Disappointment

One of my new year’s resolutions is to finish all my UFOs. I decided to start with the Ohm Shawl. The yarn is 3 skeins of beautiful Serenity Silk Singles from Zen Yarn Garden. I got the yarn at Unwind’s Passport Club back in April. I loved the sample, so I couldn’t resist the whole package.

I put it aside because I got bored with the pattern. The center is really repetitive. And of course I wanted to start other projects 😉 . I realized after I picked it up again that it is probably called Ohm because you could meditate while you do this. Not too taxing on the brain.

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I picked it up when we went for a mini vacation between Christmas and New Year’s Eve. As it turned out I only had two repeats of the chart to finish before moving on to the next color and chart. I quickly finished color number two and started working on the border. This morning to my dismay, I ran short of yarn. I am so close to finishing. I am really upset that the skein didn’t last for the whole border. It is supposed to be 430 yards. Did I do something wrong or was the skein short?

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There are 18 grams of the reddish brown left, 67 grams of the blue and 226 total in the shawl. It’s hard to say if the skein was short. There are 100g to a skein and my total is 311 grams. Maybe I should have gone down a needle size or two.

Whatever…  I’m not redoing it now. Back into hibernation it goes. Unless some kind knitter out there has an unwanted skein of the dark brown Serenity Silk Single they’d like to sell. Even a partial skein… Please????!!!!

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It really is all about the cat anyway…

 

UFOs

I have several UFOs in my queue. In a way they make me feel a little guilty. Here are some of them.

Click picture for more views on Ravelry.

Wakame Lace looks beautiful IMHO. I have the front of the sleeves to finish and the back sleeves. The top is worked in the round up to the armpits, then you hold the back stitches and work on the front sleeves. I’m not sure, but it looks like I  have only 2 or 3 more repeats to the shoulders.

This poor dear keeps getting pushed aside for other projects. She’s sweet, but time consuming. I love how the fabric is turning out. It is Fyberspates Scrumptious Lace in Oyster. It’s merino and silk so it’s soft with a gorgeous sheen. The original pattern was engineered for a sport weight yarn. I did a gauge swatch and determined that I needed 7 panels across the front and back and  3 on the bottom. I also added to the lace ground between the top and skirt.

When I saw this yarn at I Knit London, I just knew it wanted to be Wakame Lace. It took me a while to recover the pattern from my stash. I couldn’t quite remember the name, but I was sure of the edition of the magazine. It is from Interweave Knits Summer ’08 magazine.

Click for Ravelry Info.

Palindrome – This scarf was supposed to be for my husband. I’ve been working on it for almost a year now! Yikes! Ravelry says I started in 12/10. The problem with this one is the yarn keeps getting so tangled as I’m knitting, so I have to constantly stop and untangle. I’m just so stubborn that I haven’t put it on bobbins and I’m working off the balls. I got this yarn 2 years ago at I Knit London. It’s also a bit scratchy since it is pure wool. I haven’t been excited because I think it might not be fun to wear. I do like the two tone thing I’ve got going. The pattern itself is very easy when you’re not using two colors.

Click for Ravelry Page

Ahh, Twist and Shout. I have been wanting to make this sweater ever since I saw it on the cover of Knitty Fall ’08. I found the yarn in the bargain bin at Patricia Roberts Knitting in London. It was the same trip in 2010 that I bought the above yarn. It is also a pure wool, and I have gotten no farther than the picture. I hope the moths haven’t found it yet. I’m not even sure that I have quite enough to finish the sweater. This may be destined for the frog pond. :(

Click for Ravelry Page

I called this “Lighter Than Air” because it is. It is super soft and floaty. It’s made from Rowan Kidsilk Spray that I got in Amsterdam at De Afstap. I used the Large Rectangle in Leaf and Trellis Pattern with Trellis Border from Victorian Lace Today. The first thing that stopped me was the beads. I bought the beads from a street vendor in Waterlooplien and even though they are common seed beads, I have not been able to find the exact same kind. They have a metallic center that gives them a cool shine. The next thing that stopped me even after I found some beads that will do is (shame!) I ran out of yarn. I have been hunting down Kidsilk Spray in the Medici colorway ever since. I have many skeins now, but none quite the same shade as the one I left off with. The crazy thing is I bought 3 skeins at the same time in the same dye lot, but one of the balls was noticeably darker than the others. (I didn’t notice till I got home though. Home in California. Yeah.)

I refuse to frog this. Mostly because it’s very difficult to frog mohair. I’m probably going to give in and use one of the closest skeins I have. Or if I get real brave and have nothing else to work on I might rip out the border and start it over with a more matchy-matchy skein. It really is lovely in person.

Click pic for updates. This one will finish.

Meet Maybe Mulberry. This is a take off on the Mulberry Scarf by Colinette. I am making it for Unwind Yarn. This one will finish. Soon. It is two rows of Luna and 2 rows of Stella by S. Charles. I examined all the photos on Ravelry and read some of the notes and determined that if has a twisted drop stitch. I did two rows of them. The original pattern appears to have one row. So it’s different.

Those are all the UFOs I have listed on Ravelry, but I know there are many more forgotten ones in my basket. (I have a big basket.)

Tell me a little about your UFOs. 😉

Koigu

I’ve just discovered wonderful Koigu yarn. I’m sure most of you are already aware of how beautiful it is. I had never knit with it until I was asked to do a sample shawl for Foxy Knits. Their online shop specializes in Koigu. Merilyn was doing a trunk show at Alamitos Bay Yarn Company and wanted one of Fickle Knitter’s designs worked up in the lovely Koigu. The pattern was the Wild Lettuce Lace Shawl. I was immediately taken with how springy the yarn is. The color that Merilyn sent me was a lovely golden yellow. In some lights it took on a greenish cast.

The lace worked up quickly on the recommended US 5 needles and was a joy to knit. I finished in 11 days! After blocking I really loved it and was reluctant to send it back! I used two + skeins. I was hoping to only have to use 2, but I needed just a little more to finish the edging. If I were to make it for myself I think that I would make the body larger. I’d want a bit more to wrap around as a shawl, but the pattern as written came out quite nice. Here are the details on Ravelry.

The trunk show was on August 27, and I went to see all the other lovely samples made in Koigu. There were lots of shawls and scarves, and a beautiful coat that looked like it was an adult surprise jacket. There were so many lovely colors to choose from. There were the solids and the wilder multicolor yarns. There was a mulberry silk that I was coveting, but decided that I’d better wait. It is exceptionally beautiful, but I had to restrain myself.  Then there were some speckled yarns. I decided to get a couple of skeins of these to knit a pattern that I had gotten while in London earlier this year. I didn’t realize it at the time, but the pattern was from a company in Washington. The idea was to only buy stuff from England, but I digress. The pattern is Barb’s Koigu Ruffle. You can order a kit at the link. I made it for my trip to Amsterdam.

Zaanse Schans, Netherlands

I got a couple more skeins in one of my favorite colors, a tonal hand painted mauve. I’m making socks from them. So far they feel super comfy. I can’t wait to wear them! They were my travel knitting in Amsterdam. The pattern is Khotan from Silk Road Socks by Hunter Hammersen. I swear I am going to make all the socks in this book! 2 ½ done so far!

Speaking of Amsterdam, every time I knit in public I got comments and smiles. On the train a little girl of about 7 was so fascinated by what I was doing she had to bring her mother over to see. Either I don’t knit in public so much at home, or people keep more to themselves here.

Oosterpark, Amsterdam

New Wrist Warmer Pattern

As soon as the weather got to 89 degrees in Southern California, I decided to publish a new pattern for wrist warmers. Oh, the irony. I love irony, don’t you? 😉 Seems like just last week I was wearing them…

I actually designed these over the holidays. I didn’t talk about them much because they were a Christmas gift and I didn’t really update my blog about Christmas knitting. They’re super simple to knit and fast too. It’s an evening or two’s worth of concentrated knitting.

I worked them two at a time, just like my socks, on two circular needles. You don’t really need to do it that way, I just prefer it. If you’re up for a challenge, just read the right and left hands at the same time, keeping track of which row you’re on. When you get to the thumb gusset, remember to add the M1s on every odd row starting at row 13. I wish I had a picture of them on the needles. It would be easier to describe with a visual aid. I worked them as if my hands were in front of me with the thumbs in the center. Does that make sense? If not, I’ll start another pair and take a picture.

SOCK NEWS

I have started Mood from Silk Road Socks. The Ravelry group is doing a KAL. The pattern isn’t hard, but I’ve frogged them numerous times already. This morning I discovered that one of them had 68 stitches instead of 64. Now I’ve got to start that one over.

In the beginning my knitting did not look like the pictures. I discovered a note at the end of the pattern. Ummm, I wish that note had been at the beginning where the instructions for the leg are… Just goes to show you that reading the pattern all the way through before starting is profitable. Will I learn? Probably not.

I’m almost done with the leg of my RSS sock. This one is better for almost mindless knitting. Not quite, but it does take less concentration. I can actually “read” my knitting on this one. It will be the next pattern up for publication.

SCARVES

I’ve been working on Palindrome off and on since December. I thought that I might be able to give it to Rex instead of the sweater that wasn’t working out, but this has proven to be a bit of a challenge. The pattern is easy, but I decided that I wanted to do it in two colors. First I had to work out how the yarn would stay together. I guess this is my first color-work project. I think it would be Intarsia rather than Fair Isle. It’s not that hard, just very tangly. I’m stubborn too, so I didn’t make manageable bobbins, I’m using whole skeins rather than joining the yarn every so often. The yarn tends to break sometimes though, so some of the pieces are shorter and easier to untangle.

Speaking of the sweater, that would be “new sweater” in the WIP on the left side of the page. Actually, I’ve decided to use a pattern from Interweave Knits Weekend 2009. I just got my copy from EBay today! Yippee! Anyway, the sweater I’ve decided on is the Twisted Pine Pullover. I really want to do this one, but I don’t have enough yarn. It will probably be better in a softer yarn anyway. I’m going to put this project aside for a while though. I’ve got so many others going…

Ok, back to scarves. I just cast on the Panorama scarf for a store sample. I’m using Allegoro by Classic Elite in a pretty blue. The pattern is a pretty lace that seems to look a little like hearts going up the scarf. There is long fringe too. It looks very summery.

Do you think I have enough projects going? It’s hard to keep track of them all, especially the ones that are languishing in my basket. I still see lots of WIPs in my Ravelry notebook. I’d better get to work!

Have a great weekend!

Knitter Ditter

Silence…

I know it’s been quiet around here. I’ve been knitting a lot, traveling a bit and having an anniversary weekend. This is our 30th year of wedded bliss! Honestly it doesn’t seem that long, but we have grown kids to prove it.

I’m also trying to get our $%!@&!^# taxes done. See how I procrastinate? Messy bookkeeping + tax time = :( Just sayin’.

In my kniti-verse I’ve been working on writing a couple of patterns. One is for Cathy’s Wrist Warmers.

I made these for my SIL for Christmas. I made another pair in London out of one of my purchases from last year’s trip, Sheepshop Wensleydale Longwool. I’ve just finished another pair out of the yarn in the picture, Rowan Cashsoft Baby DK. They are so very soft… The pattern will be posted shortly.

Another pattern that I am writing up is for my RSS Socks. RSS is for Really Simple Socks. I based them on a pair of store bought socks that I liked. I initially made them from a KnitPicks sock yarn in black, so they didn’t photograph too well. I am currently knitting them from Classic Elite Summer Sox. I’m hoping they will be comfortable in warmer weather. I’m finding that the climate in So Cal is not conducive to wool socks. My feet get itchy. Here’s the photo from the first pair. This picture isn’t great and I can’t find the original. I had to steal this one from my Ravelry photos. Weird. Like I said, the black doesn’t show the detail well but I like the way the blue Summer Sox is coming out. Photos to follow soon.

I need to catch up on posting my other knitting. I’ve started the Wakame Lace Tunic. I probably have the bottom finished. I just need to block and measure  to be sure. The lace pattern is easily memorized, so it goes quick, except for the volume!

I’m also working on a Palindrome scarf out of the Wensleydale Longwool in two brown colorways. Ugggh, need photos. Ok, I promise. Soon.

Just before heading off to London I made Nicole from The FibreCo’s Terra. It came out a little large and quite slouchy. It’s really warm and goes with all my pink stuff. I also made a blue one from the Wensleydale Longwool in blue. I felt guilty for buying all that yarn in London last year and not using it! I’m doing much better this year, thank you very much!

Ok, enough with the knitting. Back to taxes. Can I throw up now?

Knitter Ditter

I ♥ London Knitting

Wow! It’s been a while since I’ve posted. Especially about knitting. In the meantime I had another birthday which was wonderful. We had a Super Bowl Birthday party. I got a $50.00 gift certificate to my favorite LYS, (Yippee!!!),  lots of gift cards and other cool stuff. The day was nice, my church choir sang Happy Birthday. That hasn’t happened before. I’m sure I was blushing.

Last week we were in London for the Broadcast Video Expo. I didn’t work though, my DH did. We arrived a couple of days early to take in some sights. We took the tour of Windsor Castle, Stonehenge and Bath. It was a day-long trip and as our tour guide said it was only a taste of each place. We could easily spend the whole day in Windsor or Bath. The first day we went to Kensington Palace and took the tour. Right now they have an exhibit called the “Enchanted Palace.” It was a bit Disney-esque, but fun. It was an historical and artistic account of each of the seven princesses who lived there. You were supposed to “discover” the names of the princesses.  Diana’s dress was on display as well as Margaret’s tiara and wedding gown.

We visited the Victoria & Albert Museum. I had to go back a second day to check out the textile exhibits and spent half the day looking at amazing and incredibly intricate lace.

Collar made of bobbin lace - mid 17th century

Collar made of bobbin lace - mid 17th century

I never knew such techniques existed. The thread was so fine, it looked to be even finer than sewing thread. I was simply blown away by the artistry involved in making such pieces. There was a French fan that was a landscape scene with a sluice sending water into a pond where a duck was splashing on one side, and moving into a veranda with trees and flowers on the other side. I wish I could find the picture of that one. I was too chicken to take any pictures of my own. It doesn’t seem to be allowed. Of course you can draw what you see, but I’m afraid it would just look like chicken scratch.

The next three days I spent looking for local yarn stores. I pretty much struck out on day one. The two in Notting Hill that I tried were not really yarn stores, but stores that carried a few skeins and lots of other stuff. The yarn they carried was readily available at my local Michael’s store. Not too exciting. The second store I tried actually turned out to be primarily a bead shop. I got a few items here and some blue rocaille beads to hopefully finish my “Lighter Than Air” shawl that I’m 3/4 of the way through. I got the yarn, Rowan Kidsilk Spray in Amsterdam several years ago. I also ran out of the yarn, so I’ve been collecting it as I see it come up on Ebay. So far I have not found the same colorway I started with and there is a wide variation.

Tricolette Purchases

The next day I tried a new shop near Abbey Road called Tricolette Yarns. A very cute shop. I liked the coziness of the place. She is very new, only open since October 2010. I was determined to only buy yarns that I can’t get in the States, especially British wool. I also found some cute stitch markers and a button that I thought I would put on the hat I was making from last year’s Wensleydale Longwool by Sheepshop. Yeah, I finally broke into that stash. Eh-Hemmm. I also made a pair of fingerless gloves for this trip from the pretty blue colorway.

I walked from St. John’s Wood over to Camden Lock by way of the canal running through Regent’s Park. I found Penny Burdett’s shop and bought a top from her. She is an original knitwear designer. Her designs are worked up on a machine. I also bought a few trinkets in the Indian shop and a couple of decorative lace scarves from some other vendors. I saw them last year and thought I could make them. Famous last words. This time I bought a couple. Now I can study them and make some…. yeah, right.

From Camden I took the tube over to Islington to visit one of my favorite UK yarn stores, Loop. I bought some  more wool, a pattern which I discovered is from Washington State and a copy of Piecework Magazine. Yeah, not British at all. Oh well. I was intrigued by the work I saw and after my day at the V&A the history described in the articles was compelling. I may have to subscribe. Loop has moved since I last visited. Luckily it happened to be in this little antiques alley called Camden Passage which is right off the tube stop. It was very lucky because Camden Passage didn’t even show in my map book. I think it may be a little old.

After Loop, I visited my second favorite UKLYS, I Knit London. There I found a lovely shawl pin and an even cuter button for my hat. The hat is wearing it right now. I bought only one skein that day, but came back the next to buy waaaayyyy too much Fiberspates Lace weight. What was I thinking? I bought upwards of 4000 yards! I knew exactly what I wanted to make with it. I’ve been eyeing this pattern since I saw it in Interweave Summer 2008. It is the Wakame Lace Tunic. I finally found the pattern after two days of searching Ravelry and finally my magazines. What threw me was I remembered the picture, but the photo on Ravelry was a different color and the model was seated so I couldn’t see the border. I thought I was going nuts!

So…. This pattern calls for DK weight and 1120 yards. yeah. Perhaps I’ll make some pretty scarves too.

Oriel called for sport weight and I used a fingering weight. Wakame might require extra panels. I promise to swatch diligently. I’ll let you know how it goes.

Till next time,

Knitter Ditter

New Year New Goals

Happy New Year!

I know, it is January 5th already, and I’ve neglected to post since November. I could say that I’ve been real busy, but haven’t we all? No excuse, but I seem to have that one all the time. So….

My new year’s resolutions for 2011 are:

Post to blog once a week. Maybe I need a specific day? Mmm, I’ll pick Friday. ‘K.

Write 6 new patterns. (I’ve got a couple in my head and notebooks. Time to get them out there!)

Promote my web biz. What web biz you ask? The one that’s been in my head and all the books I keep buying.

Knit every day. Uh, is that a goal? I sort of do that now.

Invest 15% for retirement – CONSISTENTLY!!!

Give beyond the regular church tithe, to outside charities – REGULARLY!!! I mean monthly. (You have to be specific with these goal things. Otherwise they flit around with a mind of their own.)

Study Web design DAILY.

Bible study daily.

Study guitar DAILY.

Save for a home on the Central Coast.

Travel to exotic places once a year.

Go to NM & CO to see where my Great-Great Grandparents lived.

Follow FlyLady’s recommendations DAILY!!!

I know there’s more, but that’s all I can think of right now. There I’ve written them down!

KNITTING PROGRESS –

I finished the Simple Triangle Shawl for Unwind’s Ravelry event. It’s this Thursday. I can’t wait! I was telling DH about it last night and he wishes he could be here to go to the party! I don’t know if he would really have fun, but it was so cool that he is excited for me to be succeeding.

I should expound on how much I love the Silky Alpaca Lace from Classic Elite. I do, I really do. It is very easy to work with and never splits. I got this whole shawl from 1 ball! Can you belive it? This stuff just goes on forever! There are 440 yards per 50 gr ball. 70% alpaca, 30% silk. Mmmmmm.

I also made a scarf from the brown colorway and some fingerless gloves for a Christmas gift. I’ll post those pictures another time. (I think I have enough left to make myself a pair of fingerless gloves.) :)

I’m now working on Alpaca Baby Shawl in True Love Fiber Merino Superwash.Alpaca Baby Shawl Pattern Here’s True Love’s Etsy Store – Yummmm! I love how squishy this yarn is. I’m working with Sorbet which is a yellow and peachy/pink variegated and peach. It is coming out quite nicely if I say so myself. Pics to follow.

Since I will be posting Friday, I’ll tell you all about the Ravelry Party @ Unwind!

Till next time,

Knitter Ditter

Ishbel

Ishbel in Ysolda Red

I have finally completed Ishbel, designed by Ysolda Teague. I think she’s my new favorite designer!  The yarn is Ysolda Red from my Lorna’s Laces Color Commentary subscription. The pattern for Ishbel came with it. I fell in love with this pattern at the very end. It has been a love / frog project for me. I was about to give up when I discovered that I was crossing the end yo because of the way I knit. I knit stockinette in the combination style made popular by Annie Modesitt. I discovered that I had to purl the yo with the yarn over the needle instead of under to avoid an annoying little cross in the yarn. Since the yo is on every row  it is supposed to just go straight across. I think. Well, that’s what I wanted anyway.

Once I discovered the error of my ways, all was well and I knit on the lace bit with no further problems. I really didn’t get the beauty of the design until the blocking phase. The point at the bottom of the shawl comes together so beautifully. It looks like flowers growing up from the bottom. I should have taken a better photo, but here it is!

Yarn: Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sock
Weight: Fingering / 4 ply
Content: 80% Wool, 20% Nylon
Color: Red (semi-solid)
Needles: US 6 – 4.0 mm
Pattern: Ishbel
Adjustments made: I added an additional 4 pattern repeats (2 on each side) so that my gauge would be close to the pattern. I think it came out larger than expected after blocking which doesn’t bother me. Now it’s a cute little shawlette! More info and photos at my Ravelry Project page

Annis

I have just started Annis from Knitty.com 2010 Spring edition. I am loving this pattern. It is very easy to memorize the repeats. Everything is symmetrical. I’m using a slightly smaller needle than called for because my gauge was a little large. I’m not sure it is correct yet, it just happened to be the smallest needle I had with me. I don’t think it matters so much being a wrap/scarf.

I was a little afraid of the nupps at first. I’ve not done them before and I always shy away from bobbles because I don’t particularly like the way they look. But I’m loving the nupps! I think they look fantastic in this yarn which is Colinette Parisienne. I was afraid that the color variation in the yarn might hide the lace pattern, but after a little blocking I am really happy with the results and I think the nupps are going to look great!

Nupp

Nupp!

See more photos on my Ravelry page: http://www.ravelry.com/projects/Cherylsknits/annis