Sunday, 15 May 2011

A Knitterly Update

Quite a while ago I posted about my wish to make a jumper for one of my girls inspired by this wee fellow:

About this time last year I had purchased a glorious shetland fleece. It was silver grey, with darker grey patches. I washed it ready to spin, once I had decided what I wanted to create with it:

I went backwards & forwards between a jumper & a tank top & in the end, decided to go with a tank top.
I wanted the fair isle design to be isnspired by the colours of the two wee robins that we see on our nature walks (& that try as I might, I can never get a photo of them both together!)
Soft greys, deeper grey, brown, off white & that glorious deep red - orange.

The fleece has patches of charcoal grey - I combed all the fibre & then drum carded to blend the different colours within the one fleece. Some of the fibre was set aside to dye in the browns & reddish orange.

The colours I got from the natural fleece where as follows:

Off-white - from combing the lightest parts of the fleece - the combing removed the grey hairs leaving me with off white.

Silver - Blending the off white with the charcoal

Charcoal - from the darkest parts of the fleece

Brown - I hand dyed some of the off - white

Robin Redbreast Orange - again hand dyed off - white.

I was so nervous about dyeing this! I wanted it to be just right & did not have enough fleece to try over if I made a mistake! I mixed Orange Scarlet & Bright Turquoise Procion Dyes
I was delighted with the results - a perfect Robin - Red! I then drum carded the dyed fleece with some sparkly angelina fibre in 'rusty nail' to give the sweater a very subtle sparkle.

So, onto the yarn! I spun this up on my spinning wheel into a 2 ply yarn. Just a little heavier than a fingering weight. I spun in a 'woolen' method, which produces a lovely, lofty, cuddly yarn, perfect for Fair Isle designs.

I charted out a few fair isle patterns, decided on a winner & cast on a swatch. Essential! This gave me the info I needed for sizing, needle size, the look of the design knit up etc etc.

Once I cast on 'for real' I knit & knit, round & round using steeks for the neck & arm holes. Truthfully though, I am lazy & I do not sew up the areas to be steeked first, I just have at it with the scissors, assuming the fuzziness of the yarn will do its job & hold everything together : )

And here it is! Rosie's Robin Redbreast Tank Top

These photos are not the greatest - it hasnt been blocked here& I really need to get a photo of Rosie wearing said jumper.
I enjoyed creating this so much. I has brought me a lot of joy!


Lisa said...

Hi Lynn! I can't begin to say how impressive your project came out! What a labor of love, from start to finish! Great job!

Lynn said...

Oh, thank you Lisa! I really enjoyed creating this.


Helen Jacobs-Grant said...

Hi Lynn

this is one of THE best fibre to finished object posts I have ever seen in over two years. Such an inspiration, when I saw this one late last night it made me want to get up and try a bit of spinning again even though I had seriously overdone it yesterday with not resting I still enjoyed doing a little bit of my own and adding more to my bobbin. Thank you so much for sharing this project, I just love it :)

Helen x

Lynn said...

thank you Helen!
that is so kind of you.
I *loved* creating this!
what are you working on?

Lynn said...

What a real labour of love Lynn! Your girls are so fortunate to have such a 'knitterly' mum!

Lynn said...

thank you Lynn!

Anonymous said...

Lynn, I am SUPER impressed!!! Where do you find the time? You have realy inspired me.

Lynn said...

thank you Shirley Ann!
Well, it was an easy knit - so i could tote it around. Plus everyone is in bed here by 8pm ; )


Unknown said...

That is so gorgeous!