Black Dog

Just a little outpost on the web for me to ramble, post pix, share ideas, and be a part of the crowd.

Friday, April 04, 2003

Tons o'Fun This Weekend

Not much new of late, other than a nice little box from Lorna's Laces late on Wednesday. Lots of stuff that's been on backorder has started to break loose from a variety of companies. I'm thrilled, as we were getting low on the shelves for some of them. Koigu promises to ship on Monday, so we'll have that on Thursday. More Lorna's leaves Chicago on Monday, so that arrives Wednesday. And Jamieson will be here Tuesday or Wednesday. And of course, almost 200 more skeins of Cascade 220 land on Tuesday. Lest we forget, a big ol' Two Old Bags should be here today or tomorrow. Ah, the joys of having a shop. But then the invoices come, about two days after the shipments. Yuck.

This weekend brings a felted market bag workshop on Saturday and a Sally Melville Sunday the next day. We're going to be running specials on the book now that it's back in print as well as on any yarns purchased Sunday to make projects in the book. Add to that the usual mayhem and knitting and it makes for a great couple of days. And tonight is a second spinning lesson at the hands of Patsy, a good friend, excellent spinner and knitter and weaver, and very patient person. She opened up her home to four of us two weeks ago for lesson one, and tonight is number two. Of course, Matt went bezerk last weekend with a drop spindle and spun an entire batt of roving into some very intriguing designer yarn. But I'll let him tell you about that.

For now, I'm outta here and headed to the sofa for knitting. If the rain holds off, I'll make that knitting on the back deck, with Connor. She lives out there this time of the year. Have a good one!

Thursday, April 03, 2003

Okay, so it's Thursday......I'm Tardy

A busy evening of errands and other things put off this post, but here it is. I'd love feedback and your opinions about the colors and the like. The yarn is Noro Silk Garden, so the hand of the finished shawl is very soft and (dare I say) silky. It drapes nicely and seems like it would be nice and cozy. The yarn in the skein, in color order, is on the left, and the finished project is on the right.

The pattern is a simple little entry from KnittingGeek, aka Erica Raspberry. I used a 6mm (US10) circular needle, and I think you could use a larger one with good results. I would not use anything smaller. Erica even has some guidance for blocking your shawl, once the knitting is complete. Also of interest are her directions for inventing your own baby blanket pattern using your handy-dandy stitch treasury (like a Barbara Walker).

I like it, and it knitted up quickly--just a couple evenings of work and five skeins of Noro. I went with four colors (#2 and #4 are the same colorway). If I had to change one thing, I'd use a more random skein for the very beginning (the second/fourth colorway is much more random, as is the last one). The color puddling in the first skein is exaggerated by the shorter rows in that section and that would be ameliorated when the rows are much longer. Other than that, I'm ecstatic with the finished results! I'll probably make another this weekend, as we have plenty of Silk Garden in stock.

Wednesday, April 02, 2003

Watch This Space

Last night was Knit Night in Columbus (IN) at the East Side Community Center. This rather active, rather adventurous group is the brainchild of Christi H. and just plain fun. We're loud, we're brash at times, but we're always knitting. And yet another person joined us last night to learn how to knit, so that's a great thing. And the two that started knitting a couple months ago are elbow-deep in making felted bags, so you know I love 'em!

The headline...........refers to showing off a project of mine later this evening in this space. Sunday night I grabbed five skeins of yarn (show ya later) and a simple pattern from the 'net (share it later) and started a simple shawl. Made great progress that evening, but the fun part was actually finishing it Monday evening (without working on it at all during the day). Granted, I was up until 3 a.m. (ok, so technically it was Tuesday.....) because I couldn't put it down, especially as I started the last of the five skeins and couldn't wait to see how all of the color played together. In my opinion, it's a fun and beautiful finished garment. You'll be able to voice your opinion shortly, when Matt gets the pictures up on the server. It's great to have an in-house techie (but I think on days like this he doesn't think so..........). More later, I promise.

Monday, March 31, 2003

Just in the Nick of Time

Another fun but somewhat crazed evening, with me finally getting a haircut, us doing some grocery shopping, and finally coming home to leftovers and the mammoth Cascade 220 order with a Brown Sheep Lamb's Pride bulky chaser (the backorders are almost all cleared, but sone from OCTOBER remains in backorder status---amazing).

So here's the goods, as promised...
9451 Yarn 9451 Felt
Well, TheresaW, was it worth the wait?

We like it, and as I mentioned earlier, it is just smashing in the sunshine and perfect for a spring project. Can't wait to see what the group thinks tomorrow night, as it's Knit Night in Columbus (IN) and we bring our traveling show over there for the evening. Christi H started a wonderful group of fun knitters and we help to provide emotional support, light instruction, and just plain fun and games twice a month (first and third Tuesdays, East Side Community Center). This growing group has even inspired another local bunch to start their own night, on second Tuesdays. We're planning on attending their first meeting next week, just to see what's going on in Brown County, Indiana (the other Nashville). See you there!

Issues, we have issues........

Connectivity problems with the ISP at home have caused delays in getting pictures up to the server for blog updates. For those of you wondering where my sample of TheresaW's requested Cascade 220 9451 is, you'll see it as soon as they fix a severed underground cable somewhere in our neighborhood. Ah, the joys of urban sprawl. Suffice to say that the felted fabric is INCREDIBLE and it caused two people to buy that very yarn just yesterday. You'll see it soon, I promise.

Sunday, March 30, 2003

Progress Check

Another weekend and another wonderful interaction with great folks. It's just after noon on Sunday and we're expecting some friends/knitters shortly, so I'm sneaking in a little blog time to update a couple of you out there who I know are waiting patiently.

Saturday brought a fun, sorta quiet, rather productive day to us. It started shortly after noon, when our friend Karen dropped by. She had called earlier with a knitting-related emotional issue, as she put it. First some background--Karen learned to knit about two years ago (February 2001). She made several great projects right out of the gate and promptly won several blue ribbons and a best in show in the Johnson County (Indiana) Fair that fall. She was elated and took off with her knitting (and second new skill, spinning) like a house-a-fire, embraced challenging projects (fair isle, entrelac, steeking), spun enough wool to make her husband a sweater, and even purchased angora rabbits (just a side note--we carry her angora fiber and some other goodies). After a disappointing 2002 fair, she's back with a vengance, and she's making a knitted dress for her older (of two) daughter, with an eye towards securing another best in show at this fall's fair. She and Matt were conspiring and selecting yarns yesterday for said dress, and it's going to be a knock-out. Beware, Karen's a comin'!

Then, much to our delight, Lana and her husband Josh dropped by after choir practice. Such a treat, as Lana's always knitting something wonderful and it's fun to stitch-and-bitch with her and Josh (he's working on something fun in the crochet domain). And shortly after that, Susan came by to show off her recently-finished Wonderful Wallaby made with Cascade Sierra (cotton/wool blend--in stock and coming to the site soon) in a wonderful cantalope shade. Talk about stunning, and she went for the optional polo-style collar instead of the hood. SHARP! Oh, and she brought some farm-fresh eggs and a couple finished goods to be felted--a pair of FUN fuzzy feet and a denim blue felted hat. Eventually it was just she and Matt and I, and we talked deep into the evening about spinning and knitting and stuff all over the map. Matt was involved in something (he'll reveal it on his blog later today or tomorrow) and the three of us sat around the table and talked about when roosters attack (Susan ate some tasty chicken this week), making a sweater out of odds and ends from Sally Melville Styles, and just had a great time overall. We have some of the most wonderful friends/customers and are truly lucky.

Today brings more fun folks and more fun projects (I'll add pictures from both days either tomorrow or later today--promise). Helen's coming by shortly, Christi H said she's coming, and Christy E is bringing a friend of hers to felt fuzzy feet (they both have fun ones made with Pastaza they created a couple weeks ago at our Revenge of Fuzzy Feet workshop; this was the second one we did, thus it had to have a sequel-esque name, no?). I'm sure others will be stopping by as well, so it will be a fun FUN day again. And I'm felting the bag I finished yesterday, which is a request bag from TheresaW over at Keyboard-Biologist. Fun reading at her site today about singles and science. Theresa wanted to see what Cascade 220 in 9451 looked like felted up, so I'll reveal that here tomorrow, after it dries. The yarn is a beautiful teal heather with deeper blue and some yellow in the heathering, so I look forward to seeing it come out of the ol' Amana washer in an hour or so. And Julie says this color is SO VERY Theresa, and that's a good thing.

As I said earlier, we're fortunate beyond belief--seriously! To be able to do what we love and to share it with such great people continues to amaze me. And I don't mean just local folks--you're reading this (BIG THANKS) and we get to help and enable folks near and far through ThreadBear. I feel like Sally Field at times......(bonus points if you get that weird reference.........).

Great Sunday to you--be well!