AJ knits is weekly fiber crafting podcast. The host AJ has been knitting for about 10 year and crocheting almost as long. Join in to hear what's on the needles and all about AJ's learning curve as a new spinner.
Baby Suprise or "Winging It"
In this episode AJ comes clean as to where on earth she's been, what's going on, what's cooking and what's on her needles.b
Swaps Rock or "Do Zomies have Names?"
i. Great Trail Festival August 25-26 & September 1,2, and 3 in Malvern Ohio
ii. Yankee Peddler September September 8-9, 15-16, 22-23
iii. Old Mill Festival October 12,13, 14
iv. Possibility of Ann Arbor Fiber…. or maybe Rhinebeck….
What’s In my Tea Pot
Juno Regina by Miriam Felton
i. Still on chart three and it seems to be 2 steps forward and three back. After correcting the last error I got the first lace row of chart three complete only to make another error in lace row #2 that I didn’t find until I was at the end of lace row 3. I need to tink the two row but I decided taking a deep breath and walking away was the best think I could do.
ii. I’m back in the in between limbo again. I need to finish Nichol’s B-day socks but I’m procrastinating because she hasn’t tried on Sock 1 yet. I’m concerned the leg might be a bit tight and I’d rather only fix one sock. I have a bag pattern I want to know but it calls for bulky and I have no bulky in my stash! EEEEEEEK! Sometimes I cheat when Bulky is called for and hold a worsted double but I don’t even have the yardage in worsted to do that…. I’ve also committed to a pink baby sweater and I have no pink in my stash… So I’m still figuring out what’s next.
What’s in My Tea Pot
Celestial Seasonings Madagascar Vanilla Rooibus
i. "Harvested from the mountainous Cederberg region of South Africa , Rooibos is a mellow and relaxing herb whose slightly nutty flavor offers hints of cherry and toffee. In our Madagascar Vanilla red tea, Rooibos is perfectly complemented by the rich flavor of another African favorite, vanilla – resulting in a sublime and satisfying tea experience."
ii. This is was a go to tea before I found my Cardamom Black Assam and was introduced to Jasmine anything. With artificial sweetener the vanilla can make it almost too sweet and so a bit chemically. I like sweet tea but I use less than a packet in this. I find the vanilla comforting. So when I caught B’s cold last week I picked this up at Giant Eagle.
iii. I also got an incredibly awesome care package from a listener that I’ve been corresponding back and forth with that will fill the tea pot with new Teas for the next several weeks! When I saw all the teas I squealed and did a dance in the kitchen . B thought I was insane. J I’ve been previewing them at home but will start using them in the tea pot over the next few weeks. Many Many thanks to LittleRedHen! I’m blown away by how awesome this is!
Tour De Fleece has come and gone.
My goal was 2 lbs and I didn’t make it
Portage Lakes or "Happy Birthday Nate"
What's in my Tea Pot
1.Wool fest June 23 & 24, 2012 at Lake farm Park
The Juno Regina Miriam Felton
back from the dead! I sat down with my charts and a stitch marker this week and tinked back the row 3 times before I found the spot where the titch was missing. I picked it up and the lace hole ma be a touch bigger than the rest but I’m back on course and in the beginning of chart # 3. This is slow going because it's not to the point of being social knitting yet. The long easy part in the middle is coming!
The Hitchhiker by Martina Behm
I'm doing a KAL with a friend I met at Camp Kip. We decided back on Towel Day (May 25th for all you non Douglas Adams fans out there.) I chose to knit mine from the Briar Rose yarn I bought from the Great Lakes Wool festival. I love this yarn it has a bit of nylon in it and all the garter stitches shine a bit like beads. The color way I’m using is called Sea Pearl but I had about 6 in m hands and had to pare way down. I could have spent my entire budget in that stall.
The Basic Sock by Patons
One sock down and one to go. I finished the first of Nichol's bday socks. Hopefully I'll get this sock to her ASAP so she can try it on. I'm a bit worried about the length. She does wear a bigger size than I do but I'm nervous I've over shot.
What's In My Tea Pot
A few weeks ago I caught a LOOP update on ETSY. These updates are much like trying to snag Woolmeisse or getting a Phat Fiber box. I was amazing luck because I got stuck at work on managed to get a bat while sitting in the car at Day Care. B was pretty annoyed that mom was looking at the phone and not driving but I got that bat. The bat I got is called Hint of Mint it has lavender purple, hunter green, acid green celery green, hot pink, and mint all in a 5.6 oz of Merino, corriedale, nylon, and angelina. SPARKLE! There's sparkle all through this bat. I'm down to the last of the color progressions I have the last of the hot pin and the mint green and just the plying left to go. I'm pretty sure this will be a n-ply to keep the color progression intact.
I started washing my fleece this week as well. I sectioned two pieces out that would fit into one of the many dish tubs I have and pre soaked them for about 20 minutes in luke warm water. BLECH that was some dirty water. I then put the sections in old pillow cases and tried to do the washing machine method. I don't think my hot water heater gets hot enough to get the lanolin out because after 2 rinses in hot water when the fleece dried it was still very sticky. So I took a smaller piece the next day and soaked it in hotter water from my teapot and some dawn dish liquid. This seems to have gotten it but the fleece is still drying .
In my impatience I did grab some of the grease fleece and test spun some locks. I had never spun in the grease before. I can see why some people think it's gross. But once my hands were already greasy what the heck. I flicked the locks open with a handy dog brush and the spun well. On my high speed bobbin I got a fingering weight single. I need much thicker for my sweater so I'm going to make some adjustments to my counter weight brake and see what I come up with.
The craziness continues.
The work situation is still the same for Joe and I. He got of work this weekend I got to spend Saturday desperatly calling truck drivers. Woohoo!
Last week was Nate’s big 18th birthday party bash. This whole party started out because I couldn't think of something to do that was to immature for him and his friends. So I had two ideas. A city wide Geo cache scavenger hunt or Zombie tag. He picked the Geo Cache so the planning began. I drove around town and picked out 8 spots to hide th
A day with Alpaca and Ewe or Podcasting by Candlelight
Episode 42: Alpaca and Ewe or “ “
Suddenly out of the blue my calendar has filled up with fibery events! Yay! During the winter there really wasn’t much to do but knit and surf yarn on the internet. Spring is here and even though it’s hotter than a 2.00 pistol it’s time to get back on the road!
What’s in the Tea Pot
A day with Alpaca and Ewe
A while back Gloria from Alpaca and Ewe invited me to a podcaster gathering she was having while her Alpaca’s were being shorn (sheared?). I drove down to Palestine and spent Sunday morning with Gloria and family, the Wool Junkies, CA Shearing, and Karen (who I never got a last name for but has a serious eye for fleece grading!)
I got there about 9:30 and the shearing was already in progress. This was a really organized process. When I got to the barn all the boys were in the barn and in the pen. The C A Crew ( April, Pat, Willie and Connie) Had their shearing Table up and Various laundry baskets labeled for various sections of the fleece. The blanket went in one for sure, I’m hazey on the exact labeling on the others. I know the legs were separate as they were more coarse. As the baskets were filled they were sent over to Karen for grading. While the Alpaca was on the table the shearers trimmed toe nails, filed teeth, and checked for health issues. Gail also took the opportunity to treat for Meningeal Worm infections. The animals are sheared in color order from Lightest to Darkest so as not to contaminate the fiber.
Fiber Sorting – I found Karen working on her sorting table fascinating. So I asked her a bit about how to become a certified fiber sorter. She had to take a 4 hr class and pass a test (later research tells me she had to pass with 80% or higher), then she has to sort 200 Huacaya and 50 Suri fleece over the next 2 years. I’m not sure who she’s taking her course or test from but the certification program I found online also requires NC state textile modules and webinars followed by a final written exam and a final assessment. WOW! She made it look easy!
While all this was going on around me I was trying to soak it all in and still appear halfwise intelligent and not give into the urge to hug an alpaca while yelling “ooooooh FLUFFY” My favorite Q and A of the day Q: April, Do you shear sheep? A: NO Cover yourself in Vaseline, veg matter, wool and biting flies on a 90 degree day and see what you think. Plus sheep are shorn on the ground so your standing in poop. I’d rather shear a steer. If I’m ever blessed enough to be in a barn with April again I’ll ask about how exactly you shear a steer. She said something about it being for a show…. But still boggles the mind. Those cowmoons better look out!
Many Many Many thanks to Gloria and her family for the hospitality and the invite. I can’t say enough about how much I enjoyed it. I hope to be able to return the favor someday!
Coming up this weekend… The Great Lakes Fiber Show in Wooster! I’ll be there, the Wool Junkies will be there, some of my knitters from Knit group will be there, and I think some of the Algonquin Spinners and Weavers will be there! Fun should be had by all.
Juno Regina By Miriam Felton
I was casting about for something new to knit on when I saw this languishing in my project pile.
Unfortunately I had to scrap my previous progress. I’m not sure what happened but it looks like a stole the needles leaving it on the cord of my interchangeables and from there I have no Idea but it looked as if the dog had chewed on it. Which of course could have happened but in reality I think it was just jumbles about, may have had a run in with B and came of the cord. It was a snarly mess. So I started over again. I’m throug
Not the Camp KIP recap or Happy Podaversary
I’m semi freshly back from camp KIP. I have so much to talk about regarding camp that I think it’s going to be an entire podcast. SO instead of launching into that now I’ll use this week to get caught up on what I’ve been doing and will recap Camp in depth next episode. I will say this. Camp Kip was absolutely awesome. I had an amazing time and I will be stalking Jackie so that I can do it again. If she woub
What’s in My Teapotbb
Drop stitch Scarf by Lisa Buccellato found in the spring and summer 2012 issue of vogue knitting. Knitting this our of Cascade Ultra Pima.
I think Last week I called this Pima Silk. I shocked my self when I wound the second skein and saw that it’s 100% Pima cotton. No silk…
I finally have this chart for the most part memorized. Which maded me feel brave enough to pack this as my knitting for CAMP Kip. That lasted about ½ a chart repeat. No sooner did I settler into a chair to knit the conversation started and it was really good conversation so I lost my spot in the pattern. Then we decided it was too cold where we were and moved off in search of sun… again I lost my place in the pattern. At that point I put the scarf down. This wasn’t going to work.
Now that I’m home I’ve picked it back up again I have about 3 feet of the six foot length done. I just wound the second ball of yarn. I’m getting antsy I _Really_ want to drop those stitches!
What’s In My TeaPot
Metropolitan Teas Ice Wine Tea
I got this at Warm Glow Candles off of I 70 in Indiana. Not only did they have tons of yummy candkles, they had the best beef brisket I've had in a while and I found tea!
A sweet offering from the originator of Icewine Tea
In recent years Canadian made Icewine has begun winning awards at prestigious wine shows the world over. To make the sweet flavorful treat, Vidal or Riesling grapes are plucked from frozen vines in temperatures below 17°F or -8°C. Brrr! Our fabulous Icewine tea blends real I cewine with premium high grown Ceylon black tea and100% natural flavors. Just like the real thing, our tea has started winning accolades from customers the world over!
A touch alcholic but more floral than anything. Not as boozy as the rum tea. Sweet on its own and very yummy. I drank a pot on my own before bed. (And then paced the floor all night the black tea base packs a caffeine punch.)
The Cotton Candy Merino is off the bobbins and came in at 342 yds of a fingering-ish yarn. I was immediately in love with this yarn so I finished and balled it to head to camp with me.
The intent was to cast on the Wingspan by Maylin Tri’Coterie Designs after I realized how distracted I was going to be at camp this was just the ticket. Short rows with stitch marker telling me where to turn and all in garter! Just what the doctor ordered!
I loved this pattern and I love the way my handspun looks knit up. But as with my last project knit with handspun I didn’t have quite the yardage I would have preferred to have had. My wingspan has 7 triangles and I had to unravel my swatched to finish and bind off. It does fit me but I think I would have preferred to add on a few more sections. I toyed with gifting it to my one of my more petite friends but the handspun is just too yummy.
I will make another one. I keep looking at the ravelry page for this pattern and those projects done in swing knitting are calling my name… and I have some new stash to burn up.
I think I got more spinning done at camp than knitting.
I brought the last chunk of the Nantucket to finish. I would call it about an ounce (It’s the fiber B found under the couch.) I this wasbv sweater I ordered 4 oz of Cormo from Herma
Finally Finished or "Puzzle Blocking"
What’s in My Teapot
Gnome Socks By Spilly Jane
Drop stitch Scarf by Lisa Buccellato found in the spring and summer 2012 issue of vogue knitting. I’m not usually one for pink and girly but I really like this! I’m knitting this from Cascade Pima Cotton in a lovely pinky lavender color # 3710
I cast this on last night and tore through the chart the first time. Started a second round on the chart and noticed that that little chicken foot symbol that I had been reading as an Sk2P (a centered decrease) was in the 1st part of the pattern a K3TOG ( right leaning decrease). . It’s a good thing I was only 1 ½ chart repeats in, frogging won’t be as painful as it could have been.
Knitted Knockers of a Good Yarn Shop
Knitted Knockers is part of Debbie Macomber’s Knit 1 Bless 2 initiative for 2012. I found out about them through a suggestion on my knit groups face book page. The pattern is free and can be linked to through Debbie Macomber’s web site or through www.agoodyarnshop.com
I cast on the second of the pair I hoped to get from my little ball of Rowan Hand Knit Cotton. It’s my night stand knitting. I don’t usually knit in bed but now that we have net flix in the bed room it’s become tempting.
Hexipuff Count for the week.
What’s In My Tea Pot
Lipton’s Green Tea Super Fruit white Mangosteen and Peach
There is no information about the tea on the back of the box!
Ingredients include Soy Lecithin and Sunflower Lecithin. I thought this was a preservative. I found a blog from 2007 with a ton more information on Lecithin and its health properties. Not for the squeamish though as they talk about how Lecithin is made which almost made me spit out the tea. The words “foul smelling Sludge” were involved.
I found this tea unremarkable. I can taste the peach. I have no idea what a mangosteen tasted like so I’m not sure if that’s in there at all. I’ll finish the box but I won’t rush out to replenish it.
Ruffled and Ruched Scarf by Pam Powers
Finished on the day of the party. I was even a bit late…
I think it went over pretty well. Lot’s of oohs and ahhhs over how soft the Alpaca / Acrylic was. I wonder if something like Ultra alpaca or and alpaca silk blend would have received better or worse reviews… would a non fiberphile know to be suitably impressed?
I finally got to knit the flower! Last time I ran out of yarn. My flower ended up being about muffin sized but turned out quite well. The thought was that the flower could be used as an accessory to other pieces when it’s too warm for the scarf. The flower is great but to attach it to a hat would be a pretty big statement.
I still love this pattern and I wouldn’t hesitate to pull it out again for another semi quick gift knit.
Uber Secret Christmas socks
I’m ashamed to say that after Christmas I didn’t jump right on resizing the Uber Secret Christmas socks. They instead languished on the project pile. I tore back the 1st one a few weeks ago and got it the point that I was ready to graft the toe. Then I over thought it and decided I’d better have my mom try them on before I graft it just to be sure on size. Back to the pile it went. I finally saw my mom this week and had her try it on. Nate just happened to walk past as this was happening and said …. “Geez mom… How many months has it been?” He’s great for a guilt trip. I’m happy to say that both socks have been adjusted, the toes have been grafted, and mom can wear them to Camp Kip.
On the wheel
4 ozs of Merino from Copperpot Woolies in Cotton Candy. Still on the wheel Minimal progress so far. I started the second bobbi