2012 in wooly goodness

Looking back, it's been quite the productive year...

The knitting/crocheting:
2012 Knitting Mosaic
6 sweaters, 2 toys, 9 items of neckwear (shawl, scarf, cowl), two pairs of mitts, two blankets, one (!) pair of socks, 3 potholders, 10 hats and 2 pairs of felted clogs. This would explain why my handknit sock well is running dry...

The weaving:
2012 Weaving mosaic
7 scarves (the last of which I managed to giveaway before I took a finished picture - help JoAnna!), and 2 dishtowels. 4 of the scarves were given away.

The spinning:
2012 Spinning Mosaic
I think it ends up being 30 skeins total. At least that's what I find going through my flickr photostream. I know there's at least one or two others that haven't been photographed, but we'll call it an even 30. I'm too lazy to go back and figure out yardages though, so you'll have to make up your own numbers.

So what does this tell me? A couple of very important things...number 1: it is perhaps conceivable that I spend far too much of my time knitting/spinning/weaving. Number 2: I need to add socks to the 2013 to-do list. Or learn how to darn. Anyone got any good darning egg recommendations?


There was quite a bit of crafting over the course of 2011, along many different lines and in many new directions. I've gone into many details already, so I thought I'd just offer up this as a visual record.

My creation

I didn't quite get through my goal of 11 sweaters and 11 pairs of socks in 2011, but that's ok. Clearly the world is not going to end if I don't live up to my knitting goals, right? I'm pleased that I knit sweaters for myself and my loved ones. I'm pleased that I spun up some lovely yarns, and I can't wait to knit them up. I'm thrilled that I learned some new skills (thank you Judith!), and that I managed to knit three pairs of handspun socks (now only Ironman is lacking in that department). I'm thrilled to bits with the designs that I've managed to put out this year - two sweaters, one pair of socks (for Sock Madness - I've still got to get the general release pattern out the door!), a scarf and some mittens (finally finishing up the Southwark Collection - got to get that ebook out the door as well!). I spun more during the 2011 Tour de Fleece then in 2010. I started dyeing fiber for the general public (ohmygodwhathaveIgottenmyselfinto?). It's been a really good year on the craft front.

So what's ahead for 2012? I'm not convinced I want to do the whole list of resolutions this time around. I think a sweater and a pair of socks a month is a bit beyond my capabilities, to be fair. But there are some things I would like to accomplish:

  • Dye my little head off and get Porpoise Fur really up and running. I've got ideas for colorways and patterns for certain colorways and so on and so on. Now I've got to get going on the reality. 

  • I've got at least four more design ideas ready to be knit up, and I want to get going on those ASAP. It's a bit tough, since three of them are for summer weather, and it's 45 degrees with 40 mph winds in London today. Makes it tough to think about tank tops, to be honest...

  • Get rid of my stash yarn that I'm seriously never, ever going to use. There's a lot of it. My Ravelry stash (which sadly, does not include everything) is at 53,286 yds of yarn. Holy fuck...that's...that's...that is waaaay to much yarn for one person to have lying around. To be fair, I may have included in that total some stuff that's been used up, but still.  OK, Real Goal #1 for 2012: update Rav stash to be totally accurate and keep it that way. And list a bunch of stuff for sale - good God woman!

I think I'm going to stop there. The grim reality of that amount of yarn is more then a little bit disturbing. I need to go lie down for a bit...

And please, someone out there tell me that's not that bad? 

Looking back...hahahahahahahahaha!

So I went back and checked my overly optimistic list of goals for the year a few days ago, and that maniacal laughter you heard is what came out of my mouth when I contemplated a) the number of days left in 2011, and 2) the state of the list.

Ehem. Here's what I mean:

1. Eleven pairs of socks - well, I've managed nine pairs. Which is pretty good. Two of those pairs are Christmas presents, three pairs were handspun (which feels a bit like cheating since they're thicker yarn). That will have to do for 2011's sock output. Sadly, I'm not sure my supply of sock yarn has diminished in the slightest.

2. Eleven sweaters, including:
3. Pas de Valse - hahahahahahaha!
4. Handspun Vine Yoke Cardigan - hee hee hee hee hee!
5. Rollneck sweater for Devil - done
6. a handspun River Run Pullover - yarn spun, dyed and sweater started I steeked and knit the neck band this past week, although it took me four tries to get the neckband going the right way. I have also steeked and started the first arm, but yarn supplies are getting low. New goal date for finishing: 10 March 2012.

I did end up with eight finished sweater/vest objects. Including four of my own design (to be fair, three of them are the same sweater with a few variations)(beyond different sizes that is!), one handspun, and one for me. I've also got a pile of handspun yarn begging to be turned in to a sweater and at least one vest in the near future.

7. Spin more during the 2011 Tour de Fleece then I did in 2010 (39.4 oz) - 51.3 oz, 2425 yds, check!

8. Get my first full fleece (figuring out what to do with it is 2012's project) - Weeeeeeeeelll...I have discovered that getting a raw fleece in the UK is not quite so simple as pulling up to the local Sheep and Wool Festival* and throwing down some cash. I'm afraid this one might have to be tabled until we return Stateside.

9. Design a shawl - it's done, and the pattern is written, but I need to weave in the ends/block/photograph the darn thing. Thankfully, it's a freebie pattern, and I'm not getting it test knitted (it is dead easy), so I'm hoping to get that out by the end of the year. I've got delusions of a handspun shawl design too...it has been a bit of a design-filled autumn, though: I've released three patterns in the last couple of months, and have a looming sock pattern that needs to go out the door. And there's one more being tested, and a raft of summery patterns waiting to get out the door. Oy! I'm having fun though...

10. Submit a design to Knitty - submitted to Knitty, got rejected. Submitted to Knitcircus, got rejected, submitted to a book editor, got accepted. Heh heh heh heh... More details on that when it becomes possible - knitting the sample for the book is January's project.

11. Design a spinning/knitting project for Ennea Collective. Eh. Didn't happen. I got busy starting a fiber-dyeing business. But I have grand plans for 2012 (see number 9)...

* My spinning group is going "Whaaaaat local Sheep and Wool Festival?????" I know, I know...

Another wool-full year

For the last day of 2010, a round up of the last quarter:

One sweater for me, and one for a gift, one hat (and pattern), three cowls (one handspun), two pairs of mittens, one pair of socks (the first in four months!) and two scarves. Spinning-wise, there was some fiber club singles, merino/silk for one of the sweaters, and the lining yarn for one of the pairs of mittens. There was also a fiber club offering that hasn't yet been blogged (upcoming), and this: the final spinning of 2010:


Corriepaca from Amy at Spunky Eclectic in the Mahogany colorway, bought after my dye day at her shop in August, along with a new drop spindle, which I used for the singles.

SE corriepaca Mahogany

I am possibly the world's slowest spindler, mostly because I forget how easy it is to pick up during a few free minutes and add on a few yards. The singles took me four months (off and on), the plying took one evening (last night).


The top was a beautiful combination of dark maroonish-pink, brown, black, grey and white. Singles were plied at 12:1 on my wheel, and the final yarn was soaked overnight in warm water and Soak. Spun out in the washer, thwacked and hung to dry. I'll update with final wpi/yardage measurements when it finishes drying, which hopefully will be soon.

Per usual, Amy's fiber is lovely to spin and beautifully dyed. I've got a pile more waiting, and I'm contemplating what to throw on the wheel (or spindle) next! I'm also trying to come up with a list of fibery goals for 2011 - there's a thread in the LSG group about 11 projects for 2011, which I like the idea of, but per usual, all the things I'm coming up with are Big Projects. We'll see if I can get it down to something reasonable. I also really like the Yarn Harlot's self-imposed sock club - picking out 12 sock yarns and 12 patterns, and pulling one off the shelf each month. My record with the Knit Love Sock Club didn't work out so well this year, so I've got a pile of sock yarns sitting around to be used up. As well as a bunch of new patterns to work up. So that's another possibility. I'll see if I can't get things worked up for a New Year's day post.

I know that 2010 was a tough one for many people, so I'll end 2010 by wishing all of you a happy, healthy, joy-full 2011!

Quarter Three Output

Right, a cheater blog post for an extremely busy Wednesday:

Annis #5 and #6
Aran Necklace Tank (not blogged because it's not quite wearable yet...)
Two handspun hats
One pair of socks
Norberta (sadly gifted before I took a finished shot)
Mittens for Nana
Girl sweaters

The Tour de Fleece
4! Oz! Challenge spinning
Pencil roving

Now back to the frantic guilty knitting (I cast on for something not on the list, because I just couldn't help myself).