Previous month:
March 2007
Next month:
May 2007

Blue on Blue

No heartbreak here, as it was a picture perfect weekend and we spent as much time as possible enjoy the out of doors.  Breakfast and dinner on the patio, a trip to the lake for a photo shoot and knitting in the open air made for a marvelous mini-vacation weekend.

Abluelakethatflectstheskyonsunday_2 Asailboatoutonthewaterbehindlacyw_2 The lake was the color of the sky and the beautiful blue Lacy Waves finally showed her true color against the backdrop of lake water.  After loosing one full evening of knitting because of an inability to count correctly, it was only by shear luck and full press effort that Lacy Waves was able to meet up for the scheduled photo shoot.  The sleeves were sewn in while watching our favorite Sunday Morning TV program.  All the other work had been complete so once the sleeves were in place it was off to the lake, the Great Salt Lake, for a sunny day photo op.

Aprettylacywaveshangingatthelake

Theinsetisanicefinishingtouch Lacysleevesisopenbutnottoolacy The inset was sewn into the front before blocking and this proved to be a good way to go.  Everything went together beautifully and the fabric is light, soft and comfortable even in the sun. The lacy sleeves are open but not too loose or full. Lacy Waves is the type of top that can be worn in every season.

Antalopeislandinthebackgroundofpict

Pattern: Lacy Waves
From: Lace Style
Yarn: Silky Wool color Petrol (35)
Modifications: 2" long on both the body and sleeves
Time to Knit: April 1- April 29, 2007 (Finally a sweater finished in 2007!)


Five Easy Pieces

Thebackoflacywavessweater

The Back.  Simple stockinette stitch, lovely fabric, softly textured, the back is ready for its part in holding together the other pieces.

Onesleeveandsecondsleevestartedforl

The Sleeve, times two.  Simple lace, ready to add a bit of panache, and elegant style, to the sweater.

Thefronttolacywavesswaeter

The Front.  This is the piece by which all others will be judged.  It is rich in color and texture like the others, but it is the framework for the special piece, the piece that sets off the whole garment, the Inset.

Theinsettolacywavessweater

The Inset. Made of lace and cables, full of whimsy and charm. This pieces is the icing on this cake of Lacy Waves.

Sew them all together and you have...

More to come.

Psssst...tomorrow is Judy’s birthday.  Have a grand day, Judy!


Thinking Ahead (or Jumping the Gun)

One Bigass Sock Fini! It was fun to knit with this big, fat, squooshy yarn and it was very quick knitting, too!  Three sessions of SnB was all it took and now it is on to the second sock.

Thebigasssockiswaitingforamate

Vesperthecoventedsockyarnindesertsu It won't be long before I'll need another easy sock project and, to that end, I've been trying to decide what's next.  The good thing/bad thing about a large sock yarn stash is that just choosing the next colorway can be daunting. I want to knit them everything. I'm also trying to stay away from people who sell sock yarn (like Blue Moon, I'm rather crazy for Knitty Rocks) and trying to use some of the fabulous colors that already grace my collection. I may go with the Vesper yarn that's been wound and waiting for awhile.   The colorway of STR many of you were crazy for in yesterday's picture is Love in Idleness which my picture showed a bit washed out.

Newsquareisbetterinsizeandthecolors After looking more closely at the squares I've been hooking, I decided it was too loose...a loose hooker is not a good thing. I went down a size on my hook and started anew with some of the new colors.  It looks much better and I'm excited for the red to arrive to add in the mix.  It's a fun project and once I settle down to hook, it should go rather quickly.

Almostfinishedknittingoflacywaves It has been difficult, but I have stayed away from Emmylou this week in an effort to get some knitting done and it seems to be working. Hopefully Lacy Waves will be finished this week (but don't hold your breath) and I can get up the motivation to decide what’s next.  I'd like to knit another summerish sweater.  Because of my love for Emmylou, knitting progress has slacked off.  I am still, and will be forever, about the process of knitting, but it is rather sad to see that my only knitting accomplishments this year have been socks and scarves.  It will feel very good to have a sweater under my belt and another should follow quickly on its heels.  So....

Here are a few of the ideas bouncing around head. Please weigh in, I love to hear what you think.

For the following projects I would need to purchase yarn:
Rowan "Joy" (This is crochet and my biggest concern is that I'm too old to wear a sweater that 'cute'.)
Rowan "Lizzi" (This is a design I would wear often.)
Rowan "Flotsam Jetsam" (This pattern speaks to me over and over.)

For this list of projects I have the needed yarn: 
Perhaps Tilia or some other sweater in Silky Wool, Shocking Pink. (However, I am just finishing a sweater in Silky Wool.)
Memories of the Ukraine (lace pullover) from The Natural Knitter in Aubergine Euroflax.  (This is a long shot, as I'm leaning towards a cardigan style.)

Usually, I don't stash much in the way of 'sweater' projects, so there is little in the way of summer yarn in the stash.  Winter wools are well represented, but I'd rather wait until closer to fall to start something wooly.  I'm looking for other patterns that are simple and classic. I will keep looking for more ideas, but in the mean time, tell me what you think.


Still Hookin'

A bit of serendipity landed in my camera.  When Moxie and I walk each afternoon I take the camera along...just in case.  The landscape is full of blooming flowers and trees and there is a wonderland of opportunity all around.  The mountains are often in the background, but it isn't easy to capture them and the flowers. When I saw that Mt. Olympus was in this picture I was very excited.  Didn't it turn out great? Click for big.

Serendipidouspictureoflilacs

Monday, while working, I kept a watch out for the mail carrier.  My expectation/hope/desire was that she'd show up with a box from the Loopy Ewe, and she did!  Sheri has a much respected reputation around Blogland, as a shop that goes above and beyond, and I've experienced it first hand. In this package was a very nice hand written note (grrl, I just love that) and the prettiest stitch marker, which is now a spinning wheel charm.  Emmylou deserves some bling, bling, too.

Colorsforlargerthanlifebag

More luscious colors of Louet Gems Sport, in colors that will go nicely with those purchased locally, are now wound and ready to hook...except the 'Ginger' (gold) color.  I'm debating whether this is the color is right for the 'unifying effect' on my Larger Than Life Bag.  Today I'm going to order a bright red and dark brown, to replace the Ginger color.   A trip to the fabric store is coming soon, as the perfect lining needs to be found. 

Did you see that I got Teri into hookin’?  I'm rather fond of the Boteh scarf too, and think it commands a colorful varigated yarn (like Teri's using). Wonder what's in my stash...

Potentialbotehscarfyarns

Jennie’s Sound Swap sounded interesting and fun, so I decided to join.   My guess is that I’m one of the older people in the group, but what does age have to do with anything, eh?  I’m not into the 'oldies'...been there, done that...it's the new tunes I enjoy. Our local community radio station, KRCL,  plays a wide variety of sounds, with a mix of old, new, folk, rock, alt-country and indie-pop.  I listen all day (you can stream it live) and it is the sound track to my life. Paste Magazine is also a big favorite, as I get a CD mix every month, and find out what's new.  It's going to be fun to mix up something for my pal (my first CD mix) and to receive new music, too. 

So, what I want to know today is what song is in your head...RIGHT NOW?


Let there be Spin!

When my time this weekend wasn't eaten up by errands, laundry, spring cleaning and other mundane tasks, I could be found with Emmylou.  It's very true that we have a hard time being separated when I'm in the house.  She calls, she draws, she lures, she and her partners in crime, the luscious fibers.  I do admit to being a bit obsessive about spinning the Giverny BFL.  In fact, as soon as I finished the second bobbin, I started to ply them together. Only when my hand felt like it would be stuck forever in a claw formation did I stopped and take a break.  Later that night I finished up the plying, gave the skein a bath and hung it to dry.  It must have invaded my dreams as they were full of spinning, fiber and beautiful yarns. 

Anne was inspired with this colorway, the beautiful Giverny, as it truly evokes a Monet's Water Lilies paintings.  (Look under Hand-dyed Rovings if you too need to spin this beautiful BFL.)

Lovelygivernystrandsofpliedyarn

Lusciouscolorwayofgiverny

Strandsofgivernywithadimeforsize

Abeautifulskeinofbflgiverny

What started out as two ounces of fiber turned into 320 yds of  'soon to be knit' lace weight (I haven't yet measured the w.p.i.).  The fiber was a gift from Birdsong.  Fiber is a gift that keeps on giving.  Just petting it pre-spun is nice enough, but then the joy of putting the twist on is even more fabulous.  Add to that the finished yarn, the fun of knitting an item, and then, the icing on the cake, wearing it.  I'm looking forward to the next step. Thanks Birdsong!

The April selection for the Spunky Club arrived. Amy named this Strawberry Fields (she has a way with words) and I think I've found just the right thing to use for Kristi’s Spin Off  (Queen of Diamond) socks

Strawberryfieldsforeversockstobe


Unsettled

Thereisstillskiingatsnowbird For most of the weekend the sky wasn't much to see.  Susan captured a beautiful picture of the few minutes of Saturday's sun, but Sunday was just cold and dreary.  Despite the shroud covering the mountains. we headed up to Snowbird just to see how spring was getting along. As you can see winter is alive and well in the higher elevations and spring is yet weeks away.  Snowbird is the only place open for skiing and it had quite a crowd.

Snowbirdisstillgettingsnow_2

We had hoped to sit on the deck and soak up some sun, but as you can see, this was not the weekend for that.  It was enjoyable to be in the mountains, breath the clean, cold air and revisit the snowy days of winter.  It seems the word 'drought' has made a recurrence in the local vernacular after only a short absence.

Firecomingfromnewlybuiltduplexoffhi Firetruckisworkingonfiretoputitout As we made it home from our weekly trek to Costco (we *heart* Costco), smoke appeared in the sky just ahead of us.  Smith and I both held our breath as we drove towards the smoke, Moxie foremost on our mind. Thankfully, it wasn't long before we realized the fire was just east of our place, so we did a little rubbernecking and drove by.  It was a home we thought was under construction, but a family had moved in only a week ago. We came home very grateful to still have the mess we live in. (I did do some spring cleaning this weekend too, but that is a rather boring subject.)

There is such sadness, so many horrors, and news that is hard to deal with or even absorb, around our world today.  My goal is to start every day with a moment of acknowledgment for the gifts that are mine.  Be grateful and giving, do what I can to be kind to all people, including our home, this planet Earth.  We have nothing to lose by coming from a place of love and, thereby, putting aside fear. 


Don't Faint...I Do KNIT!

Can you stand it! Knitting on a knitting blog! Whatever will you do?  Behind the scenes of this here blog a lot goes on that doesn't come to light.  As has been said many times, this is only a small portion of my life, only a tiny little look into what I do day in and day out.  I try to keep you up to date with my knitting life, isn't that why we're all here?  But, sometimes I just can't fit it all in to a week. There is so much more to share because I'm a multi-semi-talented person.  My spinning improves daily (because I practice-that's the key to success, or so my mother told me) and who knew I'd be hi-jacked by crochet!?  Not me, not even a week ago.

MittentimeasthebaeutifulwelldonebooBefore I tell you about what I'm knitting, I want to share a wonderful new book.  Terri Shae's Selbuvotter is an excellent book on the history of a knitting tradition and a wonderful resource for traditional knitting techniques and patterns. The mitten patterns alone would make a wonderful book, but to have the history, the understanding of where it all started and how Terri decided to bring it to light, makes it worth it's weight in gold. This is a must of you enjoy two color knitting, the history of knitting, knitting mittens or Norwegian knitting in general. In other words...just get a copy you won't be sorry. I might even start a Knit Like a Latvian mitten from the book...finally.

Sockgrowethquicklyinbigphatyarn The Fiesta Boomerang sock, which will from this point on be called the 'Bigass' sock, is growing very quickly. The picture on the right was taken after SnB last Sunday. However, it wasn't touched again until SnB on Tuesday, but only after I taught Teri to crochet.  It's big nature helps it grow in rapid fashion and that's good as the only time it will get any attention is at SnB.   The big yarn and size 3 needles might be causing a bit of pain in the thumb area of my hands...so, contact will be infrequent.  The color play in the yarn is very cool, don't you think?

Speaking of socks..my Bloomin’ Feet pal was Allison. Having a pal like Allison makes giving the gift of knit so much fun.  She was thrilled with the package and let me know in a very effusive and fun to read email ( she'll surely show the socks on her blog, too). She is expecting her first little one soon and that's the reason for the pair of tiny baby socks. Thank you, Allison for your delightful response to the socks.  Now, I'll be waiting for my BF socks to arrive! Who, oh who, could my pal be?

Lacywavesismorethanhalffinished Lacy Waves has grown rapidly this past couple of weeks.  One sleeve, the front, and the front inset, are now off the needles and the back is now in process.  I foresee a finish by months end!  LW is my first sweater of 2007, and that's rather exciting, as all I've knit this year has been socks (oh, and spin, spin, spin).   I'm more in love with Silky Wool than ever, as the hand of the fabric is great for year round wear. If only the color would show a bit more true...it is a deep turquoise, Petrol...very pretty.

Verycoldandsnowydayonwed Lucia accused me of being 'snide and gloaty' over our weather...and I was.  As they say, payback is a bitch and Wednesday (on the left) was rather stormy and cold.  But I can't help but say neener, neener again, as look how beautiful yesterday was.

Beeeeuuutifuldayintheneighborhood_2

The next few days promise to be unsettled, a bit chilly and perhaps, (but not likely) rain.  Good thing I can stay inside and spin and knit.  Enjoy your weekend!


I've Got it Bad

Marcia was worried that by picking up my hooks again, I'd be neglecting Emmylou.  Well, nothing could be further from the truth.  Emmylou and I are set for life.  It’s hard for me to even be in the same room with her and not be right there, treadling, drafting, and making yarn.  We've got it bad and that ain't good. It ain't good because knitting suffers. The yarn stash grows as Emmylou, and all the lovely fibers that sit near, have a magnetic draw that mere commercial yarn just doesn't have.

When the weekend's over
And Monday rolls around
I end up like a start out
Just spinning my heart out
She loves me like I love her
As we know we should
We've got it bad and that ain't good.

Brickcorriedaleallspunupandwaitin_2

Over the weekend Emmylou and I finished up the rich and lovely Brick Corriedale. We're getting better at spinning and plying as the second skein has more yardage and the chained plying wasn't over twisted.  We are so pleased with ourselves!  Smith will have another pair of socks in the near future.  However we, he and I, made the deal that I would get 5 pair of socks to every two of his. That means I get two more pair and then I can dive in and see how this knits up.  It's will be hard to wait, but I'm worth it. 

Asampleskeinoftargheewithroving_3You'll surely remember the green roving in last Thursday’s post as it's a rare occurrence to see green on this blog.  The wool is Targhee and I was so surprised by the character of this wool. It's spongy, sproingy, with no luster and I've found it a bit hard to spin consistently.  I decided to spin it as fine as I could in the hopes it would become a lovely fingering weight (2 ply) for a shawl.  It's going to take awhile to spin up the full 4 oz., but it's should be worth the time as the tints and tones of green are beautiful together.  To help with my lack knowledge on how to handle certain wools, I picked up In Sheep's Clothing from Three Wishes last week. It's going to be very helpful in understanding the characteristics of different wools. 

Agorgeousgorgeousgivernybflonbobb_2

In the effort to spin up something easy, Emmylou and I decided to spin the beautiful BFL that had been sitting on the shelf just begging for attention.  Anne has a wonderful eye for color so it is hard to stay out of her shop. Anne named this Giverny and it does remind me of Monet’s Water Lilies.  If only there was more time in a day to spin, knit, read and do all the other things we love. Sigh...I could sit with Emmylou for hours on end. 

Another book that I picked up this week is Teach Yourself Visually  Handspinning by Judith MacKenzie McCuin. If you are a new spinner, you need this book!! If you are an old hand at spinning, you need this book!  There is so much information on everything to do with spinning, fiber preparation, dyeing and more.  It's going to be a wonderful reference so I'm going to read every word.

For you knitters who sit and sigh when I talk about spinning or crochet, do not despair. Knitting will  (yes I have knit a bit) return tomorrow. 


All Hooked Up!

Moxieonthechrochetedafghanfrom1986 It has truly been years since I did any hooking. The last project was a large afghan, crocheted while I recuperated from surgery in 1986.  It was a pinapple somethingorother from an old craft magazine...gone are the details in the span of time, but the yarn was a favorite basic stand by, Brunswick Worsted.

During the Granny Square crazy of my crochet days (which I remember lasted half a dozen years), I made several afghans, vests and even crocheted my father a sweater. It was deep heather green (his favorite color), the same Brunswick worsted yarn, and the whole garment was hooked in a half-double crochet. It had little 'give' (and therefore had zipper in the back). It was so-o warm he could have worn it at the North Pole and not found it too hot.  I also crocheted a pink sweater with ruffles at the neck. (Thankfully the only pictures are in my head.) Ack!  Ah, the memories of bad crafting just go on and on thanks to the '70s.

Firstgrannysquareforbagwithhookset

So what is it that possessions me (us) to return to the days of yore?   It's the bag...grrl, mama needs a brand new bag (always).  Good thing I kept my set of hooks all these years.  I must confess to becoming a 'knit snob' once my needles became hookless, and while I don't see much more crocheting in my future than this one bag (famous last words?), I do need to pay homage to the past, the place from whence I came, and to be at peace with it. 

Oh yes, and as some of you pointed out, it would be a CAL not a KAL! (Silly me!)  Cecily, the designer of the bag will be hosting a CAL soon. The pattern is in the Spring IC.  Hook on!


Random Acts

The first random act for the day is to apologize for my lack of sensitivity by bragging about our many flowers, blooming trees, green grass and bare toes.  I understand it will be some time before this condition, the short lived condition called spring, finds it way East.  What I really would like to say is...neener, neener and I DO know that I'll pay dearly for that slip of the tongue.

Boomerangtriedtorunbuticaughtitandw 2by2ribsockisqucklygrowingandeasyto The ball winder wars were won by moi…sorta...two big and three smaller balls, as the mess was in the middle.  Let's hope it was a random skein and not a consistant problem with this brand.  The yarn, Fiesta Boomerang, was quickly wrangled into submission, put on the needles, and a very squooshy, fun to knit sock begun.  This should be a great project for SnB nights…big yarn, easy to see and a simple design, too.

Bloominfeetpalpackageincludedinonly

As a not so random act of kindness, my Bloomin' Feet pals package was sent out on Saturday and I added a few goodies to the box.  Included inside; a box of Utah-made chocolates, a skein of Ewe-tah grrl Karen's Sleeping Dragon Yarn (appropriately named Spring Fling), and a special surprise…shhhhh, don't tell.  I used Ewe-tah grrl, Teri's Baby Sock Pattern and it worked up quickly. Aren't they cute!? (There was baaarely enough yarn for the pair...whew.)

As I was randomly reading blogs I was brought up short by the Larger than Life Tote. I feel I am too young to be retro (at least that’s what I’m telling myself). My first dip into a yarny craft was a crocheted granny square vest, way back in1972. (Ack!!)  In order to show you the offending fashion item, I took a tour around Stichy's blog. I knew I'd find what I was looking for and you can see it here. (Oh no! I'm not retro, I'm kitch!)  My vest was red, white and blue (Cliché? At least it wasn't gold and olive green.) and it was the same style as the man's vest (total kitch...sob). To make matters worse I made a couple of them and wore them often!  Claudia, is that enough of a fashion faux pah for you? Yes, in my defense, it was 1972 and everyone was doing it wearing them.

Grannysquarebaghasjustbegunitsjourn

Here I am, all these years later (ack!), starting a granny square tote bag (can I randomly blame Lynne?).  I can’t help it…I do think it’s very cool and retro looking and it IS better than crocketing a vest, right?  (Sheesh…I guess I’m NOT too young to be retro.)  The yarn is Louet Gems Sport and I picked up just a few colors....more to be added later.  Anyone else want to join in the fun!?  Leah and Lynne might be starting a KAL and I'd like some company in my insanity. It looks like we're in good company