Have Ewe Any Wool?

Monday, April 30, 2012

Project Progress – Big and Small

sweater_backsweater_frontI’ve completed a few projects…and made some great head way on the larger one, my “Dark and Stormy” cardigan.   I don’t think it will be finished by the end of the month to meet my Nerd Wars dissertation deadline, but I’ve made it to the halfway point – wahoo!  The front of the sweater is on the left……the back is  on the right.   I’m ready to do the bottom ribbing as well as the button bands.   Then, all that’s left to do are the sleeves!

Earlier this month, I finished spinning the gorgeous green yarn in the the “Green Mile” color way.  I finally have it off the bobbins….it’s gorgeous!   I love the sheen.  The fiber is corriedale – it has a beautiful sheen.   Carola (the dye mistress) did a fabulous job…the depth and complexity of the color is fabulous!  I’m calling it, “Midsummer Night’s Dream”.












I completed an amulet bag as part of an exchange.   It incorporated both beads and wool yarn.   I’m hiding some goodies inside for my swap partner….I hope she likes it!




socks_finished_2 My “Night Sky” socks are FINALLY finished!   I started these way back in March….and it took me to the end of April to finish them.   Of course, they’re in one of my favorite colors….purple!   The weather is getting a bit warmer, so I think I’ll have to wait until the fall to try these out!

Sunday, April 29, 2012

The Elegant Mess….aka Playing with Paper & Paint

Fred Mullett was the guest teacher for the class titled, “The Elegant  Mess” at Angela’s Happy Stamper.   The class used masks and stencils to create very interesting cards.  

prepped_paperWe splattered H2O’s onto rice paper and then pressed various objects and stencils into the same page until it was full of colors and shapes.   We also spattered and "printed” using household objects and found object onto some water color paper.   These all became the “canvas”.



Next steps, we cut out shapes and frames and began to play and explore how the various colors would play with each other and started building our own cards.   We also cut out shapes using stencils….and decided whether to use the positive space or the negative space.




I completed 3 cards in class – two with just the painted paper as the adornment, and one with a stencil overlay on top of the painted paper.   It was a lot of fun….and as you can see, I have lots of papers left over for creating even more cards!  




(If I complete a fourth card, I’ll probably use the “frame” above with the urn centered inside.   I’ll probably use a solid colored background.)

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Yarn Crawl

Wahoo!   My knitting guild, the Purls of Distinction, had a wonderful field trip today – a yarn crawl to two relatively local yarn stores:  The Red Thread in Warrenton and Dog House Yarns in Culpeper.


First stop…The Red Thread.   Check out the yarn bombing right outside their front door!





Inside, we were greeted by our fabulous hostesses – they were very welcoming and we felt immediately right at home.



The inside of the shop was very welcoming and full of gorgeous yarns.  On the back wall was a Chinese Proverb….related to the naming of the shop.





In a corner near the window was a cute little “knitting bear”.   There were many cute displays throughout the shop.  They not only carried yarn and various knitting accessories, but also a variety of ceramic knitting bowls all done by a local artist. 




The shop also boasted a very nice seating area with plenty of room to spread out and relax, share knitting “finds”, or to just relax and knit.

 purls_red_thread_relaxing_3       purls_red_thread_relaxing_4













As you can see by our smiling faces, we all had a fabulous time and bought lots of luscious yarn!   As a bonus, across the street was a quilt shop…and just on the other side of the shop, the farmer’s market was in full swing!


Next stop was at Mojitos and Tapas for some Cuban food.   It’s a favorite restaurant of mine, but I think we overwhelmed them with our group.   The service was quite slow, but the food was still wonderful!   The Cuban sandwich is absolutely delicious!   (I think the waitress was new as well…which didn’t help when you have a large party.)  DH and I always stop in whenever we’re in Warrenton.   They also have wonderful black bean soup as well as homemade Sangria.   Mmmmmm!!!!!



After lunch, we headed on down the road to Dog House Yarns in Culpeper.   My friend Elizabeth met us there, so our group expanded by one!  It was great seeing her again….she lives in Culpeper,quite close to the shop!   (Normally, she treks up to Northern VA to attend one of a number of local knitting groups and guilds, so slipping out to Dog House Yarns to meet up with us was a very easy trip for her!)


purls_dog_house_4 The owner of the shop was away on a retreat, but her DH had stayed behind to manage the shop (he can be seen in the back behind the counter).   He was an absolute hoot and we all had a fabulous time.   He was quite the enabler as well!   Not only did he help when asked, but he was quick to point out some one-of-a-kind yarns hand dyed by local artisans.   (He also quickly picked up on our favorites as far as colors and types of yarn…and made sure we were able to locate them!)

purls_dog_house_5 This shop had a warm cozy feel as well.   The seating area wasn’purls_dog_house_2t quite as big as that of the Red Thread, but it was just as cozy…and you were again surrounded by not only yarn and accessories, but some fabulous ceramics as well – tea mugs, yarn bowls, and lots of other goodies.   You can see some of the goodies in the front window…just to the right of Lisa.

purls_dog_house_3 This wall was primarily wool.   They even had Shepherd’s Wool – a personal favorite of mine.   In fact, they had the largest variety of colors that I’ve ever seen in one place!   I was in heaven!   They even had some of the sport or DK size as well…I can’t remember which – I always gravitate to the worsted weight of that particular yarn.      

I fell in love with one of the shop samples, but I have no idea what the pattern is, who wrote the pattern, etc.   It’s just gorgeous.   This was made by one of their customers out of silk (mmmmm), but the shop owner’s husband had no idea what pattern it was.   Hopefully someone can help me identify it – it’s quite lovely.   

Any ideas on what the name of pattern is?  Or who might have designed it?

purls_dog_house_sample      purls_dog_house_sample_best


Once again, we all had a fabulous time and came away with lots of lovely yarns.  

Then, we were off again…heading home, but with a short stop on the way.   I swear that Pamela knows all the ice cream places in VA.  On Rt. 29 near Remington, there’s a fabulous ice cream stand that features ice cream made from the milk from local cows - “Moo Thru”.   How cool is that?   It was fabulous too!   The portions are HUGE and the prices are very reasonable.   Definitely a “must stop” when you’re in the area. 

 purls_moo_through_3 purlse_moo_through_2


Thursday, April 19, 2012


Since there was a post dedicated to a sunrise this past weekend, I needed to give equal time to a sunset.   These photos are in the order that I took them.  They were all taken from the time I left the restaurant on Saturday evening until I arrived back at The Maples.   I was amazed at the effect the differences in light and ambient light had on the sunset pictures!


The first two shots (above) were from right outside the restaurant.  The next two were a short walk away...I was amazed that it brought the pink near the bridge and on the horizon seemed to "rise" - the sun's rays were reflecting upwards.



I was amazed at how bright these photos were....the actual sunset was a bit to the right...and this was the view straight across the water.   In the photo on the right, you can see the bridge - the actual sun was just a bit to the right of that.


 Two views of the same basic scene.   The more distant one took in mor ambient light - the one on the right was zoomed a bit and as a result, was much darker.   I love the tree silouetted against the water and the sunset.   (Three of these photos are the same basic scene..but I love the differences when I have them in landscape vs. portrait...or even the near vs. distant views. )


The two photos above are personal favorites.   I love the deep colors in the sky...and I really love the silouettes of the birds on the shore.   If you double click on the photo on the above right, the bird's eye is white making it look like a flat wooden decoration with a cut-out for an eye rather than a living bird.    I love that effect!


The sun's final burst of light...just before sinking below the horizon. (Once again, the photos above are the same shot...but the one on the right is zoomed in and takes in less ambient light...making it a bit darker.)

Wednesday, April 18, 2012


The sunrise over the water last weekend was so incredibly beautiful, that I've decided to dedicate an entire post to it.   There's just something about a sunrise on the water...




What a beautiful morning!