Tuesday, October 30, 2007

It's Halloween

Want to hear something really scary and creepy?

I spent the day knitting......with Fun Fur and novelty yarn!


Several years ago when novelty yarns were really novel, my sister-in-laws both wanted one. One of them e-mailed this week to ask if I could knit her a pink one. Yes. Pink Fun Fur! [and you thought it couldn't get any worse!]

Next week my hometown is having a "Paint The Town Pink" week to raise money for breast cancer research. Jeanne works at the Woodstock Visitor's Center. Naturally I was happy to oblige - even if it meant PINK Fun Fur!

Trick or Treat?

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Need More String!

Somehow this picture does not convey the wonderfulness of this dishcloth. I just love how these Little Houses turned out. I want to make a set in bright primary colors. I want to do it now. But what have I got? Multi-colored string. : (

Guess I'll have to return to my 'real' lace until I can get to the store. But the store is close, so I'm guessing I'll be back in the dishcloth business soon!

Monday, October 22, 2007

When lace gives you lemons, knit a dishcloth

After the colorwork cap was finished, I didn't have anything in particular in mind to knit. Since I had a half of a hank of KnitPicks bare laceweight left over from the Kool-Aid dyeing sometime back, I decided to cast on for another of Evelyn A. Clark's lace triangles. This time I thought I'd knit a single pattern only - the leaf lace.

I had really been craving some smaller needles and lace repeats. I love this leaf lace pattern and was having a grand time. I wasn't even counting every row. It was so relaxing. (can you see where this is headed?)

This morning I got a row in before work and for some reason thought I'd just count to make sure and, of course, was off! Grrrgh. 97 stitches on one side and 99 on the other half.

So instead of tinking back and fixing it, I decided to grab the Emergency Knitting kit and start a dishcloth. It's still lace, still YOs and K2togs and SSKs. And I'm back to counting, because I don't want to mess up and tink this back. But the difference here is the stitch count is much smaller and remains constant.

The little bit shown above doesn't tell you much, but you can see the pattern here. I'm doing Little Houses-2.

{Isn't that Red Cross bag too cute? Mary from Snit 'n Knit sent it to me in a surprise goodie package. I have no idea where she found it originally. I keep it in the car with a ball of dishcloth cotton, size 7 needles and copies of a few easy patterns.}

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Red Light Special Hat

Pattern: Red Light Special hat
by BrooklynTweed
Deep Navy, Alpine Frost, Pesto, Grey Wolf
Needles: Size 6 dpns
a set of cheapie Susan Bates and one lone bamboo
why, oh why don't Bates come in sets of 5??
A nephew specifically asked if I'd knit a hat. I sent him a few online pattern links and he chose this one. Secretly it was my favorite as well. I loved the warm colors of Jared's, but the nephew asked for blues and greens. I really dithered over the color choices and, in retrospect, feel that the light grey is really too light, but I'm OK with it. (I doubt the nephew will care.)
My biggest challenge was getting the nerve to try the provisional cast on and the turned hem. The pattern was wonderfully written and, thanks to the full paragraph that Jared devoted to the wet blocking, I even did that exactly as he said. [who knows how long it will take to dry!]
I hope it fits. Overall - especially now that it's DONE - I'm pleased. I'll send it off to college to the nephew and will go back to some comfort knitting.
The KnitPicks yarn made this a very affordable project. The hat took almost the full ball of the main color, Deep Navy, but there is quite a bit of the other, especially the light grey and lighter blue; certainly enough (I think) to do another hat with just one more $1.99 ball of Deep Navy.
a little fall color there in the background - a pot of mums my Mother gave me!

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Good news, Bad news, Good news

If it doesn't look like too much of a mess here, then it's due to being 'cleaned up' and posed for the photo.

Good news is that I finally overcame my fear and started the thing. Bad news is that I'm almost sure I picked the wrong yarn (Swish superwash DK) for the inside hem. Good news is that I'm finally past the hem stage and got the provisional cast on released and knit together with the hat. Bad news is I'm not sure if I should have waited one more round to do so. Good news is that it is a tad easier to manage now. Bad news is that I still have no idea if it will fit OR if I'm translating my colors to the pattern properly.

Can you tell this is still a very IF-y project? Good news is I love the colors I picked!
(KnitPicks Telemark in Deep Navy, Alpine Frost, Pesto, and Grey Wolf)

Monday, October 8, 2007


n. Archaic, crumbs, scraps.

Function: noun
Middle English, from Middle Low German orte
Date: 15th century
: a morsel left at a meal : scrap

Work slows down during the week, but cutting and withdrawing threads has begun. I generally cut and withdraw a small section at a time which helps keep the overall piece stable. My orts from this session are in that little blue lid.

Sheri wondered that I could see the work. Sadly over the years I've had to turn to help. You can see in this photo my new aid courtesy of the dollar section at Target! No sense wasting $tring money on fashion! Working in daylight also helps and it's a beautiful and bright October day today. Still a little warm, but a great breeze.

Also under the category of "money well spent" would be my little Uncle Bill's Silver Grippers which are perfect for pulling out the cut threads.

"O suns and skies and clouds of June,
And flowers of June together,
Ye cannot rival for one hour
October's bright blue weather"
Helen Hunt Jackson (1830-1885)

Of Ships

Today's picture is a bit clearer. Still white on white is not the easiest to see. [click to enlarge]

The embroidery uses two weights of thread with the heavier (in this case size 8 pearl cotton) used for the satin stitching and kloster blocks. Satin stitch stars are characteristic of traditional Hardanger embroidery as are ships. Ships (so named because of their resemblance to Viking ships) are often worked in groups.

The ships on this piece are at the four corners of the larger star shapes (see one just below the spool of thread). As soon as I've finished the last ship I can switch over to the finer thread (size 12 pearl cotton) and work any pulled stitches. Then I'll be ready for, what is for me, the most fun part - cutting and removing fabric threads and then the decorative needleweaving.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

A Balm for the Soul

The picture is a little washed out. It was late in the afternoon and a bit overcast when I took this shot. What is it? Well you certainly can't tell from this shot, but it is the beginning of the Hardanger apron; a key component of my bunad.

Didn't know I was Norwegian? Well, I'm not. Where in the world do I plan to wear this get up - assuming first of all that I even ever get it made? Who knows. It's just another of my crazy ideas.

Before knitting seemingly took over, Hardanger embroidery was about my favorite needlework. I still really enjoy it, especially when I have a nice long block of time to sit and stitch.
Today was (finally) just such a day. And what a balm to my soul it has been. Sometimes I fear I am overly fond of spending quiet time alone. I love to sit and stitch and let my thoughts wander.
I don't have a timeline for this nutty project. I thought I'd introduce it here so I'd have something to look back on to help me see how long it takes. Obviously there are many more pieces needed. I may need to do some beading. And I'm gonna need some buckle shoes!

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Ellen's Stockings

Pattern: Ellen's Stockings from Folk Knitting in Estonia by Nancy Bush

Yarn: Regia Silk - color 052
55% new wool/20% silk/25% nylon
200 m/50 gr - not all of 2 balls

Needles: Size 0 bamboo dpns

Love, love, love the pattern (except for the heels). Yarn feels great so I sure hope it holds up well to wear. In spite of this particular heel not fitting my heel that well, I'm still very happy with this project. These were lots of fun to knit and I'd happily knit this pattern again. I like how the back eyelet ribbing does not continue all the way down. These give me a bit more confidence to maybe try some of the ones I've been eyeing for years in Knitting On The Road.

Nancy Bush writes patterns so well and so thoroughly. I remember wondering when I ordered this book if I'd ever be able to knit anything from it.

My first try was the Helgi's Mittens I knit for the Knitting Olympics. (I only signed on for one! I know my limitations!)

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Wynnewood Sewing Tin

It always takes me longer than I think it will. But home today and finally finished lining and completing the Whitman's Sampler Wynnewood Tin. I love the gold and aqua in this tin. The pattern and tin was a gift from a friend (some time back).

I did the fun stitching of the little pin pillow right away. And then I remembered this piece of fabric I had and loved that I thought would be perfect for the lining. Luckily I gathered all that together and ziplocked it so that today I didn't have to spend precious time locating all the ingredients. Sort of a 'mise en place' for the kitchen-phobe.

These scissors are too long and the ribbon on the wool felt needle book is too dark, but I'm counting this project done until suitable replacements can be acquired. Those will be easy fixes.

Pictures are a little dark. I think it may rain!

PS: the friend who gave me the tin and the pattern? She ATE the chocolate! Some friend.