Thursday, July 14, 2011

Drink of Choice

I’ll say first off I’m an American. Well, I’m a Texan and they say that makes me an American. So I’m an American but I don’t like coffee, which makes some doubt my nationality. I don’t like beer and I’m not too crazy about wine. But I do like me a cup of tea. I like hot tea. Black tea. Oolong tea. White tea. I’ll even drink green tea (if pushed).
The reason I’m telling you this is to to show you this:
I can’t remember where I got this mug but I got the teapot in my visit earlier this year to Shakertown, near Lexington, KY. I love that these go together so beautifully. I love the colors and the flow of the glazing. The tans on the lip of the cup are exactly the same as the tans on the top of the teapot.  It’s proof to me every day at work (when everything else testifies against it) that something beautiful feeds the soul and brings me a calmness that I can’t always manage on my own.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

What I did (and didn't do) this weekend

I haven't had that many free weekends this year so I've had all kinds of plans for my weekends this month.  For instance, the Tour de France started last weekend.  In the spinning world, there is a contest known as the Tour de Fleece.  I've never joined a team or anything but this year I thought I would and to that end, I obtained a Polypay fleece in Kentucky earlier this year.  Here's what it looked like when I pulled it out of its bag the other day.
As you can see, it's really pretty dirty and needs to be tended to before spinning.  The plan for the weekend was to get it washed so I could start spinning.  So here's what it looks like now.
Yeah, there's nothing different about it.  I never got round to it.

What I did, however, was work on a variety of lace patterns from vintage patterns to see if they would work for my lace knitting class coming up in August.  Here's the apple leaf lace pattern:
That funny little jog in it is where I decided to start the pattern over again.  It's not blocked but you can see the pattern pretty well.  This was one of those difficult patterns because the written version is so wordy.  Every time it came to the stitch described, "Slip one stitch, knit one stitch, pass the slipped stitch over the knitted stitch," that's what it said.  Once you got that stitch in a row 4 or 5 times, it made it fairly hard to follow.  I tried to chart it out but that didn't work so well either since you change the number of stitches in a row several times over the pattern.  Anyway, it's pretty.  I think it would be a gorgeous pattern for a bedspread.

The other pattern from the same book that I tried was called the rose leaf pattern. (ahem...edited to say "rose" instead of "rise" because I don't think there's any such a thing as a rise leaf)
It's a little harder to see the pattern here when it's not blocked but I think you can see most of it.  This is 2 repeats of the pattern, which I think would make a lovely, lacy top.

And finally, in the "I liked it in the roving but didn't like it in the yarn but I like it again when it's knitted" category, this is the frabjous fibers silk/merino/cashmere yarn that I spun on the drop spindle being knitted into a lacy scarf.
I would have never in hundred million thousand years have thought this yarn would have knitted up like this.  How gorgeous are those colors and the flow of the colors?  I didn't like the yarn and thought I'd just knit this up for someone but wowser.  I'm still planning on giving it away but I've got more of it that I'm spinning and I'm suddenly looking much more forward to finishing that yarn now.