Tour de Fleece 2014 comes to a close…

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Tour de Fleece has come and gone, sadly. But holy banana, was it successful! I haven’t tallied up my total yardage quite yet, but here are a couple pictures of a few of the things I spun…

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Cherry Cola from Daybreak Dyeworks! 254 yards of a 2-ply!

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Cerise from Three Waters Farm! This was my last one of the tour… got the singles spun before everything finished up, but wasn’t able to get it plied until after the Tour was over. Its the thought that counts! I was close!

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This is the TdF Team Braid from Daybreak Dyeworks! (I’m a bit obsessed, can you tell? Heeee ^_^) Dawn (of Daybreak Dyeworks) sent along a braid for my mom for the tour! It was so incredibly nice of her! My mom requested something really light and airy, to which I decided on singles! (more on that later… I learned how to do that! whoop!) I’m extremely happy how this skein turned out… its so insanely soft and squishy! I got 596 yards of the singles. I have yet to full them! I’ll do that soon!

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I’m extremely happy with how I did during the tour. I learned a lot of new things! I tried new techniques. I experimented. I did a lot of research before doing said experimenting (it was kind of scary, haha. #fiberfears). I was anxious it wouldn’t work out, but it was a huge success! I spun with a couple of fibers that I had never spun with before. I sold some of my yarn at my LYS, where I’m interning this summer!

Needless to say… I can’t wait for next year’s tour d^_^b
…which, if all things go as planned, I should hopefully be overseas somewhere, possibly, in France! My major requires a study abroad at some point (oh, how sad. a study abroad. how terrible ;-P) and since I’m almost done with my language requirement classes, I should be on target to do my study abroad in the Summer of 2015! Which means… that I might be in France during the Tour, and might even get to see some of it, maybe. That blows my mind, haha.

Although, if I’m over there… I can’t really bring my wheel. Sad day. Who knows, I plan on finding a yarn store, if there is one, wherever I end up going. There might be wheels there, maybe? Either way, I plan on stocking up on handspun, so I can at least be *knitting* with handspun!

But all of this is still up in the air… so who knows what is going to happen!

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Pomme de Pin kerfuffle and success!

So, if you follow me on Twitter or on Instagram, you’ll know that I had a kerfuffle with my Pomme de Pin sweater. I had finished the sleeves and everything was happy happy… it was time to start sewing things together.

I laid it out, to see it in all its glory.. to see this.

It was quite a devastating moment, haha! I tried it on, and it was really obvious the differences of the fronts, haha. One was way too big… one was way too small.

This was totally my fault, though I’m not sure where I went wrong… but I wasn’t paying close enough attention, haha!

So, after much chat with awesome people online, I embraced the fact that I had to frog it. Which included frogging the back as well. Frogged it up to the division, counted at least 15 times for each section, had everything laying nicely on the floor so *everything* was visible.

And now… I’m so glad I did all the extra work, despite the fact that frogging it was a bit painful, haha!

I re-knit the back during my brother’s New Student Conference for A&M (woot woot!) since there were several long sessions where we had to sit and listen. Then I worked on the fronts for a bit longer, since I was knitting both at the same time… it was a bit more tangly and hard to lug around. Finished everything last night, kitchenered it together and I’m SO HAPPY WITH IT.

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I’m soooo excited to see what its going to look like with the sleeves and the button band. SO EXCITED!!

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I love the length… I have a longish torso, so I was worried that it once the body was done that it might be too short. But this was not the case ^_^

The new worry is that I might not have enough yarn to finish the button band, haha! But I’m not going to worry about it right now… Just going to keep knitting it, and if I run out.. I shall order more!

In other news, I’m spinning away, happy days!

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This is called The Candy Man by Two If by Hand from the Willy Wonka fiber club… that I couldn’t resist signing up for, haha! Super soft and squishy!

I’m spinning it thinner, so its taking longer. Makes sense, haha :-P But we’ll see what it ends up like before I decide what to make with it.. and my yardage, haha! But whatever it is… its going to be fun, squishy, colorful, and AWESOME. ^_^

Also, I’m going to be casting on Gyllis by Stephen West soon. Because in my extremely near future (as in like… 2 days) there is a lot of car time (one way = 9ish hours. Both ways = knitknitknitknitknit)
I shall be working on finishing my Pogona (ONLY 1.5″ LEFT. I SEE THE LIGHT) and then, if I finish Pogona (or maybe not, heehee ^_^) I shall be casting that on. With that Cascade 220 Superwash in that awesome TARDIS blue color..

Tour de Fleece catch up!

Its been crazyyyyy busy! Like, holy cow. What is going on?!

Not really, but it seems that way, haha.

This past weekend, my family and I went over to College Station to start all the prep and painting of our apartments/flats/whatever. Mainly mine… right now. We’ll eventually to my brother’s place, haha.

All the woodwork and baseboards and all the walls are done downstairs. All the woodwork is done upstairs… annnd.. thats it, haha.

We were extremely sore and tired when we got home. And the first night staying there, we had an unfortunate mishap with the fire alarms in my place. Which… was just bad bad bad. No fire, or anything. It was the paint fumes… not fun. We got things fixed, hallelujah. But, yes. We were extremely tired.

But we’re home now! For a couple days, we go back on Wednesday to continue the work and painting, and my brother has his New Student Conference – woot woot! Unfortunately, that means not very much spinning and/or knitting. So, I’m getting in as much as I can before we leave again.

So yeah, I’m behind on posting about Tour de Fleece stuff. Here are some pictures ^_^

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Here’s Neon and Neutral by Daybreak Dyeworks (can’t say this enough – go check her store out, it’s the BEST!) I got around 230yds of a heavy DK/light worsted weight.

(Sidenote: Dawn, from Daybreak Dyeworks, just started a Farmers Market series in her shop, and I want to buy all the things. The Eggplant is just… aaaghhh, haha! Back to the post, heehee :-P)

I’m not sure what I’m going to be making with this.. I want something that’ll be fun and funky. Maybe I’ll make a plain hat, but add some stripes or something. Or use this as the stripes. Oooor… maybe a Stephen West pattern? Or something? I don’t know, haha.

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This was quite amazing, actually. We got home on Sunday afternoon (and the AC wasn’t working. Fellow Houstonians, you’ll understand how bad that was, haha. Its fixed now, hallelujah) so, we got home… and unloaded, then I came up to spin. And, I spun and plied the entire 4oz braid in an evening, finishing at around a little past midnight. Which, I’m pretty happy with.

Second yarn! Woot woot!

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I’m insanely happy with how this turned out. Like, oh my goodness… So happy, haha! This is the Lavinia color from Into the Whirled (from the Knitabulls SAL d^_^b) (which, I now realize that I’ve been posting “Into the Whorl”, and thats not right, haha. Its “Whirled” :-P) and I got 270yds of a worsted weight. The barber pole (ha! Got it right this time, haha! Not barbera pulling :-P)

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Anyways, the whole fractal spinning… so addictive. Can’t stop, haha!

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Before I had spun it up, I had thought I was going to be making these mittens… but after its bath (its drying now ^_^), it sooo much more softer. Which is amazing, because it was already really soft to begin with, haha. But who knows, haha. We’ll see what happens ^_^

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Bertie was not happy that we were gone over the weekend. This does not bode well for when I actually leave for college. *sadface*

Complete body, start of a sleeve

Despite my huge plans of knitting on the beach, it didn’t really happen. I think I ended up knitting for about 10 minutes, haha.

I think this was because 1) due to the fineness of the sand on the beach, it was getting everywhere and in everything. As much as I loved the sand, I didn’t want it in my knitting. And 2) So many things to do, see, people to watch, family to talk to, sun to absorb… I was busy d^_^b

But, when we were in the airport for pretty much the entire day, for the journey homeward, I got a ton of knitting done.

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Tada! The body of my Pomme de Pin Cardigan is now complete, and I have started on the sleeves…

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The ribbing on this sleeve was a breeze, because I read the whole time, while knitting it, haha.

Knitting the lace in the round is kinda throwing me off… it’s getting a bit messed up. But it’ll be on underside of the sleeve, so its all good ^_^

Home again, home again, jiggty jig

Ahh, its so nice to come home and be able to sleep in your own bed, have your full stash available, endless supply of tea, kitty cuddles, the familiarness of your house… It is quite a nice feeling.

Though I do love going on vacation – it was an absolute blast and I cannot wait to get to go back to Marco Island. Its seriously one of the best places ever.

Won’t write much now, got lots of laundry to do ;-P

But in the meantime, here’s a picture for you guys…

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We got to go parasailing on Thursday before the wedding. I’m on the left, my dad in the middle, and my sister-in-law on the right. We saw a dolphin when we were close the water. It was epic. It was amazing. Never thought I’d go parasailing, but ohhhh, I’m so glad I did. If you ever get the chance, DO IT. Do it, you won’t regret it v^_^v

I’m in Florida!

Let the wedding games begin!

After waking up at 3:30 this morning, heading to the airport, running through the airport (wedding dress in tow, haha), almost missing our first flight, having another flight, landing in Ft. Myers and then driving to Marco Island… I am dead, haha.

Its been quite a day. One of those days where you have no absolute control over anything, so all you can do is just laugh and go along with whatever is happening. I have enjoyed twittering and instagram-ing (because both those nouns can be turned into verbs. Oh yeah.) the whole adventure. And that was just the first day! Waaaat?! (You can follow me on twitter and instagram if you click on the corresponding links d^_^b)

Anyways, so we drove to Marco Island… which I haven’t been to since I was a wee little child. I have a lot of happy memories of when I was here, but it’s definitely been more than 10 years that I’ve been away.

My family has some family history, memories, happy stuff associated with Marco Island. We used to vacation here a lot when my grandparents owned an apartment thing. So, we spent a lot of time on the beach :-) This is one of the reasons why my sister decided to get married in Marco, on one of the beaches we played on as kids.

So, after the really long day… being pretty much dead and starving… we arrived. We had lunch on the beach, and then went for a walk.. All the stress of getting up at 3:30 and going through all the trauma at the airport was definitely worth what can be seen here on the island..

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It was absolutely gorgeous today…

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Sibling affection was shown. Sort of, haha.

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we waded into the ocean.. it was amazing.

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Seashells were looked at. It was a good day.

Tomorrow, we get to lay around on the beach (knitting ^_^) and just hanging out until people start arriving. I think tomorrow will be a good day as well ^_^

Midterms = No knitting mojo

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Bertie and I are quite sad that I haven’t posted in like a week and a half. Thats crazy, I’ve never done that before… and I hope I don’t do that again, haha.

What was I doing? School got extremely crazy, midterms right and left.. non-midterms that had to be done.. Homework and tests were coming out my ears. Plus, I wasn’t really feeling that amazing, so that didn’t help. Oh, the joys of college.

So because of all hectic school and being tired all the time, my knitting mojo went waaaaay down.

“Wat, Grace, how can your knitting mojo have gone down? You’re always knitting!” you may be thinking.

This is true, but I wasn’t like bouncing off the walls about what I was knitting, and wasn’t really motivated to talk about it. (This is not to say that I’m not knitting awesome things, I am. I’m so excited about all the things on the needles. Just at the time, I was so tired I didn’t even feel like knitting. It was a bummer, haha!)

During one of my study breaks, my mom and I watched Diane of the Knitabulls podcast, episode #102 from March 14th entitled “Knitting What Makes Me Happy”.

Diane is so adorable and sweet, if you enjoy knitting podcasts, I definitely recommend hers… check it out! But in this episode, she talked about how this year she was only going to knit on things that made her happy! She wasn’t going to be pressured to finish things she cast on, if they had become a little tedious or boring to work on.

I love that. I don’t consider knitting (and all crafting) as something that I have to do in order to get a sweater or a hat the end… because I need a sweater or a hat. I do it because I *love* to knit. The things I knit are fun, and I’m excited about how they’ll turn out.

That kind of got lost amongst all my school, and knitting wasn’t quite as excited as it had been without the school. I didn’t want to knit on something half-heartedly then throw up a blog post without the passion behind the project, if that makes sense.

So here I am again! Because I took Diane’s idea to heart, and cast something new on because I could and because it’d make me feel good, haha! Despite the fact that I have several sweaters going, a couple shawls going and a wall full of yarn.

Over spring break, my family and I made a crazy fast road trip in one day… Houston to College Station to Austin, then home. In one day. But it was AWESOME. In Austin we stopped by the Hill Country Weavers (Oh my goodness. One of the best yarn stores I’ve ever been in. If you have a chance to go there, GO THERE. NOW.)

and we saw their shelf of Brooklyn Tweed… both Loft and Shelter. My mom and I squee-ed a bit, haha :-P

We came prepared though! A couple days earlier I had found a Pomme de Pin cardigan by Amy Christoffers that had been done in Loft! It was absolutely gorgeous…(you can check it out here!) and that sold both my mom and I on making one. Before we had been kinda like “ehhh, it’s so cute. But I don’t know about what yarn”. Loft is the yarn.

So we came home with several skeins of Loft, in addition to many other things (eh heh. It’s nearly impossible to go in there and not want to buy everything. I challenge you to go in there with something in mind, and not come out with at least one thing extra, hahaha!)

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This is my color… and it’s so beautiful. I love the little flecks of black that show up. So yes, I cast on on… Sunday. Then today after my last class, I was almost done with the first lace repeat. Holy banana, it’s so gorgeous! And squishy! And it smells good!!

My mom got the Almanac colorway, which is that bright blue… but yet subtle enough so it’s still really classy. It’ll be adorable.

What else did we get? Well, I ended up getting a couple skeins of various MadTosh…

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The ones closest to the bottom are Merino Lite, the other three are DK. I’m not quite sure what I’ll be doing with them… but I know that whatever I do… it’ll be EPIC.

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Bertie approves too ^_^

So, I’m back, knitting upon things that make me happy. I do apologize for my absence – I missed blogging!