Knitting Like A Sailor

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Where to go, and how to get there

I've had a few people ask where I got some of the things I bought and what I have planned for them, so here's the list and the links.
  • Grey Romney/Border Leicester fleece. I bought it off of Ebay, but the lady who grew it is Dee Heinrich at Peeper Hollow Farm. She is a new to me shepherdess, but it appears as though her fleeces did well at some shows this past summer. My intentions are to wash it, and then sample with it, spinning from the flicked lock vs combing it. Elaine Benfatto has a great essay on plies and plying twist in her blog archives that caught my attention last year. Since reading it I've been looking for a lustrous grey longwool fleece large enough to spin a many plied worsted spun dk-ish weight yarn to make an aran or gansey from. I have a gorgeous romney/montadale cross, unfortunately the ewe threw her coat and got into a mess, so her fleece weighed out at 4 pounds. Not enough for experimenting and making mistakes in my opinion. I plan on spinning as much as possible into the same yarn, so I'll probably have matching something or others for someone around here. Of course some of the fleece will find it's way into the dye pot, and on the carder, and in a blend, that's what I usually do with the oddments (the odd length, different crimp, off handle bits that just about every fleece has, and perhaps some wool that has to be skirted out, but is too good to throw away) It's been a long time since I've dug into a raw fleece, I'm really looking forward to it.
  • The carders, swift, the russian lace book and the Stowe book are from the Village Spinning and Weaving shop. I had not ordered from them before, and if everything goes as well as it looks (I already have the tracking number and am bugging the heck out of UPS tracking the progress, it's slated for an Oct 7th delivery date) I'm seriously considering ordering some of the rovings they have there. Nothing fancy as far as colors go, but I like to do my own prettifying so plain, good rovings are a staple to me. They have Targhee. I like Targhee. Enough that I debated even mentioning it.
  • The Walker books are from knitpicks. Do you really need a link? I think we can all find them ourselves, thank you. I bought enough of the white wool of the andes for a sweater, enough of the white fingering weight merino for a sweater, and I really for the life of me can't remember how much of the white lace weight merino I bought. Not enough for a sweater, I've retained enough sanity to refrain from that.
  • I bought the mosaic sock kit, the twined sock pattern, the Hazel Carter Rosy Fingered Dawn kit and the Spider Queen pattern from Blackberry Ridge woolen mill. If you can quickly scroll past the scrappy jacket ghastlies at the top of the page, the links to the things I like are at the bottom. I'm not a fan of mixed media such as quilting and knitting, although I have used an old, ugly, felted afghan as batting. I intend to make the Spider Queen first. I have the pattern in the copy of Ms. Carters' shetland pattern book, unfortunately that shawl has a slightly different centerpiece and I don't like it. At all. But this one I like, and if it turns out the charts are the same and the sample shawl was wonky, I still won't regret buying the pattern. Must support the Shetland Lace designers. Rosy Fingered Dawn may become Mauvy Fingered Dawn, as I've seen pictures of a few completed shawls. Some were gaudy, some were fine, I'm hoping it was the photography skills of the posters. I'll know when I get the yarn in my hot little hands.
  • The yarn. Wow. It's from Handpaintedyarns. It appears to be a singles yarn, 850 yards per 100 grams, $5.95 per skein. I bought two each in Buscando Azul LC, Damask Rose LC, Emerald LC, and Indigo LC. I think the LC stands for the cooperative it came from, or the dyer. Whatever, LC makes some gorgeous colors. I almost bought geranio, and I'm seriously, seriously considering buying olive dusty, sauterne, and one of the violets, even though my order has already shipped.
  • Last, but the polar opposite of least, is the patterns and book I purchased from here. I had thought about purchasing the book in the US, but I really wanted some of the pattern packs she lists in her projects section. Particularly Unst, and the Ring shawl, her newest limited edition. I have not seen her pattern packs being sold anywhere else, and since I had to get them from her site, why not get the book too? She has some special deals that as far as I can tell are permanent. If you buy the book from her, you receive either a pattern you choose from a selection she lists, or two inox needles of your choice that they carry. For any three pattern packs that you buy, you have your choice of a free pattern, same choices as the one for the book. They don't defray the expense once one considers international shipping charges, but they're nice to include them. I did choose the surface mail option, since the other options put the total dangerously close to too much. When I got up the next day, there was an email from them letting me know that they'd already shipped my package, so I'm looking forward to it's arrival, in two and a half months.

As far as I'm aware, that's the sum total of my orders. I'm not positive that I didn't forget anything. Knitpicks and Blackberry Ridge do not include a copy of the invoice when they email the receipt of order confirmation. All my ordering was done in the wee small hours, and I know particularly at Blackberry Ridge I had several things that I put in and took out of the cart, so something may have been missed. I think I ordered another Hazel Carter pattern from them, but I can't remember. Maybe my next order should include some of those whatchamacallit pills that make you not forget stuff.

As an interesting aside (well, I find it interesting, and it IS my blog) I noticed a few things about myself while shopping. I must have a reason to buy something. Duh. No, seriously. I have to have a logical, clear need or reason for buying something before I will allow myself to buy it. I want it, I like it, and it's pretty don't cut it. Once I make the decision to buy something, I look at as many choices as feasible (and online that's quite a few) decide what I require, what I can compromise on, what I like/want/is pretty, do a price check, and often reevaluate myself out of buying anything. The Heirloom Knitting products were difficult for me. I left the shopping cart sitting open for over an hour, hanging at the point where I had everything entered in and all I had to do was hit one button, and it was a done deal. Why was it so hard? Not only was I not being economical, but I was going about it in the most expensive way possible save for having each item shipped independently, and it was a purchase that I had no guarantee of ever being capable of using. When I finally decided to click, I closed my eyes and squinched up my face, telling myself that the cart has been sitting there so long it's timed out by now, if it's timed out I won't redo it, I'll just let it go. I clicked. It went through.

I know I will enjoy everything I bought. I have need of most of it. Tangled skeins piss me off. I have many fibers that are too fine for my drum carder, and my old hand carders self destructed.

Speaking of self destruction, I'm on my way to bed before it happens to me. Night, happy shopping.