Friday, April 24, 2009

Angora Embroidery

Here is the improved angora design from D'Lynn & Zip-Stitch. This bunny is done in a wooly thread that is almost yarn (one step removed). It is wool/acryllic for a very fluffy effect, perfect for animals. Here is a picture (actual stitchout) of an order I did for Julie of Julie's handspun yarns, and Spoiled Rotten Rabbits (French and Satin angoras). The above was an actual stitchout, not a representation, but since my flash went off, the rabbit looks a bit yellow from the color of the flashbulb. (Much whiter in person). The design is available from Zip-Stitch, It is available in 2 sizes, 5 X 5½ or 4.5 X 5. Or it can be stitched via customer order as above, your embroidery blanks or I can provide them too. Hope you enjoy!

Friday, April 03, 2009

At Long Last!
My website is back up again. It was a long 3 weeks, in which I lost some of my SEO standings, but I'm sure it will come back up again soon. I also don't have to try to post from the laptop. The keyboard was weird and I made all kinds of typos, and the screensize was small enough that I couldn't tell! Anyway, give me some feedback. If you can reach, let me hear from you!

Factoid: Almost all breeders shear their rabbits now instead of pluck.
  • 1. It is easier
  • 2. It is more kind to the animal
  • 3. The length tends to become more even, fewer shorts just coming in again from the plucking
  • 4. It makes more halo to the yarn!
  • 5. Plucking reduces the density over time. The guard hair becomes stiffer, and the down diminishes, so the ratio of guard to down gets larger, but overall less fiber

Cheers, Donna

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

I just HAVE to sing Betty Chu's praises. Her English are second to none. I just trimmed Chu's Honeysuckle, my doe from her, down yesterday and she gave me the astonishing wool shearing number of 9.3 ounches! That is just astonishing for a pure English angora rabbit. While my Germans have given me a pound or more on that interval (3 mo), Honeysuckle's pile of fiber is every bit as big. I am going to find the same sized sack of pure German and spin both of them to the same girth as nearly as I can. I'm betting the English goes just as far as German that might weigh much more than it. It is because each strand of German is heavy. So 2 identical volumes of fiber, Eng & Ger, the German will weigh more. But is it *really* any more fiber? I don't think so, and I'm going to attempt to offer some evidence of it. Even if it doesn't, there is just no comparison between the 2 fibers. The English is so much softer and luxurious! Who would want anything else? (And did I mention that she eats just half what Germans do?)
Edit: 4/10/09 I've decided the better (and more controlled way) to test English against German would be to take exactly 1 ounce of each and spin them as nearly identically as possible, and see if the english doesn't give you more length. Hard to judge volumes due to compacting fiber, etc.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Just a quick note to let everyone know that my website is temporarily down. I have to reconfigure the whole network due to AT&T's crazy way of connecting you. It is a huge pain in the (you-know). Honeysuckle, my doe from Betty Chu will be bred this week, and babies will be due at the end of April (with luck!). The sire is Chu's Clover, whose littermates went BIS and BOS in California recently!!! The litter is already spoken for, I have a waiting list. But if you are insterested, you could email me at, to see if any might become available. Honeysuckle is fawn and Clover is tort, so we'll have all tort and fawn in this litter. I was completely done with Germans, but I've had so many requests - mostly from former purchasers, that I will be breeding a litter of 84% German babies. Both individuals have softer coat than what the German club and ARBA require (of Giants, ARBA doesn't recognize Germans). So if you want to show, or register your rabbit, you probably will lose points on texture. BUT, if you like softness, an easy keeper, and very little guard hair to deal with, you might contact me for one of these babies. I'm selling them as woolers, so they won't be as expensive as pure Germans. BUT, the English litter is at Grand Champion level and they will be full price. As I say, email me for details, on either litter.

Monday, January 05, 2009

Finally got this picture of little Clover uploaded! Clover is soon to be a papa rabbit, if we are lucky. He is a great little bunny, a gentle soul and very easy to take care of. His fiber does not matt, but if I let it go a little, it forms these great little balls, about the side of a pea, out on the very tips. These are GREAT for adding soft squishy slubs to your yarn. Soft, soft, soft.
Clover's girlfried will be none other than Chu's Honeysuckle, daughter of Chu's Fawntasia. Fawntasia and her brother did a lot of winning out on the west coast in ARBA sanctioned shows. So did Clover's dam & sire, Chu's Makisam & Chu's Emelyn. Both are little sweeties, with beautiful English type, and wonderfully soft, easy care coats. Non-matting, non-molting. Their coats were 5 inches when I brought them home. Clovers went on to get around 7 inches and he kept a clean bottom and no tangles. (I did lightly brush the ends once a week). These 2 are easy keepers, in addition to coming from Grand Champion level English angora. I'm so grateful to Betty for them! Clover's littermates have been doing some real winning out in California. Here are their pictures from the No. Cal Angora Breeder's Guild blog:

Sunday, January 04, 2009

Happy 2009! I usually cannot sign on to my account here on Blogger using my regular browser, Opera. But since I am here now, I will tell you about my other blog, which I CAN access. It is at

I've created many new patterns from beautiful fluffy yarns since I've been able to post here, and I will try to get pictures of them soon. (I need a good model!). Meantime, enjoy this picture of my beautiful new little buck from Betty Chu. He is a sweetheart. I also have a new doe from Betty too, but I don't have a picture of her yet.

Oh dear, Bummer. I cannot upload the picture, either. My computer keeps trying to connect to something called "" and my virus scanner blocks it. Oh well, I can upload picture to the other blog. Check it out!

Sunday, October 29, 2006

About the new yarns!
Hello everyone. I've had several inquiries about the new yarns. You might want to bookmark this page, because I DO have a bunch of it coming! The first batch is 50/50 23micron merino cross and angora in white This wool is fabulous, and I prefer it to straight merino. It has a sumptuous loft to it and even spun alone it feels more like cashmere than merino, but combined with angora, it is to die for! This is to be spun at 3,000 yards per lb, making it suitable for the standard gauge knitting machine. But if you want to handknit this yummy stuff, just run it double and it will be fingering weight.

The second batch is 5 lbs of 35%Shetland lamb/35% alpaca/30% angora. All the animals were naturally colored fawns. I'm sorry, but I don't think I could be persuaded to sell any of this stuff! It will be 3,000 yds per lb too.

The last 3 batches are more suited to hand knitting. It is fingering/sport weight (about 1,200 yds/lbs). The firstone is 70%creamy colored Shetland lamb/30% angora. This will be creamy in color. The rest will be 70% of the same yummy white merino cross first mentioned and 30% angora, in the same gauge, more suitable for hand knitting. Again, these sheep were extremely white in their natural condition. Not bleached, just naturally white beautiful stuff in 23 micron.

I also have rovings coming back, 70% Shetland/30% angora in creamy white, brown/white brindle, and natural gray. I also have 5 lbs of gorgeous Shetland lamb in natural black coming back as a batt for felt. This lamb had NO BLEACHED ends, so thie batt will be pure black, not grizzled gray, and no reddish/black cast to it from the bleached ends. The lamb must have been hot natured and spent all her time in the barn, because she obviously was not in the sun. Plus she was large, the fleece was almost 6 lbs. But still a fine micron. I will be using about 1/2 of this myself, but the other half will be up for grabs.

Email me indystitch if you have any interst in any of these, or want prices. The fine knitting machine yarn will be on cones and lightly oiled for knitting machine purposes. The others will be in 8 oz dye skeins, but I can skein off smaller amounts for anyone that needs it. It will be priced by the ounce.

Note: All the 85% angora/15% merino yarn in sport/fingering weight is gone now. I probably will not be getting more of it in, because it did not work out well for my knitting machines. It was a beautifully constructed yarn, but just not appropriate for my purposes. If you are interested in more of this yarn, check out the IAGARB pages at IAGARB I know there is a new run of it in the mill right now and it takes about 3 mo. to get it back.

Happy fibering!

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

OK, they're not made from angora - at all. This is one slipper of a pair that I knitted from roving. The pattern was for a clog, but I decided to enclose the heel too, and the result was this. Being made from roving, these are extra thick and warm and sturdy. They get felted in the washing machine after they are made, so you knit them large. I've been wearing a pair of these for 3-4 years. The original pattern I used was the clog one on this page: In order to enclose the heel, make everything exactly as called for until 4 rows before the top is done. At that point, on a knit row, continue on to the end of the side. When going back, continue to shape as before (k or p 2 together in pattern) at the previous point, and also decrease 2 on either side of the center 2 stitches (if you have a single center stithch use the one on the outer side. Then, k2 tog, then ssk2 tog for proper slant, continue on to side of heel. Continue for 3 more rows in this manner, working center decreases on K rows only. Save all stitches by running a length of yarn or string through them. Make outer sole exactly as called for, except at the end, do NOT bind off, but continue with 3 stitches (decrease if necessary for your size) up the back side, catching up the side stitches with each row. When it is equal to the sides, pick up saved stitches and knit 3 more rounds, decreasing at side points again, and 2 stitches in the back. Make cuff. You are done! Or you could be wise and make them exactly as Suzanne says to! I have discovered that if you don't put addtional decreases across the top when you start to knit all the way to the edge, the top will be too large. Also, you want the heel to cup in slightly to that it doesn't slide off every time you take a step, and that is the reason for the decreases in the back. The other ones can be omitted, but I think it makes the slipper fit more snugly and makes it warmer. JMHO. This pattern is great for using up roving that you bought but aren't especially fond of. You can make them all colors, or run 2 together, stretching the fibers out to approximate the same thickness as the McDermott roving. I actually ran some darker along with the gray on the inner sole. And did I mention they go F-A-S-T? This one was knitted in one evening. You use size 13, 15, or 17 needles!

Saturday, October 07, 2006

My 100% handspun German angora knee socks are almost done. Instead of the usual short row heel, I tried a classic heel this time. The back of it was done in K1slip1, for extra strength. Plus I held a strand of silk thread with it as I worked for more strength too. I will post a picture as soon as I have them done. I cannot wait until winter when these things are keeping my feet & legs warm! I already have my next project on the needles too. They are the fabulous Meg Swanson socks in the current issue of Vogue knitting. Very seldome do I make thing exactly as is called for in the pattern, but these socks were so striking, I decided to "go for it". More later.....

Well, it is later now. The socks are done and here are some pictures. These are incredibly soft and warm. They are 100% German angora with great halo (although it doesn't show much in the picture.) Note that the top rib has some body and some resillience. This is a characteristic of *German* angora. The other breeds do not give a rib enough "body" to recover or even stay up. (There is no wool knitted along with this rib, only the angora). The background is some felt that I made a while back. It is waiting to become something. It is 60% merino and 40% angora too! Love that angora!