The Knit Knack's Blog

my handspinning, knitting, natural dye, weaving fibre home


Happy Holidays!

All odds were stacked against it but this is our happiest Christmas ever spent in Canada.  It snuck into what’s felt like a very tough year, including my day surgery 3 weeks ago.  As family rallied & recovery progressed, I slowly felt the pull of the season’s spirit.  Things have worked out.  In spite of the big worries.

It’s been a tough year for many of our friends, and probably many of you.  Kane, a friend from knit night pretty much summed it up on her gift tag:

Baaaaaa joins the flock at our house.

I am a sucker for all things sheepy.  Surprised?

There’s a whack of yarn, knitting and other fun stuff that hasn’t quite made it to publication as I navigated the past months.  Instead of being all mea culpa about it, here are my thoughts…

  • May your bobbins always be full.

I will allow that Masham wool is majorly fun to spin.  This is top hand-dyed by Waterloo Wools, and spun this week on my Watson Martha wheel with double drive tension.

  • New spindles always help for the rough spots in life.  Even if you aren’t well enough to use them as much as you would like.

She’s a Hounddesign lace spindle from The Fibre Garden.  Their spin-ins are stash enhancing events.  It is 20 g of Pau Amarillo spinning magnificence wearing a little bombyx silk.  Since I was also put in charge of getting some of my Christmas presents, let’s just say a couple more are in transit!

  • When in doubt, learn a new way to knit.

It’s twined knitting, my new love.  It’s a traditional knitting technique from the Dalarna region in Sweden.  Strands of yarn held in the right hand are knit by ‘throwing’ (English) and twisting around to exchange for the next stitch.  This cozy is the Media Case pattern in Laura Farson’s “New Twists on Twined Knitting” book that I found in October.  I also have a new twined hat that is begging for her picture to be taken.

  • Sometimes (even in Canada) the weather eases up on you at exactly the right moment.

A single bloom from the fragrant viburnum that I planted this year.  It looks as happy as I am about the mild weather.

  • Giving to the Spin-worthy is a good thing.

I got to surprise my friend, Teresa with her lace-weight yarn that I spun on two Ethan Jacob spindles and plied on another Greensleeves, a Katherine’s Cup spindle.  It started life as an Alpaca/ Merino/ Silk blend hand-dyed by Corgi Hill Farm, and is now approx. 1,049 yards.

Teresa is a very talented lace knitter.  If you have seen beautiful shawls modeled gracefully and long, black hair is someplace in the photo, then that is my friend.  She prefers to knit and contribute quietly in our community, and I am very happy to call her my friend.  I really am excited to see what magic she will work with my spun-in-the-other-direction lace.  These are also her colours but not the comfort solids!

It also was a hoot to ring the girl’s doorbell early on Christmas Eve morning, and RUN!   DH and I laughed that only a Canadian wouldn’t look up the street before taking the gift bag inside.  A Jamaican’s first thought would be to catch the culprit!

Her thank you is both the best email ever, and confirmation in writing of her spin-worthiness.

Merry Christmas to all who celebrate, and happy holidays for your own traditions.  With a full heart, and love.