Cherry Bomb Baby

I live in a pile of bricks with a fire puter-outer, a Halloween enthusiast and a pretend lemur, who sometimes admits to being my second son. I have a kitchen for flowers. I know all the lyrics to the Spiderman theme song and (am forced to) sing it everyday. I cook with color. This was a blog mostly about yarn spinning and natural dyeing. Now, it is fair to say, it lacks direction entirely.

Sunday, June 22, 2008


This came in the mail for me a little while ago. It was part of the huge order I previously mentioned. It is one of the favorite fleeces I have from Homestead, its romney and oh so silky. This is the fleece that sold me on romneys. I had tried some previously and yes, they were pleasantly different to all the fine wools I had been working with. Primarily, because they were some of my first bought raw fleeces, the locks were more interesting than all that merino and BFL top I had been getting. In general, I still prefered my fine wools. But this fleece, THIS fleece rocked my world. I got a tiny sample of the wool from Sandy and died. I couldn't even spin the tiny sample immediately because then it would be all gone. I pathetically saved half of it to rub on my face. The colors move around a lot, golden tips, white, tan, grey, silver and stripes of darker brown. I found that the locks were most happy flick carded and spun not too fine, a loosely spun 2 ply worsted weight yarn was soft and shimmering. I have a lot of this, the full fleece from this year and a bit from last year. YUM! I'm still just sampling. I felted a swatch and died it in the indigo pot, its lovely. But, I think I'm destined to spin most of this fleece. Its a fine fate if you ask me. This fleece is for the future, its one of those things that you have to ponder for a while before you can jump in.

This, on the other hand, is immediate gratification:

This is dyed by Sandy, not natural dyed, um could you tell? To be honest, I just wanted the fleece! I missed out on this fleece, its shetland/merino cross and although that sounds interesting and irresistable to all the shetland lovers out there, I wasn't sure it would be fine enough for what I wanted. Sandy sent me a sample and it was a keeper but, by then, most of the fleece was sold-I did manage to snag a bit of undyed and this wild 15oz of "Irish Hoopla" roving. I started in on it today (I've been spinning lots of WHITE and its time for something else.)

It was terribly exciting to spin someone else's colors. It had me thinking a lot about color and what the heck to do with this beautiful and kooky colored roving. My easy way out would be my quick and dirty "Art Yarn!" Thick and thin and thread plied, instant eye candy! But, it wouldn't be used and that seemed too easy. I want to use this one. So, my challenge is to make it into something I would actually wear. The problem is I wear black. Or grey. Or jeans. (OK, my one color weakness is kelley green!) But I don't wear bright blue or pink, still, I think its do-able.

When you get into the roving there are lots of long stretches of earthy greens, browns, pumpkiny oranges and squashy yellows. Earth is good and I can rock that easily but what about the screaming magenta and cotton candy pinks?! There are also chunks of BRIGHT blue, which you can see in the front. I broke up the roving and I've decided to make into a harf. Its got to be a 2 (or I suppose could have been a 3) ply worsted weight yarn. I don't want this to stripe because of the loud colors, I want to take them down a bit. The longer sections of earth tones should dominate this yarn with accents of the kookier colors spread throughout. Most of the brightest colors are in tiny spots so the color breaks up and spreads out and its a marled single and will become more muted when plied. So I hope. The other easy way out of this one would have been to simply tear out the earthy colors and spin those up, that could easily worked out as a beautiful, subtly striping single. But, this way is a better color challenge. And I like the colors, love the roving, I just want to not end up in the trap of LOVING color and not being able to wear it.

I think its going to be fun and ROCK! Since its randomly dyed I've got to try to space out the colors so there isn't an orange end and a pink/blue end. The only thing that worries me about the wearability of this yarn is all the firestar in it. Its dang sparkly and I don't know how sparkly of a person I am. I love the luster of long wools but firestar takes it to a whole other Las Vegas level. Its going to be an interesting knit.

I'm going to have to get out the camera for this spin. My next chance for daytime, picture-taking, spinning in peace time will likely be Monday.

Sunday, June 08, 2008


We went for 10 days to my sweet hometown. I needed 10 days before hand to breathe into a paper bag as I got ready for a red eye plane trip with a 1 year old and 4 year old. Then 10 days on the other side of that to lie in the child's pose on my yoga mat to recover from the plane ride back. And lets say that is why you have not heard from me. Thank goodness they had a some wooly goodness for me in the midwest!

I scored this at the Fiber Studio in Minneapolis. This place is heaven, especially if you are into art yarns or felting. There is a heavy felting vibe there. Like my new turkish spindle?! Yum! I've been craving a turkish spindle for a LONG time now and I've been holding out for a special hand turned wood spindle for a while. It wasn't exactly from the wool festival I'd been planning to buy it from, (I was hoping to make it to BSG this year) but it was a cool souvenir and I got to support a new little fiber business. I've spun and plied happily on it now and I'm getting the feel for this low whorl thing slowly.

Now, see what happens when I try to take pictures? I get a lot of help. Here is an itty bitty batt that I spun up quickly into a 2 ply, heavy worsted weight yarn. Enough for a little baby hat I think. This was a hand blended, drum carded batt of merino, also from The Fiber Studio.

Some irresistable wool that I got to pick over, its 3/4 romney and 1/4 merino. Its got about a 4-5 inch staple length on average and a crisp handle. I can't believe that I am such a romney slut now. I never would have thought it of myself. And doesn't my thumb look kind of like a grown up lady's thumb here? There is a nail that isn't half chewed off-that is so great! See how the wool calms me?

I thought about blogging a lot this last month. In fact, I did lots of thinking about it. I also did lots of spinning, a bit of knitting and took a few pictures. I'm really going to have to make a contract with my blog about not starting so many new projects. I hoped having a blog would help with that. I'm trying to hold myself down to finishing one project at a time now before beginning something new. This means, finishing one sewing, knitting, spinning or felting project before moving onto another unfinished project in the same category.