Friday, March 28, 2008

Coffee and string

Friday evening; the work week completed. Anything not taken care of before I left will wait on my desk and greet me Monday.

How to relax? Well for me it's coffee and string! I found some nice lace doily patterns that I'd like to try.....sometime. I don't expect to start them tonight.

The lace group has a workshop this weekend. Once again I have not signed up for any classes. However, there will be vendors there. Vendors with lots of nice string and all manner of 'odd' books. Books that one seldom gets to see, at least around these parts. The titles are calling out to me now, I think. So I don't want to start anything (else) in case I come home with something and just itching to start it.

Last year I bought Myrna Stahman's book and had a lovely time making a Faroese-shaped shawl. What will tempt me this year??

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

I'm sorry, Evelyn

You can't tell much from this tiny picture, but don't worry, you aren't missing much. I think I should aplogize to Evelyn Clark. The pattern, Angel Lace Shawl (#S-2018) is absolutely lovely.
I ordered immediately after seeing this lovely one at Shut Up & Knit's blog.
And what drew me to it first is the almost 3-D effect of the pattern. Sadly, I'm afraid, all this will be lost in this particular yarn's colors. All obscured.
I think the eye sees color first over pattern. Do you? I also think that non-knitters, especially, will see color first instead of pattern. People that are not repeating-patterns obsessed like me may not even notice it has a pattern. And that's a shame, because Evelyn has a beautiful design here.
But I am going to go ahead and finish it. Who knows? Maybe it will surprise me in the blocking. And even if the pattern is obscured by the colors, the colors are really deep, saturated, and wonderful. And it will be just as warm and soft.
In the meantime, I'm really keeping my eyes peeled for some lovely yarn. I'd like a fingering weight. Something kinda like this!

Friday, March 21, 2008

Welcome, Spring!

A blue, blue sky and all the trees are putting out buds and leaves. Spring is here and Easter, too.

If you came here from
Mary's nice blog and you aren't Mary [a very slim possibilty!] won't you please say 'hello'?

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Little Flower Girls

Today's stringplay is a bit of naive embroidery. And, yes, that's a hoop I'm using! I am nothing if not inconstant. I've mentioned before that I dislike using hoops, but these little blanket-stitched flowers really need the tension of the hoop.
{make me bigger to see my smiling faces}

This will be a small envelope 'purse'; not so much a real purse actually as a little envelope for a sewing basket to contain a few skeins of floss or a packet of needles perhaps.

The design and pattern ["Seeds of Love" by Brenda Ryan] is the first I've worked from a really beautiful book, "Irresistible Embroidered Bags" which is a collection of 16 projects originally appearing in various Australian needlework magazines. These Australian publications are simply beautiful in their presentations, photographs, and stylings.

I've had the book (and the one previous to it) for some years and this is the first design I've taken time to try. It's also the easiest and quickest I might add. But I've already gotten my money's worth out of the books from all the time I've poured over them and enjoyed them.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Wash on Monday

Some time back I found the Little Houses dishcloth pattern and loved it so much I decided to make a complete set in all solid colors. By the time I had collected more solid colors and knit the second one, I decided it would be more fun to make them using different patterns.

Then I decided to make seven, one for each day of the week, for a new bride. I'm not kidding myself. I seriously doubt she'll be that thrilled to receive them. I rather fear she'll hate them and hardly know how to seem thankful. Still I think they are quite useful, so who knows?

Would you like to make some, too?

Red and blue ones on each end: Little Houses
Bright green: Checkered
Eye-searing Orange: Lacy Mock Cable Cloth
Tan: Harry Potter Golden Snitch (she's a big Harry Potter fan!)
Yellow: Alex's Cloth

Gee! When did they knit??

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Irish Berries Pin Pillow

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

There is very little green on this embroidered pinpillow, but the name of the design is Irish Berries. [Actually the full name is Irish Berries Bridge Box*, but I chose not to insert the stitched piece into a mahogany box.]

A few years ago I decided I had quite enough embroidery patterns, whether singly or in various needlework magazines and that, whenever I could, I would use them whenever I needed a design for stitching. I think the idea was floating around blogs I was reading at the time to "use what you have" and it made lots of sense to me.

Whether it is knitting books and magazines or designs for other techniques, I'm sure you sometimes feel like me that more comes IN that you love and long to do than you have TIME to do. There will always be new, enticing designs, but I am trying to go back through the resources on hand and pick out things that appealed to me at the time.

It's just as satisfying and $aves $tring money, too!

*design by Kandace Thomas; Dec. 1997 BH&G Cross Stitch & Needlework magazine.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Stormy Weather

Some crazy, stormy weather in the metro area last night and today, but nothing to worry about here on the cul-de-sac.

No stringplay accomplished last night; just reading and winding down from the week. Today, however, I went out for string. Yeah!

A new Evelyn Clark pattern came home last week. Today at the LYS, Knitting Emporium, I found a hank of Cherry Tree Hill suri alpaca in the Indian Summer colorway. I'm hoping it will work up into a wonderful Angel Lace Shawl by the time the real Indian Summer rolls around here.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Safe Return

Revisiting another back-issue project in "Piecework" magazine. This time it's Safe Return mittens, a project by Robin Hansen. This is from the (unavailable) Sept/Oct 1997 issue and is another one of those that I've studied and thought about for years! These mittens use 6 different shades of blue and gray yarn. [I see there is a kit at Nordic Fiber Arts.]

Now the last thing I need here in GA is a pair of thick wool mittens. No wait a minute. Let me rephrase that. The last thing I need here in GA is a third pair of thick wool mittens! Why then am I so intrigued with the pattern?! Two words: repeating pattern.

Today (10 years later!) I decided to get the book at the library (Juvenile fiction), an excerpt of which precedes the pattern. The jacket says that the story was inspired by a true incident in 1824 on the island of Gotland in the Baltic Sea which the author, Catherine Dexter, discovered while reading a book of knitting patterns [The Swedish Mitten Book: Traditional Patterns from Gotland, by Inger and Ingrid Gotfridsson.]

It's a lovely story and takes place just before Christmas. I think this will become one of those small volumes that I re-read every year at Christmas. Now I just need a 12-year-old girl to share it with. It just occurs to me that my girl was 12 in 1997 - but I wasn't knitting and I never followed up on the book. Sigh.

Once again my timing is way off.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008


c: a work of fine or elaborate craftsmanship

This is the third definition given by the Merriam-Webster online dictionary and it could not better define this sock pattern. Ah, Evelyn Clark, how I love thee. All this time I had been thinking that Evelyn Clark designs the most wonderful shawl patterns. But then I decide to try this sock pattern by her and it is every bit as wonderful and fun as any Swallowtail or Flower Basket. It is a delightful confection.
This is the Scalloped Edging and two repeats in of the Waving Lace pattern -Waving Lace sock pattern from the Spring 2004 Interweave Knits or the Favorite Socks book.
I'm using some cream Regia Silk that I had first thought to use for either the Latvian Socks (picot edge) or another Nancy Bush pattern. But I've been looking at this pattern for a long time now and it was time to try. Boy! Am I ever glad I did! It is so soft and so yummy. Will I be able to part with these as I plan?

Saturday, March 1, 2008

a knitting lull

With the Arctic Diamonds shawl complete, I was a bit at a loss of what to cast on next. I thought I would be visiting a few yarn stores in the next few days and I hestitated to start anything in case I found a really exciting yarn or project and wished I had waited.

So instead I went to the drawers to see if I had any design and possibly some linen for gift. I found both, so I started this little bit which is planned to become a small pin pillow.

I liked the pattern when I saw it in 1997 in the magazine. I thought it would be fairly quick to stitch. But I settled on some linen a bit finer in weave than specified and the flame stitch requires meticulous counting. Bah! That means I'm using the around-the-neck, really annoying, magnifier. I'm almost done with round three and only have the dark green outer round to go so soon I can dispense with the noose. Then I'll only have the interrupted four-sided stitch 'frame' which is a much faster stitch to make.