Sunday, October 21, 2012

Spinning on Saltspring

Ohhhh my GOSH!
This past September, I had the most wonderful experience taking a spinning course on Saltspring Island, just a ferry ride from my home town of Vancouver BC.  The course was called "Colour Control in Spinning", and took place at the Jane Stafford Textile Studios under the instruction of the fabulous Cheryl Wiebe.

I travelled there with Jo Anne and Linella, and we were lucky enough to have gotten to stay at Jane Stafford's farm stay house.  Before we arrived at the studio, we took a small detour for some DELICIOUS Saltspring coffee, a peek at the local yarn store Stitches, and had a tour of the Gulf Island Spinning Mill Cooperative. We got to see where many of the local sheep and alpaca farmers send their fleece to be cleaned and/or spun.  Although we were hoping there would be more fleece for us to purchase on hand, it was still really neat getting a chance to see the process in action!

We had a wonderful evening in Jane's company before our course started on Thursday morning.  There were 7 people participating in the course, and I was glad to meet every one!  Ros and Sara were travelling from England, Charlotte works at the studio, and Linda lives off-island as well, like our trio from Vancouver.

I learned SOOO much over the next two days - about colour of course, but also new things about my wheel, how to Andean ply, and other tips and tricks that you ONLY learn by being snug in a room with so many spinners for HOURS.  We tacked on a few extra hours to our workshop at the end of Day 1 so us Vancouverites who had to leave early to catch a ferry wouldn't miss out on anything from the workshop.  We were all pretty tuckered out, but really, in the best way possible. ;)  Jane kept up a steady supply of coffee and treats, and tons of fibre samples kept flowing our way.

I can't say enough how much I enjoyed this course.  I would HIGHLY recommend a spinning course by Cheryl, in fact, I have already signed up for her next course in January this year, "Know Your Fibre, Know Your Wheel."  And really, any excuse to have a vacation on Saltspring is worth it - what an AMAZING place.

If you would like to check out any other photos from your trip, I have put together an album from our trip!

Happy Spinning! I know I'm inspired to jump back behind my wheel right now in fact... Cheers!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Penticton Penny Hat

Today I have published my Penticton Penny Hat! I designed this hat for my friend Tyler when he got married this summer - I wanted to make him something fun and original, and I thought putting a good luck charm in the brim would be a neat idea.

You can download the pattern here, or check it out in my Ravelry store!

It's a beanie-style toque requiring just under one skein of worsted weight yarn.  There is a little hole in the brim designed to accommodate a penny (or any other special coin or charm) for a personalized touch.

As always, let me know how your projects work out - I appreciate all your feedback!
And I would like to give a big shout-out to my buddy Kris for modeling it for these photos!