Have Ewe Any Wool?

Friday, June 29, 2007

Fabulous Wednesday!

Wednesday was an absolutely fabulous day - in spite of the horrid humidity and heat that's been "plaguing us" the past several days!

The knitting guild meeting tonight was great! Anita showed a number of very interesting shawl and sweater pins from Leslie Wind. They were gorgeous! The best part is that they're light weight, so they don't weight down a delicate shawl made out of fine lace weight yarn. Definitely a "must have"!

Serife, another dedicated knitter, recently discovered our group, has a very unique way of knitting. I've affectionately called it "Turkish Knitting" since she's from Turkey, but she actually learned to knit from her Albanian grandmother. I've posted a video at the following link: "Turkish Knitting". It's fascinating to watch and her method results in very fast knitting and very little wasted effort. It's MUCH more efficient than the "standard throwing" method of knitting.

Besides the normal "show and tell" of our current and upcoming projects, I got another surprise. Catherine gave me a jar of her home made fermented veggies. She'd told me about them a couple of weeks ago and even gave me the recipe. Quite a lovely bonus. Doesn't it look delicious? I LOVE the all the colors. Of course, I opened the jar the moment I got home and tasted some of each type of veggie. It was DELICIOUS!!!! Thanks Catherine!!!!

And that's not all! The fabulous day continues! I received a birthday package from my friend, Mia. I didn't get a chance to open it before I went to the guild meeting. She sent me an absolutely fabulous birthday package chock full of "fibery goodness" and some Swedish chocolate covered toffee candies to keep up my strength, of course! The chocolates were hidden inside the purple tin (ah....purple!). There were 5 skeins of fabulous vintage wool yarn hand dyed by Mia herself - in gorgeous shades of purples, pinks, and a touch of blue. It's absolutely fantastic! But wait....there's more! In addition to the fabulous yarn, there's also some hand crafted stitch markers, a hand knit wash cloth (again, note the purple!) violet soap, and a spool of really cool ribbon. Thanks so much!

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Mystery Stole 3, Lilith, and Socks

Last night was very productive. I reviewed the Lilith pattern for my shrug and wrote out some "tips and guidelines" to help me keep track of button hole placement and pattern repeats. All that's left is the knitting and the search for interesting buttons to complement the cranberry red Louet Kid Lin yarn. I also managed to knit another inch or so on my latest socks - the Wildfoote purple and black yarn using Fiber Trend's "Hellen's Favorite Socks" pattern. This is one of the projects that will "keep my sanity" as I work on Mystery Stole 3 (MS3).

My biggest accomplishment of the evening was the completion of the swatch for MS3! It's not blocked yet, but that won't take any time at all - I plan to do that this evening. I've decided on the crystal beads to complement the white Zephyr (50% silk/ 50% Merino). The yarn is an absolute dream to knit with - it's very soft and pleasant to the touch.

I got my beads at "Bead Artist" in Leesburg. The staff was very nice and extremely helpful. I was amazed at the variety of beads they carried and the number of interesting classes they have. Their prices are quite reasonable as well. My time was somewhat limited as I had DH with me. I had PROMISED that I'd only run in to buy the beads I needed for MS3 and that I would NOT look around or otherwise "shop". It was difficult, but I kept my word. I'm definitely planning a return trip....though I plan to do it without DH in tow!

If you want to join the MS3 Knit-along, you'd better hurry! Sign-ups end on July 6th - after that, you won't be able to join and the pattern will remain a mystery. I've seen the results of previous Mystery Stoles with this designer, and the resulting stoles are absolutely stunning!

Friday, June 22, 2007


I've FINALLY finished spinning the generic wool roving with the recycled denim bits flecked throughout. I managed to finish spinning the singles on Tuesday morning.....and plied one bobbin on Tuesday before going to my spinning/knitting group. When I got home, I finished plying the final bobbin.

The roving was like spinning dryer lint - not a very pleasant roving to spin - I think that's why it took me so long to finish spinning it. It really dries the hands and leaves bits of shredded blue jeans beneath you as you spin. I have a total of 10 skeins and still have a small ball and small skein of singles that I can ply as well (if needed).

I really like the overall effect of the finished yarn. It's nubby with lumps and bumps of various colors of blue throughout. The resulting yarn is about worsted weight and should make a very interesting sweater or jacket to wear over blue jeans. However, I don't recommend wearing a "fleece" type of shirt beneath it or you'll be full of shredded blue jeans flecks! I'm hoping that after setting the twist, knitting a garment, and then blocking the garment, the "flakiness" of the yarn will dramatically diminish.

On the knitting front, I've started another pair of socks. These are out of deep purple and black Wildfoote from Brown Sheep. I'd started them while waiting at DMV, but the yarn splits easily and I had to "fix" several stitches. I didn't like how it looked, so at my friend Catherine's, I took out my sock and pulled all the needles out so I could start over. I think I nearly gave her heart failure! I had only knit about 1 inch of the cuff at the time, so it really wasn't a great loss.

At the group on Tuesday, I also wound off a skein of Louet Kid-Lin in a deep cranberry color. I'll be starting on the Lilith (by Louet). It's a wonderful pattern that can be a stole, a shrug, or a vest - talk about versatile! It's a lovely yarn comprised of two separate strands - one strand of mohair and one strand of linen. The finished item should be absolutely stunning - I've already fondled and ogled both a shop model on loan from Louet as well as the purple one a friend of mine just completed. I can't wait until mine is done!

Oh....I almost forgot! I got a very cute birthday card from my friend Ferol. She definitely knows me too well - the front of the card says, "Bring coffe and no one get hurt"! It's the PERFECT card for me!

AND......my friend Karen sent me a fabulous skein of Colinette "Jitterbug" sock yarn in deep purples, black, and a few other yummy colors. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

AND.....the package from Astrid's Dutch Obsessions in the Netherlands arrived! (Astrid is fabulous to deal with - I highly recommend her - and she carries some gorgeous yarns!) Inside is the wonderful Kauni yarn that some of us ordered, as well as some fabulous sock yarn that another friend ordered. Mine is the large pinky-purple skein on the top right. I'll be making Jeanie Townsend's Rainbow Shawl. The only hard part of ordering yarn with friends will be parting with the gorgeous yarns so they can be delivered to their "rightful owners"!

One final bit of "late breaking news" - I finally got my invite to join Ravelry! Wahoo! I've started putting my info in - it's so exciting. The Ravelry website is in its infancy, but it's totally awesome! What a fabulous knitting/crocheting resource!

Saturday, June 16, 2007

What a Wonderful Weekend!

This weekend has been absolutely fabulous. It's been jam packed with ethnic pride, good food, knitting, and fabulous company!

Friday night started with a celebration of my Norwegian heritage at the local Sons of Norway Lodge. The food was wonderful.....fruit soup, salmon spread, meatballs, etc......and of course, tons of scrumptious desserts! The evening's entertainment was provided by a very talented Scandinavian fiddling group representing three countries of origin - Norway, Sweden, and Denmark. The music was absolutely fabulous.

In the picture above, the fiddle on the right is called a Hardanger Fiddle and is from the Hardanger region of Norway. It has 8 strings....4 that are played and 4 that resonate in a somewhat echoing sound. The music and stories that the music represents is traditional and has been passed down through the generations....and music is still being written for it today. These fiddles are all handcrafted and are inlaid with mother-of-pearl. They are just gorgeous and the sound is wonderful!

This picture isn't as clear as the posed picture, but it shows the group in action. I loved how animated and happy the musicians were as they played, but it made it very challenging to get a good picture!

The group received a Grammy nomination this year for their "Hambo in the Snow" album of traditional music. It's the FIRST time a Scandinavian group has been nominated for traditional music! I can definitely understand why they were nominated - they were fabulous!

I had been invited to attend the meeting by Melanie whom I met last weekend at the Potomac Celtic Festival when she stopped by the tent where we were teaching drop spindle spinning. I'm so glad she invited me - I had a fabulous time! And, Joy-of-Joys, I'm joining the lodge....and Melanie will be my sponsor! I love it when things just kinda fall into place!

Saturday was spent in a delightful afternoon of good food, good company and knitting fun at my friend Catherine's house. It started with chatting and catching up on current knitting projects (and planned projects), showing and sharing our new books and patterns, etc. I brought "The Knitted Gardens" by Jan Messent. It just arrived with this morning's mail, so it was a very timely delivery. I cannot believe the detail in her creations! They are absolutely stunning! Lisa brought some books to share as well - "The Natural Knitter" and "No Sheep for You". I'm thinking that I really need to get the "No sheep for You" book - it has a lot of very useful information and details on the "non wool" fibers and yarns available for knitting in addition to some very nice patterns.

The "show and tell" session was followed by a very yummy Indian Feast for lunch. Catherine is a fabulous hostess. She provided an wonderful variety of tasty Indian food - including her own incredible home made lime pickles. The spicy flavor was wonderful - my mouth is watering again just thinking about it! I liked it better than any of the commercially prepared pickles and chutneys. Oh...I almost forgot - she also had some home made duck proscuitto. That was absolutely wonderful as well! (I'm getting the recipe for both.....mmmmmmm!!!!!)

Of course, the lunch feast was followed by even more knitty chat we well as some actual knitting. There were 4 of us, so it was very comfortable and cozy. We did a lot of laughing and shared a lot of knitting tidbits. Catherine is an absolute fountain of interesting knitting information. I always leave her house feeling very enriched! I always come away with a new knitting fact or two. One interesting fact I learned today was that true Fair Isle uses only 5 colors. That was shocking to me as I always thought that Fair Isle just meant knitting with multiple colors. The traditional colors weren't exactly what I'd thought they were - they're blue, red, black, yellow, and white! The Shetland Museums Service has a wonderful description of the colors used and the history of Fair Isle knitting.

Oh...in addition to her new Japanese knitting book full of fabulous charted patterns, Cathereine had a new drop spindle that I got to try. She has one of the coveted "Moosies" by Jonathan Bosworth! It's gorgeous and has a wonderful weight. I tried spinning some Cormo as well as some silk on the Moosie - it spun like a dream! The "Moosies" are made from naturally shed moose horns - is that cool or what? (I have now been added to the "Moosie" waiting list - I'll have to wait until after April 2008 to get one, but it will be well worth it! I think the anticipation is half the fun!)

Friday, June 15, 2007

The Infamous Round "II-it"

I mentioned last weekend that my Mother's Day gift finally arrived. It was ordered way back at the beginning of May, but it's hand-crafted and the designer was awaiting parts for it, so I had to be patient.

When I started to open the shipping box, I could NOT understand why my dog was sooooo interested in my package. She's usually quite "bored" as I open boxes that contain knitting or spinning tools. This package was different. She kept trying to "beak" her way into the box - I'd only ever seen this behavior with fleeces.....not wood and metal tools! Her interest in the box was so intense thatI thought she was going to try to "crawl inside"!

It turns out that they wrapped my order with a crumpled portion of a dog food bag to provide some cushioning of my package in transit (What a great way to recycle!). Of course, Sandy honed in on the residual scent of dog food and HAD to see what was inside the box. She quickly lost interest once she saw that inside the box was my Round "II-it" from Indigo Hound. It's a fabulous device used to blend fibers and/or colors in preparation for spinning. They taught me how to use my wool combs as well as how to use the Round "II-it" at the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival.

When I get around to using it to blend colors (LOL....when I "get a Round II-it"), I'll post some more pictures - it's easier to "show" than to "describe" in this case. (I also realize that I forgot to include another part in the pictures below, but it will show up when I photograph this cool tool "in use".)

I received my order of Zephyr today from "The Knitting Zone". It's a lace weight yarn, 50% Merino/50% Silk - I chose the white. I'm going to use it for "Mystery Stole 3" which recommended either black or white for the best results. I ordered it on Tuesday....and it arrived today! The customer service is phenomenal! I was kept up to date on the entire process and received my order in record time. I highly recommend this vendor!

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Fait Accompli!

This past weekend (Sunday), I FINALLY finished the Sockotta socks.
They fit perfectly! It's a bit too hot right now to wear them, but on cooler nights or this fall,I'm sure they'll be perfect. The two socks differ slightly, even though they're from the same ball of yarn. The first one was somewhat mottled....reminding me of an Impressionist painting. The second one, however, "pooled" in the instep area. The pooling is a bit subtle because of the yarn, but it's definitely there.

At the knitting/spinning group on Tuesday, I continued to work on the beaded scarf - I'm almost done with the first half! It's really coming along nicely. It's an easy project to "carry along", so it's mainly my "mindless knitting" project.....I just have to remember to slip the beads at the proper point!

I also managed to work in some spinning in this week as well. I finally plied the purple Merino/Tencel that I finished spinning last month. The finished skein is 7 oz. and appears to be about a DK weight, so it's very versatile. The remaining ounce is in two separate "mini-skeins" as singles. It spun like a dream and is very lustrous - I haven't decided what I'll make from it yet. I may mix it with other Merino/Tencel and make a sweater or vest from it in multi-colors. I just need to find the right inspiration at this point! I also spun some more of the blue wool with the recycled denim - one bobbin is nearly full. I just have to fill the other, ply it, and that's all done too!

We also had a horrible thunderstorm today - complete with two sessions of hail. I don't have a single screen on the back of my house that didn't get multiple holes in it from the storm - and my tomato plants look VERY sick - one of them looks like it lost at least 3/4 of it's leaves....and huge chunks of the plant itself. I just hope they all survive! I took these pictures about 1 hr. AFTER the storm passed - and there's STILL a lot of ice!

Poor little tomatoes!

Saturday, June 09, 2007

A Perfect Day at the Celtic Festival

What a fabulous day! I spent the entire day with a few of my friends at the Potomac Celtic Festival where some of us taught a drop spindle spinning class. We didn't have very many students this year as the workshop was set up at the last minute. Instead, it gave us some time to just sit around and drop spindle spin and chat for a couple of hours. The weather was fantastic! Sunny with a bit of a breeze....and certainly not the sweltering heat and humidity of last year's festival!

Jayme and Janet, and I had a lot of fun just spinning the afternoon away. We also brought a variety of spun yarns as well as samples of different types of fibers. Janet had some silk hankies and pulled on into roving so Melanie (one of our students) could try spinning it. Jayme brought some ingeo (made from corn), soy silk, silk, various wools, and some very interesting roving made from wool, recycled soda bottles, and recycled blue-jeans! I brought a couple of skeins of hand spun - one generic rather "scratchy" wool and some natural brown Blue Faced Leicester (very soft!) as well as some pencil roving - which worked quite well for the younger students.

There was another spinner, Sarah(?), that was demoing spinning and also had a booth at the festival. She had an absolutely incredible spindle - it was gorgeous! The post was "twisted" wood - definitely a work of art. She's just recently become a seller of these hand crafted spindles, but was totally sold out at the moment. I'm definitely going to check back with her once she gets her new shipment in!

My friend, Amy, is a yearly participant and was part of the living history exhibit - Tuathe Preachain, Iron Age Celts (50 B.C.). I had her pose with another of her clansmen so I could get a clear shot of all their gear. Amy's dress is made of linen - this fabric signifies wealth. She's also wearing a leather "apron" which comes in VERY handy when you're working with the sharp wool combs - it's a much needed accessory. Amy's fellow clansman is wearing a fabulous leather ruana.

I chatted a while with Amy and her friend, Simone while looking over the various yarns, wool preparation, and spinning implements they had on display. Simone's sister, Michelle Parrish, did all the the mini-skeins of yarn specifically for Simone to show the varied colors you can get from all the natural dyes. Most of the dyes were from plants that Michelle grew herself. I was quite impressed with the variety and depth of colors presented. Who knew you could accomplish all this with natural dyes?

One of the little girls LOVED to blow the horn - she was quite good at it too! In the background, you can see a variety of jewelry - lots of metal and amber. The second photo provides a closer view of the variety of jewelry.

The tools and grains were fascinating as well.

They did not have "modern wheat" like we do today. The wooden bowls contain some of the traditional grains that were used in 50 B.C.

Clockwise starting in the top left:
Spring Wheat - lighter, lower in gluten
Oats (not yet rolled)
Stone ground rye
Winter Wheat - heavier, higher in gluten. Generally used to make bread.

The blacksmith, "The Magic Badger", was fascinating to watch and seemed to really enjoy telling us about his craft. He described what he was doing with each tool and strike of the hammer....and why. It was fascinating!

Check out the knives with the glass globes below - I love how the metal is twisted!

I did a little bit of shopping while there. I "had" to buy some pecan shortbread and several pasties to bring home for dinner. DH dearly loves pasties! Then, I found the perfect tote bag - "Triple Goddess" tote in purple....and the matching 80x100 wall hanging or ground cloth from the "Funky People" (TM) The Celtic Collection. I got a few other Celtic inspired items as well.

AND.....to make the day even MORE perfect, Melanie, one of our students (who is also part Norwegian just like me) belongs to the local "Sons of Norway" group. I had initially found out about the local group when I'd gone down to the Norwegian market at Union Station a few years ago at Christmas time. (Norway sponsors a lovely model train display in the lobby of Union Station in Washington, DC. and the Sons of Norway had a Norwegian market there that weekend as well.) The group has now moved closer to where I live, so it's going to be MUCH easier to try to get the meetings, so I'm planning to check them out next week! Takk!

Spinning Tip of the Day
Many thanks to Jayme for a fabulous idea! I had been winding off the singles from my drop spindle onto my small niddy-noddy to make a skein which I'd later convert to a center pull ball. I'd planned to repeat this process until the drop spindle was full again. THEN, I'd finally take the two singles in the center pull balls and my drop spindle and ply the two together to make a two-ply yarn. Jayme suggested that once each spindle is full, I can simply take a dowel slightly smaller than the dowel on my drop spindle and slip the single ply directly from the drop spindle onto the dowel. What a great idea! It sure saves a lot of time....and the yarn on the dowels is ready to be plied with nearly no effort. Quite a contrast to what I'd had planned. Thanks Jayme! I now plan to use Jayme's method, and then I'll take the dowels and "mount" them through holes in a small box so they can "spin freely" while I ply - a cheap way of creating a Lazy Kate

More "Fibery" News......
I just joined the "Mystery Stole 3" knitalong - Thanks for the info Anita! I'm really looking forward to this. I had joined "Mystery Stole 2", but never got a chance to do the stole. This time, I'm a bit more confident with lace, so I think I'll actually start and complete this one. This stole also uses beads, which will add interest to the stole. The designer will be using the "add beads as you go" method which uses a crochet hook to add the beads rather than "pre-stringing them - this saves "wear and tear" on the yarn. This means that I'll also be learning a new technique!

The final fabulous thing that happened today is that my mother's day gift from DH arrived! Wahoo! Since this post is already quite long, I'll leave the "reveal" of my gift and the photos until my next post.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

More Knitting Progress and More Goodies!

At the spinning/knitting group on Tuesday, I managed to get down to the start of the heel on the second Sockotta sock. Hurrah! Finishing the pair of socks this week is a definite possibility! I have some new fiber lust - my friend Lynn was spinning some luscious purple silk....I'm definitely lusting after that fiber! I think I'll have to dye the silk hankies that Ce gave me purple - I'm not sure whether to use Kool-aid or one of the commercial dyes.....decisions, decisions!

I've definitely decided that the next "item" I will tackle will be to finish the nearly completed Rowan Linen Drape shell. It's nearly summer now, and I definitely could use another shell. I just hope it still fits! (I started it several years ago, and aging does have some shape-changing consequences - LOL!) Then again, when I finish it, if doesn't quite fit, it may give me an incentive to "shape up"!

True to form, my pattern order from Diva Knitting arrived in record time. Fabulous customer service - as always! She's so quick! And....the patterns ship for free! I got the Noni "Prism" bag - I'd been ogling Nicol's progress on this same bag as she worked on it (check out her Feb 25 and March 10, 2007 posts) I definitely needed one for myself. The two tone will definitely give me much needed practice with colorwork, bI think I'll make the first one in a solid color. That will allow me to get it done rather quickly so I have a nice knitting project bag. After all, the Prism looks like the perfect shape to hold some yarn and a set of straight needles. Plus...I've wanted it even more after fondling one at ThreadBear's trunk show of Noni bags!

I also received my shipment of a partial fleece - it's a colored Rambouillet cross from Minnesota. It was listed as black in color (and looks black in the photo), but it appears to more deep dark chocolate brown rather than black. It's still a very lovely and rich looking fleece. Perhaps the brown is more dirt than color.....we'll see after I get a bit of it washed up. Its' a very soft fleece from a ewe that's mostly Ramboillet, but has some Corriedale/Suffolk (where the black gene comes from). The fineness is in the mid-60's, so it's quite a lovely bit of wool.

Monday, June 04, 2007

A Rose by Any Other Name

I caught this lovely picture yesterday morning....just after the rain started. I thought it was beautiful, so I thought I'd share it.

OK...back to the knitting front. I'm planning to do some major work on the second sock.....I wonder how quickly I can get it completed so I can start another project? (So far, I've completed about 4" of the second sock! Hopefully, I get through the heel and onto the foot later today.)

I also need to resurrect one of my former "Works in Progress" so I can keep with my New Years Resolution of completing one old work in progress per month. Hmmmm....I really should get my linen Kim Hargreaves shell back out and finish it. PLUS...I've got to pick a new project of two to be added to the "PIW" list from the new pattern books I got from Continental Cat.

Saturday, June 02, 2007

Thank You Summer Secret Santa!

Wahoo! I got home this evening and waiting for me was a FABULOUS package from my Summer Secret Santa - all the way from the Netherlands! What a fantastic surprise! Based on the clue, I'm guessing that "Continental Cat" was my Secret Summer Santa. She really stalked me well....and did a FABULOUS job picking out just the right gifts for me! Thanks sooooo much!!!!

My package was filled with the most wonderful yarn/knitty goodies and LOTS of yummy chocolate. I even have two fabulous pattern books to select my next projects from. The gifts were all wrapped in purple and pink wrapping paper! Inside, there were also some packets of seeds so I can have some lovely summer flowers in my garden! In addition to all the knitting goodies and food, she included an MP3 of summer themed songs...which I can listen to while knitting, gardening, or whenever!

I just love the yarn - it's hand spun from Texel sheep wool. The natural colored is from Blue Texel Sheep. the colored is from hand spun hand dyed white Texel. It's fabulous!

Here's the information about the Texel sheep - I found it absolutely fascinating! I just love learning about the various breeds and their history! (Click on the photo to enlarge it for reading.)

Of course, one MUST have a respectable amount of chocolate to properly knit or spin. I think this will provide many hours of "knitting nourishment"....there are even sprinkles to put on my ice cream!

Thanks again for the absolutely wonderful package! I feel so special!

Friday, June 01, 2007

Yarn Shops, Dogs, and Socks!

Thursday, I spent most of the late afternoon and early evening at ThreadBear Fiber Arts Studio - that store is so wonderful! It's quite large - about the size of the average grocery store in the 1970's - think of the size of the old A&P stores or the older Safeway stores. That's HUGE for a yarn shop! And it's chock full of fabulous yarns and patterns! It's "Knitting Nirvana".

I'm definitely a sucker for animals, so I took about 10 pictures of the "store dogs" - Tate and Connor. They're such sweeties! Tate (the brown one) "pretended" to be shy and scurried away every time he saw me with the camera - as a result, I had several photos of him running away or turning his head away. In the end though, vanity got the best of him and he POSED for some pictures as you can see here. Tate was quite the little "ham"....and definitely LOVES attention!

Connor just laid on the footrest and couldn't care less if I took a picture or not. I did manage to get some cute shots of both of them....and i even caught a basket full of my purchases on the couch! The shop has several wonderful seating areas where you can "stage" your purchases, fondle yarns, and peruse patterns. It's a very welcoming place! (And the dogs add a very "homey" touch, especially when you're missing your own doggie!)

Too Cute! What could be more perfect than yarn and a couple of dogs! Gotta love these two "Guardians of the Wool"!

Of course, since it's a yarn shop, I did have to make a few purchases.
I was quite excited to see that they carried an assortment of the Misty Mountain Farm hand-dyed wool! Way to go Linda and Leanna! I was trying not to buy much yarn, but I couldn't help myself. They carried the Hyphen Boy patterns - I'd been lusting after a felted backpack my friend Kelly made and had never been able to find the Hyphen Boy patterns anywhere! So.......since they had the pattern, I HAD to buy the Lamb's Pride in Lotus Pink, Supreme Purple, Aztec Turquoise, and Black. I'm soooo excited! (Yeah, I know, just what I need - yet another "Project-in-Waiting". ) It will be gorgeous though - check out these colors!

I had been doing quite well until I found out that they had many yarns on sale at 50% off - Berrocco Suede and some of the cottons (Butterfly) for dishcloths. They also had a "bag sale" on the 1824 Cotton - so I picked up a bag of a dusty blue and a bag of a sage color.......to make a couple of summer tops/tanks. Of course they had many other yarns on sale too....but I did have to limit myself, right?

I also picked up some fabulous new Noni Bag patterns......the patterns had just arrived, so they hadn't even put the price tags on them yet! There's an absolutely adorable "Pig" purse pattern that I just "had to have". I just love it! There were several others that also worked their way into my purchases. There was another one that I wanted that I couldn't get there - the Prism Bag. (The worst thing about that was that there was a Trunk show of the Noni bags there and the Prism Bag was one of the ones on display! The bag was "taunting me"!) I promptly ordered on line from Diva Knitting as soon as got back to my daughter's. (And first thing today, I saw that Cheryl has already mailed it out to me! Diva Knitting has absolutely fantastic customer service and she ships lightning fast!

Oh...oh...oh! There were numerous felted bag and "critter" patterns from Fiber Space that I was dying to get. They didn't seem to have the ones I wanted at any of my local yarn shops and the "on-line" store for Fiber Space STILL isn't up. Never fear! ThreadBear had almost all of the ones I wanted - including the "Lambie" bag! Wahoo! The only ones I couldn't get there were the Seahorse and the Baseball Bag (plus the Around the World bag that I forgot to pick up!).

Friday, I managed to wander over to Rae's Yarn Boutique. It' may be small, but it's very cozy and chock full of all kinds of knitting patterns and yarn. I didn't get to see Rae this time - she's at TNNA and another show. I met her last fall and was hoping to see her again on this trip. The cool thing about the shops in Lansing is that they all carry totally different yarns - so you "have to" visit more than one! Of course, there is some overlap, but the majority of yarns do differ. I "had" to make a few additional purchases at Rae's as well! I picked up some sock yarn, some lace weight mohair (very similar to Kid Silk Haze) and the pink handles that I'll be using for my "Year of the Pig" Noni bag (I still need to get the custom zipper as well as the Tutu Pink Cascade 220!) AND.....much to my delight, they did have the 3 patterns from Fiber Space that I didn't get at ThreadBear! (I felt very lucky too - I purchased their last copy of the felted Sea Horse pattern!)

But, wait! There's more! As if that weren't enough stash enrichment......I then sent off an order to Astrid's Dutch Obsessions for a skein of Kauni yarn! (Four of us placed an order together so we could split the international shipping and make it a bit more economical!). I can't wait to make a Jeanie shawl (like the one shown on Astrid's website. (Jeanie is also the designer of the "Pretty Petals" sock pattern that I love as well!)

AND.....I'd previously mentioned that I really needed to "buckle down" and finish the cotton/wool Sockotta socks that I'd been making. Well, I FINALLY finished the first sock. I still have to "tuck in" the ends, but other than that, it's done. AND I started the second one! All in all, I'd say I've had a very productive two days!