Last day to sign up for HHHH!

June 30, 2008 @ 12:12 pm
posted by kris
Filed under: HHHH

Just a reminder

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that today is the last day to sign up for the Hush-Hush Handspun Hootenanny! If you are a spinner and want to participate in a swap, read the instructions here and sign up!

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My first fractal spin

June 25, 2008 @ 11:54 pm
posted by kris
Filed under: spinning


Twisted Fiber Art Cloudy in Ravelry

I am taking my sweet ass time with this one, mostly because I am trying to find a healthy balance again. I went off the deep end in the fiber world and ignored a bunch of house duties that really I should have taken care of. My work area is embarrassing and I’m realizing that I’m turning into a hermit with a fiber problem. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. ;)

So anyhoo, enough about that! I was wishy-washy after I started this – I’m making this super thin, and then thought maybe I should do a navajo ply, but then that would defeat the whole point of doing a fractal spin. So I’m just sticking with it. The fiber always seems to fluff up more than I expect, so let’s hope that happens with this one. It would be just my luck that it stays super thin. Ah well, laceweight is cool.

This is the first time I’m doing a merino/bamboo blend and spinning from a big chunk of roving. I usually split the roving down into manageable widths so I don’t go back and forth. The back and forth kinda stresses me out a little. Does anyone have tips on how to do this better?

Fiber: Twisted Fiber Art Cloudy (60% merino/40% bamboo) in Ravelry colorway – it’s perfectly matched!

Comments (9)

HHHH Questionnaire

@ 12:02 pm
posted by kris
Filed under: HHHH

1. How long have you been spinning? What skill level do you consider yourself?
About 3 months (wheel only). I borrowed the Wollmeise’s Louet S15 and the wheel has never stopped turning! I would say that I’m an beginning intermediate. I’ve only done 2-plys and some 3-plys.

2. What kinds of yarn do you create (singles/2-ply/3-ply/art yarn)?
I’ve mostly done 2-plys, with a little bit of navajo 3plys.

3. What do you spin with (spindle/wheel/both)?
Wheel only. I don’t understand people who use spindles! ;)

4. What are your favorite fibers to spin with? Anything you don’t like?
I lurve superwash merino. That’s my old standby. I felted one of my kids’ non-superwash socks and was so mad that I promised myself to only spin superwash (at least for my family). I also love merino/tencel and merino/silk blends. They spin up like buttah.

I haven’t had the lovefest for BFL, I think I prefer more slippery yarns. I keep buying it though, in the hopes that it will get better.

5. Who are your favorite crack dealers fiber sources (etsy or otherwise)?
Ah geez. Do you have an hour? I love Crown Mountain Farms, Pigeonroof Studios and Twisted Fiber Art. Those are the main ones that I covet. I also stalk Funky Carolina, FatCatKnits, Bonkers,

And these I just stalk – I haven’t actually spun any fiber from them yet: All Spun Up, Creatively Dyed, Freckle Face Fibers, threebyhand, Spincerely Yours, Hello Yarn, Spunky Eclectic, Chameleon Colorworks, Sakina Needles and YummyYarn.

I don’t belong to any fiber clubs YET, but my #1 choice would be Hello Yarn’s. Although the chances of me getting in are pretty slim as she only has a few spots every time. :(

6. What kind of fiber do you want to try?
I haven’t yet spun pure silk or a soy silk blend. I do have a pure bamboo and that was hard as hell to get consistent, but that was awhile ago now.

7. Is there any techniques you would like to learn?
I would like to try spinning from a silk hankie. It looks complicated (yet fun!)! I also want the patience to spin a traditional 3-ply. But I just can’t get myself to give up the yardage.

8. Do you dye fiber? If not, would you like to learn?
I would love to learn! I actually have lots of kool aid and easter egg dyes, but just haven’t had the time to sit down and do it.

9. Do you have fiber prep tools (and like to use them) or would you prefer ready to spin fiber?
Ready to spin for me, please!

10. What do you do with your handspun? What projects have you completed?
I have knit socks and more socks. Did I mention socks? I would like to one day knit sweaters for my boys. But ugh, the thought of spinning a pound of something makes me put that off for later.

11. Are you in need of any spinning gadgets (WPI Gauge, threading hook, etc)?
In the latest spinoff, they talked about one of those scales that measured yards per pound. I forget what it’s called and have no idea how much they cost. But that looked like something useful (esp. for bigger projects).

12. What colors “fall into your shopping basket”? Any colors you just can’t stand?
You know, there is probably no color that I wouldn’t put in my shopping cart! But since I usually knit for boys, I lean towards blues, greens, browns, earthy colors and any Pigeonroof Studios.

I generally don’t like the extremes – pastels or neon colors. But that doesn’t necessarily mean it won’t end up in my basket. ;)

13. What is on your wheel/spindle right now?
I am doing a fractal spin (my first) with Twisted Fiber Art Cloudy (merino/bamboo blend) in the colorway Ravelry. I’m about 60% done.

14. What other crafts/hobbies do you have?
I knit, of course, some sewing, and I also do some photography.

15. Other than crafts, what are you passionate about?
Spending time with the family, trying out new restaurants, going to the movies.

16. Do you have an online wishlist?
I have a Kaboodle list. Oooh, they have a “slideshow” link:


17. Is there anything that you collect?
Fiber. It used to be yarn. ;)

18. Any books, yarns, needles or patterns out there you are dying to get your hands on? What magazine subscriptions do you have?
I’m pretty content now. Some generous person gave me some Hello Yarn fiber. ;) I have IK and Spin Off subscriptions.

19. When is your birthday?
In April

20. What book or movie character do you most resemble in personality?
Hmmm…the first person who came to mind is “Elaine” from Seinfeld. I don’t know why? I think because she hangs out with guys and is slightly childish?

21. What is the climate like where you live around this time (need to know for careful shipments of anything meltable)?

It’s hot nowadays, but it changes between that and semi cold (like highs of high 80’s and lows of like 40’s).

22. Tell us one weird fact about yourself!

Hmmm…I have a coin sorter and use it religiously. I love putting it in rolls and then taking it to the bank to deposit into my account. I am weird like that.

Favorites
favorite painting/picture(link): here

Candy: Green & Blacks Almond, definitely

Food: Ohhh, too many! I am from Hawaii and I’m all about the Hawaii food.

Drink: Coke and Coke Zero (only because reg. coke as too many calories)

Movie(s): I love movies. Romantic Comedies are my fave. Notting Hill, Sleepless in Seattle, High Fidelity, 40 year old virgin, Ever After, anything with Adam Sandler, Never Been Kissed, etc.
others I like are Ocean’s 11 series, Bourne Identity series, Finding Forrester (hmmm..a matt damon connection here), Napoleon Dynamite (YESSSSS!), Bend it Like Beckham, any sports or inspriational movie. I hate watching sports, but I love sports movies, weird.
I also like foreign films, but sadly since I live in a non-English speaking country, I haven’t been able to see much.

TV Show(s): I watch a lot since I do it while I spin/knit. Grey’s Anatomy, The Office, Lost, Bones, House, 24, Prison Break, Ugly Betty, Monk, Psych, Heroes, Medium, 30 Rock, Everybody Hates Chris

Book(s): Harry Potter and mostly knitting and spinning related books, don’t have time to read anymore!

Guilty Pleasure(s): Knitting or spinning while eating chocolate!

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What’s with her hand?

June 24, 2008 @ 12:57 pm
posted by kris
Filed under: misc

This made me LOL. Originally found on PhotoshopDisasters.

EDIT: damn, Sears fixed the picture! This is what it looked like originally.

Comments (3)

Sorry for my absense…

June 21, 2008 @ 3:21 am
posted by kris
Filed under: misc,socks


Hiking in Zermatt – isn’t the view amazing???

Finished handspun socks!

We planned this trip awhile ago, and with everything going on I kinda forgot about it, but then suddenly it was here. My family and I (and my parents) went to Zermatt, Switzerland for a week. It was freakishly expensive, but after the initial shock, we learned to live with it and thank goodness our apartment had a kitchen so we could cook all our meals.

We had more good weather days than bad and oh, when the sun shines, it is truly one of the most beautiful places to be. We had an awesome view from our apartment, but to get out there with the boys was really fun. They are hardcore hikers/climbers! They always took the hardest paths and always wanted to go up up up to the top! One of the most memorable days we took the train/ski lift up and walked down. It was about 2 miles (maybe more?) and we were constantly amazed at how well the boys did, considering they haven’t really done much hiking. The whole time I kept thinking, THIS is why we moved to Europe. The accessibility to the outdoors is really great here, and I am ALL for taking a lift up to a mountain top and/or enjoying a hot meal and wine in a hut. :)

The trip back we had some back luck – my wonderful husband read the wrong departure time, so we missed our comfy glacier express. We took the regional trains back home and I think we had to transfer 6 or so times. Yeah, that was fun. But I’m home and getting caught up on stuff.

So, now I’m off to bed, thought I would leave you with some pictures! One is of my family on the memorable hike and the other is my husband showing off his new socks which I’ve named “36 pieces of flair”. Hope everyone knows the reference. :)

Comments (15)

Knitting handspun socks in Switzerland

June 14, 2008 @ 1:39 pm
posted by kris

So we’ve had a traumatic past couple of days. Thursday afternoon, we headed out on a train to Chur (me, husband and boys). My parents left early in the morning so they were already there. It’s a long story about a car that has been in the shop for 4 weeks as to why we didn’t leave all together. Anyways, the train ride was actually pleasant, the boys did great.

The boys have been potty trained for about a month now and have been doing so very well. Hardly any accidents and if it did happen, it would happen during their nap. Bathrooms on the train really aren’t great for beginning potty trained boys. One of them did fine, but Elijah got totally freaked out by the weird toilet and how it moved. I think this really scarred him for life and he didn’t want to use a toilet after that – even the ones in the train station and in our hotel. So we put him in diapers again. He always wants to wear underwear but then when he realizes that means going to the toilet, he starts screaming and crying. Ugh. Today Michael bought a kids toilet seat – you know, the kind that fits over the toilet so it’s smaller and he is finally comfortable enough to use it.

We got a rude introduction to Switzerland! When we got to Chur, it was surprising at how expensive everything is. Thank goodness my parents were there to warn us. We knew it would be expensive, but I don’t think we were quite prepared. One swiss franc is about the same as one US dollar. We paid close to $40 for a McDonalds meal for 2 adults and 2 kids. Wow. We also booked a cheap room (at least in Chur – it was $130 a room) and it was in the middle of all these strip clubs and bars. How embarrassing it was to be walking with 2 kids and your parents with pictures of these naked ladies everywhere. I couldn’t wait to get out of there. The next day we took the Glacier Expess train to Zermatt and it was a really great train ride (but OH MY GOD expensive)

Zermatt was so much nicer and everything is clean and there are no cars (except for these little electric cars). Our room is amazing and surprisingly not that expensive. Off of our balcony we have an incredible view of the Matterhorn and the weather is PERFECT! We have a kitchen here so we plan to cook as much as possible to save on the costs.

So anyways, that was my rant about Switzerland. On to knitting! I finished spinning the skein of CMF superwash merino in San Francisco and I was so-so about it. It wasn’t as thin as I would’ve liked it and also I wasn’t sure about the colors, they kind of went everywhere. I decided to knit Michael socks with it anyways (and he saw the colors and thought it was ok), and I LOVE THEM SO MUCH. The transformation that handspun makes from yarn to sock is amazing. Oh, it is so awesome. I wish I could take a picture of it, but sadly, internet connection here costs money (of course) and the computer that works with the internet connection doesn’t have a port that fits the memory card. Argh. I’ll take pictures and post them later. I am making a plain stockinette foot with a 2×2 rib leg and an afterthought heel. I never made those heels before so I thought I should try it.

Other than that, I am missing my spinning (no wheel for 1 whole week!) but have my handspun socks and Fiddleheads to keep me company among the mountains!

Oh yeah, today is WWKIP day, I’m going to try and knit outside awhile. But it’s kinda sad that I’ll be by myself. There is a yarn shop here, I’ll have to find it! :)

Comments (8)

Look ma – I’m Knitting!

June 3, 2008 @ 11:36 am
posted by kris


Wollmeise Fiddleheads

Wollmeise Fiddleheads

Twisted Fiber art in Warlock

FatCatKnits merino/tencel in Patina

Look – I’m knitting!!! My left thumb is getting some kind of spinning injury (is that possible?) so I’m giving it a rest and I haven’t spun in 2 days. So what do I do? I buy a pattern and take stock of my wollmeise!

Man, do I suck at color work. I cannot do fair-isle for the life of me. Oh it looks good from afar, but it’s puckery, loosey goosey, and hole-y. :( I can’t knit English style so I basically pick up and drop the yarn. Very time consuming. One of these days I will have to learn to throw. Will someone give me some tips (ms. onandofftheneedles, I’m talking to you!)? I looked at the video on Knitting Help and she makes it look easy but it’s so freakishly hard!

The spice market (middle strip) doesn’t have a whole lot of contrast, and I thought about ripping it out, but ugh, to go all the way back there would bring me to tears. So can you just lie and say that it looks super awesome??? ;)

And also wanted to post pics of my latest skeins of spinning. I love them both!

Comments (19)

And the winner is …

June 1, 2008 @ 10:06 pm
posted by kris
Filed under: contest

… (drumroll please) …

Terhi!

I will contact you for your address to send you the yarn. Thanks all for entering, I wish I could’ve given all of you some handspun!

Comments (3)

Hush-Hush Handspun Hootenanny (HHHH) swap!

@ 8:12 pm
posted by kris
Filed under: HHHH

Since I am about all things spinning and have waaay too much handspun and fiber, I thought I would start a swap with other spinning/fiber heads! Sign up here and spread the word to all spinners!!

PS. I still need to do the random generator for the contest, will be back shortly.

Comments (3)

What does bockstark mean (pronounced bok-shtark)? My crazy German friend, Matthias, made that word up to mean "really cool" and says that it is catching on in Garmisch. So I am helping him popularize the word! I thought if I ever opened a yarn store, I would call it "Bockstark Yarns". This blog is all about my projects, yarns and crazy ideas related to knitting and other crafts. Contact me at bockstark.knits(at)gmail(dot)com.