Thursday, April 25, 2013

April Costuming and Spinning

Where to begin? This weekend is the Nova Albion Steampunk Convention, in lovely Santa Clara, CA. I'll be there in my usual position - hosting the Tea Room (Called Miss Kalendar's), which is actually the con suite. For those of you not aware of what a con suite is, it's the place where people can go to relax during a convention. There are usually complimentary snacks and drinks. It's not usually anything fancy - potato chips and kool aid or soda. My version has china cups and saucers where we serve people tea (which we brew in pots), silver and other metal trays where we put out cookies and "biscuits." This may be a little difficult in my so-called "delicate condition," but I'm still in my early 8th month of pregnancy, so all I really need is someone to help me carry big heavy things this time.  I even managed a costume, which is at the end of this post. 

But first, because it always comes first, the fibre! Turns out that my newest nesting activity has less to do with cleaning and more to do with spinning. 

Here's the first thing I finished this week. It's a 3 ply of pure wool. I affectionately call it "School Bus Yellow" since that's what the color reminds me of. It's about a light worsted, heavy fingering. I'm quite pleased with how it turned out. There is a good 321 yds of it.  The story behind this yarn is that I gave half of a fleece I'd purchased and paid to have cleaned to a friend. The other half I loaned her to dye. This is part of what I got back, and I spun it up almost immediately since the color made me so happy.

Here's the gratuitous close-up. You can see the three plys and the great yellow and orange that make up this yarn. It's so nice and fluffy!

Here's the other thing I finished this week. It's definitely an "art yarn." This was a lovely greyish purple bat that I mother gave me for Christmas. The bat was full of 2nd cuts and neps, so it didn't want to spin very evenly. After a few frustrating minutes of trying to pick them out and get an even yarn, I decided to give up and let the yarn be what it wanted to be. It was a very quick spin after that. One night to spin, one night to ply.  I haven't spun anything that looked remotely like this since my very first wheel spinning. It was pretty liberating. I'm not sure what to use it for. Perhaps a hat for my mom as a thank you?

Below is the gratuitous close-up.

And here are the gratuitous baby bump photos.
Do not look below if that sort of thing makes you crazy.

Here I am after finishing my 7th month. 

And here I am at 7 months and a few days in the costume I finally was able to scratch together for the convention this weekend. Not featured are the hair piece and the hat I'll be wearing. Those are still to be decided.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Mid April Catch Up! 2013

As most of you have heard or figured out by now, I'm pregnant. To be more specific, I'm just under 28 weeks pregnant. That means I have just over 12 weeks left.  It's been a real journey for me. There are a lot of things that you have to deal with and worry about as a pregnant woman that I had no idea about prior to living through this.  One of those things was how much time being pregnant was going to take out of my crafting life. I expected that being a mom would do that, but didn't think I'd lose most of the 10 months prior.

So, please know that this paltry offering of finished projects for March and Mid April are not due to slacking - well not ENTIRELY due to slacking. It's just harder to get stuff done when you fall asleep or become a zombie after work. It's a struggle just to make dinner and make sure I have clean clothes to wear to say nothing of proper nutrition, blogging, podcasting, knitting, or working late hours.

But I did finish a few things - and here they are!

Finished Objects March through April 10, 2013:
  • 2 rainbow car seat blankets, 1 for Lena and one for Amelia, congrats on being born, kiddos!
  • ALL the blanket squares for Angela! (I only got a photo of some, but in all, I managed to get through something like 30, which finished the project)
  • Socks for my husbean
  • A blanket for the nice couple in our birthing class who are having a girl in June :)
  • Merged Guest Room into my Fiboreum AND cataloged all my yarn and fiber. This took almost two weeks of evenings and partial weekend days.

 2 Rainbow Car Seat Blankets:

Here's the detail on what they look like. They were made by striping 1 skein of rainbow colorway with one colorway that was greys and lavender.  I believe the yarn was chroma...... This technique is one that is commonly used with Noro, but Noro was not the correct price-point or care needs for newborns.

Here are some of the mitered squares I finished. This was the second batch of what I finished since I'd already deployed an earlier set to be delivered to the recipient by a friend. This will make the 3rd installment.

 This is a pair of socks I finished for the husbean. They are made with leftovers from two different pairs of sasquatch socks - note the different color toe detail.

Here's the recently finished baby blanket, another gift. This one is for the lovely couple who is in our birthing class. We've finished 7 weeks so far, with 5 to go. They are a really nice couple. The husband works in tech, and is Indian - and he's the one who clued me in that wearing some of my Indian clothes may be more comfortable during pregnancy. One time he brought his mom, which was great. The woman is a teacher, and I think she even teaches in our district. They are giving their daughter a great Indian name.
Lastly, here are a couple pictures after the great Fiboreum cleanup, re-org, and cataloging.

This pic is of the closet, newly re-org-ed. It still looks messy, but it is head and shoulders above where it was before. Trust me on this. Plus, there are a bunch of fleeces you can't even see because they are piled on the very top "shelf." I'm considering that to be deep stash since I can't get to it easily.

There are also now 6 under-bed containers under the guest bed we've moved into the room. They are a little wider than the bed, but what can you do?

I also managed to go ahead and label a lot of items that weren't labeled. And then I made a new scrap bag - which is now mostly sock scraps and unfinished skeins since I made that huge scrap blanket last year. It's really exciting to cataloge all your stash. I feel newly inspired by some of the simply gorgeous stuff that I had and had either half-forgotten or just not remembered how gorgeous it was. This project also got me back on my spinning wheel because I was so inspired to spin more after touching all of my awesome handspun. I'm really looking forward to making things with my handspun. I only have enough to make full garments with plain fleeces, so now I'm beginning to think how  can mix and match my dyed stuff. It's so exciting.