sock porn for knitting voyeurs.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

rhyme times sampler from the bellwether

I really love the spinning blog posts I read that tell a story from fiber to yarn. Most of my spinning lately's been taking from the (burgeoning! I need new storage solutions!!) fiber stash and finishing before I remember to take pics, not spinning something that I've just received and not shown pics of in fiber form yet. This one does though, kinda :)

This week's spinning started with my new subscription to the Rhyme Times.


The Bellwether sells something truly awesome here-- a year long subscription of samples of the new batts and roving in stock from Crosspatch Creations and Three Bags Full. I ordered the "starter issue"-- so I received samples of both the new releases and samples of all of the fibers that have at least a lb in stock... there are a lot of fibers here!! Subscription to the sampler gives you first crack at the new fibers before they're released on the website, and mine also came with special pricing availability for new testing fibers as well.

Along with the lovely sample cards of fibers came a newsletter and written descriptions of the contents of each blend which is awesome-- if you were anyone else I'd be embarrassed to share how much time I took matching each sample up to its written description, waffling between favorites and trying to feel the difference in fibers between my fingers. Having them all written down and in front of me (as opposed to clicking around on a website, or even inspecting bags of fiber in person) is ideal-- you just pay more attention to the contents and different fibers that may not jump out at you on first glance, getting a much closer look the second (third, fourth, fifth...) time around. I'm toying with the idea of spinning them all together into one crazy short striping skein and making something with it... I was thinking a hat but a sampler kerchief may be the way to go. We'll see (I really like my silly kerchief though!!) :)

Amelia also sent samples of her California Red wool roving (not the elusive all-red sheep that is looking like it doesn't exist, but an oatmeal one streaked with red hairs throughout), and a sample of a Crosspatch Creations Signature Blend batt in "eggplant." There was only 4 oz left of the Eggplant in stock, but I rushed to order it loving the deep purples and the shine of silk in that little sample she sent.

(inside and outside of batts)

Lately I've been buying 8 oz of fiber at a time, afraid 4 isn't enough for not-sock projects... but I took the advice written on the bag to "spin thinly to bring out the different colors and silk...


Lace thin probably isn't what they meant, but it works for me :) This is only half of the batts, the other half I'm still spinning. Early on I tried to decide if I wanted to ply this but obviously didn't-- my thinking was that even plied, it still will be a laceweight yarn and I'll have half the yardage, and I don't need a super sturdy yarn for a lace project (and the fact that this doesn't feel like a weak, break apart yarn on its own already). Right now, this skein measures at about 515 yards-- so here's hoping the next and total will be around 1k for a decently sized lace project.


The texture of the batts [made of "wool (Zion, Connie, Jacob and Maurine-- all Corriedale crossbreds from my flock), Tussah silk, Bombyx silk, Viscose, cut Bombyx silk and Tussah silk noil"] means it's a textured yarn as well as a crazily colored one. I love it (seriously!!) but don't know what kind of lace project would be best for something that looks both rustic with its noils and variation in spinning and almost wild jumps of color. Just something to think about since I will want to knit a largeish lace project out of it, someday-- you know, when I get over my fear of yo's :) (Not *that* yoyo tho, she's famous don't you know ;))



I just love that I "know" the sheep that provided its wool for my projects, and it almost seems like I know the women behind Crosspatch Creations and Three Bags Full just by looking at the colors and reading the descriptions of the blends they've come up with (and I get to sample thanks to Amelia and The Bellwether!)

Despite the fact I was "only" able to buy the last 4 oz of the eggplant colorway, I did find 8 oz of some Three Bags Full roving in "flight of the dragonfly" hitching a ride into my fiber stash as well...


My photos don't do it justice... overcast etc etc (though i did manage to accidentally get my feet with the new tsubo vosa shoes in there!), but I knew exactly what I was getting with the Rhyme Times sampler and I am not disappointed-- so beautiful. I'll be sure to take better pics once I start spinning this, you'll agree with me for sure :) Check out the tiny sample yarns that adorn the bags (they're sealed with something more sturdy beneath)-- it's a finely spun sample of the fiber within the bag. So cool... I wouldn't have thought to spin this roving thinly, but it'll definitely be on my mind now after seeing how the samples spun up. And I just like seeing other people's spinning in person, too :)

Off to go work on the remainder of those batts, have a good one! :)

ps! i've finally started to update my zero stitch marker shop with new freshwater pearls and semiprecious stones with more stock to be added every day-- and I also have a few sets of pressed amber nugget markers set aside for those of you who asked me about them prior and have been waiting patiently for me to find them again. i think i've contacted everyone thru etsy about the ambers, if not please convo me so i can save you a set :)


margene said...

Crosspatch batts are so much fun to spin. A friend just gave a pretty batt of pink and black which looks like a blast to spin. Your singles are gorgeous and will make a very excellent shawl!

Janis said...

Yay, more fiber resources!

I was curious what you meant about California Reds though. When I saw them at the local sheep and wool show, they said the juveniles were all red and their fleeces lightened as they grew older. Juvenile California Red

Sabrina said...

That is some seriously pretty yarn. :D *goes to stare at screen some more*

Sarah said...

Love it.

I spun a big old bag of a Crosspatch batt a while ago, they're so much fun to work with.

The fiber to yarn posts are my fave too :).

Chelsea said...

I'm so sorry to invade your comments like this, but I couldn't find another place to email you. :) Do you happen to have the pattern for ".bmp" as a Word file? I'm so sorry to bother you! I can't print out anything right now b/c my printer is misbehavin', but I can modify it to work in a Word file. Thank you for your help! :)

Anonymous said...

What a cool idea, to get a sampling of different fibers and blends! I love your laceweight spinning, all those pretty little bursts of color. Can't wait to see what you knit up with it.

Donna B said...

I have subscribed to the Rhyme Times too! it is such fun! now your temptin' me to actually order something....

Anonymous said...

I have to say: you're a beautiful soul, and it's reflected in your art.

Anonymous said...

Hiya, I've just subscribed too!!! Hehehe... you'll soon deserve the name of Queen of the Enablers :)

As for a shawl I would go with something. Do you have the Folk Shawls book? In there there's a few shawls that would look great with this funky yarn... like one of the Islandic (or is Faroese) shawls or even the ones that fall under the American Heartland section. Lemme know if you do not have the book... I have it twice and am willing to get rid of one of the books :)

Cheers Eva - sweetpea at sweet-p dot net

Stacey said...

all those samples - I love and hate stuff like that - I love looking at them all and imagining the possibilities, but I hate deciding!! :)

Amelia of Ask The Bellwether said...

SimpleKnits has a great shawl pattern list for a huge variety of yarn lengths, from 100 yards on up to 1300+ ...

And I'm very glad you're enjoying the Rhyme Times ... my prettiest sampler skein is a bunch of their samples plied against a natural light brown CVM. Yummy!

lexa said...

The sample fibers are a cool idea. Every time I see your spinning I think, "I should really try that." Maybe after Christmas. :)

Anonymous said...

I got a couple of those batts at Rhinebeck! I want to spin them up, but it's so fun to just unroll them and pet them. I love the singles that you made. Very nice!

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