Friday, 1 February 2013

A find!

Earlier this week I had a trip to Ikea, we live far enough away that it's a full on day out, usually we're out for 12 hours, so it's pretty exhausting.
While we were looking at fabrics I spotted a cushion, I'd ben looking at cushions all day, but I have a plan that involves weaving some of my own, so hadn't quite seen anything that was "just right".
This one however was perfect!

My very own sheepy cushion, and it was the very last one!

It's not made of wool, but when we got it home and gave it a quick iron it was discovered that it was made of Ramie. Ramie is one of my favourite things for adding to blends at the moment. It's made in the same way as linen, but from nettle stems. It gives a really similar effect to linen, the same drape, with shine, and feel. Works great in wool blends as well. 

As for the sheep they're mostly a mystery. I can definitely spot a Merino, and a Texel,

A Badger Faced

 and a Swaledale

The rest though, are a bit more of a challenge!

Any suggestions, leave them in the comments!

Wednesday, 30 January 2013

Estuary part 2

Back in December I shared the transformation from batts to yarn in this post. 
The batts in question were a muted brown with flecks of blue, inspired by the colours of the Mawddach estuary. When you spun them, the blue became a little more obvious, creating a subtle, shimmery yarn.

I've since turned the skein of yarn in to a sample shawl for using on the stall at shows, it's also part of my talk that I dod for guilds and spinning groups about combining colours. 

From a distance the subtleness of the blend is apparent

Get a bit closer, and the flecks you saw in the yarn become more obvious. The white bits are partly some of the seacell, partly snow, I photographed this last week trying to do it today would lead to me chasing the shawl half way to England, it's a bit windy out there!

The pattern is Pipers Journey by Paula Emmons-Fuessle,  I think it's great for handspun, I love how garter stitch looks using handspun yarn. This took a smidge over 100g, but I know other people have done it using 100g of fibre, you could always use handspun for the garter stitch, and then do the border in a complementary colour. I love this shape of shawl as well, I end to wear shawls backwards, with the  point at the front, and then the 2 ends wrapped round my neck, and that works best if you have a crescent shape rather than a pure triangle.