Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Things you should not do...

* go to work when it's a holiday in your home country, while the stupid country you live in does not think so
* slide on the stairs and partially break a vertebra
* try to stop your sliding with your foot, because you could break a toe
* stop breathing


I just came back from one week of hospital, a bit shorter than before and with back aches when I do the wrong movements. Thank you very much. I am afraid, it will take a while to heal. Knitting is fine, but I don't know about spinning yet, and carding probably won't be so good. I have some other things to do, though, like designing new business cards, writing some blog posts, especially that one on the pumpkin soup, sewing a baby quilt for my little niece-to-be and knitting Julekuler and of corse do some home office. *sigh*

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Settling down

After a few years of unrest (I'd like to call it "finding myself" ;-)) I have come to tearms with the fact, that a woman needs a proper job with some proper money if she wants to induldge in luxuries (like having some sushi on a regular basis...). So I decided to leave London, move back to my mom's and search for a job.

Well, I can say that I have achieved most of my goals (still haven't won the lottery though...). I found a boyfriend( :-) ), found a job ( :-) ) and found a beautiful nice not so little flat here in the city of Koblenz which is a b*** to furnish, but hey this means I can go shopping!! ;-)

One of my top priorities will be a drum carder (oh yeah baby...) and a brilliant camera to take some brilliant pics of brilliant yarn for brilliant people.

So there is hope that I will lead a normal ordinary regular life. Peace out. Amen. Namaste.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Giveaway: Pumpkin Soup

I thought it is time to liven things up a bit here just in time for the cold but cozy season with plenty of knitting. Well, I myself knit all year round, but anyways... we have a great giveaway! You can win this nice, bright, colorful and very soft yarn:

I named it Pumpkin Soup, because I was cooking pumpin soup the other day and I was thinking about how nice a yarn in these colors would be: orange of pumkins and carrots, yellow of potatoes and a bit of green. While my veggies were boiling I rushed down to the carder and came up with a well cooked batt of fine merino fiber. I spun it and plied it with a thin cotton thread in orange, and in the end it was 105 g and 113m.
One lucky winner will be the new owner of this beautiful yarn. If you want to participate, you just have to send us your favorite pumpkin recipe. We will evaluate them and choose the one we like best. It should be a full recipe you tried yourself (we would not appreciate it much if you just copy & paste something from the internet), or some really super secret or traditional or innovative thing you do to your pumpkins. Oh and it can be salty and also sweet (including baking).
Please send the recipe by email to info(at)authenticfiction.net (replacing the (at)). A ravelry message to cheshire-cat or impronerd is also fine. You have time to do so until October 22nd and we will then decide the days after who is the lucky winner.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011


I owe you some pictures of the indigo-dyeing! So I followed the instructions in "A Dyer's Garden" by Rita Buchanan, but I just had about half the indigo leaves that I should have for the amount of fibers I used.

It was a lengthly process, I think I managed to keep everything at the right temperature and the pot-in-a-pot waterbath system worked quite well. In the end the soup was quite smelly, so I thought I could have used urine after all, because that spectralite stuff can't be anything much different. I put in two portions of wool and wool/silk fibers and awed at the magic of color changing after airing the dipped fibers. The second portion was already much paler than the first one, so I decided to give them a second dip. And I am not completely sure, because it was already late in the evening after the first dip and I could not see the colors very good, but I think after the first dip the colors were deeper and not so pale. Anyways, I will try on it further if my plants ever grow back sufficiently. Here is my result:

The second portion has hardly any color and it looks more greyish. I think after the first dip it still had some ice blue, but if it faded because of the second dip or because of drying and washing I can't tell. Oh and the silk did not seem to take up the dye as much as the wool.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

True Blue

Just a note: though Tini is going to move, my humble self is still in the business. Though I am quite occupied, but whenever there is an order coming up, I surely will fulfill your wishes and ship any yarn your heart desires.

Now back to the topic! Since I have a small garden now (and own the book "A Dyer's Garden" by Rita Buchanan for even a while longer), I finally could go and grow indigo and dye with it. The indigo dyeing can be a smelly and lengthly process, using a fermented soup which includes urine, but Buchanan describes a fast method with fresh leaves, and using spectralite and no urine. I had to order the spectralite in Britan, which took a strangely long time to arrive. I did not use "real" indigo, but polygonium tinctorium (japanese indigo or dyer's knotweed) but that has the same color pigment as indigofera tinctoria. I had started the seeds in spring in a small greenhouse, and later I planted them to a sunny garden patch and crossed my fingers that they will grow readily. To my delight, they did so! Now they even start to flower which makes me hope to harvest some seeds later that year. Here they are in their green beauty:

I just cut off around 90% of it, I just left the stems with the most evolved flowers. It is said that it will regrow readily so I maybe can dye with it again later that year. I picked all the leaves from the stems and started the extraction process. Until now it looks good, I have a liquid which seems to be of a dark green, but there are several more steps to follow. I will keep you posted on the results!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Times they are a-changing

A lot of changes has happend in the last couple of months. next to some personal changes am I starting a new job in the middle of September and will move to the beautiful city of Koblenz in Germany. but before then I will go on my long awaited holiday (I know, unemployment is hard..;-)) so I will not be able to reply to requests or send out orders till Aug 29th.

Wish you all a wonderful summer or winter!
So long, Tini

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

TdF Day 10 & 11

I got my spinning wheel running again and after being held up with work and family I am now a proud member of Ravelry's "Spinkult"-Team :-). And having fun.

Day 10 was just a plain simple soysilk warm-up. Nothing fancy but so soft and cuddly *sigh*

Day 11 turned out to be a shipwreck. Not me, but the yarn. Blue, white and light green merino with mohair locks and some wooden beads. Stormy sea and a sunken ship = shipwreck. No harm was done to humans, animals or actual ships. Promise ;-).

Friday, April 29, 2011

Busy Bee

I know it has been a while since the last post, but I was well occupied with moving, working, a bit of travelling, seeing the family and also creative stuff. I hope I can catch up with that in some future blog posts.

But what I would really announce now is that I will show up at a local craft fair tomorrow! *Squeee*
I just wrote them to add me to their mailing list to be notifyed earlier next year, but they said that a free spot is available because someone cancelled. It is totally unexpected and I have to organise a table, chairs, table cloths etc. and go through the things I would like to sell.
I will share with Katharina, like for the christmas market and expect it to be quite fun. Here are the details:

Marché Artisanal de Mies
9 am to 6 pm
Saturday, April 30
In front of the Administration Communale,
1, rue du Village, 1295 Mies

You can have a look at photos from the 2009 edition here. It seems to be a very nice market, with even a small flea market, animals, music and plant sellers. I just hope the weather will be fine, because we don't have any tent or pavillion. If you are in the area, come and have a look!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

It's a baby!

I finally finished two projects I have been drooling over for quite some time. "It's a boy!" and "It's a girl!".
I found the blue polka dot baby buttons in Cardiff and the were screaming out "spin me in, spin me in!". How could I resist that? And when I ripped off my pearl necklace in the same week I knew I also had to spin a girl equivalent. And they are sooooooooooooo cute! You just want to hug and cuddle them all day, make them laugh and sing them to sleep...

Take a look for yourself

Wanna hold?

Take care, Tini

Friday, February 11, 2011

Wakey wakey, have some tea!

So the coffee dyeing went fairly well. Definitively a way to destroy coffee. I also found my two value packs of british black tea I had bought just for dyeing a while ago. I am also no big fan of black tea, because it makes me feel quite weird. But the smell is very pleasant - I was just concerned that the vapours of so much tea would cause some insomnia but it seemed to have no effect whatsoever.

I found a recipe which said something like 8 tea bags for 5l, which would dye 100 g of yarn and I was surprised, checked my tea pack and realized I could have dyed 1kg of yarn with those 80 tea bags which were in it. I re-checked the reicpe and it said it would become some kind of beige, so I decided to make some experiments on my own.
First I used 10 bags, and that gave some quite dark beige, bright brown. Then I used the same dyebath again, put in new fiber and another 20 bags and reached a nice caramel brown. In the end, it put in the rest of the 50 bags and put in more silk and wool/silk blend and got some dark copper.

I like the colors, and it is really easy peasy with the tea bags, no filtering neccessary and no dirty fibers (as long as no tea bags burst open). And very nice colors for a low price.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Wake up and smell the coffe!

As I already reported, we will move soon to another apartment. I took this as a reason to go through my things and sort out what I don't need anymore, because I don't want to drag along all those things I never use from one place to the other.
I came across an old packet of coffee. I must say, I don't drink coffe because I just don't like it. I'm more the tea and hot chocolate type, and the only way I ever consume coffee is in coffee flavoured chocolate. This beforementioned packet of coffee is a leftover from my mum and I kept it because I planned to do some dyeing with it. Well, I never came around to do it, and now I thought why should I move coffee and undyed roving, when I also can just move dyed roving? And also, the process was not very difficult, as it seems as no mordant was needed. The only bad side effect was that the appartment was filled with smells of coffee and vinegar, and thats something neither me nor my boyfriend like much. Anyways, here is the result:

I used merino roving, which I put in at two different times and some tussah silk. I really like the colors, soft brown and beige, and the silk really looks amazing. I am just afraid that I can't spin it before we move, because there are two or three more yarns to finish before and I have so much other stuff to do. There are also two packs of black tea which emerged from the depths of the junk room...

Saturday, February 5, 2011

The Patchwork Venture

I think I have mentioned my patchwork affinity some time, and in the last weeks it set out in action. After collecting many pretty fabric pieces I planned to sew a cozy for my android phone after this tutorial.

Well, I never finished it. But I got inspired by the stripes and since it was getting cold outside and I dragged out my rapeseed heating pillow I got from my dear sister in law for christmas the year before, I thought this might be a nice first project to practice my sewing skills. And I did not just do one, but already a bunch because it was so much fun to do it (and I had to get rid of 5 kilos of seeds). Here are a few:

I really like my heating pillow and the rapeseed is just perfect because it is small and stays hot for a long time, it was still functional after using it for one year and the ingenious design of separated chambers keeps the seed in place. They are easy and quick to be heated up in the microwave or also cooled down in the freezer. Combined with the pretty cotton fabric they are just adorable. And I sewed them with two layers of fabric to keep it stable and also to give it a bit more of thermal isolation. I decided to have one side built up by fabric strips, and a solid piece on the back. Some pillows are gifts for friends, and one I made with my favorite fabrics for myself, voila:

But there are five more I consider to put into the shop and give it a try. And there are so many more small projects I can think of I would really much like to do and which could go well in the stripe scheme, next might be a knitting needle roll, because I need one for myself anyways. So stay tuned if you are in for a little bit of "off-topic".

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Making Glass Beads

Last weekend was quite short because I took a one-day-course in making lampwork beads. Since there was no offered course in the close area, I had to go to Bern which thus meant getting up at quarter to 6. On a saturday. yay. We started out making simple round beads, then advanced to some different shapes like cubes, cylinder and flat beads.

After that went pretty well, we learned how to mix different colors and add little knobs and dots etc. There is really a lot you can do! Unfortunately some of my nicest beads broke at the end after taking them off the sticks or while cleaning. Obviously I should have let them cool off more smoothly. Anyways, here they are:

They don't look very exciting, but after some practice I think I could make some which are prettier. Also, I don't have the experience yet which colors go well with each other. Our teacher also had some mouth-watering examples from earlier classes and I am considering to continue and take an advanced course some time.

Moving Sale!

It really took a while to find a new appartment, but we finally suceeded! I am excited and can't wait to move. It also means:
- I am going to try growing some dyeplants because we will have a tiny bit of garden and a much sunnier appartment! I already bought some indigo seeds (japanese indigo and woad to be precise, as I heard that other species of real indigo are hard to grow in our region and I could still try them next year) , hollyhock, safflower and asperula tinctoria, and I will see what else I can scrape up.
- I am thinking about getting a real loom with 4 shafts, but that will depend on the space which will be still free after we settled in and if I feel much like weaving. Recently I did some backstrap/loom-less weaving which was not too bad, and I still have my Kromski Harp dormant in my bookshelf, but still, a real loom would be something nice...
- I am dreaming about having a nicely organized spot for all my fibers, yarns, fabrics and supplies, because at the moment they are just in ugly cardboard boxes, and also a dedicated place for sewing would be so cool...
- I will try to keep my yarns for sale easily acessible, so I don't expect any delays in shipping time.
- I will be grateful if we have less stuff to drag around, so I decided to make a little moving sale. I reduced the prices of the following ten yarns, so this is your opportunity if you like them:



Black Glass

Blue Fire

Rustic Green



South Africa

Finally, I will have to think about shipping costs. Because going to France will not be so easy anymore (unless I find another French village nearby) and the Swiss Post is just unbelievable expensive. But maybe Tini is willing to host my yarns and ship them from Germany, which apparently has become even cheaper. We will see what we figure out.

Monday, January 10, 2011

And the winner is...

... drumroll...
... more drumroll...
... even more drumroll...
... just a bit more drumroll...

Dova113! She has faved our shop on etsy and was chosen by the very impartial random number generator. Congratulations!!!

But all you other folks, don't be sad, because you still will get %offs! You will be contacted individually in the next days and you will receive a personal code word and the amount of your %off. If you order something and communicate the password, we will refund you afterwards. Thanks a lot for joining in, it would be nice if you keep following us and we will surely give you another opportunity to win.

On the road again

Happy new year everyone from me as well! I have had another big change in my life.
I moved from London back to my mum's (yes, funny comments can be made later) and am applying now for jobs and stuff. Then I will move again (I hate moving and have been doing it 4 times in 18 months. I should work on my attitude...) and hopefully stay there for well let's say 12 months?
My time in London was splendid, brilliant, mind boggling, awesome and just plain wonderful! But it's finally time to grow up (a little) and start a decent job with decent payment and a future. I will keep you updated on that new year's resolution.

We have also received a very nice picture of a scarf made out of our "Snowflakes on ice"! Thank you very much, Saskia!. You can check out her wonderful blog (in German)with great projects here!

So long and take care!

Thursday, January 6, 2011


You might have noticed, that there was no announcement of a winner of the yarn give away yet. This is because we have been sooo busy in the last days and I have been far away from my pc and did not have the chance to look for all the people who are in the drawing. So we will just extend the deadline (after all, there is still a bit of holiday spirit around) until sunday, January 9th! So you still can gain lots of %s off and be the lucky winner of "Soft Glacier"!

I wish everyone a happy, peaceful, healthy, successful and prosperous new year!