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March 2009
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May 2009

Let Me Divert Your Attention....

Look! Over there....

Soap operas are not something I've ever followed, but I have enjoyed Stephanie's romantic story inspired by her love of General Hospital. Every Friday she's been publishing an episode and, let me tell you, she knows how to build suspense and intrigue. Start here with Chapter 1 and get up to speed (she's written 4 chapters) before the next installment is publish (likely tomorrow).

Kirsten has a new shawl pattern available on her blog or on RavleryRav_linkredyarnball. I've been watching for it's publication as it is a perfect way to use fingering yarn that's hanging around the stash. I'll be rifling through to find the perfect pairing of colors as soon as my head is above the fray again.

Barb is a very good shepherd to her flock of cormo sheep. It's lambing season and I guarantee you can watch every video she posts and never get tired of the cute, funny, and charming lambs bouncing around her farm.

Running Mode

When you spend 3 full days in which you are completely oblivious to reality, while enjoying friends, laughter, food, knitting, along with fun times, getting back to reality sucks. Now life is on catch up mode.


Jessalusbagwithbirdsopen  Jessalusbagwithbirds

While I was having a good time with my gang o'grrls, the gift I won in Jessa Lu's comment contest arrived. I've only carried the bag a few days and already its received numerous compliments.  Knit friends noticed right away and they all say how beautifully made it is. Thank you, Jessa Lu! The bag is beautifully made and I'm going to enjoy using it. She has many different fabrics and colors in her Etsy shop and you know you'd love to have one for yourself, right?   Isn't her signature bee charm darling?

Sugar Pink


The next sweater finally stepped to fore and demanded attention. I'd been dragging my feet, hesitant for no real reason and she was right to assert herself as it was high time to take on Sweater #6. Summer Tweed is a little hard on the hands, but it makes a comfortable, easy to wear sweater.  Chamomile has been one of my most favored, most oft worn sweaters and I hope Harmony will turn out to be as versatile.


Several friends will surely give me she-ite for the color, the lovely springy Eastery egg, sugar pink, but I love it, and I'll wear it and they'll be envious of my beauty. **cough**  The truth is this color isn't everyone's cup a tea, but I love it and I'll love wearing it. Hopefully, I'll love knitting the pattern, too. I've only put in a few minutes of knitting time, but I can tell the lace edge (this is NOT a peplum) is going to be very pretty. (Claudia, are you cringing out loud?)

HarmonyRav_linkredyarnball will take me half way through the yearly goal of twelve fabulous sweaters. (Maybe I should cross off that fabulous because of the Liesl disaster, but if things stay on track I could knit one or two over the goal and still have twelve fabulous sweaters.)  While I drag my feet a bit between sweater projects, sweater mojo has always been willingly at hand.

Two blog friends need all of Blogland to step up and spread the word.  Claudia isn't quite ready to ask for donations for her annual MS ride, but she is putting out the call for prizes.

Teyani's choral group has been invited to sing at Carnagie Hall!  It's such a fabulous honor and they need to raise funds to make this dream come true.  You can help and Teyani has come fabulous prises as incentives. Do what you can for both endeavors.  Blogland is so generous and so good at making dreams come true for our friends.

There may not be much knitting going on this weekend. As you may have heard, Ms. Norma arrives today and we have a whirlwind weekend of fun planned. When Norma comes to town, there isn't much sitting around knitting time. There is plenty of time eating, drinking and partying time, however. I'm not sure when I'll be back as we have plans until Tuesday morning.  See you on the flip!!

Project Spectrum North ~ A Wrap

Cookie thought my Sojo Mojo may have stopped by her place for a brief visit, but I don't think the Mojo who spent time with her was mine. My Mojo was firmly planted by my side this week and he wouldn't allow any other project to come between us. I spent the whole time in Project Monotony Monogamy, a rarely visited place, and for once it felt right.  I thank SM for the experience.  We made a beautiful pair of socks together, a pair I consider sock number one of the "sock stash season", socks that are knit and stashed away until fall.


It is sometimes a challenge to find appropriate items to knit, spin, and photograph for Project Spectrum, but everything came together easily for PS North. The yarns were not only green, but as luck would have it, the colorways were named appropriately, too.

My creation

Sock – MonkeyRav_linkredyarnball in STR - Rain Forest Jasper
Shawl – Fountain PenRav_linkredyarnball in Mini-Maiden -Peridot
Photo -Stones and Snow in the Zen Garden
Handspun – 2 ply fingering Wooly Wonka -Kelp

NORTH (March/April)
Color: Green
Material: Stones/Gems/Rocks
Season: Winter
Element: Earth

Now, where's that sweater yarn?

Me and My Emmylou

After a large project is finished I go through a "let down" period. It doesn't matter if the project was a success or not, although the "let down" period is longer after a good outcome.  After Liesl I just couldn't find footing to move on even though the next sweater (and the next) was ready to go. The feeling made me question if it was right "next sweater" (however, that's another story).  In any case, during project "let down", I turned to spinning and sock knitting. The hands can't be idle.

Whether knitting or not, spinning has been a nice compliment to sweater addiction and I've spent much of my spare time with Emmylou, my Lendrum DT spinning wheel.

Neither picture is quite right, but they should give you an idea of how pretty the blue, green coloway is.
The fiber was Spirit Trail's superwash BFL from Jennifer's Fiber Club.  It was such a wonderful fiber to spin and didn't feel in the least like superwash.  It wasn't slippery or squeaky and it was a joy to spin.  I could have used a little more as I ended up with only 222 yds of 3-ply sock weight. Perhaps the shortage is due to the yarn being more tightly spun, both in singles and plying, than I normally do. It is nicely balanced and will wear very well, however.  I'll be looking for another color to spin as a compliment. 

Not to be daunted by low yarndage, I jumped right into spinning another fiber club offering from Funky Carolina. (Must meet the challenge for more yarndage.)  This is also a superwash in the Twisted Hummingbird colorway. Dont' you love that name?!  The colors  are wonderful to watch as they run between my fingers and the fiber spins nicely (and quite finely, too). I enjoy clubs because they challenge my color sense.
The club fibers are also fun to spin as a break from longer term projects.  Anne had a beautiful batch of alpaca/charred bamboo a few months back that was too beautiful to pass up.  I'm slowly filling a bobbin with fine singles in the hopes I can make a big beautiful shawl or stole.  Pattern to be determined when yarndage is known.  In the mean time, spinning this is pure heaven.  I love the color (shades of gray), the fiber and the beautiful single. Six oz. will be divided between two bobbins to make a fingering weight 2 ply yarn...a gray tweed with a bit of sparkle, fingering weight.


Cayenne, a local spinner, recently blogged about spindle spinning and I realized I had been carrying around the same style of spindle, a Maureen's Mjolinar , but had rarely put it into action. Her post reminded me how much I enjoyed the process of spindling and how much I'd like to get back to it. The day before, in another post, she shared the beautiful professional pictures she'd had taken while spinning in her yard. The pictures have a vintage feel and I thought you'd enjoy seeing them.

The Liesl Dilemma

It's a little difficult to blog about something you've made but don't like very much.  The difficulty isn't the pattern, it's the knitter and the choices made.  With Liesl, what you see is what you get.  The neck determines the size and fit...what you have in the end is determined at the starting point.  If you want a larger sweater, one that buttons in the front, you must make a wide neck. If you make a smaller neck you'll end up with an open front.  That's what the pattern pictures show and that's what you get. 

Liesl is cute, I'll give her that, but I'm not cute, not into cute and because of the way she fits, I'm constantly pulling, adjusting and just feel funny wearing her.
You can see in the back view how the sleeves are small, tight and pull uncomfortably across my back when I move or lift my arms.  This style isn't suited to someone with square shoulders and it was a poor choice of pattern for me on many levels, even if it is cute.

This is the classic case of "knitter, know thy pattern, thy limits and thy style".  Liesl was quickly knit, fun to knit and certainly has charm.  Its charm is suited to someone younger with a different body type.  I do like the way LIesl looks from the back if I'm not moving around. 
A knitter has several choices to consider with Liesl when determining fit and style. Make your choices based on use and body type, think through what you want from this sweater, and you'll be much happier with the end result.

Pattern: Liesl by Ysolda
Yarn: Debbie Bliss Eco Cotton – 7 balls 613 Red
Size: 37 Low Neckline
Time to Knit: April 10-16, 2009
Sweater #5 for NaKniSweMoDo

The Hook with Socks

Usually there are four different projects on my needles, but at this time I feel more than complete with only 2 things to knit and one big hooking project.


While hooking I seem to move my whole arm and shoulder in a way that causes soreness. I need to concentrate and figure out how to avoid whatever it is I’m doing and nip this aggravating problem in the bud. I'll take the process slowly and carefully so I can get to the finish without injury. I'm blaming the big hook and tough yarn. The pads will keep fingers from burning, however, which is the point.

The hooking has only begun, and would you believe, I'm already dreaming of making Babette….in the future…after resting my sore shoulder…someday…not right now…(holy cow). We'll see if that desire stays after making 10 of the Tumbledown pads (hot pads need to be double thick), as you can see I have 8 more to go. It has been fun to play with color and I am enjoying the hooking process. But, something else, something bigger? Hmm.....

There is no rush to start the next sweater and maybe that's naive, and perhaps smug, but the need to finish this pair of Monkey's is strong.  It feels right to enjoy the simple knitting, familiar knitting of yet another Monkey. The last Monkey was well over a year ago, but the pattern is forever etched on my brain...this is Monkey number 5, after all.  The other day a friend said I had OKD not OCD...I'm inclined to agree.


Enjoy your weekend...we're hoping to see the sun and feel its warmth!! No more snow!