Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Floofy Knitting

I recently started going to Knit Nights at Cameron Village Library, for one of the same reasons I started this blog -- Sometimes you just want to talk knitting. The second Wednesday of most months, 6:30 - 8:30 pm, some wonderful ladies meet at the library to knit for local charities. It is a very fascinating and diverse group, with all ages and ability levels. I'm enjoying it very much; and it has inspired me to do a project I never would have thought of on my own: It's Floofy and Pink. I'm just not a Pink Floofy sort of person!

It happened like this: At our last meeting we were told about a small knitting group in a nearby town that had somehow committed to producing a large number of pink shawls for cancer survivors who will be attending a celebration this fall. The small knitting group immediately had my sympathy, because I too have trouble saying "no" sometimes; and becauseI hate deadlines.

Not only that -- I had a sudden, inexplicable , irresistible urge to knit something large, soft, and pink...

so I did.

I went out and got a couple of skeins of Bernat Baby Boucle, cast on with some size 15 needles, and made it up as I went along. It was such a soft, happy, easy knit! I'm especially happy with the way the picot bind-off looks in this floofy yarn -- nice and scalloped! (Close-up at the top of this post.)

I'm strictly a natural fiber person, generally speaking (Well, I'm knitting the Rogue with a blend but only because we found "The Perfect Color" only in that blend. ) but for this project I thought Easy Care was best.

Here's the"pattern" I used, such as it is. I wrote this out mostly for my own reference, 'cause I think I might want to elaborate on it sometime, but here it is for anyone else who would like to try it too.
Carolina Winter Shawl
(Not too heavy, not too big. Carolina Winters are mild.)
Shawl measures 50" across the top; 36" from top to point.

2 skeins Bernat Baby Boucle
Size 15 circular needles

Cast on 5 stitches

Row 1 : knit 1, yo, place stitch marker, knit 3, yo, place stitch marker, knit 1

Row 2: knit to stitch marker, yo, slip marker, knit to next marker, slip marker, yo, knit to end.

Repeat row 2 until the shawl is nearly as big as you want it. I knit 70 rows.

Border Row 1: knit across, double wrapping each stitch.
Border Row 2: knit across, dropping one wrap of each stitch from the previous row.
Border Row 3: knit to stitch marker, yo, slip marker, knit to next marker, slip marker, yo, knit to end.
Border Row 4: knit across, double wrapping each stitch.
Border Row 5: knit across, dropping one wrap of each stitch from the previous row.
Border Row 6: knit to stitch marker, yo, slip marker, knit to next marker, slip marker, yo, knit to end.

Bind off, using this Picot Bind off:
* Cast on three stitches. Bind off three stitches. Knit 2 together and bind off this stitch as well. Repeat from * until all stitches are bound off.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Distracted Again!

I've been distracted from knitting again, and it's the Knittyboard's fault!

I read about the ABC-along, and it sounded like such fun that my lovely daughter Aurora and I took our cameras and went on an L safari. We bagged a Lion:

He lives on the wonderful Dentzel Carousel in Pullen Park. Aurora pointed out admonishment #4 as we rode:

We decided we were in compliance, since we were riding cats.

At least it didn't say "No horsing around"!

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Safe to come out....

I was relieved to read over at Two Sock Knitters that knitters and quilters are NOT two rival gangs! It gave me the courage to post a picture of the quilt I'm making for WonderBaby (who, it turns out, is only one baby and is a boy!). Here it is, staked out in the basting frame, and I think I like it. I usually design my own quilts from scratch, but my daughter saw one just like this at Archangel Fabrics (sadly, now closed) and fell in love with it. I did the right thing and bought the pattern -- Kwik Scrappy Stars by Two Kwick Quilters; then combed the quilt shops in two states (North Carolina and Indiana) to find enough 1930's reproduction children's prints in blue and yellow.
Here's a closeup of a block, so you can see the fabrics. Just ignore the basting.

Back to knitting tomorrow, I promise!

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Current Events

Yay for the Hurricanes! Let me tell you, I got NO knitting done during that game! We've been partying for two days now... Anyone want to go for three?

It was sad that such worthy opponents as the Oilers had to loose...

Tonight was Kick Back and Recover night, so I did get a few rows in on my main current project, the Rogue, In Reynolds Signature Wool/acrylic blend:
The color in this picture isn't very accurate. It's a pretty kind of light olive; very Elvish. Very suitable for my youngest daughter, who would be right at home in Rivendell.

My current mindless-knitting project is Socks:

And here is a close-up of my nifty stitch-marker. I made my own, with split rings and charms from the local big-box craft store.

They look really suitable on the Rogue, somehow.

Monday, June 19, 2006

And this concludes our Historical presentation:

So, it was a couple of years ago when a visit to ThreadBear rekindled my knitting obsession. (And what better place to have it rekindled?!? ). My first major project was a Misti Alpaca hoodie with an asymmetrical zipper for daughter #3. (Picture coming soon.) This was followed by an onslaught of sweaters and scarves; but we were saved from being buried completely -- my oldest daughter called to say she was pregnant, just a week before the Olympics!

So, I give you my Knitting Olympics project; cast on during the opening ceremonies, seamed, ends woven in and buttons sewed on during the closing ceremonies:
It's made from Bamino Ull by Idena, the most wonderfully soft merino wool baby yarn I have ever encountered. The pattern is from Idena, too. It came from my most local YS, Great Yarns. I haven't managed to find it anywhere on the internet yet. (How odd). My only reservation about this yarn: How colorfast is it going to be? It turned my bamboo needles blue! (By the way, I consider this lovely shade of bright blue to be equally appropriate for a boy or a girl!)

Then, when she was 7 weeks along, my daughter sent the first picture of WonderBaby:

Seven Weeks?...

Maybe I'd better...
I couldn't find another color in Bamino Ull I liked, so I went to my other LYS, Shuttles Needles and Hooks
in Cary, NC and found some bright red Dale of Norway Baby Ull. Almost as yummy!

And this concludes our historical presentation... further blogging will be about current projects.

But right now, I have a hockey game to watch. WAHOO! Go 'Canes!

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Knitting History

Whee. It works.

My knitting history:

I don't remember learning to knit, but I was very young. The first thing I remember knitting was a shawl for Minnie Belle, my mother's china doll, who was allowed to sit in my room. It was pretty ugly, but Minnie Belle didn't seem to mind.

All through my school years I knitted things like scarves and hats.

I also knitted a sweater vest for my high school sweetheart, but the dreaded "boyfriend curse" did not befall us. (More's the pity!) Less than a year after graduation, I married him. (I know, what was I thinking? ) Maybe the curse passed us over because he never ever wore the sweater. It was fitted, with wide ribs, and he was not thin. Picture wide ribbing stretched over a slightly rounded belly -- the ribbing stays wide at the top and bottom but stretches even wider in the middle. The resulting optical illusion made him look like he was smuggling a bowling ball.

He left the sweater five years later. Couldn't have been me. Must have been the sweater.

The marriage wasn't a complete loss. I got two wonderful daughters out of it!

My knitting slowed down during the Single Mom years, but I did make the three of us matching sweater vests. I remember them as very cute, but it was the late 70's or early 80's, so they probably weren't!

When I finally remarried and was blessed with another beautiful daughter, I had years of repressed craftiness to make up for. I got to be a stay-at-home-mom, and I think I knit the child a new sweater every month! One of my favorites was the little teal aran-type at the top of this post. Here are some more:

I made the teal one from a magazine pattern --I don't remember which one. The gingerbread men came from a Good Housekeeping magazine; and the others I just made up as I went along. That last one qualifies as a
You Knit What? moment, I think. But the young lady who wore it is a senior in high school now, and she doesn't appear to have been permanently traumatized by it.

Staying home was great while it lasted, but soon it was back to work again; and... I became a single mom for the second time. Needlework retreated to the background again.

But then, a couple of years ago, I came across Knitty, and then Threadbear (back when it was still in my hometown ), and, well, the obsession returned full force.

Since then, I've made some nifty things for me, for daughter number three; and for my grandson, who is expected by daughter number one in late September. But all that can be for another day! Blogging is way more fun than I thought it would be, but now I wanna go knit!

Fidget Blogs

Hi, I'm Fidget. I'm a twelve-year-old girl trapped in a middle-aged, frumpy body. My favorite things, in no particular order, are mountain biking, whitewater rafting, kayaking, anything else that makes me yell "WAHOO", and needlework.

Needlework? OK, so, I have multiple personalities. The twelve-year-old is in charge most of the time, but the ninety-year-old granny comes out a lot too, especially in the evenings. Besides, needlework helps the twelve-year-old sit still.

I have tried and enjoy most types of needlework, but my favorites are knitting and quilting. I have wanted a knitting blog for a while because:

1. I like to write.
2. You can't talk about knitting with non-knitters. I have some friends who quilt, so I get to talk about quilting, but sometimes I just wanna talk knitting.
3. My quilting projects are large and hard to loose. But I sometimes put a knitting project down somewhere and get busy with other things, and before I know it I forget all about it. (I'm twelve, remember. Out of sight, out of mind.) I find it months later... In one case, years later... And think "Oh wow! I could've been wearing this!" So a blog and an "In Progress" list should help. If I can remember to blog.

So, here's my first post. If it works I'll post again!

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Fidget Goes Online

Ah, yes; blogging. Yet another way to fidget!