New things, old things and some knitting things

After battling a head cold for more than 4 weeks (it’s still not over), I thought I’d gather my phelgmy thoughts and try to form something for a blog post. Since I can’t show my Christmas knitting yet, I thought I’d show a few crafty things, old and new.

But first, some craft fair pictures! Kathryn was at Idle Hands on December 1st, a really fun and funky craft fair in Ottawa. I tagged along to help with sales, starting into my 2nd week of the cold (unbeknownst to me) and had to flee a few times to hide during particularly bad coughing fits. I don’t think I was contagious since Kathryn and her son were trapped on either side of me in the truck during one of them and they are still healthy. Anyway, Idle Hands is a great craft fair, lots of vintage clothing, household items, hand-made clothing, cards, posters and  jewelry.IMG_0523 (2)Kathryn was wearing a sweater she knit with her dyed fingering-weight singles yarn, from a free pattern, Paulie, and I’m in Beeline (I used one strand of sport weight cotton/merino with 2 strands of alpaca lace, the lace brightened up the pastel shade of the sport yarn – and notice the matching glasses). We were both in grey and orange! Great yarny minds think alike!IMG_0531 (2)

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Now for something old, but craft related… This was made by my grandfather and my grandmother for my mother when she was a child. (Frankie approves).DSCF3889My grandfather made this armoire, while my grandmother sewed and crocheted the contents:DSCF3890

He even made the hangers!

There are dresses:


and a coat:


and pyjamas:


and a shawl:


And many more items, all have some sort of embroidery or beading or incredible detail. It survived WWII and a lot of use by certain unnamed grandchildren (some pieces do need repairs or are beyond repair but most are in pretty good shape). Hopefully it will survive awhile longer.

Now for something new! My new toy! Bought with my Christmas cheque from mumsy, from The Fibre Garden in Jordan, ON. I have visited the store but had this shipped since it is a bit far for me. They have lots of great fibre, yarns, and fantastic customer service. I highly recommend them.

I bought a Majacraft blending board! To make rolags!

Wha? you may ask. It makes what looks like hollow woolly cigars or worms. You roll these up and spin from the end to create airy, lofty yarn. It takes some practice though, so I’ll be going through a lot of fibre before I get it just right. It’s sort of like painting with fibre.

First you drag your fibre across the board, you can make stripes or any colour combo you like, add locks or sparkly stuff, whatever. I kept it simple:


You fill it up and brush it down (I’m just using a stiff brush from the hardware store) and keep layering until the board is full. It is a bit of a challenge to get the thickness of the layers even across the board.


Then you rotate the board and from the other end, using two dowels, you pull up and away bit and roll, and pull up and roll gently so that the rolag isn’t too tight. Frankie is curious, the armoire looked promising for a nibble of wood, but these dowels definitely look chew-worthy.



I get about 5 rolags from it:


And then you just take the end and start to spin:


In knitting news, I am almost finished my last Christmas knitting project. I can show it because the recipient (hubby) knows about it and has tried it on as I knit it (top-down vest, yay!). I spun the yarn, a black alpaca mix I bought a couple of years ago that spun up like a dream, and the grey is a jacob/mohair blend which turned out a bit rough (from the mohair) but made a nice combo. DSCF3934But Frankie says, enough of that:DSCF3907I need a bit of loving:DSCF3911So I will give in to my dog (cause I need a little loving too) and wish you all a Happy Knit-Friendly Christmas, and see you in the new year!