I bought a spinning wheel!

Pic-free post because I didn’t think to take pictures today, but…

I drove down to Frankfort, KY to The Woolery take an intro to spinning class and pick a wheel.  I was surprised that the wheel I fell in love with was the Lendrum, because the thing looks too mod and silly to me.  But of the five or six wheels I treadled on, it was very clearly my favorite.

The class was great.  Since I already know how to spin on a spindle, the first hour of class wasn’t entirely necessary but it was good to spin with an experienced spindler right there to help me with the nagging issues I’ve been having. The instructor Nancy was incredibly helpful, and I’ll be going back for her intermediate spinning class at some point.

They didn’t have the Lendrum wheel in stock (which was probably a good thing – I had other things to do today when I got home!) but I should get one in my grubby little hands in a couple weeks.

So Excited!

Quick Tip – Needle Sizes

I bought most of the knitting needles I own around the same time, and it seems that they are all going kaput around the same time too.

The interchangeable needles are having this problem:

So I decided it was time for a replacement/upgrade.  The same package that brought me a turkish spindle also had this in it:


A shiny new set of HiyaHiya interchangeable circs. I was eager to dive into the project on the broken needle shown above, but as I’m away from home this summer, I didn’t have my needle sizer to figure out what I was knitting on.  (In retrospect, I could have just checked my Ravelry project page, but that would have been the easy solution so of course I didn’t think of it.)

What to do? I took some white string (actually some white single I spun a while back and use as a leader yarn on my spindle), wrapped it around the broken needle, and drew a line with a pen.

The pen marks will only line up around another needle if it’s the same diameter as the original.

Correct diameter – the ink lines match up

Wrong size needle – ink marks don’t match up

This idea is related to an ancient form of cryptography called a scytale.  People would send secret messages by wrapping the notes around a stick of a certain diameter; only those with a stick of the same diameter could read the message.

I think this is the first time my academic research has informed my knitting – I’m tickled!

Georgia!

I’m in Athens, Georgia for most of this summer, working as an instructor for a summer camp for gifted kids.  I’ve never done anything like this before, and by the time I get back to my dorm room (!) for the day I am utterly spent. As someone who had never worked with minors before and never went to summer camp, I had no idea how much work goes into these things. I got more training to teach at a three-week summer camp than I got before teaching university courses.

My crafty time is limited, but I have been knitting and/or spinning some every night – probably a bit more than I should be, but after overseeing a room full of inquisitive fourteen-year-olds for seven hours, this introvert needs alone time  more than she needs new friends. The green blanket of doom looks about the same, but I’ve made noticeable progress on these double-knit mittens (crappy phone pics, sorry):

Double-knit mitten in progress

The same mitten, inside-out

And I have been trying to fit in some exercise too by taking longs walks around this beautiful and hellaciously hot University of Georgia campus.  I’m really enjoying the gardenias growing outdoors, in Ohio they are a houseplant and finicky ones at that.

Partially open gardenia flower

Other than that I’m gearing up for the Tour de Fleece and Thing Which May or May Not Be Called Ravelympics.

Hope the summer is treating you well where you are!