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October 2007
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December 2007

NaKniSweBloPoMo Fini!

Headoverheelsforscoop

I've fallen head over heels for Scoop!

Scoopfullbodyshoy_2 Scoopfromtheback_3 Scoopfavoritesweater

This was a fun, fast, classic knit that went together so smoothly, so nicely and I'd love to knit a second one, right now!  I've been wearing this sweater almost everyday since she crossed the finish line.  The fabric, the fit, the warmth, and style, are to live for. She's the perfect, dress up, dress down, always lookin' good sweater.  If I ever knit with Peace Fleece again you can bet it'll get the rough treatment.  It softened wonderfully and the itch factor vanished!

Scoopbuttonedandlookingood
Scoop Pattern: Scoop du Jour by ChicKnits
Yarn: 6 skeins Peace Fleece, Blueberry Borscht
Size: 40
Needles:  As per pattern 5-8 Addi Turbo
KALs: NaKniSweBloPoMoFo
Time to Knit: November 1- November 22, 2007
Modifications:  Lengthened body and sleeves 2"

Grrlsjustwannahavefuntoo

Love it!!

NaKniSweBloPoMoFo wasn't too bad, but I think I'll take it easy in December.  Have a good weekend!


Just One Pair

Firstwintermorningindecember

A peak out the window at 0'dark thirty revealed a winter wonderland. It was icy and cold, but there was not as much snow as we'd hoped to see. A little later it started to snow again, just a few flurries, with a very wintry chill. By early afternoon the sun popped through the clouds and brought the big ol' blue sky out to play.  Cold it is, but we do have snow and it is pretty!  (There's that pretty thing again.) You can see the brown isn't quite covered with the first few inches of snow.

Blueskylaterintheday

While it may be cold, I'm a knitter and I can knit warm coverings for my hands, head, feet and more.  Sometimes I do think charity knitting can be a bit much. Knitting take so much time (we're all short on time) and many of us are attached to what we make in that "it's just too nice to give away" kind of way. It's true, you can buy the needed items to keep children warm, but by giving just one pair of mittens worth of time, you are giving yourself a wonderful gift...the gift of being selfless.

Mittenforsoaringeagles

Rachel is a little worried the Soaring Eagles project will run short of gifts for the children...children who are in need of warm hands and toes.  KUO officially ends tomorrow, but that doesn't mean you need to stop knitting.  Just one pair of mittens (they go very quick, just ask Cheryl) or a quick pair of slippers will make a child very happy this Christmas. Rachel will take donations until December 17th.  Please let her know you'll be sending a pair...she's counting on us and so are the kids!  For this mitten I'm using leftover yarn from my Ribby Pulli and Elizabeth D.'s mitten pattern.  It's going very quickly (now that I've started) and I hope to make a couple more pair. 

Tomorrow is the last day of NaKniSweBloPoMoFo! It's been so much fun because of all of the comments and because of the Mofo Grrls.  Hopefully TeresaC and Sandy will continue to post on a regular basis...I'll miss them too much if not!

Yes, yes, yes...Scoop makes her debut tomorrow. Thanks for hanging around and for the support to make it through...you all rock!


Scoop du Blueberries Finishing Details

Scout de Jour was finished just minutes before we left to have Thanksgiving Dinner with Anne's family.   I didn't rush, didn't push just so I could wear it, it just happened that way.  The perfect buttons were found on Wednesday and the perfect buttonholes executed on Thursday.   

I know you're just dying  to see the finished project, but every time I knit a sweater I'm asked how I get them to fit...so, don't you want to know my secret?  I'm also going to share with you how to make a good button band the first time.  I'm no expert, it's just that I really don't like doing things twice, if I can avoid it at all.  My methods aren't fool proof, but they will improve your success rate.

Scoopswatchandbeginning_2 First, do the gauge thing folks...just do it.  Knit a 4 to 6 inch square and treat it the way you would your finished sweater.  I like to wash my sweaters on delicate, cold water, in the washer and lay them flat to dry.  That's what I do with all swatches.  It tells me how a yarn will react and helps in judging what size to knit.  Knitting math is as easy as basic math...you can do it, if I can, you can. 

Take your favorite fitting piece of clothing and measure it.  That will give you a good idea of what size sweater to knit.  Claudia used an already finished sweater as a template when she knit Thermal...that's a perfect way to insure your sweater will fit. While knitting I check my gauge often, to make sure the stresses of life (or the extra relaxing times) aren't taking a toll. I also try the pieces on if I can.  Every piece is measured when finished and, I block as I go, which is a good way to to make sure all pieces are the size they should be.  Measure, measure, measure...it can't be done too often.  Count rows to make sure you sleeves, and the pieces of the body are the same length, so that everything will sew together smoothly.  All in all, that's pretty basic knitting advise...Knitting 101.

Buttonsandbuttonholeonscoop_2

(I deleted my math as several people let me know it was wrong. It was messed it up...I can't do math, evidently...but, some how I did get the right number of stitches picked up and the sweater looks great.)

The way I placed the buttonholes is a little less scientific. One button is in the neck band and the last button is 2" from the bottom edge.  With the 2x2 rib it was easy to space the rest by counting the ribs. I can't tell you how much I love this sweater, but I'll try (on Friday). Nancie Wiseman's book, Finishing Techniques, has been my go to book when it comes to finishing details and her one row buttonholes can't be beat.  Don't skimp on knowledge when it comes to doing a good job of knitting and finishing.  That's Basic Knitting Advice, Knitting 101.


Finishing Flurries and WIPs

The good weather peoples have predicted the possibility of flurries this afternoon.  Fingers are crossed (and toes, too!) that this is the first of many storms to come to our neck of the woods.

As a way to offer help, living by example if you will, I have created my own flurries...a flurry of finished project (and the start of a few new, too).  Thank you for your comments on the Pink Portrait. It's a fun scarf to wear and I love, love, love it. 

Another FO that I'm completely in love with (as I am with ALL the FOs this week) is Anne's Ceilidh Lace Socks from Wooly Wonka. The yarn is a bamboo/superwash wool and it has a luminescence to it. Anne's dye job adds another layer of luminescence and is aptly named, Seashells.  Aren't they as pretty as can be. (I'm all about pretty this week.) 

Prettylaceofceilidhsocks_2

(I've been going to the gym after work and getting home after the good light is gone, so sadly, the picture isn't that great.)

Catbirdbeaverslideworested Thursday morning I decided to reorganize the stash.  There were a few new yarns to put away and it felt like the right time to give the old stash a good petting.   I was a bit worried there would be need to add an extra bin (I have 5), but as it turned out everything fit perfectly.  The sock yarn was moved into the largest bin (no more sock yarn!), but with the removal of the Blueberry Borscht Peace Fleece, I had room in the sweater bin for some new Beaverslide. 'Catbird' just had to come and live with me after Cara posted about her new sweater.  It's in marination stage.

Cornflowerblueapplepieforgloves While diving through the stash I found a very pretty Apple Pie in Cornflower Blue and decided to use it for Véronik's Long Gloves from Knitting Classic Style.  Its time for a change of pace from sock knitting and blue gloves will be so bright and happy in the dead of winter.

Over the long weekend I did get a good start on my new favorite project, the Logan River Wrap from Interweave Knits Winter 2007 (designed by Mim). The yarn is Queensland Kathmandu Aran and it is so soft and luxurious. After knitting up the first ball I decided to make my wrap a bit longer and ordered two more balls for a nice long wrap (most of you won't need to do this, me thinks). This pattern is very, very easy to read, easy to knit and loads of fun. It's hard to put down, hard to work on anything else, as it's such easy, rewarding knitting.  Dropping a stitch to create the undulating water rapid is a blast and just watching the pattern form is addicting.  I predict another quick knit and another finish in the near future.

Loganriverwrapinkathmandu


Pretty In Pink

It was such a wonderful weekend and even while enjoying, savoring, and reveling in every minute, time did not slow down.  How can it be Monday?  The weekend, while seeming to fly by, was very productive and there will be much to show for this last week of NaKniSweBloPoMoFo.  The next 5 days will be used to show everything off, with the Piece d'resistance on Friday...so, please stick around for the big finale!

Today's finished project is the sweet, pretty and very classic Portrait Scarf by Véronik Avery. Right from the first sighting of this scarf, I knew I had to make it and, when I saw Anne's beautiful mohair/silk at the Great Basin Fiber Fair, I knew it was the perfect yarn.  This soft, silky, luscious beauty has adorned my neck all week. Classiccabledsweaterfromcalvin_2

What better way to show if off than a classic Calvin Klein, the Cable Cardigan from Vogue Knitting.  This sweater was knit in 1988 or 1989 in a yarn called Knitaly (if memory serves) and it weighs a ton!  This sweater is big, as clothes in the 80s were, and yet, it's still wearable, warm and classic (don't you think so?).  It was knit at a time I didn't want to do my own finishing, so the LYS sewed it together and machine knit the front bands.  The buttonholes are also machine (sewing machine) made. Few people believe me when I say I knit this sweater by hand (except that band).  Knitting 8 stitches in 1x1 rib for 800 feet just didn't sound fun (and it still doesn't!).  Back in 1988 I could see this sweater being worn for years (one reason I went to all the trouble), with the elbows worn through and suede patches covering the holes.  Today, I don't think the yarn will ever wear through...its more like steel...heavy and strong.

Classiccalvinwithclassicveronik Veryhandsomecarfandsweater

Anyway, back to the scarf.  It's fun to wear, very pretty, thus it makes me feel pretty.  It's also warm and soft.  Count me a very happy knitter.

Prettyinpinkportraitscarffromvero_2

Pattern: Mohair Portrait Scarf from Knitting Classic Style  by Véronik Avery
Yarn: Kid Mohair and Silk – American Beauty by Wooly Wonka Fibers
Needle: Addi circular size 6
Time to Knit: 10-03-07 – 11-16-07
Pattern calls for DPNs, but circulars made the knitting much more fun.


Hi! I'm Moxie!

Dear Mom's Readers,

You won't believe the fabulous day I had on Thursday.  Mom got up early, like she always does, and fed me, made coffee and then took a sweet treat back to bed to share with dad.  They gave me a little taste, too.  While dad read the paper I got to sleep on his lap and he gave me lots of pets, too.

Later when mom was working on her new cardi (whatever that is) I jumped into her lap and made her pet me.  She's been spending way too much time with that thing lately.  She laughed and gave me lots of pets while I tried to smother it.
Moxiedidntwantmetosewhewantspets

However, it wasn't long before she pulled it out from under me and started to work on it again. That was even better as I got to snuggle up under it and stay toasty warm.  It was one of the best mornings ever.
Andthenhegotcomfortable

Later that afternoon they went away for a few hours and I got to catch up on my sleep...it's exhausting when they are home.  They came back just in time for us to go to bed.  I'm the luckiest dog in the world! 


Eye Candy - All About Me

I will not be shopping today with the hoards of maniacs in the malls (nor on-line for that matter). I'll be at home knitting, spinning, just doing as I wish.  Poor Smith will be working in the afternoon, but at least we can have breakfast together.  It's very cold outside, but Moxie and I might just go to The Farm and walk off the delightful dinner Anne made yesterday.  You can't believe how delicious the pie was...think apples, cranberries, walnuts and whiskey!   Oh my! Anne you must share that recipe.

For the picture today I'd like to show my new favorite toy, purchased last week.  Carole was using one when she visited in September and Miriam came to SnB last Tuesday with one.  I'd been trying to stay away, but when I saw the brown and turquoise combo...I just couldn't resist. 

Formenewhaikubagknitting

This is one sturdy, yet pretty, bag and it holds all my crap very nicely...pockets, oh pockets how I love you. Scout's service is superb and I'm so pleased to finally be carrying my own Haiku Bag. (Merry early Christmaskah to me.)


Giving Thanks

Here I thought I'd dread posting on Thanksgiving, but with the MoFo Sistahs  in this with me...it's not so bad! The MoFo's are Norma, TeresaC, Sandy, Vicki, and Anne...they all crack me up, totally crack me up.  Terry's random post is a classic and Norma has 'cheesecake' on her blog today...no really!   I must say how thankful I am and fortunate too, to have such funny (first wrote fanny!), caring and goofy friends.

I'm also thankful for all of you who come by daily to read, so thankful that many of you take the time to comment.  The connections made with friends near and far bring so much joy to my life. I am thankful for all that you have shared, all that you have taught me over the years and, even thankful for all you expect from me. 

Mountainisnowless

It's darn damn cold here and the irony, the cruelty of it is...there is NO SNOW...none.  Even people who normally hate snow are worried and anxious that we have none.  It is a worry, a big worry.  But, today I'm going to enjoy a day of relaxation, knitting mittens for KUTO and eating Thanksgiving dinner (thankfully) at Anne's.   

Have an enjoyable day!!  Happy Thanksgivings to you all!


Scoop - The Finishing Touches

Blueberryscooblocking Sunday, while pinning the body pieces of Scoop to the floor, I noticed a glaring error.  The back neck 'scoop' was as deep as the front neck 'scoop' and I knew that just couldn't be true.  Upon inspection of the written pattern, the error of my ways became clear...the extra two inches of the body length had not been added into my calculations before starting the neckline.  That meant the a reknit!  I had just given the sweater a good dunking, with agitation, in order to fuzz up the finish and help the yarn blossom to its maximum.  Would it be possible to pull back and reknit? Would the yarn be felted together? 

Blueberryscoopyarnreadytofix After allowing it to dry thoroughly, I cut off the shoulders (much easier than trying to rip back) and raveled until just below the neckline.  The yarn was fluffy, slightly fulled, but not felted to itself....thank goddess!  However, I knew the problem would come in reknitting the area with yarn that hadn't been 'processed'  for maximum bloomability.  To that end, I wound off what remained of a ball onto my niddy noddy, tied the skein in several places, and proceeded to dunk it in a bath of hot water and soap. I stirred the waters wildly for a minute or two and checked the yarn.  It was perfect and looked very much like the finished fabric. 

Backlooksfinewithnewyarn Monday evening I began reknitting, found the yarn worked well and left no line of demarcation.  What a relief! The neck was finished quickly, the sweater pieces sewn together and the front plackets begun.  The photo shoot should happen right on schedule...if I can find buttons! I forgot about buttons!

Enjoy your Thanksgiving!  I'll be back tomorrow if you want to stop by...it is NaKniSweBloPoMoFo, ya know!?