Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Friday, July 1, 2011

ZiggyZag Scarf

bottom to top: versions 1a, 1b, 2, 3

Yikes! I didn't realize it had been so long since I was last here. All I can say is that things have been happening, a lot. I've had plenty of knitting time, though. In fact, I recently published another pattern, the ZiggyZag Scarf.

I've knitted it in 4 different Noro yarns, but they would look simply smashing in a handspun or hand dyed yarn. It is knitted in one continuous piece so there are just a few ends to weave in at the end.  You can get the pattern in my Ravelry shop as an instant download. It's also available by email in my etsy shop, and hard copies can be found in Mew Mews Yarn Shop in Lafayette, CO.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Darn your socks?

Damn your socks!

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Saturday, March 12, 2011

Celery Green

The spinning jag continues.....
 This is the green wool/silk batt I'm spinning to go with the pink wool/silk I finished last week. I already decided to spin a little yellow for the flower centers, that's all done and I can start on the rose motifs while I spin the leaves.

I finished up the sample wool on the blue spindle and found this hand dyed longwool in a bin I haven't looked through for a while. It's mostly blue and purple with little bits of greenish blue. That's been my jacket pocket carry-around spinning since last weekend. I have no idea what I'll do with this once it's spun, but it might make a nice lace piece. It's got a lovely sheen and a bit of a halo, so maybe a cowl? Don't know, and I'll have plenty of time to think about it.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Ethereal Spinning

I bought this beautiful roving, colorway Ethereal, from Cantrix last month. I've been looking at it, and decided to card it into rolags.
I started spinning these Saturday morning on my 17 gram top whorl Maggie at dance practice. I think it'll make enough 2 ply fingering to make a small to medium shawl. I haven't carded a lot before this, but I really enjoyed the process, watching the colors blend a little, seeing the luster come up, the fibers getting so airy and luscious. Methinks I'll have to explore this fiber preparation thing a little more in the near future.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Spinning Frenzy

Have I mentioned I've gone on a spinning binge lately? It all started with this little gem I bought from ThreadsThruTime on etsy.
It's a truly tiny Turkish spindle, measuring 4" tall and 2" wide. And yes, it spins very well. Stays spinning for a long time.. If I take the shaft out and leave everything else as is, I can carry it in a cosmetics bag in my purse, along with enough wool to keep me busy for an hour and some 4" long size 2 needles if I want to knit something up once the wool is spun and plied. All that takes up as much space as a checkbook. I spun and plied for the entire 1.5 hours I spent waiting at the DMV last month. I've been spinning up all the fiber samples I have accumulated over the years and knitting them into ornaments for the guild sale. I love my tiny spindle so much I went back and got this one:
This is a medium, 6.25" tall and 4" wide. I've been spinning and walking to the coffee shop with this one, and with the shaft removed it fits into my hoodie's pocket (so I can carry the coffee back). In four days of walking I spun and plied the sample wool that came with it, for a few more ornaments I think. All of this spindle love has inspired me to finish up a project on my 35 gram mid whorl Maggie, some Corriedale and silk batts (colorway Rose Quartz) I bought from LunabudKnits a while back.
The lovely batts (people kept asking if I was spinning cotton candy) turned into 8 skeins of fingering weight singles:
 These are destined for a shawl that I've been pondering the whole time I've been finishing up the spinning.Tomorrow I'll show you what's on the spindles right now.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Alpaca Scarf Update

So, way back in the summer, I wove an alpaca color and weave scarf. Suzanne said she thought it was still a little open and should I maybe wet finish it some more? I liked as it was, so I filed it away for future use and left the scarf as-is. It sold in the sale, and in the early fall I warped another one, the one I finished last weekend. I decided to wet finish this one a little more aggressively, just to see what would happen.
Um, Suzanne, was this what you had in mind? I checked my notes, and it was only in the washer for 2 extra minutes. I checked it at +1 minute and it looked exactly the same as it did at +0. All I can say is, stuff happens FAST  in the washer.

And I don't blame Suzanne (so you can come out from behind that big old plant now), she simply did what all of the best fibery friends do, give their opinions. And it was already clear to me this wasn't going to be a scarf. It'll make a dandy bear, though.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Warp of the Month Club

A week or two ago, while looking at my 4 shaft loom with lovely alpaca yarn all warped up and unwoven since September (I think, not sure anymore), I realized I need some weaving motivation. Since joining a self-imposed sock club on Ravelry, I have knitted 4 socks in 4 months and traded encouragement with other folks who have similar goals. I checked the forums to make sure there wasn't one already and started the Warp of the Month Club on Ravelry. In the last week, more than 70 people have signed up and I wove off my sad, lonely warp before the end of the month. Yay!
 It was supposed to be a scarf (or 2, can't remember that either), but I ran out of the dark color partway through. Chose a slightly lighter one, changed to a different color and weave pattern because the color change was going to show anyway. Ran out of the light color later on, so I finished the warp with stripes. Definitely not a scarf, but nice fabric that'll all go together. After I wet finish it I'll start to think what it should be.

Anyway, if you'd like to commit to weaving off a warp of any length, on any weaving equipment (or using an off-loom technique), come on over and join us. Choose your own projects, make your own rules, and weave more. You have nothing to loose but your stash.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Skew 2

I finished my February socks on Saturday, way early. I am totally in love with the Skew pattern by Lana Holden. In the above pic, you can see the inside part of one sock (left), and the outside part of the other (right). See how the chevron direction is different? It's so easy to knit, but so totally cool. All in all, a very elegant (and elegantly designed) project.
bottom of foot (top), top of foot (bottom)

They look odd and un-anatomical on the needles, but once they are on feet, they fit perfectly.
 I really like them in this yarn, too. Soxx Appeal is a great match. The elasticized wool is super-soft, and the elastic makes getting the sock on over the ankle much easier than the pair I knitted in Trekking. I was all set to keep them, but DD#2 claimed them at the last minute.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Dug in Shadow

I finished a Sonja Esbensen shawl on Monday night, the dug from this free pattern. Instead of cotton and size 1 or 2 needles, I used Knit Picks Shadow in the color Sunset. Kevin bought this yarn for me a year or two ago for my birthday. Knitted on size 9 needles and cast off with size I crochet hook, it is very open and lace, measuring 60 inches across pinned out on the bed. It'll relax to probably 56 or 58 when it's completely dry.
This is a 102 round pattern. If it were any smaller, it wouldn't work well for a shawl unless you used heavier yarn and even larger needles. I love how open it is, and it'll still be warm on my shoulders. Next time you see a doily pattern you like, take a chance and knit it large. You won't be disappointed.
 There was only one error in this pattern, a missing yarnover in round 81. There are 3 sets of what should be “yo, twisted stitch, yo”, but the center set omits the second yarn over and if you don't catch it, you'll find you are one stitch short on round 83.

So, round 81 should read:
(ssk, yo)3x, ssk, k5, k2tog, yo, (k2tog, yo)5x, ssk, k1, yo, k1twisted, yo, k1, k2tog, yo, k2, yo, k1twisted, yo, k2, yo, ssk, k1, yo, k1twisted, yo, k1, k2tog, yo, (ssk, yo)2x.

I'll take some more drapey pics when it's dry and unpinned.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Teapot Love

 This is my favorite Christmas present from this year, given to me by my son, Finn. Some crazy middle-aged woman showed this teapot to him in the thrift store and told him it. would make a great gift for his mother. She shall remain nameless. ;) Although it is nothing precious or overly fancy (stamped Teleflora on the bottom, so it originally held flower), I just love it. Makes me grin every time I brew a pot, which is now several times a week.
On that same trip to the thrift store, I bought one of those mystery bags of small textile goodies. Inside, hidden from view, was this lovely irish crochet doily with a startlingly similar motif. Was it fate?

Gosh, what a textile geek I am.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

I made it!

Yes folks, I finished my Trekking Skew socks at 10:50pm MST. Ends darned in and everything!
 I was hoping they would fit Tara or Finn because they both liked the yarn and don't mind wool socks, but they fit me just great. I have a drawer-full of handmade socks, but these are a welcome addition. I don't have any others in these colors, and they look great with my brown corduroy pants.
Not that it would have made much difference to have finished today (or tomorrow for that matter), but I'll take all the little victories that life hands me. I even got to see Craig Fergusen, because I stayed up until midnight darning a hole in my favorite wool socks. I don't usually darn socks, but this time the hole was on the side of the foot, not the bottom, and I noticed it when it was just about 1 stitch gone instead of a gigantic, gaping mess. So now all my socks are finished and in good repair.

I pulled out a  new sock bag this morning, but the yarn weight didn't suit the pattern as well as I thought, so I did some rearranging. I decided the yarn in the bag (Soxx Appeal) would look great in Skew, so that'll be my February. The stretchiness will work well, too. I can make this pair smaller so as not to be a sock-hog, too.

Monday, January 31, 2011

Last day for January socks

I just might finish in time, if only because of the arctic blast we're now experiencing in the Denver area. Not that I've spent any of my day so far knitting, but I did get some chores out of the way. Last night I grafted the heel of the second Skew sock. That leaves the leg and cuff. Totally doable, I just need to sit down and do it.

School is canceled for tomorrow because of the forecast temps. If I get through the second Skew, I can work on one of the other projects that I have been longing to get back to for the past few weeks. We'll see, won't we?

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Lesley's Mittens

My friend Lesley from Maroon Bells Morris asked me to knit her a pair of big, warm, wool mittens. She likes the colors I used in the cardigan I was wearing (blue, green, purple) and her hands are the same size as mine. We share a birthday too, oddly enough. I dug around in the Cascade 220 yarn stash (3+ totes) and found some blues that work well together. Using a light, a medium light, a medium dark and a dark, I played around for a few days and came up with this:
Easy peasy fair-isle stripes. Big enough that a pair of cheapy stretch gloves fit underneath, but not so big that you can't start the car. I think she's going to like them. I know I'm starting a pair for myself as soon as I take care of a little something for Sallie.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Lots of knitting!

This past week I got a lot of knitting done, as well as a little weaving. First, I cast on the larger Sonja Esbensen doily from this free pattern as a shawl. I'm knitting it with Knit Picks Shadow and size 9 needles. It's just over 100 rounds, so it aught to be plenty big enough when it's done.
I also worked a lot on my Kureyon zigzag scarf. It's coming right along and I can make a lot of progress when I pay attention to which side I'm knitting so I don't miss the decreases. ;)

Skew is coming right along. Although it is easy to knit, it's a truly bizarre sock. Here's the foot, about halfway I think:
This is what it looks like once you start the heel shaping:
 I'm nearly done with the first one, just started the ribbing this morning. I tried it on last night and it's very comfy. In fact, all the kids tried it on, too, just because it looks so funky. They all like how it fit, so there may be more of these in my future.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

New Year's Lace

On Thursday I realized I hadn't knitted any "lace" lace in a while and I really missed it. A few days before I came across a free Sonja Esbensen design I hadn't seen before, so I cast on the smaller piece, as "instant gratification" lace. I cast off and blocked it this afternoon. It's just what the doctor ordered!

The color in the top pic is accurate, but the design show up better against the wood table.

I also got a decent pic of my Fairies and Flowers scarf.
This one drove me a little nuts on the second half, so it sat in time out for a while. There are wrong-side decreases on the flower half that I was sometimes, and sometimes not, in the mood for. The finished product thrills me. Just the right length, lacy and beady all over, soft and warm. It's more teal-ish than the photo shows, though.

Also started my January socks today, Skew.