Friday, September 2, 2016

Gold silk, beads, and spindles

I started knitting my silk shrug and it is progressing along well.  This is a picture from earlier in the week. It is a bit bigger now but the same shape.

I also managed to photograph the Czech beads I bought on vacation to make jewelry
 This lot is meant to be used together. I also have some gold beads and some clear beads with gold crackle that might be nice to combine. The beads on top are hand made and the rest are machine made.
This is the second set I bought to mix with some other beads that I have. I can't really tell what is going to look nice till I put them all together because the sizes and proportions and the colors all make a huge difference to how they look. The ones on the top left are tear drop shaped. I got them all at Miss Bijoux. The store is right on Wenceslas Square, which is very convenient for anyone who is going as a tourist. That is right on the tourist track so easy to get to.

I haven't been spinning at all which is strange since I love it. I have been very tired in the evenings and weekends have been jam packed with yard work, preserving CSA produce, exercise, etc. I made some herb salt using this recipe, which is for basil salt. Mine is about 90% basil but I threw in some rosemary, lavender, sage and oregano just to add some other notes. I used this recipe vs. the one I used last year because this uses more herbs. My basil is growing like Jack's beanstalk this year. I have already frozen pesto twice, and basil mixed with olive oil twice and that is about all I can use. It suddenly struck me that I could make salt now and give it as Christmas gifts later. So I did.

I also dried mint leaves for tea and will be drying sage leaves this weekend just for cooking.
Those two jars in the back are the basil/herb salt. The rest is the mint.

I got a spiralizer on Amazon Prime day and have been spiralizing everything since. Mostly zucchini. It is a great lunch alternative to soup. I make stir fries, thai curry, Mediterranean flavored, etc. veggie noodles and divide them up for lunches during the week.

And since I haven't been spinning, I decided to indulge in a little spinning retail therapy and bought these 5 gorgeous Spindolyn spindles. I like supported spindling in odd moments and am hoping that this will help me get more into it. These are all made from American woods.
They have a base so can sit beside you and the hook on top means that you can draft against it instead of a pure long draw as with other supported spindles. Now I need to get back to spindling! With my new Hansen Pro, that is two sets of tools that I need to play with.

But I've been mostly just knitting at night while listening to podcasts or reading a book.

My plan for the weekend is finish making packets out of my Finn lamb fleece so I can start to wash them as it gets colder. To preserve the lock structure, I am putting them in large mesh laundry bags with safety pins separating them from each other. It was too much work to sew them into bundles and the pins work quite well. This way I can wash 2-3 packets in a sitting and let them dry without having to handle the locks and mess them up. I'll get pictures as I make these so you can see what I'm doing.

It is a smelly fleece so I prefer to work outside to make the packets and then i only need to remove what I'm going to wash from the bag. I got half a fleece from a spinning guild member who raises them. I also have a Cormo that I bought last year at Rhinebeck to wash. But the Finn is smellier so I am doing it first.

Have a great Labor Day Weekend everyone!

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