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I’ve been fiddling around with the “Create Collage” feature of Picasa. I’ve decided I need to do more of these. I like the idea of documenting the whole process, especially for projects that start out as raw fiber and transition from yarn to finished object. This is one pound of lovely, silvery Gotland. Costume designers for the LOTR movies used Gotland for the hobbit cloaks in the film. I spun it worsted to bring out the sheen, but that was a bit of a tradeoff for softness I fear/ The finished yarn is a bit like twine. The raw fiber feels very much like human hair. The finished heavy fingering to DK weight yarn (ranges from 12-14 wpi) is destined for a raglan sweater that I accept will probably not be suitable for wearing next to the skin. I’m going to do a patterned yoke with some hand dyed BFL from Fiber Fancy. I’m in the process of spinning it up now. I guess I’ll need to do another collage of the whole shebang once it’s done. The Gotland took me a year, off and on, to finish. I hope the finished sweater won’t take nearly as long.

Hat Collage

Elizabeth Zimmermann’s pattern for a tam o’shanter in Knitting Without Tears got me through the very end of graduate school. I knit them compulsively and I still may not be finished. In addition to the three below, I also knit two more which have found good homes. One was to match a sweater I made years ago for my mom. Except the beanie, these are made of handspun yarn whose origin was fiber from dyers on etsy. These hats were a study in color and texture. Manchvegas, from Zarzuelas Fibers (the subtle colored one), is a 2-ply Falkland wool that I spun lofty and full of air. This resulted in a soft, squishy DK weight yarn which I held double to make a warm hat. Slouchy and drapey Manchvegas is by far my favorite one of these. The bullseye-looking one is in a colorway called Agamemnon, a Polwarth wool from Sheepish Creations. I knit it at DK weight so it is lighter and softer. The bright-colored one is a gift from my friend Cyd–she sent it to me after her travels to a fiber fair. It was my first attempt at N-ply, which ended up sort of overtwisted (I’m still learning!) into a heavy worsted weight yarn that will wear like iron. The overtwist gives a sort of felted or velour look to the finished fabric. The beanie I just love. It’s made out of Noro leftovers. I knit it top-down and custom fit it to my head. I may never take it off.