Saturday, December 31, 2005

Behold Beautiful Ophelia

Here's Ophelia in all her glory. I'm happy with the way it came out. The directions say to put thin wire in every piece of that fringe, but I think it will be fine as is. I'm not sure when I'll get to wear it since it is 70 degrees here today. But I finished her before the new year.

While looking online for a new pattern to work on, I read one of my favorite blogs, Midnight Knitter, and decided to try these mittenettes. I really have no reason and I'm sure I won't ever wear them it gave me an excuse to do two things:

1. Use my new ball winder that my mom gave me for Christmas
2. Practice shaping and I've never tried to do something with a thumb.

I used the great wool that we bought at Stitches in those grab bags for $15. The ball winder was a necessity. There has to be 400+ yards in one of those hanks. I think they look pretty neat. I finished the first last night in about two hours. I worked the left this morning in about an hour and a half and all I have left is the top ribbing and the thumb. I'm no longer throwing my stitches and I can definitely knit a lot faster.

I wonder if my sister would want something like this to use while driving. We'll see. It made me think that I might want to try a pair of socks next. The yarn was easy to work with. I'm not sure what the other 350 yards will become, but after looking at the way the colors came out, I may try felting something in it. We'll see.

Yes, I'm still working on the Einstein Coat. I've completed another 50 rows on the bottom. Only 67 more to go before picking up the stitches to start the top of the coat.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Ophelia Lives

Yes, except for blocking, Ophelia is complete. I have to say I was pretty scared pulling out those last five stitches, but it worked like a dream. Not one problem. I didn't have quite enough yarn, so instead of 16 rings, I only did 15. I'm glad I cut it short because it gave me enough yarn to embroider the daisies in every other ring. I'm excited to post it. I'm in search of another cable pattern to start soon. I'll let you know what I find.

Also on the needles, a green variegated scarf that I started as a travel project. I've neglected my Einstein Coat, so I've recommitted myself to get back to this pattern. I really need to do something more than scarves. I think once I successfully complete a sweater, I won't be so hesitant. After the blocking, I'll post photos of Ophelia.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Comfort Wrap

This is the wrap I finished for my friend. Posted by Picasa

I thought you might like to see the wrap I created for my friend. I've had great knitting time on this trip and finished it on Sunday. The picture isn't the greatest. My computer has a small camera built in and I used it to snap the pic. Had to use the motel room lighting, which isn't the best.
The shawl was a simple pattern, 66 stitches, and a 4 row repeat creating a subtle pattern in the design. I used a yarn from Michael's that's so soft, size 11 needles, knit til it was fingertip to fingertip in length, then created a crochet chain fringe. I think it turned out pretty cool. I wanted something similar to the "prayer shawl" and think I got a good wrap that I hope she will enjoy using.

Monday, November 14, 2005

Great flower

I think the flower is fantastic! Glad that you told me about the size. I haven't started mine yet, but the yarn, needles etc are in my carryon bag. I got the impluse to knit what we called years ago a "stole", now a shawl or wrap, for a friend of mine who's mother died a few months ago and her father died in October. I wanted her to have something to wrap her arms around when she feels she needs a hug. So I brought that project and finished it last night (I didn't get to travel home this weekend). It is really pretty and unfortunately I don't have a camera with me that will take a decent picture. I plan to send it to here before I go home on Thursday. Now that the wrap is finished, I'll do the flower tonight.

I'm also finishing a sweater that I'm knitting for Heidi for Christmas. I think I wrote about it earlier.

What are you knitting now that you have finished your flower project? Can't wait to see the finished Ophelia. When it comes to doing the fringe, just take a deep breath and do it. Does the pattern speak to blocking before you do the frings? I think you will end up with kinky fringe if you do that and I thought the picture was very straight. Is that right?

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Airplane Knitting

I brought along my flower pattern and thought it would take me this evening to complete it, but I finished this ginormous flower in about an hour on the flight to Dallas today. I think the next flower I do, and I will do more, I'm going to reduce the pattern. It's too big to wear comfortably, but perfect for decorating a purse or worn low on a sweater (on the side or something). I'm happy with it and I'm excited to look for more color combinations. The lighting is horrible, but you get the idea.

Sunday, November 06, 2005

I'm Getting There

I'm getting closer to being done with Ophelia. I've completed 10 rings - only 6 more to go, then embroidering the daisy in every other ring, blocking and then unraveling the garter stitches on the right side to create the fringe (which I'm nervous about). I'm guessing it will take about 10 more hours to finish her. I won't be wearing her in Georgia any time soon though. It is supposed to be 80 degrees here every day next week!

I've ignored my flowers, but I am flying to Dallas this week and I plan to bring this project with me. I have my first evening completely unplaned, so this should supply enough time for me to make headway on it. I'm sure that once I start knitting with that Touch Me yarn, I'm not going to want to put it down. I'm still kicking myself for not buying this yarn for a scarf. Maybe after the holidays.

Monday, October 31, 2005

Touch Me Peony

Remember the Touch Me yarn that we bought at Stitches East? I have knit the Peony and finally got the beads for the center completed yesterday. It looks funky in the picture, because the leaf doesn't look like a leaf at all. It looks better in real life. Am at home today, so I can Trick or Treat with Heidi tonight, so I'm off to Michaels to get a sew-in pin-back for the peony pin. How is your pin coming along. Have you done the other pin yet. My yarn is sitting here, waiting to knit that one as well. I think the pins are unique. We for sure won't ever see another just like them. Can't wait to see Ophelia when she is finished.

The Touch Me Peony Pin is much better in real life. Here the green leaf doesn't look too good.  Posted by Picasa

Christmas Stockings

My knitting time has been taken up with this project that I wish I had never said I would do. A friend of Lisa's "Kate" wanted me to duplicate her hand-knit Christmas stocking for other members of her family. In addition, in the area where the name is on the front, had a date that she wanted changed. Not an easy task. I wasn't able to find yarn that matched exactly, but this is close. "Chip" is my coy. I think it turned out OK. Now to do Chas and Vivi stockings. I hope to have them completed before Thanksgiving. I'm due to go to Seattle for about 10 days in mid November,so this will be my knitting project for the road.
In addition, I am knitting a sweater for Heidi out of the Debbie Bliss Cotton and Angora. It is so soft, but leaves fuzz everywhere (from the Angora) so I learned to put a towel on my lap while knitting. It is knit from the top down and in the round, all stockinette so it is mindless knitting.

These are the stockings. The ?Kate? one is the original and ?Chip? is my copy Posted by Picasa

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Catching Up

I've been slow on knitting these last couple of weeks. I did finish Mandy this week and I'm excited for the weather to change so I can wear her (it was 89 here twice this past week). I'm making some progress on my Einstein Coat, but I will admit that I've neglected him badly. I've completed eight repetitions of the cable on Ophelia. I received a reprint of the pattern from Patternworks earlier this week in the mail. I'm glad to see they made the necessary corrections.

My goal this week is to complete three more sections on Ophelia and finalize my list of knitting projects for the holidays. Oh, I bought the most wonderful 100% llama yarn at an arts and crafts festival last weekend. It was spun with black and natural colored fiber and no dyes. It is so amazingly soft. She had a skein of solid black that I'm wishing I had bought as well. I've got her card, so I may have to have her send it to me. I'm unsure of what I will do with it, but it felt so good and the black and natural combo was too hard to pass up.

Thursday, October 06, 2005


Your cables are great and you sure are speedy with the knitting! You must be having fun! Are you using the left handed yarn method or throwing the yarn over the needle with the right? I haven't read the pattern for the scarf so I didn't know about the dropped stitches. Where are they? The ones that look like ribbing in the photo? I'm on a mailing list from Herrschners Yarn Shop and each week get emails with sales. Today I purchased Debbie Bliss's Cotton and Angora yarn for $3.47 a skein (usually 7.50). Can't wait to see it! I figured I couldn't go too wrong with that blend. I got a variety of colors and hope to knit a sweater for Heidi as well as the top from Dazzling Knits. I don't ofen buy from Herrschner's, but couldn't resist the Debbie Bliss yarn this week.
Keep me posted on your progress with Ophelia. I love the way you name all your projects.

Dramatic Ophelia

Here's where I am. I'm a little obsessed with getting her done. I hope be at least half way (8 circles) by the end of this weekend. I'm a little nervous about the finishing and slipping all of those stitches to create the fringe. I have nightmares of everything unwraveling itself.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Cable Crazy

I'm having a blast making my new scarf. I started on her when I went to the beach and I am 1/4 of the way through the pattern. I am so glad I took the cable class. There were so many mistakes in the pattern (the first row was even wrong) that I wouldn't have been able to figure out what I should do to correct it. I've got it straightened out and after frogging her twice, I think it's correct. Whether it is what Ms. Epstein meant for it to be or not, I will never know, but it will be my version. It's really frustrating. I will take a photo after I work on her tonight. I think I may call her Ophelia, since she is very dramatic.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Closer to Stitches

I love Mandy! What a name and what a great pattern. No wonder you are enjoying knitting it. Where did you get the pattern? If you can do that I am sure you can do the other scarf. You will love cables and will be surprised as to how fun + challenging they are to complete. I worked out a way using Excel to keep up with the patterns. Actually that is the subject of the article that is supposed to be published in the upcoming holiday issue of Cast On magazine. I don't know for sure if it will be published, but they haven't returned the sweater so I assume they are using it for pictures for the article. We'll see.
I'm getting excited about Stitches. I have packed my bag with a couple of sweaters I finished lately since I think the weather may be cool enough to wear them. I will be going to Seattle after Stitches so I am sure the sweaters will come in handy there. I got my homework swatches completed, except the felted swatch. I didn't get a chance to do that. I may do it after I get there, since the class isn't until Saturday.
I finished the knitting on the Wright Wrap I am making. Now to do the finishing work which consists of sewing the panels together, duplicate stitching to form the "lead" as in leaded glass windows and do an edging for it. Knitting it was a challenge and I'll hope to complete the finishing work during the fall.
Can't wait to see you and to visit the Stitches market with you. I have signed up for several classes and of course the fashion shows. It will be so great to spend time with you, see some knitting buddies from Tulsa and meet new ones.

Saturday, September 17, 2005

Getting Longer

My scarf, that I now refer to as "Mandy" since I have lunch with her at least two times a week, is getting longer. The color in this photo doesn't show the fabulous teal and camel colors in the yarn. The more I work with it the more I love the color. I hope to have her done before I leave for Atlantic City on Thursday. I'm looking forward to meeting new people, taking my cables class and going to the fashion show on Friday night. I'm excited!

My goal will be to have the guts to start this Nicky Epstein scarf when I get home. I just love the feminine quality of the cable pattern and all of the fringe. It really makes a statement. We'll see if I get the confidence to start this.

I'm still working on my Einstein Coat, but I'm getting bored with the garter stitch pattern. I'm traveling the entire week after Stitches, so I'll bring it along in the car to hopefully make some progress.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Northwest Knitting

I';m blogging tonight from the Seattle area, actually Edmonds, Washington. I finally got a few minutes to go into the downtown Edmonds area last week while out here. It is absolutely a wonderful place that anyone would love to see. I got about 15 minutes to browse at the yarn shop, Spin A Yarn . I wish I had more time to spend there. It was wonderful. A great yarn shop with wonderful yarns. I plan to go back soon to spend more time. Problem is they close at 5PM and I usually am at work til at least that late. I bought a couple of skeins to knit a scarf. Hope to get it started soon. It will take big needles and it should go fast.

Looks like you are really doing a great job with the felted purses. I'll bet they are fun to knit, but you are right about the swatch. I all too often skip that step because I am too anxious to get right into the pattern. Knock on wood I haven't had a bad problem yet. You know it is only a matter of time til I do. If I were smart, I would learn from your mistake.

Counting the days til Stitches East. Can't wait to get with knitters again.

Monday, September 05, 2005

Little Bag Teaches Big Lesson

I've finally finished Heidi's felted Lucy Bag. I love this pattern, it's really easy - great for mindless knitting - and the style is great.

This is the I've made four Lucy Bags with three different brands of yarn. The first two, made for my mother-in-law and sister-in-law, were made with Lion Brand's Fisherman's Wool. The second one, my mother's bag, was made with Lamb's Pride. This bag I used Cascade 220. The first three bags felted after four or five washings and they shrunk, but not too bad. This bag shrunk a lot in only one washing! When I went to get it out of the washer I was shocked. I had anticipated that the final outcome would be bigger, but what I have made is a smaller version of the bag. At first I was disappointed because I really liked the size of the first three bags, but the more I look at it, and try and carry it in a variety of ways, I kinda like it. Heidi doesn't really carry a big bag anyway, so it will be perfect for keys, a wallet, lipstick and a phone. What else do you need in a purse anyway?

Lesson learned - I should always felt a swatch when I use a new yarn. Emma doesn't look too impressed with the final product, does she?

I'm making a lot of progress on the ruffle scarf and I'm at the halfway point on the bottom of the coat. I hope to be done with the scarf this week and I'll post photos when I have it ready to wear.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Scarf and Coat Pictures

Here are the most recent photos of the ruffle scarf and the Einstein Coat.

I have a long way to go on both, but I find myself knitting some on each every night before bed and I bring my scarf with me to work to knit at lunch. Maybe in a week or so I'll have more progress to share.

Monday, August 22, 2005

New Favorite Yarn Store

I'll admit it - I've got a new favorite place to shop for yarn! I had a blast at the Threaded Bliss Yarn Shop in Nashville last Wednesday evening. I bought some great Cascade 220 in a wonderful camel, teal tweed-like color that I thought would make an interesting ruffle scarf. I hope I get to go back soon. The store Sheila has created is more like a community than just a shop. I'm so jealous that they are so far away.

My Einstein Coat is coming along. I'm almost done with the bottom section. Man - I'm sick of a garter stitch, but I love the color I chose. I'll take photos of it and the ruffled scarf tonight for posting tomorrow. That ruffle scarf works up fast and I am really having fun with the pattern. It's just what I needed. More tomorrow.

Monday, August 15, 2005

On the Road Again

I found a new store, Threaded Bliss Yarns, to visit while I'm in Nashville for the next three days. I've found quite a few things that I want to add to my "gotta knit" list including a new bag for me, a sweater for my friend's son (who I am baby sitting on Friday night so I can secretly take his measurements), a poncho for my niece, a ruffled scarf for a couple of people at work and a shrug for me for this winter. I've started on my Einstein Coat. It's a huge undertaking and I'm not even through one ball of yarn yet, but I'm riding in the car a lot this week so I hope to accomplish a lot of knitting while I'm in the car. It's easy and mindless work, but it's a ton of knitting. I hope I can get it done before I go to Stitches. I'm really looking forward to it. I kinda feel like I should start a shrug too so I might have something to wear while I'm there. I'll let you know what I see at this shop in Nashville.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Airport knitting

Well, where has this summer gone? I can't believe that next week is the last week in July and I have very little to show for it in the way of knitting. My traveling has picked up and I will be spending part of each week in Lincoln, NE and the other part of the week in Seattle WA for the remainder of the year. I'll need to find something that is portable knitting. The wrap that I am working on uses too many colors on each row and the pattern requires too close observation for me to feel comfortable working on it in the airport.

I am seeing more and more knitters in airports. Are you? On Monday's trip, I saw 2 women knitting in the Minneapolis airport and one on the same flight I was on into Lincoln. It is fun to see a craft that I love so much being enjoyed by others.

I envy you the shopping trip in Massachusetts. Yes, you can drop a paycheck on yarn without batting an eye. A couple of years ago I was in Stevens Point Wisconsin and found a yarn shop with a great warehouse sale. I had a shopping cart full before I stopped. I'm still working on some of that yarn, but still buy more. My motto is going to be.."She who dies with the biggest yarn stash, wins!" I'm sure that it applies to more than me when it comes to a yarn stash.

How did your summer wrap turn out? I'm so glad you bought a copy of Knitter's. It is one of my favorite mags. I've subscribed to it for a few years. You know there are people who collect all the back issues. I know someone in Tulsa who has a complete set! Every issue! It has taken her a while to collect them all, but Ebay has helped.

Sunday, July 10, 2005

Successful Yarn Shopping

I was on vacation last week and Kevin and I took a trip to Western Mass to visit one of my favorite yarn suppliers. I spent two hours in Webs and bought yarn to complete my Einstein Coat as well as some interesting muted cotten out of the bargin bin and some red wool for a purse. I had a blast!

Sunday, June 19, 2005

One Purse Wrapped Up

I still do not have the yarn for my wrap, so it's safe to say that I won't have the wrap complete for my trip to Boston. We leave a week from Tuesday, so I doubt that the yarn will come in and I'll have the time to work on it prior to our departure. Much like you, I'd like to support my new LYS, but it is frustrating to know that I could have ordered the same yarn online and had it in just a few days. It's been two weeks. Oh, well. I'm going to take your suggestion and work on a swatch with some cotton yarn I have to prepare to work on the wrap. Maybe by September it will be ready!

My interim project was the SOHO Purse from one of my new books, Bags, A Knitter's Dozen. You can wear it in three different ways. I thought is was a fun casual purse for the summer. I'm always wanting something to just throw my keys and id in for a day out. I just bought some kitchen cotton, which worked pretty well. It may not have longevity, but I can say the same for 90% of the purses I own - no matter what they are made of.

Things I learned while completing this little bag: 1) how to complete a three-needle bind off; 2) how to sew in a zipper in a knitted piece; 3) why you should allow for major stretch of the i-cord strap when you have things in the bag - I over shot this by a lot. I'll probably redo the cord on this one.

Here's a look at the finished product.:

I'm not sure if I'll do another one of these bags. A couple of people I've shown it to have been less than thrilled with the look of the bag. I guess it's a little to hippy or crunchy for them. I still want to knit one with a flap that folds over like a messenger bag.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Pattern and Wrap

That's a great pattern and I think you can do it. If you are like me, I want to start knitting as soon as I can after deciding to knit the pattern. Why don't you get some yarn that you have left over from another project and appropriate sized needles, cast on about 3 multiples of the wrap's pattern stitches and practice the stitches. It will make the real project soar when your real yarn arrives, since you will already have worked out the stitches in the pattern. It will make the pattern flow much easier when you get the "good" yarn.

I finished the child's sweater and have already mailed it to Cast On. I will be writing the article to go with it, hopefully over the weekend. It's a great load off my mind to have it finished. I made a size 8 so hopefully when I get it back it will fit Heidi and she can have it for the winter.

I'm real excited to have started the ruana wrap that I designed. It is fun to knit it using all the colors that I selected. I am using intarsia since the color is in large blocks. It is not conducive to travel since I would have to carry too many balls of yarn. I'm hoping that I can enter it in a design contest later this year.
Did you get the brochure for Stitches East? I have it in my briefcase and will make my class choices soon. I hope you are still planning to go. It will be a fabulous experience for you. My first trip to a Stitches event was so great.

Sunday, June 05, 2005

Step 1 - Buy Yarn

Ok - it's taken me all week to complete step one of the knitting process. I took my pattern over to my new knitting store to select just the right yarn. I'd looked at a lot of different types of cotton on-line, but when you're buying 1400 yards, you also have to consider price too! Even though her store is new, the owner helped me to select just the right yarn Plymouth Fantasy Naturale, which she thought would have the right gauge, would hold up over time and would wash best. I selected a raspberry color (8016) and I hope to have the yarn in hand by next weekend so I can make up for a lot of lost time. I guess I'll have to do my housework since I have nothing to procrastinate with this week!

Monday, May 30, 2005


I treated myself to a new knitting magazine this weekend and purchased the latest issue of Knitters. It's a magazine that I don't usually buy because I never feel like I can make something in it, however; this time I just bought the magazine without looking through it. I was surprised to find quite a few adorable, knit-able, summer wraps that I think I can make. The Sunset Wrap on page 76 is so cute and would be perfect for me to take to Boston, where the summer evenings are too cool for this Georgia girl. So, I've made a commitment to make this wrap over the next month. Tomorrow I will go to my LYS to buy the 1400 yards of yarn I'll need as well as a new size 8 circular needle. I'd like to find a nice, neutral color so I can use the wrap into the fall, but I have a tendency to really dislike a blah color after working on a project for two weeks. Let's hope this goes quickly. I leave for Boston on June 28th. It looks challenging, but the outcome looks worth the effort. I'll take photos of my progress and let you know how I'm doing.

Speaking of my LYS, there's a new yarn shop in town! I just stopped in for a few minutes at Creative Yarns, but I have to say my brief experience was very positive. Friendly staff, interesting knitting opportunities and, most importantly, an eagerness to draw in younger knitters. In glancing at her class schedule, I'd like to take her color class. I do fine with just one color, but when it comes to switching colors, carrying each color along the back, etc., I have some trouble. I hope I can make the dates of the class work. Instruction aside, I'd like to have the opportunity to knit with other people. Since I'm never home, and when I am I don't want to leave, I rarely have the opportunity to knit in a group. I think it would be good for me.

Monday, May 23, 2005


I love the flowers! I'll bet the beads took a while to do, but they really add to the flower. I can't wait to make some myself. You should think about selling these at Mossy Creek. Can you do that?

Well the sweater and the written directions must be finished by June 10th so I am working under a time frame. I'm knitting as fast as I can. I've let the master level work sit untouched for the last 2 weeks as I work on the sweater.

I haven't received anything about Stitches East, but I know it is Sept 22 - 25 and at the Atlantic City Convention Center. I agree it would be fun to stay at a Trump Hotel. Selfishly, I would like to use frequent stay points to stay free, but I'll bet that won't happen isnce my points are Marriott or Hilton points. You can go to the web site and sign up to have brochure sent to you, but I don't think it is ready yet or I would have gotten it. I got the Stitches Midwest brochure a few weeks ago and it is in August in Chicago. I can't wait to see what classes they are offering and select the ones I want to take. These events are so great, I always learn a lot and leave inspired to work on a new project.

I'm at home the first part of this week and will finish the sweater today, I hope. Wish me luck on that. I'll send pics later.

Saturday, May 21, 2005

Stress-less Stitching

There's no reason to stress. It stinks that you have to start over on a couple of the pieces, but at least it isn't the sweater! There's no timeframe that you have to have them complete is there? If not, if you don't get everything done in one week, no big deal.

I finally finished two flowers. They are super easy and fast. The beading takes the longest. Here's a photo of the two that I've completed:

It feels good to actually finish something. It even made me pull out my magazines and look again at a sweater that I've had my eye on. Nothing started, but the thoughts are there. You've gotta start somewhere - right?

My follow through has been horrible lately. I've got to make more of a commitment to knit at least every other night during the week. Unfortunately, I think my dog and I look a lot alike these days during the evening - wiped out! I've got to find more energy to commit to my needles. We'll see how successful I am.

I've not received any information from the event in Atlantic City in September. I should go back to that site and see if they have posted a brochure yet. Even though it is four months away, it will be here before you know it! Let me know if you get anything. I wonder if the event will be at a Trump hotel. Atlantic City is so cheesy. It would be fun to stay in a super cheesy hotel!

Friday, May 20, 2005

Stressed Knitting

I loved the web site with the flower patterns. You've inspired me to knit some flowers for my suits. I think they will add a neat touch. Thanks for including the web link.

I've been a bit stressed lately. Got too much going on. First, my submission for master level III came back with a lot more work needed. My sweater passed, but several of the swatches need re-knitting as well as the cap. I got started on that right away, since I didn't want to quit nor let it sit on the shelf forever waiting for me to get time to complete the work.

Then I got an email from Cast On accepting my offer to write an article for the magazine. The topic is using Microsoft Excel to help in knitting Aran sweaters. They agreed to publish the article in the winter/holiday 2005 issue but wanted a design to go with the article. I didn't have one ready, so 2 weekends ago I worked out a design, bought yarn and started an Aran pullover for Heidi (little Heidi, that is). I've completed the back and am past the armholes on the front. I'm using a washable DK weight yarn so that it won't be too bulky for a 6 year old. The sweater has to be done by June 10th and the article by sometime in August (I forgot the date).

Add to that, I am now working on 2 engagements, one in Nebraska and one in Illinois. I could be adding one in Washington before the summer is over. That is keeping me hopping! On top of that I do some work with a professional orgainzation (item writing for an advancement exam) and I have 15 questions due in August. These have to be researched and meet a lot of requirements to assure that they are testing the right knowledge. No easy task, how did I get talked into that committee?

I have grandmother duty next week Mon - Wed and then go to IL on Thursday and Friday. I hope to finish the sweater, write the pattern and plan 3 work relatedpresentations before I leave here on Thursday morning. Don't think there is enough time to get all that done! Needless to say I am a bit stressed. I thought summers were supposed to be fun! What happened.

On June 4th am going to Kansas City. It is my semi-annual trip to the periodontist there. We have perios here in Wichita, but I have been going to this guy in KC for about 7 years so I proposed to keep going to him. Lisa and Heidi will go up with me since we will be spending the weekend in the indoor water park that Heidi just loves. If the sweater isn't done by the time I go I'll have to spend some time in the hotel room, knitting. When it is done, the stress should lessen for a while.

Now I want to knit some flowers jut for fun and as a de-stresser! Will that work? Needless to say the Master Knitting re-do will just have to wait. May be fall before I get back to it.

Saturday, May 14, 2005

One Flower Down

Well, I finally finished something - kind of. I used my sock yarn from KnitPicks to knit the second flower from the most recent issue of Knitty. All I have left to do is bead the center and attach the pin back. It looks cute and I'm debating on whether or not to add a leaf. I'll take a picture this week and upload it. I hope to find time to make a few more to give away just for fun. They are very easy and work up really quickly, so it keeps my hands busy and lets me feel like I can accomplish something.

I'm 80% of the way there on the shawl that I started two weeks ago. Needless to say I didn't wear it in Boone last weekend. I've just not found the time to dedicate to a long period of knitting. Tomorrow night I may make more progress on it. I've just got a case of knitting ADHD, I guess.

I received my first issue of Cast On in the mail on Monday of this week. I'm now officially a member of TKGA. I enjoyed looking at the photographs, although I have to admit I've not really had time to read very much in it. Same goes for the new issue of Interweave Knits. I'll get to them soon.

Heidi has left for her trip to London for the week. I've trusted her to pick out some fabulous yarn for me while she is in York. I'm excited to see what she brings home for me.

Saturday, April 30, 2005

Too Much Travel, Not Enough Knitting

I've neglected our blog badly these last few weeks. I've been spending a lot of time in Memphis during the week and then busy doing various things during the weekend, so I've been a bad blogger.

I'm currently knitting a wrap in some handspun wool that I bought at Mossy Creek, an arts and crafts festival that mom and I work at twice a year. This time they had a woman demonstrating spinning and she had some wool with her that she had spun. Her prices were more than reasonable. I bought approximately 600 yards for $27! I'm working on a simple little garter stitch wrap using the wool which is an interesting color mix of a light lavender and kelly green. Forgive me, these photos aren't that great, but you'll get the idea.

It's just beautiful, very different, soft and it knits like a dream. I'm using size 15 needles so the thin parts in the yarn have a lacy feel. It's easy and not very challenging, but it's what I need to distract me in the evening and on the short hop I make to Memphis twice a week. I hope to have it complete before I go to Boone on Thursday so I may get to use it before the fall.

I've started a few things, the pink sweater, Heidi's purse and this wrap, but haven't had a finished project in awhile. I need to focus on something in cotton after I complete my wrap. I've found a nice, easy, raglan sweater pattern in a Family Circle knitting magazine. It seems simple. I've also got plans to do some flowers using my yarn from KnitPicks. I'm dreaming, I know. My goal is to dedicate more time to knitting over the next month. I'll let you know how it goes!

Thursday, April 28, 2005

Traveling, models and summer knitting

Sorry that I haven't posted anything lately. I am busy with traveling. Last week was in Lincoln, NE and then Chicago for the weekend. Returned home on Sunday and left again on Monday for Lincoln. These weeks that have weekday and weekend travel are so hectic. I did a little knitting. Am working on the sleeves for the pullover from sock yarn. I really like the weight of the finished pieces and am looking forward to finishing it. If I like it I may knit another from a different color. I chose a blue/gray/black/cream multi colorway since it will work with jeans so well. But would rather have a brighter colors for another. The yarn I am using is also from Knit Picks and I like knitting with it. The price is right and quality is good. I'm sure I'll order from them again. I ordered yarn from a local yarn shop in Lincoln about 6 weeks ago and it still isn't in. I'm not real pleased with the fact it has taken so long. I try to patronize the LYS (local yarn shop) whenever I can feeling that if we don't support them then they will go out of business and where will I be able to go and squeeze yarn? But if the service is this poor, why bother? I could have ordered the same yarn on line and would already have been knitting with it. Oh, well. Live and learn.

I had knit the Wild Forks shell and cardigan last year for publication in Cast On magazine. After the mag has photographed it I get it back. Knitting for the model is a different size than I wear so I gave the sweater to my friend in TN. She and I attended the same meeting in Chicago this weekend and she wore the sweaters. They looked so great on her and I was delighted to see her wear them. She gots lots of compliments on them as well. I almost lost the buttons on my blouse! I was so proud of the finished garments and the reception she got when wearing them.

I'll keep knitting throughout the summer. What about you? I especially like knitting with cotton yarn in the summer, but don't have anything planned. I need time with magazines to dream a little. My latest issue of Cast On came just as I was leaving the house on Monday, can't wait to get home tonight to read it. Maybe I'll get inspired by it.

Thursday, April 14, 2005

Plane Reading

I'm not traveling this week, but will probably be back at it next week. I get more knitting done on the road, so not a lot was accomplished on my sweater this week. I've finished the back and I'm half way through with the left side. I guess just three and a half more pieces left before assembly begins. It looks a little big based on the back measurement, but maybe it will come together nicely.

I've gotten into the habit of buying a knitting magazine or book before most of my trips and I read on the plane since most of my trips are short hops, not long journeys. I'm headed to Toronto in May, so that will be a knitting trip. My favorites so far are Vogue Knitting and Interweaves. Both serve as a dream book for me. I love to look at the photos and think about the possibilities. I'm not sure if this qualifies as a magazine, but I love to read knitty, an on-line magazine. It's got great designs, but the best part is the writing. It is so well written for an on-line publication. If you've not read it, you should check it out. They have great flower patterns in the spring issue which will be perfect for some take along knitting over the next month.

I ordered yarn from KnitPicks and it's great. I love the colors. I just bought a single ball of a lot of different colors just to see what it looked and felt like. It will be perfect for knitting up some flowers.

I found a pattern for a greyhound sweater, but it has cables and it looks kind of masculine. I'll have to get some good measurements of her so we can create something special for her.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005


Gosh, I too haven't had time to do much knitting. First was the onslaught of spring allergies. I was really having a rough time last week, but thankfully the Bradford Pears are shedding their blooms. That usually signals the end of my spring allergies and I am finally feeling better. Hopefully I'll be doing OK from this point on.
The greyhound coat sounds like a great project. When we spend some time together this fall, perhaps we can work out something that will work. Meanwhile begin to think about what you want it to look like. More later on that project.
Which magazines have you decided you like? My favorites are Knitter's Magazine, Cast On, Interweave Knits and Vogue Knitting. I guess my real favorite is Knitter's. Their patterns are usually unique and stylish. A lot are more challenging and require that you learn new techniques.
I didn't bring any knitting on the road with me this week. Can't believe I left home without needles and yarn. I'm having a little withdrawal.

Saturday, April 02, 2005

Greyhound Sweaters

Well, I've not had much of an opportunity to actually knit this week. I've done a lot of dreaming and looking at a variety of sweaters in three different magazines that I have my eye on. While I'm always looking for any knitting magazine, I'm starting to get a better feel for the ones I like and the ones that are cheesy. I'm now on the look out for a dog sweater pattern that fits a greyhound. Kevin and I adopted a former racer today - Solitary Seka (we're calling her Seka) - and they usually wear sweaters or coats or something during cooler weather due to their thin skin and lack of body fat. I'm excited to try my hand at something for her, but I have all winter to really find something that will fit her in the end since she is such an unusual shape.

Monday, March 21, 2005

Great start

Looks like you have a great start on your sweater! I hadn't seen the magazine with the pattern, but it looks like it will be a cute one. Congratulations on doing a gauge. That is the smart thing to do, and you have compensated well for the extra 1/2 stitch realizing that it will be a tad bigger around because of it. I can't wait to see the finished sweater.
I finished the ballet sweater I was making for my Heidi. I'll give it to her for Easter and hope that it will work for her. I finished last night just before bed time, so I didn't get to take a picture. I left on a 6AM flight this morning. Needless to say, I didn't have time to take pics this morning either.
I got the wild notion on Saturday to crochet the Coming Home (Martha Stewart) poncho from Lion Brand. Their web site has a pattern to download for free. I had enough skeins of black Homespun to make one and thought it would be good for travel in a few weeks, when you only need a light jacket. So I started it on Saturday and finished on Sunday! Looks pretty good. I am shorter so it hangs a little long on me. I'll send a pic of it as well. It is a fairly easy project and you can tell it goes fast. Do you crochet?
I'm still working on my pullover out of sock yarn. That is my airplane and hotel knitting at present. I did work out a gauge and started my graphs for the Wright Wrap. I'm getting a little nervous about knitting it, wondering if I will like it, if it will look OK, etc. and the big question, will I use it? Who knows? It is always the burning question when knitting, will I like it and will I wear it or will it be an exercise in knitting only to be on the shelf for the remainder of the yarn's useful life? Oh, the philosophy of it all gives me a headache.
I'm sorry that we had to cancel the TKGA conference, but I am looking forward to Stitches East in October. Keep looking a the web site, so we can get early picks on classes before they fill up.

Saturday, March 19, 2005

Sweater Start

I started the pink sweater I've been talking about for weeks now on Thursday. I've got a good start on the back, as you can see.

My swatch was a half a stitch bigger than what was called for, but since I was in-between sizes on the size chart, I thought it would be ok. I may pay the price in the end, but I guess I'll live and learn. I'll be happy if it looks like it is supposed to when complete and save actually fitting for the next try :).

I still have the straps to finish on Heidi's purse, which I must finish this week. She'll be here for Easter, so I want to have it done so she can take it home with her.
By next Saturday I hope to have pictures to post.

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

On the Road Again

Well, I'm finally back to traveling after being at home for 5 months. It was wonderful to have that time at home. But alas, one must work. I am in Lincoln, NE this week (as last week). I arrived a day early since flights didn't cooperate. My first stop was Threads, the local yarn shop. I met the owner, Gladys and really enjoyed talking to her about my next project. She was so helpful. I wanted to just see some yarn that I could use for my next big project and since she was so helpful, I returned this week to buy some of the colors she has in stock and place a special order with her for the other colors. I'm embarking on a design, I'll call the Wright Wrap. It is a wrap inspired by the work of Frank Lloyd Wright and uses about 9 colors. I'll be carrying the yarn back on the plane on Friday and working out my gauge so I can actually draw the graphs that I will need to knit it. You know how it is when you decide that you want to do something really unique. I hope it turns out as great as I have pictured it in my mind. I am so glad to find a yarn shop with a friendly person.
I am knitting in the hotel room at night with the sock yarn and the sweater is turning out very interesting. The pattern is not symmetrical but interesting. I'll attach a picture of it when I get back home.
Thanks for the remarks about my sweater and cap. TKGA has it now and I'm waiting to hear their critique. Should take a few weeks for them to review and comment. My worst fear is that none of the work will pass their evaluation. I would encourage you to get the first level of the master's program and go for it. It isn't too difficult for you to do and what you will learn is priceless. I have learned a lot about knitting by doing all the swatches, answering the questions, doing the book and article reviews, etc. It's a great teaching/learning tool. There are 3 levels and no deadline for getting them finished. Once you pay and get the requirements, if over a year has passed and you haven't completed the work TKGA will send you the updated requirements, which gives you another year to complete the work. I did the first level in 2000, so it has taken me 5 years to complete the other 2 levels.

Saturday, March 12, 2005

Sweater Envy

I'm still working on my sister's purse. It's mindless knitting at this point and after making four of the same bag, I'm not sure I want to make one for myself, no matter how much I like the pattern.

I ordered a bunch on yarn from KnitPicks this week. A lot of single skiens to experiment with in colors that I like, but have no real need for. I thought I could use them as filler for my recycled yarn project.

In my haste to rip up my garage sale find last week, I failed to take a picture of the sweater before the disassembly - but here are the balls of yarn that were once a Banana Republic 100% cotton purple sweater.

I liked the texture of the yarn - ribbon like. It should make a nice addition to the wool I have left over from a couple of projects and another sweater I plan to tear into in the next few weeks. The unraveling went well. Not too many short pieces. I saved all the short strands and tied them together to make a cat toy since they all love chasing the balls of yarn as I knit. They love it.

I think that tomorrow I will go out and buy some Lion Brand Yarn and try my hand at the sweater from the cover of Knit 1 magazine to wear this spring. I can appreciate that there is MUCH better and nicer yarn in the world than Lion Brand, but for my first attempt at a sweater I don't want to spend a fortune and I like the coral color that they used in the pattern. I have a horrible tendency to be attracted to dark yarn - black, gray, brown, navy. I'm attempting to break away from this safety net with this first little short sweater. If they don't have pink, I will look for kelly green - my new favorite color for spring. If this sweater goes ok, I will invest in better yarn for round 2. I'd like to actually knit it in a much lighter weight yarn so I can wear it for cool evenings, but I think I will start with the pattern "as is" before thinking I know better than the designer.

Your pieces for your Master Knitter program are just wonderful. I can only hope I will have enough guts to even attempt something like that one day. I guess for now I will just have to admire all of these beautiful things I see and use them as inspiration.

Monday, March 07, 2005

Mailing today

I read about your thrift shop work. I know a woman who did this. Found a navy blue wool sweater at Goodwill and ripped it apart. She then added a varigated yarn to coordinate and knit a great pullover. She has worn it a lot, so it can be done. I've seen it and it looks good. Good luck with yours. Keep me posted on how it goes.
I just returned from the UPS store where I mailed my submission to TKGA for the master's knitting program. I can't believe that I finally finished all the work required at this level. I hope the committee that reviews submissions is OK with what I have done. They usually have some portion that they think you could have done better and will ask that you re-knit that part, either a swatch or an item (sock, cap, etc) that you had to do. I just hope I don't have to re-knit the sweater. That is too big a job. It was my goal to finish the submission while I've been on this extended vacation. Looks like I just made it since I go back to work tomorrow.
I took a class last week on making swimsuits so I could make some dance/ice skating leotards for my granddaughter. So I've been busy with that. I made a pink one during the class and decided that she needed a cross over (wrap) ballet sweater to go with it. I had found this really neat yarn at Michaels and wanted so badly to make something with it, so the ballet sweater is the right thing. I really don't have a pattern. I found some directions on google search and adapted them to her size. The yarn is sooooo soft, Moda-dea (never heard of that brand before) Dream. It is blend of chenille and eyelash. I have finished the fronts and back so I started the sleeves this morning. I hope it turns out OK and that she will wear it. I've done some really cute things that never see the light of day once I finish them because she says they are "itchy." There is no way this is itchy.
I'm going out of town for work tomorrow and will not be home til Saturday. Traveling again the following week, so at least I'll have this project to take with me. I agree that you can get a lot of knitting done while on the road. I really don't have anything to do while in the hotel at night so knitting keeps me company. I think I'm at home again the last week in March but will know more tomorrow which will give me time to get the homework done for the TKGA conference classes.
I'm looking forward to the trip to the conference and seeing you there. It will be so great to share our craft together in person rather than electronically all the time. I think you will find the conference to be inspiring and fill you with ideas. Have you started your coat yet? It might be a little difficult to travel with those pieces, but if you are gone for a few days, put it in a piece of checked luggage. Once I plan to knit something, I must start it right away. Then I can put it down occasionally and go back to it later. I have 3 projects on the needles now and another one or two in my head. Am doing a sweater for me, linen stitch with 3 colors of sport weight yarn, a sweater made with the self patterning sock yarn and the ballet sweater. Surely I'll finish one of them soon.
Travel safe and knit happy.

Saturday, March 05, 2005

Blue Suede Blogging

A great way to make progress on a project is to travel on a weekly basis. I'm almost done with the body of my sister's purse. I should start the straps sometime this week.

I read a very interesting article while on the plane about knitters who go to thrift stores, buy old wool sweaters, unravel them and reuse the yarn for other projects. So today, my two girlfriends and I went out garage sale shopping and I decided to see if I could find some wool sweaters to rip apart and try my hand at this. I found some purple cotton and some brown wool from two different sweaters. I like the way the two colors and textures look together, so I hope I can successfully rip these sweaters apart and make a wrap or scarf or something. It was fun looking for things to reuse.

I finished the hat I started on when sick from the SNB book. All I have left is the pompoms. I'll post pictures this week before I send it off to Boone.

Saturday, February 26, 2005

In the home stretch

Well, the big news out of Wichita today is that they have caught the BTK serial killer that has killed 10 women in the last 30 years. While the news conference was on TV this morning I did what I always do while watching TV, knit. Actually this morning I wove in the ends of this Aran sweater that I've finished for the TKGA Master's level program. It won't win any design awards, but I hope it fills the requirements for the level. I had some concerns about the bottom band, but all in all think it turned out OK. A lot of cabling went into making it. I have to send a picture of someone wearing the sweater and the cap so the committee can see that it actually fits and can be worn. So these are the ones I'm sending with the packet.

Aran Sweater for Master's program

The other requirement for the program is something in Fair Isle. Actually, I could have done the sweater in Fair Isle and the cap in Aran, but chose the other way around. I knit 4 caps before I got a pattern that I liked and got the shaping to work out the way I wanted. Maybe my head is just out of shape with everyone else's heads. I'm sure the cap won't win any design awards. I just hope the master's committee is OK with it.

Fair Isle Cap for Master's program Posted by Hello

I'm now finishing up the other reqirements, the swatches, questions and reports. I'm almost finished and should be able to get it all in the mail on Monday. I'll be thrilled to be that far along. Usually there are things that have to be reworked if the committee doesn't approve what you submitted. But that is not as difficult or as time comsuming as the original work. They are very nice about it and will tell you what you have failed to successfully complete. It is a learning experience and I've learned a lot while doing the other 2 levels.
I wonder what my mother would have to say about doing the master's program. There wasn't anything like this when she was knitting for us.
Well, back to the questions and research necessary to answer them.

Saturday, February 19, 2005

Too Sick to Knit

I can't believe that I've felt so bad this entire week that I've not felt like picking up any project this entire week. I was in Memphis in a hotel room all week and all I had the strength to do was to sleep and watch tv. While home in bed over the past two days I've kept myself company in bed with my two new knitting books. I'm almost back to new.

I had to cancel my trip to Boone this weekend because I was so ill. I started work on a cute hat from one of my SNB books to give to my sister. I'm 50% done. I should be able to start work on the I-cord tomorrow. Maybe I'll have it done in time to send to her this week with the other stuff I was supposed to deliver on our trip. I didn't have the energy to start a larger project, like her purse. Sometimes you just want instant gratification.

Triangles and entralac

I liked the triangle scarf you made. Thought the colors were great and the technique inventive. The triangles (which are technically not short rows) reminded me of the base triangles in entralac knitting, so I thought I would share the felted entralac backpack that I knit in 2002. It is a kit from Knitability. You can see their designs on their web site, BTW one of the principles in Knitability, Gwen Bortner, is teaching at the TKGA conference in PA next month and I hope to take one of her classes. I usually don't buy kits, but liked the design so much I ponied up and bought it. The colors are great, black, gray, red and purple. And I know you like felting. Hope the pics show the colors great.

Felted entralac backpack

Bottom of backpack Posted by Hello

Entralac is so much fun to do, you work in small segments and each time you complete a triangle or square, you are so amazed as to how it fits together.

Looking forward to the conference.

Saturday, February 12, 2005

New Things

After a week in Memphis, I returned to my office this morning to gather some documents for my trip next week and I found a surprise package from my sister - two knitting books. I am thrilled!

The yarn for her purse arrived as I was leaving on Monday. I wound two of the four balls this afternoon. I hope to have the last two finished before bed tonight and then start on Heidi's bag tomorrow night while watching the Grammys.

The new project that I started last week "to keep my hands busy" is shown below. I taught myself how to work short rows as well as how to make corkscrew fringe. I just started using Walmart yarn because it was just a test project, but I kinda like the way it is coming out. Maybe it won't be bad for just a decorative piece.

For Valentine's Day I made my mom and her next door neighbor a notebook of dishcloth patterns that I found on the net. There are probably 75 different patterns. My mom's neighbor is 82 and is a very talented knitter. She is very active and you wouldn't believe she is as old as she is. I bought them each a set of size 7 bamboo needles and some yarn to get started. I'm excited about giving them their starter kits tomorrow.

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Cute dog coat

I am so glad that you liked the last post. I wanted to show some possibilities. There are other ways to add yarn, but these are the ones I use the most. Glad they work for you.

Rosie's coat is so cute. You did a great job of the fitting, shaping etc. Congratulations! I'm sure you will use these techniques for the coat you are knitting. I know what you mean about keeping your hands busy. I am still working on the two sweaters (the Aran and one other) and have ordered yarn for another so I can have something to do that will be more portable, in case I get back on the road soon.

What about the TKGA conference? Have you sent in your request for classes and if so, which ones are you signed up to attend? I haven't registered yet, but think we should do so soon, if you are still going. Just let me know.

Saturday, February 05, 2005

Killin' Time

You have no idea how timely your knitting lesson that you posted was. I had to apply your technique when finishing Rosie's doggie sweater, completed below. The photos were AMAZING! Thank you so much. You should write a book.

I'm really just killing time knitting little things like scarves and dishcloths until the yarn for my sweater arrives. I'm trying to find new stitches to practice. I'm also trying my hand and felting some roses for either my purses or to wear with my stuffy suits at work. Just things to keep my hands busy!

Monday, January 31, 2005

Adding new yarn in the middle of a row

Adding new yarn in the middle of a row

I don't remember where I learned this but sometimes you just have to add new yarn in the middle of a row. In the pics I used red for the new yarn. Step 1 is to simply lay the new yarn on top of the old yarn and work a few stitches with both yarns held together.

Copmpleted 3 stitches with new yarn

You can see the 4 stitches with both the red and white yarns. Now complete the row with the new yarn and when working the next row, just knit the 4 stitches as if there was only one yarn in the stitch.

Finished stitches with new yarn 
Posted by Hello

Once completed, you really can't see the old yarn since it hides so beautifully unde the old yarn and the additional bulk isn't noticeable, expecially in the felting projects that you are doing.
Hope this helps.

Your doggie sweater looks great. Looks as if you mastered the shaping that you were worried about. Once you learn those basics, then sweaters, coats, etc are just a step away. I haven't knit the Einstein coat but know of others who have and they liked it. Macon is a great place to own a lighter weight coat. Can't get too much use out of it in the midwest.


Next step

Once the first stitch is completed, now pick up the working yarn and complete the next stitch. In doing so the working yarn passes over the "tail" and anchors it so that the first stitch doesn't slip. When the garment is done, work the "tail" into the knitting as you would normally do.

Step 2 of adding new yarn Posted by Hello

I am so glad that I learned this trick for adding yarn at the end of the row. It makes it so much easier to do.

Adding new yarn

I thought I would share with you the technique that I learned from Maureen Mason-Jamieson at the workshop for K.N.I.T. in Tulsa in November since you had some trouble with adding more yarn in the felted bags you were making. She says, at the end of the row when your current yarn won't do a complete next row, make a fish shape (loop) with the new yarn with the short end on top of the bottom end (if you hold it up to look at it). In the picture I am using red yarn so you can see the path the yarn takes to create the new stitch and anchor the "tail" I hope you can see the short tail is above the longer yarn attached to the ball. I insert the right needle into the first stitch as if to knit, then attach the loop I have created over the needle and pull it through, a knit stitch completed.

Adding additional yarn at end of row, step 1 Posted by Hello

I'll put the next step in the next post since I can't figure out how to post more than one picture in a posting.

Saturday, January 29, 2005

Icy day

Because outside looked like this today:

I was able to accomplish this:

Rosie's doggie sweater needs some more work, but it's coming a long. If I can find the time tomorrow, I'll be finished and will take a few shots with her wearing it. I used really cheap yarn - but for a dog sweater that will need to be washed over and over, I thought it would be ok. I love to read about the different kinds of yarn and imagine what I could make. I got a new yarn catalog yesterday and I'm excited about placing my next order. I'm really too new at this to look at yarn and look at a pattern and instinctively know how wonderful something could look using that yarn. I guess that's just an excuse to buy more yarn and try new things.