Friday, December 28, 2007

Fashion Shoot at the Park

The Snowflake Sweater looks much better in action than it did lying on my bed. (Dale Baby Book102, pattern10208). It’s a little big, but he’s growing fast! First, there is the high-fashion shot:

Followed by the candid shot :

And, what the heck, let’s have an action shot:

Knitting from Stash : Beginners Luck

When I was looking for yarn for my mother’s Mountain Stream scarf, I wanted it to be really special, so I bought several different brands and colors of silk/mohair blends. Normally I’m a pick-the-pattern-then-buy-the-yarn person so I wasn’t sure how to find a use for the skeins I had left. One of them was KidSilk Haze in a lovely light blue. Then, before I even started looking for patterns, the winter Knitty was published. One look at the Ice Queen and my decision was made! Now that the Holidays are over I am ready to start.

Sunday, December 23, 2007


Finished: a fast pair of little boy socks. Which is good, because the fast little boy feet will be here soon!

(Specs: Dale of Norway Baby Ull on 2 circs, toe up, cast off as loosely as possible for comfort. I made the pattern up as I went along. They match. Sort of.)

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Sometime I wonder about really random things....

Do any of the astronauts knit?

Just think of it – hanging around in midair working on your argyles, with balls of yarn hovering around your head. You could leave a needle floating in place while you reached for your cup of tea. Or would it be a tube of tea?

I think I'll post that one on the Completely Pointless group on Ravelry. From what I've seen of that group, I suspect I'm not the only one who has thoughts about weird things. Maybe they'll share them.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Long Time, No Blog

It turns out that having an empty nest doesn't necessarily mean lots of free time... but things are back under control now. So here 's some of what I've been up to, knitwise:

I finished the Dale of Norway sweater for WonderBoy (Whew!) and several pairs of socks. I did this pair toe-up using Charlene Schurch's Sensational Socks as a guideline; and Jitterbug yarn. Love those Jitterbug colors! Love the yarn, too, for bulky socks.

I also finished the Mountain Stream scarf for my Mom. This was my first lace project and I was amazed and pleased at the outcome. So was she, I think!

To complete my reenty to Cyber Space, I've joined Ravelry. "Fidget" was taken, so I reverted to a screen name I've used on other occasions. "DancesWthRabbits", in memory of our late and beloved pet Scooter Rabbit, who actually did enjoy dancing!

Saturday, March 31, 2007

Empty Nest

I don't get much computer time these days, but I'm not complaining. When Aurora goes off to college next fall, I'll have all I want and then some.

How do I feel about the impending empty nest? I'm very proud of her. I know she is ready to go build a life of her own and that she can be whatever she wants to be! And I won't have any trouble finding things to do with my time. I'm going to miss her , of course, (a lot!), but we're both gonna be just fine.

While not blogging lately, I have been knitting. I made a Helmet Liner for a friend of Aurora's who is in the National Guard, modeled here by a stuffed rabbit. (Battle Bunny? I know, that's just wrong, somehow.) Unfortunately it came out too big and I'm starting it over.

My Jaywalkers are done, ABK (All But the Kitchener) and I'm sure I'll take care of that this weekend.

I put aside my Dale of Norway sweater for a while in favor of more mindless knitting, and made two hat-and-scarf sets to be donated with the Cameron Village Library Knitters donation this fall. One set is garter stitch and one set is 1 by 1 ribbing. I used Lion Brand Homespun for this project. I like the way the finished project looks and feels, and I would certainly wear them. (I have a thing about not donating things to charity if I wouldn't wear them myself). However, I didn't enjoy knitting with this yarn. It's like..... fuzz wrapped in string. I tried several different needle types, but I was always catching my needle tips in a little bit of the fuzz or just the string. I used up all I had, and I don't plan to buy any more.

Then, because Mom came for another visit, I wanted a project without stitch counting so I could talk and knit at the same time. So I took an nice big ball of Bernat Handicrafter Cotton Ultrasoft, cast on for a diagonal dishcloth and just kept going. I finally started decreasing so I can tell you that in the end it will be about 37 inches square and will use up almost 2 12 oz skeins. So, I guess it's a baby blanket or a lap blanket.

Now that I've a nice stretch of mindless knitting, I'm read to take on Dale of Norway again!

Monday, March 12, 2007

Slow but Steady

I haven't blogged lately, mostly because my knitting doesn't change much from day to day.
I'm knitting away at my Dale of Norway baby sweater. The body is done and I'm ready to cast on for the sleeves.
Also, one of my Jaywalker socks is done and I'm almost to the heel of the second one. I won't bother with a picture -- everybody knows what Jaywalkers-in-progress look like!
In other knitting news, a couple of weeks ago I started teaching two of my co-workers to knit. They are both knitting like pros already! One is primarily a quilter (she makes wonderful things!) and will probably remain so, but I think the other has become a serious knitting recruit. She used to do beautiful cross stitch but mostly gave it up because of eyestrain. Knitting doesn't bother her eyes at all, and she's already made several very nice pot holders and dishcloths. The two of us are about to tackle Helmet Liners for the troops. The tribe increases!

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Emergency Hats in Use

Last week, when I heard WonderBoy had outgrown all his hats, I declared a state of emergency and knitted up a couple of fast ones. This weekend I drove up to the Asheville area to see them in use. First up, we have the Spiral Rib Hat in Peter Pan yarn:

Then, we have the Earflap Hat in good old Wool Ease chunky:

He's such a cuddly, happy baby, and his new hats just match his amazing blue eyes!

I had a great weekend!

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Jaywalker Sweater?

So, My Socks that Rock told me it wanted to be Jaywalkers, and who am I to argue? Good Choice.
I can't get over how gorgeous this yarn is. I am so tempted to knit a whole sweater!

Being a grandma rocks!

Wonderboy has grown into the sweaters I knit for him before he was born. The pictures say it all!

Then, the icing on the cake: I got a phone call saying "He's grown out of all his hats!" So I grabbed a spare skein of Peter Pan and whipped up an emergency hat. I used this pattern, but added quite a few stitches to make it bigger. Very soft and very cute! I mailed it off yesterday. I'm going to make at least one more to take to him when I visit next weekend -- something with ear flaps, I think.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Not too swift, but it works...

No swift, no ball winder, no kid handy to signal a touchdown for fifteen minutes while I wound up my skein of Lorna's Laces. What to do? I found a new use for my Pilates ball:

Yes, this means the first sock is finished. I like it. It looks kind of reptilian!

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Oh, yes it does!

[Edited because Flickr mixed someone else's pictures in with mine. How weird is that??]
My skein of Socks that Rock arrived today, and yes, it rocks! Pictures simply cannot do justice to the colors in this yarn. I won it complements of January One and Blue Moon Fiber Arts; and it came with one of Cara's beautiful note cards. Can she take a picture or what?!? Thank you Cara and thank you Blue Moon!

I can't wait to see how this incredible yarn is going to knit up, but I'm being firm with myself and finishing my Lorna's Laces/Falling Leaves socks first. As I mentioned in my winning comment on Cara's blog, I have good use for toasty warm hand knit socks. The heat is out at work, and they don't expect it to be fixed for a few more weeks. This is not the problem in central North Carolina that it would be in, like, Wisconsin; but it is still pretty chilly. The up side is, I get to wear all the winter things that usually stay in the back of my closet.

My new and adorable grandson, on the other hand, lives in the chilly highlands of North Carolina, and so should get lots of use from everything I can't seem to stop knitting for him. This one, however, has slowed me down some. What you see here is the result of an entire snow day spent knitting, plus two evenings of knitting-and-classic-movies! It's a good thing it's size 18 months and he won't need it until next fall!

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Soooo much better...

So, I kept looking at my Falling Leaves socks and they just didn't look right. I kept going back to the chart, adjusting my tension, changing needles; but they still looked weird. I went blog hopping to see what everyone else's looked like, and sure enough, they didn't look like mine. Finally, totally frustrated, I reread the entire pattern out loud, word for word. What was I missing? One sentence: "Chart only shows odd numbered rows, k all stitches on even numbered rows, k all stitches for bottom of foot." Doh! So I frogged them back to the toe and started over. They look better now.

Then, there is this. I had been reading about it, but I had to try it myself to understand just how addicting stranded colorwork is! I have to be careful when I pick it up, because I almost can't put it down. (Notice the nifty true-color enlarged chart in the background. I made it in Excel.)

It hasn't been all knitting here though. The weather has been on the cold side for North Carolina but very sunny and clear, so I took the Lowas out for a little spin:

One of the best things about living in Raleigh is that I can be downtown in 15 minutes, or I can be here in 15 minutes:

And I have a great time in both places.

Maybe I should take my standed colorwork, hike down to the creek again, sit on this rock and knit.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Ready for the big time?

So, I practiced color work by making the We Call Them Pirates hat. Do you think I'm ready for this?:

It's sweater 10208 from Dale baby book #102. I've cast on, but haven't made it out of the ribbing yet. With the lightweight yarn and the leeeetle needles, it sure is a long way around!

I'm using Dale Baby Ull in a Royal Blue and a Light Gray. I had a hard time with the swatch, because in the chart the symbol for the light color is darker than the symbol for the dark color, and I just couldn't wrap my poor dyslexic brain around it. So, I recharted it using Excel. I resized the cells to the right proportions and colored them in with blue and gray. From then on it was a lot easier. It printed out a lot larger than the chart in the book, and that helped a lot, too! Also on the needles, Falling Leaves Socks from Knitty, in Lorna's Laces Shepard Socks color Ravenswood.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Pirates and Treasure


Here's Aurora running off to sea in her We Call Them Pirates hat. She chose the yarn -- Dalegarn Falk in a dark purple and lavender -- and I knit the hat. I did 2 repeats of the rows Jolly Rodgers instead of 3, so it's more of a skull cap. (And that may be the worst pun I've ever made.)(Which is saying a lot!)
I can't believe it! I won some Socks that Rock in the contest over at January One. Thanks Cara! It's my first skein, but I have a feeling it won't be my last!

Saturday, January 13, 2007

We Call them Girly...

... just not to their faces! I've joined this:

because I want to get better at multicolored knitting and because my senior-in-high-school daughter loves all things piratey. She's chosen GIRLY colors for her hat: dark purple and lavendar. ButI had an idea for even girlier pirates and just had to swatch it with random stuff from the stash :

I'ts Bernat Softee Baby in variegated pastels, contrasted with a mystery yarn in black. I love it! I may make this one for me... with sparkly little beads in each eye socket.

In other news, I've finished my Broadripple Socks. I used Cascade Fixation, in variegated purple. We seem to have a thing for purple around here.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Lace and ADD Don't Mix

So, I've started the Mountain Stream scarf three times and ripped it out three times. As a card-carrying person with ADD and someone who can't even end a k1, sl1 row on the right stitch, maybe I shouldn't be doing this. I've put it aside for now, and during the quiet evenings of late January, I'll try it again.

In other news, I've obviously forgotten to post for a long time. First, there was this: I did it! It's nothing anyone would ever want to read, but it sure was fun!

Then there were three visits to the mountains of Western North Carolina (and my grandson, of course!); a very welcome visit from my mom; and a totally unwelcome visit from a mouse. The latter sent me into a cleaning frenzy. I scrubbed and relined every drawer and every shelf of every cabinet in my kitchen; and I washed everything they contained in hot, soapy bleach water. Except for my dishtowels and dishcloths. That was the drawer where the mouse met his untimely end. I threw out all my kitchen linens and bought new ones. Fortunately, none were handmade.

Then there were the standard Christmas activities and the standard year end activities.

Anyway, all that kept me busy. I did try to knit a pair of Jaywalkers from some Lana Grossa in a colorway that reminded me of Japanese Maples in the fall; but somehow it was not a good mix of pattern and yarn. My brother asked me tactfully if I had any blind friends to give them to. They look a lot better in the picture than in person.

Also, I think I misread the pattern. The ankle is too tight and the foot is too loose. I'll frog it and maybe try just a pain ribbed sock.

I'm having better luck with the Broadripple pattern. I love the pattern, I love the fit, and I love the yarn. It's sproingy!

So there, I posted... and will try to get back into the habit.