Thursday, August 31, 2006
I'm getting to the tricky bit on the vest. Since the pattern is written to be knit flat, I intend to graph out all the shaping for the armholes, v-neck and the back of the neck. My plan is to have a clear idea of what shaping to do and when to do it before I start to knit. Which would be an improvement over my typical method of just winging it!
Tonight I took the boys shopping for school supplies. The cooler weather had a few people wearing their sweaters which got me thinking about what I'd like to knit for myself. In the first place I knit myself a Ribby Cardi that I'm planning on lengthening. It fits nice everywhere, but I just don't like the cropped length. REDO! A lot of the clothes in Wal-mart have embroidery on them. That and reading Dances with Wool inspires me to think of embellishing it.
I'd really like some more cardigans that fit. That is my goal for this winter. Last winter it was to knit something special for my husband, Mom, Dad and Mother-in-law. The only other sweater I knit to fit was Rogue, but I got the yarn on sale and while it is so soft, it pills like a bugger. I'm tempted to knit it again. It would only be my third time.
Do you want to hear my shameful secret?
The first time I knit Rogue I was so excited, and I felt I was worth any price, so I bought 13 skeins of Manos del Uruguay in color 100. I wanted the sweater to come out bigger so I just knit at a larger guage. Needless to say, it came out too big. So I felted it. Are you wincing yet? Screaming? The price! The soft beautiful yarn! The hard work! The felting horror melding my gorgeous cables!
The sweater hides in my closet where I bring it out when I'm sick so I can hide in its hood like a turtle in her shell.
Wednesday, August 30, 2006
Here's the progress on the sock I started last Monday. I'm not dedicated to knitting this. It's just what I work on when nothing else will suit. Sort of like twiddling my thumbs. I did knit on it in a traffic jam this morning. I wonder if anyone in the other cars ever looks over and thinks "WTF?" Or maybe they think "Lucky...."
So this is the love of my life right now. A vest for my father. Here is the outside.
Here is the inside. I brought it to Monday Knit night and the first thing Lynn and Darian did was turn it inside out. So I thought you might like to see too. Those strands are where I'm tying in new yarns. I'm not sure that's the right thing to do, but it's what I'm doing.
Here's the steek on the right side. The colors aren't true in this picture.
The pattern is from "Traditional Knitting from the Scottish and Irish Isles", edited by Debbie Bliss. For some reason the instructions are telling me to knit this flat. As if. I'd hate it if I did that. But when you pick up the button band, it actually tells you to pick up 2 stitches in and then sew down the selvedge. Sounds like a carry over from a steek to me!
So I'm not too worried about how messy or awful my steek looks. I'll pick up a couple of stitches in, cut and sew. Actually I am worried that I made my steek too wide and that I will some how run out of yarn because of it.
But I love working with the Jamieson and Smith yarn. I'm not sure what it is about it, because it's not the softest stuff. But it does make my knitting look beautiful. The resulting fabric is light, yet dense and has a lot of drape, considering.
Tuesday, August 29, 2006
Yowza! You don't see knitting like that everyday.
Do you want to know who won first prize in the professional category?
That's Sally Melville's work people. Are you impressed by the K-W Knitters' Guild yet? I know I am. Remember, this is the same Guild that is hosting the Knitter's Fair which is one of the biggest knitting events in southern Ontario.
So here's a question for you. If a famous knitter were to join your guild, who would you wish it to be? And you can't have Sally, because K-W's got her already. A related question is, what does the guild of your dreams look like? What would it do, and where would it go?
Sunday, August 27, 2006
Here's the yarn I received from Autumn Skeins:
It's lovely, good quality Canadian wool, that has traveled the long way around to my door step. For the Knitting Pattern swap, I received an old Paton's pattern for Shetland lace shawls. The instructions for the lace are written out.
So here's my issue. I'm really joining these swaps so that I can get presents in the mail because I'm seriously considering a yarn budget for the first time because I want to buy furniture and I really do have enough yarn, but that doesn't stop me from wanting more.
I know you all know what I'm going through. I also know that I'm very fortunate that I'm trying to exercise self-control because I want to, not because I have to. But still. Do you know what's coming up in two weeks? The Kitchener-Waterloo Knitter's Fair.
I have to go of course. But I must limit my spending. I had absolutely no intention whatsoever of spending more than $40 at the tent sale and look how that worked out. Not so well. You know who wasn't surprised? My husband. Bugger.
Okay! Enough whining! I will set myself goals, I will work out the steps to attain those goals and I will put my feet on the path to my destination.
Onward ho! To the couches!
For those who are interested, here's my plan for self control when faced with irresistible temptation. I will place cash money in my pocket that represents my budget and I will leave the plastic money behind. Preferably at home in London.
Saturday, August 26, 2006
Cynthia is 82 years old. She's been a Cub Scout leader since before I was born and is still very active with the Cubs. She's working on her second generation of boys now. She also knits, and isn't afraid to try new things when she does. Here's some of her work.
Pattern Info for the Galaxy Shawl
A few people have expressed an interest in the pattern for this shawl. First of all, the original pattern's name is Spiral Octagon Shawl. I just named it my Galaxy shawl because the spirals looked like a galaxy and because the deep dark color. Anyway, reader Cathy has been in contact with Interweave Knits regarding this pattern and has given me permission to share her research with you all. Thanks Cathy enthusiastic waving.
The Summer 1998 issue is available, even though it is not listed on the Interweave website. Instead, you can call them at 1-800-272-2193. The cost for the magazine is $5.95 plus $4.45 for shipping and handling. If you prefer to send a check or money order, please send it to Interweave Press, 201 E 4th St, Loveland, CO 80537.
Tuesday, August 22, 2006
This is the shawl during blocking where the flash lets you see the design very easily. I blocked it on a bed sheet on the floor of my knitting room.
Yarn: Fleece Artist Country Kid
Pattern: Octogonal Spiral Shawl, from Interweave Knits, Summer 1998
I'm very pleased with the end result, particularly the edging, since I swapped in my own. The original can be seen here. I chose this edging because it reminds me of the spiral's arms and I wanted to continue that swooping feeling to the pattern. I think this will make a lovely little shawl for the winter. It fits nicely too.
My children took these two shots. Though they aren't the best, I like the soft haze that is around me in them. The dark corner of the following picture will give you a good idea of the real color of this shawl.
This weekend was very successful for me because aside from the yarn sale, and finishing the Galaxy Shawl, I also finished the last of the goldfish mittens so now I'm all set for the Western Fair. I'm entering the fish mittens, both sets will be displayed but only one judged. I'm picking the prototype for judging since it's got more technical details in it. The goldfish ones were simplified a bit for the pattern I was writing. I'm also entering the Rose Leaf Lace Vest and a pair of Latvian socks. I hope I win at least one ribbon!
So all this while I've been mulling over my scarf for the Funky Scarf Swap. I've had many, many ideas fly through my head, all to be discarded for one reason or another. My parents came over for supper and I went through all my ideas with my mother and she and I came up with an entirely new direction. Then last night, at knit night, the gang proposed a second, entirely new direction. So I'm down to two ideas and I still don't know which I prefer.
If all of this sounds very vague, please bear with me. I may have done a stupid thing and accidentally revealed myself. (After just commenting to Scout that people should Read the Flippin' Manual!) Anyway, I hope my pal missed my slip-up, but I'm not counting on it and therefore the entire scarf thing is going to be kept under a veil, or scarf, thing.... Ya know what I mean!
On Thursday and Friday of this week I will be staying with my mother-in-law as she recuperates from some non-serious day surgery. She'll likely be wanting to sleep a lot so I will be left to my own devices quite a bit. A knitting holiday! After all the finishing I did this weekend, and the trouble with the scarf, I don't really have a big project on the needles. I did start a sock:
This is Regia Mega Boots Stretch, and I'm knitting it up in a chevron pattern from Sensational Socks. I think the stretchy yarn will help to give the chevrons some extra needed give. The photo was taken in my car on the way home from work because I liked the light so much. Yep, I carry knitting and a camera in my purse at all times. I call it dedicated. You can call it obsession if it makes you happy.
So I think the big project I will bring with me to my mother-in-law is the Fair Isle Vest for my father. I'm thinking I'll just pack the book, all the yarn, and my Boye needlemaster set. That way I can swatch and switch up needles if I need to. Of course the sock comes too. It sounds like a fun sort of holiday, doesn't it? Well, for a knitter at least.
Monday, August 21, 2006
Oh and here's the cute dog:
Thanks to everyone who played and for those of you who didn't get it, the song was "Keep your Hands to Yourself" by the Georgia Satellites. I always think of that song when someone says, "I've got a little change in my pocket..."
Saturday, August 19, 2006
The sale was at the SpinRite factory outlet which is in Listowel. Words fail me.
The enablers from left to right: Heather, the infamous Mary Jane, and Connie.
Inside the tent. Note the speed on the woman in the front left and the look of concentration on the other woman on the right. It was a frenzy in there!
On the way out, I saw a lady piling her finds into her car. She was glowing and happy to let me take a picture of her stash.
This is inside the store, where there were more buys to be had. I purchased 10-100g balls of a rag yarn, 100% wool for $17.98. Who could resist?
The complete haul. That blue in the bottom left is a soy/wool blend. There's a story to be told about that yarn.
The Blue Yarn Story
We cruised the tent sale first, went inside the store, had lunch, and then went back to the tent sale. While inside the store Mary Jane called me to see this great yarn she'd found. It was a soy/wool blend.
"Oh yeah", I said "That's cool. I nearly bought 2 bags of that in the tent."
"What?! It's in the tent?" exclaimed Mary Jane, "Why didn't you buy it?"
"Cause I thought it felt itchy."
"Yes," said Mary Jane, "But it would make a great outer jacket."
"Hmm..." I said.
So when we went back to the tent, I picked up my two bags again, but Mary Jane said I'd better get three just in case. You know what I call a friend like that? Enabler!
The Knitter's Funeral Story
Okay, this is another Mary Jane story. Mary Jane recently attended the funeral of her husband's Aunt Thelma. As she approached the casket to pay her respects Mary Jane noticed something odd about the flowers in Aunt Thelma's hand. They were two balls of yarn in them! The odd thing about this story, is that Mary Jane never knew that Aunt Thelma was a knitter while she was a live.
There are many other cool stories to tell you about, like how Connie got the Bohemian, but my boy is bugging me so he can play Runescape. And I have some yarn to stash.
Hope you're having a great weekend and don't forget to enter the contest.
Thursday, August 17, 2006
Thanks to you all, I had a little change in my pocket (going jingle lingle ling). The consensus amongst my friends and family is that it should go towards my knitting. So I've ordered these patterns from Sivia Harding:
I've also placed an order with The Knitter. Did you know that they ship for free? All the Trekking I own comes from them.
So now, trick question, what song am I thinking of? And what's the name of the band who sang it? The clue is in this post.
Hey! This sounds like a contest to me. E-mail me your answers and I'll send a care package of knitting notions to whoever guesses right. We'll have a draw if it's more than one and all guesses must be in by Sunday at 11pm. I'll announce the winner on Monday.
Tuesday, August 15, 2006
So I finished my cabled mittens after all.
I'm just so darned happy about it.
This picture was an attempt to do a creative photo shoot wearing mittens and a winter coat while standing in front of flowers. It was supposed to be a study in contrasts, but I just looked goofy. I suppose sticking my tongue out doesn't help.
Monday, August 14, 2006
But my favorite is the Funky Scarf swap. I'm knitting for a great pal for whom I want to stretch my creativity because I think she'll appreciate it. I'm going to study her questionnaire for a while before I commit to any design plan. I feel like cackling while I wring my hands... bwaa ha ha!
So the other thing that is a lot of fun is tell my knitter about me. I've got a super secret pal (SSP) who has already contacted me and asked me her own questions. Sweet! So this is a bonus round for her, because I'm going to answer the official swap questions too.
LetÂs get the allergy part out of the way. Are you allergic to any fibers? None at all.
Do you prefer any fibers over others? I like natural fibers the best.
Thinking back to ScoutÂs post about what funky means to you, post an image of something that you think is funky! This scarf is ultrasuede that has been cut into leaves. It would be even cooler in a leaf color, or with some stitching on it to mimic leaf veins.
Would you prefer funky yarn or a funky pattern? Pattern I think, though I'm very open minded.
What are your favorite colors? This is a very hard one to answer with words. But I like colors that have depth. Either deep and rich, or bright and high toned. See my art choices below.
What is your favorite piece of art? Here's a couple from the Art Renewal Center, one of mfavoritete sites.
What colors would you never have up close to your pretty face? Yellow, orange, tan, or kahki.
Would you prefer an actual scarf or a cowl? Scarf.
When you wear a scarf do you prefer a wider/shorter scarf or a thin/long scarf? How about medium? Not too wide, and not to short.
What is the climate like where you live? I live in Canada, so a scarf could see a lot of use! When it's really cold I use a mock turtle neck that I knit from Manos to keep warm.
Would you prefer a functional scarf (to keep you warm) or one just to funk-up your wardrobe?Funkify me!
What else would you like your partner to know about you?
I'm open minded, I love art and creativity and something that shows the true soul of the person.
Sunday, August 13, 2006
There have been sightings of this mysterious beast, but never before has it been captured on camera. Our camera person sighted the monster socks in the tall grass where it appeared to be resting:
Little is known about the Soch Ness Monster, other than the fact that it is a sock of epic proportions. Most sightings have occurred in the wilds of suburbia, where the monster allegedly lurks in search of prey: fun fur. Here, in an exclusive, never before seen image, we see the monster going in for the kill.
It is almost too horrible to watch the terrible depravity of the Soch Ness monster as it ravages the innocent, albeit annoying, ball of fluff. And yet, there is a gentler side to this great giant. The Soch Ness Monster was caught on camera, cavorting with the snake in the grass.
Perhaps one day we will better understand the behaviour of this misunderstood giant.
Edited to add: Socks in the Wild - Episode One, and Episode Two
Friday, August 11, 2006
There's commercial knitwear as a starting point. Sometimes it's nice to have a sweater that's just as trendy as what's in the store, but knit to fit and personalized to your tastes. I found this sweater in the sales rack just waiting for the right person:
I'd rather own a picture of this sweater than the actual garment.
So let's take buildings as a source of inspiration. London has plenty of graceful old homes in the downtown area that are inspiring. Doesn't this wood work look like lace?
And here's a stain glass window that could easily be transformed into a beautiful shawl:
How would you go about it? I might look at lace, intarsia or Fair Isle. What if the white diamond portions were done in a lace pattern and the rest was colorwork? Would short rows work best, or increases, or modular knitting?
Knowing a lot of techniques gives you a wider range of tools to execute your design. This is another reason I don't have time to knit up all my ideas. Part of my knitting time is dedicated to knitting up other peoples designs so I can learn new techniques. I want to stretch and grow my abilities so I can design up my wildest dreams.
So both of those pieces of architecture were pretty easy really. The hardest part is looking around yourself. Here's one that's more subtle:
I see a lot of texture in this building. I also see a pleasant arrangement of shapes. Finally, there's an interesting arrangement of monochromatic colors surrounding that hit of blue in the center.
Finally I'd like to leave you with my latest internet discovery: The Island of Misfit Patterns.
Wednesday, August 09, 2006
For one, I've put myself out there with the fish mitten pattern. It was a lot of effort to write and I while I was happy to do it because of all the positive response my design received, now that it's done, I just want to be sure that everyone that was interested in it hears about it. I had posted an announcement to Bitchin' Mittens that I later found out was removed. Understandable I suppose, but still...
I'm wondering if I should put more effort into promoting it. I'm wondering if I made a mistake self-publishing the pattern because part of me thinks this little pattern is worth going through all of blogland. I wonder how the heck I should self-promote anyway?
Also, did someone turn off the Internet? The activity levels seem really low these days.
I have decided to rename the "Spiral Octagonal Shawl" to "Galaxy Shawl" and I'm experiencing angst over this project too.
I'm wondering if the Country Kid will block out. As you can see in the picture, this shawl needs a spanking good blocking. It occurred to me, when I was almost done the main body of the shawl, that I should have knit a swatch and blocked it out to see what would happen. For a smart person, I do some dumb things sometimes.
I replaced the shell edging with one called "Grandmother's Edging" from Barbara Walker's second treasury. The shells looked out of place to me, but I'm not certain that I've got the right edging here either. I'm hoping it more closely echoes the spirals in the body of the shawl.
I'm worried that the kid will fuzz up too much. It sheds while I'm knitting it. I'm worried that I burned out on this project. Most of what you see here was knit up on the long weekend. Sometimes, it is nice to just submerge myself into my knitting, but now I wonder if I did too much because while I love the design and the feel of the yarn, and I honestly like my edging choice, for the last two nights I've been working on this:
What a let down.
Monday, August 07, 2006
Yep, the pattern for the fish mittens is done and can be yours for $5. My low-tech plan for hi-tech sales is for you to send me payment through PayPal and then I will e-mail you the pattern. My e-mail address is laurie_corriveau AT hotmail DOT com (you know the drill). I've also put the addy into my side bar, for future reference. I will also accept payment through snail-mail, if necessary, and e-mail the pattern to you once the cash arrives or the check clears. Just send me an e-mail if you are interested and I will give you my mailing address.
Some points to consider:
- I rate this pattern for the experienced knitter because of the entrelac and mitered cuff.
- The yarn requirements is less than 100g of sock yarn.
- The name Fiber Fish is courtesy of CeCe who has a blog by that name. Thanks Cece! for sharing your name with me.
I'm looking forward to seeing what kinds of fish will evolve from your needles.CORRECTION
These instructions have been incorporated into all patterns mailed out as of October 15, 2006.
Top Row Squares
Pick up and knit 19 (21) stitches as for middle row squares.
1. Knit 1 row.
2. S1K, K8, DD, K9.
3. S1P, P16, w&t. 2 stitches are unworked.
4. K6, DD, K6, w&amp;t.
5. P12, w&t.
6. K4, DD, K4, w&t.
7. P8, w&t.
8. K2, DD, K2. Pick up wrap and pass over stitch. Turn stitch by slipping it purlways, then pass
it back to the left hand needle through the back loop. Then knit stitch together with wrap through the back loop. Stitch should look normal (not twisted) on the right needle. Continue with
remaining wrapped stitches and also knit slipped (unwrapped stitch). 13sts on needle.
1. Knit 1 row.
2. S1K, K7, DD, K8.
3. S1P, P14, w&t. 2 stitches are unworked.
4. K5, DD, K5, w&amp;t.
5. P10, w&t.
6. K3, DD, K3 w&t.
7. P6, w&t.
8. K1, DD, K2. Pick up wrap and pass over stitch. Turn stitch by slipping it purlways, then pass
it back to the left hand needle through the back loop. Then knit stitch together with wrap through the back loop. Stitch should look normal (not twisted) on the right needle. Continue with
remaining wrapped stitches and also knit slipped (unwrapped stitch). 11sts on needle.
Continue as written.
Saturday, August 05, 2006
The cabled mitten will remain unfinished until the new yarn arrives. Yes, I broke down and ordered some after griping all day Friday about how I didn't want to. I found Freshwater Fibers on eBay and Melody will ship to Canada, so I placed my order for two balls. Why two? One to finish the current mittens and another to start a fresh pair. Cause what the heck am I going to do with less than one ball of Hemp Yarn?
It progresses. Here's Maureen the fabu test knitter exclaiming how much she enjoys knitting itty bitty entrelac squares:
I'm going to put the finishing touches on the pattern this weekend. We're getting there people.
There are some new buttons on the side bar. I found Swap Bot and I joined the Autumn Skeins swap. Just cause I have to try everything at least once. Then Norma! mentioned the Funky Scarf swap and I had to join that one too. Funky Scarf was more along the lines of what I was looking for. I'm already toying with ideas of what original scarf I could make, but then I realized I'd have to wait to see what my pal would like! Damn.
WIP - TODO List
I need to get at the second goldfish mitten soon. I took a break from them with the cabled mittens. Actually on the needles is a pair of knee high work socks for my husband, the vacation shawl which is my take along project, the cabled mittens of course, and I've just cast on for something new. This tally doesn't count the projects that have broken down on the side of the road. I'll explain them some other time.
Patricia of the spiral shawl has kindly shared the pattern with me. My yarn is some Fleece Artist Country Kid that has sutble variations of purple from pale lavender to practically black. I'm using a considerably larger needle to accommodate the fuzz in the yarn and because I'd like my shawl to be bigger. I'll just have to keep knitting to discover if I'm a genius or whacked on the head.
There is a group on Flickr selling yarn called Destash & Restash. I bought some yarn there for Autumn Skeins at a really good price: 2 skeins Lavold Silky wool for $9 including shipping. I may post something there this weekend. Or maybe not.
Also interesting for those of us with blogs is this counter from NeoWORX. If I get time, I may try it out. Or not.
Last night, Kat, Maureen and I got together for a little stitch 'n bitch. Kat needed some TLC, because she's had a really rough time with her car. So we talked her ear off! Look how happy she is now:
Yep, we fixed 'er up good.
Three or four people commented on how cute we were sitting there knitting together. They seemed like they wished they could join us so I offered to teach them to knit and wouldn't you know it but one lady took my contact info. Yes, I'm a knitting missionary. The Yarn Harlot would be proud.
Thursday, August 03, 2006
But, yes, I'm still feeling some heat. I've finished one cabled mitten and I'm very happy with it. It has an archaic feeling about it, like a gauntlet. Ironic, since it probably breaks several traditional knitting conventions. But I don't care! It's just a mitten.
Here's a progress picture:
But I'm feeling the heat on the second one. See how little yarn I have left? It seems like _almost_ enough. But what if it isn't? I'll just have to knit it to see, but my stomach is in a bit of a knot because I want to put these mittens into the Bitchin' Mittens contest and then maybe give them as a Christmas present. I have no idea where I could get more of this yarn, since it was the last ball in the shop. True, I haven't searched the internet yet...
I'd better get knitting and stop borrowing trouble.
Oh, just one more thing! Dave Daniels of Cabin Cove Mercantile, host of Bitchin' Mittens, pointed out a wonderful resource for interesting sock patterns at Wildhorse Farm Designs. I like a lot of the designs. I generally don't like to pay for sock patterns. I own Sensational Knitted socks, I like to design my own socks, and then there's Knitty. So while some of the designs look like something I could figure out for myself, others look like it would be worth paying someone else to figure out the tricky parts. Once I have some spending cash again, I may go back to buy one or two. Maybe these also.
This is where I am as of Friday morning. Oh the burn.....
I think I may have found some similar yarn on e-bay. But I don't know if I want to bother. If only I hadn't gone for the cable on the back of the hand! I could rip them and put in a plain hand, but that would feel like a root canal right now.
Git 'em outta my sight.
Tuesday, August 01, 2006
It's so hot, the cat melted!
It's so hot I had to knit in the mall. Notice the boy?
If you want the extended version, keep reading.
Monday was hot. Work was cool and after work I went to Lynn's house for Monday knit night. Those are her pets and they are not suffering from heat in the least! Harley was actually begging for Lynn to knit him a doggy coat because the air conditioner was cranking it out.
I took a picture of a really funky sweater Lynn is working on, but the flash on my camera didn't do justice to Lynn's fine sense of color. Next time, I'll try to get a pic while the natural day light is available.
Last night sleeping was pretty bad. I was reduced to sleeping on the kitchen floor, since our bedrooms are all upstairs and we have no basement in our house. Today, Jim broke down and bought what had to be one of the last air conditioners left at Canadian Tire. It's pretty tiny, but it's working hard at making the bedrooms cool. We left the house to go for dinner while the little engine that could tried it's best.
Did you notice my mitten in progress? It's my next big thing for Bitchin' Mittens. That's my Hemp Yarn I bought while on vacation. The cabled cuff is from Kepler and the cable in the hand is from Alice Starmore's Celtic Knitting. I had to rip it back about 4 times before I finally got it right, but now it is coming together sweetly.
And that's all I have to say.