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FibreShare 3!

Hey everyone!

I’m here checking in and to update you all on my third round of FibreShare :).

Also, I had a baby. He’s real cute.

Dez

 

Sending to Jessica in Phoenix

Putting together Jessica’s package was a ton of fun! She loves bright colors, fingering weight yarn, loves coffee, Halloween, journaling, has a million house plants, 2 daughters and some furry critters!

I got her some treats – coffee (unground so she could decide how to grind it and because Scottie was throwing a tantrum about not wanting to use the coffee grinder at the store) and Halloween snacks. And an adorable Dia de los Muertos skull and skeleton coffee mug.

I found a journal with succulents on the cover and little sticky notes with succulents on them too.

I sent one of the project bags I made, which turned out to be her signature color (!) and added some progress keepers (unpictured because they’re inside the bag pocket and I’m stupid).

And I sort of went nuts on the yarn. Since I don’t have much of a stash myself since I prefer to buy for a project in mind, nor do I dye superwash yarn (which is Jessica’s preference to knit with!), I got to yarn shop in earnest.

Blue Moon Fiber Arts – BFL Fingering Superwash in “It’s my party & I’ll dye what I want to”

Hedgehog Fibers – HF Sock in “Bubble” (maybe, I didn’t write it down, oops)

Old Rusted Chair – Sock Set in “Boom Boom” & “Bijou”

Qing Fibre – Donegal Tweed in I have literally no clue, again, oops

Casual Fashion Queen – Mohair Sock in “Haus Summer”

I’d add more detail, but my brain fell out because babies don’t let you sleep.

Receiving from Allison

Let me tell you something about Allison – she works fast! I received her package a full month before it was due to send, and it was such a pleasant surprise. She really took my preferences to heart, which was much appreciated!

She sent the most delicious tea – David’s Tea Blueberry Jam. It’s gone. I snarfed it. And I drank it exclusively out of the amazing David’s Tea mug she sent with its own strainer and measuring spoon with a knit pattern on it. Plus it’s huge which is my favorite size!

She included 2 patterns with the yarn to complete them if I want. And I do. It’s perfect. Yarn without a plan gives me anxiety, and I’m so looking forward to getting the time to make these. The first is the Houndstooth Slouch by Grace Akhram with two skeins of Brooklyn Tweed Loft in Hayloft & Fossil. I have had this in my Ravelry queue before, which is hilarious. The second pattern is the Speedy Selbu Mittens by Skeindeer Knits with two skeins of Green Mountain Spinnery Weekend Wool in Natural Gray and Blue Jay. I can’t wait to make these because I know how fast aran weight mittens will go! Also I’ve never made myself mittens before, so it’s kind of a treat!

There’s a sample of Lana from Green Mountain Spinnery which I think I’ll add to a pair of socks at the cuff or something for embellishment since it’s just a little sample. It’s a really gorgeous dark blue called “Noche”.

And lastly, Allison included a skein of Tigger Targhee from Blue Moon Fiber Arts in “See scum, sea scum run”. It’s a super high twist, non-nylon, non-superwash sock yarn and I’m puuuuuuumped to make socks from this. So pumped.

Okay that about covers it! Obviously I highly recommend FibreShare, so go follow them to find out when the next one is in 2019!

<3 Larissa

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FibreShare 2: Electric Boogaloo

Hi everyone! I did a FibreShare again this round because the last time was so dang fun. You can read about my first FibreShare in a previous post. If you haven’t heard of it before, basically it’s a yarn swap that’s facilitated for a small fee. Ashley matches you (BY HAND!) with two partners: one to send yarn to and one who sends yarn to you. It’s super cool to learn a bit about your partner and be a sleuth to piece together your interpretation of the perfect gift!

This time both of my matches were domestic, which was nice shipping cost-wise!

Sending to my Washington friend

I learned my partner Karissa likes natural fibers, enjoys a cuppa coffee, the coast, eats Paleo (holla!), and hopes to make her first pair of socks. I think I did pretty alright! Although, check out some of the featured packages on the FibreShare Instagram. Holy crap are some of them over the top impressive!

My goal for sending things to Karissa was to include things that can only be found in Cleveland. Obviously, everything didn’t fall under this category, but the Land is well-represented here! Since she, like me, enjoys her coffee, I picked up a bag of Phoenix Coffee from their Coventry location. And of course I found a cute mug for her to drink it out of!

While I was in the Coventry neighborhood, I stopped by the Cleveland Candle Company. You guys, if I could shove this candle through the screen for your own huffing pleasure, I would. I chose one of their Ohio/Cleveland scents called “Ohio Harvest” for Karissa. And I might have bought one that smells like Fruity Pebbles for myself. It’s out of this world.

I found some Hail Merry Paleo treats at my local Fresh Thyme and included those – cookie dough bites and a Meyer lemon tart (my favorite!).

I made a project bag, in which I included some stitch markers, a tape measure and collapsible scissors. Hers, I made from a shower curtain and a pillowcase with some beautiful black & gold zippers.

Now onto the yarn I included! First, there was a beautiful ball of teal yarn leftover from a crochet sweater I made. This was KnitPicks Shine Sport which is cotton and Modal. It’s sooo silky soft. Next was a supersoft skein of alpaca and silk called Babydoll from Storybook Alpacas, a local farm. It even says which alpaca the fiber comes from :). Then came a skein I bought at my LYS the Artful Yarn called “Crazy” by Stonehedge Fiber Mills. This is made from recycled leftovers from their yarn manufacturing process. And lastly, I picked up a Cleveland-themed skein of yarn in the colorway Lake Erie by Destination Yarn. This is a local indie dyer whose colorways come from inspiration from travel. I chose the base Postcard, which is a 75/25 sock yarn if she wants to use it for socks!

Speaking of socks, the last thing I included was 3 sock patterns with differing heels: Smooth Operator Socks, Fish Lips Kiss heel, and Okanogan socks.

Receiving from my Buffalo friend

I actually received my package from Tara the same day that Karissa received hers! It came from beautiful Buffalo, NY <3.

Kitty stitch markers with complimentary cat hairs on my floor.

Since Tara is from the Buffalo area, she wanted to treat me to the Buffalo experience. In this case it meant Frank’s RedHot hot sauce. Little did she know, this is my favorite hot sauce on earth, and I routinely buy it in bulk from Costco. In the same spicy vain, she gave me a jar of homemade Buffalo spice made from peppers grown in her garden! You know I’m into that hippy-gardening-eat-local thing. I put some on sweet potato fries. Died. Came back. Ate the rest of them.

Speaking of hippy gardening nonsense, she included some flower seeds – Marigolds and a butterfly attraction mix. I am on a tirade to make my yard full of little buzzy creatures, so these are for sure getting planted in the spring.

She included some rad notions like some Soak brand wool soap. This is great since I’m starting to dye yarn kind of often and want to find a good wash with lanolin to get it nice and sheepy after making fun colors. There is a row counter, which is perfect because I just make tally marks on a piece of paper and it’s a total mess. As long as my toddler doesn’t get ahold of it, I will make good use of it! I’ve already used the little 6 inch straight ruler a bunch of times for measuring gauge count and small progress like hat brims and sleeve cuffs. I’ve been using a worn out tape measure, so I’m sure this is at least marginally more accurate! She also included some little kitty stitch markers which are going for a ride at the moment on my Portage cardigan. And some ones handmade my her from her Etsy shop Scara Creations – these are little lightbulb ones with sparkle beads and the cutest witch holding a kitty. These ones have been helping me keep count during long cast ons (I’ve decided any amount over like 60 stitches needs a marker every 20 stitches or else I’m 100% miscounting).

Onto the yarn! First was a little kit with a mini ball of gradient yarn with a button and a pattern to make a wrist cuff bracelet. It looks like such a super cute fast project! She also included a shawl pattern – Clincher by Ash Kearns – if I wanted to use it for one of the other yarns she included. There were two skeins of Patons Classic Wool Worsted in Natural Mix and Pumpkin. I think I might use these for a baby blanket, but I can’t make up my mind! Next there was a skein of Sheep Loves Monkey Adventure in the colorway Silver Swords, which I want to make socks out of! I’m thinking of finding a good dark contrast heel/toe/cuff. And finally a skein from Dyed in the Wool Yarn Co. Sparkle Twisted Sock in BB Guns & Black Eyes. This is 100% going to be a shawl, it’s so sparkly and bruisey, but in a pretty way.

I love everything, holy guacamole. FibreShare is so much fun – not only because of the gifts you get to send and receive, but the friends you make in the process. My advice – figure out when the next round of FibreShare is and sign up immediately!

kthxloveyoubye

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FibreShare

Although it hasn’t been something I’ve been actively working towards, I would like to make more friends and connections through the fiber and knitting world. I’m very lucky that I stumbled across the FibreShare yarn swap on Instagram. For a small fee, you are paired with two people: one to send yarn to and one who sends yarn to you. It’s so dang exciting to get your matches. You get to peer into a new friend’s life a little to learn about what they like to make, what kinds of yarn they like to use, what environment they like to knit in, and a bit about their personal lives (if they’re so gracious to share!). You can choose your preference on whether you’d like to send to someone domestically or internationally, but I think your other preferences take precedence over shipping. Full disclosure: I chose domestic solely based on shipping costs, but both of my partners were international – and it was awesome!

Sending to My Netherlands Friend

I had a lot of fun putting together a package to send all the way to the Netherlands from Ohio! My FibreShare match loves to drink tea, bake, has cats, gardens, and most importantly is a vegan who only uses vegan yarn! That means I had almost everything in common with her. Obviously the big challenge for me was choosing yarn that was plant fiber only. This meant no wool, mohair, cashmere, silk, etc. But really, there are actually a lot of vegan fiber options that are natural fibers: cotton, hemp, linen, lyocell, soy, banana silk, nettle, etc.

All wrapped up!
The goodies!

7. A bar of chocolate from Trader Joe’s – organic and fair trade, is so smooth, but NO dairy! Score!
6. Cat toys – I sewed these up with organic cotton fabric that I used to make Scottie and Maggie’s jammies and stuffed them with cotton balls and organic catnip. Now our fluffy friends are practically pen pals.
5. Seeds for the garden – Some veggies and some flowers. I hope they grow okay in her climate :).
4. Graham cracker bunnies – I asked what kind of snacks we have in the US that she doesn’t have in the Netherlands that she wanted to try, and graham crackers were on the list. If you’ve had them, you know a common ingredient is honey, which is decidedly not vegan! However, I did manage to find some snickerdoodle-flavored gluten-free graham cracker bunnies that did not have honey in them. Oddly, the same-ish flavor of the original ones did have honey, but the gluten-free did not. Strange, but tasty!
3. Chai tea sample pack – I have several loose teas that I like to add my homemade chai spice blend to, along with some little tea bags. I think I included English Breakfast and Green Rooibos since my new friend likes to drink tea in the morning and some herbal in the afternoon. I’m obsessed with this chai spice blend.
2. Universal Yarn Cotton Supreme DK Seaspray from my LYS – I really wanted to support my local yarn shop The Artful Yarn and find something that couldn’t be found in the Netherlands. It’s a DK weight, which is bulkier than she usually knits with, but I was intrigued by the way it was dyed and how it knit up.
1. Vegan Yarn Regulus Lace – This was the one item that she was drooling over lately, and I was happy to oblige! It’s a laceweight yarn made entirely of Tencel. And I personally really loved the beautiful dark red color.

I so hope my recipient was as pleased as I was to put this together. And now that I’ve done it once, I’m definitely going to spoil my next partner even more!

Receiving from My England Friend

I was so excited when my other FibreShare partner reached out to me from across the pond in London! The anticipation was really exciting since she only knows as much about me as I wrote on the FibreShare preferences form (and of course social media stalking, which is encouraged in FibreShare <3). Despite my mailman not telling me my package was at the post office, I was so blown away when I opened my package.

Yay!

She explained to me what everything was in a typed out note. I totally don’t deserve her.

  • Hand lotion – This immediately went into my purse and I use it practically every day.
  • A coaster with my initial on it – Such a nice personal touch, though Scottie keeps hiding it in the couch cushions!
  • A postcard from London – I love this and need to put it somewhere as a keepsake.
  • Green & Blacks orange and almond chocolate bar – This was so tasty! And Scottie definitely took a giant hunk of it as a morning snack one day.
  • Gleener – I was so excited to get this to remove pills from my knitwear and other clothing!
  • Handmade project bag – She made this with special fabrics she had bought in India and Japan.
  • Blacker Yarns Mohair Blends 4-Ply – This was on my list of yarns to try this year – she did her homework!
  • Cotswold 4-Ply – This is the deep magenta yarn. I’m really excited to incorporate this into a project as a pop of color!
  • Stylecraft Ethical Twist – This is the deep blue skein. It’ll be perfect to incorporate into a sweater that I need several colors of DK weigh yarn.
  • Gotland handspun (!) – This one is the big light gray skein. I feel so special to receive a handspun gift, and I can’t wait to choose a project to honor the work that went into it.

There was a tiny snafu during shipping. If I may direct your attention to the photos below, it would appear that a critter of sorts chewed all the way through the box, HANDMADE BAG UGH, and wrappings to get to the bar of chocolate. I just snapped of the affected parts of the chocolate bar and kept the rest, but of course, OMG HOW COULD YOU, CRITTER?! It gnawed a giant hole in the project bag. I have plans to sew a patch on it, but I am a total novice at sewing, so we’ll see how it goes. It even ate through the goddamn zipper, I mean really.

Chomp
Box >bag > chocolate snack

So silly. But the yarn is okay. And now I have a story – a cautionary tale of treats flying across the Atlantic.

Anywho, if this sounds like fun to you, DO IT! I can’t recommend it highly enough. <3