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June 2012
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August 2012

One of Many

Nearly 5,000 knitters have made, or are in the process of making, Color Affection by Veera Välimäki. To my mind, the pattern has been popular because it can be knit in a multitude of color combinations, as well as a veritable mountain of yarn choices. The knitter is in charge and can create a simply, comfortable, suitable wrap to match their style. Genius.


My first attempt at knitting Color Affecton was a fail, as the silk yarn was unyielding and uncomfortable.  Many of my friends advised I should listen to my inner voice and I realizing they were right. The silk was frogged and more suitable yarn ordered from Vicki's new company Make.Do. Vicki's eye for color is informed by her years of photographic experience, as well as enhanced by her innate talent. The yarn she dyed is perfect in color and, with her added variations of tints and tones, exactly what I wanted.


The pattern is fairly straight forward as long as you read it carefully.  Some people have worried about the edge being too tight and some about it being too loose.  In my usual fashion, I gave it no thought and just jumped in. My knitting is on the tighter side of a gauge, which lead me to added a YO between the first two stitches. The YO was then dropped on the next row, which kept the edge from becoming firm and without give. As far as I'm concerned, doing so was the right thing for my shawl, my yarn, and my style. YMMV


Together the yarn and pattern create a coziness of a perfect cool weather into winter wrap. Color Affection, my Color Affection, will ensure I'll be wrapped in warmth and luxury for many winters to come.

Color me happy!

And Even More Weekending


Long weekends can be so refreshing and magical.  If I ran the world weekends would be at least 3 days, but having four days to do as I wished was quite heavenly. If you look closely you may catch sight of the hawk, that lives in the trees near the garden, and soars over our neighborhood.

Working in the garden, harvesting the healthy and delicious veggies, has given us a bumper crop of goodness. I'm rather charmed by the teepee Smith built for the pole beans.


We've shared much of our garden produce, because there is no way we can eat it all. Cheryl invited us to dinner and we brought along freshly harvested potatoes, which she turned into roasted potato stacks. Easy to make, easy to eat, oh my, they were good.

Since I've been holding out and not sharing my latest finished shawls, Cheryl's hubby, aka "The Pontiff", and my Smith were good sports and showed them off to maximum effect. Smith is wearing Snow Drops and Snap Peas and The Pontiff is the delighted model of Live Oak.

When Ravelry received their second order of the commemorative bags (2,000,000 Ravelrers and 5 years!), I had to order one. It arrived the same day as surprise package from Kym! (You should check out her on-going travelogue.) The little blue flower attached is from Estonia.


The skies this weekend had me in their thrall. Thunderstorms brewed on the horizon and an hour later there would be a drenching rain. The storm would last only minutes and then rush across the mountains leaving dry air in its wake.

Summer is far from over (much to the chagrin of many of you) and I'm going to enjoy its charms as long as I can.If only every weekend could be this delightful, but now it's back to the workweek (3 days is better than 5) and the bustle of every day life.



When Tuesday is a holiday, it's a good idea to take Monday off and extend the celebration. That's just what I'm doing, as I am much in need of a four day weekend.

Early Sunday morning I could see the sky starting to color. Lately, beautiful sunrises have been few and far between and, with the pink tinge in the sky, I knew today could hold a golden opportunity.I jumped out of bed, made a quick stop for the camera, and hightailed it out the door. The sky was full of pink clouds and tints of golden fire. After I'd absorbed the morning light and snapped a few pictures, I turned to head back inside. In the moisture of the atmosphere, I spotted a rainbow just as it was trying to form. It was a glorious morning!


Even with this humid start to the day, it ended up being hot and dry.

Weekending with Amanda of Habit of Being

Cast On, Bind Off Book Winner

A 110 knitters were in the running for the book, Cast On, Bind Off!  I let the random number generator (Smith) pick the winning number, which corresponded to Lesley's comment. Lesley has responded and her info has been forwarded to Storey Publishing. They will take it from there. Thank you to everyone who commented. There are other chances to win if you follow the tour. Everyday until the end of the month you will have a chance to win. It's worth the purchase, even if you don't win a copy.

Encourage your fellow knitters to try something new rather than tell them they are  "doing it wrong". There is no "wrong" way to knit, no wrong way to cast on. There are numerous ways to knit and when sitting around with a group you may see as many variations as you see knitters. Encouraging each other is a great way to learn.

The Old Norwegian maybe the same as the German Twisted many of you mentioned.  Some of the cast on or bind off techniques in the book had different, or new (to me), names.

Many, if not most of us, use the same cast on for everything. It is well worth the effort to learn, and use, the best possible cast on for your knitted accomplishment.  Be fearless. What's the worst that could happen?

I promise to share some of my finished shawls this week. Rather than take care of the blog I have been reading, knitting (a little) and spending time on the patio. 

Cast On Book Tour

Many of you could not see the picture of the Basic Cast On page in Cast On, Bind Off.  I took this picture instead of using the image from the book in the hopes everyone could see it. Thank you for your many comments, but the contest is not over until midnight tonight. If you're a lurker, please don't hesitate to comment. Just go for it! Let me know how many cast on techniques you know and use.


Please, comment on Wednesday's post. If you've have already commented you're in the running, whether you could see the picture or not.

In the Beginning

Welcome, to new friends coming from the Storey Publishing book tour! It is my pleasure to be part of the tour and to introduce you to a fabulous new knitting reference book, "Cast On, Bind Off" by Leslie Ann Bestor. 

Excerpted from Cast On, Bind Off © Leslie Ann Bestor, photography © John Polak used with permission from Storey Publishing

As I was reading through Cast On, Bind Off, I was thrilled to see the first section of "Basic Cast Ons" and a clear picture of nine great basics.  A knitter who knows a few good cast on techniques will have the knowledge needed to make the right choice when starting a project.  This page offers a varied list of the techniques a knitter can easily learn for the first step of a project.

Basic Cast On
Excerpted from Cast On, Bind Off © Leslie Ann Bestor, photography © John Polak used with permission from Storey Publishing

Each technique has its own page, which lists the characteristics and uses, along with a clear series of pictures and easy to follow instructions.  A big plus is the spiral binding, which means the book will stay open (halleluiah!) while you try your hand learning a new cast on.


I've taken the book along when knitting in public and friends have been able to learn their desired cast on (or bind off) by following the instructions laid out on the page.

This little book puts at a knitters fingertips, the necessary tools to make an informed choice. When knitting a sock you might try a cast on with a little stretch, like the Old Norwegian, or when starting a sweater, a clean, stable edge may be desirable and the Cable Cast on will fit the bill.  Cast On, Bind Off is a great compilation of techniques that will help any knitter make the first step a perfect beginning.

I'm keeping my copy, because there are many new to me techniques I'd like to learn, but you can win a copy from Storey Publishing by answering a question in the comments:

How many of the cast on techniques listed on the page pictured above do you know and use?  

I'll pick a ramdon winner on Friday July 13th (a great day, don't you think?) and announce the winner sometime over the weekend. Thank you for stopping by!

Follow the Tour!

7/9         Picnic Knits
7/10       Knit and Tonic
7/11       Zeneedle
7/12       Rambling Designs
7/13       Rambling Designs (Leslie Ann, guest post)
7/14       Neo Knits
7/15       Knit & Nosh
7/16       Knitting at Large
7/17       Rebecca Danger
7/18       Lapdog Creations
7/19       Nutmeg Knitter
7/20       Yarnagogo
7/21       Weekend Knitter
7/22       knitgrrl
7/23       It's a Purl, Man
7/24       Whip Up
7/25       Knitspot
7/26       Under the Humble Moon
7/27       Knitting Daily
7/28       Knitting School Dropout
7/29       Hugs for Your Head
7/30       The Knit Girllls

Half Way


July 1st was a bit of a hazy day, as many of our days have been, although the air is full of smoke rather than haze. The fires surrounding the SLC valley have not been as devastating as the fires in Colorado, nor have they been as rampant. We have been fortunate.


The poor Sky Skarf does not appear to be quite so lucky as it has become a caricature of itself. It is only about 16" long, as more ends than beginnings, and it will never grow up to  be more than a schmatta. It's okay, however, as it's a sampler of the 2012 sky and that means it will always be dear to me.

Hey, it's Monday.

Always a Doosy

Well, I'm here to confess (again) that I made a major screw up with my knitting. Did you wonder why Color Affection was taking so long, why she had not made an appearance on the blog for a lo-ong time? Well, generally, that means a screw up. Maybe it's a flaw in my character, or maybe it's just a lackadaisical attitude, but if I can screw up my knitting, usually by not paying attention, I will. It's the just way I roll.

I've had a great time knitting Color Affection. It's been grand knitting the stripes, watching the colors change, and feeling Vicki's gorgeous yarn slip through my fingers. Why would I take the time to read the pattern when I'm having such a great time?  I know, it's silly, and I thought I knew where I was going but, apparently, I didn't.

A week ago, I took the shawl to SnB, as I was very close to finishing the stripes. I wanted my friends to see how far I'd come but, while showing the shawl to Cheryl she looked at me and said, "You don't knit stripes until you run out of stitches, you only knit 16 sets." We decided to look through the pattern and sure enough... I sat there stunned.

Right then and there I took the shawl off the needles, counted the rows, and found I had only knit three sets of 3 stripes too many (which is a lot of knitting). However, it IS only knitting, nothing bad happened and ripping back didn't take long. Putting everything back on the needles, and getting back on track didn't take all that long, either. By the time we left SnB that night I had knit three rows of the border completed.  I know there will be more mess ups in my future and that's okay. It is the process. 

Enjoy your 4th of July Holiday!!

It's That Time of Year


Smith harvested the garlic this weekend. A full month early! Five large bags full...about 400 heads. Of garlic. They're beautiful! And large! SO tasty, very mild, as garlic needs to dry in order for the flavor to build.


We've roasted the heads whole, roasted individual cloves on the grill (mixed with other veggies), and sauteed tiny slices with spinach and kale.  There isn't a vampire within a hundred miles and we doubt there will be for the next year.