Two Ewes Fiber Adventures: A Podcast about Knitting, Spinning, Weaving, Crochet, Dyeing-- All the Ways to Play with Yarn and Wool

Marsha and Kelly start off talking about Kelly's beautiful commute down the Salinas Valley (aka John Steinbeck's Long Valley).  She hasn't stopped to take photos, but here is an example of what she sees two days a week.

As she commutes, she has been listening to podcasts--many of them non-knitting related.  One that she discovered and just had to try because it sounded so unusual is the Chameleon Breeder Podcast . The topic of raising chameleons led to the topic of raising bugs and this week's episode is about stick and leaf insects.

Even more fascinating is the discovery that there is such a thing as the  Ovogram insect egg swap service. Insect breeders use it the same way knitters use a mini-skein swap!

The guest on this week's Chameleon episode owns the  Full Throttle Feeders bug supply company. Kelly is now addicted to this informational podcast!  On her commute today she also listened to True Crime Garage. Another fun (but totally irreverent) true crime podcast is White Wine, True Crime.

Marsha fills us in on the The Seattle explosion that leveled businesses across the street from the Fiber Gallery. 

Marsha finished spinning our Two Ewes premium CVM and mohair that Kelly sent her to test. It's beautiful and the mohair reflects the light to give the yarn a luster. Marsha has about 200 yards.

Marsha continues to work on her Edie T-shirt by Isabell Kraemer in Hempathy. She's making good progress in spite of the puppy responsibilities. ;-)

Kelly has finished Darth Vader in her Star Wars Amigurumi project.  She also finished the Bourbon Socks.  Sweet Georgia yarn is scrumptious!  She has finished about half of the yarn for her mom and has more ready to ply.  

Not much else has been touched in terms of projects.  However, she is looking forward to participating in the  Division One, Leave It Un-KAL that is being hosted on Ravelry by the Caithness Craft Podcast and the Twinset Designs Podcast.  Marsha may have to join in, too!

Marsha's puppy, Enzo, is doing well and getting BIG...over 24 pounds! Marsha talks about puppy class and Enzo's progress. If you want to see more pictures of Enzo check out his Instagram feed  @enzo_fuesel or Marsha's  @mfuesel.

The Two Ewes are excited to offer batts, as well as the handspun mini-skeins made from them, as premiums for any listeners who would like to support the podcast!  There is a limited amount of CVM and mohair still available for premiums of either batts or mini-skeins.  There is also the gray fleece from Charlotte (that Kelly is using for the Funky Grandpa) that has also been blended with mohair.  Any contribution of $15 or more will qualify for the premiums.  Kelly will contact you to determine whether to send fiber (two approximately 1-ounce batts) or mini-skeins (two approximately 80-yard minis).  If you are interested, please click the donate button at the show notes!

Direct download: Episode_37_final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:17pm PDT


In this episode Kelly and Marsha give updates on projects and the goals we set for ourselves that was suppose to be two weeks but ended up being a month. Kelly has been walking but Marsha hasn't, but she has a great excuse! :-) It has been raining like crazy in Seattle and she is on puppy duty. Enzo is now almost twelve weeks old and can be crated for 2-3 hours, so Marsha has no more excuses!

Kelly finished a Storm Trooper and is now waiting for more safety eyes in order to continue with other characters. First on the list is Darth Vader! The pattern designer, Lucy Collin, has a great Flickr page with photos of all her Star Wars creations (including some that aren't in the pattern book).  She also has a blog post where she talks about the pattern book project and another where she lists all the yarn colors she used.

Kelly has been spinning like crazy on her mother's Pebble Substitute.  The Bourbon Socks got some work over the Stitches West weekend and are close to finished.  (Got finished between recording and publishing the podcast!)  The stitch pattern is something I made up in order to show off the variegation.  See my project notes to get the stitch pattern for your own variegated socks!  Progress on the I Love My Husband (#ILMH) scarf is steady but slow.

Marsha has not been knitting very much, but did start the Edie T-shirt by Isabell Kraemer. She is using Elsebeth Lavold Hempathy in a light blue called Ionic Blue.

Marsha tells about finding at the Goodwill twenty balls (100 yards each) of 100% mercerized cotton fingering weight yarn. Marsha got to wondering what "mercerized" means and tells what she found out on Wikipedia. Here is the article. Kelly and Marsha discussed having a dye-a-thon with the cotton during Marsha's visit in April.

At the end of the episode, Kelly podcasts from the trail during her 12-mile training walk the day before she went to Stitches West.  She shares distance training strategy and some of the ways she tricks herself into putting in the mileage.  Trails in her area are beautiful, the one below included a view of Moss Landing and the Monterey Bay (if you look closely in the photo, you can see the Moss Landing towers).  Here is a link to some walking training schedules that she has used.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Direct download: Episode_36b_bonus_final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:04pm PDT

Kelly and Marsha talk about Kelly's recent weekend at Stitches West!  One of the year's biggest West Coast yarn events was more than a shopping trip, it was a chance to meet listeners, podcasters, and other yarny friends.  The conversation ranges from the items on the sales floor to tattoos, from purchases to civil war era yarn, and from starstruck silliness to the appeal of the collaborative business model. No show notes for this special episode.  Links and photos will be included in show notes for our next regular episode, due out soon.  http://twoewesfiber.com

Direct download: episode_36_final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:39pm PDT

Marsha and Kelly catch you up on all the things that have been going on with them over that last month.  New projects, new goals, new items in the Ravelry queue, new excuses pets family members, and new realizations about time management!  Press play and listen as we talk about our fiber adventures! 

Kelly has one newly finished project,  Toddler hats that she made for Robert's co-worker's daughter.  One is plain stockinette with some embroidered flowers and the other has a texture pattern.  Neither was made using a pattern, but information about them is on Kelly's Ravelry page.

She also has a newly started project.  She made Yoda from the Star Wars Crochet kit.  The designer is Lucy Collin and between her blog and the Flickr account she has with all the different Star Wars figures (some not in the kit) there are enough ideas for an entire galaxy of figures!

Two other projects got significant activity over the last month. The Sheep to sweater project and the Big Sur Bourbon Socks

Speaking of Big Sur, Kelly met her two-week goals with respect to walking.  She repeated the same goal for the next two weeks and will check in again.  The training for the Big Sur 21 Miler is going well.  The other two-week goal, finishing three skeins of the yarn for her mom, was not so successful.  She has finished one skein.

The Two Ewes blog can now be found using the url http://twoewesfiber.com or http://twoewesfiberadventures.com  Also, you can now find Two Ewes Fiber Adventures on facebook.  The new episodes will be published there in addition to this blog, iTunes, and Stitcher.  If you enjoy listening, please join us at our Two Ewes Fiber Adventures Ravelry Group.

Marsha and Kelly discuss spinning the batts of California variegated mutant (CVM)  that Kelly has made and is sharing with listeners. The breed is often  available at the Monterey County wool auction, but is classified as critical by the Livestock Conservancy.  The wool and mohair blend is spinning up easily, but does have some vegetable matter.  It makes a nice, lofty, woolen-spun yarn, but has some sheen due to the mohair.

Marsha finished her Mystery Wool Cardigan made from coned wool she found at the Goodwill. The pattern is #241 Neck Down V-Neck Shaped Cardigan by Diane Soucy from Knitting Pure & Simple. She loves the fit! Marsha talks about the process of washing the finished cardigan.

She continues to work on her Striped Study Shawl by Veera Valimaki. She is worried she won't have enough yarn to finish the pumpkin stripes.

Marsha's BIG news is she got a standard poodle puppy named Sovereign's Formula One or "Enzo". He was born December 5, 2015 and joined our family January 29, 2016. Marsha is looking forward to long walks with Enzo. A new puppy is a huge undertaking so Marsha has not met her goal of walking three times a week.

Kelly recommended the dog training book by the Monks of New Skete. A terrific book!   

The Two Ewes are excited to offer CVM and mohair blend batts, as well as the handspun mini-skeins made from them, as premiums for any listeners who would like to support the podcast! Visit our blog at http://twoewesfiber.com and click the donate button to contribute.

Direct download: Episode_35_final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:35pm PDT

Knitting, some spinning, lots of yarn project planning, and some fiber processing are the highlights of this episode. Kelly and Marsha do some goal setting with two-week goals and discussion of long-term projects.

Kelly happily finished two projects that have been on the needles 9 months or more. First, the Hoarfrost sock pattern by Louise Tillbrook was used to make the Frosty Mint Julep socks.

Second, Kelly finished the Niebling Doily Herbert Niebling lace patterns have an Arts and Crafts era style that is very distinctive. The Doily Head blog has a great collection of Niebling eye candy for your enjoyment! Kelly started her doily on Christmas day 2014 and finished it just over a year later. It was a fun and challenging project and there will definitely be another Niebling on the needles at some point.

Most of Marsha's projects have not seen much progress since she has been working almost exclusively on her Mystery Wool Cardigan (#241 Neck Down V Neck Shaped Cardigan) by Diane Soucy. The body is almost finished.

She is also considering three T-shirt patterns for her next project.  Edie by Isabell Kraemer, Brandilyn Top by Quenna Lee, and Ricky for All Seasons by Veera Sanon.

Marsha made two goals between now and the next Two Ewes episode. She will walk three times a week and add her training schedule to her calendar. Big Sur 21-Miler, here we come!

Her long term project goal is to complete the Garter Squish afghan by Stephen West. This means unraveling the sweater she made for her father years ago to use as the main color. She has been collecting various colors of worsted yarn, plus some blank yarn to dye, to use for the second color.

Kelly has two new projects on the needles. She is making a stockinette scarf for her husband. It is being made with a LUSCIOUS merino and silk laceweight yarn from Bumblebirch. Good thing the yarn is nice, because the project is on size 3 needles!

She also started a sweater using deep stash handspun!  The Funky Grandpa cardigan, by Maison Rililie Designs, will be a perfect pattern for this handspun yarn in both natural gray and overdyed colors.

Kelly's two week goal is to walk the correct mileage during the next two weeks. No cheating on the training schedule. She will also finish spinning 3 skeins of the Corriedale yarn that she is making for her Mom as a substitute for Shibui Pebble. Long-term, Kelly will be working on putting together the quilt that she started in high school over 30 years ago!

Join our Two Ewes Ravelry Group to become part of the wonderful and supportive Two Ewes community and participate in knit or crochet alongs. Contribute to the continued running of the podcast and get batts or mini skeins by clicking the donate button on the right side bar of the Two Ewes Fiber Adventures blog and making a contribution of $15 or more.

 

Direct download: Episode_34_final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:51pm PDT

Marsha and Kelly celebrate New Year's Eve with some finished projects, some newly started projects and by announcing the winners of the Two Ewes Crochet Along! 

Due to the quick turnaround of this episode, there are few show notes.  However, there are two important items:

Information and and links for Syllabub can be found at Kelly's old blog

The Johnny Cash song that Marsha was thinking of can be found on YouTube here.  And the song that Kelly was talking about was Hurt.

Have a Happy 2016 everyone!

Direct download: Episode_33_final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:00am PDT

Ep 32:  Happy B-Day to Ewe!

In this episode Kelly takes over the beginning of the podcast to throw Marsha a surprise virtual birthday party!  After some fiber adventuring friends send along Birthday wishes, the episode resumes with our knitting, spinning and yarny adventures, including finished objects, current projects, and a fun trip to Portland for Marsha. 

Additional show notes and pictures will follow soon at our show notes blog

Direct download: episode_32_final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:39am PDT

This week Kelly has two finished projects! She finished her Crochet-Along project, the Happy Hippopotamus by Heidi Bears. This was an excellent pattern and the finished hippo is soooooooo darling!

Also finished (but not yet blocked or worn) is the Color Affection, a shawl designed by Veera Valimaki. Kelly had a skein of heavy fingering and 4 skeins of DK and used them all, creating a shawl that is ENORMOUS! It will be a challenge to figure out how to wear it or where to put it once out of the cold :-) The colors are great together and it used some 5+ year old stash, so it is a clear win!

Kelly's current projects all require some knitting repair, so let's not talk about those. ;-)

Marsha isn't finished with her Lanata Cardigan, but she is close. Once sleeve cuffs are on, it's done. She is very happy with the sweater's design (by Amy Christoffers) and with the fabric she got from the German yarn that she used. She also continues to work on her brother Mark's Crazy Scarf from the Stonehedge Crazy yarn.

She is also close to finishing her Stripe Study Shawl, another one of the designs from Veera Valimaki.

In the spinning arena, Kelly is carding a lot! She has challenged herself to make significant progress in processing fleeces that are 5 or more years old. Since this is the last month of the challenge, she has put on the speed! No finished weight estimates yet, but her fiber stash was over 50 lbs at the start of this quarter.

Marsha has been on a learning curve for spinning Lincoln. As a long wool, it is different from what she has spun before. Also, she is hand processing it and spinning from the lock. She is thinking of using it for a blanket, but will wait until the yarn is finished to determine a use. Lincoln is an excellent fleece for rugs, bags and other high wear uses that don't require "next-to-skin softness," but do require a stable and "unbouncy" yarn. Here are examples of some (pre-Ravelry) projects that Kelly has made with Lincoln and Lincoln crosses over the years. Leftovers from these projects are destined to be used in a punch-needle rug hooking project one day soon.

Marsha was a finisher in the frigid Seattle Marathon the weekend after Thanksgiving.  Despite the cold and some challenges to her training in the month before the event she finished! Hurray!!!

Kelly talks a little about the Locke family eggnog recipe and the revised version that can be made in a kitchen bowl rather than a bathtub!

 

Direct download: Episode_31_final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:31am PDT

Welcome new listeners from the Shorty's Sutures and Libsyn Feed podcasts! Welcome also to our listeners from outside the US (including Brazil, Mexico, Sweden, and Norway)!

Marsha and Kelly announce the winners in the Front Range Bags giveaway.  Thanks again to Nancy for offering one of her bags for a prize!  If you aren't the winner, don't despair.  She has generously offered a coupon code for 15% off to Two Ewes listeners!  Listen to the podcast or visit our Ravelry Group for details.  Then go shop for a Front Range Bag!

Marsha had quite a bit of knitting time while at the hospital with her son.  Ben had a bad bicycle accident, but is now doing much better.  While at the trauma center she made lots of progress on the Mark's Crazy Scarf out of Stonehedge Crazy (mill ends).  She has also been working on the Stripe Study Shawl by Veera Valimaki.  She is using the yarn she created at Yarnia in Portland.  Despite all the knitting time, she has no finished projects this time.

Kelly is still working on her Color Affection (also by Veera Valimaki).  She has used most of two skeins of the peacock blue, most of the large skein of spring green, and has just started on the second skein of brown yarn.  She made some modifications to the color pattern so that she could see more color interactions and use more yarn.  All that is left is a large band of solid brown at the bottom of the shawl, but it has become so large that each row takes soooooo loooooong.  

During a Veteran's Day camping trip in The Clubhouse, Kelly also made progress on the Hippo (pattern by Heidi Bears).  Alas, not enough progress to be able to claim a finished project!  She also brought the drum carder so she could continue her fleece processing obsession.  The most recent batts are natural colored California Variegated Mutant blended with hand-dyed mohair locks.  Both are from very deep stash.

The Indie Designer Gift-Along starts on Thursday, November 19.  Over 5,000 independent designers have their patterns available for 25% off.  Knitters and crocheters who have purchased these patterns can participate in a 6-week Gift-Along between November 19 and December 31.  See the Indie Gift Along group on Ravelry to check out the pattern bundles and the GAL threads.  

A few crochet patterns that Kelly is considering are:

Etheria cowl by Julia Trice

True Love shawl and Latticework Cardigan by Michele DuNaier

Geisha's Finest stole by Tanja Osswald

Both our CAL and the GAL end on New Year's Eve so there is definitely some double dipping potential here!

 

 

 

 

Direct download: Episode_30_final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:48pm PDT

The Two Ewes continue to shine a spotlight on Front Range Bags by Nancy Totten.  Nancy has generously offered a project bag from her shop to a lucky Two Ewes listener.  Kelly has one of her bags in SF Giants fabric and it's great!  High quality, nice and roomy, and lots of handy features. It was the perfect bag for the Crackerjack Cowl project during baseball season. To enter, take a look in the Front Range Bags shop and report back to the contest thread in the Ravelry group.  Tell us which bag you like best (exclusive of the custom orders) and let us know about your favorite features in the project bags you use. A winner will randomly selected during our podcast episode 30.  Thank you Nancy!  We appreciate the opportunity to spotlight your bags and your shop!

This week Marsha and Kelly record separately due to busy schedules.  Marsha has finished her Crochet-Along project, the Virus Shawl.  Marsha also finished her son's Tricolor Socks made of her handspun from last winter.  He turned 18 earlier this month so she finished the socks for his birthday.  He bought himself a birthday present that is every mother's nightmare!  A motorcycle, which he is using to transport his bicycle!

Marsha is currently working on a scarf for her brother from the Stonehedge Fiber Mill Crazy that she bought in Portland.  She is also using the yarn that she created at Yarnia in Portland.  She is making the Stripe Study Shawl by Vera Valimaki.

Kelly has no finished projects and very little knit or crochet progress. The one project that got some time was the crochet hippo that she is making for our Crochet-Along.  She has been doing lots of fiber work, though.  She is spinning Wensleydale for her Aunt's vest.  She is finally able to spin on the Salish Spinner and has been using it to spin a bulky yarn from the CVM fleece.  She is also carding a very old, gray fleece of medium weight from a sheep named Charlotte.  All of this fiber activity is a result of cleaning up and organizing her large fleece stash.  

At the end of the episode we talk BOOKS!  Marsha reviews three books that she has added to her fiber reference library.  The Fleece and Fiber Sourcebook and the Field Guide to Fleece, both by Carol Ekarius and Deborah Robson and Hand Dyeing Yarn and Fleece by Gail Callahan.

Kelly reviews a book that was generously sent to her by Interweave/F+W. 
Simple Woven Garments: 20+ Projects to Weave & Wear (Interweave/F+W; $26.99; May 2015).  "This book is a pattern and idea book for creating uncomplicated woven shapes and turning them into highly wearable, everyday fashions."

Direct download: Episode_29_final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:40pm PDT