Category: Blog

February Color

I was inspired the other day to do a little color blending on the drum carder.

So I dove into my dyed wools bin, and came up with a couple of fairly satisfying combos

But found my stash to be a bit heavy on the pinks and purples. So today, since it was so nice and spring-y I decided to remedy the situation, and got the dye pot out to do a little colorizing of my stash of Esther fleece.

I chose a few Wool Tinctures shades that spoke to me- Midnight, Deep Water, and Blood Orange

Here they are straight out of the pot

Midnight- about a pound total, first batch on top, exhaust batch below. Like indigo, but easier!
Deep Water, about a pound total, first batch on top, exhaust batch below
Blood Orange, a little less than a pound, all done at once until bath exhausted.

I do so love those colors. Can’t wait ’til they are dry and ready to play with!

For now they are hanging out in the hoophouse, next to my earliest seedlings

If you look closely, you can see little broccolis, onions, peas and thyme popping their heads up. No sign of cilantro yet, but it’s only been 7 days.

And just outside the hoophouse, my plan for a new potato and squash bed is shaping up nicely.

The lawn slopes town towards the hoophouse, so I wanted to establish an edge on the bed to level it a bit and prevent it “flowing” into the baseboard and rollup sides.

The oval shaped ceramic thingees are from the upper part of a chimney we had disassembled last year, and in-between them I’ve got short sections of corrugated metal roofing from the old chicken house that used to be on this site.

And behind the metal I’ve got bricks (from the chimney again). Think I’m going to build those up a couple more layers, but it’s feeling nice and solid already. Also going to fill the oval elements with soil and plant with probably herbs or flowers.

Was cool to be able to repurpose some miscellaneous bits to serve the purpose!

February Sun

Puxatawny Phil has advised us that there is plenty of winter left, but today sure feels like spring.

Everyone out the pasture is really appreciating it.

Smart chickens basking in the shed entryway, out of sight of eagles and hawks.

The sunshine also inspired me to start some early cool-season seeds

I’ve got snap peas, broccoli, bunching onions, cilantro and thyme there in egg cartons. Thinking that if I can get the peas and broccoli going quick, I can maybe get a crop in the hoophouse before I’m ready to plant tomatoes, melons and other warm-season stuff in the ground. Goal seed sowing date for most of that stuff is 2 weeks from now.

And speaking of tomatoes, the two little volunteers from last year’s garden are still going strong in the laundry room under lights- and one is even blooming!

It was kind of a slow week wool-wise. Still spinning up the rest of the Jacob fleece that I picked up for the expo class. It’s so sweet and sproingy! Can’t seem to find any focus knitting-wise tho.

Maybe more mitts this week? Just a little somethin’ to keep the hands busy.

Expo Day!

Hi y’all.

On the knitting front, it’s been a week of casting on and ripping out, in both Brioche and Double Knitting. Nothing noteworthy to report there.

At the moment I’m focused on getting prepared for my Wool Processing class for the WSU Country Living Expo, which will happen today at 3 pm. It’s on Zoom again this year, and it’s my first time teaching in this mode. Trying to make sure I’ve got everything covered so it all goes smoothly.

If you’re not an Expo-er but still interested in the content, I have posted the videos and handout to a new page on the website. It’s not on the main menu, but accessible via a link on the sidebar, under “Resources”.

So for now, I’ll just leave you with one of my favorite sheep cartoons

Breaking New Ground

First literally- as in establishing another planting bed. Plan is to use this space for potatoes and squash this year-

Managed to lift and move most of the sod to other spots around the property, and now it’s onwards to amending the soil! I’ve got a good-sized pile of compost standing by and ready to go.

But also figuratively- in that I tried a new-to-me knitting thing this week. Double Knitting.

It’s been a while since I tried a new knitting technique, and a couple of things I watched on YouTube recently inspired me to give it a shot. (Inspiration references: Sockmatician pocast and Fruity Knitting w/ Alasdair Post-Quinn )

Amazing, mind-bending stitch structures and projects. Got me thinking about just how much there is to know.

So I decided to give it a shot. Just a simple swatch.

Nothing fancy. But it worked! And it makes this really lovely cushy fabric.

So now I need to figure out how to do it using my usual purl technique (norwegian purl). Might need a yarn guide or something.

So many colorwork possibilities-