Sunday, August 31, 2008

Sac du jour

I suppose I really should shine that doorknob if I'm going to keep hanging the bags up there for photo ops!

But not today.

These box bags are so quick that they are hard to resist.

I had all the materials on hand so I sewed this one together this morning so I could put it in the post this afternoon.

It's going to my friend, Barbara. Barbara is the hard-working Sec/Treas and newsletter editor of the lace guild - Atlanta Chapter IOLI. And she's especially good to keep me up-to-date even though I seldom make it to the meetings anymore.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Happy Labor Day!

What's up with Mars?

Since they don't make M&Ms especially for the Labor Day holiday, I've had to start in on the Halloween Candy a bit early.

Whether you're plain, peanut, dark,

or almond, have a wonderful holiday!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Welcome to Jojoland

Second Verse. Not the same as the first.

I went looking for some sock yarn. Now I already had a ball of sock yarn (actually two) but I wanted, or thought I wanted, something for a pair in the latest IW Knits. Really I think I may have just wanted to go to the yarn shop. Perhaps you can relate?

None of the sock yarn seemed just right. Instead, a shop sample of scarf and some more Jojoland yarn, this time in fingering weight, caught my eye.

The pattern is "Teal Forest" and the shop sample was done in the wonderful blue/green color shown on the pattern sheet. I'm going instead for this dark purple-y/red that reminds me so much of a pint of ripe blackberries.

Unlike my last Jojo ride, this one doesn't change colors, but only shades within one color. I'm hoping it will block out nicely and look more like the pattern and shop sample.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

I Heart Bozo

Fiber Trends AC-87 by Bev Galeskas
Yarn: Jojoland Harmony lace weight
color HC06 - 880 yds/50 gr
Needles: size 4 bamboo circular
It was a roller coaster while knitting. Every time a new color emerged, I was shocked. That's a lot of color for one shawl. But in the end, I like it. The ball of yarn was only $9 and I used almost all of it, leaving only a little more of the grayish green. That little bit of blue was the only blue in the whole ball.
The pattern is very nice (high praise from an avowed Evelyn Clark fan!). I will definitely knit this pattern again and maybe in a scarf width, too.
I don't have to worry about what in the world to wear with it as I'm mailing this off sometime soon to a woman in England that I've never met. She recently, graciously allowed my daughter to stay at her place when prior plans fell through. It's so lightweight, it will be perfect for airmail!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

I Loathe Blocking Wires

This is the third time I've used my new blocking wires and I haven't grown any fonder of them. I like the neater edges they help produce. I do NOT like threading them nor staying on my knees all bent over for so long coaxing the blunt ends into wet wool.
I do, do, do love, however, this pattern. It's Fiber Trends AC87 - Easy Lace Scarves & Shawls done here, obviously, in the shawl width in stockinette lace. It's three very similar right-side rows and all purl on the back side.
I'm hoping this dries in time to take to knit night tonight because I'm mailing it off to someone before next meeting. I think when all is said and done (yeah for done!), that I may just really like this Jojoland Harmony after all.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Rice Pudding Kimono

Pattern: Baby Kimono by Kristin Spurkland
IW Knits - Summer 2005
120 yds/50 gr
color 98 - rice pudding
3 balls purchased ($8.25 ea) - about 2.25 used
Needles: size 3 Addi circular
yeah. Addi. I caved.
My husband asked if I'd like to make a baby gift for a coworker who is expecting a little girl in November. Well who can resist?
When everyone else knits in plain garter stitch, it looks lovely and modern and chic. When I try it, it screams Homemade and Novice Knitter. Screams, I tell you. But an important thing is that JP is pleased with it; loves the simplicity and loves the color (color??).
The Sublime Organic Cotton is wonderful. Wonderful. It is soft. It is nice to knit with. Some might say it's a tad splitty, but I had no troubles with it at all. And it is labeled as machine washable.
I don't have much experience at all with garment patterns. This one is knit in one piece and has you cast on extra and bind off some at different points throughout. There is a three-needle bind off at the shoulders and then you only need seam the sleeves underneath. It called for Rowan Wool Cotton which I'd love to try sometime, but I liked the Organic Cotton for this time and it was available in the color I wanted. Rice Pudding. Ummmm.....good enough to eat!

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Healthy Obsession

1: a persistent disturbing
pation with
an often
able idea
It's not disturbing really.
I quite enjoy it.
If you can't read the writing on the bag, click to make it larger. Then you'll see that it's covered in knitting terms. : )
This clever fabric was a gift from Kay. (I told you she spoils me!) She picked it up in a quilt shop in Dahlonega on one of her Shop Hop tours. It would make a nice lining to a larger knit bag, but I'm currently working through a Box Bag phase. Too bad the little charm on the zipper pull doesn't show well in the photo. It's a yarn ball with knitting needles!

Friday, August 15, 2008

Momma's Got a Brand New Bag

I don't have to waste your time here telling you how much I love bags and love to make them. I've been seeing lots of these zippered bags around which seem a perfect size for socks and small projects. When I found a great tutorial, I decided to try it out and make one for my friend Mary (wish her a belated birthday!).
No one would describe me as completely selfless, so right after finishing hers, I went the LQS and found these two fabrics. I love the lace patterns on the outer fabric.
These are fun (and quite addictive) to make. Try one!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

The Interview

I've been enjoying reading all the interviews that knitters have been posting, so I decided to ask my husband (JP) The Questions and see what he had to say on the subject:

SP: What's your favorite thing about my knitting?
JP: It allows you to get rid of all your creative energy.

SP: What is your least favorite thing about my knitting?
JP: You're always knitting. I'm just kidding you. That's not really a bad thing and it doesn't bother me.

SP: What's something I've knitted that you recall as being good?
JP: A sweater.
SP: A sweater? I've never knitted a sweater!
JP: I was talking about that little baby sweater. It was really nice. I like your shawls fine, but they're a little bit odd.

SP: Do you think knitters have an expensive hobby:
JP: It doesn't have to be. It could be I guess if you buy a lot of yarn and never finish anything.

SP: Do you have any hobbies?
JP: Me?

SP: What are they?
JP: Fool around with computers and stuff and go to movies and concerts.

SP: If we compared money spent on hobbies, who would spend the most?
JP: Ah! Here's what we're getting to. I've never tried to figure it out. Neither one of us spends a whole lot.

SP: Has my knitting in public ever embarassed you?
JP: Nah.

SP: Do you know my favorite kind of yarn.
JP: Natural?
SP: Natural??
JP: I mean non-synthetic. Natural fibers.
SP: Hey! That's right!

SP: Can you name another blog?
JP: Kay's blog? Oh, great; a two-day old blog is all I can think of.

SP: Do you mind if we check out yarn stores everywhere we go?
JP: No. I really don't mind.

SP: Do you read Stringplay?
JP: No. I have seen it before.

SP: Ever left a comment?
JP: No. I'm lucky. I get to make my comments in person.

SP: Do you think the house would be cleaner if I didn't knit?
JP: No, 'cause you'd be doing something else. You're always doing some stuff. Doesn't matter to me. I think it's fine.

SP: Anything else you'd like to add in closing?
JP: If you didn't knit, you'd always be complaining and I wouldn't get a moment's peace. Not only are you happy, it takes some of the heat off me and that's always welcome. Well I'm just glad you knit and stuff because it keeps you from going crazy and I think it makes my life easier.

SP: Thanks for playing along for the blog.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

A Chance Encounter

Just one night away from home can sometimes be quite restorative. We didn't feel we could be away from home too long right now but longed for at least a quick getaway so settled on an overnight trip to the Blue Ridge Mountains.

Weather really cooperated and it was much, much cooler with fine breezes and no humidity.

Naturally I did a little pre-trip surfing to map out a couple of yarn shops.

Friday I visited The Yarn Circle in Murphy, NC. It was a very nice shop and I was pleased with my few purchases. (There is no way I can start on any of it yet though as I'm a bit buried in WIPs at the moment.)

Saturday was a bit warmer, but still nice and I set off for Silver Threads and Golden Needles in Franklin, NC. Since their website mentioned tatting and cross stitch, I was looking forward to seeing how they combined everything into one shop. Turns out it is actually three shops in one. The front (and larger) room is devoted to yarns and primarily knitting. The center room is weaving and had some lovely items displayed and several looms warped.

I really cannot tell you too much about these two rooms though because as soon as I walked into the center room my eyes went to a Hardanger lambrequin (valance-like piece) hung at the top of the doorway into the back stitchery room. It was a tiny room simply filled with embroidery floss, pearl cottons, fabrics, and design booklets.

And who do you think I there met? The owner of the Needlework Nook, Linda Abel. Linda Abel is a longtime needlework designer. I recognized her name as the designer of several pieces that I have admired and a number of which I've managed to stitch. What a thrill! So many of the pieces that I have seen in books and needlework magazines were there 'in person' for me to see up close. We talked for the longest time. She even has (that elusive of all items; the missing piece to my Bunad) - a blouse pattern! And she took my name and address and offered to share it with me. Imagine!

So you will understand after all this that I didn't feel like I could stay (and keep the husband waiting) any longer. I never got a chance to really look at the Habu in the yarn room or discover what tatting supplies they carried. But we have promised another trip back up in the fall when the weather is cooler.

The piece above is one of Linda's that I stitched from the Spring 1999 issue of "The Needleworker" (no longer published). It was a 2-part feature and seemed like the perfect introduction to stitching the lacy edge. The other pieces of Linda's that I have stitched were given away. But not to worry. Linda so very graciously shared a few of her now out-of-print designs and I came away with the supplies to start another - this time to keep.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Baby Garter

My husband asked if I'd like to make a baby gift for a coworker. Why sure. Why not?
I decided to try a simple kimono from the Summer 2005 issue of Interweave Knits.
I'm using some Sublime organic cotton which is very soft, nice to work with, and is machine washable.
I've reached a somewhat fiddly stage where two groups of stitches are on holders while I cast on extra and work one of the sleeves.
But maybe it won't be too long before I can shop for some sweet little ribbon for the closure.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Hot Tamale

A little random patchwork and em-
broidery here. I cobbled this together the other day in readiness to take to the EGA stitch-in so I'd have a little something (easy) to stitch. I drew off the initials using a washout marker and the amount of work was just enough to last during the short meeting.
What's it going to be?
A bag, of course!
More fabrics by Tula Pink

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Yummy! Leftovers!

Is there anything more FUN than receiving good unexpected and delightful letter or package in the mailbox?
This is what I found in mine. Leftover yarn from Mary and her just-off-the-needles North Sea Shawl.
Isn't that the warmest color ever? Looks good enough to eat. Perfectly named, too - Oregon Red Clover Honey
There are a few projects going right now so this will have to wait but it is begging to be an Evelyn Clark lace triangle. I can hardly wait! Thanks, Mary!

Friday, August 1, 2008


Pattern: Angel Lace Shawl
by Evelyn A. Clark (no surprise there!)
Fiber Trends S-2018

Yarn: Malabrigo lace
100% baby merino wool - 470 yds/50 gr
color 63 natural

Needles: size 4 circular KnitPicks Options

Function: abbreviation
last in, first out

Sorry! As I am an accountant, I couldn't resist using the term (accounting for inventory term) 'LIFO', for of all my current WIPs this was indeed last in and first out. It never even made it to the list in the sidebar.

I needed some plain vanilla and this fit the bill perfectly. Nothing I haven't said previously. The Malabrigo was lovely to work with, blocked nicely, and is still very soft. I think this will be yummy up around the neck......just not anytime soon!

Just before the final cast-off row I visited a local bead shop and got some natural matte beads to add to the points. I think it was just what it needed.
[can't see them? just click top picture to enlarge]