Still here!

Hi everybody, it’s been a while!

As some of you know, I haven’t been well these past months. But I’m still spinning, knitting, crocheting, dyeing, and weaving. I just haven’t had enough energy to also write.

Anyway, Wovember has started well for my part. I’m spinning the Premium Coloured Shetland fleece I bought last year at Shetland Flock Book. It’ll be a very thin 2-ply lace yarn (41 wpi/singles, will bloom when washed). I carded the fleece after first testing to comb. Combing took away at least 50% of the fleece, so I decided to drum card. A true worsted yarn would be better for lace, but you can’t always get your way with things! I use a worsted draw, though, so it’s a semi-something yarn. I scoured the fleece last year, and left most of the lanolin in it so I wouldn’t have to oil the fleece for carding or combing.

I’ve also spun quite a lot on spindles during the summer. These small skeins are the latest, all also plied on spindles. If you don’t already chain ply on top whorl spindles, watch Chewiedox’ instruction video. Easy! And fun.

The skeins: Swedish Finewool and Jaalanlammas, Swedish Finewool, black Campanica.

Isn’t that spindle beautiful? It’s from Forsnäs Hemman in the Swedish Lapland. The wood is rowan, one of my favourite trees.

I have given up teaching, but I do have two pupils who are studying for there apprenticeship in our local guild. Sometimes we just meet to have fun, like in October when we dyed wool and wool tops. These tops are ready for the steam cooker:

I also knitted a sheep. It’s my new travel companion, as I gave my travel teddy bear to my grandchild. The pattern is from Rostock Keramik/Lena Bergsman, only in Swedish I think: Fåret Ullrik. I used handspun yarns for the sheep, and acid dyed/handspun yarns for the clothes.

I crocheted a blanket for a family member. It’s a Christmas present, so I won’t tell you who’ll get it.

Hubby has been busy too. In August our barn looked like this:

Now he’s almost finished, re-using the planks and boards from the parts that had to go. Some red paint will change it completely, but I really like how it looks now.

And Kasper? He’s fine, only tired like old dogs often are. He doesn’t want to go on long walks every day. He was happy for the snow we had a couple of weeks ago, and not so happy when it melted the next day.

The sun doesn’t rise high now in November, so when it sometimes gets to shine a bit the effects are dramatic and very good for your spirit. 8:30 in the morning:

It was a good year for the rowans, of which we have plenty here. All those berries made it possible for some of the migratory birds stay here until a couple of days ago. Now they have eaten almost everything, and moved south.

Indoors the old Amaryllis is blooming after having spent the summer outdoors.


  1. Marilyn F.

    Goodmorning Barbro . . . So nice to hear from you and see all your projects. I like your decision to not comb the Shetland fleece to keep most of the wool. Its a beautiful yarn. Chain plying on a spindle? Wow, I will have to watch that, sounds cool. Gorgeous wood in spindle from Lapland. And your new travel companion is very cute. You even made a lace scarf for him/her. All the bright colors you use in your knitting – a person would be easily found in the snow if they got lost. Beautiful granny square blanket. Your barn is coming along nicely too – and yes, the old planks on the outside make for interesting color and pattern – a coats of paint will help to preserve the old wood – but will lose the current hues. Wonder if a coat of clear shelac would work as well as paint? Hmmm. Amarylis are such beauties – we have them here during the holidays. Hope your health continues to improve. Thanks for sharing your projects and flowers . . .

    • Barbro Heikinmatti

      Thank you! About the paint: our barn is painted with earthcolour. It can’t be painted with another type of paint with a good result, the paint would fall off pretty soon. Also, earthcolour is a sustainable paint that we also have on the house and the other barn. It’s a traditional paint in Sweden and Finland. Red houses and barns with white details can be seen everywhere, especially in rural areas.

  2. Rebecca

    Good to hear your voice. I am sorry to hear you’ve been unwell. I understand that state of being well enough to craft but not quite to share/write about it. Glad you are making.

    • Barbro Heikinmatti

      Hi TextileRanger! So nice of you to think of me! I’m alive… but not always in good condition. I became seriously ill two years ago. I’ve cut down on a lot of things, including blogging. But I still spin, knit, weave, nalbind, crochet etc. Maybe I should write a thank you and farewell post.

      • TextileRanger

        I’m sorry you are ill, but glad you have all your talents to keep you company!
        I haven’t made it to your part of the world yet, but I have always kept it in my mind as somewhere I would like to go, based mostly on your great posts about local museums and crafts! I follow over 400 blogs and I don’t check in with them regularly, but yours is one that stands out to me.
        Take good care of yourself!


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