Monday, May 21, 2007

Homeward Bound, wish I was...

**UPDATED to include the correct link to Renee Weaves!**

We're not home yet, but taking a few days' rest in the Pacific Northwest. It's been really lovely.

As I said at the beginning of this trip, I am not a car-knitter. I don't get carsick, but I get distracted by the view out the window and can't concentrate on what my fingers are doing. So, I didn't get much knitting done. Until... we got to Mike's aunt and uncle's house outside of Seattle. Not only were we pausing for the weekend (and thus not spending 10 hours in the car!), but his aunt spins and dyes her own yarns (and makes her own natural dyes!), AND has not one but two looms in the house. And she taught me how to spin. We had a lovely morning of listening to the rain outside, spinning and knitting together. She doesn't knit and was very kindly impressed with my Anastasias, while I was so truly impressed with all her gorgeous fabrics, bags, tapestries, and skeins of hand dyed and spun yarn.

She also has a blog! Renee Weaves! She's currently working on a project (with a grant!) on making her own natural dyes, and the blog is following that process.

And, since I don't have a picture of me spinning yet, I'll direct you to her site to check me out in action!

I did get progress made, and am now ready to cast off the first Anastasia. However, I did not prepare for an extended vacation and need a tapestry needle. So I'm stuck for the last two days of our trip without any knitting to do. But just you wait, soon I'll have a finished sock to show you! And maybe some pictures of our trip.


Sarah said...

I've always had this idea that it would be super cool to have a couple sheep when I'm a "grownup" and shear them and do all the carding, etc. and then spin the wool and knit beautiful sweaters. The thing is, it is a looooong process. At one point my parents had two sheep, and we sheared them so they didn't get too hot in the summer. But the gross thing was that their wool was disgusting and covered in poop! Sheep are not clean animals! So I'm not sure if I will ever have enough motivation to have sheep and do all the processing you need to do to get the wool ready for spinning. I do want to learn how to spin though, my grandmother has a spinning wheel and I always thought it looked fun.

Joanne said...

:( "renee weaves" link didn't get me anywhere. Is that the right title?

Renee said...

Third time is a charm! I tried to make a comment a couple of times but Google was having issues at the time so I made a comment on the current post too. I wanted to mention to Sarah that going from "sheep to shawl" is indeed a labor intensive proposition. Spinners who raise their own fiber flock often keep their sheep covered with jackets made especially for the purpose. The sheep breed plays a big part in the quality of the fiber as well. I have purchased raw fleeces and processed them myself but I prefer to buy the fiber already cleaned and carded and ready to spin. More time for spinning and yes, spinning is fun and relaxing, once you learn. Just think of all the wonderful knitting yarn you could make that you just can't get in the yarn shop!