This shawl has been in the planning stage for weeks, now. The reason it took so long to get going is that I was a sampling maniac with it because I had never knitted lace before and I had never spun lace before.

Hand-spun Shawl:
hand-spun shawl

The Pattern: Optic Waves Shawl from the Knitter’s Book of Yarn (Ravelry Link)
The fiber: Cosyspins hand-painted Falklands wool (Lynx colorway) spun on my spindle

I am spinning as I knit which is a great method of working for me because I become impatient and this way I get to change things up by splitting my time up between both crafts. I began with a 4 oz. braid of falkland wool. I start at one end of the braid and work my way to the end by pulling off short chunks:
spindle and wool

I draft out those fibers as softly and evenly as I can and it fluffs up quite a lot:
drafted wool and spindle

I wind the wool into a nest around the wool bracelet for easy storage while spinning:
drafted fiber

I have a bit of an obsession with keeping the color changes in the spinning fiber intact in the final yarn, and as I am working with small amounts of the wool at a time, I take care to always know which end goes where. The yarn that is spun onto the spindle first will be the end I attach to the working yarn on the knitting needles. So, when the spindle is full, I will wind the yarn into a center-pull ball on an empty toilet paper roll. The first yarn spun onto the spindle is now the yarn on the outside of the ball and I attach that end to the knitting yarn. If I have left enough twist in the yarn I can just draft out each end and let the twist enter that area and it becomes joined. If not, I can always felt the ends together.

Shawl with spindle:
shawl and spindle

Another summer clothing project are these short socks:
short socks

Pattern: Super Simple Short Sock by Meghann Holcomb (Ravelry Link to pattern)
Yarn: Estelle Arequipa (65% Superwash wool, 20% Alpaca and 15% Nylon)
Needles: 3.0 mm bamboo dpns

These were a lot of fun and a quick knit that I am excited to wear when summer finally arrives. I didn’t actually follow the pattern (or maybe I did – I don’t know because I never read it). I found the pattern free pattern on Ravelry and just made it up as I went along based on the pictures. My hope is to get another pair of shorties out of this ball of yarn. I may try a toe-up pattern this time.

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