Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Wednesday on the Wheel: Spin me a rainbow!

I have been a fan of Moonrover batts for a while now. Her handspun is -amazing- and her color sense and prep and fibers for her mystery batts and batt clubs are outstanding. Love, love love her.

So it's no surprise that I jumped on her Rainbow SAL. These batts jumped on my spindle pretty much the instant I opened the package. I have, as you can see, already gone through a rolag and a half. I'm thinking that I may, for once, spin this into a two ply. Meaning, when I've finished the other half, I'll wind off, spin the other two rolags, and then ply them together from a plying ball. I'll probably get more yardage that way and I ...kind of want to do a tam with this yarn. We'll see.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Make It Monday: M is for Mitts!

It's Monday. Do you know where your blog post is?

Hello, hello. Been a quiet blog recently, for lack of exciting things to share with you, but check it out: I actually have new stuff!

After many months (seriously, too many. I'm so slow!) working through many projects, I have finally completed a pair of mitts. Just in time for the cool weather to show up, so, you know, go my timing!

These are the Merletto Mitts by Jody McKinley, and despite some bobbles in the pattern itself (the top ribbing is a little off) they are a great deal of fun to knit. The yarn is my handspun from some Fat Cat Knits merino in the Vanilla Caramel colorway. I had about 200 yards and didn't use it  all -- maybe 150 or so? More proof that I am a tight knitter. Anyway, done on US 2/2.75 mm dpns from Knit Picks in the harmony wood.

They are not yet washed or blocked, as shown by the fact that the ends are not woven in, but they're done!

Progress is good!

And I'm hoping to have some spinning to show you all on Wednesday. My spindles have been spinning like mad.

Until then!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Make It Monday: Wet weather, Dry hands

Episode Seventeen is here and available for downloading now!

The best laid plans of mice and men or something. It's here and that's the important part. Apologies for the Monday release instead of Sunday, but hey, look, show notes! :)

And a contest! Want to enter for a bump of fiber or a skein of yarn? Leave a comment on the blog or come over to my Ravelry group and tell me about your favorite fiber festival or one you really want to go to! I will draw winners at the end of the month.

And, as always, thanks for stopping by.

Progress shots:

Clue 3 of the <a href="">In Dreams</a> Mystery Shawl by Susan Pandorf. Not a great picture, but the shawl is already big enough that pinning it out for glamour shots is tricky. Still, here you go!

Enabling that I mentioned:

Lavishea -- Soy and shea butter lotion bars, specifically formulated to absorb into the skin quickly so knitters/crocheters/spinners, etc. can use them.

ColorKnits eMag for PC -- The eMag for the PC.

ColorKnits eMag for Mac -- And the Mac version. Yay!

Wire Stranding Guide -- at KnitPicks, as shown in the eMag. There is a plastic version, too.

Double Yarn Keeper from Chic-a.

Kieran Foley's Stranded Patterns as talked about in the eMag.

All That Other Stuff:

Henry VI, Part II -- Here it is, your link to Henry VI, Part II. Read on!

How to Contact me:

iTunes: Slinging Color
Ravelry: creaturecomfort
Ravelry Group: Creature Comfort Craftwork Fans
Etsy: Creature Comfort Craftworks on Etsy
Email: sarah.hawke [at]
Twitter: creaturecmfts
Facebook: Facebook
Google+: Google+

Talk to you next week!

Monday, October 3, 2011

Make It Monday: Fiber Festivals make me happy!

Happy first Monday of October, everyone! Yes, it's October. Fall is officially here, despite the lingering heat around us. Halloween is coming, which means the other holidays which shall Not Yet Be Named are coming up fast, too.

How was your weekend? Did you get out and do anything fun? For those of you who follow my Twitter or my podcast or peek in to my Ravelry group, you know that my weekend was spent at Lambtown, in Dixon, California. This was my first ever "real and official" stint as a vendor at a fiber-focused event, and I had a blast! I got to talk to a ton of people, got to show off a little bit of what I can do with my color sense, and just enjoyed the day.

Once it got started, anyway. I got up very early Saturday (after being up late on Friday, of course) to finish packing the car and get down to the fairgrounds. I had -no- idea where I was supposed to go and finding my booth spot was really not easy. Got that done, though, and started schlepping things from the car to my spot, only to discover that I was directly in front of a tree and that my neighbors had set up earlier and my space was therefore a leetle tight.

Note to self: set up the day before next year.

My neighbors were very friendly, though, and moved a little and I got the canopy up and got things ready for display. The Engineer joined me a little later and we settled in to see what was what. I did -not- have time to finish my sign, so that was disappointing. He brought me the piece of it that I forgot at home, but by then I'd run out of sticky things to attach it with sign. Thank you, thank you to everyone who wandered into the unmarked booth anyway. :) I learned some things about what it should and shouldn't look like, what I need to improve, etc. but for a first time, I'm pretty pleased.

For those who weren't there, this is what the booth looked like before it was fully dressed up. Not that I added a whole lot more.

I will definitely be back next year! I will have an even better set up and more stuff (and a sign!) and now that I've gotten a taste of how real festivals work, I want to do more more more.

So tell me about your festival going experiences! Which are your favorites? Which would you recommend? Which do you really want to attend, but haven't gotten to yet?

Here's a pot-sweetener: Everyone who participates in this discussion will be entered in a drawing to win a 4-oz bump of merino/bamboo fiber or merino/silk yarn from me in my new Halloween-y colorway, Spooky!
So come and talk!

P.S. (If you're here because you got a business card from me at Lambtown, welcome welcome! Yes, you're eligible for the drawing too! :)

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Wednesday on the Wheel: The Not-on-the-Wheel edition

Does it help if the yarns in this project were spun on the wheel? No, wait. Spindle. Yep, both of these yarns were spun on the spindle. Still on the wheel, so it counts, say I! So I mentioned this project in the podcast (for which I have still not done shownotes, mea culpa), and it's been in the works a while. Now, finally, four months later *cough* I have a finished armwarmer. Yes, just one, and one more to make, but, 50% is good progress!
These are (will be) the Lovisa Armwarmers by Sarah Pope. The white is handspun cormo, the blue-green is merino. This armwarmer has not been washed, blocked, or had ends woven in, and obviously there is no button. But! 50%!

Monday, September 26, 2011

Make It Monday: It's a new podcast episode: So Much To Do!

Episode 16 is here and ready for downloading. I will add show notes and the picture of my half-completed armwarmers in the morning. Still running behind, guys, but I'm catching up!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Shame on me.

I have been a -very- bad blogger and not posted in a long time. I loved my MWF schedule, but I have this thing where, if I fall out of a habit, it's -tough- for me to get back into it. I try, but it's really hard.

I could blame it on being a Pisces. I could blame it on my magpie tendencies. It's a combination of both I suspect. I've always had trouble finishing things because I get distracted by what's new and shiny.

At any rate, I have a shop update coming this afternoon. I should have a podcast Sunday, and then I will make a -valiant- attempt at picking up my posting again.

No promises, but I'll try.

You guys are the best.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Speaking out on Sunday: We're baaa-aaack!

Episode Fifteen is here and available for downloading now!

Super short and just a little updating on my knitting and spinning progress, but we're back, baby! The podcast has returned!

The big news is that I'm doing an honest to goodness fiber festival. I will be at Lambtown on October 1, 2011, from 9am to 5pm. If you're local or otherwise going to be in attendance, come by and say hello! I'll be in booth 90.

And that's it. I'm a little rusty. Got to ease back into these sort of things, you know?

As always, thanks for stopping by.

How to Contact me:

iTunes: Slinging Color
Ravelry: creaturecomfort
Ravelry Group: Creature Comfort Craftwork Fans
Etsy: Creature Comfort Craftworks on Etsy
Email: sarah.hawke [at]
Twitter: creaturecmfts
Facebook: Facebook
Plurk: Plurk

Talk to you next week!

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Wednesday on the Wheel: Life signs.

Hey. How you doing?

It's me. I'm back, and not dead. Don't listen to the rumors. They're mean and vicious.


So it's been a while since I posted, for which I truly apologize. I got overwhelmed by several things and then I caught a late summer headcold and ...well, let's just say I'll be coughing for a while.

But I'm alive and kicking and back to show you stuff.

As you may recall, I've been raving about spindles. Yep, still on the spindle kick though I actually thought about hopping on the wheel today. Shocking, I know.

But since I'm still spindling away, and I have a baby I have not shared with you before, let's get to it!

This is my brand spanking new Russian spindle from Lisa Chan of Gripping Yarn. It is hand turned from brown ebony and it's gorgeous! Frustrating as all heck to learn to use, mind you. This does not work like suspended spinning, and I'm back to feeling all thumbs. That said, it's fun, and I'll be happy once I get the jist of it, I'm sure.

The fiber is some bfl/tussah from FatCat Knits, from one of her last Mixed Blessings clubs. (She's starting a new one, btw. You should check it out.)

And, just so my Aegean doesn't feel neglected, here's some more fun-to-wind cop for you. The color is not really accurate -- it's lighter and greener -- but as close as I could get.

This is the same fiber, Bee Mice Elf merino/tencel, Slice of Life. It's just further down the color progression.

I plan to be back on Friday with fibah! Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Wednesday on the Wheel: How do they do that?

I, sadly, have nothing to show you on either wheel or spindle today. Though I have been spinning away on my Jenkins spindle, it doesn't really look all that different from the last picture I showed you, and I wouldn't want you to be bored, would I?

So instead, I'm going to share a few videos that have been linked in the Southern Cross Fibre group on Ravelry to help us get ready and up to speed on this support spindling SAL.

If you already know how Tibetan and Russian spindling works, well. You don't need to watch. It's certainly not a rule.

But if, like me, you're still trying to get the hang of this stuff? Sit back and enjoy!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Make It Monday: The podcast is finally here!

Episode Fourteen is here and available for downloading now!

It's a day late, but hopefully only a couple of cents short. I'd hate to cheat you out of a whole dollar, after all. :)

I have questions for you this week. I'm primarily curious as to whether you have a priority knitting system for your WIPs. Do you keep to a strict schedule? Or are you like me, sort of working through projects at your own pace and getting things finished when they're finished, instead of in a rush?

Also, have you noticed how many new colorwork patterns and projects are out there in the world? Is it not nifty? I'm very excited!

Check out the links below, come say hi on the Ravelry group, swing by next week...

And, as always, thanks for stopping by.

Enabling that I mentioned:

The WestKnits Mystery KAL: Earth and Sky is still going on. We're on clue three now, which is a big chunk of knitting, but people are still diving in. Grab your yarn and join us!

My Aegean Turkish spindle from Jenkins Woodworking arrived and I have been having a blast with it. I'm still waiting for my Gripping Yarn Russian, but it's coming soon.

Probably just in time to get involved in the Supported Spindling SAL with David and the rest of the Southern Cross Fibre fans on Ravelry. Check out his group if you want to join in or even just to watch. I think it's going to be a lot of fun.

All That Other Stuff:

Henry VI, Part II -- Here it is, your link to Henry VI, Part II. Read on!

How to Contact me:

iTunes: Slinging Color
Ravelry: creaturecomfort
Ravelry Group: Creature Comfort Craftwork Fans
Etsy: Creature Comfort Craftworks on Etsy
Email: sarah.hawke [at]
Twitter: creaturecmfts
Facebook: Facebook
Plurk: Plurk

Talk to you next week!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Not so much speaking out today.

I got a late start on the day today, so it's going to be a Monday-podcast sort of week.

To make up for it, though, I have an all-yarn update for the shop, including my Phat Fiber contribution, Krishna's Got a Bollywood Babe!

Which is a self-striping sw merino/nylon and glittering gold stellina sock yarn. Tricky to dye, but I love the result.

And the race to 100 sales continues apace!

See you tomorrow.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Wednesday on the Wheel: New on the...wait, new spindle!

Have I mentioned that the spindling bug has me in its ferocious grip again?

I thought so.

Have I mentioned that it's so intense that I've even branched out into new spindle types? No? Shame on me.

This is my new Aegean spindle from Jenkins Woodworking. It is pear wood and it's got runes for Joy, Earth and (the visible one) Chalice. And it's lovely. And a blast to spin on.

Mostly because you get to make such -cool- patterns with the cop. ;)

I'm spinning Bee Mice Elf merino/tencel in the Slice of Life colorway. Some day, this will get old. Not today.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Speaking out on Sunday: Winners announced!

Episode Thirteen is here and available for downloading now!

It's a middling length episode this week, and though I continue to babble by invitation, I think (I hope!) that I managed to do it without apologizing this week. If one snuck through that I didn't catch, feel free to tease me about it. I can take it. I'm a big girl. :)

I opened up the episode by talking about a fund-raiser I forgot to mention last week but snuck into the show notes. Please go and check out Lynn Zimmerman's blog for all the information on her team, the Denver Oyster and all of the fabulous prizes you could win. Just $5 gets you a copy of Laura Linneman's (LaLa of the Knit Girllls) My Wish pattern and it only gets better from there.

This week's goalpost picture is clue one of the Spring Mystery Shawl (now called Beaded Elegance) by Renee Leverington.

And, as always, thanks for stopping by.

Enabling that I mentioned:

WestKnits Mystery KAL: Earth and Sky - It's not to late to join in! Clue 2 will be out any second now, but clue one was quick and easy and you won't have to do a lot of catching up. Join in!

Renee Leverington, she of the mystery shawls that I talk about so often, has a couple new shawl patterns taking signups now. Mystery Shawl #24 starts on August 20th and the Fall Mystery Shawl starts on September 24th.

In case you're curious about the spindles I've ordered, you can find out about the Aegean Turkins here, at Jenkins Woodworking and the Russian spindle here at Gripping Yarn. I haven't ordered from Threads Thru Time, but I am sorely tempted. It's only a matter of time, I think.

All That Other Stuff:

aHenry VI, Part II -- Here it is, your link to Henry VI, Part II. Read on!

How to Contact me:

iTunes: Slinging Color
Ravelry: creaturecomfort
Ravelry Group: Creature Comfort Craftwork Fans
Etsy: Creature Comfort Craftworks on Etsy
Email: sarah.hawke [at]
Twitter: creaturecmfts
Facebook: Facebook
Plurk: Plurk

Talk to you next week!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Wednesday on the Wheel: The wheels on the bus go ... really slow.

Now that Tour de Fleece is over, my spinning mojo is slowing down a bit. It was still rekindled by the event, and I'm still spinning more than I was in weeks prior, but I am no longer spinning at every opportunity. Which is a good thing for my fingers, I tell you. I was starting to get calluses.

When I do spin, though, I'm still using spindles. I've actually orders a couple new types of spindles to try out and feed my ongoing addiction. When they arrive, be sure that I will share.

For now, I'll show you an older picture of the fiber I'm still working on. This is a full 4 ounce bundle of fiber from Into The Whirled in the Starcrossed colorway from a SAL last summer. I swore I wouldn't do full bumps of fiber on the spindle anymore, but I don't know. This fiber insisted.

One of my fsvorite homemade spindles, too. Enjoy!

ITWSAL-MayJune10 by beadskinz
ITWSAL-MayJune10, a photo by beadskinz on Flickr.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Make It Monday: Hey look, a sock!

Since I got the podcast up on time like I was supposed to ('scuse me while I pat myself on the back), I can actually use Make It Monday as it was intended: to show you stuff I made! Or am making! Or might one day think about making. Wait, no, let's not go there. The pictures would never end.

So just one this week. This is the first half of the Traditional Gansey Socks by Wendy Johnson, knit in Three Irish Girls Adorn, in the Smoke and Mirrors colorway. Originally destined for The Engineer, he decided he didn't want them, so now? They're mine mine mine!

Not washed or blocked, but test worn and very comfy. The second sock is already in progress.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Speaking out on Sunday: Knitting Along

Week Twelve is here and available for downloading now!

This week, you get a relatively short, fairly rambling episode. It's one of those days, you know? Sometimes, you have brilliant insight to share with the knitting world, and other days (like today!), you're just sort of boringly, Thanks to all of you who put up with me being me. :)

A couple of things this week, though. One, hey look, a podcast that's released on time. A little early, even! Don't faint. And second, show notes, from the moment the podcast goes up. Yep, that's right. This is me, trying to be a little more on the ball. Let's hope it sticks.

I'm talking about knit-alongs, more Shakespeare, and my project updates this week. For the curious, I will do the contest prize drawing announcement in next week's episode. Come back and find out whether you've won!

And, as always, thanks for stopping by.

Enabling that I mentioned:

WestKnits Mystery KAL: Earth and Sky - want to join in on the knit-along? The pattern is here! Come on, join us! It'll be fun. :)

Dripping Fiber Studios - Kim is still at it with her amazing batts. I finished up a yarn from one of the Game of Thrones batts this week. She's moved on to True Blood inspirations, but they're still amazing. Go check her out.

The finished yarn:

Into The Whirled -- Cris at Into the Whirled continually and consistantly comes up with fantastic color. I couldn't resist picking up more of her fiber to feed my spinning obsession. Make sure you check out her Ravelry group to get in on her fiber club and inspiration contests, too!

All That Other Stuff:

Lynn Zimmerman -- Though I failed to mention it in the episode, check out Lynn's blog and think about donating to her team for the Denver Oyster, an Amazing-Race-esque triathalon happening in August. A $5 donation to the Make-A-Wish foundation gets you a copy of Laura Linneman's (LaLa of the Knit Girllls) My Wish pattern and 10$ gets you an entry in the raffle for a huge list of other amazing prizes.

Henry VI, Part II -- Here it is, your link to Henry VI, Part II. Read on!

How to Contact me:

iTunes: Slinging Color
Ravelry: creaturecomfort
Ravelry Group: Creature Comfort Craftwork Fans
Etsy: Creature Comfort Craftworks on Etsy
Email: sarah.hawke [at]
Twitter: creaturecmfts
Facebook: Facebook
Plurk: Plurk

Talk to you next week!

Saturday, July 30, 2011

A post on Saturday? What?

It's Saturday, and I'm posting. I know, what? How did that happen?

Well, it happened because I meant to post yesterday and I forgot. Yep. Classic case of space headedness.

At any rate, there was another weekly shop update yesterday. These are my new additions:

Friday Update: 7/29/11

And! I'm eight sales away from 100! If you're one of the next eight shoppers, I'll enter you into a drawing for 20% off your next purchase. Pretty sweet, right?

Come check it out!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Wednesday on the Wheel: All that's fit to spin.

Or everything spun during TdF that's fit to show you, anyway.

Last week I showed you the first yarn I finished during Tour de Fleece. Now I'm showing you everything else.

These are all mini skeins from sample fiber. The largest (the blue-green awesome) is only 85 yards. The rest are more like 20.

But they kept my spindles (and me!) happy, so that's what counts.

Maybe next week I'll have something more substantial.


Monday, July 25, 2011

Make It Monday: Wants and Haves

I was going to actually post a make-it picture today, because I have half a pair of socks finished! That's what I wanted to do, because I assumed that I'd actually have the podcast up yesterday.

And then the gremlins got in to my equipment and, well. What I *actually* have is a new podcast, today.

It's here, all ready for downloading. I will get the show notes up later today, perhaps. It's due to be a busy day in the SSIC household.

What's that saying about the road to hell? Right. Good intentions. I have them! :)

Friday, July 22, 2011

Fiber Friday: This is kinda what I do.

So I try not to simply pimp myself or my shop in blog posts or my podcast, because I figure, hey, you all are smart people. I have made occasional mention and I have linked and there are ways to get to where I am, so if you wanted to, you would be there.

And mostly, I leave it at that.

But then I have this here Fiber Friday thing, and I did a -lot- of dyeing (for me) this week, and it -is- my blog. Soooo...

Fiber Friday may become my weekly 'new and shiny in my shop' post. I hope no one's terribly offended. This stuff takes work, though, and the more people that look at it, the happier I am. No reason to be coy about that.

So here's most of what I dyed this week. It's all over there *points* in my Etsy shop.

And my TdF sale is still on until Sunday. 15% off with the FILLMEUP code.

Happy Friday!

Update - 7/22/2011

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Wednesday on the Wheel: A finished yarn!

The thing that kills me about Tour de Fleece each year is not the spinning every day. I can do that, handily. It's the taking pictures. That's where I bogged down last year, and it's where I've fallen down again this year. Feh. I am so very glad I never wanted to be a photojournalist or photographer.

I do have pictures today, though, because hey, that's the point of Wednesday on the Wheel, right? But before that...

I realized that I forgot to put a link in last week's show notes to Lori's podcast, Happycrafter207. Apologies, Lori! Those of you who are not Lori, go check her out!

And now, the pictures.

This is what I have on my multitudinous spindles, still in various stages of progress. The blue on the end is being chain plied, and the two teeny balls are waiting for their turn.

And then I washed, whacked and dried the Old Sheep yarn that I've been working on for approximately ever. These three little skeins are not at all the same weight. The two on the left are, combined, about 110 yards of worsted weight yarn. The one on the right is about 160 yards of light fingering to laceweight. Oh, the joys of spinning one fiber for more than a year.

Still, progress is progress. And I get to add the yardage to my Stash Dash totals, so I can't complain.


Monday, July 18, 2011

Make It Monday: Making a habit of this...

(See, told you I'd get the show notes up!)

Week Ten is here and available for downloading now!

At least, it's available after a brief issue with iTunes refusing to recognize that I'd added a new episode at all. Fixed now! Apologies if you went looking for it before I caught that. I can, sometimes, be a little dim.

Still trying to decide when I'm going to set the actual official I-will-make-this-every-week podcast day. It may not happen. We may be looking at a perpetual future of either Sunday or Monday. In the grand scheme of things, there are much larger problems in the world. Still, I'll try to nail it down.

A short episode this week, but still plenty of time to cover what little knitting I did, the spinning that is still eating my brain, and my surprise marketplace outing.

Oh yes, and that Shakespeare thing. :)

As always, thanks for stopping by!

Enabling that I mentioned:

Old Sheep - Isn't it funny the difference a few months of spinning can make? Wildly different WPI on the yarn I got from this fiber over time. It's all pretty.

Greenwood Fiberworks -- Where you can pick up a sampler box and experience excellent fiber prep and addicting color, first hand.

The Dizzy Dragonfly -- Creator of my mini nebula roving. So much fun to spin!

Wooliebullie -- She who uses holographic sparkle in her batts. Very cool stuff.

Wild Hair Fiber -- A fellow Phat Fiber contributor.

Distant Star Alpacas - And another, from lands to the far north.

All That Other Stuff:

Midtown Bazaar -- the market in midtown Sacramento, there every Saturday, where you can sometimes catch me life and in person!

Babetta's Yarn and Gifts -- my LYS of choice. I butchered her shop name in the podcast, but I'm making up for it here. Babetta is awesome, my knitting group is a ton of fun, and if you're local, you should definitely stop by.

How to Contact me:

iTunes: Slinging Color
Ravelry: creaturecomfort
Ravelry Group: Creature Comfort Craftwork Fans
Etsy: Creature Comfort Craftworks on Etsy
Email: sarah.hawke [at]
Twitter: creaturecmfts
Facebook: Facebook
Plurk: Plurk

Talk to you next week!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Fiber Friday: The CCC show!

That's right, ladies and gents. Guess where yours truly will be (again) tomorrow?

...okay, technically not there, because that is from last Sunday at the Oakland Fiber and Textiles Festival, but I will be in a similar location. I am packing up my goods and going to spend the day once again at the Midtown Bazaar in midtown Sacramento. The event is open from noon to 5pm and I'll be there the whole time, with my wheel and some learn to spin kits and fiber and yarn and'll be a good time. Stop by if you're local. You just might get your hands on some of this...

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Wednesday on the Wheel: Still on tour

Lest you think that I have disappeared from the face of the internet, a feat that is highly unlikely to happen, I am here to share the latest mad Tour de Fleece spinning with you, or at the very least, one of my current projects.

I am still on a serious spindle-spinning kick, so most of my productivity is happening there. A great deal of that is the fact that I pulled a mini braid of merino top out of my stash from Greenwood Fiberworks and promptly fell in love. Check out these colors:

That is the Vancouver colorway and I love it. As I said on my podcast, well-prepared merino is a joy to spin, and this stuff is beautifully prepared. It's only half an ounce so even spun super fine won't yield much yarn, but it's definitely encouraging me to stock up a little bit on more of her stuff.

You should definitely check her out!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Speaking out on Sunday: Festival Surprise!

Week Nine is here and available for downloading now!

I apologize one thousand times this week and not for no reason, as I sometimes do. I recorded the majority of this episode on the road, in my car, and boy does it show. I've edited the heck out of it, but the audio quality is not stellar. If you make it through this, you get my sincere admiration. If you want to hear only non-roadsound-audio, skip to the Shakespeare section. That was recorded at home.

That said, I hope that you do stick out the rest of the podcast, because there's a colorwork theory question for all of you and a review of the Oakland Fiber Festival that happened today that I really think you might like to hear. I actually had fun recording this way, but I promise that unless absolutely necessary, I won't subject anyone to it again.

And, as always, thanks for stopping by!

Enabling that I mentioned:

Old Sheep - I finally finished spinning some of the fiber I bought here, a long time back!

Dripping Fiber Studios - Purveyor of amazing batts, both with sparkle and without. Currently offering a series of batts based on the Game of Thrones books/series. She's still awesome.

Greenwood Fiberworks -- Where you can pick up a sampler box and experience excellent fiber prep and addicting color, first hand.

Girl on the Rocks -- Home of the Sheep bobbin, WPI gauge and owl-shaped needle gauge.

CloudLover Fiber -- As is she! Still! Always!

Wonderland Dyeworks -- I did indeed butcher her name. It's Elissavet and her colors are amazing. Go check them out!

Alpenglow Yarn -- The alpaca names are Blessing and Benjamin, and you can have some of their roving, too!

All That Other Stuff:

Rachael Herron -- Check out her books, her blog, and her in general at her website. She's fantabulous!

Saori Berkeley -- A lot of fun to watch, if not exactly my thing.

How to Contact me:

iTunes: Slinging Color
Ravelry: creaturecomfort
Ravelry Group: Creature Comfort Craftwork Fans
Etsy: Creature Comfort Craftworks on Etsy
Email: sarah.hawke [at]
Twitter: creaturecmfts
Facebook: Facebook
Plurk: Plurk

Talk to you next week!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Wednesday on the Wheel: The Tour is on!

As many of you who are spinners may know, the Tour de Fleece (which coincides with the Tour de France) is on. Those of us enamored of the spinning wheel and spindles are madly whirling away for the majority of this month, trying to meet self-imposed goals, finish big or new or challenging spinning projects and get through the mountains of fiber we tend to accumulate.

I'm right in the heart of spinning frenzy myself, which means, at the very least, that I will have things to show off for Wednesday on the Wheel for a while. Yay productivity!

My goal for this and every Tour I've participated in (this will make ...two) is simply to spin every day. As I'm somewhat magpie like, I spin a lot of things at the same time and make small amounts of progress on all of them. So, at the moment, here's what I've got:

The Cloudlover Rambouillet in the Saigon colorway, mid-spin.

The Dripping Fiber Studios Night's Watch batt, mid-spin on a spindle.

Some Old Sheep border leicester x merino from quite some time ago.

And an eentsy bit of Pepperpants silky cashmerino in the River Rocks colorway. This stuff is honestly some of the softest fiber I have ever felt. I crave more in lots of colors. I have been good and restrained myself, but seriously.

What are you working on this week?

Monday, July 4, 2011

Make It Monday: Just when you thought it was safe... look away from your monitors, she's back.

Nothing too shiny or exciting to say. Just kicking myself back to the routine, again, and sharing a little of the knitting I finished on my mini-vacation.

This is the Solar Flare shawl that I'm doing as part of an Into the Whirled KAL. The yarn is my handdyed merino/nylon fingering weight. It's not this dark in person, so the lace shows up better, but progress shared is progress appreciated. At least from this side of the screen. :)

Speaking out on Sunday (Monday, again): Touring with Shakespeare

Week Eight is here and available for downloading now!

It's a short one this week, but that's to be expected, given that my vacation fell right smack in the middle of prime podcast recording time. Needless to say, there's not a lot of craft to this episode, so if that's what you tune in to hear, you may want to skip this week. Next week I'll be better, I swear!

If, however, you're here for the Shakespeare? This is your week, baby. We've finally started on Henry VI, Part I. Let me know what you think of how I summarized it. Want more of the same? Less of something different. Sing out and make your voices heard.

Also, there will be a Make It Monday coming shortly. Really. Packing them in today. Must reclaim my schedule!

No show notes to speak of this week, but as always, thanks for stopping by!

All That Other Stuff:

I did announce the new contest! I'll be giving away one (1) 4 oz. bump of roving in your choice of fiber that I have on hand, custom dyed, one (1) skein of yarn, lace or fingering weight, custom dyed and one (1) copy of the No Fear Shakespeare of your choice.

Entry rules are the same as last time: Comment on any blog post in the month of July, or leave a comment in the podcast threads in my Ravelry group for your entry. This time I want you to tell me what you're working on for the month of July, whether that's a TdF spin, summer knitting, or any other crafty thing that makes your heart and your hands happy.

How to Contact me:

iTunes: Slinging Color
Ravelry: creaturecomfort
Ravelry Group: Creature Comfort Craftwork Fans
Etsy: Creature Comfort Craftworks on Etsy
Email: sarah.hawke [at]
Twitter: creaturecmfts
Facebook: Facebook
Plurk: Plurk

Talk to you next week!

Monday, June 27, 2011

Make It Monday: From the Road!

No post today, this week, and no Wednesday on the wheel, due to the typist being out of town.

I will do my best to get a Fiber Friday post up for y'all.

Until then, have a fantastic week!

Speaking out on Sunday (okay, it's Monday): The Road Ahead

Week Seven is here and available for downloading now!

This past week was a rough one in the SSIC household. I've been home by myself for eight days and I'm headed out of town for a few more while the Engineer comes home from his business trip. As I stumbled out on the podcast, this is the first time that we've been separated for this long in fifteen years. To those of you who have spouses serving overseas or simply working in a job that keeps them far away from home for significant stretches of time, my hat's off to you. Maybe it gets easier with time, but this has not been a lot of fun.

I got some good knitting and spinning done, though. Mostly spinning. The spindles were apparently feeling lonely and let me know about it in no uncertain terms. I also got a magazine review in this week, and I'm getting ready to embark on my study of Henry VI, Part One with those of you following along.

Apologies for the show notes being delayed this week, but as always, thanks for stopping by!

New patterns I talked about:

Solar Flare by Laura Kanemori -- Not that I needed more shawls on the needles, but I couldn't resist the KAL going on in the Into the Whirled group on Ravelry. I'm using handdyed sw merino/nylon in that gold-brown yarn from my selfish dyer post. It's coming along really nicely. Join us, if you feel so inclined!

Magazines I mentioned:

Interweave Knits Weekend - The most recently released issue of this special magazine. This is the link to the digital format, but if you're more a fan of paper, like I am, feel free to order a copy or grab one from your LYS.

All That Other Stuff:

A couple of shops to check out on Etsy for fun spinning fibers!

Old Sheep - A great shop to find amazing bargain prices if you're willing to buy bundles of fiber and batts at a time. One of the first places I shopped when I learned to spin.

Dripping Fiber Studios - Purveyor of amazing batts, both with sparkle and without. Currently offering a series of batts based on the Game of Thrones books/series. Check her out!

How to Contact me:

iTunes: Slinging Color
Ravelry: creaturecomfort
Ravelry Group: Creature Comfort Craftwork Fans
Etsy: Creature Comfort Craftworks on Etsy
Email: sarah.hawke [at]
Twitter: creaturecmfts
Facebook: Facebook
Plurk: Plurk

Talk to you next week!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Fiber Friday: The self-indulgent dyer

As a human being in this life, it's taken me a while to figure out a few things. Occasionally I feel like I'm behind the curve when it comes to common sense notions, but most of the time I figure I'm right on time for where I'm supposed to be.

Doing things for other people before I do them for myself has been an ongoing theme in my life. I don't think I'm all that special in that regard. It seems to be a woman/female sort of thing to do, but some people figure out the whole doing for themselves a lot more quickly than I did.

In all aspects of living, including this newer one for me, as a fiberista/dyer/color-splatterer. :) I traditionally dye things that I think would please other people. Sure, they're colorways that I like, too, for the most part, but sometimes the dyes combine in unpredictable ways and they're more popular to other people than they appeal to me.

And then sometimes, I take a step back, and I dye things in color combinations that I really love. And I keep the results. I may eventually share them with others, but mostly, they're for me.

Today, I'm showing you a couple of self-indulgences. They make me smile.

Happy Friday! Happy weekend!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Wednesday on the Wheel: Mad spinnery

It's a late post, but it's still Wednesday, so it still counts! :)

I'm not sure entirely what's gotten into me this week, but I seem to be suffering spinning madness. Maybe it's all just me ramping up to Tour de Fleece, during which I am hoping to spin a little every day. Seeing as that's sort of the idea and all.

But this week, I have been reaching for the spindles a lot. Yes, I've been spinning on the wheel, too, but the spindles and I have really been grooving for the past few days. What can I say? When you've got gorgeous fiber to play with, it has to be used, doesn't it?

So. First, some progress on the Cloudlover rambouillet in the Saigon colorway:

And my current favorite on the spindle: Nightwatch from Dripping Fiber Studios

Monday, June 20, 2011

Make It Monday: More Mitts

I promised I'd get myself back on schedule with a post today, and here it is, a brand new Make It Monday. With a ...mostly halfway finished project. *cough*

This is 99% of 50% of a pair of Endpaper Mitts by Eunny Jang. I have talked about these on the blog before. I've talked about them on the podcast. And now I'm (nearly) halfway finished! I just need to do the ribbing on the thumb and I'm good to move on to the second mitt.

Which, of course, I don't need now that summer has finally kicked in, but when fall and winter roll around again? I'm going to have the warmest hands on the planet!

Well, they'll be warm at least.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

It's a sorry Sunday.

Due to a number of circumstances, there's not going to be a podcast episode this week. I know I missed Fiber Friday, too, but I will make it up tomorrow, starting with my usual Make It Monday and I will have a podcast next Sunday!

Thanks for hanging with me! :)

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Wednesday on the Wheel: Sheepy goodness

If you listen to the podcast, you will have heard me mention that I have not being doing much spinning of late. Last week was a very productive knitting week and this week continues to be so. I am, however, trying to do a little spinning every day. I've got enough fiber at the moment to keep me busy until I'm at least 40, so I really should do something with it.

Nope, not telling when that is. Yet. :)

I recently picked up the Shetland that I got from RogueAdventures again, so I thought I'd share some not-so-much-but-some-progress shots with you.

Do you remember what the fleece looked like? Clumpy and dirty and impressively full of vm?

Well, I've since washed it, combed some samples out, which resulted in picking out a lot of that vm, and then spun some, which made more vm fall out. And yes, there's still some in there, but it's much nicer much cleaner, and I am not grossed out by simply touching the stuff.

Also, it smells good. I've heard other people say this about fleeces, so I know I'm not alone, but this stuff just smells right. Maybe it's the lanolin. Maybe it's just sheepy goodness. I don't know, but I like it.

That's about 1.5 ounces on the spindle and another .5 cushioning it. I've got about three left. If I keep spinning it that thin, it may all fit on one cop. Which would be a first, but would also thrill me.

Anyway, there you go. Slow progress, small amounts of progress, but progress nonetheless.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Make It Monday: Stick a fork in me...

The Radiance Shawl is done! I've been talking (and griping) about it for so long that there's a part of my brain that just can't comprehend how I could possibly be finished with it.

The larger part of my brain is telling that little part to shut the heck up.

It took 665 yards or so of my handdyed merino lace, a US 4 (3.5 mm) set of Clover Bamboo circular needles, a few mistakes, hours of knitting and mile and a half of stick-to-it to get it done, but it's done and I love it and I have already worn it on chilly mornings here in the house.

Hundreds of stitches can't keep this knitter down, baybee!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Speaking out on Sunday: Investing in the Craft

Week Six is here and available for downloading now!

I have had a very productive knitting week, and I'm feeling pretty good about myself and about my work. It probably doesn't hurt that the weather has finally gotten (and stayed!) nice for more than a couple of days, so that lifts the spirits and makes me pretty happy in general.

I'm talking about investing in the craft this week, which is something that I feel it's important to do, and something it's really easy to forget to do. We crafty types, we tend to spend a lot of time alone and many of us are not quite ready to declare ourselves outgoing and social butterflies. When I'm feeling particularly hermit-like, it helps me to know that there are other people out there, possibly feeling the same way, and that I can reach out and connect with them, particularly in places like Ravelry.

I've got some new Shakespeare words for you this week, and a little bit of trivia. In addition to my usual project talk, there's a mini impromptu-review of some knitting needles and mention of a few magazines.

Thanks for stopping by!

New patterns I talked about:

Mystery Shawl #21 by Renee Leverington -- This pattern won't be available until the whole thing is completed and named, but she does a mystery shawl every month. There's one going on now and another starting in July.

Magazines I mentioned:

Colorways - A new eMag from Interweave Press that talks about dyeing techniques for fiber artists. Right up my alley!

You can also check out Sockupied, which is another Interweave Press eMag talking all about, you guessed it, sock knitting!

All That Other Stuff:

The SOAR event in New Hampshire this October. If you attend, come back and tell me about the Navajo spinning workshop!

Kollage Yarns makes some products that really interest me, namely the square needles and their recycled denim Riveting yarn!

And, for the curious, here's that article about the real Ophelia!

How to Contact me:

iTunes: Slinging Color
Ravelry: creaturecomfort
Ravelry Group: Creature Comfort Craftwork Fans
Etsy: Creature Comfort Craftworks on Etsy
Email: sarah.hawke [at]
Twitter: creaturecmfts
Facebook: Facebook
Plurk: Plurk

Talk to you next week!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Fiber Friday: It came from outer space!

Another Phat Fiber box will soon be available, and this time the theme is... Science Fiction!

As a devoted fan, how could I possibly not contribute? (It's also a lot of fun, but who asked about that? :)

So this is my colorway this month: Pangalactic Gargle Blaster! It may not be quite the same thing as a brain bashing from a lemon-wrapped gold brick, but I think my after effect is a little bit prettier.

Happy Friday everyone! Hope your weekend is amazing. Share your WWKIP Day stories!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Wednesday on the Wheel: The proof is in the ...yarn.

Never let it be said that I do not (most of the time) put my money where my mouth is. I said I'd finished the fall Creek Fibers wool, and I have, but there have to be pictures or it didn't happen, right?

Well, here, see for yourself:

250 yards of a fingering to light sport weight yarn, chain plied. Go me!

It seems, in looking at other people's stash pages on Ravelry, that we all have a comfort zone when it comes to spinning. Mine appears to be the ability to get about 250 yards out of a 4 ounce bump of fiber. I won't complain. It helps me to know how much I'd need to buy if I wanted enough for a bigger project.

What about you? Do you have an average? Are you satisfied with it? Inquiring minds want to know!

Monday, June 6, 2011

Make It Monday: The bare bones of knitting

It's Monday again. That keeps happening and someone should figure out how to make it stop. Who doesn't think the week would be helped by jumping straight to Tuesday? Hands up.

Not that voting changes the fact that it's Monday and Monday means another Make It Monday posting. Except... I don't have anything to share with you. Well. That's not exactly true. I don't have anything of mine to show you.

But I was reminded of this particular piece of amazing art while reading my Interweave Knits this weekend, and if you haven't seen it before, take a gander now:

Your eyes are not deceiving you. You are looking at a knitted skeleton. I'm astounded. What about you?

This fellow is part of Ben Cuevas' Transcending the Material piece and it's even more amazing when you get a look at all the little details. The teeth. The hands! It makes me seriously debate complaining about the time spent on any of my knitting projects. None of them turned out like this.

I'm awed and inspired and just a lil' bit jealous. Way to go, Ben!

Speaking out on Sunday: Knitting for a Cause

Week Five is here and available for downloading now!

A short week and then a long week. This is my longest episode yet. Y'all said you wanted me to talk, and baybee, I talked this time. I think there's some good stuff in there along with the usual Sarah-chatter. You'll have to let me know if you feel the same way.

The big thing this week is that I'm talking about knitting for a cause, or knitting for charity. I've seen a lot of calls for donations and a lot of donation drives happening lately, and I got a bit caught up in it.

There are of course updates, and the big news -- that my Radiance Shawl is finished!
All right, that's not all the big news. The winner for my inaugural contest has been chosen! Want to know who that is? You'll have to give the podcast a listen!

I've also decided on a play to break down for you, starting with the first episode in July. We're going to go in chronological order, so grab a copy of Henry VI, Part One, and get reading! :)

New patterns I talked about:

In Dreams Mystery Shawl by Susan Pandorf -- Part of the Two Towers series of objects, based on the Lord of the Rings series. Beautiful if time consuming.

Magazines I mentioned:

Interweave Knits, Summer 2011 - Lots of great quick-to-read articles and patterns inside. Check it out!

All That Other Stuff:

The event at the Retzlaff Winery was canceled this weekend due to inclement weather, but there's a possibility that it's on for the 18th, instead. Keep an eye out for updates about that.

World Wide Knit In Public Day (WWKIP) is on Saturday, June 11th. Check in with your local knitting groups and LYSses to see what they have in store!

How to Contact me:

iTunes: Slinging Color
Ravelry: creaturecomfort
Ravelry Group: Creature Comfort Craftwork Fans
Etsy: Creature Comfort Craftworks on Etsy
Email: sarah.hawke [at]
Twitter: creaturecmfts
Facebook: Facebook
Plurk: Plurk

Talk to you next week!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Fiber Friday: Ready, Set, Spin!

I can hardly believe it's June, and yet I'm already thinking ahead to next month. Are you a spinner? Spindle, wheel, stick, it doesn't matter. If you spin, then you should know about the Tour de Fleece.

Every year, to coincide with the Tour de France, spinners around the world sit at their wheels and spin their spindles en masse, spinning pounds of fiber and miles of yarn as they watch the cyclists compete.

Of course, there's no requirement that you watch, or that you participate in a group. If you're a member of Ravelry though, (it's free!), there's an entire group devoted to the event. Indie Dyers often have discounts, spin-a-longs and special colors that are offered to help encourage participation. Prizes are given out. It's great fun!

And this year I'm no exception. I will be offering various fibers in my TdF2011 colorway, which currently looks like this on polwarth:

Different fibers and different dyelots will vary somewhat, but the basics are grape-y purples and greens were the inspiration. I'm calling it Wheel-Time Wine. Bikes, France, it seemed appropriate.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Wednesday on the Wheel: Progress? Knock me over with a bobbin!

It's Wednesday again, which means it's time for another wheel report.

Also...It's June 1st. That means I've been officially actively blogging for a month. Holy carp, does time fly. I'm still reeling over the fact that it's June at all (which you wouldn't know if you judged solely by the still-rainy weather in NorCal) and now this? Happy anniversary to me!

Slow though I am, I do occasionally make progress. This week I'm happy to report that I have finished spinning the Fall Creek Fibers superwash wool. It is not yet yarn, but it is a plying ball of singles at this point. This is what the very full bobbin looked like before that happened:

And now I'm on to yet another bump of fiber that I bought ages back and have shamefully not yet spun. Say hello to rambouillet in the "Saigon" colorway from Cloudlover.

Natalie has an amazing color sense and her fibers are always gorgeously prepared. I think this may be the first rambo I've spun, and I'm extremely happy this far. If it's going to take me a while to spin, it's always better when I really enjoy the fiber.

I think I pretty clearly have color family favorites, don't you? Sakura sits in there quite nicely, thanks.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Make It Monday: Sock It To Me

Can you tell that I have way too much fun coming up with titles for my blog posts? That, or I have a horrible sense of humor. Maybe both.

Ahem. Anyway!

Today, I am sharing my socks. New socks. Socks because I was bitten by the sock bug and I have not attempted to knit any socks for quite a while. I don't like the thought of tons of work going into things that will be hidden on people's feet, but I know that socks are appreciated and they're relatively quick and hey, it's new and it's shiny. For now.

These are the Traditional Gansey Socks by Wendy Johnson of Wendy Knits, and out of her Socks From The Toe Up book. The yarn is Springvale sock from Three Irish Girls in the Smoke and Mirrors colorway.

If the boy doesn't want these, I'm keeping them. But I think the sock bug may be here to stay.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Speaking out on Sunday: Bringing in the Bard

Week Four is here and available for downloading now!

(Sadly I deleted the show notes from this page by accident. I will attempt to recreate them again when I'm not worried that I'll just make things worse. ) :)
How to Contact me:

iTunes: Slinging Color
Ravelry: creaturecomfort
Ravelry Group: Creature Comfort Craftwork Fans
Etsy: Creature Comfort Craftworks on Etsy
Email: sarah.hawke [at]
Twitter: creaturecmfts
Facebook: Facebook
Plurk: Plurk

Talk to you next week!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Fiber Friday: Back to the dyepots we go.

So it's been a while since I gave you a good shot of anything I've been dyeing. Oh, sure, I showed you the Mexican Chocolate bfl/silk last week, but I don't know if that really counts.

So here are a few of my new favorites. Easy on the brain, since we're approaching a long weekend and really, who wants to do insightful or philosophical writing before the fun starts?

Enjoy the colors!