Highland Headbands

I've been busy making tartan headbands to sell for the benefit of the highland dance workshop that we'll be going to in a couple of weeks. Thirty at $5 a piece will bring in a little cash if they all go. They are reversible and made with real tartan that I bought from the scraps of our local kilt shop. Fun stuff and my girls love them too. I've got a couple over at Etsy which I'm selling for bit more than at the Workshop ($5 is a nice round number to collect at the table). If they go I'll be making more. It would be a nice way to pay for all the competitions we'll be going to in the coming year! I basically used this tutorial, although similar ones can be found. Super easy, just looking at one should be enough to figure it out.


Kilted Bear and a' that

My husband returned from a men's conference that was held by our family of churches on Saturday. There were many interesting stories, testimonies of God's grace and meaningful conversations with other men. However, one particular story demanded a response, really. Our pastor provided the comic relief for the retreat and on one evening he donned a kilt and took issue with the small contingent of men from Wales. Lumping the Welsh in with the rest of Great Britain he apparently made fun of tea, the queen, kilts and sporrans. (Please understand that this was all for effect, he doesn't seriously have a beef with the UK or its culture.) The children and I had visited our local kilt shop (yes, we have one) that day to pick up some tartan scraps for making headbands to sell at a upcoming Scottish Dance event. Erin recalled to Ewan that there was a bookmark at the store that said the MacFarlane motto is "This I'll defend!"

We talked for awhile and came up with a plan. A kilted bear, a basket of goodies from the UK including a Wallace and Gromit CD and a book by the Scottish theologian Horatius Bonar. And finally, since I had some sheep liver in my freezer, I'd make a little pot haggis (as best I could) and Ewan would challenge him to eat it!

We presented it to him after the service, where he was shocked to learn that Ewan was married in a kilt. He was such a good sport and tried the haggis - and said it wasn't bad. We hope that rest of the goodies will be enjoyable to the whole family.

The title for this post was a riff from the Burn's song "A Man's A Man for A' That".


Quilt Show

I was a member of a great quilt guild for a number of years. The members of this guild, Loose Threads Quilt Guild were recently invited to select their best quilts to be exhibited in a brand new gallery space at a local community college. I posted some of the pictures on my homeschool blog - it was a learning experience, you know.

If you want to see more photos from the show please click on the mosaic below:

Quilt Mosaic


Add Another Animal

Add another animal to the list of animal hairs I've spun this week (sheep, alpaca, goat). There wasn't going to be enough of the alpaca to do a 2 ply yarn of the amount I wanted. I had some dark brown llama fiber that I bought in NC back in October. So, I alternated that on one of the plys and came up with this five oz. of soft loveliness:
Want to see my new custom made lazy kate?


Sea Mist

Remember the roving from Twin Ponds Fiber Farm that I bought at the Farm Show on Saturday. Well, last night I turned a good portion of it into this:

Currently spinning up the other roving from Saturday, the suri alpaca. Hope to post pictures of that soon!


Alpaca, mohair, and wool oh my!

I love the PA Farm Show and I love the opportunity to buy fiber for spinning directly from the farmer (especially when I have a little Christmas money just for that purpose given to me by my husband!) Yesterday we visited the alpacas of A Suri Farm. They had a bit of roving and some hand-spun yarn to sell right there alongside the animals. Since they are not far from my dad, I hope we can visit the farm when I have this all spun up. The roving I bought comes from a suri alpaca named Alice and it a very beautiful natural shade of "dark fawn". It is unbelievably soft.

Later on in the day I stopped by Terry Kunst's stand. My Kiri shawl came from her fiber that I bought last January. This time I chose a wool/mohair blend called Sea Mist. I just love the blues that she got in this one. She had some raw fleece as well and, at only $5 per pound, I was tempted, but resisted. Three years ago that was how I got started in this whole thing. I went to her booth and bought raw wool. She told me how to wash it and a little bit of the idea of spinning. I know she exhibits at other fairs and fiber festivals. If you get a chance do try to catch her.


She's got spin!

So how a fellow knitter could come to my house for a 2 night visit and not bring her yarn and needles, I have no idea! You come with no yarn? You learn to spin! I'll let her show you the pictures. Click on over to Potpourri.

I'm enjoying some of her zinfandel jelly right now. Mmm, thanks Jen!


Etsy Shop

Well, I'm starting the new year with a new venture. The Etsy shop is up!

Jennie came up for a visit this week and helped me get started. I've since added more pictures and a bio. I've got lots of ideas of things to make, just gotta get busy. I have ideas for the kids too. Well, mainly the oldest, but my nine year old son got a whittling book for Christmas and if he practices we might have some twig roosters and hens to offer. I think Erin could come up with some creative kid kits for Valentine's Day. Fun little things to do with wee ones and all the paper already cut out for you!

All that is in the shop so far is hand-dyed roving. I love playing with color. I think I'll be working on some this week - getting some of the stash dyed so that I can purchase more wool at the PA Farm Show on Saturday! In the meantime, I expect to put some bath salts and lip butters that we made in December into the shop!