All Yarn, All the Time

Sunday, April 30, 2006

Last post of April

Seems like this month went by in a flash. We only have 3 more soccer games of the season. There's just a little over a month left of school. And it's time to move on to a new color in Project Spectrum tomorrow.

To wrap up the gorgeous month of yellow and orange, I leave with you a few images:

The orange Henry's Attic Irish lace I dyed and swatched. It's a light weight 80cotton/20linen blend that knits up almost bulky gauge. It is destined to be a simple top, when the top-knitting moratorium is lifted.

Second is a snap of the fabric Emily and I picked out to make our Pioneer Day costumes. The natural muslin is for the aprons and Em's pantaloons, the brown paisley is for my chemise, and the girl picked the ORANGE paisley for her dress. Go Emily, way to embrace the April colors (not that she knows about this silly thing mom is doing)!!

Finally, and shot of Elise "helping" me yesterday morning by washing the new freezer cups from Joann's - you can see her washing the yellow one, but we also got orange, green and blue. Sweet!

Looking forward to another exciting month of color - and it is by far my Favorite Color Ever - GREEN!

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Catching up

I keep trying to get "caught up" with my projects. As if. No matter what I do, I keep getting sidetracked so that when I finish one thing, it seems like I have 2 more on the needles. I'm really trying to be better about it, but oh man, the yarns are so pretty!! I think part of my problem is that since I cannot stop buying yarn, or even if I'm not buying it I shop my stash, and I'm constantly swatching something new. You know, just to see what the yarn wants to be if I don't have something specific in mind? I guess it could be worse - I have heard of people who don't actually finish anything.

I set aside the navy sweater, and am just finishing the toe of the first simply lovely lace sock. I am going to try to finish the other sock by the end of next week...we'll see. The Lorna's laces is lovely to work with, but horror of horrors! there was a knot right at the finish of the gusset shaping. And I left it. I will have to see what I might do with it later if it turns out to bother me, and I must say that I'm very disappointed that this premium sock yarn that I've never splurged on before would have a knot. In the middle. I know I should have taken it out, but sometimes you don't always do what you should. I'll keep you posted. The next ball better not have any problems...

Here's a picture of the bags in the sunlight this morning. Not a huge difference, but maybe you can see the colors a little better.

And yea! Tomorrow is Friday, and I'll try to get to KM in the morning for a little knitting, then my work out, and then in the afternoon I have my pre-op physical! The countdown is on!!!

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Wednesday Night SnB

As usual, we had a great group at our Delaware meeting. I'm so happy to have these women to share my yarn passion...even when I come feeling grumpy or sad, I always leave smiling and feeling much lighter.

I have finished the body and fronts of this cardigan that I'm making out of Skacel Riviera in navy. I figured that it didn't count toward my self-imposed sweater knitting prohibition because it's not really fitted. I love this yarn - it's cotton/linen/rayon/whatever and a nice, light, thick/thin, hard to describe textured yarn, perfect for warmer weather. This pattern comes from the Garnstudio free pattern database, which, if you haven't been there yet, you should make time to enjoy. And by make time I mean you will get lost in there, so make sure you don't have anything else to do for a while.

Here is a flash picture of the little mini-bags that I made as teacher gifts, plus Emily's rewashed for a firmer felting - I will try to get a sunshine pic tomorrow for better color representation. I like the way I finished the edges on the teacher bags with an i-cord bind-off rather than the bind-off method recommended in the pattern. I can't remember if I noted this before, but I used Kraemer Naturally Nazareth in I think spring and winter colorways. It felted beautifully, was easy to knit with and fairly soft. I will use it again.

Finally (and if I were a real blogger I would know how to keep my FO's in a separate place) here is a picture of my finished Hourglass sweater from Last Minute Knitted Gifts. I finished it this year, maybe a month or two ago? it was still cold enought to wear a couple times? and I've also included a detail picture. I know many people have made this, and it really is a quick, fun knit. The hems give it a nice finish. My only problem with the design was that the neckline was too loose, which I remedied with some light elastic sewn into the neck hem - works like a charm. I used Dalegarn Sisik in the jalepeno color, and the yarn is just yummy. I'm very happy with this, and hope that it will still fit.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Weekend Update

Another busy weekend here. The weather was great so there was a lot of playing outside. Elise got an attachment for my bike so we can all go riding together, shown here with Daddy:

Pretty cool, huh?

I am not going to make any sweaters or tops until I recover from my upcoming surgery, but I couldn't help swatching this sleeveless turtleneck from with some yellow (Project Spectrum April!) TLC cotton Plus. I have never worked with this yarn before, but I like the feel of it, although it was a little splitty casting on. We'll see how it goes when I really get into it.

I also finished knitting the other teacher gift bag, which will look like Emily's "littler companion", and they are both in the washer felting right now.

Finally, I completed this Lion Brand happy baby blanket that I started maybe 2 weeks ago?, made with 2 skeins light blue, and one each of lime and buttermilk Knitpicks Crayon. I used US size 9 bamboo circular needles, and the finished size after washing is about 26" square. It is shown below pre-washing, with a cameo by Beef. This yarn is incredibly soft (plus it was really linty while I was working with it!), and I was concerned about how it would hold up in the washer and dryer. I washed it in warm water, and it came out of the dryer even softer. I have plenty of left-overs since I over purchased, so I'm going to make a tee for Elise - I made a tentative pattern on the sweater wizard this morning for a top-down raglan v-neck.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Book Review

Since I am working as a mom instead of having two jobs as a mom as well as a corporate drudge I have, from time to time, reviewed games for Jill on her site, Nights and Weekends. Apparently my reviews have been good enough for her to trust me to review a knitting book, Classic Knits for Real Women and my review has just been published here. Thanks for taking a look!

Friday, April 21, 2006

happy Friday!

woohoo! I couple of our tulips survived the marauding deer! And in perfect April colors:

Here is a picture of my shawl, looking very tiny. I'm thinking I'll use the godmother edging from Barabra Walker's Second Treasury to make it bigger.

During the Day of Dental Misery I got a little bit done on the sock. I don't know why these are going so slowly, but aren't they pretty? Lorna's Laces Shepard Sock that I bought while visiting my friend Sherrie in Cincinnati.

I'm recovering nicely from the extraction, I think, but it still hurts. I imagine it will for a few days. At least it's beautiful outside - hurray for spring!

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Nice Eggs!

What a nice weekend! (except for the part I'll mention later) Aunt Laura came to visit on Friday and we colored eggs that night. The girls had soccer games on Saturday morning and they both won, and afterward we decorated little egg-shaped cakes that I had baked the night before. Oh, and Emily and Laura got some frosting "facial hair".

And of course, hunting down the eggs the bunny left on Easter was very fun!

Saturday night Roger and I went to the Blue Jacket's game against the Blackhawks, for a great win of 5 to 2. When we left the house I started another baby companion bag, and by knitting while walking around and all during the game I had it mostly bound off by the time I got home. Emily liked hers so much we decided we should make them for teacher gifts. She is knitting one for her teacher and is almost done with the bottom of the bag.

Sunday I finished binding off the starfish. I love the way it turned out with my home-dyed merino lace from KnitPicks, however, it's way too small. I blocked it out (will post a picture soon!) and didn't make it big enough. I have plently of yarn left, so I'm thinking I'll try one of the knitted borders, perhaps from Knitting on the Edge?, and see how that goes. Any suggestions?

Now for the bad thing about my weekend: I got a toothache starting on Saturday about lunch time and it's just gotten worse and worse, extremely painful. Went to the dentist today, and I have a nasty abscess and will be getting a root canal in about an hour. Have a pity party for me, OK?

Friday, April 14, 2006

my little companion has a baby!

Emily loved my little companion bag so much that she wanted to make one for herself. I thought it might be a little big, and found the teeny-tiny felted tote recipe (scroll down her page for the pdf link) and told Em I would test it out first. Well, I made it pretty much according to the plan, but sort of free-lanced the flap and used a crochet chain for the strap. I also impatiently put it in the dryer instead of waiting for it to dry on it's own. I think I'll wash it again to remove the rest of the stitch definition, and actually block it dry for better shaping. I like the way it used up most of my scraps, and I knit it in the afternoon yesterday mostly while walking around the neighborhood while the girls played outside. April project spectrum? Dig the Orange flower button!

On the shawl: I'm almost done. I finished the recommended rounds in the pattern but have quite a bit of yarn left, so I'm going to do about 6 more - I think that's all I can stand since I'm already over 500 stitches per round, and then do the little picot edge as described in the directions. .
Even unblocked you can see the star shape produced by my sweet hand-dyed colorway - I am particularly proud of this dyeing as it's my first of lace weight, and really, isn't it pretty cool? ;o)

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

my little companion bag

Here is a before and after shot of my little companion. Note the orange for P.S. I started this project on Saturday night, and finished knitting the straps yesterday while walking around at the zoo with Elise. I think I'll like it. I used two skeins pink, and one each of the orange and green Lamb's Pride worsted weight, on US size 10.5 needles, with some left over and a good sized swatch I'm planning to use for an inside pocket. It took me 4 washing machine cycles to felt it to my satisfaction, and I think I would use larger needles next time. The striped pattern is based on the Fibonacci sequence, and I just used 2,3,5, and 8.

I also wanted to post a picture of my loot from KM from last weekend's anniversary celebration when I won a really big door prize: 6 luscious skeins of Wool in the Woods. Whee! I never win - and needless to say, I was practically drooling when I opened the bag.

I am still working on the socks and the starfish shawl, but getting closer to done on the shawl since it's a really easy walk-around project.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

whew! busy Saturday

It was such a busy Saturday, I'm happy I finally have a minute while the girls are in the bath to sit and, well, not be standing. It started before 9 a.m. with an Easter egg hunt (wearing my perfectly Easter-y fixation socks!) at my neighbor's church, which we returned from about 11:45. Then, Ames from the Delaware group came over and we went to the Merc for felting yarns. Ames is a serious felter, but I've never been that terribly interested in it, focusing lately as much as possible on Lace or dyeing, but she made a great little bag that I just had to try - see below.

Arriving home at 1:45, I was just in time to make sure the girls were both dressed and ready for soccer. Emily won 7 - 0, and Elise won because everyone wins on the four-year-old teams. Yesterday it was 78 degrees, but of course today it had to be only 42 and super windy, so we were all quite cold and tired by the time we finally got home at 4:30. Hopefully tomorrow will be a little quieter, and a little warmer too!

Friday, April 07, 2006

orange toes and yellow flowers

The first pedicure of the season, done in Orange for Project Spectrum.

April flowers from my back garden.

I finished the fixation socks and started the simply lovely lace socks from IK, which really are simply lovely.

I'm also cranking away at the starfish lace shawl from Just One More Row, made from my purple/pink home-dyed lace weight. I think it's going to be really cool, and it's a very quick knit.

Have a happy Friday!

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Happy 14th Birthday, Fifi!

Impossible to resist the pile of yarn in the Lazyboy with sunshine pouring in. You are a good cat, Fifi LeMieux.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Welcome, Spring!

Well, I've been pretty busy, but I'll try to be better about posting my yarny goodness.

It's a new month for project spectrum, and in honor of the yellow/orange theme, I present my new home-dyed sock yarn:

Happy April!