Wednesday, July 21, 2010

First Navajo plied yarn!

I finished spinning the fiber I got for my birthday! Here is a picture of it before I plied it:

And a picture of the finished yarn, Navajo plied:

I'm still a novice at that type of plying so there are a few crazy spots, but I'm still pretty happy with the yarn. Practice makes perfect! And the most amazing part is that when I finished plying it, it hung in a perfectly open loop. That never happened before I took the plying class. I used to have to put weights on the fiber when it was drying to show that yarn who was boss. This is so much better!

Monday, July 19, 2010

I love the 80's!

My 27th birthday was on Friday! And so was the Midwest Folk Art and Fiber Fair! I went out there to check out the vendors and to take a class on plying.

As I was wandering around the fair with my spinning wheel made out of PVC pipe people kept asking me if it was my first wheel and if I was new to spinning. I like my wheel and have never had any problems with it. I forgot that it's sort of ghetto and a lot of people look down on them. So I felt a little self-conscious when I pulled it out in the class. Everyone else had fancy wooden wheels. But once the class got underway it became apparent that your wheel doesn't matter. I was the star student! The teacher kept holding up my yarn to show everyone how it was hanging in a perfectly open loop, meaning that it was a balanced yarn. She said "It's always the quiet ones in the corner". She seemed amazed that I picked up Navajo plying so quickly and asked me after class how long I had been spinning. Here are the samples I made in class:

The first is two colors plied regularly. It was just to practice the new spinning technique she showed us (two treadles per draft). The second was plied by winding the yarn onto a ballwinder and then plying with the two ends. It's a good method for when you don't have much yarn and you want to ply without wasting any. The last three are Navajo plied, in the order that I did them. At first I got a jumbled mess but I figured it out by the end of the first skein. I did the other two to get a little more practice in before I used it on this amazing fiber I bought at the fair! It is about 4 oz. of BFL (75%) and Silk (25%). Not vegan, I know. But so beautiful and soft! I bought it from Wolf Creek Wools. They were my favorite vendor there. I was really impressed with their color combinations. This one is called Fire. It looks a little pink in the picture but its really red, orange, yellow and purple. I started spinning it up today.

The next day was 80's night! I dressed up and went out all 80's-fabulous all day.

I met up with Emily at her house around seven.

From there we went to Diedrich's Captain's Inc. in Pecatonica. Here is the whole crew:

(Megan and her boyfriend Brad, Me, Amanda, Emily and Kyle with Tim and Nathaniel in the back.)

There was supposed to be a prize for the best dressed but since we were the only ones really dressed up, we all got $20. Woo! I think we deserved it anyway, we did look pretty amazing!

I don't normally drink but in honor of my birthday and 80's night I had a few. They had 80's-inspired drinks like "MC Hammered" and "Weekend at Bernie's" as well as Rainbow Brite Jell-o shots. I had Sex on the Beach (the drink!), a few "Weekend at Bernie's"s and half of a Jell-o shot (that was a first for me - too boozy!). Megan, who works there, bought me a shot of some fruity thing and RedBull for my birthday. I spread it all out over 6 hours and it took me two hours to drink my first drink but I still got a little tipsy. Scandalous, I know!

We were practically the only ones in the bar so dancing and loud singing soon overcame us!

Kyle tried to sneak a peek under Emily's skirt...

And fake fighting broke out!

For some reason people started wearing sunglasses, even though it was one in the morning...

Myself included. It made sense at the time.

It was a fun and fabulous way to spend a birthday!

Monday, July 12, 2010

FABULOUS night out!

Last night I got together a group of 11 people and we went to a show at the Baton in Chicago. It is the home of the most professional and glamorous female impersonators in the world! We met up at Maggiano's down the street.

After a drink bill of $209 we forgot to get a group picture. This is what we ended up with:

Next time there will be more pictures from the fabulous night!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Fourth of July Madness!

Normally I don't do anything for the Fourth of July but this year I was invited out to Winnebago to spend the holiday with my favorite group of people. What follows is photo-documentation of the madness that ensued. It is not for the faint of heart.

Here is most of the crew sitting outside in the nasty humidity:

Emily and I looked fanTABulous, as usual!

After that we headed over to the carnival for some karaoke alfresco! We started off with Mama Mia:

And then It's the End of the World as We Know It!

Then we decided to do a song in Spanish, just for a little something different. I used to know the song and Emily had heard it before and her friend is a Spanish major so we thought with all that we could pull it off. It was a little harder than we thought. The only part we really knew was "bidi bidi bom bom!".

On our way back to the house Emily had to get a corn!

Back home jello shots ensued...

Best friends were made...

And love reigned supreme!

Emily won the paleness contest...

There was a Sarah Sandwich...

And Nathaniel fell down.

All in all, a success!

Friday, June 18, 2010

In Progress

This is how I spent the last six hours:

The smell of oil paint = pure happiness :) But I could definitely use some ventilation now.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Thrifting and Crafting!

Right before Milk Days my parents and I went to the antique store in Walworth. I found this awesome planter I just couldn't live without:

At that same store I also got some old photographs. I'm going to use them in a crafty project (coming soon!).

A few weeks ago, I found this super chicken at the Goodwill in Delavan.

And last night I made this beautiful flower pin from this website.

It was a little bit of a pain to make, but I think the next ones will be easier. I gave this one to my mom and I can't wait to have one of my own! I may just make one for everyone I know, so watch out!

Milk Days 2010!

This past weekend was Milk Days, Illinois's longest running festival. I've been going for the past 20 years and if you've never been, you're missing out! It's held the first weekend in June (Friday-Sunday). This year I did the abbreviated version and only celebrated on Saturday, but my-oh-my! was it a full day!

I kicked it off by running the 10k at 8am (keep in mind I haven't run at ALL this summer). I definitely didn't win any awards, but the girls did. They ran in the kids' 50m dash. Isabelle won 2nd place...

And Olivia won 3rd!

After that it was time to eat! I had pasta salad, all sorts of fruits and veggies and crackers. Yum!

My dad kicked back with a Guinness after doing the 10k.

Then it was time for the parade.

Isabelle met Batman and a really tall guy.

They scored lots of candy!

They even shared some with me.

After that we watched a movie (I fell asleep) and then it was time for the nightlife!

It started off pretty slowly, but once the karaoke started it got AWESOME!

And Emily and I looked pretty fabulous!

There was lots of beer...

And dancing...

Even with random drunk strangers...

After hitting up every bar in town, 2 a.m. rolled around and it was time to wrap things up. Nathaniel crushed cans in his sadness that Milk Days was coming to an end.

But don't worry, there's always next year!