Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin’


You might think from this post that I have a huge case of startitis, but I have a very logical excuse explanation for all of it. No. Really. I do.

First off, I have finally started Mr. Penney’s sweater. More specifically, the sleeve of his sweater.

Paul’s sweater - sleeve

As you can see in the picture, I am using Ann Budd’s book. I am doing the set-in sleeve rather than the saddle shoulder, because the design that I have in mind for the front will probably look better if it goes all the up to the shoulder. I am starting with the sleeve to determine how much yarn I will have to apportion to the other parts of the sweater.

Luckily, before starting this, I knitted another swatch, and the gauge turned out to be 5 stitches per inch rather than 4.5. This was lucky in two ways:

  1. I really don’t want another ripping festival to be going on in the house.
  2. Ann’s cookbook has all its patterns based on whole number stitch gauges, and I really didn’t feel like recalculating everything for 4.5.

According to the book, I will need 1400 yards of yarn for this sweater. I only have 800 yards of the tan color, which I am planning on being the majority of the sleeves and back of the sweater. I may have to add some design to the back in other colors to make sure that I have enough.

On Monday, my September fiber arrived from the Hello Yarn Fiber Club.

Hello Yarn Fiber Club - Maldives 21 Micron Merino

The colorway is called Maldives, and it is 21 micron Merino. What you see here is what it looks like after I did some predrafting.

I promised myself when I joined the club that I would immediately spin whatever came and not fret over what to make of it. It is kind of an exercise for me, an exercise that I should probably take up with me weaving and knitting, because it is probably more of necessity in those areas. (I get more into that later.) My first attempt at spinning the fiber resulted in this:

Maldives first try

Not bad, but thinner than I thought I would ever use (though now that I think about it more, I do use that thin when weaving. Oh well.)

Here is my second attempt and what I think I will be sticking with:

Maldives current attempt

Sorry for the flash, but without it, you would just be looking at shadow. This yarn is a little thicker and a little softer, meaning that it is spinning up a bit quicker, which I like.

Joining this club and spinning things that I might not pick for myself has been a good thing for me, because I have realized a few things about myself (yes, more lists):

  1. I pretty much spin just for enjoyment. I may have a project in mind for the spinning when I start, but if that project ever comes to fruition is not something I really care or worry about, unlike my knitting and weaving. I spin for the sake of spinning.
  2. I enjoy spinning worsted weight more than anything, just because of the speed and the feeling of accomplishment with going through a whole fleece in relatively quick order and still having a yarn that I can use for knitting or weaving.
  3. I am so used to spinning large amounts of fiber at one time, that spinning just 4 or 5 ounces of something is really bizarre for me. Enjoyable, but bizarre.

Thanks for all of the thoughts for my dad. He is home and doing well. I think the hardest part for me now is that I am no longer just around the corner from them, so I can’t just drop by and see how he is doing like I used to when these things would come about. It’s just something I will have to get used to. They grow up so fast….

4 thoughts on “Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin’

  1. I’m so glad to hear that your father is doing well. I love the colors in Paul’s sweater, they go together so nicely. Do you ever knit 2 sleeves at once? Lovely spinning club fiber, makes me think about joining (just don’t tell Mr. Penney!) Is that your Lendrum Saxony wheel in the photo? Please be sure to show us the yarn plied (or finished if it is singles).

  2. When I demonstrated at the state fair I spun about an ounce in 3 hours. I didn’t get many questions and only stopped spinning to predraft more. I’m aiming for a fingering weight Navajo plied yarn. When you talk about being able to spin several ounces in an evening, I’m somewhere between impressed and incredulous. Guess I’m just pokey.

  3. I look forward to watching you knit Mr. Penney’s sweater! It looks very promising.

    I spin mostly for enjoyment too. I rarely have a specific project in mind when I spin, though I mainly spin laceweight.

    And sometimes you just have to bust out the flash. It ain’t not crime. 😉

  4. I just decided I like to spin what I spin. If the fiber wants to be something or some weight then I try to accommodate it!

    I enjoyed reading your blog!

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