Knitting, Yarn, Wool, Socks

Campfire S’mores

Hey Everyone!

I finished up the campfire s’mores socks i have been working on lately.

The yarn base this colorway is on is the Coquette base from bumblebee acres fiber farm. The coquette yarn base is the thickest fingering weight base I have used.

This pair was the first pair i have made with this particular yarn base, so i made them a bit shorter than most of my other pairs, as I didn’t want to run out mid way through the second sock. Turns out i had more that enough, so i am going to make the rest of the pairs i am making out of this base, in other colorways I have, the normal lengths.

Autumn, Fall, Inspiration, Knitter's Talk, Knitting, Socks, Winter, Wool, Work, Yarn, Yarn Store

Racing against Time and the arrival of Warm Weather

Hey Everyone!

I finally finished up the “make it pink, make it blue” socks on Sunday. At this point I am still leaning towards selling this pair eventually, but I want to wait a bit, and see if there are any more pairs I knit up that I decide to sell as well.

I am still have the second “let it snow” sock on the needles, but I went ahead and cast one one of the Bumble Bee Acres Farm yarns I had ordered last autumn. I chose the campfire s’mores colorway to cast on. I had gotten this colorway on the Coquette yarn base. As this is an autumn colorway, it is no longer available in their shop.

This is just the progress I had made by about 4:30 this afternoon. As of writing this post (at 11:00 at night), I have made a bit more progress on the leg.

Last week, I want to say it was on Thursday, that I was surprised that the latest Bumblebee Bee Acres Farm order “shipped”, and actually shipped on Friday. I could be wrong, but I get the feeling that they process and get orders ready throughout the week, but actually ship and take to the post office on Friday’s, or at least that has been the case with my last two orders (I honestly don’t remember the first). Now that I feel like I understand their system a little better, my opinion of them isn’t quite as low, and has gotten a bit better. That being said, I am still trying to buy from people / small businesses that have a bit better turn around and align with my values a bit more, or are at least able to stay neutral as far as their business is concerned when it comes to polarizing issues.

This last order from bumblebee acres arrived yesterday, and here are the three Hanks that I ordered:

The colorways are from the Outlander Collection. From left to right they are: Safe Harbor, The MacKenzie, and Murtagh. All three of these colorways are on the coquette yarn base. As of writing this post (February 4th, 2020), they are still likely in the shop should you choose to order them.

One of the things I have learned about indie dyers is that some of them only do a limited run of certain colors, and when it’s gone, it’s gone while others keep particular colors in stock on certain bases, and when their stock on hand is low, they dye up more while others keep particular colors in their shop and dye to order (and are up front about that and about turnaround time). So, if I am shopping a new shop that I haven’t dealt with before, I know that I need to snap it up if I really want it, just in case it sells out. There are others, that I know keep an inventory of certain colors, or if it in in the shop, it is dye to order, so if I like it, it can wait until payday to order.

Now that work has slowed down, and I have a lot of sock yarn that I have ordered the past few months, I am trying to get as many pairs of socks knit up as I can, while it is still too cold and wet to hang them outside to dry. I love line drying / blocking socks. Since all of my socks are at least part wool, the idea of putting them in the tumble dryer is definitely a no-no. I would just as soon wait several months for warm weather to dry them outside then tumble dry them. This is for my newly knitted socks, I have other hand knit socks, that if I wear them, I will wash them, and hang them out (even if it is cold and wet) to air out the smell of the wool wash, then bring them in to finish drying. I would eventually love to live in a house with a wood burning stove (among other things) and be able to set up a collapsible clothes dryer at a safe distance away, and put my socks over that to dry near the fire. By the time I have worn my socks, and they have already been blocked and shaped so I wouldn’t need to really block them in the way I need to block the new ones, to get the feet shaped right. I would and will likely set the new ones aside for warm weather to allow them to hang up on the blockers on the clothes line once I wash them for the first time.

I also use a different wool wash for the first time I wash my socks, than I do for subsequent washes. I prefer using the laundress wool and cashmere shampoo for the first wash, I feel like it helps get all the excess dyes, waxed, and anything still there from the processing and anything left behind. Once I have done that and I am washing them after having been worn, I use either Kookaburra Brand or Outback Gold wool wash. Both have tea tree oil which not only is a deodorizer, but also has anti microbial properties. Both claim to be biodegradable, which is nice. Though I am leaning a bit more toward the Australian Gold, as it is made in the USA and the smell isn’t as strong, but we will see in the long run which one I stick with.

KnitPicks, Knitter's Talk, Knitting, Socks, Winter, Wool, Work, Yarn

Continuing to work on Cold Weather Necessities

Hey Everyone!

Since I updated on finishing up the silent night socks, I have finished up the first socks of the two pairs I am working on.

I finished up the first “make it pink, make it blue” sock first.

Then I busted out the first “let it snow” sock not long after.

I had started this sock a couple weeks ago, when we fittingly had snow in the forecast. I thought it might be a “good luck charm” to not get snow. It worked on that Thursday, but not so much that Friday morning. It was snowing pretty good as I drove to work between 4:30 and 5:00 that morning. We don’t get enough snow on a regular basis to warrant having chains or snow / studded tires on my little front wheel car. I just had to take it slow and easy while sticking (pun intended) to main roads. By the time I got off work the snow was pretty much gone.

Last week, I had ordered a bit more sock yarn. I had ordered a couple of Hanks from Forbidden Fiber Company’s Roaring 20’s Collection. I had ordered the colors “The Jazz Age” and “Tommy Gun”. The Jazz Age is a pretty variegated Purple that reminds me of one of my grandmothers, and Tommy Gun is a really pretty Grey variegated.

I had put in my forbidden fiber co order on the evening of Friday the 17th. It shipped Tuesday the 21st (as Monday was a federal holiday, so the post office was closed), and arrived on Saturday the 25th. I have always had a positive experience when ordering from Forbidden Fiber Company, including a quick turnaround on shipping, and good communication.

A week ago, I put in an order with bumblebee acres fiber farm, knowing that I won’t see that yarn for another two to three weeks at the earliest. Considering I have had to wait a month or more for my last two orders from this company, I knew I wouldn’t see the yarn I was ordering until at least mid February, if not closer to March. I am sure I will get the two second socks I have on the needles done as well as another pair or two before I see the last of the yarn I ordered.

I definitely won’t be ordering anymore yarn for a while. I have plenty to work with. When I am ready to order more, I doubt that I will order from any shop other than Forbidden Fiber Company or KnitPicks, they always have a good selection that they keep stocked consistently, and you rarely have to wait for restocks. I have learned my lesson about ordering from shops that don’t have good customer service, and don’t keep enough in stock for those who want to order. I am going to stick with my reliable yarn sources.

The past few days, since work has slowed down, I have had more time to knit, and watch shows. I have been watching The Deadliest Catch on Hulu. I am sad that Alaska: the last frontier is no longer on Hulu. I know that these shows are heavily edited, and to some extent scripted, but it’s Alaska.

Knitter's Talk, Knitting, Socks, Winter, Wool, Yarn

The Silent Night Socks

Hey Everyone!

I had started these socks almost a month ago! Between Work, the holidays and being busy with all of that and then some, it took a bit to get these socks done.

The Colorway is called Silent Night. The yarn base I had ordered this colorway on was the Pride yarn base from Forbidden Fiber Company. The fiber content on this yarn is: 70% superwash merino, 20% Nylon and 10% Stellina.

Now that the holidays are over, and work has slowed down, I am definitely able to get more knitting done.

One of the crazy things I have noticed across the yarn bases, is that you can’t really rely on yardages to make sure you get a pair of socks out of a hank. The Fortitude and Babel Bases are dead on (I usually have a little ball with somewhere around 10 to 20 yards left) while With Gluttony Sock I ran out and had to order more (it’s within 10 yards of the same amount as the Fortitude and Babel bases) and the Pride base has about 60 yards more in the hank than Fortitude and Babel do, and I came out with a smaller ball on this pair of socks than I do with the fortitude yarn. Everything else was kept the same, the number of stitches cast on, the lengths of the cuffs, legs, heels, feet, toes, the size of needles used, so it baffles me a bit that the different bases use such different yardages to knit up a pair of socks.

I did start on another pair of Christmas Collection colored socks. I started on the hank of “Let it Snow”, especially since they are forecasting snow to fall on the valley floor this week. I have my doubts that it will really happen though. It’s always the times that they underestimate the storm when it dumps tons, and when they overhype it, nothing really happens. I just thought it was fitting for this week to start on the “let it snow” colorway.

Knitter's Talk, Knitting, Personal Project Tuesday, Personal Projects, Socks, Winter, Wool, Yarn

The thing about Variegated Yarn

Hey Everyone!

I hope you are all having a wonderful Christmas season!

The other day, I had cast on the “make it pink, make it blue” yarn, aka the “Princess Aurora” yarn, aka the “All about that Bass” yarn to make the first sock. Once I started getting into the leg of the sock, I was looking at the colors, next to each other. It was at that point where I went from excited to work with it, as it had been so pretty in the hank and the cake, to feeling unimpressed by how the socks themselves were turning out.

It reminded me, how some Variegated Yarns I am less than impressed with in the hank and cake, but turn out to be one of my favorite pairs of socks, while I am super excited about other yarn, and it falls short of my expectations in sock form.

It is also quite interesting to see how the Variegated Yarns work up, especially the hand dyed / hand painted Yarns. Each sock of the hand painted Yarns I have knit up has been different from its mate, and the pair I knit up is different from the pair someone else knits up.

This is definitely one of the things I love about knitting, is seeing how my projects turn out.

goals, Knitter's Talk, Knitting, Socks, Wool, Work, Yarn

The Campfire Socks!

Hey Everyone!

I finally was able get my Campfire socks done today!

The Christmas yarn and the Gluttony Mini Skein of the Campfire yarn I had ordered showed up this past Friday, and I got it wound that evening. The two colors of Christmas yarn I had ordered from this year’s collection are: “o, little town of Bethlehem” (the darker one) and “Let it snow” (the lighter one).

I have been working on getting the Campfire socks done since the mini skein arrived, and I finally got the second sock finished today.

Working in any sort of knitting has been slow going since September, when work started getting busy. Work is finally starting to slow down, and we are finally starting to get caught up on freight. We had gotten behind when the truck that was supposed to come the day before Thanksgiving (November 28th) didn’t come until the following Monday (December 2nd) and we still got our normal Thursday truck on the 5th. We finally turned the corner on getting the large truck loads. Over the next three to four months we only have two “big sets”, one is coming up really soon, which is our post Christmas set, and then our outdoor (summer) set which we will set sometime in March or April, neither of which compare to our holiday freight loads.

That being said, I will be able to be spending way more time knitting in the near future, which I am super excited about. I have plenty of sock yarn to be knitting up, and I am so ready to get back to a normal sleep schedule so I have more energy, so I will want to spend my free time knitting!

Autumn, Fall, Knitter's Talk, Knitting, Socks, Winter, Wool, Work, Yarn

The First Campfire Sock

Hey Everyone!

Last night, I finally finished up the first Campfire sock of the pair I am working on!

The yarn I am using is from Forbidden Fiber Company’s autumn Collection, in the colorway Campfire, on the Gluttony Sock Yarn base.

I wasn’t sure / as excited about the yarn, while looking at it on the website, or even in the hank once I got it. It took winding it, and seeing it in the wound cake to get excited about this colorway.

I was definitely more excited about some of the other colors I had ordered, until I saw the yarn like this. I fell in love with it, when I saw it like this. I couldn’t wait to cast it on and knit it up.

Once I get this pair of socks done (I am working on the cuff of the second sock as of writing this post), I am going to start on Christmas socks, and then come back to the autumn yarn after I get Christmas socks done.

Work, is going to continue to be busy until mid January, so I will knit when I can, and get as much done as I can, on my days off. Come mid January, I will have more time to spend knitting. I want to try to get the yarn I have sitting on my computer table, as well as in my seasonal themed back knit up before spring officially arrives. I will still have a plastic grocery bag of the expensive yarn I ordered back in September / Early October to knit up, but my goal for that is to get it knit up by mid summer. Since the weather won’t be conducive to washing and line drying socks until at least mid to late June. once work slows down in January, I want to get as many pairs of socks knit up as possible in the months between then and when summer arrives.

I have also been looking at moving, and leaving the west coast behind. A lot of it has to do with the cost of living, cost of land / house prices, no real job prospects for someone like myself, more of a knitting community that is made up of more like minded individuals, living among more like minded individuals, Homesteading communities, and fiber festivals that my favorite indie dyers and small yarn shop owners attend.