Knitting · Pets · Spinning · Weaving

Begin Again?

I don’t know if the era of the knitting/weaving/spinning blog is past or not.  I notice that many blogs have gone by the wayside and wonder if it’s because the blogger just tired of it, got too busy, thought nobody cared, or some other reason.

From time to time I think about resurrecting this blog, but I’ve never really had a compelling reason.  I’m older, it’s harder to try to be funny (though I can’t help being silly sometimes), and I just don’t have as much time and energy as I used to.

But now I look around me and acknowledge the data that tells me that I will likely not finish anything I start.  In the past, it was fun to show my progress on the blog and get encouragement.  Just by knowing that I wanted my photo to show a bit more progress on the next blog post, I was motivated to work on an item.

Last week, a reader of one of my former blogs from many years ago wrote me to tell me how much I had helped her and enabled her, in turn, to help someone else.  That was a heartwarming message, and caused me to further consider the future of Material Thoughts.

So here I am, with Plan B (plan A: knit one thing at a time and finish it, has been declared officially impossible).

Plan B is the Blog plan.  For one month I will commit to posting 3 posts per week.  Each post will contain description and/or photos of my progress on projects.

If I can do this for one month, Plan B will get approved and extended to 3 months.  And so forth.

At my company, we use what is called the Agile methodology to plan and execute how we build software.  “Stories” are written in a specific way.  They have to say what is being done and why, and the why must be measurable, in the format “As a [person, organization or system] I want [something] so that [statement showing value].  So here is my story:

As a maker of things from yarn, I want to write blogs posts 3 times per week for one month showing continual progress on one project from each technique (knitting, weaving and spinning) so that I can make progress on works in progress.

Seems simple, right?  I hope so!

The Project On The Needles

Just started yesterday, Cynthia Wasner’s fabulous Saint Olav and his Men cardigan.  I am using the yarn called for (Rauma Finullgarn) in the colors called for, except subsituting Rose for the Orange. This is the photo from the pattern, since my 1/2 inch of ribbing isn’t very photogenic right now:

Full Disclosure:

I’ve committed to also knitting the Dale Peace Sweater, so I will be posting about both of those projects, which should both progress, but I haven’t received the yarn for it yet, and it will require some design changes so as to avoid knitting fair isle back and forth.

The Project On A Loom

Started last week (after actually finished a class sample), a small Navajo rug of my own design using traditional motifs.  I have two inches of this complete.  The goal of my Navajo weaving is to accept that Navajo weaving goes slowly, to savor the satisfying placement of the colors and the beat of the fork and to delight as the pattern emerges.

This is the design, which I created in Excel:

And here is my humble 2″ start.  The bottom is wobbly because I am a beginner and didn’t secure my edge twining properly.  Next time!

Navajo Weaving #2

The Project On a Spinning Wheel

In line with Navajo weaving, I ordered a lot of Navajo Churro rovings in different colors, from Desert Churros Rovings on Etsy.  This is beautifully prepared roving, not too “rustic” and the shop owner is absolutely wonderful.

I have spun up about a dozen skeins of this so far, on my cherry Hansen miniSpinner, aiming for a sport weight.  I have at least that much more to spin.  The darkest churro comes from Dyers Wool, and it had a bit of dandruff in it (I knew that before I bought it) which is hard to get out, but I hope it comes out with washing.  The dark heathery charcoal also comes from Dyers Wool.

It’s hard to get things washed these days, thanks to the new inhabitants of the laundry room, who haven’t quite attained citizenship in the Greater Household.  Spencer and Katie were adopted last week, born of feral mothers from two different Washington locations.  This brings us up to four cats and one dog.

Katie
Katie
Spencer
Spencer

4 thoughts on “Begin Again?

  1. Well hello! I never took you out of feedly, so I was pleased to see you checked in again! That sweater is astounding, and I love your tapestry. I’ll be looking forward to seeing your progress. And the kitties are mighty cute.

  2. This seems mighty ambitious (3 times a week!) but it did make me think of how far I have fallen out of the habit of writing on my blog. So I will go for 2-3 times a month and we will see how that goes. I can’t imagine making enough progress weekly on knitting, spinning AND weaving (and for you, having a job as well…) Welcome to Spencer & Katie!

    1. Good to see you here Katie, hope you don’t mind us having Kitty Katie too! We’ll see how it goes. It’s fairly easy for me to write, it’s taking the time to photograph and holding myself accountable that is the tricky part. Glad to hear your fires are settling down.

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