Wednesday, 19 January 2011

Deep Winter is a Cure for Stashbusting of All Sorts

Waking up to less than ideal weather conditions makes me happy to kick around the house in yoga pants and knock things off my to-do list. Every day has been a new craftadventure and I've started so many new projects. It's been fabulous, but I had to rein it in as I was taking over the house in a big way.

I made granola.

New Year 2011 530

Huge batches of it. Ya know, the granola plant might catch fire tomorrow and there will be no more granola in the world for ages but I'll be happily munching away at my own granola stash because I have jars of it. It's easy to make, fun to modify to your liking, and it's much less sweet than commercial brands.

I made pickles.

New Year 2011 535

A trip to the Foodshed Market in Boerum Hill led to the acquisition of some winter treasures. It's an indoor farmer's market that happens every Sunday. There are quite a few food vendors (like Luke's Lobster Rolls, be still my heart) and a few good veggie vendors. Most of the produce consisted of things that loved the cold or could be stored- lots of onions and kale and root veggies. We did find some hothouse cukes and I went to work right away on turning them into spicy pickles. I've made pickled cauliflower a couple of times, but here in New York, they worship the almighty cucumber pickle. I think there are a little sweet, but I added a couple jalapeno peppers in there so they have a pretty hefty kick to them as well.

Despite my constant striving towards vegetarianism, I'm debating signing up for a pork CSA this spring from the Piggery. We do a fruit and vegetable CSA every summer into the fall and we only have to run out to the grocery store for eggs, flour and sugar all summer long. I don't even really cook meat at home, but this is really appealing to me.

Oh, speaking of pigs...I got my AVFKW January club. It's a lovely BFL/silk blend in the most delicate pale pink. And the color is called...Wilbur. I take this as a sign.

New Year 2011 543

What started as a way to repair my own broken bits of jewlery has bloomed into a full-blown beading craze. I've pulled out my bead stash and strung some necklaces, just for fun.

New Year 2011 548

Bry had brought me back these gorgeous stone beads from Tibet years ago. I finally got around to stringing them up and found a labradorite pendant to match. I love when that lightbulb goes off and you realize that something can be stash no more. I'm waiting for an order to come in for toggle clasps so I can make a few more. They are simple once you get the technique down, and I'm fortunate to work close by to several large bead emporiums in the fashion district.

I love glass beads.

New Year 2011 544

There's so many creative possibilities here. I've got a few strands of freshwater pearls that have broken over the years that I've dug up. They are in need of a Chanel-style makeover. I've promised the beau that I wouldn't start getting into metal smithing -yet- but this is a great apartment craft as it requires minimal space and storage.

As for spinning, I've got a huge project going. Remember Cadfael the BFL ram? He's finally getting some attention.

New Year 2011 474

And holy hell, what a pain in my ass he is. It's not a very big fleece, but I've spent more time on this than any other fleece that I've prepped. Not that I'm surprised- I knew this would be like this. Every single little curly lock needs to be pulled apart by hand. It's really time consuming, as there are thousands of tightly-coiled locks in this fleece. If I didn't do this, I would damage the fleece and my carder irreparably. The teeth on my carder would end up looking like Austin Power's in all his toothy glory.

Once I have each lock separated and fluffed, I feed it lock by lock into the carder. Then I card the resulting batt four times to get it smooth as possible.

New Year 2011 553

And it's being spun into a fingering-weight single.

New Year 2011 554

I'm aiming for a worsted-weight 2-ply. I'm clueless on a yardage estimate so far, so I'm not really spinning with a particular project in mind yet.

I've also been knitting. I started a small sock-yarn shawl-
New Year 2011 537

It's the beginnings of the "In the Land of Oz" shawl by Adrienne Fong. It's BMFA Socks that Rock Mediumweight in "Luna Sea". It's very pretty, and not so busy that it will make the lace look like clown barf.

I'm more than halfway done the Spey Valley Socks:

New Year 2011 527

I've also cast on for a sweater, but I don't have pictures yet. Also, I'm upset at myself at my lack of awesome pictures (maybe if I had some daylight and you could actually see things) so I'm taking a photography class just to get accustomed to the bad-ass beast with a lens.

1 comment:

  1. Everyone's been having carding fun lately, including me! It's so nice to see all your stash busting. Also, I think I need to investigate this AVFKW club...