is a Mini Myrtlewood Russian Support Spindle Travel Set. It weighs 15 grams (.48 ounces) with both bead rings on, 14 grams(.45 ounces) with one bead ring and 13 grams (.42 ounces) with no bead rings. So, it's actually three different size spindles in one! This may be my new method of spinning as it so portable.

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