Sunday, October 26, 2008

Sundays are for Spinning and Spiders

To be honest, every day at the moment is embroidery day as I continue with my push to get my SIL's embroidery finished in time to be framed for her birthday at the end of November. The plan has only been slightly complicated by H inviting her to visit the weekend after next but I think that I'm on track. The current plan is to finish the basic cross stitch in the next few days which I think will take me another 8 hours of stitching time, then I need to put it on the big frame and go over the whole piece with metallic thread and the beads and then I need to go over it all again to put in the backstitch.

Lulla arrives 9am on a Friday morning, I've taken that day off work so there's a very real possibility that I will be up into the wee small hours on Thursday to get it finished. Then H is taking it to his parents to get it framed and they will drive it to Scotland for the party which avoids us having any hassle taking it up on the plane - phew, if that all works it'll be a miracle.

Anyway, Diane has decreed a Sunday Spin-In - the Ravelry Group is here and the chat site is here. It hasn't been very active today, at least, not whenever I dropped in, but I went with the inspiration and broke out a new braid of BFL which I bought at the IKnit day. Some of the Christmas knitting is going to involve handspun and I wanted to try a 3-ply before I started spinning that so I've divided the braid into three (pretty much along the lines that it was plaited on) and I'm going to spin each bump individually and then ply the three together. This is how it looked while it was still daylight
October 229

and from the purpley-pink on the spindle I've added grey, orange, more pink and burnt brown.

I'm spinning it by breaking the roving into relatively short strips lengthways but not dividing it at all, just pre-drafting it out and out and out with the idea being that I'll get relatively long colour repeats in the finished yarn so that it barberpoles with the other two strands and doesn't just turn into muted sludge. It certainly is beautifully easy to spin and I may have to hide it away until the embroidering is all finished. On the other hand, you can play scrabble and spin and you can't say the same for embroidery.

With Halloween coming up at the end of this week I've been doing a little cake rehearsal. I have an amazing cake tin that is supposed to imprint Jack o lantern faces on the little cakes but my efforts today only produced little chocolate cakey-bites; swiftly demolished but not really what I was aiming for, so I deviated into these:

October 231

October 234

Chocolate sponge cakes with plain icing, Milky Way Magic Stars (carefully selected for the best faces) and some black writing icing - simple but effective, particularly with the orange cases I found in my cake stash. I think we have a winner on the fairy cake front, I might try American style cookies in the baking tray and see if that helps.

The area where we live seems to have an unwritten rule that if you put a pumpkin outside then the kids are welcome to call, if not then you're off limits so we'll probably put our candle pumpkin outside early in the evening to welcome the little neighbours (who are all under 10 and very cute in fancy dress). My office is having a Halloween charity day too - £1 to be in fancy dress or £2 to wear normal clothes. As I'm going to be travelling back from a client on Friday morning I'm trying to work out a plan to concoct some sort of costume in the back of the car - I'm thinking black paper and gold sticky stars, although having said that, maybe a lawyer is scary enough without adornment.


  1. Carie, you are really amazing with your talent. I love reading your blog!

  2. We have lots of little people come but they go to bed early and all the fun is over by 8.30.

  3. Your spider cakes are wonderful, they made me giggle.

  4. Quiz question, does this "pay money to come to work" apply to everyone? Cos I was appalled when Steve's place had one and it turned out that in order to go to work, Steve had to pay them about 5 minutes of his take-home pay and the big bosses had to pay about 30 seconds worth of their take-home pay but the cleaners and other minimum-wage staff had to pay almost half an hour's worth of their pay (or to put it another way, someone who could afford it decided it was £2 all round).

  5. In response to Mary's quiz - it doesn't apply to our cleaners as they come in the wee small hours and are not directly employed by us anway. If anyone has a particular reason (broke, don't like the charity etc) to opt out all together then they can and no-one ever pushes for the costume money. The main way in which we raise money is by having a cake sale which is always popular. The last time we had a cake sale I spent a whole evening making cake, only to then pay to eat it so I'm trying to hold back on my compulsive volunteer tendancies and allow someone else to do the cooking this time. I might make a batch of spider cakes for knitting though :)

  6. The spider cookies really are too cute!


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