Two Ewes Fiber Adventures: A Knitting, Spinning, Crochet, and Weaving Show (general)

This is the first of three parts detailing Kelly's fiber adventures while she is in DC as an E. Kika de la Garza Fellow with the USDA.  She talks about what she is knitting during her travels, and she reviews the the current exhibit at the Textile Museum associated with The George Washington University.  She also talks about textiles at the Smithsonian Museum of American History.  Due to length restrictions of Garageband for iPad, her portion of the episode is broken into three parts--20a1, 20a2, and 20a3.  Marsha was also traveling for fiber adventures this week and the Two Ewes hope to be able to post "the B side" of episode 20 as well!  

This series is brought to you raw and uneditied because we couldn't wait until we got home to share our adventures with you!  So if you are a new listener, first of all, welcome!  But also you may want to start with a more typical episode. Also, be sure to listen to these segments in order, starting with 20a1.  Don't forget to visit our blog at

Direct download: Episode_20a1.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 7:16pm PDT

In this episode Kelly and Marsha give updates on finished knitting projects, ongoing knitting projects, and other fiber projects that are in the the planning stages. They also talk about Marsha's spinning class, crochet, Kelly's new beekeeping adventure, and her upcoming fellowship in Washington DC.

Kelly has one sleeve done and the other moving along on the purple sweater she is making.  The project uses the Cherry Vanilla pattern by Thea Colman.  She battled the sleeve slog by starting a new project!  The Ava Tunic by Jade Fletcher is a chevron striped dress or top for a little girl, size 18 mos. to toddler.  She is knitting it in Spud and Chloe Sweater in teal and yellow. 

Marsha finished her Neskowin Shell by Kay Hopkins that she made as part of our Warmth of Summer KAL.  She finished the body of her Juno Cardigan by yellowcosmo and started the first sleeve. Marsha is concerned the sweater may not have as much positive ease as she had hoped, but she was limited by the amount of yarn she had. Blocking will probably relax fabric the the sweater may be perfect. The continuing mystery of fit!

Marsha is thinking of next knitting the Wispy Willow Cardigan by Cheryl Beckerich using the coned blue yarn she picked up at the NoCKRs Retreat. "middleagepearl" made this darling cardigan for our Warmth of Summer KAL. Or she is thinking of making Lanata, a pretty lace cardigan by Amy Christoffers using Limbo that a friend gave her.


Marsha reports on the first half of an introductory spinning classes she is taking.


And then we talk about bees!  It is swarm season and Kelly talks about the public perception of a swarm vs. the reality of a swarm.  Here are a couples websites that provides more information about swarms.  Habitat for Honeybees and the Seattle Urban Bee Project.  If you want to get even more scientific, check out Honeybee Democracy by Thomas Seeley of the Cornell department of neurobiology and behavior or read this shorter article on the topic (the article has a great picture of a swarm).  Fascinating!  If everyone had this information, no bee swarms would ever face extermination! 

The documentary about bees that Marsha mentions is More Than Honey (2012) by Markus Imhoof.

Here are some others that Marsha has not watched but sound interesting.

Queen of the Sun: What are the bees telling us? (2010) by Tagger Siegel

Vanishing of the Bees (2009) by George Langworthy and Maryam Henein

Who Killed the Honey Bees? (2009) by James Erskine

The Last Beekeeper (2008) by Jeremy Simmons

If you are interested in bees and pollinators other than honeybees and some information on "bee-positive" plants and gardening, check out the UC Berkeley Urban Bee Lab.

And finally, if you're wondering why Marsha was at Steven's Pass for six hours, click here to see why. For obvious reasons she will only watch his videos when he is home safe.  Don't watch if you don't want to hear a teenage boy swear. ;-)

Direct download: Episode_19_final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:36pm PDT

Marsha participated in the large Pacific Northwest LYS Tour 2015 .  The tour was five days and 26 yarn shops from Bellingham to Kent.  Marsha had limited time so picked four shops she had never visited.

Her first day she visited Tolt Yarn and Wool in Carnation. This shop specializes in local yarns. Marsha bought Tracie Too in Autumn Rust from Imperial Yarn and a worsted yarn in sage green from Thirteen Mile Lamb and Wool Co.  She also went to Quintessential Knits in Duvall. 

The second day she went to The Knittery in Renton and Maker's Mercantile in Kent.

Kelly is continuing her work on her Grape Vanilla sweater (using the Cherry Vanilla pattern by Thea Coleman .  There are also a couple of pairs of socks that get an occasional row.  Speaking of occasional rows, her SF Giants cowl, I Don't Care if I Never Get Back, is looking great!  Two rows get added after each game so this is a fun way to commemorate the season.  This project uses the Crackerjack cowl recipe by Stacey Simpson Duke.

Kelly's bees have been in the hive for about a month.  What an obsession they have become!

We had a winner in our giveaway of the book Wanderlust: 46 Modern Knits for Bohemian Style, by Tanis Gray, published by Interweave/F+W.  Listen to find out who the winner was! Thanks to all who entered the contest in our Ravelry Group!

Some other links that came up in our conversation:  KnitSpinFarm Podcast by Joanna Spring who has Clun Forest sheep.  These are one of the breeds of sheep that Marsha spoke about.  Nuno Felt is the name of the felting that is done with fabric.  Here is a tutorial website with lots of photos of projects.  

For photos visit our Two Ewes Fiber Adventures blog!

Direct download: Episode_18_final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:02pm PDT

Subscribe on iTunes here, on Stitcher Radio here.  

In this episode we give an update on the projects we are working on, or in Kelly's case, projects she is not working on. Keep reading to learn why. We also review the new pattern book Wanderlust: 46 Modern Knits for Bohemian Style  by Tanis Gray, published in March 2015 by Interweave Press.  The book retails for $18.99 US and $20.99 Canadian.  Kelly's Aunt Betty (efisher930 on Ravelry) joins us for the review discussion.  Check out the Ravelry group for information about a giveaway!  The Two Ewes will be giving away an e-copy of the book thanks to Interweave Press.

Kelly has been very busy at work and caring for her new chicks who are now teenagers and have been moved to the garden and into their new home "The Egg Plant."  She has also been busy with her latest project--bees! She is "1hundredprojects" after all. :-)

 Kelly's ongoing projects have been languishing due to grading exams, moving the chicks, and starting the bees.  However, there was the urge to start a project that couldn't be denied! First a super-quick cowl with size 50 needles! No pattern, just moss stitch until the yarn ran out.

 Then one of the patterns from the Wanderlust book, the Brubaker Cowl by Mindy Wilkes.

Marsha continues to work on her Neskowin Shell by Kay Hopkins that she is making as part of our Warmth of Summer KAL. She has completed the first half of the shell and has used 3 1/4 balls of her yarn, Debbie Bliss Juliet. She is keeping track because she has replaced the drop stitch pattern with stockinette She thinks she will need one more ball.  Marsha finished the yoke of her cardigan Juno by Connie Peng. She is using Blue Moon Fiber Arts Silky Victoria.

She joined Kelly in making a Crackerjack Cowl by Stacy Simpson Duke for her team, the Seattle Mariners. This has been a fun project and is making Marsha into a baseball fan despite the fact that previously she has been a mediocre fan at best. :-)  Marsha may need to get a Mariner's project bag from Front Range Bags Etsy shop where Kelly got her fabulous, new SF Giants project bag!

Marsha also talks about the swatching she has done with with yarn from the Northern California Knitters Retreat "Destash" room. The first is with Pernelle Insouciance in a soft blue. Marsha estimates she has 936 yards. 

In previous podcast episodes Kelly has talked about knitting two to three different yarns together and she is currently making a Featherweight Cardigan using three yarns. Kelly inspired Marsha so when she saw a cone mystery blue yarn with about 1,400 yards at the retreat she knew it was for her!  She swatched with three yarns from Kelly's stash. In the picture, the top is with white cotton, the middle with a beige wool, and the blue with a light blue linen. Kelly also has discussed that plant fibers benefit from being handled roughly and even put int the dryer. Marsha gave the swatches a good thrashing and they are beautifully soft!

There is still lots of time to join our Warmth of Summer KAL. Details are on our Ravelry group's discussion boards.

We also talked about Shoes of Prey where you can design your own shoes.

Direct download: Episode_17_final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:21pm PDT

In this episode Marsha and Kelly talk about the the Northern California Knitters Retreat (#NoCKRs on Instagram for more photos). The FABULOUS and FUN retreat was held at the St. Francis Retreat Center.  We had such a great time!  Thanks to the organizers and to Duren Dyeworks and Kicks and Giggles for donating the door prizes that we won.  Thanks also to Dizzy Blonde Studios, Miss Babs,

Alana Dakos of Never Not Knitting, Buffy Ann Designs, and Gnome Acres for all the goodies in our NoCKRs bags.

We had fun knitting and meeting new friends. We also found treasures in the destash room and made some stitch markers.

The charity for the retreat was Knitted Knockers.  Participants donated over 90 of them for women who have had mastectomies.

There was a show and tell of knitwear that led us to yet another discussion of fit!  We know we said we wouldn't discuss it again for awhile, but we learned some interesting things by looking at all those sweaters. 

After the retreat we enjoyed fabulous burgers at JJ's in San Juan Bautista.

After our  conversation about the retreat, I podcast with some feathered co-hosts about some of my upcoming adventures.  Subscribe in iTunes.

Find us on Stitcher.

Direct download: episode_16_final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:32pm PDT

In this episode Marsha and Kelly have a phone conversation about Marsha's finished knitting projects, both of their current knitting projects,  Marsha's new interest in baseball, and the ever-perplexing topic of the fit of a knit garment.  The Custom Fit patterns are a huge breakthrough and are teaching knitters a lot, but there are other components of how a sweater fits.  For example, the texture of the yarn and what the wearer is comfortable with.

Direct download: episode_15_final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:22pm PDT

Join Marsha and Kelly as the Two Ewes Ravelry group has its first Knit Along!  We will be knitting summery items between April 1 and July 1, 2015.  More details can be found in the Ravelry Group,
Meanwhile, the two talk together about their recently finished and recently started projects and Kelly provides information about wet finishing for weaving that just might help when you knit with linen or cotton. It also might be helpful for knitters who have just started weaving with a rigid heddle loom.

Direct download: episode_14_final_hq.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:13pm PDT

Kelly and Marsha met up in Portland, Oregon for the Rose City Yarn Crawl from March 5-8. Can you believe there are fifteen yarn shops in the Portland area? We didn't have time to visit each shop but sure gave it a try. In this episode we discuss our experience of the yarn crawl, talk about Marsha's woolen spinning in the hotel room, and share information about three indie dyers we met during the crawl.  We hold off discussing project updates until the next episode. It was so much fun to put this podcast together while we were actually in the same room!

Direct download: Episode_13_final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:00pm PDT

Listeners have asked us about our distance walking so in this podcast we talk about our walking adventures and, not to worry, we also talk about fiber, including knitting, spinning and some weaving.

We are excited that we found a way to record our phone conversation! It's almost like we are in the same room and not separated by a state! Together we discuss how we each came to the sport of distance walking, how we train, and some of the challenges and pleasures we each find in training.

Direct download: podcast_episode_11_final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:36pm PDT

Marsha and Kelly talk about their Cast On Five challenge and all the knitting and weaving that has and hasn't happened yet!  Kelly talks about knitting lace and the progress of her Niebling piece.  Marsha talks about her spinning and the handspun and hand-dyed yarn that she has been knitting with.  The Two Ewes announce contest winners, and Marsha talks about her adventures outside of the fiber world.

Direct download: Podcast_episode_10_final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:01pm PDT