Supporting the local economy



My mom and I are in beautiful Eugene, Oregon, to see the Black Sheep Gathering. It's a lovely event, not too big but not the least bit small, either. It was really hard to leave for the day, but most likely a good idea that we did. There were more than a few fantastically beautiful spindles calling my name, and trying the Louet Julia is going to haunt my spinning fantasies for a while. I should curse Wooland Woolworks for having so many wheels out for test driving. Evil temptresses, every last one of them. But they were so nice, I can't be mad.

The sheep and goats (Parenthetically, I have a hard time distinguishing certain breeds of sheep from goats and am not diligent enough to actually read the tags describing each animal. So if I call something a goat and it's actually a sheep, that's just my own flakiness.) were endearing though I was a bit started to realize how much like Babe, the male sheep were. Yowza! No, I didn't snap any proof, you big sicko.

Anyway, a cute sheep in a coat, makes googoo eyes at me.


And two little goats snuggle up for a nap.


A few more cutie pies over on flickr, if that's not enough.

And if you want still more livestock, here's a little movie I put together to give you a feel for how loud those goats can be.

I swear, some of them sounded like sarcastic older men trying to mimic the sound of goats. It makes me laugh. I'm easily amused.

I also got myself some damn fine roving. I'm so in love with this haul.

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And my mom treated me to a gorgeous new, hand blown, glass orifice hook.


For those unfamiliar with the purpose of an orifice hook, I promise, it's not at all what you are imagining.

And of course, my mom got a few nice things too.


All in all, a really fun day.

More gratuitous dog shots


I know, big surprise.

A few of you have asked if Thea ever gets to catch the squirrel. Well, if Panda's playing along, generally not, but if it's just Thea, heck ya!

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Here she is having a little bit of fun while we take a break from mowing the back yard. She doesn't have the muzzle-eye coordination her sister has, but she has tenacity to spare. Even in the blaring heat she would have gladly played all afternoon. She's happiest when she's playing.

Panda, on the other hand, is my patient and reserved girl.


Here she shows off some of my fresh picked flowers from the garden. It's nice having a pup who'll stay still and not chew the scenery (literally).

If you were to look at my Ravelry notebook, you'd notice a lot of projects that are super top secret. (If I showed them to you, I'd have to kill you, and nobody wants that.)

Sadly enough, this doesn't even represent the full list of unbloggables. Two are to come (awaiting yarn) and one two-part pattern isn't represented (didn't get a good swatch shot before I sent it off.)

So, that means I've been very busy and haven't much to show for it around here.
But, in the next month and a half, or so, I expect to have a new self published pattern for you, which will reveal the whole behind these two little pieces.

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And, the premier issue of Twist Collective will be out with this bad boy.


The rest will come in its due time. So funny too, I had this grand idea that I'd work on all self published stuff this year. How silly I am. I have been trying to do more of my own designs, but the opportunities that have arisen, to work on other projects, have just been too good to pass up. In the end, I think it's all worked out for the best.

That said, with several patterns being tech edited right now, and other patterns due very soon, I've been so entrenched in numbers and details that I needed to give myself a little break yesterday.

That's when El Matchador, some Spunky Eclectic merino and I, had ourselves a luxurious few hours while watching Deadwood on DVD.


These are the singles spun not-too-tightly, using a supported long draw method. I plan to ply it pretty tightly once I've spun the 4 ounces I have. I think this will retain the softness without being too prone to pilling. The colorway is called Sage and it's an amazing mix of greens and browns, ranging from deep leafy green to red and yellow ocher. The picture really doesn't show the color well. You'll just have to take my word for it.

I'm eager to finish spinning up the remaining fiber, yet also feeling mentally refreshed enough to dive back into my deadline work.

In unrelated news, my parents arrive on Wednesday when we will belatedly celebrate Father's Day with my now-legitimate-no-longer-step father. Huzzah! And to add to the fun, my mom and I will be at the Black Sheep Gathering in Eugene on Friday and, maybe, Saturday. If you'll be there too, please say "hi." I have a feeling my wallet will be substantially lighter after leaving the event.

Cheeky Monkey


Do you notice a trend here?

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See tons more pictures from our day trip to Manzanita, OR, here.

Oh and if you've ever wondered what it's like to hang out with the pups at the beach, you can check out this short video.

And I realize I really should have faded the music after the closing credit. Sorry for how jarringly the music stops at the end.

Most pictures may be clicked to enlarge.

This is the last in a 3-part tutorial covering this spreadsheet, and one of several tutorials on using Excel for designing. There are two previous tutorials in this particular series that combined, give you all the info you need to understand the various fields in the spreadsheet. And that spreadsheet? It's got the raw numbers needed to make this little shell.

NOTE: The attached spreadsheet is just a sample and contains measurements that may be useful but which may not meet the standards for some publications. You are welcome to use what I have for your own design purposes but it'll be you who has to ultimately support any patterns written from it, so do your research first.

Special notes:
I've used Ysolda's measurement chart as a reference for many of the basic sloper measurements.
I'm using Amy O'Neill Houck's tutorial on estimating yardage to create my yardage estimation formulas.

The goal

In the two previous tutorials, we learned about

  • Rounding
    • Round to a whole number
    • Round to the nearest Even or Odd number or Round, Round Up or Round Down
    • Round to a multiple
    • Round to a multiple plus
  • Intro to IF statements
  • Evenly spacing shaping
    • Every X rows Y times
    • Next and every X rows Y times

In this tutorial, we'll cover

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