Posts categorized "Scarves"

Submersion

I have been playing with all the yarn.

The last two weekends I have spun, knit, wove, finished some handspan, finished something for my nephew, finished a sock, started the second sock, started new handspun and made significant progress on my Occam scarf. 

I feel like I'm back to my old crafty self and I feel great.

Here's what I've been up to...

Fitzcarraldo Knee Sock number one. It's *almost perfect. After what felt like months of knitting the twisted ribbed cuff, I think the part just before the cuff is a touch too tight. 

IMG_6831

I'm putting it in the time out corner while I work on the second sock.

IMG_6839

I will tackle the problem on both socks at the same time. This is mostly because I can't face ripping out all that ribbing. Maybe my calves will slim down or I'll get taller or something.

It will totally be worth fixing; these socks are a thing of beauty.

I also finished something for the wee baby Mitchell for Christmas, but wish to avoid spoilers so no photos yet. Trust me, it is the height of CUTENESS.

Occam is almost done. I really like it. I decided to do the medium width and the longer length and I'm going to run out of blue yarn, so I'm modifying. If you notice, don't say anything okay ;)

IMG_6840

Last weekend I also decided to weave. Check out this fabulous pooled warp (Indigodragonfly Wingenhooven in Dminion Unhinged). I ran into a bit of trouble by warping the loom backwards (which took some fixing, let me tell you...) so I'm not sure how pooled it'll be when it's done. I think the merino, yak, silk around my neck will solve any issues with the colour.

IMG_6821 copy
And lastly I've been continuing with Spinning Sundays. Last week I plied the last of a big project using beautiful Lisa Souza BFL I bought not long after getting my first wheel. The yarn is big and fat and squishy. It's drying now and looks amazing. Photos to come. 

Today I pulled out a 4oz braid and set to work on making some worsted spun yarn for mittens.

IMG_6837

The colour is Captain Tightpants, fibre is yak and merino from Into The Whirled and nothing about this project is bad.

IMG_6835

 


Since I last Blogged

Work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work...

Attended lots of year end school things for the kids including Emma's fabulous school dance night:

IMG_5393

And Xander's music night and honour roll night and volunteer recognition event:

IMG_5368

 Untitled

Work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work.  

Then Emma performed in her musical theatre show.  She was Maisy from Suessical (here she is with her besties--she did all their makeup):

IMG_5417

Then more work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work work until I started to get grumpy.  

I did sneak in some knitting, but sometimes not for days at a time which makes me kinda sad because knitting is a thing that makes me happy and when I'm really busy, it slows me down.

The good news is, on my birthday I unpinned this scarf from the blocking board.  It was a treat for me purchased at the Toronto Knitter's Frolic (after a week of 15 hour days!).  The yarn is from Shirley Brian and it comes in a plastic take out tub.  It's a four ply cotton and at intervals, one thread is swapped out for the next colour giving it the nice striped effect.  I knit the pattern that came with it--Mariner--and it was just detailed enough to keep me awake after all the work work work work work.

IMG_7609

IMG_7603

Perfect for summer (I'm on a navy kick so it works with my wardrobe nicely).

IMG_7611

Will work be less crazy this month?  Hopefully.  It's summer and I want to enjoy it.


Slow Scarfing

I'm a product knitter. I like having finished pieces. I like blocking and seaming and weaving in ends because they represent getting something done, and the opportunity to start another new project.

But some knits start out great and then lose their appeal. The pattern is too complicated for my current headspace or I like the finished project but not the knitting itself. Or the yarn/needle combination isn't right. Or I start a heavy mohair thing in April and can't stand to touch it when the weather warms up (I could probably start a mohair King sized blanket this year because it's never going to get warm).

The beautiful Kirkingwood Paisley shawl I'm working on is one of those slow projects. I feel in love with it the moment I saw it (Fiona was knitting it on my couch the first time we met in person*) and bought the pattern and Indigodragonfly yarn as soon as it was available at the 2014 Knitter's Frolic.

I realize that it's almost been a year since I started the scarf and I'm wanting it's beautiful red silkiness around my neck and I'm only 41 rows into a 70 row pattern. This is slow scarfing. I'm making the biggest size and it takes almost an hour to knit a row.

It's not really a pick up, knit a bit and go stir the soup kind of knit. That's okay, there should be long, slow, meticulous patterns. They're good for the brain and they make very pretty things. Just look at how some cables and lace make paisleys--genius.

To get this done, I'm following some advice I read from some wise knitter: spend 10 minutes a day on the stalled projects to move them along. I don't get to this one all the time, but much like the trick I play on myself to run when I don't want to, just picking up and committing to only a short time with this knit is resulting in some beautiful and enjoyable knitting.

Will I have it done by this year's Frolic? Probably not, but will it sit in the basket for years? Nope. Only 30 rows before the garter stitch. I freakin love garter stitch...


*I don't randomly invite fabulous knitting designers to my house--we have mutual friends who were visiting and we all like good yarn and good beers. Though on reflection, I should invite more people like Fiona over because good things happen.

 


Catching Up, #WomanWhoGetsShitDone Style

One of the greatest things about my job is that we close for two weeks over Christmas.  Not only do I have two weeks off (on top of my holiday allotment) everyone else does too--I get nothing but spam in my inbox while I'm away and there's no work piling up.  Everyone returns pretty happy and refreshed and it's probably the BEST benefit ever.

The first week does tend to get sucked up by the run up to Christmas--shopping, cleaning or travelling, parties, and that initial need to sleep as much as possible.  

It was worth it for looks like this:

IMG_4914

Santa Meme and Memere got him the WiiU he's been wanting since they came out.

IMG_4917

The time after Christmas is far far better in my mind.  It's quiet. We're all home (Craig gets almost the same time off from his employer) and while we're a bit lazy, we also catch up.  We have pyjama days, movie nights, lots of computer game time, and for me, a whole lot of fibre fun.

I finished a few things.  Sallah Cowl in Indigodragonfly Rock Paper Scissors Lizard Spock

Image_medium2

A Frankensweater in Collinette Tagliatelli.  It used to be this sweater that I frogged.  And then it was supposed to be a proper Collinette pattern but everything went wrong so I winged it.  The collar and cuffs are some leftovers from my Carnaby Street sweater and it's a super jaunty oversized sweater on Emma (I may borrow it, but fear my jaunty days are long passed).

15505255713_ac783dfabf_z

I even warped the loom!

Image_medium2

In between all this, I got crazy and catalogued my entire stash of yarn and fibre--it's now all photographed and logged on Ravelry.  Tomorrow I'll probably download and see if I hit "stash neutral" for 2014 (where I used at least the same amount of yarn that I brought in).  I put a few things in the goodwill pile and had a nice hard look at what I have. 

I love it all.  But I should probably knit, spin and weave from what I have for a bit.

I went for a few runs--that felt good.  I will say that I don't think the TVT surgery worked as well as I hoped--I still leak a bit.  It's MUCH better than before, but I was hoping for perfection and well, that may take a bit more time.  At least I can cough and sneeze and stay dry.  

I saw some friends, had some beers, read a book, took a long bath, and baked.

Then I went into full #womanwhogetsshitdone mode and finally filed all the kids school memories and report cards into their memory books--I was about two years behind.  And all of our Epic Road Trip photos are now downloaded, put on Flickr and backed up on the external drive.

Like I said, this break is for Catching Up--I don't fool around.


More catch up

I slept just over nine and a half amazing hours last night and now I'm getting shit done.

I feel like I'm always playing catch up on the blog and can't quite seem to find my way out of that. I always have something to say and I say a lot of it on Twitter, but feel like I should be taking those ideas over here to a better space where I can express my ideas more fully except I don't have the time for that kind of reflective writing. Or, when I do, I'm just too damned tired because I have a mentally demanding job and the brain just tells me that I need knitting, or running or TV or just stupid Two Dots on the iPad instead (omg can I please just get the last level and make it end?)

Enough of that, now let's look at something pretty. I finished my Rickenbacker Shawl and I'm so happy with it.  I made this out of handspun and I spun the yarn so it would stripe and it all went so well.  The shawl is a tad small but that was all the yarn I had so I have no complaints.  

15022192120_7bdb43c2ec

I would also knit this pattern again--super easy and really fun.

15023076327_66b48baa7b

And I finished my Rhinebeck Sweater: Brandied Orange (aka Brandied Cherry).  This was a fun knit.  It didn't come out quite as I imagined it in my head, but I love it all the same.  I had this idea it would look great with a skirt and well it doesn't.  But it is a perfect cozy on the couch, skinny jeans sweater and I'm wearing it a bunch for casual wear.  The Lorna's Laces Shepherd Worsted is divinely soft (though it does pill) and I'll be wearing it a lot.

14980382793_7118edbe1d

It did stretch a bit funny in the photo, but I was also in the car for 10 hours coming home from Rhinebeck so I'm a bit rumpled.

15597881471_6ab3a2f37a

I should say more about Rhinebeck, but that deserves a post of it's own.  Instead I'll show you what I knit on the annual pilgrammage.

Smile and Wave.  I needed a new portable project and didn't feel like knitting socks.  So I grabbed a skein of Indigodragonfly Mergoat sock in Obviously You're from District One and got knitting.  I LOVE the colours and the planned pooling.  

14980353763_124a06ccd6

While Emma is modelling, so far these are mine.  I might make the next pair a bit shorter for variety--these are in heavy rotation for biking to work right now--just a little extra warmth for the morning.

Well, that's a start.  Now I need to get some stuff done around the house and I'm going to bake bread because it's November and snow flurries have already happened and today is about woolies and soup and warm fresh bread.

 


Knitters, we have a problem

I have knit all my travel knitting.

I thought I brought ample supplies. I had two easy projects and a difficult one. Lots of yarn for a family trip to Ottawa with a short stop at the cottage in Tweed. Usually I don't have a lot of time to knit. In fact, I played a lot of Two Dots and didn't knit when I opportunities. My knitting was even confiscated during out tour of the Parliament building.

It should have been enough.

I finished Rickenbacker before we left Ottawa. It needs a solid blocking and then it will be a perfect little scarf.

I finished the second sleeve of my Rhinebeck sweater (Brandied Cherry) on the drive to Tweed and the first few hours at the cottage. Frankly, that was unexpected...I got into the groove of the stitch pattern and just chugged along.

So I started the front. The hard part. The cables for which I must follow a chart. I haven't knit cables in a long while and it was great. I sat on the deck, half watched the lake and knit. I almost ran out of battery on my ipad which has the chart. That would have bought me some later knitting time now that I think about it.

Then I ran out of the yarn so had to shelve that project. Totally surprised me.

I didn't knit again yesterday because I knew I only had one project left. My always-in-my-purse project. Socks. Almost done socks. Crap, why didn't I bring more knitting socks.

It was a lovely afternoon again on the deck. Interspersed with some Twitter and Two Dots and Netflix. Then they were done. The ends woven in.

I guess I can wear them home in the car. Where I have a 2 1/2 hour drive and NO KNITTING.

NEXT TIME I BRING ALL THE YARN.

 


Cozy Cowls

Is it a bad thing that all I want to do is knit cowls?

Neckwarmers that hug you tight and keep you warm?

Untitled

(Duelling Diamonds of DEATH! neckwarmer in Indigodragonfly MCN Sport)

Infinity scarves with pretty patterns?

Triune

(Triune in Fiber Optics Gradient handspun--my handspun!--Merino Silk)

Totally makes sense to me.  It's November.  It's often chilly in the morning and I need to fill in the gaps on my outerwear for my bike into work. 

Cowls look nice and tidy as a jaunty accessory.  They're that perfect extra layer for a cold house or office.

And they're the perfect, not too complicated knitting for a person like me who has been hit by the busy season at work and at home and who doesn't have much horsepower in the old brain in the evening.

Next up...super chunky seed stitch cowl.  I bought some fabulous soft grey Mirasol Ushya yesterday at the Purple Purl.  

Size 10mm needles and cozy knitting.  

Bring it on. 


All Hail Garter Stitch

Once again, I fall in love with a beautiful garter stitch pattern.

Last year it was All the Shades of Truth, a wrap I loved knitting and love wearing (in my icy cold office).

This year it's Eden Prairie.

I enabled assisted my pal Keri with her Eden Prairie yarn selections at the Spring Knitter's Frolic and while I watched hers knit up so beautifully, I realized I have to make one too.

Conveniently, I was visiting the dying team extraordinaire at Indigodragonfly headquarters and put together a fantastic selection of colours.

I started last week and am ready to quit my job and work on this full time.  I love every colourful garter stitch moment of it.

Untitled

Green: Where's the regenerate switch on this convertable?

Blue: Canoe up to the beer store

Purple: Sargasm (yes, one of the best colourway names ever)

Dark green/black: Is She All Green And Fuzzy And Mossy?

Untitled

(Night shot, first photo is much more accurate for colour).

You only knit with one colour at a time and it's all garter stitch.  Swoon.

 

 


Where did I go?

Yikes!  It's been more than a month since I've posted anything.  I certainly haven't been hiding from social media, but it does steal the blog ideas far too often.  

I like the more reflective writing that comes with blogging, but need to make and take the time to do that writing.  

So here's a fast recap of the last month.

School ended.  Emma graduated grade 8 and is going to high school.  

Ya, I know, she looks rather grown up.  I love this picture.  I took it on the subway platform on our way to the graduation ceremony (that's Craig, not some random stranger).

Emma grad
This is a more grade 8 shot with her best friends:

Grade 8 Graduation

 Then to celebrate, we went crazy and drove NORTH to visit my family in Moonbeam (yes, Moonbeam).  

And yes, they have a space ship

Moonbeam!  Almost there.

My cousins have a beautiful place on Remi Lake and we enjoyed the long days and dark starry nights (the sun didn't set until 10:30!)

Another great day. Sunset at 9:30. Amazing.

Sadly, we could only stay for 2 days so we took a day to drive up (11 hours) and a day to drive back (10 hours)--1750kms round trip for 2 days of fun.  It was totally worth it.  I spent a lot of summer vacations on that lake and hadn't been back for 25 years.  Now I want to go for another, longer visit.

Now we're into the lazy days of summer.  Well the kids are.  They're off doing summer stuff--at their grandparents' houses, at camps, at home.  And Craig and I are at work (sadface).

I'm using the childfree time to catch up on some knitting (when it's not too hot).

I finished a shawl on our roadtrip:

IMG_2385

Lunatic Fringe from Knitty.  The yarn is a no-name merino felted single that my pal Keri brought me from New Zealand.  It was dyed up by the amazing Kim in the colourway: Just Say Oregano.  It was an amazing yarn to knit with and a really fun pattern.

IMG_2380

I'm also plugging away at my Honeybee cardigan in Tosh Merino Light

Untitled

And something a bit crazy.  Apostrophe by Rosemary Hill in Indigodragonfly Merino Silk Sock (yum).  I love the design, but the knitting is a bit fiddly.  In the current heat wave it's a good project because it only touches my fingers.

Untitled

It's been nice to hang out over here in my blog.  I've been absent because life is good.  And I'll try to come back and say more about that this summer.


Christmas Knitting Round Up

December was sort of busy.  I got into a big fun groove of Christmas knitting.  I didn't really plan to make things for everyone but since I wasn't running I had all this TIME, so I just started making stuff.

(And I want to say a big thanks to everyone who commented about my back and my decision to take a break from running.  It's been 6 weeks and I'm still cranky about it.  Having your stories of finding new physical activities and of recovery really helped me).

 

A hat for Craig

Untitled

He picked the yarn when we were visiting Kim and Ron of Indigodragonfly this summer.  It's hard to say no when your sweetie chooses a bright yarn and asks for you to knit something.

Simple watch cap.  A lot of ribbing.  Craig asked for it to be longer and it ended up too long.  It's pretty silly, but fine with the hem folded over. Seriously, I don't let him out like that.  

Pattern: Pismo Hat

Yarn: Indigodragonfly Merino Sock in Zen and the Art of Clown Disposal

A hat for Emma

IMG_0106

She chose the pattern and the inner liner colour.  I didn't have anything suitable in the stash, so I picked up this stripey yarn.  Emma has a yellow pea coat, so it's a good match.

Pattern: Brimley

Yarn: Biscotte and Cie Gobelin and Tosh Dk

Mittens for Xander

He asked for mittens.  That's a quick and easy project.  I tried Elizabeth Zimmerman's mitred mittens. Very fun.  All from leftovers.

IMG_0477

Socks for Mom


Untitled

By request.  I've made my mother socks before and she's only really liked plain socks in a commercially spun wool/nylon yarn.  So that's what she got.

I used Kate Atherley's pattern from her new book: Beyond Knit and Purl.  I do better with a pattern than when I wing it.  This way I have some numbers written down!

Pattern: Classic Top Down Sock

Yarn: Opal Feelings

A Scarf for my Memere

IMG_0020


It's hard to buy a gift for your 86 year old grandmother.  A handknit cashmere scarf really does seem like the most appropriate thing.

She doesn't knit so it's extra special (and she brags about me to her friends!)

Pattern: Miss Otis Regrets (fabulous 1 skein project)

Yarn: Handmaiden Cashmere

Something for Charity

Untitled

This was a totally last minute crazy idea.  We have a charity auction at the President's holiday party to benefit a mental health initiative on campus.  This year donations were down and when the call came out, I decided to knit up a scarf.  In a weekend.

It's not so hard when you have a yummy 50/50 merino silk single in the stash.  It sold for enough money to make me feel good about the donation (I would have bought it myself if needed) and someone has something pretty.

I confess I'm not keen on the colours, but the knitting was lots of fun.

Pattern: Noro bias lace scarf 

Yarn: Schaeffer Helene