Just got an email from a Cormo shepherdess asking me if I am the Margaret listed in the Spring issue of Spin-Off. I was elated and devastated at the same time. Elated that the issue is out and devastated that I don’t have my copy yet! I went on the Interweave web site and my article and pattern are listed – though there is some kind of funky orange shawl where the photo of the baby sweater should be. There were some great online articles, too, so I spent some time reading up on wraps per inch and twist in plying and discovered another cool blog to read in my spare time.
The spare time issue is getting more and more dire as I get myself involved in writing more designs/books and studying for my latest venture. Today I went to check out an historical site and was invited to become part of the team who give demos to the public. I am studying the scripts for the spinning, weaving, medicinal gardening, dye gardening, candle-making, and maybe some food preservation (though I no longer cook, so I may give that one a pass). The William Harris Homestead is only 7 minutes (yes, I clocked it this morning) from my house, so it is a great commute! While I was there today, they said they were having difficulty with one of the spinning wheels, so I took a look at it. A bit of fiddling and an assessment of “not being used enough” got it going again. I brought it home with me to give it some oil and spin on it to loosen it up a bit. Actually, I think it was lonely sitting in a corner and already seems to have perked up in my studio where it is surrounded by fiber and my own two spinning wheels.
Check out the William Harris Homestead web pages (www.harrishomestead.com) and see what you think. Today I tagged along with a group of fourth graders and we saw: arrowheads from the grounds left by the Creek Indians who used to live on that land; how far the well was from the house for getting water; the lands of the property along the river from a hayride; the garden used for medicines; how to preserve food; the smokehouse; how to make candles; naturally dyed wool hanging on the line; how Civil War soldiers dressed and walked into battle and the machinations they had to go through to load their muskets; and, a working Border Collie putting the sheep through their paces. Oh, and all the kids got to pick cotton from the teeny-tiny cotton patch. It was a full day expertly placed into two hours.
Thank you, thank you, thank you, Charlene, for the comments on the cast on vs. the first row. The more people who can give insight into these ideas/techniques, the better we will all be able to perform our wonderful knitting.