Monday, January 10, 2011

My 100th Ravelry Project ~ An online collaboration in 12 easy steps

First let me say the online knitting community is just so much fun. You get to know knitters and fiber artists from all over the world, learn new techniques, be inspired by their creativity, and LOL at the pictures they take of themselves in front of the bathroom mirror in their jammies and new hat.

One of my favorite projects of 2010 was one I created with the help of designers, dyers and spinners from all over the place.

It started with this 111 State sweater that my daughter found in a thrift shop in Chicago. Not a name brand, but the 100% wool was merino soft.

But yikes, when I unraveled it, the yarn was a a thready mess.

You can knit with thready messes like this; you just have to be careful not to split the stitches. It was such nice yarn though, I wanted to see if it could be improved. I posted a notice on the PhatFiber contributors Yahoo group and asked for pricing to re-ply all 1,200 yards.  Several wheel spinners from across the country offered, but Roo's offer from Moonwood Farm was the best. "Let's barter" she said, "Surprise me with some yarn from your shop."  What a sweetheart!

I sent her a hank of 100% camel and some other wools along with the thready mess and a few weeks later, voila! . . .  I get this beautiful stuff back! (Along with a sweater for unraveling that she happened to have lying around, and some wool wash and rinse. Just love Roo's free-wheeling generous spirit!)

At my request, Roo spun some blues and greens into some of the white wool. She said she used a braid of roving called "Ice Queen" from Erin (of Vines) which was part of the very first Phat Fiber Sample box. It's a 100% rambouillet (which is a French merino). Roo added sparkle (undyed firestar) because she said Ice Queen deserved some icy sparkle. I agree!

From these yarns, I made myself this Ripley hat (my daughter modeling, thank you Beth) and am still working on the scarf to go with it.

The online knitting community is full of people who bend over backward to help their fellow fibery friends. It's fun seeing that....and the lovely golden thread running through it--people sharing and creating from their own little corner of the world.   

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