Monday, October 31, 2005

knitting the green bunny!

it's a fluffy bunny! or, it's at least angora. i have committed to something! i'm going to knit a sweater. and it's going to fit. i bought this yarn over the summer on a trip up in virginia. it's elsebeth lavold's angora, 80% angora, 20% wool. and, it's the most amazing shade of icky green :) i'd say, fairly goblinesque.

lara yarn pile

after fiddling with some different size needles, i settled on 7's. they're green too!

lara ribs

oh, i forgot to mention, this is the sweater i've committed to ... it's debbie bliss's "lara" from her _alpaca silk_ book. i've been thinking about making it for some time now, and just got the urge to cast on today. (read: i haven't finished my backyard leaves scarf or twisty scarf ... but, i'm almost finished! so, i guess i felt free to cast on for something new, since i almost have two FO's on the horizon.)

and now that it's official, HAPPY HALLOWEEN!

halloween bats

halloween mom & dad

that's mom & dad

Sunday, October 30, 2005

happy halloween!

i know! it's not halloween ... yet, but, i just could not wait! i finally put up my boo blinkers last night. they're on my backstairs porch (which, i use as my front door), and the lights are screwed into the light socket via an adapter. i think i'll have to leave these up through thanksgiving, as pumpkins make yummy pies ...

but, in my knitting world, i have been knitting (some)(not enough)(you see, i'm still unpacking ....). i was a good girl thursday night and cast on for the 2nd half of my backyards leaves scarf. though in the company of some crazy women, wine & wool, i managed to knit almost an entire balls' worth of motifs! (without mistakes!) seeeee .... !

i must get this finished! agent scarlett came by to visit me on friday, wearing hers! and mine? it's still on the needles! (the shame!)(knitters peer pressure)

and, in the panic of the spirit of the holiday, i must finish my curly spiral scarf! it's pumpkin orange! i think i will be knitting on this tonight .... this scarf is from the _scarf style_ book. i already knitted my summer version of this in cotton, and it chokes me. this one is my fall/winter version, in classic elite's miracle. (i like to call it mir-A-Kle) it's a wool/tencel blend, and a bit hairy, but not in a mohair kind of way hairy.

i also opened a bottle of wine tonight that i had planned on saving for when i have knitters over. but, i was low on provisions, so, i popped the cork! what's a girl to do? i've had that bottle stashed for more than a month! unlike wool/yarn, wine can go bad....

the internet/blogger/flickr are not cooperating with me tonight, so two more pictures are not here now ... maybe tomorrow. so, mom, watch out for your picture on my blog tomorrow! (you shouldn't email me pictures knowing i could make them public ;)

Saturday, October 29, 2005

nasty nasty ick

i was looking at my photos via flickr, and found this one. yes, it's not even worthy of a larger image size!

am i the only person that thinks these things are freakish and ugly?

Monday, October 24, 2005


i'm about to run out of here to work. today, finally, feels like fall. we've had a couple of cooler and clear dry days, but today is icky and brrrr! so, i'm wearing my noro cardigan i knitted a few years ago.

noro cardigan

yes, i cut off my head, and the rest of my body. i'm not feeling so pretty today. but the sweater is happy and pretty! oh, don't think for a moment i'm a master knitter getting this sweater made, as i had to make the bodice twice (i made it too small the first time, as my row gauge was off, and in side-to-side sweaters, row gauge does matter!)

speaking of gauge, i knitted part of a sleeve on the big bulky green cardi, and then slipped all my stitches onto waste yarn. yep. as i suspected. it's toooo big! gauge strikes again! i'm getting more like 9sts = 4" than the pattern's 10sts. ooops. that sweater will visit the frogpond later tonight. i'll rip back to before i seperated the sleeves from the body. i'll have to do some math too to get mine closer to the size i want, since it's a stitch gauge issue. but, i still want the length, you know, so i don't have a wide short sweater bunched under the arms.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

progress on my newest addiction

i stayed up into the wee hours last night, just wanting to get to a stopping point i could accept (finishing the first ball of yarn for the project). i did have some problems with the pattern, but after sending emails back and forth to ms. glampyre herself, she's cleared up the initial confusion. so, if anyone thinks they want to knit this baby, the first slipped stitch is not accounted for in the row-by-row instructions. meaning, for the smallest size, when it says to knit 9 (it's assuming you've already slipped the first stitch, and that the utimate stitch count for that section is 10 stitches). just FYI.

cabled cardi flat

cabled cardi close up

i slipped all my stitches off onto waste yarn so i could get the sucker flat and measure it. i know the fit is intended to be "fitted", but, i don't think i want all that bulk under my arms ... so, i'm stalled. i think i will do a couple more increases, but not to get it to the next size, and then maybe a couple of rows w/o increases, just to make sure i have enough clearance under the arms.

that's all for now. i need to be productive in the not-knitty way.

i need to go to bed !

but instead, i'm up playing with yarn ! i couldn't stand to not start on the bulky sweater ... so, i cast on! there's a warning on glampyre's site that this pattern is not for beginners. no kidding! it's not a difficult knit, but right off the bat, there is a mistake in the pattern --- the numbers just don't add up, at least not to me. so, i'm making the adjustments i think should be made, and i've knitted up the first ball of yarn. yarn note : i rather like (gasp!) this wool-ease thick & quick. it's held up against all my false starts (i cast on and ripped at least a few times). i'm using size 11's too, so it's pretty quick. see ...

green cabled cardigan

i'm sure it's hard to tell that it's a sweater, but you can see that i've knitted something.

now that i got my fix, i'm off to bed. of course, that means i grab a small stack of knitting magazines/books on the way to the bed ....

Saturday, October 22, 2005

today was crafty coupon day! and, some things were on sale, so no coupon necessary! first stop, i went to jo-ann's fabric store with my 50% off coupon, and found in their mess of books something i just didn't expect to find in their store...

lucinda guy book

lucinda guy book inside

though i don't knit for kids (i'm a very selfish knitter), i do love the designs, motif charts, and the combination of knitting mixed with illustrations. the book features some critters to knit too.

i had also seen in the jo-ann sales flyer that they sell wool-ease thick & quick. this is the yarn glampyre is using for her latest design, the bulky green cabled cardigan. so, for around $20, i can have a quick knit sweater too!

wool ease thick & quick

i didn't have the intention of getting green, as i really do like the spice color. besides, i think green is my favorite color. (maybe, if i like this yarn, and i knit the sweater quickly, and the sale is still going on, and they still have the spice, and ....)

due to my knitting attention span, i've slowed down on my beautiful backyards leaves scarf. i did finish the first half though! i do like how the ends split for the two leaves, and i don't understand why that isn't photographed in the book --- as much as i love _scarf style_, i sure don't like their photography.

backyard leaves scarf points

what do i need to do? i need to cast on for my sock #2, and cast on for my second scarf 1/2, ... but i want to play with my new stuff!

oh, and on what did i use my 50% a.c. moore coupon? perhaps it was this? yes, i could had bought _wrap style_, but i'm not a poncho girl.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

small progress

i played around with some other yarn today, but had to just finish something. i've been avoiding the bindoff of my toe up sock, ... procrastinating. i found some simple instructions for a cast off for my 2x2 ribbed cuff. i don't know if there is a better way to do this, but it does have enough stretch to fit around my leg ... though it looks kinda ruffled when unworn.

finished dorchester sock

you know what this means now ... gotta start the mate! i made some progress on the backyard leaves scarf. i've completed all my chart repeats (of the first 1/2 of the scarf)(boy, this is getting to be like a sock project), and now get to finish the ends. it's really been a quick knit, once i got over the hump of false starts. i've been good and fixed all my mistakes too!

backyard leaves scarf

since this is a stashbuster project, i've considered knitting up every bit of yarn, but i don't think i really want a superlong scarf --- i already have one of those.

rockstar scarf rockstar scarf close up rockstar scarf twisted cord fringe

this scarf is soooo long that when i wrap it around my neck, the fringe almost brushes the floor. yes, that was my intention. i was inspired by this ...

rowan crochet scarf

as i've often found, the pattern is a basic stitch that i found the chart for in one of my crochet harmony books. i didn't make it as wide as the original, and i made twisted cord ferengi, as, i don't really care for snippets dangling off my knits. i used two strands of a worsted wt. wool/alpaca yarn held together.

what gray la gran needs ....

gray la gran needs a team of committed people to pray for her.

gray la gran needs space pockets (Dr. Smith had them in a Lost in Space episode) which allows you to store things in another dimension and not have them clutter up ....

gray la gran needs no introduction.

gray la gran needs suggestions for dinner cruises.

gray la gran needs Tivo!!!

gray la gran needs bags of power for her six events.

gray la gran needs to refine her swatching skills.

gray la gran needs to be at her best so she can continue in her winning ways.

care to find out your needs? just google your "(your name) needs". i did my search sans alias, and found out that i really need things that wouldn't be proper to post here!

i'm also beginning to like this sweater a lot!

click me to go to her website!

but i really need to finish my sock, start the mate, finish the 1st half of my backyards leaves scarf, and ... lots of things!
it's another absolutely beautiful day here, and i'd love to spend the day outdoors, but i feel like %#@*! today. i wonder if this wonderful change in weather has put me under the weather.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

the leaves are growing ....

2005-10-16 backyard leaves scarf 008

i've knitted through my first ball of yarn, and am ready for ball #2 ! whoo-hooo! but, this is probably a good time to get off my knitter's arse.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

oooooh, look at this!

i got back in my saddle last night, after the fiasco w/the wrong size needles, and actually completed an entire repeat! it's highly addictive. i wanted to stop and take a photo, but just couldn't stop --- it had to be goal oriented. i'll stop when i get to the next repeat! so, i kept knitting ....

2005-10-15 backyard leaves scarf 003

2005-10-15 backyard leaves scarf 006

i love the feel and twist of the yarn, and it has great stitch definition. see the green marker? that was suggested by ms.pinky, and a great help it has been to keep a marker there (it corresponds with the green 'divider' line on the pattern's chart). i don't know if there is a suggestion in the pattern itself that says to use a marker, because, i'm guilty of not exactly reading all the pattern instructions. yes, i know, haphazard. ms. pinky and i had a rendezvous last night, for a late night veggie burger (with bacon) and a beer --- she knitted some on her backyard leaves scarf. i stared at her in disbelief! no! how can she talk and knit this pattern? i certainly can't. i didn't even bother bringing it along, because i know better. i'm the queen of messing things up in social situations. it's two steps/rows forward, three steps/rows back for me.

because of this unforeseen addiction, i've yet to cast off my toe up sock, much less start the dreaded mate.

Friday, October 14, 2005

backyard (leaves) break

last night, i swatched the yarn for my backyard leaves scarf. i decided on size 7's. so, what did i do today? i had multiple false starts, and then, finally got cruising. what did i notice a few minutes ago? oh, ... that i was knitting on the wrong size needles! RATS!
thus, i am feeling highly unmotivated.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

scarves on the brain

the weather has turned pleasantly cooler, which has me thinking about scarves .... i've seen some really pretty ones online lately, such as passioknit's beautiful lace leaf scarf (design #35) from VK SS'05, or sweet georgia's backyard leaves scarf from _scarf style_.

so, i started digging through my stash, and found something that would be luxury scarf knitting ... 5 balls of filatura di crosa's empire. it's 70% wool and 30% silk, and has a very nice twist, looking a lot like karabella's aurora 8. see ...

filatura di crosa 'empire'

backyard leaves scarf

i'm free to start this anytime, as this is stash yarn ! of course, it won't make very good knit night knitting, as the chart for the design appears complex, and i manage to mess up garter st. on knitting night.

maybe i will work on the toe up sock, or my other scarf ....

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

a distraction

i've not been terribly productive knitting, because of this.

fishes postcard

what can i say? i find these fishes even more soothing than knitting .... but, i have some show-n-tell!

tuck lace shawl

this is a machine knitted tuck/lace shawl that i made almost 2 years ago (gasp!). didn't i say here once before how much i don't enjoy finishing ? and that sometimes includes blocking ? i think i just knitted it tooooo long, so it seemed like a major ordeal to block. (it's stretched and pinned onto a queen size bed) but, i was the bad daughter, because i started to block it, but ran out of time, and left it for mom to block! i'm soooo sorry mom! i know it sucks, and you remember the last time i blocked one of these? i couldn't bend over for days ....

tuck lace close up

but, it is very pretty, and has beads crocheted into the short ends. and, i wish it was mine.

people often ask about my maching knitting. some think of it as cheating, but, it's just a different process. once you figure out the math and mechanics, the knitting part can be fast --- but, there's a lot of figuring to do before you cast on, lots of math, and the usual finishing. if you think knitting lace is hard, try looking at a chart for handknit lace, and translating that to punchcard --- meaning, lots of holes punched in a card. geeez!

i'm still working on my sock ... i have most of the leg knitted!

toe up sock 1

i did knit these with size 1's, and probably could had gotten away with 2's. i'm thinking about using this technique with my colorful sock yarn i got in vermont, but with a different toe. and, i think it will all be stockinette, just to show off the patterning of the yarn.

and lastly, while (still) unpacking today, i found this treasure ...

andean hat

my friend, panda, brought this back to me from his trip to south america. i had been years before, and remembered the beautiful handknitted hats, but, i never got one for myself. panda appreciates knitting and crochet, and bought this as my gift. i was looking at it today, admiring the fine fine kniting ... and then i looked inside and wowed over all the ends woven in!

andean hat interior

Monday, October 10, 2005

when all else fails ...

abandon all other knitting projects ! yes, that is what happened. i wanted to try something different with my sock yarn, but for some reason hold the colorful sock yarn precious ..... so, i knitted up my fresh sock yarn from dorchester farms. my intentions were to try something new, and then i thought, "hey, this can be some socks for mom!". but, after "guessing" where the waste yarn should be knitted in, and "guessing" the frequency of decreases for my garter st. heel, the sock ended up fitting me instead of mom. oops.

dorchester farm sock

first of all, this is from lucy neatby's book cool socks warm feet. i've followed a pattern for a toe up sock, with a "bosnian toe". oooooh..... !

dorchester toe

and a garter stitch "turkish heel" ....

dorchester heel

so, i'm on the home stretch now, and all i have left to knit is the leg ... and decide about the finish ... a ribbed cuff? i should title these socks crapshoot?

Sunday, October 09, 2005

problematic knitter

to quote linus , ... "Charlie Brown, you're the only person I know who can take a wonderful season like Christmas and turn it into a problem. Maybe Lucy's right. Of all the Charlie Browns in the world, you're the Charlie Browniest." yes, that's me too, only in the realm of knitting. it's my sock. or my yarn that wants to be a sock. i've tried three different cast on's, and just don't like any of them. i'm actually contemplating toe up ! i've often avoided it because it seems a crap shoot as to whether the fit is good, depending on where you "guess" the heel should be. grrrr. all i want to do is knit !

false start sock

but, my other "no brainer" knitting project is on hold too. i had first cast on 100 stitches for my boucle wrap, and decided after about 4" of knitting that it was going to be too long. so, rip rip rip. now i have 80 sts., and after some math last night, determined that my finished wrap would only be 43" long. i'm not ready to rip now though, because it is boucle mohair. it ripped fine the first time, and will this next time, but i'm not in the mood for ripping right now.

mixing bowl

the black thing ontop of the mohair wrappy wrap is a tuck/lace wrap i knitted for mom almost two years ago. see, i don't really enjoy blocking, so, it's been in a heap ever since. but, i am going to block it before my visit is over. it is a machine knit, and the short ends are finished with beads & crochet.

see, pictures make me look productive, though, i'm really not at the moment

Saturday, October 08, 2005


multi tasking

let's see .... the patternworks catalog,, an 'oat couture' pattern, and my newest knitpicks catalog ..... i've been catching up on blog reading, and take little breaks in between paging through the catalogs, and fantasizing about what yarn i would use to knit my latest pattern purchase .... though, i should be weighing my boucle yarn and trying to figure out if my shawl needs to be ripped (again). maybe this should be called avoidance behavior vs. multi-tasking. hmmm ....

Thursday, October 06, 2005

lacy scallops socks debut

for some reason yesterday, i only showed the toes, ... so, here's the rest of it! i have not cast on for fresh socks yet, but did cast on and knit about 4" of the dark eggplanet mohair boucle. it's mindless knitting, something i'm in need of. don't think, just knit.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

some finished knits

with all the travel time, and just relaxing time, i finished my sockbug lacy scallops socks ... mostly. i did run out of yarn on sock #2, so i sat down last night with some leftover koigu from an old project, and finished my toe. the leftover koigu was a shade of yellow, pretty close to my sock, but i managed to find the length of yarn that really didn't have any yellow in it. so, it's sort of bluish. oops. i'm not changing it. (lazy knitter)

be sure to move mouse over photo

as i knitted my socks, i used my handy dandy yarn bracelet. ms. pinky and i had lots of looks and questions about this as we walked around the festival knitting. i bought this gizmo a few years ago at stitches, from the mannings. they call it a yarn keeper bracelet. of couse you could make your own, but, when you're a consumer at a knitting expo, it's all about instant gratification.

yarn bracelet 2

that's my supersocke 100 100 gr. ball of fun colors! i found this at northeast fiber arts center in williston, vt. what a great yarn store! they had lots of yarns that are not in my LYS, plus a great book & pattern selection --- and the store was very big. i started to knit a swatch for my future socks on my return flight. i think i like the fabric better with zeros, but that's a lot of stitches to cast on! (sock whimp) i want to do something different --- maybe toe up, or something from the lucy neatby sock book.

supersocke 100 swatch

i've been having fun with my photo software ...

the other finished knitting is my fingerless mitts from the green mountain spinnery. i bought the pattern and yarn at the wool festival, and finished weaving in the ends before boarding my return flight.

green mtn. spinnery mitts

by the way, that's how you wind yarn when you don't have a nostepinne (a wooden ball winder stick gizmo), you use the toilet paper roll's cardboard core. pretty fancy, don't you think? i actually contemplated bringing my ball winder. but no! luggage space was too valuable, i needed room for possible purchases.

green mtn. spinnery mitts blocked

green mtn. spinnery mitts upclose

the yarn is called sylvan spirit by the spinnery, a wool & tencel blend. right now, it's blocked and drying (hopefully) near an open window. it definitely smells like wet wool though.

i'm glad i finished the mitts before coming home, as now i feel a bit free to get into some of my other yarn purchases ... the pretty socks, yes, though i'm a bit stalled trying to figure out what construction i want to use. but i also have a no-brainer project -- a big wrappy thing with this wonderful boucle mohair from mohair in motion. it's a cast-on-and-knit-until-you-run-out-of-yarn project, all 625 yards of it!

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

jiggidy - jig

i am home! (thanks to delta airlines ... they got me there, and back, with a slight inconvenience)

vermont or bust

i doubt i can do my trip justice with my report and photos, but, i will try ... we had a fabulous time in vermont. how much wool & wine can these women take? PLENTY!

kaleidoscope yarns visit

i think this yarn shop was stategically placed to delay us getting to the fairgrounds for the festival ... i mean, they have this tent sale once a year, on the opening day of the festival, knowing all the yarn & fiber lovers will drive by and see their sign! i knew we could go back later, so i was "good" and only bought two hanks of koigu for some socks. oooh! what control ... i wanted some cherry tree hill supersock and lorna's laces lace wt. mutlicolor, and some barefoot, and .... i just wasn't ready to buy up yarn, knowing i was heading to some place where things would be more unusual.

pinky in the sky with stars

oh, and they were unusual ! pinky is modeling some lovely handspun/hand-dyed wool from ____ (i forget)(she will have to tell). oh, this booth had such nice colors! i wanted so much of it, in all the colors, to make my own version of the flapjack throw from colinette's toast & marmalade book. the original is knitted with colinette's prism yarn and would cost about $300 ish to make. but, with even BETTER handspun/dyed, it would be less than half that! and prettier! this yarn was in this booth, right next to this guy ...


imagine the joy of browsing through some yarn, and looking up to see this face watching you! i did learn the differences between llamas and alpacas ... they look very similar while they're young, but as they grow older, you can see their characteristics easier. llamas have "banana" ears --- these ears that kinda curl towards each other, and their tails rise in a puff, as alpacas have a shorter muzzle with a knobby forhead and their tails slope downward. either way, they're both adoreable.

i also managed to finish (almost) my socks ...

happy toe

when i finished the first sock, i had 2" of koigu leftover. all i had left to do with this sock was 4 rounds of knitting and kitchner stitch. but, i just ran out. i think i have some other pale yellow in my stash somewhere though. it doesn't really bother me. i'm not sure why i ran out --- did my lace really guzzle that much yarn? were my balls of koigu shorter than the band said? are the knitting gods against me?
who knows, i'm planning/swatching for my next socks though.

olive landlord LOVES yarn

it's not that socks/toes should be sequenced with the appreciation of yarn (and it looks like they're getting a goooood sniff!) but, look at the yarn love ! olive landlord knows a good thing when she sees/feels/sniffs it! oh, she got this lovely hand-dyed fingering wool from another local yarnshop, and i wish i had some too!

i don't have the energy tonight to show it all, but i can say that this was a great trip --- good friends and very relaxing, and of course, fun. i've yet to unpack, and play with all my fresh yarn. i did complete one project already, while still in vermont. i bought some yarn and a pattern for some fingerless mitts from the green mountain spinnery. i knitted the pair starting yesterday, and wove in the ends today before boarding my first flight (which, pinky and i had to be paged for, "last call", as we were lost in knittinglandia). i'll post my goodies later. in the meantime, look at this ...

mtns. from plane

this was a view on the way home. i'm not sure of the location exactly, as to which stretch of mountains this is, but it's part of the appalachians ... and it made me want to be down there walking ....