Monday, November 14, 2011

Knitting up Rhinebeck 2010: Steam Valley Fiber Silk Yarn

I finally made an attempt to "organize" my Rhinebeck yarns this summer. This attempt consisted of purchasing two large clear plastic bins, and then filling each bin with yarn. Success! 
In the course of this effort, I came across this super beautiful yarn from Steam Valley Fiber, of which I purchased a single skein. The name of the color is Tidepool, but the shifting shining colors are more like a mature male peacock in the sun. The hand is lovely soft and strokeable, owing to the combo of 50% silk and 50% superfine Merino. The price was $40, explaining why I only bought one skein. Happily it is 270 yards, so I thought "Hurrah! Enough for an actual 1-skein project!"
Blue Lace Scarf
With no elasticity to speak of, the yarn cried out to become a luscious scarf...hat or gloves would have been problematic, you see. And so because I really enjoyed the Enchanting lace pattern with a similar yarn, I decided to make another Moebius scarf. Except that I didn't quite calculate the width correctly first time, and feared having too short of a non-stretchy bit of lace. So I frogged and cast on only 3 repeats of the lace, really the bare minimum, and have ended up with a nice long scarf that is taking bloody forever to finish. Really, 270 yards has taken me from August to November to finish, even with carrying the project everywhere I go. Granted I only work on it during long bus trips when I have sufficient elbow room, or during boring board meetings. However the end is finally in sight...and then I get to enjoy deep anxiety over washing this yarn. 

It Bloomed! Habenaria medusa BLOOMED!!

Well, I had 2 tubers sprout, but 1 conked out before it could spike -- I suspect overwatering.

However, the bigger healthier one went on to strut its stuff.

Naturally, the first flowers opened just before we left for a 4-day vacation! But when we returned, the plant and flowers had survived their time in the heat and dark (July, no a/c and no lights on while we're away). They all lasted about 10 days each. All of them opened. I am very thrilled indeed.

And now I am watching both empty little pots anxiously, dribbling water on their empty surfaces in hopes of maintaining the tubers til next year. Habenaria rhodochilia is still in leaf and will soon join them.