Saturday, August 30, 2008

Pleasure Principle (Habu, Mini Combs, Cormo and Goldregen)









I'm no Spring Chicken. I'm at the point in my life where I want my leisure activity's to be as pleasurable as possible as my "pull date" looms closer. I've found that knitting lace and spinning are wonderful, relaxing and rewarding activity's and I have great fun experimenting with supplies and tools. See above the center for "Goldregen", another Herbert Niebling pattern from Burda E 903. I'm knitting it using Habu orgazine degummed indigo dyed silk (NS-18J, 21d/10x2). A skein contains 1,400 yds for 2 ounces. I'm using US 0000 needles and I'll try to get a better shot once I can get enough stitches to go onto circular needles. The silk is slick, a little crispy in texture and it's best not to drop a stitch as it wants to slither away. Beautiful stuff. However, if you want to get any I suggest you pay the extra money to have it wound onto a cone since it is very difficult to wind into a ball and wants to unwind itself into a tangled mess. Having washed about 2/3 of the Cormo fleece I bought at Dixon, I have a new appreciation for anyone willing to clean it for me, not to mention color it. I purchased the pretty Blue Cormo Lamb fleece from, The Fiber Denn. While the fibers are not as long as the fleece I purchased from Cormo Sheep & Wool Farm they are very soft and should spin up nicely. But first, I have to prep the fiber and that brings me to my new tools. Up until now, I have been using a flick comb to tease a lock at a time to spin from. While it works, it's a little tough on my hands and the amount of fiber I can prepare this way at one sitting is pretty limited. See above the mini combs that my sister bought for me as my birthday is in a few months. Made from Cherry wood(though you can pick whatever wood you like best) , they were made to order from The Wheel Thing and are constructed by a gentleman named Alvin Ramer who lives in Canada. These combs come with a stand that holds the combs safe and secure when not in use. The stand can be clamped to a table and there is a slot where the stationary comb can be inserted, held in place at different angles with a pin so that you can easily comb locks. This set comes with a tool to straighten the tines if one ends up out of alignment and two sea shells with holes drilled into the center to act as a diz. As for how to use these combs, I have looked at a few videos on U Tube which illustrate how to use them. One in particular from Manda Crafts was very instructive though it's on the use of English Wool Combs rather than mini combs. I haven't had time to try out the new toys yet but I'll get a few pictures and let you know how it works out :-)

12 comments:

Rosa said...

Such amazing visual delights. I love the silk. The color is very light and airy. I've never seen this new accessory. Thanks for pointing it out. I can't wait to see how you've gone through the locks.

fleegle said...

I gave some serious thought to buying some of that silk at Avril, but opted for some silk blends. I am a coward about knitting fine silk because I drop so many stitches. Your knitting looks gorgeous--unstretched as it is--love the color and sheen.

Laritza said...

Lovely! another Niebling, he IS endless source of knitting and inspiration. I love to comb wool and the yarn that comes out is very very nice!

LittleBerry said...

that silk is a gorgeous colour... but don't envy you the slippiness of it!!!

The fibre is a beautiful colour of blue and those combs look vicious!!! but I agree whole heartedly life is difficult enough without making it more difficult for yourself.... no matter what the age!

missalicefaye said...

fabulous combs! can't wait to see how you like working with them. :)

Opal said...

Size US0000 Needles? OMG! I'm just boggling over that one fact. I can't wrap my head around it! :-o

Jane said...

Dear Rosa,

I love the color of this thread as well which is why I have a second skein in reserve. I love my mini combs. I looked at a lot of them on-line before I settled on this set. I will post after I give them a try.

Jane said...

Dear fleegle,

I know what you mean. I stared at this thread at the Habu stall at Stitches for a long time before my sister just grabbed them and bought them for me. She knew I wanted them and was conflicted LOL.I think what you did purchase at Avril is lovely! Having dropped stitches does suck so I'm "trying" to be carful.

Jane said...

Dear Laritiza,

I really do love those Niebling patterns. I think it's clear he's become my favorite designer to knit with LOL. And the good thing is that there are tons of patterns so I'm not going to run out for a long time. I am looking forward to giving those mini combs a try. Anything is going to be easier than flick-combing each lock.

Jane said...

Dear littleberry,

Though there are several shades of Indigo at Habu for this thread and I have ordred two others, I think this color is my favorite. The mini combs are sharp but a much less lethal alternative than 4 pitch English Wool combs. My sister says that English Wool combs were used as instruments of tortue in the old days and I can belive it.I guess if I really wanted my life to be easier I would not try to comb and spin my own yarn or knit on size US 0000 or smaller LOL.

Jane said...

Dear missalicefaye,

I'm looking forward to giving them a try and it will be my first time using a diz as well!

Jane said...

Dear Opal,

I'm all about making it interesting :-) I did try US 00000 and US 000000 on this thread but the silk wanted bigger needles LOL