Cotton Club

2015-07-01 16.42.31I have ordered a nice variety of colors in 8/2 cotton for weaving towels. I don’t have any specific structure in mind yet. A good twill is always nice, but there were some bumberet towels recently in Handwoven magazine that I really like. Bumberet is a new structure for me and I love playing with colors.  I can put a real variety of color in the warp, and weave with one color, changing for each towel.  One shuttle weave make that part go much faster.  I really need to make sure I don’t get carried away with too many colors in one warp though.

I will have to sit and play with the drafting software and will try to post some of my planning process as I go.  Hopefully I can get some woven and up for sale soon.

That reminds me I need to hem up the last towels I wove in cotton and linen and get them up for sale too.  I just need to find a place to set up the sewing machine and leave it out for a couple of days.

Dyeing to Knit Socks

Here is a little photo essay.  I had a ball of the merino/bamboo blend sock yarn in cream that I wanted to dye and knit up for a teacher gift. I used a sprinkle dye method with dry Kool-Aid and bottles of food coloring. You need a bit of acid provided by vinegar and heat provided by microwaving during the process to set the colors.  Since the dyes are food, they are safe in your everyday pans.

Skein up the yarn and tie around it in different places to keep the tangling down.

Soak the skein in warm water for a while in a microwave safe dish.
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Pour off most of the water and add a glug of vinegar. Swish it around.

Start with the lighter colors and sprinkle them on dry (Kool-Aid) or drip them (food color).
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Let the colors saturate the skein for a while move it gently around to expose undyed areas and add more sprinkles. Microwave in bursts of 1-2 minutes between colors.
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After coloring to your satisfaction (be careful not to overdo it the first time).  Give it a final trip on the microwave carousel to fully set all the dyes for another 1-2 minutes.

Let cool a bit, then rinse fully in lukewarm water.

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Hang the skein to let it dry.

Twist it up and keep or sell.

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Wind it into a ball when you are ready to use it.

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I then put it on my CSM bobbin to knit it from.
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Finished socks are ready to give or sell.
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Treading the Boards

3 pairs of socks

These are the socks I have knit so far this week.  A pair for Katie on the left, and the other two pairs are up for grabs for $19 a pair.  If you are interested and in town, send me a note in the contact form.   They are a woman’s size 8-9.  If you  like the purple ones on the left, I can get more of that yarn in a couple of days.

Measured Steps Socks

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Treat your feet & buy yourself a pair today!

Do you know how hard it is to take a good picture of your own feet?  I have gotten better at it over the years since I have always loved handknit socks and enjoyed documenting my creations on Ravelry, Facebook and my blog. Now I am selling my own line of handmade socks.

These short Measured Steps socks are fun and funky sport socks of a machine washable and dryable, 50% merino wool, 25% rayon from bamboo and 25% nylon blend yarn. They are soft and comfortable and handmade on my circular sock knitting machine. You. can read more about that here.  They are made with the ideal yarn for summer socks, wool for moisture control and softness, bamboo for coolness, and nylon for durability.

Because I got the yarn at a good price, I am just getting started in the business and want you all to know the joy of handmade socks, I am currently taking orders for women’s sizes 6-9 and offering them for a special introductory price of $14 a pair to my readers and friends (paid in cash and picked up). If you want them mailed to you, it will be an extra $2 to cover Paypal fees and postage. There is a limit of one pair per person at this special price and you must order by Friday, May 22. If you are local, use the “contact” form in the right sidebar (or below if you are on mobile) to let me know. If you are out of town, please place your order through my store.  In either case, I will contact you for color and sizing details and let you know how long it will be before I can get them made.

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The colors available right now are below.  Your computer screen may render the colors slightly different than the actual color, but they are very close on my screen.

Yarn #s 1 & 2 on the right will produce a “Fairisle” look like the pair above.

yarn choices
click for bigger picture


The yarns on the left (#s 3,4 & 5) will produce a striped pattern similar to this.

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Again, send me a note using the contact form to order or use my store if you are out of town.


Star Pupil!

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Here is one of my star pupils, Sharon, in her lovely sweater!  She finished it in just 4 weeks of class and learned a bunch of new skills in the making: swatching, increases, mirrored decreases, picking up stitches, ribbing, pattern reading and problem solving. The yarn is Juniper Moon Farm Moonshine a wool, alpaca and silk blend, and is the perfect color for her.  My two other students are well on their way to finishing and I will hopefully show you their pictures in a couple of weeks.