Wednesday, October 26, 2022

Spinning Again


I got behind with yarn orders when I was sewing bags, so now I"m back to my spinning wheel. I have one more order to do and then I must spin some wool for stock. 

Thursday, October 20, 2022



 I've just shown you the end of the project, in practice it has been on the go for many weeks, and I'm glad to have it done! I think I look like a blue bag. There are 80 bags here, I delivered the first ten straight away so that the buyer could check I was on the right path. I hope they all fit the bill. 

Wednesday, October 19, 2022

More About The Dyeing


I've just finished dyeing the fabric for the last set of bags, though I haven't finished sewing some of the other dyed batches. (See previous post for what I'm up to.) It's a milestone anyway.

It helped that all the bags are the same colour, so I could keep reusing the dyepot, adding more salt and dye and sometimes some more water. 

The first batch I dyed was 'interesting'. It turned out that the fabric shrank in one direction but not the other. Luckily I had dyed from the middle of the list of sizes and was able to cut the shrunk bits down to the size for the smallest bag. After that I had to allow for the shrinkage when I cut the fabric. I also had to allow for the fact that when you turn the bag, you lose a little bit of width. So the distance between the side seams needs to be slightly more than the required width. 

With this cotton dye, unlike wool dye, what you see is not what you get. When I put the fabric and cord into the bath, it looked a pale lilac colour. Eek. The temptation is to put more dye powder in. But it's not necessary, because it darkens during the dye process. And then lightens a bit from wet to dry. 

I still have a lot of sewing to do, so I had better go and get on with it. 

Monday, October 17, 2022

Bags, Bags, Bags

 I'm working diligently on a sewing order. I'm making 90 drawstring bags for a lady who makes ornaments in copper and brass, in six different sizes, ranging from 33,5 cm by 17 cm to 7 cm by 6 cm. That sounds simple enough, but there's a catch. I've been given grey fabric and must dye it dark blue. I'm working in batches of ten. Here, for the record, is the process in  pictures:

Wednesday, October 12, 2022

Down And Up


I knitted most of this sock on the return journey on the bus. I was so eager to get to the shadow wrap heel that I made the top of the sock much too short. Hmm. At home (not on the bus!) I unraveled the cast on part of the sock and then knitted upwards, like a toe-up sock. I largely avoid toe-up socks because I worry about the cast off. It needs to be loose enough to get the sock on, without being scruffy. I've used a tubular cast off. I need a bit more practice I think, but it'll have to do. Now to make the second sock match without going through the same process. I'm going to research tubular cast on. 

Monday, October 10, 2022

Travel Knitting


Socks are a good travel project because they're small and easy. I knitted the first sock while on a bus. I'm glad my sock-knitting yarn customer reminded me about the shadow wrap heel just before I left. I decided it would be easier than a conventional heel flap when moving along. 

The stitch used in these socks is called Broken Seed Stitch. It's very clever, looks much more difficult than it is: Round 1, in natural, knit; Round 2 with variegated knit one, purl one; Round 3 with natural, knit: Round 4 with variegated, purl one, knit one. It looks like a slip stitch pattern, but isn't, and I think more flexible than a slip stitch pattern. I've used it before, but had to remind myself how to do it. 

Monday, October 3, 2022

This And That

 The market on Saturday was a bit disappointing. There were too many sellers and not enough buyers. The weather was very hot, which probably didn't encourage people to get out and about. I did sell 10 puppets, so it wasn't altogether a bust, and the stand fees went to a good cause.

My yarn customer sent me these photos of sock one knitted with this batch of yarn. Spectacular! She said in future she's going to knit two socks at a time, because she feels like going on to the next pair before she's finished this one. I told her she's suffering 'second sock syndrome'. Aha, she didn't realise that there's a name for it. 

I'm going away for a few days and not taking the internet with me, so I'll catch up on blogs and blogging next week.