Friday, October 18, 2013

Am I Ready for Ravelry?

Ravelry is a free website for fiber folks, mostly knitters and crocheters. It’s been around for awhile. I signed up years ago, but was never active…..until now.

With the invaluable help of my friend, Elizabeth K, my knitting patterns are now available for purchase on Ravelry. I’m “atyler”, and my designs are under Amy Tyler, Stone Sock Fiber Designs.

My most recent pattern is for an afghan that I designed earlier this year. It incorporates stitch patterns that are combinations of ribs and welts. The pattern name is direct: Rib Welt Sampler Afghan. Here’s a picture (courtesy of Briar Rose Fibers):

The patterns have been up for just a couple days and I’m already making sales. I think that’s good. Am I ready for this?

I’m curious to see what happens while I’m away next week at SOAR

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Hankie Heaven

It’s been a busy couple of weeks. Busy, and productive. Since I blogged last, I’ve finished and submitted two articles that are scheduled to be published in the Spring 2014 issue of Ply Magazine. I taught workshops at Yarn in the Barn. I’ve submitted proposals for workshops for Michigan Fiber Festival 2014. And I’m putting the finishing touches on preparations for teaching at Spin-Off Autumn Retreat.

My recent blog silence is not due to a lack of stuff to share. Just a lack of time!

For the past month or so, I have spent most of my creative time with silk hankies. That’s the topic of my two articles for Ply: one article on technical issues of spinning silk hankies, the other article presenting a design and knitting pattern for fingerless mitts.

I spent nearly three weeks spinning silk hankies every day. Now, hankies can be a physical challenge, so I had to be very conscientious about not overdoing it. I limited myself to no more than three hours per day. I made several yarn samples, mostly experimenting with the amount of twist I was using. I find this type of systematic activity to be very informative. And, reiteration also sparks my creative thoughts.

Here are some pictures of samples:

And here’s a picture of the mitts I designed. (I’m very pleased with them.)

These articles coincide nicely with one of my SOAR workshops, “Spinning With Silk Hankies”. So, I’ll have several new samples to show workshop participants.

And, at Yarn in the Barn, I discovered that Chris Roosien (Briar Rose Fibers) has started dyeing silk hankies. Of course I got a bundle. Her colors are dreamy.

I recall a line from the old TV show, Designing Women. One character said, “A lady should never be without a linen hankie.”

Here’s my take: A spinner should never be without a silk hankie.