Wednesday, May 09, 2012

Back to the Grind

I am still recovering somewhat from the trip to Maryland Sheep and Wool. I'm very glad I had the foresight to take Monday off from work as well this year, because there was a lot I needed to get done (and frankly I don't blame the Mister for not getting it done -- a toddler can be a handful!). Once I had done a load of laundry, restocked the fridge, and cleaned all three bathrooms, I finally had some time to have some fun with my purchases.

The first order of business was washing some fleece. I decided to start in on the Merino X first because it definitely seemed like the greasier of the two. I managed to get two batches (two lingerie bags' worth) washed up over the course of several hours -- each had two 20-minute scouring soaks and two 20-minute rinses -- and left them on a mesh drying rack in the basement to dry. As soon as they are dry, I'll pull out my combs and see what I can do with the fiber. This is my first time washing fleece, so we'll see if I did an okay job with it, but the rinse water was running clear at the end, so I know I at least got the dirt out.

While waiting for my kitchen timer to go off to alert me that it was time to switch out the water, I did a bit of spinning on my Jenkins Turkish. I'd taken it, along with a small amount of what may or may not be bison fiber, along with me this past weekend and had spun a small amount. I managed to finish the first half of the fiber and start in on the second in really not much time at all, so if I can squeeze in another hour or two of spinning this week, I could ply this up this weekend.

Most of my crafty time since getting back, however, has been spent working on Rainbow's Gramps Cardigan, which seems to be moving along at a rapid pace. I finished the body up to the underarms on Saturday and started (and ripped and restarted) the first sleeve in the car on the way home on Sunday. Right now, I am about two rows away from finishing the second sleeve and joining the three pieces together.

I'm making the size 4, figuring that it will have a little bit of room so it will still fit come fall, but I had to modify the sleeves quite a bit. I ended up casting of the number of stitches for the next size up; I finished the cuff following the pattern, and it was positively tiny! I think this is probably because my gauge was a little off (I was a bad knitter and didn't swatch because I knew roughly what my gauge was with these needles and this yarn) but also because Rainbow is tall! I also had to add about 2 inches in additional length to get the arms to be long enough to reach to her wrists. I'm counting on the sweater growing a bit when I wash it, too (it is superwash, after all), so that it will be just a little more roomy.

Think she likes the sleeves?

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