Tweedy Mendocino Vest

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Mendocino Vest by Old Mill Farm

I chose the Cottontail City Tweed Heavy Worsted yarn from Knit Picks to make the Mendocino Vest as seen in Shear Spirit.  It was a rough start, but as I struggled threw, I’ve now got the pattern in my head.  I’d really like to try and rework this pattern with a cable.

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Fabulous Friday

Opps. I sat down to write this….oh about 8 hrs ago. Talk about memory leakage!

I’ve been busy with the animals, cleaning house and baking more cherry cobbler since my neighbor picked me another gallon of sour cherries. Don’t you wish you had a neighbor like that! He really is super and since his wife died of cancer several years ago, I like to treat him to tasty treats every now and then.

Image from Three Irish Girls

Image from Three Irish Girls

I found this really fabulous site if you are in love with color and yarn. I am having so much fun just looking. It makes me want to break out my dye and my roving and start dyeing….but that’s for another day.

Image from Three Irish Girls

Image from Three Irish Girls

I hope you’ll stop over to visit my shop today. All your clicks help move me up in the search engines.

I hope you have a wonderful joy filled weekend.

Mendocino Vest

I just love this picture of tweedy yarn from Knit Picks.  If I could, and maybe I might….make a Mendocino Vest in each colorway.  But at the rate of $24.00 for each vest….well, maybe I’ll do one and see how much I love it.  For now, I think I’m going to go with the Cajun or Cottonball tweedy color…or maybe the Tabby.  I think I’ll order one of each and knit up some swatches to see which will work the best for the pattern and for me.

I also love the pattern Sheepwalk & Fences at Autumn House Farm.  I almost bought it at the Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival, but I think something that buttons up is better for me in case the internal fire begins to burn again!

I’ve finished my Cable & Ladders Sweater (I’ll show you after I get it blocked) from Shear Spirit and since I love knitting cables, my next project will probably be the Mendocino Vest on page 151 from Old Mill Farm also published in Shear Spirit.

I’m a Rambouillet

I took a cute quiz here from the book, The Knitter’s Book of Wool.

And I’m a Rambouillet!  I’ve never knitted with Rambouillet wool, so I guess I’ll have to give it a try!  I’m a soft and cozy kinda girl.

Cables & Ladders

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I’m almost finished with my Cassandra Cardigan from Shear Spirit. One more sleeve to go and I’m done. Then I have to block it and hope it fits!

I really love the way the yarn took the dye. As I’m knitting, I admire all the hues that pop out at me; pinks, yellow, orange and of course red. I’m far from knowledgeable in color theory. Sweet Girl is the pro in that area. We often have debates about whether something is red or pink! She always wins!!! (I know you don’t see red…me either 😉 but if I think like Sweet Girl, then red has to exist….because red and yellow make orange!)

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Here is a link to Two Shear Spirits.

Friday’s Fling

It’s Friday AGAIN!!! How does this happen so fast? I was always told it was age. I’m not so sure anymore. Yes, I am a lot older, but I think it’s a sign of our times. Too much to do. Not enough time. A rushed lifestyle that consumes our time with gadgets and freeways and stuff.

I guess that’s why I enjoy the art of creating. It tends to slow me down. It tends to reconnect me to the earth and all the beauty that God created for me to enjoy. The slow arts are my love; dyeing, spinning, knitting, gardening and even farming. My newest book is, “The Mother of All Arts: Agrarianism and the Creative Impulse” by Gene Logsdon. Something about that title grabbed at who I am at the chore. I can’t wait to dive into it!

Today’s featured item from my shop Butterflies & Bumble Bees is called Shibori.

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Shibori is a Japanese term for the method of dyeing cloth. I use a needle and thread to gather up the silk scarf into a tiny piece of folds and then I carefully pour or paint it with prepared dyes after the silk itself has been soaked in soda ash. I then wrap it in a plastic bag for 24 hrs. The next step of rinsing is always my favorite. I never really know how the silk will take the dye. I carefully cut the thread and unfold to find a visual surprise!

Counting Sheep

I went to my Basic Shepherding class this AM at the MD Sheep & Wool Festival. It was taught by Dr Richard Barczewski who is a professor at Delaware State University. He was born and raise around sheep and his wife is a livestock veterinarian. Rich’s (that’s easier than his last name) assistant was Peter Austin from Quailhill which is just down the road a spell from me.

All and all I learned the basics of shepherding sheep. Funny, that’s just what the class description was called. I probably could have learned all of this from a book, but there was a lot of interaction and time for questions. And then of course I was able to browse around and look at the lambies.

I’ll have to let Honey know that I was at a Basic Shepherding class this morning, because it just makes sense to use at least one more type of animal on a farm. Cows like grass about 6 inches high and rip it off, but sheep are grazers. So they will mow the grass short.

See. No top teeth. So they just rip it. They rap that long tongue around it and yank.

Plus the cows will clean up any parasites that sit on the grass blades waiting to infect the sheep. Then I will follow with chickens to spread the manure and eat the fly larvae.

I’ve thought about it. But putting it all into practice will take time. I may not get sheep right now…..at least not this weekend….but there is always the county fair in August.

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I can’t remember what Peter called this, but basically he got this lamb in headlock and threw her. Then propped her up on her rear. Then he showed us how to trim her hoofs.

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The other sheep in the pen that we were all standing in went bonkers. When one decided that he wanted on the other side then all of them ran to the other side. That would have been ok if about 20 humans hadn’t been standing in the pen also.

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There were some early arrivals who were getting their sheep shorn an looking beautiful, ready for competition.

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This ram was huge! And so beautiful.

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Cute little sheepie, almost looks like a puppy.

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These guys were pretty friendly and liked having their heads rubbed. Their coats were so pretty.

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BaBa Blacksheep, have you any wool?

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Jacob Sheep

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Lookin pretty.

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This is a Jamaican Sheep…just kidding…he says “hey maaan”.

This guy had a really deeeeep voice.

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This was my favorite sheepie. This is a Leicester and she loved for me to rub her face….she just didn’t want me to stop. I wanted to stick her in my back pocket and walk out with her….but, well, I’m not sure, but I think someone would have notice that she was missing.

I can’t wait to go back tomorrow and browse around the merchants and visit my favorite local shop….Dancing Leaf Farm and get some of her Blue Faced Leicester fleece to finish spinning enough for a sweater for Honey. And heaven only knows what else I might find. If it doesn’t pour rain I’d like to watch the sheepdog demonstrations and see some exhibitions. And of course get a yummy lamb sandwich of some sort. Or a kabob…and I just might have to stay the whole day, just so I can eat lunch and dinner.

I plan to have a lovely weekend, rain or shine, enjoying life to the fullest.