Finding creative ways to keep busy and use things we have around the house.

spinning sample along

After months of neglect, my spinning wheel was displaying a thick coating of dust. Every day I looked at it and thought that I should spin, but without a specific project in mind other than an overflowing bin of spinning fiber, I wasn’t sure how to return to regular practice.

I was delighted to discover that Jillian Moreno planned to host a low-key sample along. What a wonderful way to ease back into the practice of regular spinning. Over the course of the sample along, I also hope to take my spinning out of the predictable yarn I’ve been making and create something different.

I decided to spin this beautiful braid of Anzula Superfine Merino in the colorway Earth. I’d picked it up a few years ago with the intent to design a project with it, mixing it with Squishy. That’s still the eventual plan! Samples are how spinners swatch.

Why am I posting here and not at little acorn creations? This part of the process feels right to talk about here. Once I start analyzing the samples and turning them into swatches, then I’ll write about this project there.

Anzula Braid

getting ready

Of course, it was quickly apparent that I’ve become more accustomed of late to writing instructions instead of following what someone else has written.

One evening, I read through week one, getting ready.

The following day, without reviewing the instructions, I photographed the fiber. Then I prepared it, based on my memory. What did I do? I split it into quarters horizontally, not vertically. While I will be working through Jillian’s different types of playing with color the effect of different methods won’t be as apparent in my samples. That’s ok. My primary goal for this sample along is to return to regular spinning.

first sample, as it comes

Earlier this week I began to spin the first sample, As it Comes.

It felt good to sit at the wheel and spin. Fifteen minutes doing something other than sitting at my desk didn’t cause the world to turn inside out (it’s doing that all on its own). Hopefully I’ll be able to keep practicing this renewed habit.

updating my CMYK watercolour dots

A few weeks ago I bought a hand mulled watercolour dot card from Wanderlust Watercolours. I love dot cards because they let me try different paints without investing in an entire half pan (or more).

Wanderlust Watercolour dot card & sample paint swatch on a very messy desk.

Unfortunately I haven’t done much painting or sketching lately. I wanted to find a way to make this sample one I would take out and use … and get back to experimenting. A few weeks ago, I changed what is in my EDC (every day carry) mini palette. That’s helped, but I needed a spark of something completely different. This set fills that need.

I have empty half pans however I wanted something tiny. There are companies that offer slim watercolour palettes, but I wanted something now. So I went to the store and bought an eyeshadow set with the plan to replace the makeup (since I don’t wear it anyway) with my paints. Ok, I only finally bought it this evening but I do think it’ll work out. Let’s take a tour of what I did.

wanderlust watercolour dot card and eyeshadow palette

Ready (Prepare)

First I pried out the makeup. Don’t worry — I’m keeping all but the pinkest shade and experimenting further.

emptied eyeshadow palette

Then I washed it well in warm water. I didn’t bother drying it too much. I tried to pry the inner tray out, but it’s well affixed. You can see that some of the eyeshadow pushed through to the case. That’s ok.

cleaned eyeshadow case ready for pigment transfer.

Set (Transfer)

These paints experienced the same gross humid NYC weather as I have so they weren’t too thrilled about being pulled off the card. I persevered and got everything into its new spot. The two larger spaces are for mixing.

watercolours transferred from the dot card to the new case

Then I wet them down well, this will help them get sticky in their new home. I went a bit overboard with the hansa yellow light, but that’s ok.


New CMYK dot palette

This CMYK collection consists of

  • C – cobalt turquoise light – pb28
  • M – quinacridone magenta – pr122
  • Y – hansa yellow light – py3
  • K – mars black – pbk11

and while it’s currently sold out at Wanderlust Watercolours, please let Kata know if you are seriously interested. While I can’t promise she’ll make more, she might. I highly suggest signing up for her newsletter and following @wanderlustwc on instagram.

Here are some quick scribbles as I didn’t feel like going to get my favourite water brush. I look forward to making a proper chart of these colours tomorrow and getting back to painting and sketching.

CMYK scribbles