30 September 2006


Hey there,

I hope y'all are doing well and having a good weekend. I have finally managed to get the camera, computer and myself to the Place of Internet Access to do a post. Sometimes I hate that we don't have internet at home...but then part of me loves the excuse to be disconnected and since I have wireless at work, I don't feel like I miss all that much.

Here goes into what's new in my knitting world. A week ago I put myself on an abstinence program. No buying yarn until two big projects and three small projects were done. The quick list is this:
Small Projects:
1) Shedir hat
2) Baby Hat for-soon-to be-born neice
3) Green socks
4) Baby Burp cloth from Mason Dixon for soon-to-be-born neice

Big Projects:
1) Felted Market Bag from Weekend Knitting
2) Alpaca Shawl (laceweight)
3) Rowan Tweed aran project (AKA the sweater that isn't)

So last week I completed Small #2 & #4 and then Big #1 yesterday. So what did I do to reward particularly my ability to complete a project requiring colorwork?...yep, I broke, I failed, I fell off the wagon and bought yarn. In my defense the yarn was on $35 and will make an entire sweater. And I finally established which pattern to use and started the laceweight shawl....but I still broke. So...one off the big list, one added on...fair trade I suppose. And I am still on the fence about knitting the green socks as the yarn is really scratchy. I should just give the yarn to goodwill. That would solve one of the small project issues....:)

So without furhter ado, here's an explanation of the photos. The first is to illustrate to Miss Aimee that she will have PLENTY of yarn for her Sunshine Yarns socks. Of course my feet are a little smaller, but my socks are snuggly and a little big because the pattern was a little bigger than my shoe size. So rest assured, you will be fine in the yardage department!

And the other photos are of my first ever fair isle project. And my first attempt at duplicate stitching...I am actually pretty proud of how it turned out. I did modify the yarn (used Cascade 220) which made for a slightly smaller bag, and changed the handles. They wanted you to continue the pattern on the handles, which seem daunting to me considering that it required fair isle on the purl side (SUCKS) as well as using the last part of one row and the first part of another row until the straps got small enough. It made my brain hurt at a point in the project when I was ready to just be DONE. So, I made striped handles and liked how they turned out. Now to figure out what the bag will be used for...Right now it's just part of the evergrowing collection.

17 September 2006

Dating and Knitting

And she's off... 2 dates, comin' up. Aimee, I'll be able to fill you in, in person, on Friday. As for knitting. I've discovered that my 12 row repeat of the travelling vine scarf is now taking me 32 minutes. 5 down, many to go...depending on how much 2 skeins lasts me, I calculate between 20-27 repeats. I'm not going to do the math. I'll just jinx myself by forgetting a yarn over or two. My plan is 1-2 a day. Maybe I should take the train to Portland....hmm...more knitting time.

16 September 2006

Knitting and Dating

Only one of the three RHK bloggers is in the market for a date. That would be me. When Aimee really moved to Portland, I said, okay Lorie, it's time. No more Friday knitting nights at Aimee's. Nor does a woman meet eligible bachelors sitting AT HOME knitting. Alas, as of today, it's back to Match.com. I took advice from the Yarn Harlot and crafted my profile sans mention of the word knitting, knits, knitted, or any variation thereof. However, I do believe "librarian" snuck in there somehow, as did "cat." Hmm... One thing is true: more dating = less knitting. I'll keep you posted on the progress of both. -lv

More Kates

Here she is...I love the Kate! Her shirt looks a little wonky, cause it is, but I love her, flaws and all. I got MUCH better knitting with dpns and would like to make another Kate asap. I knit mine on size 7 since I don't own size 8 dpns. Thanks to Kate's creator Jess Hutchison and to Knitty.com for the free Kate pattern.

More cat beds

My cat bed is also done. There is an earlier post of the pre-felted bed (i.e. Rastaman cap). Post-felted it became a beret, modeled by this lovely stump. I dried it over an old lampshade stuffed with plastic bags. Finished product was nicely shaped for about 33 minutes. Now it's flat as a a pancake, Aimee and I used different patterns, and I made some modifications on the side part that I shouldn't have -- shoulda followed directions. But all in all you can see that Peeps still likes it. BTW, this was made with 4 skeins KnitPicks Sierra in Cranberry with about 1/2 skein of Lamb's Pride Worsted in Tiger Lily. I knit 16 wedges on size 15 needles (26" diameter) and 4" up the side. The pattern is here: http://webhome.idirect.com/~quanah/patcatb.html

Kates and Cat Beds

I finally finished another project! I finished my second Kate. She is a bit larger than Kate 1 (3 inches larger in diameter) and I don't know why. But I love her just the same and as both are gifts for my nieces, the bigger Kate can be for the big sister.

Besides finishing Kate, I've been working on a Christmas present for someone who reads the blog. It is at work so I can work on it during breaks and lunch, since I'm now required to take breaks and lunch. Hmmmm. I'm not sure how I feel about that. My days are just as long as they used to be with commuting and lunching, so no free time for knitting.
The cats have discovered the cat bed. I had made it huge so that both cats could fit in it when felted. Ha. It shrunk by 50%! Its a one cat bed. Things to do differently next time: don't do so many decreases up the side. Cupping does not work. If I hadn't decreased so much, the sides would stand straight and then it may have worked as a two cat bed. Anyhow, here are photos of said cats enjoying the bed.

Lola is on the left and Spike on the right. So cute.

I'm still working on the baby blanket. I need to finish because the baby is due in the next few weeks. Starting a new job and getting sick are not conducive to knitting time. I come home at night, eat dinner, watch tv or read for a bit and head to bed by 9! Argh. I will adjust soon and return to knitting fever.

For the lovely poster who asked about the tea kettle. You can find the nicer ones at fancy kitchen stores. I don't know how much they cost, since it was a present. Mine is a Capresso. There are many brands to choose from and mine is my new favorite thing!

Gratuitous yarn porn:
This is the Karabella Boise in color 63. It is a blend of 50% Cashmere and 50% Merino. I can't stop touching it. It is the softest yarn I have ever owned. I want to drop all projects and knit my scarf out of this now! I can't praise it enough. You must go buy some now!

Okay, enough about that. Here's a cute photo of Lola and I'm off to wake up and drink tea and knit:
Lola is not in kitty jail. She is in one of her many cat cozy places that are spread throughout our tiny house. Yes, my cats are spoiled.

10 September 2006

Yarn Harlot and Birthday presents

First off, thank you Yarn Harlot for coming to Eugene. You were fabulous! You made us giggle, snicker, and full out laugh. It was all good. I loved your stories of telling people you're a knitter and the silence that follows. Imagine this if you will: telling people you are a librarian, knitter, and cat owner. Its all downhill from there. I would love to sit and knit and laugh with you one day. Hope to see you again soon.

Lorie stopped by our new digs in the Portland area. Her visit inspired me to finish the cat bed. It is felted and quite pretty, if I do say so myself. However, said cats from first paragraph have yet to give it the time of day. Here's the metamorphasis from pre to post-felting.

Besides the cat bed, I'm finishing up my second Kate. I have two arms and a leg to go! Hopefully today she will be put together in all of her glory. Inexplicably the second Kate is 3 inches larger around in diameter than the first kate. I call her big sister kate, since the pair are intended for my little nieces. I'm also trying to finish the baby afghan I started so I can send it off as soon as the baby is born.

I recieved fabulous gifts for my birthday. Dani knit me not one but TWO washcloths from Mason Dixon. And hand dyed yarn from some other Dani! What fabulous birthday prezzies.

Lorie gave me my favorite book of the year--Knitting in Nature. Its full of inspiration. My grandmother got me the Yarn Harlot's book Knitting Rules. I'll also be purchasing Big Girl Knits and One Skein with birthday money. My friend Marla gave me Debbie Bliss Soho in a cream, gray, and purple colorway. Stunning.

Rumor has it I'm getting two skeins of Karabella Boise in red, but I have yet to see it! All in all a happy knitting birthday. Dani is the yarn enough to make a full pair of socks? If not, I'm knitting a lacy scarf with it. But if so, I can't wait to get it on my feet. My sister made me a set of three fabric nesting bowls to hold my yarn in and display it around the house. They are really pretty. So pretty I like to look at them without yarn. However, after listening to Stephanie talk about moths, I'm reading to buy a chest freezer and store it all there. Reminder to self: go and invest in many ziploc bags. Many Many Many.

Rich totally got me on my birthday. You can read more about his nefarious plans and my reaction on his blog, which is linked on the side : Mind Wanderings... Here was the final present: An electric teapot that boils water in 3 minutes! I love it. It will make my tea making habit so much faster and easier. Those Germans. Great engineering with fine looks too.

Finally here is a sunset from the Washington coast where Rich and I went yesterday. It was a great trip. We found one dead sand dollar, but saw many live ones, which is great.

09 September 2006

As is typical

As is typical with most of my jokes, they are unintentional. I did not intend to put up two of the same picture, although it does seem kind of funny with the title. I even edited the post and fixed it but that didn't seem to take affect when I looked at it. When I view the individual post it comes up...but then when I go to the blog it is the original. So enjoy the pun in my error.

Happy knitting

Peat and Repeat

Lately, I have been very much in a "do it again" mode. Not mood mind you, mode. I can't explain it, but in the last month I knitted the same scarf twice. Not, oh I got most the way through and realized that I majorly misread the pattern, resulting in frogging and re-knitting. No, that might be okay and easy to explain. I have actually, with great purpose and intention, knitted the same lace weight scarf twice. Both are still on the list to be blocked, which really doesn't have to happen until we get snow at 5200 ft here in CO. Or until the week before Thanksgiving comes, and the recipient of one of the scarves arrives for her visit. She is not a knitter, so she will not be tipped off by this entry. The peat/re-peat mode has been so strong that the other day at the LYS I purchased a skein of yarn for a winter hat, and went back and purchased a different color to make said hat twice! With no plans of giving either away, I wonder what I will do with two of the exact same hat in different colorways? Who does that?

Here are a few other things that have managed to be made/bought over the past few months. First up, is my first purchase of sock yarn from a fellow blogger. Dani (gotta support a knitter with the same name as me) from Knitting Sunshine on Etsy.com has some AMAZING colorways and great yarn. I bought two skeins, one as a gift (hopefully she got the package in the mail today or I just ruined the surprise) and the other for me. I mean, who can order yarn as a gift and not purchase a small keepsake for herself? Me, that's who. And I am so excited because I am almost done with one sock, which I will show when done and the other is started. And I am so excited about the fit, the feel and the pattern. Oh happiness is this right here! Or in a future post for y'all actually.

I broke down at 0600 in the morning one day at work on day 15 of a new work out program and decided I needed a reward for keeping up the program for 15 whole days. My fit hands typed my way to discountyarnsale.com where I purchased the pattern and yarn for the Orangina, by glampyreknits. It took me just over a week for complete and block, including ripping out all the ribbing and adding an inch to the body so that my lovely (less fit) belly would not hang out when I wear the top with a favorite pair of fancy pants. Pictures on that to come as well, since I am wearing said outfit to a work function tonight. Love the top, love the pattern, very nice and flattering.

And let's see...heres a look at my Brea Bag from berrocco with recycled yarn from my first knitted sweater (bad fit and to boot -double stranded worsted weight wool that would have been too warm for the 4.5 months I spent in antarctica!). But it makes a cute bag. Really cute one I sew in the lining...but since you all know how well I sew (what's a bobbin?) it will be MONTHS or years before that is accomplished!

Hope all is well and your visit with the Harlot was fantastic. I am SO JEALOUS! Come to Denver Yarn Harlot. I have heard so many things, so many many wonderful things!

05 September 2006

The List

Before I get off on a tangent: I forgot to grab the camera and USB cord on my way into work so I don't have photos now, but there will be soon. Currently I am halfway done with two dinosaurs (just need stuffing and sewing) for my nephew and soon to emerge neice. I am also working on Trellis Scarf Part Deux. It is from IK Spring '06 and I finished one earlier this month using Misti Alpaca in a light pink. That one is for a family friend. The current one I am working on may be for me or tucked away as a future gift. Who knows. It falls in with my futile attempts at de-stashing.

Since I am prone to list making, knitting has become a major focus on the organization front. I told myself I can't buy more yarn until half of my projects are accomplished, and that means not just the little projects. In the last month I have broken the rule twice. Once out of pure desire to have a new top....which has already been knitted and will debut soon. And the other time out of necessity. Well, that could be debated but I won't go into it yet...as someone has yet to receive her birthday gift from me which might explain my "necessary" shopping for myself.

So here is the list of what I must de-stash by actually starting and finishing projects by January, not including the Works in Progress mentioned above.

1. Purple cotton yarn bought 3 years ago for a baby blanket for neice (due at the end of October...I think I can get it done if I can only find a pattern).
2. Rowan wool (1 skein) for baby booties for neice as well.
3. Knit Picks Shine (5 skeins of assorted colors) for dinosaurs, or Mason- Dixon baby bibs or burp cloths for another baby about to be born.
4. Cascade 220 earmarked for Felted Market Bag from Weekend Knitting. Procrastination project due to the color work. I love cabling, I love lace knitting yet I have never done color work...I am afraid, and have no confidence about it. I just need to dig in and go for it, or else it will stay with me for years!
5. 2 Skiens Alpaca with a Twist Laceweight yarn for a gorgeous shawl...yet again my confidence was high at purchase, but has plummeted since then....must.just.jump.in
6. Rowan Aran Tweed yarn that I have had for 3 years for a sweater. First sweater choice didn't work out, then two others have met with disasterous results. Maybe I need to make these 5 skeins something other than a sweater, but what?
7. 2 Skeins Jo Sharp Aran Tweed for a hat or something... who knows.
8. 1 Skeins Knitting Sunshine Sock yarn for the Embossed Leaves socks from IK Winter 05 (I think).

Lots on the list and not enough time before I start the RN program in January. My goal is to destash by then so that I am not too distracted by knitting to study. The only catch is I need to stop finding more projects that I want to make.

So, not an exciting post, but one that might (I can hope) get me motivated and on track!

Happy Knitting.