Thursday, May 29, 2008

Still here

Still here, still knitting.

That's a Queen Anne's lace shawl I'm knitting on the train from Munich to Rothenburg ob der Tauber (cute town, very touristy).

I'll post more once I get home from vacation. The Blogger interface is a nightmare on my internet tablet.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Spring/summer fun

Medieval festival season has officially started for me with the early May festival at Freienfels. I snapped a few photos of stuff I saw. I had a pretty good time and saw several historically accurate fabric stands with nice stuff, but I had to travel light, so not much browsing occurred.
I also saw some handmade drop-spindle vendors, as well as fleece and yarn boots selling fibers that were dyed using historical techniques and materials. Nice stuff, but again, I had to travel light because my husband and I were carting around sleeping bags and a tent on the train, and I have to make a concerted effort to reduce the stash.

The festival took place in a field near an old castle. We took the rocky winding path up to the castle and saw some dancers. What a hike! No one in their right mind would attack that place. Or maybe they would have to be much tougher than me!
Ignore the smudgy ghosts, there is a law here about not photographing children and I only just noticed they were in the way. Parents take note: don't bring your children to places where people will be taking a lot of pictures. Just leave them at home please! Thank you.

There were also jousting competitions...
It ended pretty quickly because one guy got hit so hard he went flying off his horse. It's still a
dangerous hobby and it's better to be safe than sorry.
I also saw some gorgeous garments, and while they are not quite historically accurate, they were simply stunning. One badly photographed example...
Stupid long exposure time! I saw her go by and snapped, but I had my camera settings ready for a different shot. The basic idea: a calf length coat with princess seams made of crushed (!) velvet. It has a liripipe (read: long and pointy) hood that goes to the waist lined in a contrast color crushed velvet. There is a tightening string/ribbon which thread through loops sewn to the back princess seams and the string/ribbon is the same color as the hood lining. I haven't seen the front so I have no idea how it fastens. Probably buttons to the hip, I figure. Gorgeous! And it pointy bell-shaped sleeves.

My outfit: not so stunning but very warm.
It was quite cold with the nights dipping down to 5 or 6 degrees (Celsius). The wool cloak was good for keeping warm while walking around and it made an EXCELLENT extra blanket to throw over the sleeping bags. That's what people did with them in the middle ages, and it works incredibly well for it. It also made me appreciate how warm wool really is. For something like this, accept no substitutes!

I recently finished a sweater that I'll post about soon, and I've been working more on Imogen recently, to minimize the sweater-quantities-of-aran-wool portion of the stash.
So far I've finished the back and one sleeve, using Lorna's Laces Bullfrogs and Butterflies. This yarn is a luxury to knit with, a fuzzy (i.e. contains mohair) single ply that just glides on the needles. To avoid pooling I swap balls every 2 rows. And the lengths of some of the colors is not the same in every hank, so this minimizes the differences between hanks when knitted up. It looks very long and narrow, so I am hoping that I have enough yarn, and it will get shorter and wider when blocked!