Monday, May 27, 2013

Dye More

You'd think I had all the time in the world to do whatever I felt like doing, and that no deadlines were in any way doing anything even remotely akin to looming. I've certainly been acting like it.
Which is not to say that I didn't make instructions for tomorrow's class, including a bunch of variations that seemed like fun. I did.

I also packed up the last of the kits for Bead & Button that were missing oddments here and there. Unless every class suddenly sells right out (only one class is close to full), I'll have plenty of kits for Meet the Teachers.
Also one or two new kits (not new patterns though), Ripples (above) and Kell (below) which I was originally slated to teach until they decided that they needed my classroom which in all fairness at the time had no registrations.
 I also finished these ziggy zaggy socks which were really fun to knit, the yarn being ideal if slightly hideous.
 Due to the clever angling of my foot in the picture as well as the convenient fact that photographing ones own feet, even with a self-timer, is a little constraining, what you can't see of my overdye job is the indisputable evidence that I did not stir the dyepot. I decided to go out to dinner with friends instead, and while the crockpot is perfect for kettle-dyed yarn, it is less so for overdyeing finished goods. My socks have Streaks of Dark.
 Eh, at least there's a chance I'll wear them this way; the heinous colours above, less likely.

I also overdyed the two balls of silk yarns from Thursday's post, and even though I know I added all sorts of dyes to the pot and even though the water ended up clear, neither is appreciably any different than before.

I also completed another almost-four kit-slings for Meet the Teachers (one is missing some parts) and unfortunately in the process realised that I lack wisdom in The Ways Of Painting CPVC because the black scratches off if you even glance sharply at it. Still though, they're quite functional if full of cat hair.

Almost a full week of work left and man I hope I can get the new air-conditioner installed because today was hot and humid and while the basement is delightful compared with the main level, any kind of cooking is right out, and even being very very still and not working up a sweat is still less than ideal.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Dye Dye Dye

Yummy. Silk.
I was overdyeing medium taupe and dark taupe, but all of that bled out and so I have rather brighter and less moody colours than I had intended.

I might just dye again.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Proof of Concept

Bead and Button is fast approaching and I'm in pretty good shape on the Planning For Classes Front. I've made samples recently enough that I shouldn't have forgotten what comes next while I'm teaching them. I have three or four colour-ways and will bring completed samples in each colour-way for each class. I've assembled far more kits than I have sign-ups.

Not too concerned there.

Meet the Teachers is the thing that's been giving me conniptions though.

We get the eight-foot table and you can't have anything on the floor around it, and anything on top of the table can be no more than three feet high, and therein lies the challenge. 

At previous shows (to which I've had to fly), I made fabric boxes to hold kits that folded flat and assembled with velcro, but they were pretty high maintenance. The kits would get messy and out of order and sort of fall over and the boxes were pretty flimsy even with inside stiffening and they don't hold all that much but this time what with being able to drive there I thought I could do better.

I started thinking about tiered displays, something like magazine racks, and started searching online to buy some. Most seemed too small too big too narrow too wide too tall or less useful in some way or another. Then I saw something that looked like a deck chair, a sling chair, the kind that has a length of fabric suspended between the short ends of a wooden frame, and THEN I saw instructions to make a deck chair and then I started Having Thoughts.

My woodworking skills are minimal, but you don't need to sand or mitre or in fact much of anything if you use PVC pipes. I hear they can be painted, but time could be a factor so that may not happen.

I made one as proof of concept before buying out Lowe's entire stock of half-inch PVC pipes, corners, tees and feet.
 It's missing back feet, but is otherwise what I would characterise as a resounding success. The kits are all visible, it's light and folds flat and the most difficult part (not so difficult) was drilling the holes for the bolts on which the fold/unfold action pivots. I think it might turn out to be rather awkward to trim the bolts (they're about a third of an inch too long), but I might just use them to hang samples and make use of their sticking-out-ness.

I'm feeling awfully self-satisfied right now, which will no doubt pass as soon as I begin cutting three-and-a-quarter inch lengths (ten per unit) for the other four stands that I need to make.
And I also made another colour-way for Cellini Netting.

Sunday, May 12, 2013


Really, it's not as though I'm this obsessive shopper or anything, in fact I do try to not go overboard and be realistic about Need versus Lust (taking into account such factors as Incredible Bargain, Limited Edition, Never To Be Seen Again, One of A Kind, and so on) and usually I do pretty well, but this weekend was a bounty (relatively speaking) of More Stuff.

My friend Peg who doesn't knit, weave, crochet, felt, spin or dye (just to let you know that she's not exactly well-versed in fibre) was in Peru and brought me back this gorgeous and huge handspun skein of alpaca.
 I went to the annual art fair at the sculpture park and picked up another mug by the same people who made my birthday mug from a few years ago. I think I should replace my crappy mug collection (although "collection" is too flattering a term since that implies intent and in terms of aesthetics, there was none. They'll be perfect as a starter set for my son's first apartment, whenever that is) with a set of lovely hand-thrown mugs.
At spinners' yesterday we were able to paw through the yarn and fibre collection of a knitter/spinner/weaver who is no longer able to use it.
There's an awful lot of silk in that pile (that will be overdyed) as well as plenty of Noro (that will not be) and this was after editing (I decided against two wonderful sweater lots).

I guess my birthday started two weeks early.

Apart from the small problem of where to locate this lot (it's about a garbage bag's worth in terms of volume, so not inconsequential) I'm not sorry.

My cat isn't entirely disapproving either.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Looks Like Less

I cut up precursors to this twice, so even though it's small and took only a few hours, there was a LOT of stitching.
 And apparently it got violent as there's a spot of blood on one of the fringe beads.

Even though I won't be teaching Kell at Bead&Button, I had already started buying beads for kits by the time it was cut, so what the hell, I may as well bring kits, and so I needed a sample, didn't I?
Just the one colour-way, unless I find some more spaghetti beads which is highly unlikely as they've disappeared off the face of the earth except in various shades of blue with which I am done already.

 Mostly what I've been doing is kits for the classes.
But the really big thrill of the weekend? Sitting in the DMV to renew my license.