Mabel’s Adventures: trying something new.

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Having had some success with Mable at generic 2 ply in various yarn bases I was keen to try something new.

At Yarndale I purchased this fabulous batt of wonderfully coloured yarn from Spin City UK. It was called E numbers and I can’t remember the exact make up but I think it had some sort of fake cashmere, or angora or something in it and it totally lives up to the name with all the insanely bright colours!
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It was a bit of an impulse purchase as I wasn’t really sure what I would do with it but it was just too fabulous to pass up.  Anyway – i thought I would try my hand at an ‘Art Yarn’. Now I’m not 100% sure what these are but I think basically when you don’t try and make something all nice and smooth and even (or for those peopel who even spinning comes naturally – you go out of your way to make it uneven!). So with literally no idea what I was doing I started spinning this fabulous batt up. Less than half an hour later I had this wonderful bobbin of brightness…..
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I couldn’t believe how quickly I got through the 100g of fibre. It’s massively overspun in places but I think that’s probably part of the charm – I did have a little moment with the wheel at some point as the yarn almost didn’t fit through the orifice!

I left it a couple of days on the bobbin and then skeined it up to give it a bath. I’m so pleased with the result. I’ve already wound it into a ball ready to cast on – i’m thinking a bobble had – or cowl of some kind!
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My second try something new was doing some 3ply. I got this gorgeous fibre from The Yarn Yard as part of Septembers CJP.
imageMy favourite colour is orange and I wanted the yarn from this fibre to be special. So rather than splitting into 2 I split into 3 and spun up 3 of the neatest bobbins I’ve done so far.
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I left them settle a whole 24 hours (this was a real test of my patience) then plyed them together.
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I am so amazingly pleased with how this skein turned out. it’s 272 yards to 120g – so I think about DK weight and it’s so soft and squooshy! It’s going to be a pair of socks I think. Or perhaps some fingerless mitts…..
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The orange is so fabulously vibrant – the photos really don’t do Natalie’s Dyeing justice.

I’ve already started my next spinning project. This is a gorgeous South American fibre from Fondant Fibre in the colourway Jersey Girl (She currently has a fab sale on and this fibre is in the sale!!!)

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It’s spinning up a treat! I’m totally in love – it’s not how I thought it would come out but it reminds me of ice-cream sprinkles!
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Fondant Fibre was a new discovery for me and I was totally impressed. I ordered a few braids and not only did they arrive in a matter of days they came with this cute little thank-you gift of a fibre sample, tea and cute stitch marker! Felt very special!

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thanks for visiting

love Shoe

xxxxx

Further Adventures with Mabel

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I have most definitely caught the spinning bug! Having had a play with a smallish batt I wanted to try spinning a whole 100g.

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I purchased this skein from hilltop cloud. Its a gorgeous BFL/Merino/camel mix with sparkles which I think you can just make out in the pics.

I was getting on fine with my wheel then this happened:

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Urgh! All loose And twisty on the bobbin! This hadn’t happened the first time so I quickly turned to the Ravelry boards for help! I gave the wheel a good oil and replaced the break band. This seemed to help, the other tip I was given was to move the yarn frequently between hooks so it doesn’t build up too much in any one place! This I think had been my main downfall.

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Turned out allright! Not the most even of yarns but great fun to spin! Really fluffy and soft!

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Next on the cards was some Romney from Porpoise Fur.

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This went much better, although I had the same problem but with plying this time-I couldn’t fit the whole 4oz onto the bobbin so I have a 90g skein and a 20g skein!

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Really pleased with how this turned out.

Ive already started my next spinning project and its coming along lovely. As you can imagine I’m incredibly happy about this yarn!

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This fibre is the September club from the Yarn Yard and (as I expect you know) orange is my favourite colour so it makes me smile! I think it wants to be a hat, or some mittens! Im going to 3ply it to see how that works…..

My fibre stash appears to be growing rapidly! So excited to get spinning with some of these! I kind of like that its a one project kind of hobby! Spurs me on to finish! Or to buy more bobbins! Haha! Xx

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Thanks for visiting

Shoe xxxx

Yet another new hobby: Dyeing!

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For a while I’ve wanted to have a go at dyeing yarn. Ive been looking around for a good course but they were all too far away. when I saw that Yarndale were offering an ‘adventures with dyeing’ course I signed up straight away.

Anyway, in typical Shoe fashion I couldn’t wait so I did some research online and came across Tall Yarns who offered easy all in one dye sets and undyed yarn. I went for ‘collection 2′ which had six small pots of dye and orders that along with a skein of undyed sock yarn!

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It came with a super cute project bag. In which it sat for about a month!

Then last week we had a few sunny days and I thought I’d give it a go. Armed with an array of Wilkos tupperwear I read through the fab instructions and set to work!

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This was the result:

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To say i was pleased was an understatement! I was extatic, now to be honest its more the work of the dye than the dyer but I immediately set up to dye another skein!

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Initially I wasn’t as pleased with the second skein as the colours didn’t seem as vivid. The second skein is wool/nylon, the first merino/nylon which I think is where the difference is.

However, once they were dry and skeined up I loved them both even more!

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I will definitely be dyeing more yarn in the future! In fact I went overboard at Yarndale with undyed yarn and have already puchased some more dyes!

The Yarndale workshop, unfortunately, did not live up to expectations. Perhaps because I was so pleased with my home dyed skeins; however, it was good to play with different colours-and use food colouring dyes which are slightly cheaper I think!

Expect to see more blog posts about dyeing in the near future!

Thanks for visiting me

Shoe
Xxxx

Yarndale 2014!

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You may remember my trip to Yarndale last year. It was hectic and i came away with 2 skeins of yarn and a pack of mini skeins! Hardly a bumper haul considering what was on offer!

I nearly didn’t go this year but Id heard the organisers had taken on all the issues of last year and done their best to sort them out!

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So off I went yesterday morning in the car armed with my highlighted yarndale plan and a short and concise shopping list. No problems with the journey, no problems with parking and the marshalls were doing a fabulous job af making sure it stayed that way.

The good thing about last year mayhem was that I spent very little. This year I did not get away so lightly.

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Whoops! My first yarn show as a spinner, knitter and more recently dabbling with being a dyer meant there were thrice as many things to purchase!

It would take me all day to list out all the fabulous sellers (if you’d like to know where something is from please comment will gladly tell you) so here’s some piccys instead!

skeins of yarn for knitting – just four and for once carefully thought out (aside from the fluro yellow one-just needed that in my life!)

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Plenty of fluff for spinning:

IMG_4062.JPG how fab is that giant ball of fluro fluff!

And some yarn for dyeing:

IMG_4061.JPG can you see the sparkles? Im also well chuffed with the giant skein of sportweight!

I also purchased a niddy noddy, a yarn bowl, some buttons and some acid dyes!

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Weary from my mega shop I had a quick coo at the alpacas and then was homeward bound! I would probably have stayed longer and mooched about Skipton but I was feeling decidedly under the weather

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I was very impressed at how the show was run this year, well done! Off to categorise my new stash and upload to ravelry!

Thanks for visiting!

Love
Shoe
Xxx

Introducing Mable!

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This is Mable, my spinning wheel, I love her….a lot!

Now I know what youre thinking, Shoe said she ‘didn’t need another hobby’ , surely she has more will power than that?

Nope, I dont! Ive been stalking ebay, gumtree and the ISO on UK spinners for the last month and eventually found what Appeared to be a good deal!The seller had been handed down the wheel but didn’t have anyone I’m his family to pass it onto so had put it up for sale on ebay.

I travelled to Ripon yesterday to pick her up!

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I couldn’t wait to get her going, so I replaced the drive band and started her up! She spins really well and I managed two small bobbins yesterday evening!

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This morning I plyed the two small bobbins! Im so chuffed with it!

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The wheel came with two lazy kates, 4 bobbins and a whole box of stuff! Including the original instruction booklet and twelve bottom whorl drop spindles, not 100% sure what i will do with them but gonna try and find them a good home…..

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Off to yarndale in a couple of weeks so Fibre is gonna be top of my list!!

Lots of love

Shoe
Xxxx

FO: Shoe’s Spectral Lines Sportweight Socks

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Wowzers, I’m on fire. Pair number 14 off the needles!

This is another String Theory Colorwork yarn. This time a sportweight yarn in colours which are even better than in the photo!

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This was my first attempt at a rib sock and I really like the way it has turned out. Its a 3:1 rib with a 2:2 cuff. They have fast become my favourite ‘house’ socks – they’re super cosy! Did the best I’ve ever managed with yarn with about 3g left!

I love how quick sportweight socks knit up!

Thanks for reading

Shoe xxx