Tuesday, March 19, 2013

While the Sun Shines

I have been on a tear lately. I've been knitting, sewing, cooking, and until disaster struck, spinning (more on this, I promise). I finished the Looped Loop scarf out of my lovely Dicentra handspun. About 2 days after I finished it, the weather warmed up to the point that a heavy BFL cowl was entirely impractical (trust me, I tried).

I'm chugging away on the Sweet Dreams shawl for my cousin. I'm into the beaded lace section, and I'm really enjoying the knit. The lace pattern is simple in this section, but doesn't lack for a dramatic finish. I'm using 11/0 clear square beads, and they look like ice crystals in the lace.

The Springtime Baby Cardi needs only seams and buttons to be complete. I could finish it in an evening. It's been in this state for over a week. Once it's done I promise pictures.

Finally, I've started a Dapple Bolero for myself out of Berroco Remix, color Old Jeans (3927). It's the yarn called for in the pattern, and I just happened to have the exact amount, and need a spring knit for myself.

On the sewing front I have nearly completed a dark grey wool (blend?) tweed vest. All that needs to be done is the final handwork (2 incomplete lining seams and 3 buttons). As with the other finishing work, this is languishing. I've got too much startitis going on too many fronts to actually finish things right now. It's a side effect of the burgeoning spring weather.

On Saturday I visited The Rain Shed and found stretch knits that aren't pathetic! I bought a yard each of a 100% merino 1x1 rib in Magnolia, weight/ sq yard 5 oz, and a 92/8 organic cotton/lycra blend in Palm Green, weight/sq yard 6-7 ounces. The wool is going to be a spring top out of a recent Burda magazine, and the cotton will be this Vogue skirt (pattern 8711).

Also a result of the improving weather, I've been cooking lighter meals. This past Sunday I made a delicious pancetta, mushroom and asparagus risotto. I managed to cook the rice to perfection.

And now, the tragedy of my spinning wheel. I was spinning along, happy as could be, working on my delightful Purple Nebula fiber.

Then, suddenly, the left foot pedal broke. The right connector broke several weeks ago, but I was able to repair it. The left side posed more of a problem, but I was determined. I was on the floor, with kitchen twine, rubber bands, and various other bits to help muddle together a fix. I was almost done when the second connector on the right side, the one that connects the footman to the drive shaft, broke.

Sadly, there's not a kitchen twin fix for this much damage. I'm in the process of sourcing local parts to fix my wheel, as ordering them online would require ridiculous shipping fees (one of the reasons I hate flat fee shipping).

I thought I had a good fix set yesterday after a trip to the home supply store. Wes even gave it his seal of approval.

I was going to replace the yellowed, aged plastic with plastic coated cabling. It has the right amount of flexibility vs. stability, and would last a heck of a lot longer than plain plastic. However, upon taking out the screws (2 different sizes of Robertson head screws, hence the two new screwdrivers that are only good for my wheel) I learned that the screws pass completely through the connectors. Which I can't do with the cabling. So today I'm heading back to raid the plumbing section for appropriate tubing. Maybe that will work better.

I'm foaming at the mouth to get my wheel fixed because this came in the mail yesterday:

It is a lovely Boho Knitter Chic batt with merino, bamboo, tencel, and sparkle. It is a color based on X-Men's Storm, and is part of her X-Men Spin-a-Long. It is beautiful and soft and oh, so sparkly.

I'd like to get this spun while the sun is shining.