Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Zebisis Designs

I seriously doubt there are many people out there who haven't heard of Zebesis Designs, but on the off chance that you haven't, this is the place to get some of the most beautiful spindles I have ever seen.

Example A:

Gorgeous, huh? As if that's not awesome enough, she also sells fiber. I was lucky enough to get a silk sample in my Phat Fiber box (see previous entry) and the stuff is amazingly soft. I haven't been able to stop petting it long enough to spin it.

If I hadn't just got my Joy I would be so tempted by the club too. She has a spindle and fiber club, which I think is the coolest idea.

Friday, March 20, 2009

My March Phat Fiber Box arrived today!!!

It really was a great month for samples. I think everything was extra fluffy because the box seemed extra full, although when I counted there was about the same number of samples as I got last month. It just feels bigger.

The yarn:

Top left corner is two samples of cotton from Sheeps of Egyptian Cotton. Soft and super beautiful. They also included a bag of tea which I promptly passed on to my mom, the tea drinker in this house.

Bottom left corner is handspun from Simply Twisted Yarn. I'm not sure what fiber it is but it has a fabulous sheen.

Next to that is handspun from Melissa's Kre8tions. I love the blues and greens in this skein.

More handspun from Artemisia Ink Studio Arts. Corridale-Merino cross wool, undyed. This stuff is so fluffy it feels like Fleece!

Hand dyed Wool and Mohair yarn from Plum Crazy Ranch and Fiber Art. (is it just me or is it impossible to find on this site where to buy anything?)

And last of the yarn, but definately not least is some sock yarn in "Crock O Gold" from Sweet Pea Fibers. Very soft, as well as a fairly large sized sample. I can't wait to knit this one up.

Calizona Designs is in the yarn picture too, but they deserve their own seperate section. My envelope included stitch markers, a sample skein of yarn, a knitted headband pattern, a beautiful pendant, and a $10 Gift Certificate!!

The Fibers:

I let out a little squeal when I realized I had a fiber sample from Zebisis Designs (bottom right corner, pink). I've admired her spindles for months and the silk top with noil sample is divine. I absolutely can not wait to spin this up.

The soft green all the way to the left is from Tactile Fiber Arts. There are two naturally dyed colors of BFL fiber. Super soft!

Second to the left is a braid of wool top from Feeling Sheepish. (if you scroll down, there's a picture of my cat right after he gave it a big lick. Apparently Feeling Sheepish top is kitty approved) It's soft, squishy, and the colors are amazing! I will definately be placing an order in this shop sometime in the future.

The green braid of fiber is from cloudlover. The colorway is "Loch Ness" and it's Hand Painted BFL wool. Wonderfully squishable and lovely shades of green.

All the way to the right is a 1/2 ounce of BFL locks from Altered Visions. Great colors. They look all fluffy and ready to spin, no flicking necessary.

Okay, top left hand corner is a little ball of roving from Natchwoolie. The color is hard to describe, almost a greenish brown (in a good way, hehe). I love the way it's tied with handspun into a little ball.

Top right is a batt form Artemisia Ink Studio Arts. (Huh, I just realized through typing everything up that I got handspun from there too) Soft grey/blue/purple colors, merino wool and grey mohair blend. 3/8 oz in "March Storms" Really pretty, I'm looking forward to spinning this as well.

In my little envelope of business cards and coupons was this little gem:

There's a little debate going on in my family as to whether the animal is supposed to be a poodle or a black sheep (I say sheep). It's a beautiful stitch marker from Yarndemon Designs that is so beautiful I just might put it on a chain as a pendant.

While I looked through the box Mr. Muggles (our very own Blog Kitty) lay across the box top and observed and cast his approval over things.

As mentioned above, he particularly loved the braid of fiber from Feeling Sheepish. He gave it a good lick just before this picture was taken.

When I attempted to nudge him off to close everything back up in it's box, he objected strongly.

Yes, those are claws digging into the cardboard. Apparently he decided it was his box. (When he wasn't looking I yanked it out from under him)

Phew! Okay, I think I got everyone. There were a couple of patterns in my box too, but it's too hard to take pictures of those without giving away the instructions. :P

Anyway, I love everything (although I might try and trade for a shawl pin and/or a cupcake stitch marker) and am very happy I managed to snag a box this month. I don't know if I'll be able to for a couple months, but I reccomend anyone who can get one of these. It's more fun than you can imagine!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

One Week Anniversary...

I've had my Joy for exactly a week now. Still haven't picked a perfect name yet, she's just 'the wheel'. Yet somehow I know she's a she. Go figure.

I'm so in love. I love that I can easily spin and ply four ounces of fiber in a day as opposed to a week or two. I figured while I was still getting fairly thick yarn I should work on spinning the stuff I want to be worsted-ish weight, quick, before all I can spin is lace like on the spindle. :)

Upstairs I have drying 3 skeins of worsted/bulky yarn that started out as 12 oz of Spunky Eclectic Wool Blend in "Poison". No finished pictures, but I do have a couple of progress shots:

I'm still waiting on packages, one with 6 pounds or so from Sheep Shed Studios (3 pounds Coopsworth Locks, 1 pound Punta Roving and 2 pounds of Mill Ends) as well as more bobbins (I'm discovering the need for millions of them) and this month's Phat Fiber box.

On the off chance you haven't heard of Phat Fiber, I highly reccomend you visit their website and/or Ravelry Group. It's worth all the effort you put forth trying to get one, constant refreshing and hysterical clicking when they show up in the store... I was sure I wasn't going to get one this month, but figured I'd try, just in case. Low and behold, I wound up with one. I think my OCD pays off when it comes to things like this. I'll show off my goodies when they come.

One package that came last week from ChristinaMariePotter:

From top to bottom (all Corridale): Twilight inspired, Cylon inspired, and my personal favorite: Fruity Oaty Bars, a Firefly inspired colorway. I was a little surprised when I got them (partially because the Cylon looked pink instead of red in the pictures, although it said red in the listing). Each 4 oz braid (or 6 oz in the case of Fruity Oaty Bars) is 3 seperate colors of fiber braided together. Now that I think about it, they look way too perfect for a handpaint, but nevertheless I didn't realize that.

However, the more I thought about it, the more excited I was. I'm going to break out of my comfort zone even more with these. As soon as I get more bobbins I'm going to try a real live 3 ply with the Twilight colors.

Many more spinning pictures to come!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

*dust off blog*

Hey look! I'm alive! Ravelry kept me busy for a full year and a half, but it's about time I get back to blogging. If anyone's out there, hi! Welcome! Comment so I'll remember to blog more.

Two very special packages arrived today. I'll start with the less exciting one:

... which is actually pretty exciting. A large order from Spunky Eclectic (which took me about four hours to get due to everyone overloading the site when Amy updated). From left to right there are 4 oz braids of: Organic Merino in Lucas, Shetland in Brain Freeze, Orchard, and Mandy, and Panda in Burning Ember.

The reason that is the less exciting package? See what else came:

MY FIRST WHEEL!!!!! A double treadle Ashford Joy I ordered from Carol over at Sheep Shed Studios. I'm a little excited in case you can't tell.

Anyone who's seen all the fiber I've ordered this week has probably figured out that I think this wheel is going to make spinning faster. However, I was living under the happy delusion that after mastering the drop spindle the wheel would be a breeze.

I was a tad bit wrong. Like learning to spin on a drop spindle, knit for the first time, ect, it feels like you're an elephant trying to do ballet. Awkward. There's all this.... stuff... going on. The wheel turns. It turns two ways actually, and it's easy to mix up which way it's supposed to be going. The flyer... moves. Yarn falls off the hooks. The leader gets sucked through the orafice, sans fiber.

All this produces:

Lumpy bumpy "why-no-I've-never-spun-before-even-on-a-spindle" yarn.

Not that I'm complaining, mind you. After all, it's a spinning wheel. A spinning wheel I wouldn't have been able to afford without what I affectionately call "The Bank of Mommy*" (*The Bank of Mommy not available in all areas. Subject to exceptions. Interest may include cleaning of bathrooms) However, I guess I had some unrealistic exceptions.

Tomorrow will be a new day, a day I can spend most of spinning on my new wheel (which needs a name, btw. Suggestions, anyone?).

Maybe I'll master drafting on the wheel before the other two packages of fiber I'm getting arrive.