Sunday, February 27, 2011

Madrona? Did I go there?

Now it seems like Madrona was just a dream, long gone and I'm back to the every day ho hum.... and sometimes not so ho hum of life. Yes there are exciting moments but excuse me for venting but there are days I could do without. When I'm in a mood like that I take a walk at the beach and just filling my eyes with all that beauty seems to soothe my soul.

The sun was shining and the tide was out, the wet sand just glistened.

A couple of pictures from Malibu, California.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Madrona Report

What fun! I had a terrific time but then again what "fiber lover" would not have a good time at a Fiber Arts Winter Retreat?

Seattle my first stop and one more time the sunshine from Southern California seemed to follow me and the skies were clear and the sun was brightly shining on the famous Space Needle. I've never gone up there but one of these days I would like to visit the Space Needle.

On to Tacoma, WA the view from our hotel room. Puffy clouds the air was crisp and the blue skies peeked through. A beautiful day but I was inside taking my first class in spinning.

Fiber preparation by Judith McKenzie McCuin. Wow what a great class! Everything I've heard about Judith was true. She has a wealth of knowledge about fiber and spinning and life, she was soft spoken and gentle and the class was a pleasure.

I sometimes get very "antsy" in an all day class, I get tired and overwhelmed with all the information. Not in this class I was there early and I left late. I really got a lot of great information about how to prepare fiber for spinning. I can't say enough about Judith she is the "Spinning Goddess" and she is very nice.

I got her book with a dvd and brought her home with me. And yes I got her to sign my book and will treasure it in my library.

My Pocket Wheel was perfect for this class and she fit into my suitcase really nicely. BTW there was 3 Pocket Wheels in the class. Here is Judith trying out one of the older Pocket Wheels made by Doug Dodd the original designer of this little gem of a wheel.
".....the Pocket Wheel is 18 inches tall, weighs 6 pounds, and easily disassembles to fit into a tote bag. Ideal for fiber events, spinning in the car or RV, or anyone who prefers a compact ultra-portable spinning wheel."

I'll share more as time permits.......

Friday, February 11, 2011

Project Update

I have named my new Vest,

"FeeFee Swirl"

My sweet, sweet doggie Fee Fee is now 17 years old and she is slowing down dramatically. Each day I can see her struggling with the simplest of things like trying to get up the 3 stairs from the front yard or when she first wakes up her little muscles are stiff and it takes her a minute or two to get going. I can relate to that Fee Fee, as a matter of fact I can relate to the whole aging thing.

As I once heard Andy Rooney say on 60 minutes "I've learned.... That life is like a roll of toilet paper. The closer it gets to the end, the faster it goes."

It is so very sad to see a precious pet come to the end of their life. It is part of nature, we are born and then we come to the end of our life on this earth the cycle repeats. So as I sit here with my faithful doggie right next to me charting out the front of my new vest "FeeFee Vest".

Yes I'm charting this pattern by hand because it just seems easier and kind of relaxing to draw out with pencil and good old fashioned paper. I wonder if there is an app or some sort of chart generator that had been created for this job? An app for my iPad would be ideal. But until I find such it is pencil and paper.

The back is almost finished and I will be steeking it, because it's being knit in the round. The stranding fair isle pattern is just easier to knit in the round.

Friday, February 04, 2011

Scurf attack

Some of you may not be interested in this detail about about fleece but I find it fascinating. What exactly is Scurf? Basically it's animal dandruff. Tiny little flakes mixed in with the fiber. It's a skin condition of the animal, little bits of dead skin. Exactly the same as if we shaved human hair with a slight condition of dandruff.

I bought a pound of this magnificent Mohair soft and wonderful to the touch but when I started to spin it I noticed these tiny little dandruff looking bits. Coincidentally I had just taken a class last weekend at a "Fiber Frolic" I attended and they talked about scurf. Prior to this I had never heard of it or knew such a condition existed. Little did I know that a few days later I would be confronted with Mohair with scurf!

I have eMailed lots of people that I thought could advise me because I really did not want to hear that I should send this pound of wonderful mohair back to where it came from. I like it, I already have some projects in mind for it and so I have a dilemma.

No I don't think Head and Shoulders would help. I did think of it though. The lucky part is that the color is almost the same as the flakes and I can flick, pick or kick them out. But do I want to add this extra work? Dilemma.

See the bag of fleece that is 8 oz, I have 16 oz that's a lot of dandruff. But at least it's not black. I placed a pencil in the picture to give perspective of the size of the little flakes. I'll let you know how it goes.

- Posted by Ana Petrova