Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Hand dyed, Hand spun, and Hand knitted by Me.

Around January, Rebekah and I had a impromptu craft supply swap. She had admired a red blanket that I knit for Melody a while ago, so without her knowing, I sent her the rest of the yarn so she could knit her own. A few weeks later, I was surprised with a box full of goodies: Japanese felting books, felting needles, a bag full of colorful roving for felting, undyed Shetland Combed Top, and part of an embroidery kit.

She originally was going to use the undyed Shetland wool as the stuffing inside felted animals. With 4 oz of undyed fiber on my hands, my mind turned to spinning. So, one night, I pulled out the dye pot and kettle dyed the Shetland Combed Top. It was my first time dying roving and it went well. My fear was that the roving would fall apart as soon as it hit the water, but I was gentle and none of that happened.It dried by the next day, so I practiced braiding it into those pretty braids that you see when you buy roving/combed top.The spinning was a two part process. I had begun spinning half of it and then forgot about it for many months. I finally decided to finish it when I cleaned up my room and unearthed the spinning wheel. This was the thinnest yarn I have spun so far. It's a 2 ply, 395 yards of fingering weight (19 wpi). I was thrilled with how the yarn came out.I knew that I wanted to gift this yarn to a knitting friend of mine, but I thought that knitting her something with it would be even better. Ishbel by Ysolda Teague was a fun and fast knit. It's my first lace shawl project and it couldn't have been easier. I never had a problem with the stitch count like a lot of people on Ravelry. I made sure to keep my markers on the center stitch, which required moving it every so often but I think that helped.I made the Large Stockinette and Small Lace. I really wanted to show off the hand spun and felt that a larger stockinette would show more of the colors.Towards the end of the lace charts, I thought I would run out of yarn and would have to cut out part of the charts. Emily, from my knitting group, suggested I put in a life line just in case. With the life line in place, I was able to knit on with confidence and didn't care if I ran out of yarn because I could always rip back to the life line. Well, it was my lucky charm, because I finished it with plenty of yarn to spare. 395 was more than enough for a Large Stockinette, Small Lace Ishbel.I am going to give this to my friend for her birthday next year. It's at the end of February, so I am really proud of myself for being really ahead of schedule.

Pattern: Ishbel by Ysolda Teague
Yarn: Hand dyed, Hand spun Shetland Wool by me. 395 yards of 2 ply fingering weight. (I had leftover yarn.)
Needles: US 6/ 4 mm
Size: Large Stockinette, Small Lace. 55 inches across, 20 inches from the top to the bottom point.

30 comments:

Samantha said...

Lovely. The color against the black top is great.

knithound brooklyn said...

That is just fantastic! I am really impressed with every step. What did you use to dye the fiber? Such a pretty color!

Rebecca said...

This is crazy gorgeous! The shawl is beautiful, in no small part due to the pretty yarn. I cannot believe what a master spinner you have become. Your friend will be psyched.

Rebekah said...

This is amazing! I am so glad that I passed that roving along to you, because there is no way that I would have been able to turn it into something as great as this!

Amber said...

It's beautiful - wow! I am not a knitter but this makes me want to add yet another hobby to the list!

Rima said...

You are really ahead of schedule! It is a lovely, lovely shawl. I really like the lace part of it.

caitlyn said...

It's beautiful and will make such a lovely gift!

Vicki Knitorious said...

Oooooh, that's so pretty!! Great job!
; )

Micki said...

Look at you go, you dyeing/spinning/knitting maven!

flanthrower said...

Wow! This is just so amazing! I've been meaning to try this pattern for a while and your version really makes me want to knit it now.

hetty said...

Dyeing, spinning and knitting! It's fantastic! And such a pretty colour! Your friend will love it!

bjrest said...

omg it's beautiful.... what an awesome job you did from start to finish. but then again you do lovely work with anything you put your hand to. lucky friend... i'm sure she will cherish it!

LadyTr0uble said...

you are one talented mama-- the shawl is truly made from scratch and what a wonderful combination. Your friend is going to love it.

Julie said...

Beautiful! Lucky friend.

Jackie said...

Ohh...this is beautiful !

CynCyn said...

So pretty! I saw this on Rav, but didn't know you had dyed and spun the yarn yourself! and is that you? you look so tall in the picture!

Jennie said...

Absolutely gorgeous!!!!!

Jeanne said...

Great project - its beautiful and using handspun is a great idea! Lucky friend!

Julianna said...

The shawl is so beautiful! Now I want to make one :)

Hannah said...

Your creations never fail to amaze me. Especially the way that you make things absolutely from scratch... So beautiful, so inspiring!

Stephanie said...

absolutely beautiful! Great work, at each step - the finished shawl is stunning!

sue said...

Simply gorgeous and I love the color too.

Allegra said...

Bravo Oiyi! You must feel so proud making everything to do with this shawl from scratch! It's beautiful! I want to make like 5 Ishbels. I guess just actually starting one would be a good start!

yahaira said...

so gorgeous! I love that your hand was in every step of the process (well not including shearing the sheep :P )

Rachel said...

Beautiful! The color is great!

My Best Friend Calls Me Martha said...

This is GORGEOUS!!! I absolutely looooove the color!

kim said...

Congrats on your Ishbel! It is gorgeous and the color is pretty. I started another one for myself since I miss the one I made my mother.

Agnes said...

So you like spinning. I tried, but found myself not interested. :)
The color is so summer ... like peach sorbet ... lovely!

Ivy@PaperElixir said...

Wow, you're amazingly talented! The finished product looks so delicate and professional :) And it helps to know that you could still enjoy your craft life after having a baby ;)

Natalie said...

*drool*