Sunday, April 24, 2005


The craft fair was a success, thanks in part to Lolly, who stopped by to say hello and pick up some yarn. It really makes a difference when people we know come by (even if we don't know them in real life!) -- breaks up the day a little, and gives us another fiber-holic to bond with. One of the women working at another craft table also works at Woolwinders, so we got to chat with her a bit about yarn, and she grabbed a skein of our fiery worsted wool yarn, kinda like this one. We glanced over at her table a little later and saw her winding it up, while a friend dutifully sat with the skein draped across her arms.

After both of the craft fairs that I've done, I've been inspired to knit and spin. Last night at Barnes & Noble, I picked up a copy of Stephanie's book, which I look forward to reading for the next little bit, and getting signed at Sheep and Wool. This morning, I worked up a bobbin of rainbowy roving. I'm also hoping to cast on a wine tote later today. Time to restock them for the booth! We'll see what my hands think of Lamb's Pride during the summer.. maybe I'll try em out with Cascade instead this time.

Friday, April 22, 2005

craft fair prep

Last night, I skipped out on the opera (Julius Caesar -- I'm a little sad to miss it, but I'm going to La Boheme tonight, so I will get my fill). I spent a good hour banding yarns and sticking labels to them so that our yarns would be all ready for the Visions in Feminism craft fair:

I like the look of them - not too cluttered (I have a habit of cluttering up any space that I have, both in my closets and in my design concepts for things), pertinent information, descriptions of yarns that aren't too cheesy.

I also made up a little sign to tell potential customers how much yarn they may need for different projects:

How much yarn does it take to make…

A kid’s hat? Sport weight: 160 yards/Worsted weight: 120 yards
An adult’s hat? Sport weight: 220 yards/Worsted weight: 180 yards
Kid mittens? Sport weight: 95 yards/Worsted weight: 75 yards
Adult mittens? Sport weight: 220 yards/Worsted weight: 160 yards
Kid socks? Fingering weight: 200 yards/Sport weight: 150 yards
Adult socks? Fingering weight: 400 yards/Sport weight: 250 yards
A baby sweater? Sport weight: 500 yards/Worsted weight: 450 yards
A kid sweater? Sport weight: 900 yards/Worsted weight: 800 yards
A 6” x 40” scarf? Worsted weight: 150 yards/Bulky weight: 100 yards

I mostly used the Ann Budd yarn guide card thingie, and rounded the numbers a bit. I guess I could double check through some patterns to be sure that these seem accurate.

I'm getting excited for the prospect of craft fairs. I like the prep, I like setting up the booth, I like talking to people about knitting. Selling things would be nice, at least enough to cover booth fees, but mostly, I just like it for the atmosphere, and to justify my new yarn dyeing habit.

Thursday, April 14, 2005

nifty knitting math factoid

So I just learned, although it isn't confirmed by anything, the following: "if you take the gauge of one strand of yarn and double it, then divide by three, that would give you the gauge if you doubled it. So for example - if you're working with Plymouth Encore at a gauge of 4.5 sts per inch, and decide to double it, the resulting gauge would be 3 sts per inch or (4.5 X 2)/3."

I will have to test that formula! It'd definitely be a good rule of thumb to know.

Sunday, April 10, 2005


Lots. Of. Roving.

It's going to take the better part of the year to get through all of this. Part of me just likes to look at it, and would rather decorate with it than spin it...

As it gets spun, there's a good chance you'll find it for sale at with its friends.

I think I may have to get myself some actual spinning lessons some time, so I can learn more about what I can make my wheel do, and not just what it does right now.

Saturday, April 02, 2005

bright and early

The problem with getting up for work at 6 or 6:30 is that it's hard to sleep in past 7 or 7:30 on the weekends. Hence, I've been up for an hour. I've even been productive -- some strange cleaning bug has hit me, and I'm in the process of washing the dog pillows. This required pulling all the stuffing out of one of them, so that I could wash the case. Jasper isn't too pleased about it.

And, for your viewing pleasure, the beginning of Clapotis II -- I'm much farther along, but this picture shows off the color better than more recent incarnations:

Friday, April 01, 2005

a weekend away

I left last Friday for Chicago, returned at midnight or so on Tuesday, and am still in catch-up mode. I can only imagine the aftermath of Daylight Savings Time. I suppose I'd rather have the daylight, though - my biorhythms will catch themselves up.

Clapotis-the-first was bestowed upon my mother as a birthday present. Clapotis-the-second, which I will most likely keep for myself, has just entered the decrease rows. Not much else is getting done right now, because of the above-mentioned trip, but much is going on in my head, re: a small business of my own.

I grew up in small business land. My grandparents opened a jewelry store 50+ years ago and still work there, at 80 and 87! My mom also works there, and I help out when I'm home over breaks, although I'm not of that much use. As a baby, they set me up in a display case under the fluorescent lights to keep me warm as I napped. As a toddler, I hung out under the desks with a German Shepard who served as a watchdog. I've always tried to support small businesses (although I admit that I indulge in the Ikea and on a regular basis). Now that I'm loving the dyeing and spinning (and knitting and...), and I'm possibly going to be moving to an area that doesn't have many yarn stores, I can't help but throw the idea around in my head.

In an ideal world, I will be moving late this year. I would work for the year or so after that at 20-30 hours per week, while also getting a business plan together, and continuing to do craft fairs, online sales (side note: new yarns are for sale at, and general research on fiber. I'd find the perfect, downtown location, not too far from the local campuses, and open my cafe/fiber store, which would also feature other random trinkets that I like... two floors, upstairs sitting room cafe, downstairs shop and coffeebar, airy, spacious... mmm.

In the mean time, craft fair season here approacheth. Yarns to be dyed this weekend, maybe, and inventory to get sorted. We'll be at the Visions in Feminism Craft Fair/Punk Rock Flea Market at the Nyumburu Cultural Center, University of Maryland College Park, Saturday April 23, 1-6pm. There's a $2 entry fee. Should be fun.