Archive for the ‘WIP’ Category

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Little Things

November 12, 2009

Post Halloween Sugar Withdrawals, Strep Throat, Scarlet Fever, Rota Virus, Tummy Aches, 24 hr Bug and plenty of Tween Attitude and Tyke Tantrums.  Compounded with setting up the house, a leaking pipe, a blown alternator and an empty rental unit.  Resulting in very little sleep and an increase in stress.  Additionally, my chocolate intake has increased and knitting time has been scarce these past weeks.

Happily, the kids are climbing the Hill-o-Health, Hubby arrived home and is able to help set up the house, leaking pipes and alternators are easily fixed (though not yet) and while the empty rental unit will hurt tremendously, it will all pan out come tax season.  And so, I am knitting again.  Happiness.

One room I eagerly await unpacking and setting up is the top floor as it serves as our family office and a semi-studio space.  I have to go out and buy shelving, which I am very hesitant to do, due to the financially impeding issues mentioned above.  I will make-do until some of those issues resolve, keeping my stash in the huge, lidded plastic containers and books in stacks about my desk and floor space.

I am still wondering where to house my spinning wheel, Julia,  though.  Somehow, I don’t think the office space is the right place.  But, placing Julia in the living room is akin to giving the 4-year-old a screwdriver and the 1-year-old a hammer to have at it.  Fortunately, the Julia is lightweight and can easily be moved around.  Gosh, I really look forward to spinning on her again!  I want to bang out the Finn and get going on some Cormo.  :sigh:

In my short spurts of free time, I have been working on Knit Study III.  I am hoping to have it ready for December 1st, sooner if possible.  Then I will backtrack to spiffy up Knit Study I and begin putting together Knit Study II.  How backwards is that?

Be sure to catch the next Podcast,  I will be announcing a new Prize Drawing!

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A New Trend on the Forecast…

June 8, 2009

Procrastination.  Even if you don’t think it looks good on you, you still wear it.  In fact, it seems 95% of us (Americans, anyhow) are wearnig the title.  So, if that many are wearing the title, it is a new trend and thus, looks good – right? ;)

 

OK, OK – I’m just trying to rationalize and glamorize my severe neglect of this blog – You caught me :”)

 

So what has been going on these past weeks?  Lot’s in fact.  I’ve been knitting quite regularly, done some dyeing, back at spinning, tackled some felting and had even done some sewing, too!  Of course, all this productivity does not in anyway imply I have shunned my other responsibilities.  In fact, the four kiddos are keeping me on my toes.  And, I find I am as excited as they are to see school and baseball come to an end this week.  

Before I post photos of my latest accomplishments, I want to take a moment and invite you to join me in a Knit Study or Learn Along – I am not sure which title I prefer at the moment but that can be worked out later.  I will go into further detail on this week’s Podcast (which will record on Friday) but for now, details are as follows:

 In an effort to brush up on knitting skills and learn new things, I plan to study the following ( not necessarily in this order – or in any sort of order, really ) :

 

  • Cast Ons: for garments, cuff down and toe up socks
  • Bind Offs: for garments, cuff down and toe up socks
  • Increases & Decreases
  • Short Rows
  • Shaping 
  • Hem Lines
  • Incorporating a stitch pattern into a design template
  • Joining flat peices
  • Freeform knitting
  • More to Come…

 

 I am gathering up all my half-skeins, acrylic, and long-forgotten yarns to begin this study in basic and advanced knitting techniques.

I will use various books from my library when necessary and will include them in a separate post as a Bibliography for your reference.  I may also make reference to online resources, which will also be added to the Bibliography.

In this week’s Podcast I will announce the first study.  We will begin with a basic and essential: Measuring for Gauge.  If you wish to participate, please leave a comment on this blog or post a message in the Destiknit the Podcast (DTP) Group in Ravelry. (a Ravelry link)  

Depending on listener/reader response, I will post study info and possible tutorials here on the blog, in DTP Group or both.  The greatest benefit of choosing DTP Group as a posting place is that we can all share our experiences, suggestions, questions, photos, etc. there.  

 

So, onto hand made goodness; knit-wise, spin-wise, dye-wise, felt-wise, sew-wise:

 

 

 

Unst

Unst - These were pair #2 for DD, knit at a looser tension.

 

 

POMS  – one finished (picture coming)

 

Dyewise:

 

Sacre du Printemps

Sacre du Printemps - I actually dyed this yarn for the fore mentioned sock pattern. But, I can be a fickle fanny and am now thinking this yarn wants to be Sunshine.

 

 

 

Shades of Grape

Shades of Grape - DD has requested purple Spiral Boot Socks. Since I am trying to work from the stash, I kettle dyed some SW Merino with Kool Aid.

 

 

 

 

 

Crayon Sack

Crayon Sack - DS2 and I were truly bored one day. I found a skein of Cascade 220 and one of each type of Kool Aid we had in the pantry. After a very brief instructional (he's watched me hundreds of times), he went at it, creating a beautiful rainbow yarn, he called Crayon.

 

Crayon Sack, closed

Once the yarn was dried and caked, I knit and knit and knit until I nearly ran out of yarn. We felted the floppy pouch and were thrilled to bits when the finished item was 'perfect' for DS2's colored pencils. Crayon Sack, closed

 

 

 

 

 

Felt Fabric from Scratch

Felt Fabric from Scratch - Really! I have a pile (really a plastic shopping bag) full of wool fibers that just aren't suitable for spinning. I thought I would try needle felting but that would require the purchase of more equipment. Instead, I decided to try wet felting the loose fibers to create a single, cohesive fabric. This small sample has given me tons of inspiration for future projects!

 

 

 

 

Cape May-ish

Cape May-ish - Our Monthly Adventures Group had decided to do a Sew/Knit Along, using the Cape May pattern. DD and I thought this would be a great collaboration and immediately purchased a Charm Pack of her chosen colors. Once we reviewed the pattern, we realized the original bag would be too long for her frame. Not to mention our Charm Pack was short 6 squares. We grossly modified every aspect of the project. In fact, this is an entirely new bag, inspired by the Cape May bag.

 

As for Spinning, I have been tackling the Finn, still.  It really is taking me far longer than it ought to get this yarn spun!  But, I am half finished – then to plying.  I am still uncertain as to which ply I will use; either a basic 3 ply or a cabled yarn.  Either way, it will be a new ply for me!

Plus, I have two projects I am designing/knitting up.  I also have the Fat Feet pattern to finish.  Generally, pattern writing isn’t  tedious for me.  But, in this case, just as with the Ultra Comfy House socks, I am fairly certain a seasoned sock knitter wouldn’t need a pattern to recreate Fat Feet.  I am toying with the idea of simply typing my notes into the blog, as I’ve noticed other blogger/knitters do.

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Long Overdue…

April 4, 2009

… We’re at three – almost four – weeks now since the last post, right?  All I can say is, life happens. ;)

So let’s rewind and post a few pictures.

===

That’s as far as I got last week!  Obviously we are now at the four week mark :/

===

There was a whole lotta dyeing going on last month:

Sweet Feet

Sweet Feet, Sherwood

Big Fat Love, Primavera

Merlon

Merlon, Valpolicella

Sport Sock, Lupine Magnifica

===

And then my month was sweetened even more with numerous swap packages, two prizes and a RAK:

Pattern Swap, sent by rebeccawip

Spin Swap, sent by volkat

Spin Swap, sent by volkat

Color Swap, sent by toadyjoe

Color Swap, sent by toadyjoe

RAK, sent by Purr

RAK, sent by Purr

Phat Phlag Prize, sent by Aztecmonkey

Phat Phlag Prize, sent by Aztecmonkey

Broomstick Lace CAL, sent by Palomabella

Broomstick Lace CAL Prize, sent by Palomabella

Saucy Sweet Original Sock Swap, sent by TwinsMama

Saucy Sweet Original Sock Swap, sent by TwinsMama

Technique Swap, sent by FairySari

Technique Swap, sent by FairySari

===

I started Unst by Nancy Bush, Knitting on the Road.  Sock #1 was knit to near perfection, except for some snuggy-ness at the ankle.  Since I have been receiving a lot of questions in regards to tension, I thought this would be a great opportunity to showcase issues in tension and the all powerful gauge swatch.  Sock #2 was CO and is being knit on the same needles with the same yarn at a much loser tension.  Sock #2 is still on the needles and is nearly finished.  Once I have it BO and blocked, I will do a brief write up and post the pictures for comparison and then, decide which sock I like best and knit a 3rd!

Unst #1, just my size

Unst #1, just my size

===

My daughter had been working on a recital for her choir club.  As the recital neared, I learned that her Instructor will be leaving right after the recital to have a schedule Cesarian Section!  With just a few days notice, I decided to whip up a 2nd pair of Saartje’s Bootees.

Musical Bootees

Musical Bootees

===

Ah, I have had lots of messages on this one!  In need of  a better organizer for my circular needles and DPNS, I decided to give a neglected CD Binder Case a new purpose.  So far, so good!  I find that the slots are just perfect for the circulars and nearly perfect for the sock sized DPNs.  The longer 8″ DPNs are also in the binder but don’t seem to want to stay in the binder.  I am working on a solution for this last issue and hope to have all my needles in this binder eventually!

CD Case for Needles!

CD Case for Needles!

CD Case for Needles!

CD Case for Needles!

CD Case foe Needles!

CD Case for Needles!

===

Periodically throughout last month, I received various fiber purchases… so hard to resist!

I purchased some Polwarth and  Shetland from David of Come in Spinner, now South Cross Fibers.  I just love the colorways of both!

Polwarth, Carins fr South Cross Fiber

Polwarth, Carins fr South Cross Fiber

Shetland, Koala fr South Cross Fiber

Shetland, Koala fr South Cross Fiber

I also burned the credit card on some super soft 80’s Merino and a bump of natural brown Polwarth, which I purchased from someone’s destash.  Both are remarkably soft! … pure love.

===

Finally, in this week’s Podcast I mentioned a great cast on for toe-up socks.  I tried my best to describe it for you and then tried to make a video.  After several attempts, I realized a much better way to execute this new cast on and how to modify it for those who prefer to knit using the Magic Loop method.  Enjoy:

<<video coming – – – I hope! — If I find video to be too difficult, I will post photos instead. Stay Tuned!!>>

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IOU ~ lotsa pictures

March 1, 2009

As the title suggests, this will be a photo heavy post.  

So, let’s start with my dye session from a few weeks ago. I had mentioned dyeing sock yarn and roving – I had posted the roving but not the yarn!  This yarn is a Merino Sport Sock dyed in a colorway I am calling Stratosphere, I have two skeins available.  

 

Stratosphere Merino Sport Sock

Stratosphere Merino Sport Sock

 

 

I actually am knitting a pair of baby socks with it right now – it’s knitting up nicely and I am wishing I had taken better notes during the dyeing session :)  I am taking notes on the baby socks will post the pattern as soon as possible.

(photo coming soon)

Did I mention the BFL I spun?  I know I mentioned when I dyed it and I might have mentioned that I was spinning it up – no?  Well I did spin up some singles – 

 

BFL Singles - SoFistiCat

BFL Singles - SoFistiCat

 

 

then I knit up a pair of Saartje’s Bootees for my soon-to-arrive niece:

 

Saartje's Bootees for Charlie

Saartje's Bootees for Charlie

 

 

They are sooo cute, aren’t they?  Surprisingly this pattern is super easy, knit flat in garter stitch and then seamed.  Anyone can knit these purties up and I strongly suggest this knit for the Spring for Babies KalCal!

So, after knitting these booties I still had quite a lot of yarn left, so I plied it up and plan to knit another pair or two for the growing babe ;)

So then I went on and dyed some more roving – this time it was Merino and for a secret Spin Swap for the Monthly Adventures Group in Ravelry.  As of this post, the recipient has not yet recieved, so I only post the wet roving in the sink at the moment:

 

Spin Swap Fun

Spin Swap Fun

 

 

Shopping for swaps is always a lot of fun and often a source of pain (to the purse) as we often tend to do the ‘one for you, one for me’.  I did manage to stay within our budget (have I mentioned that we have a swap budget in MA?), so I am quite please with myself and I even managed not to buy (too much) for myself. ;)  I picked up a WIP gauge from KaratStix and a gorgeous Orifice Hook.

 

WPI Gauge from KaratStix

WPI Gauge from KaratStix

 

Orifice Hook in the Shop

Orifice Hook more in Shop

 

 

 

I also dyed some Finn top up.  It was one of those surprises as the end result is not what I had envisioned, but it still came out rather lovely – a deep blue with variants throughout.  I reserved 2 oz of the Finn to be blended with some Mohair, which had been gifted to me from Tnsinko (Linda), a fellow spinner who I ‘met’ in Ravelry.  The wool is presently being spun for socks… I am only guessing that Finn will create a soft and durable sock and that the addition of Mohair in some of the yarn will make for iron toes and heels.  What do you think?

 

Finn for Socks

Finn for Socks

 

 

In addition to the Mohair, Linda also sent various samples of her Romney sheep, which she raises for her own spinning pleasure ~ Lucky Gal!  I am so very grateful to have made  a new friend, Linda you are wonderful!  Linda sent over 2 oz of processed Romney from her most beloved sheep, Dianthus.  I have spun it up and am planning a special project for it ;)

(excuse the dark photo)

 

Romney fr Linda, plied to 17 WPI

Romney fr Linda, plied to 17 WPI

 

 

 

So what else? … Ah, the kids have spent some time spindling.  I managed to remember to whip out the camera toward the end of the last session… this one is of DS1, spinning up some BFL he had dyed with Kool-Aid.  This is the same son who fashioned a spindle out of Legos :)

 

DS1, Spindling

DS1, Spindling

 

 

I knit up a block for our Monthly Adventures BOM KAL.  The block will not be added to my planned afghan, however, but is intended to serve as a binkie for my soon-to-arrive niece.  It was knit with KnitPicks Crayon, an easy to care for cotton, which I found to be surprisingly soft and not so difficult to work with, for a boucle.  

 

BOM - as a binkie for baby

BOM - as a binkie for baby

 

 

I have already sent the binkie off with the booties and the below socks.  Unfortunately I did not take pictures of the finished binkie, I added tags around the edges, just right for teething babes.  The socks have a story to go with them, doesn’t everything? I will attempt to be brief.  Last July my DS3 was born, the entire pregnancy was complicated as was the delivery – – I will not go into details, this just isn’t the place.  

Bottom line, the Doctor who delivered my son, saved his life.  I was and am so deeply grateful and wanted to express this as any knitter would – I wanted to knit him a pair of socks.  So, I cast on a week after DS3 was born and I scooted right along and then I stopped.  I was at the point where I might start decreases for the toe on a Men’s size Medium… you can see where I am going with this… 

I had no idea what his foot size is and just couldn’t bring myself to ask him.  I did make a ‘fake’ appointment with him, just to try and get a visual… no luck, those shiny shoes really threw me off.  So, I made a wine basket, stuffed with crackers and chocolates and wine of course!  And the socks have sat in my UFO basket all this time.  Well, enter a Sock KAL hosted by fellow MAer Sulkycat and I suddenly find those socks and finish them, intending to send them to Laura, the soon-to-be-Mommy.  I think the socks will be nice and cushy for her tired feet in the weeks ahead.

 

New Mommy Thujas

New Mommy Thujas

 

 

Speaking of Sulkycat’s Sock KAL, I had to decide which pattern I wanted to knit up.  At first,  I thought I would knit the Heelless Sleeping Sock from Knitting Vintage Socks, but I decided to go with a lace sock and learn a new-to-me technique, Magic Loop.  I am going to knit, in fact I will cast on just as soon as I finish this post, Unst in Knit Picks Essential, Green Apple.  The color is almost exactly the same as the color shown in Knitting on the Road.  I chose these socks because I wanted something ‘Springy’ – we are all beckoning Spring in our own ways, aren’t we?

 

Unst from KOTR

Unst from KOTR

 

 

This past week, I have dyed 6 skeins of yarn.  At the moment,  I am waiting for the to dry, then I will take photos and post them in the Shop by next week’s post – stay tuned….

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Spring for Babies KAL/CAL

February 21, 2009

I’ve decided to go ahead and start our first KAL/CAL to benefit Babies. Baby knits are fast and easy and suitable for all experience levels.

Considering the numerous charities throughout the world, I will leave the choice of charity up to you. I am a firm believer in Charity at Home and will accept knits for neighbors, etc to be included in this KAL/CAL.

All you have to do is leave a comment on this post, letting me know your intent to participate and post your FOs in the new DTP Flickr Group. The Flickr Group is by invitation only, so you will be prompted to request invitation which I will approve ASAP.

So, to get things rolling, here are a few suggested patterns:

Saartje’s Booties

Norwegian Sweet Baby Cap

Pinwheel Baby Blanket

Curly Purly Soakers

Berry Baby Hat

Better than Booties

Blue Booties

Preemie Hats

Hooded Baby Blanket

As for prizes, I have one prize reserved but am seeking donations from vendors and artisans… prize details to follow soon…

ETA: It’s been decided, the KAL/CAL will end and the drawing will be held on May Day – May 1, 2009. I am actively seeking prize donations, so stay tuned for details.

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Early Release This Week…

February 12, 2009

… Why?

Because we’re having a PRIZE DRAWING!!!

Maevie has won the door prize and doesn’t even know! hehehe

You can win the next prize – and it’s easy to enter – all you have to do is go to iTunes and leave a comment about the Podcast!  

But hurry – this is a short contest – I will assign each comment a number and then randomly select a winner at Midnight PST (9am Rome) on Sunday Feb 15th. (click here for a time converter)

So, what’s up for grabs?

Winner’s Choice of one of the following Surprise Theme Packages:

  • Socks
  • Lace
  • Spin
  • Mitts

So you actually read down this far?  GO!  Leave a comment!   ;)

 

ETA – Due to the ‘distance’ issue and my wanting to get prizes out ASAP, I have decided to go through a third party to send the prizes out – will keep the winners posted ;)

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A Day Late…

February 7, 2009

… and a dollar short.  That’s how it goes, right?  Well, this seems to be my mantra this past 10 days.  Yesterday was the weekly podcast, I made note of some Previews and ezine releases and what happens?  Today I see Interweave Knits Spring 2009 Preview.  Wowsa!  I am not falling for all the designs but this issue looks really great.  

Connie Chang Chincio, one of my favorite new designers has two great designs in this issue – and one, Soap Bubble Wrap, will be posted exclusively at KnittingDaily.com from Feb 24,2009 – May 25, 2009!  How sweet is that!?!  The other, Silk Cocoon Cardigan, is a ballet wrap-style cardigan featuring trellis cables at the cuffs and shoulders.  Tres feminine, and that, is Connie’s signature.  

 

Silk Cocoon Cardigan by Connie Chang Chincio

Silk Cocoon Cardigan by Connie Chang Chincio

The Soap Bubble Wrap is a wrap cardigan with the Sun Spot stitch Pattern from Barbara Walker splashed on the right shoulder and the left hip.  I love this unexpected detail and can’t wait for the release of this pattern.

 

 

Soap Bubble Wrap by Connie Chang Chincio

Soap Bubble Wrap by Connie Chang Chincio

While there are several cardigan designs, this is the Spring issue after all, there are also two lace designs as well as a featherweight stole.  Also, just what you might expect in the Spring issue.  But there are so many pleasant little surprises in the issue: A pair of lace stockings, an interestingly textured slip dress, an unconventional halter, a versatile shawl (shown on the model as a skirt) by Norah Gaughan, a unique shoulder bag and my favorite surprise, the Baa Rug by Becca Smith, a rug knit from wool roving and fingering weight yarn.  

 

Baa Rug by Becca Smith

Baa Rug by Becca Smith

So this post is really a two or three in one… so please forgive the lack of photos above as I must catch up.

 

OK, last week I mentioned the CPSIA – I want to let all know that a stay has been granted but, this does not mean it’s all over.  What it does mean is we have 1 year to form together to demand the CPSIA is amended.  This also means if you manufacture safe items, you may continue to do so without fear of fines or imprisonment.  Please take this time to educate yourself, learn the facts and raise your voice.  Great info can be found at Etsy.com or ReformCPSIA.org  

Alrighty!

So I finished the Transformers hat and DS2 just loves it.  So much so I have not been able to weave in the ends or block it as he seems to be wearing it at all times.

 

Transformers Hat

Transformers Hat

Oh!  I won!!! I won, I won, I won!! I am sooo excited about this!  Sydney and Marley, of Knaked Knits and Yarn Thing hosted a Holiday KalCal.  There were so many prizes to be one, making the odds of winning even better – thank you ladies!  Anyhow, I won Get Ziggy (ravel it!) from Anny Purls! Yay!  I also noticed two Ravelry friends won, too!  ToadyJoe won the Vogue Knitting 25th Anniversary Book and FariySari won a pattern PDF of her choice from Twist Collective.  Congrats to all winners!  Thanks again to Sydney and Marley and all the prize contributors.

So what else… well, if you listen to the Podcast, you know already!  So, go listen!!  Please post comments in iTunes, pretty please!

 

I am still working on learning to crochet – going ok but I get sort of confused. :/ IDK – seems easy but …

So, I released a pattern – it is FREE!  I actually just sang that sentence to you :) PrivetKnits and I had a little convo and I suggested combining Fetching with Owls.  She asked me to do it.  I did it. The pattern in is called Owlings (ravel it!) And now I share it with you all, Gratis.  I will say, I think I should have gone into publishing because I love creating aesthetically pleasing PDFs.  But, I realize this is not kind to our printers or pocketbooks so you will find a plainer version, more B&W here.

 

Owlings

Owlings

So, I have had a busy-ish week family wise and hadn’t been over in Ravelry this week.  I just left Ravelry – I won there, too!  OMG!  Aztecmonkey hosted the Phat Phlag KAL in Monthly Adventures, for which I knit DS2 2 hats, the blue one and the Transformer one!  That Aztecmonkey had a tough job choosing a winner – so she chose all!!! Yup! She gave everyone a prize!  UnBeLievAble!  Thank you Maribel!!!! (((H)))

I think I’ll end this here, don’t want to dry your eyes out! ;)  See ya next week!