I just took a few days off, and I really do have lots of pics, but I cannot find the card reader right now so I cannot transfer them off the camera and on to the PC Don’t you love it.
Wednesday we managed to get in to see Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. We really, really liked it, and I really, really want to fly on a broom and a dragon. I really, really do. The special affects were great, and I think we are going to need to see this on the IMAX screen in 3D when DD gets home from camp. Prof. Umbridge was a delightful caricature of all the teachers you’ve ever hated. And Luna Lovegood was perfect. I don’t want to post any spoilers, so I’ll just leave it at that.
The last HP book comes out soon and DD will be at camp, so I won’t have to share it. And best of all I can make time to read it since I’m almost caught up on Mystery Stole 3 – I keep wanting to call it Mystery Stole 3000 – after Mystery Science Theater I guess. The theme definitely has something to do with insects and/or bugs.
Later Wednesday evening several of the knitting ladies of Chelmsford and Nashua all gathered for our first Stitch n Pitch night at the local Lowell Spinners game. What a blast – the night was perfect (no rain) and the beer was cold. The game was great (we won!). If you want to see some pics until I can locate the card reader, check out Jennifer’s blog here. I thought I was smart to bring a simple sock in progress – but Nooooooo. Somehow I managed to put the gusset decreases in the middle of the top of the foot. rrrriiipppppiiitttt!
On Thurday, the sun was out and it wasn’t too humid, so my sister and I spent most of the day dyeing fiber in her back yard. She was dying umpteen skeins of mohair for the upcoming Lowell Quilt Festival. She sells these yarns in her gallery. I, on the other hand dyed up 7 – 6oz. bumps of merino superwash, and about 6.5 oz. of corriedale and a couple of oz. of merino rovings. I put them up in 6 oz. bumps since that is approximately what you need for spinning up sock yarn.
Here’s a list of the colorways/dyes (Procion) that I used.
- Sapphire Blue – Raspberry – Cotton Candy
- Tangerine – Black – Spiced Pumpkin
- Iris – Ice Blue – Wedgewood
- Watermelon (flecked with some black) – Kiwi
- Olive Green – Tobacco – Golden Yellow
- Azure Blue – Avocado – Coral
- Robin’s Egg Blue – Cayman Island Turquoise – Stormy Grey
The Corriedale I dyed all Amethyst and the Merino I did in Wisteria. Some of them came out better than expected, some not so much. But it’s so hard to tell what the finished product will look like. It’s really cool to see how fibers take up the dyes so differently. I also have to say that Henry’s Attic Superwash really takes color very nicely. I’ll be anxious to see how this all spins up and plys.
I first soaked the fiber in cold vinegar water (1/3 vinegar, 2/3 water) for 20 minutes, then I remove as much of the water as I can from the rovings. I then layed each bump of fleece out in a big ‘S’ shape. I tried to keep the colorways simple by only using 3 colors for each bump of roving. After I made sure the sections were saturated with the dye, I moved the roving skein over to a big sheet of plastic in the sun. I let these sit overnight until most of the dyes were exhausted, then I rinsed them all in luke warm water. Reds and Turquoises seem to take forever to rinse clear. Once these are spun up I will use a shot of vinegar in the water when I set the twist and that should finish setting the dyes too.
I think I’m all set for sock yarns if the ice age ever comes in my life time. I figure I’ll be able to trade warm socks for food if necessary.
I still have pink, blue and green splotches on my legs from our dye day, so I probably should have worn long pants to work today, but I didn’t.
DD and I went to see Don McLean at Boarding House Park on Saturday. The is part of the Lowell Summer Music Series. I really love this venue. The acoustics are really good, and there is something special about sitting outside on a beautiful summer night listening to some good live music. Of course at the end of the concert we were all standing and singing “bye bye Miss American Pie, drove my Chevy to the levy but the levy was dry… ” I cannot believe that not only do I know all the words to this song, but so does DD. I’ve got tickets to see the Indigo Girls and Bob Weir and the Ratdogs later in August.
Sunday, Jennifer and I went to the Knitting and Crochet Show in Manchester, NH. There were so many vendors there and so much stuff it was hard to restrain ourselves. We did find a good deal on Tess Designer Sock yarn. I was so tempted to get one their gradient knit kits, but I didn’t. I also had to come home with some lace yarn, an Orenberg triangular shawl pattern, Lace Addi’s, and a Grafton Fiber bump. The Grafton Fiber bump is gorgeous – it looks like the color of faded blue sea glass. I guess I need to start spinning more regularly.
Only 4 more days until camp!
And now for a little note about karma. My dishwasher crapped out about 5 months ago, so I’ve been doing dishes by hand and I don’t really mind because I kinda like slopping around in soapy water. The pump was shot and the top rack kept falling out of the track, so it was going to cost me about $250+ to get it fixed. Which is almost half of what a new one would cost, so I was thinking about whether I was going to buy a new one, or spend the money on getting it fixed. What do I get in the mail last week? A Recall! It’s a good thing I stopped using my dishwasher because apparently they occasionally burst into flames. So I called the number, verified my model number and serial number and they will be sending me the paperwork so I can get a $300 rebate on a new dishwasher! Put that with what it would cost to fix it and I’m getting a new dishwasher! Woohoo!