I'm a librarian, spinner, knitter! This is my blog for crafty things, updates to my shop and more.
You can check out my handspun yarns here - Kitty Grrlz Hand Spun Yarns and my hand knit items here - Kitty Grrlz Hand Knits

Friday, May 30, 2008

Best Month Ever! and Big News!

So, I know I've said it before, but I've got to say it again - THANK YOU to all of my wonderful customers!!! Thanks to you all, May has been my best month *ever*!?!?! I am so grateful and appreciate you choosing my yarns for your wonderful projects!

I know I've been a slacker when it comes to the blog, but it's been a busy month! I've spun about 7 pounds of bamboo up in the past couple of weeks, and worked on some custom orders. I've got more bamboo coming any day now, and new art yarns in the planning stages . . . and, of course, some great new custom spins lined up! I hope June will be another great month!

Before I get to my "big news", here are some pictures of a few new things that are now available -

Spike's Moonlight - Batt-tacular! bulky yarn

A smaller skein of FunctionArt yarn -

LoopCoilyPuff/CoilySpun Super Coils Skein! Spun from 4 Loop "babycakes"

And, one more bamboo skein -

Now, for my "news" . . .

Back in January I found out the project I've been working on will be "complete" by the end of June. This basically means that my "day job" is ending. Ever since I found this out, I've been trying to figure out what to do - get another library job, try and find a part-time job, or try and make Kitty Grrlz full time. Well, the way the past few months have gone, it is very very likely that . . . I will be making KITTY GRRLZ my full-time gig!!!! I am so excited, and anxious, but really look forward to being able to devote myself to spinning and knitting full time. The past couple of months have given me hope that I can make it work. I will still be "keeping an eye out" for a good library job, or maybe a part time job, but right now, my "plan" is to make Kitty Grrlz full time through the end of the year.

The prospect of doing this is so scary. But exhilarating. I have flip-flopped on my decision countless times over the past few months, but . . . I think I'm ready to make it official! I will be Kitty Grrlz full-time as of July 1!!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

So, about all of that bamboo . . .

I have spun up about half of the 8 pounds I received last week!! It seems to be all i AM spinning! Here are some shots of the colors still available on etsy:

Ocean Dusk - two skeinsCitrus Dreams - two skeins
Stormy Night - two skeins
Spring Garden - Light - 1 skein

and, finally, New Southwest - 1 skein

So, yeah, I've been busy spinning up all of that bamboo fiber. I have about 3.5 pounds left! I want to spin some of them into two-plys, but will have at least 3 more single ply colors coming soon.

But, soon, I will be doing some more coily spins and art yarn spins! I got these in the mail yesterday:

and they are just calling to me to be spun! They are Spontaneous Spinning Batts from LOOP. It's actually a miracle I was able to snag them! The update was very very late on Friday night and the only reason I was awake for it??? I was spinning bamboo!!!

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Fiber Heaven!

Yesterday I received two amazing packages - a box of approximately *8 pounds* of bamboo fiber for spinning . . . AND, a HUGE envelope packed with LOOP babycakes! Ahhh, heaven! These pictures aren't the best, but just in case you'd like to see what . . .

8 pounds of bamboo:
and, 6 batches of "babycakes":

look like . . . well, now you have! :)

What's a shame, though, is I'd love to dive right in to the babycakes, but will have to wait - the bamboo is what is in need of my attention for the next week . .. or two. My Ravelry ad *should* start running tomorrow, which means I want to have new bamboo listed every day for the next two weeks!? Not sure it will be possible, but . . . we'll see. I've also got a few art yarns I want to spin, and some more batts . . . and . . .

Never enough time!

I do have a couple new yarns to share as well. The first is another "Batt-tacular!" yarn spun from a batt of merino and superwash wools and glitz from TerraBellaSpun. Here is "Blue Copper Night" -

And, the second is "Copper Flash Sky" - a "Novel-Ply" yarn spun from handdyed merino wool and plied with Moda Dea Fur-Ever yarn.

Last night, I spun up a bright aqua and violet FunctionArt art yarn- two skeins from hand dyed merino wool (dyed by the Yarn Wench). I'm thinking one skein is already spoken for, but I should have one available to list later today. Here is a sneak peak -

I do have another batch of this fiber color, so may even spin up two more skeins!

That's all for today!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Violet Moon

Not much to say today, and only one new yarn to show - Violet Moon - a Batt-tacular! yarn spun by me from a carded batt of merino and superwash wools from TerraBellaSpun.

It is now on etsy and also my website.

In other news - I did spun up two yarns last night that should be listed later today. One is a "Novel-Ply" yarn - plied with Moda Dea Fur Ever yarn, and the other is another "Batt-tacular!" yarn spun from another batt from TerraBellaSpun. Tonight I am hoping to spin up a bright aqua/turquoise/purple art yarn, and get some bamboo prepped . . .

speaking of bamboo - I am going to be running a featured yarn ad on Ravelry starting Friday (hopefully). I ordered almost 10 pounds of bamboo to spin up over the next 2 weeks so that I could be listing new bamboo while the ad was running . . . and now . . . I've very worried. I haven't gotten the package yet! According to tracking it seems to be IN Milwaukee . . . just not delivered yet?!?!? But, since it is Priority Mail . . . it just seems odd. So, I am *really* hoping it arrives today . . . if it does, I hope to have some new bamboo daily for the next two weeks!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Spontaneous Spinning Batts - spun!

So, for anyone into fiber/spinning, you may be aware of LOOP - her batts were on the cover of Spin-Off magazine recently, and the demand has definitely increased for her wonderful fiber batts. But, none of them compare to her "Spontaneous Spinning Batts" - from her listing, this is a description of the batts:

"Spontaneous Spinning Batts are lumpy, bumpy, super textured spinning batts inspired by an awesome experience I had at Camp Plucky Fluff! These OOAK batts are an exercise in NOT thinking and letting spontaneity take over. I have so much fun making these batts but you'll have even more fun spinning them! They are carded to intentionally create lumps and bumps in the fiber with loads of color and lots of goodies like glitz, locks, yarn scraps, sari silk, silk noils and even sequins carded in! The result is fabulous texture and automatic randomness in your yarn. As you spin these batts, be spontaneous- let the batts spin themselves. It's so much fun!!!"

They are near impossible to get - when they appear in her shop they are gone in SECONDS! Seriously, I know. But, a few weeks ago I was lucky enough to snag *two* of them! And, both in two of my favorite colors . . . . which also happen to be the colors in my logo - orange and purple!

The first one - Purple Progression. I LOVE purple, so this batt was perfect! And, so fun to spin! It contained Corriedale wool, bamboo, alpaca, silk, and merino with a little sparkle, too. I spun in 6 different purple yarns - 3 light and 3 dark - and then plied with shiny light purple thread. The pictures don't quite do it justice, but here is the finished yarn - Plum Perfect Purple:

The second one, well, is quite opposite! The batt was called "Creamsicle" and has shades of orange, yellow and white in it for just an amazing brightness! The fibers in this one are bamboo, silk, alpaca, wool, and of course glitz. I spun in yellow and orange yarns and plied with a variegated orange/yellow/white thread. The blends of fibers give this one a really interesting texture - mostly soft/smooth but with some bumpy parts from the yarns spun in and the wool. I'm calling this skein, "You Are My Sunshine" :
Alas, these are the only two "SSBs" I've had the luxury to spin, but I did join her "Spontaneous Spinning Club" which means I will be getting one new batt each month! Yay! I've also got some batches of "babycakes" on the way, which will be combined for various types of yarns . . .

While I would love to spin nothing but SSBs and babycakes, I do have other fiber to spin, and recently had the joy of trying out a new fiber seller - FeltStudioUK . I was asked to spin up the "Forest" batts . . . I made sure I got extra fiber so purchased two batt lots - and with the smaller one I spun up this yarn:

This smaller skein IS available as I will be spinning a slightly different skein with the other batch for the custom request.

I spun up yet another batt last night - this one from TerraBellaSpun - and that one should be listed later today. It is pretty shades of purple and blue (with shades in between) and black, plied with three threads to match the lighter colors. It also has a bit of sparkle in it! Since it is mostly merino wool, it turned out as a soft & squishy bulky yarn!

Tonight, I'll be stepping away from the batts for a bit and will be spinning up some merino top hand dyed by the Yarn Wench. Or Bamboo. Or both. We'll see! :)

Monday, May 12, 2008

New yarns from the weekend . . .

So, I didn't get quite as much spun this weekend as I was hoping to as I just wanted to laze around instead! But, I did get a TON of pictures taken for all of the hand knits that I need to add to my Kitty Grrlz Knits shop and also did get some yarns spun.

First, here are a couple shots of the hand knits. I will slowly be adding more shawls, scarves, and wristwarmers throughout the week. I'm editing the pictures slowly as even though I re-did my set-up, I'm still not getting the quality I want - but, for now, this is the best I can do.

Mocha Swirl Hand Knit Scarf - knit with a nylon/tactel yarn (Gedifra India)

Earth Mother Hand Knit Triangle Shawl - knit with Gedifra Poesie yarn (nylon/polyester/microfiber)

Then, there are the yarns! The first ones I have to show are a second round of the "Spring Break" colorway - this is actually the "Hot Tropics" color hand dyed by the Yarn Wench. This was my second batch (the previous two yarns have sold). Even though I thought this was the lighter batch, I actually think it is darker. I spun in a TON of green, purple, and yellow angelina for sparkle in these, along with novelty yarns in green, purple, and yellow. Then, I plied it with purple thread. Here they are:

106 yard skein:
108 yard skein:
The next batch I did was the "Cherry Peacock" colorway, also dyed by the Yarn Wench. This was Falkland wool and I absolutely loved this color and wished I had more! Very difficult to get the true colors, but here is a shot of the one available skein (the other is reserved):

I also spun up this yarn, it was a "test" for a custom spin I am doing. This one has a few colors/yarns in it that won't be in the "final" yarn, which also means this one should be listed and available later today. It was spun from the "Forest" fiber batts from FeltStudioUK.etsy.com I didn't spin in the sequins as they will be used in the second skein. This is a small skein of about 62 yards, with lots of novelty yarns in shades of green and black spun in, and plied with metallic green thread.

I also spun up two Spontaneous Spinning batts from Loop yesterday! I will wait to show those as I'd like to get better pictures. They will both be listed later today, though. One is "Purple Progression" and the other is "Creamsicle" (though my yarn names will probably be different. They were great to spin - lots of different fibers like wools, bamboo, alpaca, silk, and more! Look for pictures of them tomorrow!

Friday, May 9, 2008

A few new things . . . .

So, I guess I've been a slacker this week in posting. I've just been so tired and haven't had much to say . . . . of course, I always have pictures to share, though, so today I thought I'd get caught up on some of the newest yarns I have . . .

First, I have the "LoopCoilyPuff" yarns that I showed on Tuesday - these are spun from Babycakes from Loop - small mini batts of fibery goodness! These three were spun from various "cakes" and then plied with thread with coils, beehives, and puffs of fiber throughout!

Choco-Plum - spun from 2 brown and 1 purple - 42 yards, 1.6 oz

Pink-Plum - spun from 2 pink and 2 purple - 62 yards, 2.2 oz

Ocean Waves - spun from 4 blue/green - 72 yards, 3.3 oz

I also spun up my first Loop Spontaneous Spinning Batt! This is the one called "Seascape". It is mostly bamboo, with some alpaca, merino/tencel, Corriedale, and a bit of glitz, spun into a thicker DK weight single ply yarn. I'm calling it "Mint Julep".

I've been spinning some art yarns - but I believe they are already spoken for, but if not they will be listed later today. I've got -

Cotton Candy Petals

Cotton Candy Clouds

and Divine Melon 4

I'll be spinning some more art yarns this weekend, and probably some more Batt spins, too. I've got about 10 pounds of bamboo coming soon, so want to get some art yarns and batt-tacular yarns done before it arrives! I'm just looking forward to the weekend so that maybe I can finally catch up on my sleep . . .

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Mad-Town Rocks! (and Plum Grove)

So, my show this past weekend was actually really good!! It was at a mall in Madison, and can I just say - Madison rocks! There are definitely a lot of knitters there so instead of selling mostly hand knits (which is what I *thought* would sell) - I sold yarn!! I always prefer when the yarn sells, since I really do enjoy spinning more than knitting right now. That's not to say I don't like knitting - it's just right now I'd rather be spinning. Honestly, there isn't much I would RATHER do than spin . . .

At the show, which WAS long - 11 hours on Saturday and 7 hours on Sunday and that was just the "open" hours - I was there early both days! - I got A LOT of spinning done! Yay! Since I hadn't spun much in the days leading up to the show, it was actually really great to just sit and spin all day. Here are the yarns that I finished:

Plum Grove - Navajo 3-ply in Merino Wool/Silk blend. This fiber is an 80% merino/20% silk blend hand dyed by the Yarn Wench as a special request. (You know I can't seem to get enough of this colorway!). I spun one batch into this Navajo 3-ply skein, 200 yards total of thinner worsted weight:
With the other batch of merino/silk, I spun a thin strand, that I used in a different yarn (I'll show that one in just a second) but had a bit left over to make this smaller 80 yard skein:

The other yarn I spun was the bulky 2-plys I like to do - spun from one thick/thin strand of merino wool, and then plied with the thinner strand of merino/silk. I also ended up with one large and one small skein. Here is the large, 136 yards, 4.3 oz!

And, the Mini Skein of 46 yards:
This week I plan on spinning up some art yarns, but first I just *had* to spin some of the "Babycakes" I got from LOOP last week! First, I selected some that I thought would work well together (since they are small little "mini-batts" of fiber, I wanted to combine them for a longer yarn) . . . here is a shot of the ones I chose:
Each row was spun into a separate yarn, in my "Rocky Roads" style - plied with thread with coils along the way! I finished quite late last night so was only able to take some shots of the yarn (before setting the twist) in my crappy night lighting - but here is one (I'll have better ones later today!)

They are VERY textured and sparkly! They'll be listed on etsy and my website later today!

That's all for today!

Friday, May 2, 2008

Artistic Accessories in Madison this weekend!

This weekend I will be at the Hilldale Mall in Madison, Wisconsin for the "Artistic Accessories" show! I will have lots of hand knit shawls, light scarves, wristwarmers, and more! Hours are basically mall hours - Saturday 10am-9pm and Sunday 10am-6pm. If you are in the area, come on by for great Mother's Day gift shopping, or to find something special for yourself!

And, since I can't possibly have a post without yarn pictures - here are some new yarns!

First, the Divine Melon skeins ARE available!

And, some single ply yarns spun from batts of wonderful fiber!

That's it for me! While I will be spinning over the weekend at the show I won't have anything new posted until next week - lots of art yarns coming and more!