It’s been so hot these past few days hasn’t it? Outside it has been so hot you can hardly breathe, but so warm inside it’s not much better. We had a thunderstorm yesterday, or was it the day before? I can’t remember. It was nice and still in the morning, bit cloudy but still quite warm, enough to not have a jumper (and shoes!) on really.

What I have been doing each morning is coming down at about 9am and letting the chickens straight out in the yard – they love it. The thunder morning was no different. I sat outside with a cup of tea and my pyjamas and let them out. We had about five minutes before the thunder and lightning started. It was wonderful to listen to and watch. Freddy nor the chickens seemed the slightest bit bothered. Then all of a sudden the Heavens opened! The rain poured down instantly! I had to race round gathering up the chickens as they still didn’t seem to want to go in! It took me another couple of minutes to get the coop doors both locked and closed. I was drenched by the time I got in, and the back door is about two metres from the coop!

I thought I would make todays blog a bit of everything today.

I have sadly neglected my lovely CAL blanket for almost a week! I felt so ashamed, so last night I sat down with Mum to watch ‘The Haunting’ (amazing film, one of my favourites!) and I got a few rows done. I have now completed last weeks rows, and need to concentrate on this weeks. I have only tomorrow to finish them before the next ones come along! I know there is no rush, but I do so hate lagging behind.

What do you think? Do you like the colours? It is all acrylic and some of the colours are stunning. (In my humble opinion…)

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It’s going to be lovely and warm when I am finished. I plan on putting a border round it when the CAL has finished. I assume I will have to buy some new 100g balls of yarn as a half ball will not go round the whole thing! Can’t wait, haha!

I finally decided last night that I was going to use some of my hand spun yarn to knit with. I wanted something small, but something I could wear. I thought about a hat but thought I would have no-where near enough, so I decided on a small pair of fingerless mittens. I found a rough pattern on Ravelry and adapted it to how I envisioned my mitts to look like. Unfortunately, they are too big! So, I will finish the other one and give it to my Dad. It gets very cold in his shop in Winter, so I think he will appreciate them.

I have made them using hand spun DK weight Massam. So soft and a pleasure to use. The brown is Shetland Moorit. It is a bit rougher, but still lovely. What do you think so far?

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I would have liked to have done a small fair-isle pattern in the back of the mitten, but decided against it in the end. I only wanted a super quick knit and I think this was it. If I wanted to put some patterns on it, I thought I could Swiss darn it. Besides, if I make it too patterned my Dad won’t wear it. He likes simple designs, not like my Mum who does like a bit of a pattern and colour to things! Me and Mum are exactly the same in our likes and dislikes 😀 Love you Mum and Dad!

I did some dyeing on Sunday with A. He chose to do yellow and red (Ironman colours… wouldn’t think he was nearly 25 would you? haha) and I chose green and another go of the ‘old gold’ colour. The dye was left over from last time I used it. I used hot/warm water with each dye (three were Dr Oetker food dyes) and a good half cup of vinegar. Couldn’t believe what a difference vinegar makes! All dyed extremely well. Oops, forgot to say, it’s my Scottish Blackface fleece. Gorgeous stuff and dyes amazingly. Want to see?

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I’m pretty pleased with them. I thought I had some photos of the other dyeing I had done, but it doesn’t seem to be on my SD card. 😦 Ah well. The other colours I did were blue with food colouring, yellow with tumeric (I HATE the smell!!!) and orangey gold with ‘old gold’ dylon.

Here is some others things I have been doing. I want to make up my own Etsy shop, but I am unable to do it at the moment due to current circumstances. I may start this up when I am earning money from supply work. I cannot do this when I am on jobseekers as they will take money off me that I do not have. I don’t expect to make much money from this – just enough to let me have fun and buy some more supplies. But anyway, it makes me sad thinking about it, but I shall have my shop one day. Here I have made some gorgeous new drop spindles which I plan to sell one day. Some are glittery, but all have one single, bright, bold colour. I just love the look and feel of them, so smooth and shiny. They work excellently too, and the ones I have sold to a few people adore them! What do you think? These are the glitter ones.

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Unfortunately again, some of my photos have gone and I can’t find the single coloured, bold ones, argh! Never mind. I was going to sell some in a kit for £4/£5 a pack, or the spindles for £2.50 on their own. I will get there one day.

I dream of having a shop – online is fine, where i sell all my own designs, and my spindles and lots and lots of fleece batts! Ooh, talking of fleece batts, I’m going to buy a drum carder -tonight!

It’s this one –

http://www.classiccarder.co.uk/opencart/index.php?route=product/product&path=59&product_id=72

It’s gorgeous and I can’t wait to click on ‘buy it now.’ I was planning on getting a HERO by Woolmakers, but they are away for a month! So, I can’t. But looking around, this one isn’t too much dearer and it’s much bigger. I look forward very much to having it in my hands to use. Does anyone else use a drum carder? Any tips? I’ve been reading about them constantly, and watching YouTube videos. I want to go on one!!

Well, today has been super busy. I thought today I would get some more of my fleece done. I pulled out a wonderful Jacobs fleece and it was just so soft. It looked very, very good and I think it will one day be a very fine yarn.

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I washed it in sections and put in a sink full of hot water and some cheap conditioner. I did two rinses per section. The water didn’t run clear as such, but I wasn’t going to keep using so much hot water. I then spun it in two parts and put it outside to dry. It was on the clothes horse, but since it started to shower, I had to race outside, dump it in a bag and wait for the rain to subside. It has now, so I’ve got it sitting outside again.

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Theres an awful lot there! I also washed a Ryedale, or Ryland fleece. I can’t remember what it is called 😦 I did this in a large tub outside rather than in the kitchen and it cleaned just as well, nice and shiny white. It is drying on this very table as we speak.

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I have also put into soak my mohair fleece. I got so fed up with it last time because the grease just would. not. come. out. I have asked a few people on Ravelry what they thought and they think the water was not hot enough, or there was no enough cleaner in it. So, today I put very hot tap water in the tub, and then a whole kettle full of boiling water. I put in some vinegar and some washing up liquid/conditioner and left it to soak for an hour. I changed the water again, and will leave this overnight. Already the mohair seems that little bit easier to use but still got lots of grease in there, which is understandably very disappointing. I will keep you updated how that will go.

Here are some quick pics of the chickens – they are getting on SOOO well. Freddy wanders in and out of them and the hens walk under him! It gives him a bit of a start but he has been such a good boy. I’m so proud of him. These hens have no fear though. The amount of times they go up to Freddy and peck his paws (or attempt to!) or come and peck at our feet. And trying to get in the house! I was painting the spindles outside with Mum a few days ago when suddenly Donna just jumped on the table. We just stared at her for a minute and she just looked back. I swear, if she could have, she would have shrugged her shoulders and said, ‘what you looking at?’ Cheeky birds, but I ADORE them! Love them to bits.

Anyway, I must go now, I’ve written quite enough. I’ll leave you my favourite photo of the week.

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My gorgeous Freddy, me and my beautiful Rose.

Nighty night all, have a great evening.

xXx Love Kais xXx

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2 thoughts on “

  1. Hi, just remember that if the water cools down then the lanolin will redeposit itself on the fleece. I tend to use hotest water from the tank plus kettle so its just too hot for my hands and fairy wah liquid, leave 20 mins then wash again if its a greasy fleece. if not I rinse using hot water about 3 times or untill water is clear. Include vinegar in the rinse to counteract the ph of the soap.

    • I did not know that the grease comes back onto the fleece if the water cools down. That may be exactly where I am going wrong as I leave it to soak for a good few hours so the water is cold when I return. With this mohair though, even in the cold water it seems to have helped a little. I will give it a super hot wash tomorrow because I do so hope that this works as it’s a beautiful fleece. (I have bought so much vinegar so I will have plenty) Thanks for your help, I’ll show you how I get on in the future. 🙂

xXx Do leave a comment, I'd love to hear from you! xXx

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