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

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

9 days until Stitches Midwest!

I can't believe there are only 9 more days until Stitches Midwest!  I have come to the realization that I will not be able to get all the yarns spun that I wanted to get done, but I am still spinning as much as I can.  Last night I finished up two more skeins of a new art yarn color.  I'm not sure what I'm going to call this one, but it is spun from merino wool hand dyed by the Yarn Wench and her name for the colorway is "Bewitching Hour."  Here is a fairly poor flash shot taken last night before I set the twist...

Here are some pictures of another art yarn, also spun from Yarn Wench merino wool in her colorway "Imperial Peacock."  I have four skeins of this colorway...

That's it for now...tonight I *finally* start spinning bamboo!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

15 days to Stitches Midwest....

and I'm starting to freak out just a little!  Must really kick the spinning into overdrive!

I don't have any pictures today, only this one of Bug from last week....  (She likes to sleep under the cart I keep next to my spinning wheel.  It holds all the pertinent items I need for spinning.)

but i've been spinning...and prepping more fiber...and figuring out some of the details. 

I want to share more pictures of what I'll have at Stitches but realize taking and editing pictures takes time!  So, not today, but soon I'll set aside a little time to take some pictures of the latest yarns that are ready for Stitches Midwest!

Sunday, July 21, 2013

18 days to Stitches Midwest!

Since I missed posting yesterday, as of today there are 18 days until Stitches Midwest!  I prepped a ton more fiber yesterday - this time, merino wool for art yarns and Polworth wool that will probably be spun into single ply skeins. 

The majority of yarns I will have at Stitches Midwest will be either bamboo single ply skeins, or my FunctionArt Art Yarns.  But, I WILL have some other yarns and today I have pictures of two of these!

First, I will have quite a few skeins of handspun merino wool and tencel blend single ply skeins.  These work great for shawls and scarves and I specifically spin this blend alot because of the sheen the tencel provides.  One of the colors I'll have is dyed by Cloudlover Yarn & Fiber, her colorway "Haunted Vineyard"....

Here is an example of a shawl I knit from yarn I spun from another of her colorways.  This shawl was knit with about 1-1/2 skeins...

Second, I will have a few skeins of handspun two-ply yarns, mostly in superwash merino wool.  Here is one of the colors I'll have...again, a color dyed by Cloudlover Yarn & Fiber...she calls it North by Northwest...but I have called my skeins "Woodland Holiday".....

Now I'm off to spin more art yarns!

Friday, July 19, 2013

20 days until Stitches Midwest...

Hurray for Friday!  But, not so happy that there are only 20 days left until Stitches Midwest!  I have so much spinning to do...

This is the latest art yarn color I'm working on...two skeins done, two to go...

While I was working the other night, I didn't know where Bug was!  Then, I found her under the hutch...here she says, "Stop stalking me with the camera already!"

This weekend I'll be doing some final fiber prep... and then it is nothing but spinning until Stitches!!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

21 days until Stitches Midwest!

As of today there are 21 days until Stitches Midwest...and as I type that I realize...that's only THREE WEEKS!!!  In 3 short weeks it will be here!  I have so much to do before then!?

Today I received two important packages in the mail, both will be necessary at Stitches Midwest, yet they were not fiber....

First, I received my brand new MOO Business Cards (if you click the link through my blog, you'll get a discount on your order!) ...

They have a yarn photo on the front (that I grabbed from my Flickr account) and my usual purple and orange logo, name and information on the back.  I have 50 different variations and a total of 600!?!?  I haven't had that many business cards done up ever...I usually print them myself on card stock and cut them with scissors....these are much nicer, I think.

Second, I received my SQUARE card reader.  I have been accepting credit cards at shows for awhile, but I was doing it the old-fashioned way of using a knucklebuster to take an imprint of the card, and then entering it online AFTER the show.  Well, I guess it's time I join this decade and use the reader that I can just plug right into my phone - I'll be able to swipe cards easily and quickly!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

22 days and counting...

Last night I spun up two skeins of art yarn.  I'm not sure what I'm calling this one yet, probably something related to Spike and Drusilla from Buffy the Vampire Slayer.  Or .... I don't know.  Something.  It is spun from hand dyed merino wool dyed by the Yarn Wench in her colorway "Crashenburn"... shades of fuchsia, red, black, gray, purplish gray and more!

Here it is on the bobbin, before plying with thread:

And here, almost finished, just needs to have the twist set (basically soaking in hot water, rinse in cold, hang to dry!)...

 And where was Bug?  She was under the cart I have next to my wheel...sleeping, of course!

Tonight, I spin up two more skeins of this art yarn colorway, and maybe start on a little prep of another color!

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

23 days until Stitches Midwest....

There are 23 days until Stitches Midwest!  I'm very tired today...I was up until about 1am prepping 10 pounds of bamboo fiber!  Well, I started this on Sunday, but finished 4 more pounds last night...here it all is, ready to spin!  Each pile will become one skein of yarn - approximately 4 ounces each...there are 40 piles here!

And, some close-up shots (colors prepped:  Summer Shades (3 pounds), Coral Tide (1 pound), New Southwest (2 pounds), DragonWing (2 pounds) and Plum Paradise (2 pounds).  (Please excuse the photos, they were taken with a flash after midnight and bamboo really doesn't photograph well with a flash.)

Some may ask, why do you prep the fiber before spinning it, especially if it takes so much time?  That's a good question, but I prep, or "pre-draft" as it's usually called, ALL of my fiber before spinning.  I feel it helps loosen the fibers and makes them easier to spin and also makes it easier to control the thickness of the finished yarn.  Since the bamboo is best spun thin, this prep work is especially important!

What did Bug do while I worked all night?  She hung out in the Fiber Room, since I had taken over her living room floor!

Monday, July 15, 2013

24 days until Stitches Midwest!

As of today, there are 24 days until Stitches Midwest!  What is Stitches MidwestStitches Midwest is a huge, extended weekend event that includes classes, a market and other happenings...all centered around YARN and the things you can do with it!  This year's show takes place from August 8 though August 11, 2013, in Schaumburg, Illinois.

I've wanted to be a vendor at Stitches Midwest for years.  But it is a very expensive and time-consuming show, so it just never worked out....until this year!

A few months ago, Natalie of Cloudlover Yarn & Fiber asked what I thought about doing Stitches Midwest.  For some reason, instead of making excuses as in previous years, I said, "YES!".  It is all thanks to her that I'll be there - she took care of all the administrative work - applying, ordering the things we'll need, and all the stuff that just doesn't happen automatically when you apply for such a huge event.  It is totally awesome that she's letting me share her booth with her!

But, wait, WHAT was I thinking?  This all came about just as I was moving!?  When was I going to have time to SPIN any yarns for this show??   I had to deal with the moving first, but started making plans to get some major spinning done once that was all done....I've been working at it for a month or so, but now I'm really getting down to it....I will have many long days of spinning ahead....

What I plan on doing here on my blog is posting daily updates from now until the show.  Pictures of the process, where I'm at, and of course, NEW yarns that will be available in our booth...oh, wait, how could I not have given our BOOTH NUMBER!!!

Cloudlover Yarn & Fiber and Kitty Grrlz Hand Spun Yarns will be in BOOTH 725!!!!!

So, for my first actual "this is what I'm doing" post...here is a picture of what I started working on yesterday .... prepping pounds and pounds of bamboo fiber for spinning...

Tonight, I will finish and will post a picture tomorrow of what it all looks like when it is "prepped"!

As I was doing that, my cat Bug just lounged around...here she is watching from the bed as I got everything ready....

 And, finally, this isn't the best picture, but here is a preview of the colors in the next art yarn I'll be spinning!

That's my update for today!  Hopefully by doing this it will help keep me on task so that I will have many new yarns to share in BOOTH 725 at Stitches Midwest.

It is very sad that I haven't posted on this blog in so long! Well, I'm resurrecting it starting TODAY!  Look for daily posts from me... starting in just a little bit!