Mid-Ohio Fiber Fair

I had a great time at the Mid-Ohio Fiber Fair today! Bob’s Mom, Margie, and I went for a couple of hours and shopped the booths. I got to see some of my favorite yarn dyers, and pick up a few precious skeins.

I was really excited to meet Catherine from Knitting Notions in person. You may know her from the yarnmama blog. I had a hard time choosing from her displays dripping with glorious tonal yarns, but I managed. I also picked up a cherry wood darning egg!

Next stop was Laura from Laughing Cat Fibers. I got to meet her husband Joe on this visit. Laura will be dyeing the yarn for my Autumn Yarn Mystery Box! I picked up a few skeins and a free pattern!

It’s always a pleasure to banter with Kelley from Dye Mad Yarns. I grabbed a skein of Taurus and another of Litha, for summer seasonal knitting joy. I also selected a Porch Goose magnet set for my refrigerator. I’m really glad I got one, because I’ve been wanting it for a long time. You need one too.

I met a new-to-me Ohio dyer, Lorna from Bewitched Pigments. Their yarn colors are stunning! I didn’t get any yarn from them at the event, but I did sign up for one of the clubs on their website.

I also got to visit with the ladies from the Central Ohio Weaving and Fiber Arts Guild for a moment. I didn’t have time to sit and knit in public, but I’ll be volunteering at a couple of events later this summer.

Sharon, above on the right, suggested I try spinning with BFL as I’m learning. So I brought home a braid of natural BFL, which I may dye before I spin. I will save photos of my acquisitions for another post.

Did you knit in public today?

You and Me Against the Slugs: Wednesday WIPs

One Blueberry Popover Day striped sock

While this sock may look like an FO (finished object) I can assure you it is a WIP (work in progress) as it is awaiting its mate. I have cast on the second sock, but I’m still on the cuff ribbing. If it were Friday, I would have posted it as an FO, because that’s how I roll.

The only other things I’ve been working on are my knitting design and dyeing for my summer yarn mystery box. These are top secret, so I can’t post pics. Today I’ll be typing up the pattern and starting the project bags. Later this afternoon I hope to get back to knitting on my Pumqueen Cardi.

I went out to the garden to check on the new plants, and so far, so good. We have so many slugs, though. Last year, the beer traps worked about 80% of the time. But as I mentioned before, not all slugs are dumb. This morning I was quoting the movie Tremors, “This one ain’t falling for it. This one ain’t dumb.” I think the dumb slugs (or beer loving slugs?) have now been excluded by natural selection. I never put out the Escar-go! because it can harm small animals. I don’t want anything like that in my garden. If I depended on my garden for food, I would take more drastic measures.

Speaking of horror, I’ve started a new-to-me folk horror series by Phil Rickman. I am liking it! I have been struggling with reading lately, so it’s good to find an author and series that I like.

We’ve been to Cleveland and back, and had a really nice stay for Peyton’s graduation weekend. While there, I stopped by Longtail Knits and picked up this beautiful shawl pin that is perfect for my Ocean Moon shawl! We also ate delicious gluten-free crepes, and I had a gluten free scone at a coffee shop. Here’s an adorable pic of Bob and his Mom!

Wednesday WIPs: a Mid-Week YOP Update

My weekends have been fairly busy, and I haven’t been able to post a Year of Projects update in a bit. So here’s a combo post!

Knitting

I am working on sport weight socks for Bob, a Halloween cardigan, and my Arrowhead cardigan. The yarn shown in the featured image is from my stash and will be used in a Summer Solstice Ambah knitalong. I am also working on my knitting pattern design for the Volunteer Sunflowers yarn mystery box.

The Halloween cardigan is from the Fall Favorites Collection, Pumqueen version. The yarn is Cascade BFL, which I am really enjoying working with. I’m modifying the pattern to be a cardigan with a steek.

Sewing

I am focusing on project bags right now. I hope to have a finish to show by Friday. But I did sew matching KISS pajama shorts for Bob and me.

Dyeing

I continue to experiment. I am mostly focusing on the Volunteer Sunflowers yarn mystery box yarn. Only one week left to order. Please share with people you think would be interested!

Spinning

I haven’t been doing this. I hope to start back up next month.

In other news:

We have two baby groundhogs in the garden right now. They are so cute.

We enjoyed our trip to ParaPsyCon III at the Ohio State Reformatory. Very creepy and lots of fun!

Lake Michigan Vacation

Bob and I just got back from a week at a cottage on Lake Michigan! We had a very relaxing and fun week, with a private beach in a great location.

We swam in Lake Michigan (the water was cold!) walked along the beaches, visited Sarett Nature Center, and hiked at Grand Mere State Park.

I finished knitting my Back Porch Shawl, bought a few skeins of yarn at The Sandpiper Bridgman, knit on the beach, and knit at Flick or Treat, where we watched The Old Dark House.

We ate gluten free pizza at Silver Beach Pizza, made a special trip to Sweet Bees Gluten Free Bakery in Paw Paw, bowled a few games at Peat’s Cider Social, and I enjoyed a wine tasting at Dablon Winery and Vineyards.

My favorite days were definitely the ones spent in PJs at the cottage. I read a book! (It’s been a while.) It was a fun read that I blew through in two days. Bob and I celebrated our ninth wedding anniversary. We enjoyed eating at Buck Burger and The Mason Jar, and shopping in Downtown St. Joe’s.

It was a beautiful getaway, not too far away, and a wonderful anniversary!

Sign Me Up Saturday!

I signed up for my first Mystery Knit Along (MKAL)! Raven Knits is hosting The Lonely Heart is a Hunter MKAL, and leads with the story of The Selkie. I fell for it hook, line, and sinker. (See what I did there?) I had some squishy Cormo lace in my stash, and dyed it with a mix of periwinkle and silver. I’m really proud of myself for using what I had. I’m also proud because my technical dyeing ability is getting better. I had intended to exhaust the dye bath with more fiber, but the dye was all taken up by the yarn!

I went to World Wide Knit in Public Day at Stitch and Skein in Marion, Ohio. I had a lovely time, and even won a prize! I am knitting a pair of Pride socks for Bob with Dye Mad’s June colorway. I also picked up a couple of skeins of Arrowhead Fibers.

Did you knit in public today?

Mostly Gardening with a Side of Sock Knitting and Podcasting: A YOP Update

I’ve started a new pair of socks for myself. I’m in love with this yarn, which is Honeybees and Violets Please from Bone and Birch. Other than the socks, I’m knitting on my Hansel Hap. I’ve just about talked myself into focusing on the Arrowhead Cardigan instead of casting on a new one, so that I can wear it in the fall.

My garden is exploding. This is the middle, where there’s a lot going on. I accidentally broke off a pea shoot yesterday while weeding, so I ate it. It was delicious!

Full length of the garden. Elderberries in front. I’m not sure how well they’ll do here, but we’ll give it a try. The sunflower transplants are struggling in the back. I found out what happened to all my seedlings back there. Slugs!

For Mother’s Day and my birthday, Bob put together a flower bed for me out of some old wood he found in the barn. We went to the local garden center yesterday, and while I did get the foxgloves and coral bells I wanted to attract hummingbirds, the bed is looking a little sparse. We’ll see how these do. The smaller two are ground cover, so maybe they’ll spread out.

I did get the lilac bush I wanted, and a rose bush too! I didn’t really want yellow roses, but these had the best scent so I couldn’t resist. I also got hollyhocks, coneflowers, and a Joe Pye Weed for under the bird feeders.

I’m trying out wool pellets in the lilac and rose bush plantings to condition the soil, along with some compost. I’d like to add the wool pellets to the vegetable garden, but I’m going to wait until it needs a feed.

These lilacs smell so good! I have a small bouquet by my bedside.

My new podcast episode is up for The Just Craft! I had a wonderful visit at Tarheelbilly Farm, and am releasing the episode in two parts. I am so grateful to Charis and her husband Ben for spending time with me. It was a lovely day.

The sheep in front is Hollis, whose fleece I knit my Paris Toujours Shawl with. I met Hollis! And a few other shweeties as well.

This is Charis’s hand knit sweater she made with her Tunis yarn. She spun the contrasting gray herself. It’s so squishy and lovely!

And I got a sweater quantity of yarn! I had already purchased two skeins of Clancy’s fleece, and the eight new skeins are from Julie. They are close enough that I think I could use them together if needed. Because I don’t want to dye the yarn and loose the sheep smell, I’ve decided to knit it au naturel into a cabled cardigan. And because I was so pleased with the Franca I knit for my Mom, I’ve decided to knit Kiki by Cocoknits.

This has been a Year of Projects Update. You can read my updated list here. You can find out more about the group here.

Virtuwool Events

There are two virtual yarny events this weekend. One is Maryland Sheep and Wool. MDSW was my first big wool show many years back, and I loved every minute of it! I went with my friend Sara and a tiny baby newborn Freya, who was a super easy baby. I bought what seemed like a lot of yarn at the time, but I look back now and think that I was pretty restrained. Their virtual show takes place on Facebook.

I learned about a new yarn festival this week, Botanica, and it’s all about natural fibers and dyes. I’m definitely going to be “attending” this one, which takes place on Instagram live. I may make a few purchases if I fall in love, but I’m thinking it’s probably pretty competitive to get your hands on some of these precious skeins. I figure it’s okay if someone beats me to it.

There has also been a “Virtu-Wool Fiber Festival” on Facebook over the past year. I have attended some of them. That’s where I learned about Ramsay Farms and their delicious Shetland yarn. I don’t know if these will continue.

With COVID cases rising again in some states, I’m hoping the Wisconsin Sheep and Wool Festival doesn’t get canceled. But I bought travel insurance, just in case!

Have you attended any wool or yarn shows virtually, or are you planning to attend any in the near future?

Blogcrastination

It’s Saturday. During the week I am so engrossed with work that when Saturday comes, I don’t know how to transition. I want to make something but I don’t know what I want to make.

These are some cute pants from Seamwork. The only thing I don’t have that I need is a zipper. I’m thinking about braving Joann in a face mask to get what I need. I tried ordering a zipper online three weeks ago and I still don’t have it. I have some navy stretch cotton twill that I think would be fab in this pattern.

This is the tile in the kitchen of the house we made an offer on. I dream about walking barefoot across this tile. I hope we get the house.

We went outside today. We took a hike at Infirmary Mound Park. It’s called that because there is a prehistoric mound there, and also an old home that was called The Infirmary for a time. You can read more about that here. It is a beautiful park with many lovely trails. Wildflowers are blooming right now, and there is a fairy garden trail. But we left it to the families with children.

We did go to Joann and waited in line to get in due to social distancing restrictions. We gave our new kitenge masks from Kenya a whirl.

They fit great! Now it’s time for nachos and Joe Bob. I will keep knitting on my sock. I hope you are having a wonderful Saturday!

Weekend Quizzaroo

(Image credit The Knitting Goddess)

Karen posted a sock quiz! I’m a notorious sock knitting eschewer but quizzes are great for personal development and blog fodder.

1. Do you knit/crochet socks?

I want to knit socks. I have knit socks. But generally, no, I don’t.

2. If yes, how long have you been making them? If no, why not?

It doesn’t sound fun. I’m primarily a sweater and hat knitter.

3. What is your preferred method? Top down, toe up? Which needles? Do you have a preferred heel type?

I prefer toe up so I can make sure the foot fits well. I hate a baggy sock. I prefer fine yarn for socks but they sure do take a long time! I like a well-turned heel. I’ve never tried an afterthought heel. Are their more flaps than that? Double point needles for me.

4. Have you gifted socks? Were they worn, loved and appreciated?

Never! I am considering knitting a pair for Bob, though. It’s a lot of pressure.

5. Could you make nothing but socks for the rest of your life and be happy?

If I can knit one more pair of socks (I’ve made two pair in my life so far) I could be happy the rest of my life never knitting them again. Or, who knows, I might knit another pair and enjoy them so much I will want to knit more! That’s my hope.

6. One of the most addictive things about sock knitting is the amazing selection of fingering weight yarn that is available. What is your favorite yarn for socks? Do you prefer solid or multicolor yarn? Do you have a fiber preference?

For me it will need to be crazy hand painted colors or solid yarn with textured knitting. Wool plus silk (for strength) is my favorite fiber combo. Throw some cashmere in there and I’m hooked.

Well, that was fun and inspiring. Maybe I will cast on a pair of socks today.

February Frogs:

I’m pulling out the linen stitch cowl. It is taking too long and I am afraid I don’t have enough yarn for it. My Hogwarts yarn will make a great pair of clog socks though.

I’m pulling out this Bousta Beanie. It’s not happening.

Do you like my new photo prop? It’s Fair Trade and I picked it up at Pachamama Market when I was in Troy, OH for a work meeting.

I think one should feel good about frogging and this wool felt sunflower does the trick for me.

The new The Just Craft is up!