Yep, thats my one and only explanation for not being here. I've been spending all my time on ravelry. If you knit or crochet, you should too! Its the best - still a waiting list, but sign up now and you'll be on within weeks. And trust me, its even better than you can imagine!
But enough about that (although you can now see my projects there...). Yesterday, I finished, as in totally finished, the tote bag for my aunt. It had been knitted and felted, and now its decorated and I could give it to her now if she was here! The proof:
Thats the front. And the back:
Adorable, right? This was my first experience needle felting and it was so much fun! I really had no idea it would be so easy and fast and fun. I bought the Clover needle felting tool and mat:
(photo from Betz White, whose blog will make you want to start felting NOW)
And I bought some black roving from new fave Paradise Fibers. Since this was my first time needle felting, I bought stuff that was sold in that section of the online shop; I didn't know you could use any ol' roving. So I bought 8 freaking ounces of this stuff, and didn't even use 1 whole ounce in felting! More like 1/16 of an ounce. I tried to spin it, but it did not go well. Ugh, it looked awful. Don't know if thats me, the roving or my spindle (which I'm beginning to suspect wasn't the best choice for a beginner...).
Anyway, the score is the first three bars of "Simple Gifts' since my aunt sang that at my wedding. I drew the notes and things on with a black sharpie (since it would blend into the notes anyway) and then just pulled off bits of roving, twisted it a bit, and then punched away. The whole thing took me maybe half an hour and it was really great fun. And it looks so cute!
To spin that black roving, I took off the undyed white I had on my spindle. I had used all that fiber up anyway and had to wind it. So I skeined it (sort of) and was surprised at how much yarn I had made! I do wonder if it has too much twist in it; going to have to get a shot of it and ask one of the spindling groups on ravelry. In the meantime, though, when I go back to MI for the holidays, my mom and I are going to Heritage Spinning and I intend to buy a basic, lighter drop spindle and see if I don't improve. I'm still very much in the slubby stage.
Mom's sweater is close to being done. I'm shaping the sleeve cap so I should be blocking the sleeves before the week is over. It would be so great to get the whole thing seamed this weekend. It didn't help that I had to come into work early this morning and the train was so crowded and I just had the worst luck in not getting a seat. So I knit only one lousy row. The nice thing about shaping the sleeve cap is its getting smaller and smaller - unlike the main part of the sleeve that gets bigger and bigger!