Sunday, January 30, 2011

High Road

High Road modelled by AVFKW
After two weeks of "commuter knitting" and a final push today, I finished and blocked "High Road" designed by Mary-Heather Cogar and commissioned by A Verb for Keeping Warm (AVFKW)'s Proverbial Club. 70/30 SW Merino/Silk "Metamorphosis" was dyed "Pilgrim" by AVFKW and evokes the heat, raw land, and minerals of Santa Fe.  The unique construction of this shawl really shows off the variegated yarn.  The shape of the shawl blossomed as I blocked it - the process was similar to that of a wet chick drying its feathers and becoming the more recognizable form we are familiar with (huh? nevermind - the lesson here is to make no big moves before blocking!).  I learn much from this Proverbial Club.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Marmalade from Homegrown

No images, just notes.
Last weekend we picked the oranges from our tree-bushes. Whereas the navel oranges are mild enough to eat out-of-hand, the other unidentified type is intensely aromatic, nearly bitter, and must be good for cooking, n'est-ce pas? Many of them were scrubbed with a new sponge. Many more await.

Quick, here's the data before I forget: 8C fruit, 7 or 8C fluid. Batch 1 had 8C base, batch 2 had 6C base. Used some raw along with the white sugar. Total yield: 8-12oz, 2-8oz, 4oz dregs.

Longer version: 8C chopped oranges and pulp, 2C squeezed orange juice + 4C (or was it 5C?) water + 1C lemon juice. Simmer for 5min, soak 18hr, simmer 45min. 8C (plus all that sugar) for the first batch is almost too much for the 3Q skillet. Boil to gel state, yields 5-12oz plus 4oz. Second batch is 6C, boil to gel state, yields 3-12oz plus 2-8oz plus 4oz in the leftover jar.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Jan 17: a year

First One: 4g, 7ft
A year ago on January 17, knitflix taught me how to use my spinning wheel. I learned to spin, then ply some wool that I had from an intro class several years before. 
Group of First Ones
How could I have known that I would embrace this medium! I've also been introduced to wonderful and helpful people along the way - my local fiber shop was pointed out to me when I called knitflix and said that "I ran out of fiber and need more, now." Yeah - need more *now* - a familiar phrase.

more fun than a barrel full of monkeys
Spinning fiber on a wheel or a spindle alters the fiber as well as the brain waves. Someone find a neurologist and hook me up - let's see what the readings show.

Thank you, J.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Fire in the hands

...from the Kundert Spindle, which was a gift to me. It is well balanced and just keeps going with a single push. Sweet.
Singles and plying were done on the spindle. I tried to spin beyond my typical laceweight zone and produced something between fingering and sportweight.

30g, 69.2yd, 2-ply, woolen, of Fiberfiend's flame.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Defiant blood oranges

2.5 lb CA blood oranges plus one lemon (8c total) plus 7c water plus 1c+8.5c raw+white sugar yields 10c marmalade. Damn the lack of electricity and the lack of other things. I have water and gas and a third-world connection from the fridge to the neighbor's outlet and I am making something fantastic and heating the kitchen and myself in the process.