What I’ve been doing lately! A ton of dying really. I’ve started making sure I experiment every time I dye or else I am never going to create anything new. I’m getting everything ready for the next show we’ve got as well; Kitchener/Waterloo is coming up as well as Vancouver’s Knit City. I’m looking forward to both because they’re both really good shows!
Most of the dying I’ve been doing lately is for Yarn Crush. It’s a yarn club where you receive a skein of yarn in a warm, cool, or neutral colour. I am lucky enough to be the chosen dyer for their September box! It’s been lots of fun making custom colours for these boxes, but I am now getting to the point where I have to actually dye a lot of the yarn. I can’t wait to share with you the colours and actual names I came up with, but I am not going to give away the secret sauce. I’ll just tell you it’s awesome, as you should have guessed.
I’ve been experimenting with self-striping sock yarns more and more. There are going to be a lot more colours coming up for these shows! I am really looking forward to see what everyone thinks. I’ve been using Harry Potter as an inspiration since all of my friends have read the Cursed Child… except me. I really need to read it before the shows because I know people are going to want to talk about it if I have HP inspired yarn. The only thing about dying all sorts of new yarn is the fact that you have to knit all the swatches to show off the stripes! I think I am going to start a course of positive reinforcement to deal with all the swatch knitting. I usually knit up the whole sock, but that is going to get getting slightly ridiculous very fast. I have so many socks where I have only knit the first sock as a sample and not the second sock. I’ve currently got Debi knitting one sock for me in one of the other colours I gave a try.
I do have a knitting machine, but it is generally better with thicker yarns. I might try it on its smallest setting to see how it knits up, but I think I am going to have to knit them all by hand. The knitting machine is named Rosita and she is very temperamental. I would go so far as to suggest bipolar; one second she is happy as a clam, the next, she’s pissed. There were a lot of yarn snarls and dropped stitches. Once I passed the handle over the hooks and all the stitches came off. I looked at it like…. “I think I found the emergency release.” Unfortunately, I wasn’t ready to bind off so I had to meticulously put all those stitches back on.
Since I’ve got the knitting machine I’ve been able to experiment with gradients as well. I think I am getting the hang of them. I may or may not be having a lot of fun trying them out. Be prepared to see a lot of them! I did a gradient in an aran weight so I am excited to see if that works out in a really slouchy hat. I’ll have to take the time to knit it up and see how I did. I think it is going to work out really well.
I’ve also been cleaning out my craft room for the first time in three years. I used to keep all the sock yarn in this room, which is not a large room, so there was never any room to do anything. Now we keep the stock in another part of the house. However, there was an accumulation of random stuff in that room to the point where you weren’t able to walk through the room. I took a day over the weekend and started going through everything. I set up a table with my mom’s sewing machine on top. I sorted through the huge amount of things that were just plain garbage! There were extra wedding invitations, programs, etc from my showers, the wedding, and a large amount of random things that should just be thrown out.
Luckily I took before pictures, because this is the type of job that you need something to show how well you’ve done afterwards. It was a huge undertaking and I am very proud of it! I am trying to figure out how I would like everything set up. I think It’s looking good, but I might keep moving things around. I put up a peg board to put my leftover bits of yarn on. Hopefully this will serve as inspiration for my sock yarn blanket. I feel like I could use about three more of myself to go over everything in that room again. There are still some drawers that have way too many things in there. I’ll have to take everything out, throw away what needs to be thrown away, and see what is left.
I’ve still been working on it in little bits and pieces. The key is to quit while you’re ahead, when I start to feel like I am done with all this organizing or if it starts to feel hopeless, I stop; walk away. There are lot of things I could do with this room and I don’t want to rush it.
Anyway, I think I have talked your ear off for now. I’ll post again soon. I am looking at my sample collection for the fall and thinking I need to beef it up a little bit. I’m looking at starting those projects relatively soon so watch my Ravelry page for updates!