Category Archives: Road Trip

Road Trip: Lost Sock & Found

Update: Happily Ever After (everything was found, safe & sound)

I’m heartbroken. 

I was on time with all my knitting plans. No urgent life crisis deadlines. Road trips are great for keeping on pace and a little ahead. 

Lost Sock: 

Road trips are disasters if you loss a finished sock. I have no clue where it could be. The last hotel we stayed at said they didn’t find it.  By the way, magical thinking doesn’t work.  I keep looking in the project bag it was in. 

Time to improvise. 

Can I squeeze a third sock out of the rest of the yarn? Maybe, if I use a different yarn for the heel and toe. Fortunately this is Susan B.Anderson’s SOS afterthought heel pattern. Half way through the second sock. Before finishing the heel and toe, I’ll weigh it. Fingers cross. 

Scratch all that. Found the lost sock in the car. Phew!

And finished the second sock on the drive home. 

Finished Sister’s socks

On The Spice Market shawl:

The yarn problem however is a real problem. It looked so nice grouped together.  You know that nagging feeling lurking in the dark recesses of your mind, that you totally ignore? I should have paid attention to it. I thought pairing Black Trillium with Leading Men Fiber Arts was a good match. 

  • Should have read the pattern
  • Should have swatched. 

I did neither before the trip. Knitting through the Prarie landscape. But I have stopped working on it. I listened to that nagging voice. 

 I have the wrong main yarn. It needs to have more color and/or tonal contrast from all of the gradients. And it needs to be closer in weight to the gradient. AND the pattern calls for 6 contrasting colors. My gradient only has 5. 

Do I have an alternative main color at home? Yes & no. Yes, same weight. No, undyed. Is it worth the risk to dye it myself? Nope. Not when I want to finish this whole thing in 3 weeks. 

Just before frogging On The Spice Market shawl

Scratch all that! I did frog what was started. And re-started substituting the main color as the first gradient. I’m ignoring the different weights and low contrast. 

Progressing ahead On The Spice Market shawl

Fading full rainbow

Murray Baker Bridge on the Illinois River

Saw Saint John Paul II in mosaic

But it does get worse. 

I left my wallet at the last hotel. Housekeeping found it. The hotel is sending it.  I wonder if it will be empty. Not empty. Nothing removed. Yeah! Good job, Marriott Pere Marquette

What Was I Thinking?!?

I made two big mistakes. One is too much. The other not enough. 

Too Much

Apparently experience doesn’t create mental shift in my buying habits. 

Experience: I don’t like wearing lace weight or really lacy shawls, especially ones with silk. 

Buying habit: I continue to buy lace weight yarn WITH silk. 

Very pretty Lazy Cat lace weight yarn from DFW Yarn Crawl

What was I thinking?!?

Oh yeah, obligatory purchasing to support a small LYS & indie dyer, i.e. guilt buying. 

Apparently, the cognitive dissonance continue with my assumption that this yarn would work perfectly with the new pattern, Ketterdam, by Laura Linneman. 

  • Color: variegated OK
  • Yardage: 800 OK
  • Weight: fingering NOT OK!

I did attend Laura’s Yarn class last year. I know better that lace weight yarns (2 ply) don’t have enough structure for cables. The edging on the Ketterdam shawl has a cable detail. 

Bonus information: The linen stitch completely disappears in lace weight yarn. 

Even so, I swatched it to confirm. Yep, I’m an idiot. 

Sorry, I ripped out the swatch in disgust. Wasn’t thinking about blogging about it. 

No amount of searching Ravelry for a different pattern is going to fix my problem. I don’t really like all those spidery lacy shawls. Change that, I don’t like them in me. I think they are beautiful and love the idea of it as a milestone or accomplishment. But not to wear. Nope. Don’t like wearing them. 

Not Enough

Nope. I really really want to knit the Ketterdam shawl. This wouldn’t normally be a problem with a large fingering weight yarn stash.  There’s some really pretty indie dyed purple, or that Kollage black & white, or plenty of Knitpicks. Except right now, they are all out of reach. I am 200 miles away from my stash with now only ONE knitting project to work on.  

Only one knitting project

Note to self:

  • Must spin fingering 3-4 ply
  • Must NOT spin lacy 2 ply 

But of course, that’s exactly what I’m starting to ply.

(Apparently I hit the wrong button and published this prematurely. Oh well….)

Roadtrip: in Nashville to weed Mom’s garden, take her shopping and deliver a custom bag. 

Custom crossbody bag

Road Trip: Fort Wayne (missed it)

  • Fiber events? No
  • Yarn shop? Yes!!!! Simply Socks OMG!  I get to see all the gorgeous yarns she posts on Instagram!!!   Well, no. The shop is only open to the public ONE DAY a week. Bummer, missed that one on my fiber bucket list (but hubby just told me he has to make another trip to the area).
  • Other Yarn shops? Yes!!! One and it’s walking distance AND has Shibui yarns. So heading to Knitting Off Broadway.  Had a great time there. Suffered decision fatigue. I had only 3 skeins of Shibui Linen and want 2-3 more skeins for a tunic. Matching color is always a problem. So, I was trying other ideas. Settling on Aurora by Shellie Anderson.

    Aurora by Shellie Anderson

      Then of course, regretted it late in the night. (I don’t really need a little woolie warn vest.) Had a chance to get the right yarns the next day. Took a chance on the Shibui Linen and Twig. They are close enough. 
  • Some Hedgehog Fibres

    Knitting Off Broadway in Ft. Wayne, IN

  • Art museums? Yes. Walking distance? Sort of.  Worth the distance & rain? No. Next time. 

The drive home was pleasant. We stopped in Jeffersonville, IN, just across the river from Louisville, KY. Cute little town. Lots of upgrades made to the waterfront area. Lots of effort to keep the historic areas intact. 

Panorama of Louisville on Ohio river

Finishing the new Downtown Crossing bridge

Schimpffs Confectionary

Cutest candy shop, Schimpffs Confectionary, with all the vintage maker details. 

Spinning Decision part 2

As I mentioned a few weeks ago, I decided against getting a spinning wheel and decided to whole-heartedly pursue spindle spinning instead. 

It was the right decision. 

At the SSK retreat in July, I wasn’t able to get into the lace spinning workshop. Hopefully, enough friends could give me some pointers.  Emily of Fibre Town podcast, provided a breakout session on supported spindling.  Very helpful tips and when Emily said supported is ideal for road trips, I got excited. 

Big sister addition to the spindle family

I bought 2 spindles at the SSK market. A large Strong Heart walnut Jeri Brock Turkish to match my medium sized Strong Heart in Koa. It will be for plying turtles (cops) spun on the Koa. 

Akerworks spindle and extra shaft

And an Akerworks medium drop spindle with the trillium whorl and an extra shaft. 

Experimenting with them. I flipped the Akerworks upside-down to see if it could be used as a supported spindle. The first cop was wound counterclockwise. AND I had put the whorl on upside-down.  So I couldn’t leave the first cop on. Wound it onto a plying ball. 

Watched a few more YouTube videos on supported spindles. Lori Rhone of Deerfield Creations was the most helpful. Another helpful video was from The Woolery. And Emily of Fibre Town just posted a short podcast episode demonstrating the supported spindle. 

1st Plying ball of merino spun on supported spindle

After some fits & starts, there’s less fiddling setting the hook  for the top whorl, flicking the spindle and adding the finished single on to the cop. Pretty good on the car, unless the roads are so bad, you’re bouncing around too much. 

At first, I thought I was spinning faster on supported. That might have been true last week. But I started drop spinning again. I am definitely faster on the drop spindle and much more consistent. 

Clearly I still a novice about fiber. I’m playing now with fiber that has lots of little bits of random bits and shiny Angelina.  On supported, very difficult to get a fine single. It’s more like a thin art yarn…very slubby. Interestingly, I switched to drop spinning (same spindle) and I now get a very fine consistent single. Guessing, the weight of the spindle with a cop and a faster, longer spin are what makes the difference. 

Will need to check with my spinning friends. 

Two knitting projects and spindle spinning all live in my one hobo bag now. A wheel would never fit in my bag. I can easily switch between all three projects with easy. 

It’s working perfectly for road trips. When my hands get tired doing one, switching to something different is easy. 

Adan of Akerworks said I could request a pointy tip on the shaft that could be used for supported spindling. It’s a sharp tip. 

Haven’t figured out a spindle bag yet. Although I’m starting to think a simple satin drawstring bag or Japanese bento bag for now. 

FABLE Continues

FABLE (Fabric or Fiber Acquisition Beyond Life Expectancy)

With Hancock Fabrics stores now closed, I have a scarcity mentality. I feel l HAVE to buy what I want when I find it. No matter what. Jo-Ann Fabrics, Hobby Lobby, or Walmart just doesn’t have the fabrics I love. Those are my local choices now, sorry, only if I’m desperate. 

Sorry too, online fabric shops, I need to see and feel the fabric before I buy. 


Or it’s my version of FOMO (Fear Of Missed Opportunity)


What can I say…my favorite fabric, 100% handkerchief linen, at 60% off at a store with zero customer service & 900 miles on a road trip. I’m buying. I haven’t visited SR Harris Fabrics in 30 years. It hasn’t changed. If you are easily intimidated by an abundance of choice don’t even bother. You will be overwhelmed. 

Aisle of linen & linen blends at SR Harris Fabrics

In 30 minutes, I bought chambray blue, cranberry, and navy. Took a chance on linen single knits in charcoal grey and teal. Knowing the hand knitted linen tends to bias (look wonky crooked), I’m a bit worried these might do the same. 

knit & woven linen from Harris Fabrics for dresses & tunics

That’s a lot of potential summer outfits. 

And how could I resist 50% off decorator fabric remnants for my bags. More linen and cotton. It might have taken 30 minutes to find good choices. 

Linen & cotton for project bags

Then there was the novelty fabrics I really was looking for…not as successful there. You would think I’d find something worthwhile in 8 long, unorganized, rarely labeled, aisles of novelty prints. 2 hours of hunting these aisle with few good choices. 

1 of 8 aisles of novelty prints

No regrets. 
I feel much stronger than six months ago. I can do this. Really I can. 

Happening soon, another opportunity to hunt at another favorite fabric shopping destination in Dallas.  But must stick to specific shopping list for here.

  1. A warm grey lining for custom cross body bag. 
  2. Those novelty prints. 

So much for shrinking my existing fabric stash. 

Roadtrip Pictures

Quincy bridge on the Mississippi river

Sunrise over the St. Croix river

Morning walk along the St. Croix river

Waiting for hubby at airport

Early morning visitor, a pileated woodpecker

Standard Minnesota weekend on a lake

Must see Largest Ball of Twine in Darwin Mn

Old Washington county courthouse jail

Jackpot find of handkerchief linen and knitted linen

Hopelessly looking for specific novelty print cotton