Thursday, November 29, 2007

Thanksgiving redone

So here's the left front of Lillian redone. Now we'll see if I ever make the rest.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

The people you hang out with

Courtesy of Leah over at UFO Knit Club, is the link to this Pattern. Yum! Fortunately it would not be flattering to me and so I will get to avoid this project, except I have that tall friend, or maybe if I made the skirt shorter, or, or...

Yeah, no.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Darn Lillian

So here is the back of the Lillian by Jane Ellison sweater. I decided the best punishment for it was to rip it back and promptly re-knit it so it would behave! It's more coral than pink, those dratted lights.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Holiday Knits

The disclaimers: First - I did not invent this design. I stole it from something I saw in Nordstrom's five or six years ago. The original was also in cheap acrylic and was $90.00 (yes, US dollars). Second - the wrap pictured is about 5 years old with some hard wear. It has been schlepped around the country. Wrapped around objects for moving. Hung off endless sofa arms. Machine washed and dried, and otherwise mistreated. Third - someday I will buy upscale yarn and make this again.

After seeing this in Nordstrom's I used 3 skeins of Homespun Waterfall and size 17 needles to make my own. The yarn is doubled throughout. You can see where this would be a very fast knit, easily completed for a December deadline.
The basic premise is a wide rectangle in 2x2 rib. Mine is about 10 inches unstretched. Knit the length of a wingspan or about 6 inches more if the person is heavyset. Bind off. Pick up an equal number of stitches centered on the length and knit down from here in 2x2 rib. Again mine is about 10 inches, but I am short waisted. Bind off. Toss around shoulders and either wear open as a wrap that keeps the lower part of your back warm, or pin closed and have a snuggly warm torso. It also works under a coat as a bulky scarf that provides a little extra warmth for the back. The hue of Homespun that I used has wide bands of colours in it. So I did take the time at the beginning to match up colour segments so that even though it was double standed it maintained those light and dark areas.

Thursday, November 22, 2007


I am thankful that knitting can be ripped out without loss of materials. Only our sanity suffers. After knitting this left front of a cardi, and moving on to the Back, I decided to listen to the little voice that had kept saying "Are you Sure this is Right?" and double checked the pattern for errata. Yeah. The Lace pattern is WRONG! So now I have to rip the back, rip the completed front (because the lace is at the bottom). Perhaps this yarn should grow up to be something else eh?

Seriously, there are so many Pleasures in my life both simple and complex that I am thankful for. And I hope that all of you are enjoying yours as well.

Sunday, November 18, 2007


I generally wait until there is a pair, but have to confess to being overwhelmed by the cuteness factor of this tiny Sock.


Egmond aan Zee "In Egmond little girls were taught to knit when they were very young. As soon as their small fingers were limber enough they began by knitting socks. To inspire enthusiasm for the work, their mothers would conceal pennies in the ball of sajet*. Since sajet was sold in skeins which had to be wound into balls before knitting, it was not difficult to hide a few pennies in the ball. The little girl was allowed buy candy with her pennies as soon as she had finished knitting the ball of yarn. To get their rewards as quickly as possible the girls would stand and knit on their front stoops before going to school in the morning."

* Sajet - "The wool of a sheep bread for meat, such as the Dutch Texelaar, from the island of Texel, is short and fairly rough. To spin good yarn from it, it must be tightly twisted. The technical term, in Dutch, for this firm twist is sajet."

Henriette van der Klift-Tellegen

And we just want them to make their bed and rinse the dishes. Not to mention the number of Adults who are afraid of sock knitting.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Sunk so low

I've apparently become one of Those Kind of People. TAOs grandparents are forever after us to send pictures. Except he and are not really the type that take pictures of us, we take pictures of what we saw, liked, whatever. Even less do we take photos of us together - that requires a third party. So my brilliant idea of making them a calendar for the holiday gift was challenging. And -sob- I admit that in order to get 12 months I had to put the Cairn terrier on June and the Australian terrier on September. We've become the kind of people who send pictures of their dogs. Next year they are getting the usual Harry and David.

Last week's ennui was cured by the following: I cast on the Thanksgiving Shawl from ElegantEwe. I bought this pattern at last years Stitches East. I ripped back some of the Felici sock and added cross cabling to the instep. And on Tuesday I cast on Cat's Little Sky Sock. I crammed this into my lab coat pocket, had Wednesday off, and just in the time spent waiting for elevators got to the toe starting point.

Despite being on call some progress was made on The Adored One's Fugl sweater. This is definitely "end of sofa" knitting. It is an easy chart to follow but since it's meant to be used in lieu of a jacket, it weighs twice what my ego does. Definitely not for the weak of wrist.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Kindly talk me off the Ledge.

I have this great hand spun in Biscotti that I got from Susan. I had spun it up and divided it for socks for The Adored One. I started knitting these and no offense there TAO but this is too colourful for you. It would however be lovely as a FlowerBasket shawl. Someone please intervene before I cast on another Non Portable project. Evil Evil Temptation thy name is Knitting.

Being of course, the Traveling Knitter, I engaged in Knitting Tourism and hit some new yarn stores. I managed to buy very little by looking at my list of UFOs before entering each store.

I went to one store that will remain anonymous chiefly because...well...I don't recommend it. It's hours are advertised as opening at 10am. I got there around 10:20. I go to the door. Locked. Written on the store hours it says "10-ish". What is That? So I walk around the store looking in the windows. Dark, dead plants, cobwebs, dirt-not dust-dirt. I think to myself "Maybe the Owner died." So I walk back to my car and am looking at the phone book and map deciding my next steps when a car pulls up, parks, out gets a lady and goes to the store. Hmmn. I wait about 10 minutes, get out, and find her waiting at the door. She wants to know if the store went out of business. We laugh and head back to our cars. comes the shop owner. She opens up. Very friendly, helpful, nice. But there's dog poop on the floor, and I was afraid to buy yarn because of M-ths. I did pick up a slightly battered copy of Knitted Lace Workshop for cover price. And if you are looking for an 80s knitting book, good chance she'll have it.

I went to Kirkwood Knittery. Nice selection. Very friendly ladies. I would go to stitch nights there if it wasn't so far away. The samples were generally elaborate and amazing.

And, within vigourous walking distance, Knitty Couture. Gracious, Zen clean simplicity. I did buy some Merino Silk Top in Glacial Green, which is much nicer than the website shows. More of a pale celery. I am spinning singles which two ply into just under sportweight. I could see myself walking to this store, sitting for a while, and walking back. There's some Horizon Merino that might need re-visiting.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Ripped and reincarnated.

A genuine boy scarf. 24 stitches in stockingette, stitches picked up all around on a 4 to 3 ratio 6 rows of seed stitch and a reverse crochet bind off. Used two balls with just a trifling left over.
The teapot is silly really, just tiny for one person. But it's a refreshing touch of dainty whimsy in an otherwise stressful and detail oriented life.
The yarn is Australian Merinos Printed colour #1006. I love this yarn. Sproingy, forgiving, soft, and a great guy colour. Deep brown with airforce blue and camel. I wish I could buy a sweaters worth for me without feeling guilt. I only bought two balls back in buffalo because the yarn store people were so snooty to me that it hurt just to buy that. But I had a vision in my mind that didn't survive the actuality. So this yarn held up to being ripped more than once, without showing wear. The hand is great. It will be almost a shame to give away the scarf. I tell ya', the things I do for love.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

That wasn't a gunshot,

it was just the sound of my plan backfiring. Back in October when I packed for this trip, I carefully packed my knitting projects. Planning to shift somethings off the UFO list and finish up some larger items.
Aarghh! I outwitted myself.
I have a Lopi steeked cardigan for TAO that weighs roughly 7 lbs and requires a printed-in-colour chart. There is Lillian with the 36 row lace chart. The Vogue cardigan with multiple shifting cables, waist and bust darts. The Jellyfish (round shawl) with 197 row lace chart.
None of these are portable. None of these are work out a stress reduction row at lunch. All of these fail as a Jewish Rosary. All are going to be very nice someday, but they are not soothing my spiritual knitting needs. Curses!

I am not on a Yarn Diet but as part of Enough I am looking at what I have and how to enjoy it. Perhaps some socks for pocket knitting and a garter stitch shawl eh? I feel Startitis coming on.

I would like to say that I received outstanding customer service from Amazon this week. I ordered late Wednesday night and received on Friday with free shipping. This was after many phonecalls and gallons of gas trying to get the books from local stores. Among the items I treated myself to was Creative Spinning. It's rather like a cookbook for skeins. There are large colour closeups of the yarns with recipes for what colours in what amounts to blend and get those results. It even shows knitted swatches of the finished yarn. It assumes you are already fairly proficient at spinning, so it is more of a travel magazine for me right now. Good for the creative juices.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Election recap.

After a week filled with days of interesting behaviour models demonstrated in their natural environment, allergic reaction to the Flu Shot, and nights filled with nightmares (car crash, stalker, fire, sudden death) I decided to spend the time and money and drive home to be healed by The Adored One. Was it a prudent use of time and fundage? No. Was it worth it? Absolutely.

I got very little knitting done for many other reasons. I spend some of my home time fondling the stash, telling myself lies and, ignoring Enough. I knit 4 feet of a gift scarf, unraveled it and have most of it's new incarnation done. I started the Ribwarmer in my Blue Moon Twisted, it striped and puddled very unattractively so I reballed it. The holiday gift purchasing was wrapped up by a supplemental gift card and grafting the tips of these mittens:

They are made with Palette and are planned as dog walking mittens for my best friend whose dog is like other people's children. The band design and construction are from
Komi Mittens but I opted to change the finger patterning into something that could be crammed into a pocket, pulled out and carried on with, chartless. I used them as a tension experiment in that in one mitten the tidepool colour is carried on the bottom and on the other mitten the natural is the bottom colour. It doesn't show much in the photos but it truly makes a difference in hue dominance. I can see it, but no non knitter has seen it, even when pointed out so I don't think she'll notice. And even if she did, she'd never say anything to me.

So that leaves the insertion of the photos into the calendar and the posting of parcels left, and the holiday cr-p is done.