Saturday, February 28, 2009

What's done drying...

I'd forgotten how quickly my roving would dry when I set up the box fan... Friday's playtime items are dry already.

Beth's Roses in SW Merino/Tencel

And I'm not sure about what I'm naming this one. I want to name it Calico Cat, but Chasing Fauns also appeals to me. What do you think?

Thursday, February 26, 2009

High School Days is up!

Finally, new roving to list on my shop!

Our school colors were maroon and white and gold, but we also were practically right on top of a taconite mine, which gives off this rust colored dust and gets pretty much everywhere. The colors in this roving reminded me of that.

There is more drying for tomorrow, so stay tuned.

Social Networking may be your downfall...

This is a true story, for the most part, but I'm changing some names because it could blow up in my face really easily. But it's something that I need to say, because it's going to bug me for a long, long time.

Martha (not her real name) has a blog. She's a pretty accomplished knitter, so not only does she have a blog, she sells sweater patterns through some of the big yarn shops and has a book out, with another one about to be released. Then Martha makes a big boo boo.

Martha decides to host a giveaway on her blog. She gives folks 24 hours to put their reply to the blog post in, and she'll pick a winner. Martha has a lot of readers, so the replies come pouring in. Practically hidden among them is a reply from a young mother who (and I quote loosely) makes a *suggestion* that when Martha runs contests like these, to maybe add more time so that busy folks have a chance too.

Was this rude of the young woman? No, I don't think so. Phrased as a suggestion, and put forth in polite terms, she was well within her rights to make the comment. Martha didn't have to follow it, she didn't even have to read it or take it seriously. She could have ignored it, or possibly explained that the giveaways on her blog are for her loyal, rabid followers who can't wait to hang on her every word.

Did Martha do this? Oh, no... she did not. Instead, Martha moved over to a social networking site, Plurk. It's much like Twitter, but with a more generous character count in postings, a timeline, and threaded replies. On Plurk, Martha complained about this comment. The resulting replies from her followers can only be described as a rabid, catty display of ugliness. The "F" word was used repeatedly as a verb. I can only hope that this poor woman who commented on the blog post was NOT also a follower on her Plurks, because if it had been me, I would have been crying.

As a result, I have decided to stop following Martha's Plurks, stop following her blog, and although I own several of her patterns, I won't be buying any more of them in the future. Nor will I purchase the new book when it comes out.

Was Martha within her rights to not extend her deadlines? Certainly. I have no problem with that. It was the catty, vicious, behind-the-back shredding of one of her readers that offended me.

As a blogger, I feel that each one of my readers is precious. These people choose to listen to my ramblings. It's damn hard to find someone to *listen* to you these days. So to semi-publicly humiliate them would be a horrific mistake. I may not be a published designer, and I may not have the following that Martha does, but I hope that if I ever *am* in that position, I will still appreciate each and every one of you.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Fiber is here!

FINALLY! I'd have a picture of me rolling around in it, but then I'd have no way to hold the camera and do that.

Have not blown up yet!

Fuel came for the butane torch yesterday, and I broke it in by soldering the tops of the earrings that have been sitting on my bench waiting for just that procedure. I'm not controlling the size of the flame as well as I'd like, yet, but then I didn't want to play with it a whole lot, if you know what I mean. See yesterday's post if you don't. :D

Got my outstanding UPS tracking numbers for incoming packages mixed up, and it looks like my roving is coming *today* instead of tomorrow. Tomorrow's package is a sampling of storage options for beads. I'm pretty excited... so excited in fact that I already have my dye table set up and my scale out, just waiting for the knock at the door. Hey, I've been out of blank roving since *Friday*. I'm getting itchy fingers. C'mon UPS man!

Monday, February 23, 2009

Emerald City is up!

Dusted off the very-lived-in new workbench this morning, and photo-taking commenced. Now I just have to wait for my weak camera battery pack (I really need to replace that thing) to recharge before I can get to the new stitch markers.

Didn't it turn out pretty?

I'm having trouble with white balance now that I'm not just plopping items on the scanner. On the plus side, my turquoise colors actually look like what they should.

Checking the My UPS page, I see that my new jewelry supplies are coming in today (yay!) but my new blank roving is not coming in until Thursday (boo!). I was pretty good over the weekend, spending-wise. I only broke down and bought one shiny new tool... a cordless dremel. And the only reason was we were in Walmart getting shop towels, and it was cheaper there than through Amazon.

The jewelry supplies not only include more wire sizes, but a butane torch for soldering at higher temperatures (and with a finer tip!) than I could manage with my old soldering iron from my stained-glass foray eight years ago. The tip on my old iron is HUGE. I'm a little nervous about the torch. It gets up to 2300 degrees F.

When I was a child, maybe seven or eight years old, I remember going to bible school on Sunday morning. We were doing some kind of craft thing. I don't remember what it was exactly, but I do know it involved candles, because I caught my hair on fire. I remember starting to take off running down the hall (possibly in search of my grandmother) in a blind panic, when my wise great-aunt Donna grabbed me by the arm and slapped the side of my head. A trim of the hair, and I was fine.

I've been in the Army, fired an M16, a rocket launcher, and worked with tools designed for tanks, but fire still makes me nervous. I don't care if it's the equivalent of a very hot lighter, I still have visions of it somehow blowing up and sending schrapnel everywhere. BUT... I'm still going to use it because it's the only way to do a proper job.

I will definitely be putting my hair up, though.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Tentatively titled...

The very last, last two bits of Merino/Tencel I had left in raw stock before my next shipment arrives next week is in the rinsing stage right now. I've temporarily named them "Emerald City", but that is subject to change. When it dries, it may have a completely different character/feel to it.

I'm working up the nerve to do some videos for YouTube, mostly spinning, jewelry assembly, and possibly some dyeing. I'd be a one-woman show, so fancy things like zooming in on detail would be impossible. I'd have to set up the camera, and just remind myself not to move out of frame.... that, or shoot my own B roll and intercut it later. When and if I do this thing, it will be announced here for sure, on Plurk, and on Twitter.

And wow, I went super-linky yesterday. Please rest assured that was an over-enthusiastic wish to share my lovelovelove for Joss Whedon's work, and probably won't happen again... at least not until next week. :D

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Holding pattern

I'm in that tenuous situation where I have raw stock on its way in via UPS, but I'm itching to do something. After doing housey type stuff (cleaning out the fridge, menu planning, making a grocery list and fetching said groceries) tonight I settled in to watch the second episode of "Dollhouse" (which gave me some damn chills in spots, let me tell you) and make some stitch markers. They will probably go up tomorrow, if I feel like cleaning off my bench for photography. Otherwise it will be Monday.

"Dollhouse"is already shaping up nicely. I will not gush on and on about how much I love Joss Whedon, but let me just say it's a shame he's stuck on FOX on a Friday night... again. I mean when Eliza thumped her shoulder right before the zoom-out, brain-erasing blur thing, I got frikken goosebumps. And it's nice to see the cop-brother from "Journeyman" working, even if he's playing a dick. Yes, I said it. I don't have much empathy for someone who screws around with an innocent mind, even one that's packaged in an adult.

Speaking of "Dollhouse" , Amazon's Video on Demand service has it, listed under FOX. I've set up a season pass for "Dollhouse" and if you have the means (and the love for Joss that I do) I suggest you do the same. I may not be a Nielsen family, but I can show my love in sales numbers. They also have Dr. Horrible, if memory serves, but the DVD has the awesome sung commentary, so I'd highly recommend picking that up instead.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Not today, Zerg!

No long post about the neighbor guy's insights on TV today... while there was a lot of good information in that conversation, it's really only applicable if you're in my situation. Meaning a tiny apartment with crummy cable service.

Life is good today. A monetary windfall allowed me to place my fiber and wire orders early, which means they'll have an extra day to ship out. Stoked! Paydays on Friday really suck when it comes to getting your money's worth on shipping. There's simply no point in getting free two-day delivery if the weekend comes in the middle and messes it up. I think this will be my last year of Amazon's Prime membership too... same deal.

I also got to order more of the fancy fibers than I was planning, too... that great bamboo and tencel that people seem to love. Three pounds of each! So we'll be neck-deep in pretty fluffy stuff. Squee!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Did you lose your TV?

Yesterday was the old cutoff date for analog to digital conversion of all broadcast TV signals (the date was extended due to the economic crisis, but a lot of TV signal providers chose to follow through yesterday anyway, since they'd been planning for it for two years and had already paid for promotional materials that it was too late to update).

I find it interesting that there were people caught in the switch, anyway. Are you one of them? Unfortunately, the money that was subsidizing the free boxes has run out, but when a bit of the recently-approved economic stimulus money becomes available, the coupons should start re-appearing.

I had to take a break in the middle of writing this, and take my daughter to the school bus. I stayed for over an hour after the bus showed up to talk to my new-ish neighbor in another building who works for a satellite TV service. He's a very knowledgeable fella. I may have a whole separate post tomorrow about what we discussed.

On the fiber front, I am out of raw stock! I will have to wait until Friday to order new stock, as well, because I'm not going to be cheaping out on it this time... no big work station to pay for. :D I plan on getting several pounds of 64 count merino, SW Merino/Tencel, and Merino/Tencel/Bamboo, so expect new and colorful things in about a week and a half... raw stock always ships slow.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Why would anyone choose to be ignorant?

My favorite bread people, King Arthur Flour, emailed me a link to a delicious-looking no-knead pizza crust recipe. The recipe calls for the mixed dough to rest at least 16 hours or overnight above 72F. Upon posting a link in a forum I like to hang out in, someone asks "But isn't that dangerous?" *sigh* People love to take a tiny little bit of information, and apply it across the board to everything... without educating themselves further or finding out the facts. In fact, there are yeast sponges (which is all this dough base is, basically) that are *hundreds* of years old, kept alive at room temperature and fed new flour occasionally. Ever had New England sourdough? You've had a dough made from a portion of one of these old dough sponges, kept as a tradition (and because they taste frikken awesome).

This morning my neighbor (yes, *that* neighbor) decided to tell me a story about her oldest daughter, and how she called her last night crying because the daughter of the woman who has been housing her while she finishes school is "into wiccan". I looked at her, waiting for the rest of it, non-committally. "You know what that is, right? That's like... devil shit!" she says.

I will not go into all the other ways that this family has displayed its narrow-minded bigotry. Let's just say I feel sorry for any african-americans they call their friends. I should have known better when I found out they keep ONE book in their house... the bible... and that's all they'll read. It's not that anything else is forbidden, it's just that they're not really interested.

People who won't read other points of view, who are so intolerant of other views that they condemn them without really knowing all the facts, make me crazy. Why would you limit yourself in such a fashion? Why choose ignorance??

No, I am not wiccan... I'm not really anything, truth be told, although I was raised Lutheran. But I've made a point of studying several different world religions, including wicca, judaism, LDS, and Scientology. Purely out of curiosity and interest. Did you know that Christmas, Easter, and Halloween were originally pagan holidays and were co-opted by the christian church because they had a hard time recruiting followers who would give up the old holidays? Fascinating stuff.

But as I stood there, listening to my neighbor talk about "that evil, devil shit" I just thought "What would she do if I told her *I* was wiccan?" I mean, would she finally stop coming over to sponge off of me, or what?

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Maenad is up!

Finally up, what is probably last in my "True Blood" themed series of rovings. Without giving too much of the plot away, we will most probably be meeting one in the second season of the show, if the plot of the show follows the books as closely as they did in the first season. Seriously, if you don't want spoilers, don't read the books... they did a really good job of remaining mostly true to the books in all the ways they could on a show. **Ironically, as I was typing up this blog post, someone bought out Maenad, lol. Sorry folks, I'll be trying to re-create it, no worries.**

In other news... not much. I received a used book through the Amazon Marketplace from one Miss Violet (proof that Plurk and other social networking can be a sales tool of the highest order) that looks to be very inspirational to me jewelry-wise. The awesome part of this transaction was that I already had this book *in my shopping cart* at amazon, waiting for my next allowance/payday, and this way I got it at a good chunk off. Amazing. And it's in exceptional shape... it looks like Amazon shipped it to me. It's dinged in one corner, but I blame that on my postman, who bent the book to fit it in my tiny apartment mailbox.

Oh, and I heard back from that Mom n' Pop website I ordered the wire from, and got a tracking number for my wire. I will probably be ordering again.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Who was that whiny person?

I don't know who that lady was who posted yesterday. It's possible it was the same lady who is posting today, but with a worse attitude. :D

It's amazing what a good night's sleep will do for you... I slept so well, that I woke up a half an hour before the alarm this morning (which is practically unheard of). My *back* isn't too happy about it, but it's a trade I'm willing to make.

It also helps that I found a very inexpensive supplier this morning for brass wire. It's one of those "Mom n' Pop" type websites, though, and this will be my first time ordering from them, so I'm a little nervous. Hopefully this will turn out to be a reliable, inexpensive supplier. Cross your fingers!

I also got some knitting done last night for a change, which I have yet to plug into my yarn meter over there on the right. I'm making slow progress on the "Amused" pattern from Knitty in some leftover Delft Heather Swish. Yes, I am knitting from my stash. Don't fall over in shock.

I also made some progress on my painting, such as it is. I prepped the canvas the other day, and got the background laid out. It's been so long since I worked a canvas that I'm nervous about screwing it up. I'm using acrylic, since these days I'm worried about the toxicity of my mediums... my work space is just way too close to the kitchen for the really nasty type stuff. My grandmother is way allergic to oil paints and their thinners, so that's just enough to make me say "Hmmm... sticking with the safer stuff, thank you!"

Oh, and I managed to get 3 dozen cookies and 3 dozen valentines made yesterday. The cookies were severely depleted by two culprits who live here, and I'm not one of them. So it's a distinct possibility I'm baking again today. I'll have to survey the damage and make a call on that later. :D

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Economic woes

I talk a big game when it comes to what I want to do with my business, what my plans are, and what I spend its money on... the real trick comes with the execution. Despite good press, and very nice feedback, sales are dwindling right at the time when we could use them the most. All plans will have to be put on hold.

It sucks that what I'm really good at is providing, essentially, what are considered luxury items to hobbyists. Hey, if I could produce a really good fuel-efficient economy car, I would. I don't think that's an item I could sell on Etsy, though, even if I could produce it.

I was hit with wave after wave of depression yesterday. I received two fiction novels (my *only* purchase for myself this payday) at noon, and had finished them *both* by the time midnight rolled around last night. Yeah. That sucks... mostly because I will probably have to wait weeks to get another book. All our old books are in storage, and all I have here are non-fiction books I've pretty much read through several times and have absorbed all the knowledge I'm going to get from them.

So I'm stuck here in this really sucky reality where we have to put items back when we get to the checkout line at the grocery store (possibly the most embarrasing thing you would ever have to do) because the total is *way* higher than what we were expecting, and in all the commotion you accidentally leave the three boxes of Valentine's cookies for your daughter's school party at the store, and your husband is too proud to go back with the receipt to get them. And we knew we weren't going to be able to afford the cards in the first place, so now I have two days to make three dozen cookies AND three dozen valentines and have I mentioned how much I HATE deadlines? For ANYTHING?

I would dye or make jewelry, but I'm stuck in a color rut and the experts I asked said that it's best to take a break from the dyeing when that happens. So that's out. Jewelry I'm stuck because four different suppliers I order from are out of brass. Just completely out in any gauges or shape that's useful. And there is no WAY I'm going to try to push sterling silver out in this economy. Silver prices are just way too high. So that leaves copper... and there's only so many color stones that look good with copper, and only so many people who can *wear* copper. It's really not a viable option either.

So how's *your* week going?

Monday, February 9, 2009

What's coming next...

Interestingly today, just minutes after my new order of blank roving (64ct merino and a merino/tencel blend) showed up, I get an email from one of the minions over at the Lime n' Violet podcast website, and I was mentioned in their "Yarn Porn" segment! I *know*! How awesome was that? And they had such nice things to say, too.

But the best part? They pronounced both my user name and my shop name correctly. Like, nailed it. If there was an olympic judge scoring it, it'd be 10s across the board. Yeah! And believe me, there are many ways that people can screw those up. (It's a good thing I didn't use my other favorite user name, Diela... nobody ever gets that right).

So anyhoo, now with the shop bench up and getting seriously "lived in" the next plan (besides more roving, and jewelry) are more tools that I have been waiting for years to buy. A cordless Dremel tool, with all the accessories I can use, which includes a workstation that turns it into a mini drill-press, and a bench vise that will hold it stationary for those times I need a mini bench grinder. I am also going to invest in some serious amounts of wire in larger gauges, since I want to move into hair sticks and shawl pins.

If we get a decent refund from the tax men, I will also request that I can get a little portable DVD player with an iPod dock and a video input so I can either watch or listen to podcasts at my bench, or play a DVD, or use it to run a miniature of the video from the main TV behind my back so I can see and hear what's streaming from Netflix. I mean, right now I could hear it, but I'd have to turn away from my work to actually see what's going on. And since right now my "Watch Now" queue is filled with "Hercules" I'm gonna want to see it. Yep, hubba hubba on Kevin Sorbo and all those Minnesotan muscles. Yum.

If we don't get a decent refund, it will just take longer. Birthday is right around the corner. :D

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Workbench Saga Pt. 4

So as promised, the rest of the workbench saga. Some in-progress photos, and the finished awesomeness...

Husband being "manly":

Mid-construction... it's looking bench-like finally.

And TADA! (It's so shiny!):

I had conveniently forgotten, however, that a half a day of tightening reluctant screws, and lifting and positioning steel-sheet pieces will make you ACHE all over... I feel like I used to post-PT in the Army. Especially in the shoulders. Which is giving me the irrational impulse to work on my abs. I may need to request an intervention...

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Workbench Saga Pt. 3

After lugging two big boxes up, I am required to tell you that my husband is "the bomb" (his choice of words, hah).

Here, we see my empty workspace after clearing out the detested folding table (note the dyestains on the carpet):

The work station before the de-boxing:

All the parts in their bubble-wrapped glory:

I must say, Kobalt pays serious attention to detail. Not only are all the parts numbered, but all the plastic wrapping is also numbered. So if you start pulling the plastic off the parts without thinking before assembling, you're not sitting there with a sinking feeling in your stomach as you've just realized you just de-numbered all the parts. The finish on this thing is a glossy, piano-black finish. You can tell it's a really layered coat too... we've already slipped with the screwdriver once or twice and it's barely phased it.

Friday, February 6, 2009

The workbench saga, part 2

Some of you may remember my post a few weeks ago *lusting* after a proper workbench. As you may have guessed, budgetary concerns made me feel guilty enough that we skipped it last payday, and I did the whole martrydom thing.

Well I may not be listing or creating anything for the shop for the next few days, because we are finally getting my new work station!!! Yeah, buddy.

Features on this bad boy I am most looking forward to include pegboard backsplash, built in lighting, and four integrated outlets so I can freaking *plug* something *in* without having to crawl under a very lethal folding table.

I'm interested to see how hubby manages to get it home in a sedan. I'm pretty sure it's one of those "assemble on site" jobs. I'm fine with that. The problem is I'm going to have to send him to the store alone, since we can't fit something like that in the car with me and mini-Tilandra along. I have this sudden terror that he's going to forget to look at the model number and screw it up. Hmmm... may have to print that out again and use a HUGE highlighter. You know. Just to make *sure*.


Thursday, February 5, 2009

Tightening the belt

Right before Hurricane Katrina happened, my husband was unemployed. Seriously unemployed... for nearly a year. This was actually fortunate for us in a way, because A) when Katrina happened he had the freedom to look for a job in our new locale, instead of wondering "Do I have a job to go back to or not?" and B) it gave me some serious skills that I am putting to good use during this recession.

Barronius and I are both veterans, and he put in fifteen years in the Navy, so he gets a modest retirement check. That covered our house payment... barely. At the time I was a stay-at-home mom, and I created digital content for hobbyists using 3D art programs (so I wasn't making that much money... if you think Etsy fees are bad, try the digital art community where it's common for the hosting sales site to take HALF of your sale price in fees). During this time I managed to feed our family of three on $20 a week. No, not a typo. Here's how it's done...

1) Give up pre-packaged, pre-processed foods. Make everything from scratch. I draw the line at making my own pasta, but it can be done, and for much cheaper than store bought. Instead of boxed mac and cheese, buy pasta and cheese and make your own. It's healthier that way too.

2) Eat more fresh veggies and produce. This kind of ties in with #1.

3) Use meat as a cameo actor, not the star of the show. Meat is expensive, and while I hate to admit it, we carniverous people probably eat too much of it anyway. Use meat to flavor foods instead of as the main dish. For example, a small amount of ham in a large pot of lentils, or my personal favorite... homemade pizza. While he was unemployed, I'd buy one package of Italian sausage for the week, and instead of using it all as one main course, I'd cook it all, chop it up, and save it for a week's worth of pizzas. You can do the same with a small package of boneless skinless chicken breasts, or a large portobello mushroom if you prefer.

4) Save a tiny bit of your budget up to buy in bulk where possible. Since I was stretching most of our meats by making pizza, I would save up when I could and buy a twenty-five pound bag of flour for about $8 (store brand). This would last me at least a month making pizza regularily and bread once a week. Stretched out over time that $8 fed us very cheaply.

5) Buy WIC approved foods. If you don't know what WIC is, it's a program that gives food vouchers to financially challenged women who are pregnant to make sure they eat well during their pregnancy. Only certain foods are approved, and there's a reason... they are usually inexpensive foods packed with nutrition. Dried beans, milk, *real* cheese (not factory processed crap), whole grain bread, etc. If you're going to spend your last dollar on foods, they should actually give you some nutrients when they get in there. If you look closely at most grocery store pricing labels, you'll occasionally see a small tag that says "WIC approved" next to the price. Especially on the items I mentioned above, like dried beans, milks, and cheeses.

6) For goodness' sake, don't eat out! This includes quick trips to McDonalds, people. For the $15 you spend at McD's, you can buy a bag of flour and a five-pound package of hamburger and eat homemade burgers for weeks. It's a luxury, not a necessity. I have a friend on the internet, a bachelor, who told me his monthly bill for eating out was over $1500. !!! That's a monthly payment on a nice house... I just about died. Fortunately his sister was a chef, so with her help he cut his food bill to about 1/8th of that.

7) My grandmother had a saying, and I think this is common to anyone who lived through the '30s depression... "Fix it, re-use it, make do, or do without". What this means is, instead of throwing away a pair of jeans with a hole in them, patch them. If you're a girl, patch it with something pretty and consider it art. Or keep them and use the fabric to patch the next pair of jeans with a hole in them. Or cut it into strips and knit a bath mat. Need something to hold old magazines? Don't buy a fancy (but cheap) plastic organizer from target... cut the side off a cereal box and put them in there. Cover it in contact paper if you have to. Need a pencil holder? Wash out that tin can your tomatoes for last night's spaghetti came in and use that. We pay manufacturers a TON of money for all this packaging, and we're throwing it away, when some of it is perfectly useful.

After Katrina, we stayed with my brother-in-law for a while. He used to buy that sandwich lunch meat that came in the Glad containers. He'd throw the containers out, even though it's the *exact* same container that Glad charges money for as kitchen storage. Why? He said because it came with food in it... even though they were BUYING the same containers without food in them, washing, and reusing those. The mind boggles.

I have lots more of these kinds of little tricks, but I think I've ranted long enough. If you have any questions, feel free to ask.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Texas by way of Bon Temps

Is it possible to be homesick for someplace that's not your home town? I may miss Minnesota most of the winter, but in February I start to miss New Orleans. I miss the food, I miss the coffee, but most of all I miss Mardi Gras... not the boob-flashing side (you people who went there, you know who you are!) but the general feeling of festivity. The excitement of yelling just loud enough to the guy on the float to get his attention so he throws you something. The costumes. The feeling of celebration that tells you everyone is happy to be alive... next morning with a hangover is a different story. :D

It might be why I latched on to the show "True Blood" so hard. Bon Temps is a fictional city (named for the New Orleans saying "Le Bon Temps Roulez" or "let the good times roll" I'm guessing) but the show has captured much of the feeling in small-town Louisiana. Their vocal coach must be amazing.

So my next two rovings are "True Blood" themed. Can you guess what they are named? (hover over the thumbnails for the answer)

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

It's just like Stephen King...

A few weeks ago, I tried dyeing while I was in a foul, angry mood. The colors that came out of the dye studio that day jarred on my nerves. I hated every single piece. I braided them up (rather sloppily) and shoved them in my personal collection, thinking I'd never want to spin them up. It was my own personal horror show.

But I pulled those out this morning, rearranging stuff in my space like I do when I'm procrastinating, and much like a writer who puts a manuscript in a drawer and takes it out again weeks later, these pieces didn't bother me so much. In fact, since they were so far outside my usual palette (I am purple, pink and red-happy all the time) I was actually really pleased with the muted yellow, gray and brown in 64ct Merino. They are currently airing out outside, and they'll be braided up and in the shop sometime today.

Meanwhile I am continuing with the red-purple (seriously thinking I'm channeling a character from a V.C. Andrews novel) in the dyepot this morning. This is in the merino/bamboo/nylon blend. I think I added a bit too much black to the pot, but we'll see what comes up after the rinse. One of the things I love about dyeing is that it continually surprises you what comes out of the pot.