Thursday, January 18, 2007

2006 Reflections on Fiber - Part One

2006 Fiber Reflections - Part One

05-06 was the first year I taught knitting classes. Through teaching, I learned (and embraced) that I'm a combination knitter. After almost 20 years of knitting, I finally figured this out. While I'm not changing my style for anyone, it does present some challenges when I teach. I've had many wonderful students and I enjoy teaching but it has curtailed my class offerings for the last few months because I try NOT to knit combination style when teaching my classes. So I'm always stuggling to recall what the "regular" way to knit is which makes me always second guess my abilities. I know, I have issues. Nuff said.

Happy knitting student with looooong scarf

I wrote several patterns in 06' which will hopefully springboard me into other areas in 07 (more on this in Part Two). The only ones that have made it on my blog so far are the Felted Fortune Cookie and the Chaqueta patterns. I get more hits on the fortune cookie pattern daily than I do anything else. I'm still stunned. I'm going to freshen up the pattern and add some nuances for this year's Chinese new year and Valentine's Day. Keep your eyes peeled for that very soon.

My spinning wasn't nearly as plentiful as I would have liked but then again I've struggled with knee problems since May so most spinning has been on hold. My major goal for 06 was to spin with a knitting project in mind. I finally achieved this in June by spinning some awesome Blue Moon Fiber merino/tencel that I picked up at MS&W in May. Now I'm still a STR virgin so I can't compare the colors or feel of the fiber to the yarn. But what I can say is that if you're a spinner, this stuff is an absolute dream to work with. It's only available through The Fold and mostly at shows and festivals. At MS&W this year, while y'all are fighting for the STR, I'll be the one in the corner hoarding the beautiful colorways of merino/tencel. Mwah hahahaha!

Anyhoo, this fiber and yarn...

became this

The front of the P90-Modular tank top by Iris Schreier of Artyarns fame. I've actually misplaced it (I'm freaked out that I can't find it) somewhere in the yarn room but I promise to add a completed picture of it to Flickr whenever it comes back from vacation. It was so much fun to watch this project come together. I plan to do more spinning for knitting this year if my knees stay healthy.

I finally made it to a couple of fiber festivals - Sedalia in April and Maryland Sheep and Wool in May. Fried twinkie took an entire year off my life - fer shure! I finally painted my knitting ashram and laid claim to it over the summer of 06. Its the perfect place to escape with my fiber babies even if I don't get in there that often. After cleaning this room out, I committed myself to knitting through as much of my stash as possible. There's way too much yarn and fiber in there and now everyone knows just how much there is - Yikes! I'm proud to say that I've done quite well. Most of my yarn and fiber purchases in 06 were with gift money from my parents and I exercised considerable restraint at MS&W even though I was seriously tempted. That doesn't mean that I didn't find time to visit some LYS while traveling around VA. Ewe Knit Kits, The Yarn Lounge, Knitting Sisters and The Needle Lady (a new find for me in Charlottesville) found particular favor with me this year.

I dipped my toe into the waters of fiber dyeing and am pleased to add "novice colorist" to my repertoire. I participated in my first and probably last craft show. I'm definitely not cut out for production knitting. Did my first test knitting for the Men Who Knit & the Dogs Who Love Them Book. I've done some other test knits but can't blog about the patterns yet until they're released.
I realized too in 06 that I'm not much of a joiner these days so you won't find me too terribly often involved in KALs, challenges or olympiads though I will try harder to promote the projects and activities and enable others. I've got a muse in my head who has been SCREAMING at me for almost 7 months so I don't need the other distractions. I've got tons of pattern ideas waiting for me to breathe life into them and some that I just need to let go and publish. More on that in part two of fiber reflections and a free pattern too!


KnitNana said...

Can't wait to see patterns...and as long as you stay connected to the ONE place you're a charter member of (RVSpinKnit!) then we'll be happy!

Robin said...

FREE pattern??!! Can't wait to read part 2! Thanks for your comment about my vest...and sorry about the Dolphin Dance, I wanted more...but then again, probably a good thing because if he had only 1 bag left...there would have been some fur flyin' baby!! I'll figure out something and may need to ask your pattern making expertise!!

Amy Boogie said...

The spun yarn and the top look good. Hooray for teaching. Stop the hinting and get to part 2. :)

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