Holiday Knitting

The long Holiday weekend was (mostly) spend in quiet pursuits, that is excluding the very loud previews of movies that came before a not quite as loud Sherlock Holmes.  The movie was a hit with our group of friends. 


With four days off it was nice to spend time reading, knitting, walking, and chatting with Smith.  While I should be wishing for snow (and at times I do), I've enjoyed the the sun streaming through the window, as it makes my room warm and cozy, the perfect place to sit and knit.


Since I seem to be averse to large knitting projects, I decided to have some fun and knit an interesting cowl. Brooklyn Tweed's Setzer fit the bill with its short row shaping. Actually, it wasn't until after I'd perused the pattern that I learned the shaping was done with short rows.  However, short rows don't scare me...they are not new to my knitting repertoire. I do admit to having trouble with execution, but as Susan pointed out, when I went to her for help, I just needed to count my stitches. Yes, this was a very "DUH" moment, but from then on the cowl went smoothly...that is until I ran out of yarn.


When I started the project I knew I'd be close on yardage, but (isn't there always a "but" with me?) I did it anyway, thinking I'd get away with it (hahaha), or I'd only be a couple of rows short, and it would be fine. But (oh yeah), it wasn't fine!  The cowl would be way to short, AND it would be obvious, as there was a whole pattern repeat to do!


Thank goddess for the stash and for the bit of Shepherd's Wool leftover from another project--a beautiful red which was just the perfect touch.  Sometimes, denial works in our favor.

But, don't count on it.

Hello (Quickly)

This week is going to be so busy and I really have no right to be playing around on the blogs (or Ravelry, or FB or anywhere else).  Thanksgiving weekend was wonderfully full of relaxing times, lots of reading, some knitting, and hanging out with friends.


The weather cooperated fully with a tiny storm on T-day, a lovely cloud display on Friday, and clear blue skies both Saturday and Sunday. 

As soon as is possible, I'll share some knitting. Photos were taken of several FO and even an eFfed O(MG).  The sweater I swore never to finish turned out "OK" and it may even see some wear.  The problems weren't caused by the sweater pattern, they were mostlycause by "moi" and my "adjustments" to the pattern.  ohwell  More later, promise.


One of my favorite patterns ever is Susan's Ragtop Mitt (available through Blazing Needles).  When life is a bit on the crazy side it helps to have an easy knit (with great yarn like MadelineTosh). 

There's so much more to say, so much more to share, but I've gotta run. Please share with me your very favorite part of the Thanksgiving weekend. My favorite thing was having free time to use just as I wanted. Now it's back to the mad dash of life!



Happy things from the weekend include:

Finishing a pair of Susan's mittsRav_linkredyarnball
Sending them a friend
Driving to Park City on clear roads
Spending a lovely evening with friends who are here to ski
Safely navigating through fog on our return trip
Staring at a bluetifully blue Sunday sky (I'll share pictures later)
Time with my wheels and feeling wool slide through my fingers
Quiet time to reconnect with Henley
Being away from the computer
Checking on Smith's poo pots
Drinking a dark chocolate latte while visiting with knitting friends
Laughing, talking about books with the same friends
Not watching the Oscars

Weekending is inspired by Amanda

It's About Time

It takes time to knit a beautiful pair of mittens.

It takes time to deal with life when it comes at you from all sides and Suzy's had more than her fair share lately.

It takes time to get two people together when the weather is cooperative, and. lately, the weather has been far from cooperative.

But, when things work like a waterclock, and everything falls into place, we get to show off how we spent our time. 

Suzy and I have new mittens!

It was a cold and sunny day, so we decided to go out and hug a tree.  We didnt care if the tree had a fungus (Smith's is turning all master gardener on us and told us it wasn't moss). The color was a spectacular backdrop for our lovely Clepsydra Mittens so we hugged away.

The yarn is Berroco Ultra Alpaca, Candied Yams and Steel Cut Oats, with black for the cuffs.  We both agreed it was fun to knit the pattern and the yarn, as the design flowed in a peaceful and easy way.


We knit our mittens independently, as there wasn't much time to get together. However, this pattern gave us hours of good entertainment and, even when we weren't knitting, we were talking about it.


We are both very happy with our lovely, warm and timeless mittens.
(The alpaca yarn we can live without.)

My mitten is Raveled hereRav_linkredyarnball, Suzy's is Raveled hereRav_linkredyarnball.

Kirsten has an eBookRav_linkredyarnball with both the Clepsydra mitten and the hat. The fun is not to be missed.

The time to knit mittens is over, thus ends Mitten Madness.

My Favorite Mitts

Many times I've dreamed of mitts long enough to cover my arm and long enough in the hand to cover my fingers and for that reason, the minute Susan brought her new creation to SnB I went crazy over it. Everyone there went crazy over it. She had a winner.


There is something about mitts, knitting and wearing them, that attracts me. They make quick, portable projects for on the go and I love the warmth on my hands and wrists, along with the freedom of uncovered fingers. Following Susan's lead I used Malabrigo Rios, a yarn I love, in Azul Profundo. Azul Profundo! How's that for a name!


Leave it to Susan to figure out how to make a well fitting mitt, with an awesome thumb, a top that can be flipped up or turned down, and a long (or short cuff). This is the mitt for all season.


Thereare too many lovely yarns in so many colors and they feed my mitt addiction.  Now, I'm asking myself the question, "Would it be silly to knit a different color mitt for every day of the week?   I might just do it anyway.


Just because you'll ask: Susan's new creation is only available at Blazing Needles (with the  purchase of yarn).

RagtopRav_linkredyarnball by Susan Lawrence
Raveled hereRav_linkredyarnball

Happy a nice long weekend, everyone!!

Out of Hand

The mighty, mini, mitts and mittens have help me recapture the fun in knitting.  Pushing to do larger project, pushing to knit for the blog had become a chore and, while there is love for what's on my needles, there is also a sense of obligation.  Getting caught up in Mitt(en) Madness has been good for my knitting psyche.

Knitting the mitt for our SnB Swap gave me a sense of accomplishment and replenished my desire to knit.  The feeling of instant gratification, of creating something so useful, beautiful, and delightful in the short term, has been the ticket. I'm ready to ride, as finishing a small, doable within days project, is addicting.


Suzy turned me onto the Woodruff mittens and we had a blast picking the yarn, knitting the mittens, and being generally silly and giggly. Usually, we're not prone to the giggles, but knitting mittens has brought out the little grrl in each of us.  Through our silliness, we complained about the complicated nature of the twist and cables but, we knew they'd be worth the effort, and they were!  Tahki Donegal Tweed, is sturdy, warm, cozy and deliciously tweedy. 

While knitting the complicated mittens I had an easier project to turn to, if needed. Cheryl was unable to attend our SnB Swap and, to make matters worse, while she was away her Barbies made trouble.  I felt she needed something to sooth the sadness and ache of missing the grrlfriend fun.


Thanksgiving Day Mitts had just the right amount of cabling to be interesting.  The yarn is the same as she used for her Brioche Hood Hat and it was so soft, silky and squishy.  I shortened the hand by 10 rows and added rows around the thumb opening. Cheryl was very happy and knitting them for her filled a place in my heart.

The mitten madness must continue, as it's brought me so much joy. Suzy and I have found a new object of our obsession, so stay tuned.

Extension Ends

Summer's wonderful extension ended Sunday afternoon, as wind and clouds took over the sky. My last two weekends were full of sun, so much so I ended up with fever blisters on my lips. This is not a complaint, as they were dealt with forthwith (I have my ways), and only a tiny spot marred my face. With a face like mine, it's no biggy, heh.  There is a slight change in the leaves on the valley floor, as this weeks weather, finally, marks a change to fall.


Friday afternoon I had this years last pedicure with color. The comment by the technician that I must be a gardener made me laugh right out loud. (Oh my, the dirt that must have been crusted in the crevasses of my toenails!) I promised the next time they would be easier to clean. The happy orange on my toes made the weekend all the better, but the next time they will be sans polish, as my toes do not like the cold one little bit. 


The past week was so crazy busy I just couldn't get to my needles as often as I like, but I did finish Suzy's Leafy Mitts. They were quick, fun, and easy to knit. Suzy loves them almost as much as I do. The pattern may work beautiful in any Aran weight yarn, but Ruth's specially dyed Essential Merino is best way to go. I love the way the color looks against the ivy in Suzy's garden.

My Garden Thing

What’s that atop my head? A hat is a very good thing to have when you’re out in cold weather, but a beret is can be charming when you need just a touch of warmth.  Since we just had a nip of frost in the garden (can you believe it?) it's a good time to nurture ones knittin' desire!

While casually perusing the fall issue of the Twist Collective, a pattern name caught my eye. I just HAD to knit Community Gardens, plus it's a cute hat!  If you’ve been reading this blog the past summer you’ll know why the name meant so much. We joined a community garden and have had quite a time, sometimes fun, sometimes heartbreaking, but most of the time heartwarming. (Sounds like knitting, eh?)


A skein of Glacier Blue Beaverslide lay fallow in my stash, awaiting its moment in the sun. It's not only one of my favorite yarns, with it's close to the skin softness and warmth, but this skein is blue! This hat is special in another way, as it was the reason I learned the Twisted German cast on, a technique I’ve wanted to learn, because its stretchy edge is perfect for socks, gloves and hats. It was not hard to learn, but sometimes I am averse to learning new techniques (sad but true). Let's just say, happy am I that I took the time to add this to my bag of tricks.


The ribbing went by so quickly and the lace became quite addicting, so instead of working on larger projects, I found excuses to knit my little garden. She grew rapidly with extra TLC. The best thing about knitting a hat from the bottom up is it grows smaller and smaller. Before you know it, the hat is finished!  Hopefully winters cold will stay at bay, but when it comes my little garden topper will be ready.

Finish Line

The socks! They're so warm and lovely as they cuddle my toes. Maybe TOO warm.


At first I wasn’t sure about the mohair yarn but, it has a nice sheen and extra warmth, plus it adds to the longevity. The simplicity of stockinette shows off the yarn while Carole’s picot edge lends a little elegance and interest. This is the perfect sock pattern for portable simple knitting.

Pattern: Carole's Picot SocksRav_linkredyarnball  
Yarn: Apple Laine Apple Butter (discontinued)
Raveled Here

All the wool socks are washed and stowed in the sock drawer. Hopefully they'll be there for a few months. 


Bare toes feel much better this time of year! Ahh....