Last weekend I decided to paint some Lincoln wool roving from a lovely, soft fleece that I bought years ago. I don't know if you've ever worked with Lincoln wool, but it has a nice sheen to it that reminds me of mohair. I've never used Lincoln for knitting socks before so this will be an experiment to see how it holds up under wear. I pulled out a bag of fluffy Lincoln wool that I had run through my wool picker and then run through my drum carder. I decided to paint the dyes on using foam brushes, adding various colors until the roving looked like this:
I decided to ply that with undyed BFL that I spun on one of my top whorl spindles. I have one ball done, so I thought that I'd start knitting the socks this afternoon while sitting in my garden enjoying the sunshine.
I like to have an accent yarn for the toe and heel, so while the Lincoln was in the microwave heat setting the dyes, I painted various blue, plum and turquoise dyes on some other roving that I had on hand.
I've found over the past few years that the Smooshy Merino sock yarn that I love so much doesn't hold up very well like the other sock yarns that I've knit with. The yarn feels wonderful, but the heels/toes of my socks are already wearing out :-( Maybe the Lincoln wool will be a suitable substitute-only time will tell. I usually knit a simple rib sock that I like to wear with my boots or my Birkenstock sandals.
I just finished some BFL socks where I played with color in plying. I started out with dyeing a portion of my BFL a medium orange, then I dyed a similar amount of wool a soft yellow. I plied those together on my Matchless wheel at a ratio of 11:1. I just finished the bind off last night and have the socks on my feet this morning :-)
The toe/heel was dyed using a cherry drink mix, then I plied that soft red with the orange to produce this yarn:
Sheila is organizing, so I've been dreaming about what spring postcard I want to create. One day this past week I stopped by my favorite quilt shop, The Quilt Crossing, just to browse. Well, I wanted some bright batiks to continue making hexies for the curtain project for my kitchen and dining room valances. I love to just wander in the store, looking at the new fabrics and samples. I had a stack of batiks in my arms until I saw one of the sample quilts that they had on display and it drew me back. It was a simple, classic nine patch quilt designed by Waltzing with Bears. The pattern is called Pam's Nine Patch Garden and it has flower embroidery in the open blocks that appealed to me. I haven't done any embroidery like that in so long and I haven't made a nine patch quilt in quite some time either. So I walked out of the store with the pattern and some wonderful fabrics to make the quilt with nary a bright batik in the pile. That's okay. I know I'll be back to look at those batiks. Or something else....
I'm off to paint an old birdhouse that I found at the thrift store. And then maybe a nice cycling trip along the Boise River!
Have a great day,