Tracksy Web Stats A Knitter's Wonderland: January 2006

A Knitter's Wonderland

(To the tune of Winter Wonderland) Needles click, how they glisten, cozy sound, as you listen, they’re stuck everywhere, sit down if you dare, welcome to my knitter’s wonderland. Yarn abounds to overflowing, countless books increase my knowing. I need every bit; I care not a whit if there’s no pathway through my wonderland! In an evening I can make a mitten, start a shawl, a sweater, or a hat. But the question to ask any kitten, is “Do you think she’ll really finish that?”

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

I Love Entrelac

And I hope if I keep repeating this, it will be true. No post last night because I had cast on the Market Square Bag, did the first set of triangles and COULD NOT FIGURE OUT what to do next! Very frustrating. Kay has promised to help me through it (whimper...sigh). So here's where I am:

Pretty close on the colors too. Dark purple, lavendar, lighter blue, dark blue, and yellow. Band finished, first row of triangles finished.

I just barely get the picture taken when I hear a galloping elephant heading for the table:

I was TAKING PICTURES WITHOUT HER! And she sat either on or next to this while I tried to take a couple more, just in case. She is reclining on the bag I store this project in, even as I type!

So this will be short as I'm off to make a cup of tea, pull out my dp's and try a couple of tips Kay has already sent me.

I Love Entrelac!

Sunday, January 29, 2006

Beginnings and Endings

What a great weekend this has been! First the Knitty Committee met Saturday morning. There were over 15 of us and the church had another event going on so we were CRAMMED into a little room off the library. It was cozy but great. And I'm not complaining, they have always made room for us and we are all very grateful!

If you have never come for a Knitty Committee gathering, you should. We have knitters, crocheters, Polly was even spinning on a drop spindle! We welcome any fiber-holics with open arms, more than ready to support you in your habit.

And we had a special guest come from Norman (the first time you're a guest the second time you come, we consider you a regular) -
Kay, who impressed us with the enterlac bag she was working on.

When I finally got home (time flies when you are around fiber maniacs, particularly if you are one also), I was inspired to begin MY enterlac bag.

I realize this is only three of the five colors but it didn't even dawn on me when I was taking the picture. And I'm too lazy to go back and take another with all of them. Trust me, you'll probably see more pictures than you care about as I start working my way through the bag. My sequence will be two rows navy blue, two rows lighter blue, two rows yellow, two rows lavendar, and two rows of dark purple.

I went out to Knitting Universe and used their paintbox to work through color layouts. Boy was that fun! In the end, my original idea for the colors was the one I liked best. But it's so handy to be able to get an idea of what it will look like ahead of time. I've managed to get the rim (done in yellow) and the first row of triangles started. This is going to be fun to knit.

And the baby blanket is done! Well, I still need to wash it, but for all intents and purposes, it is done. I love feather and fan, it has to be the easiest lace pattern in existance.

And most of today I spent creating bracelets. I haven't felt like pulling out my beads since July so it was really nice to work with them again. I'll post some pics later. I still have to turn in my creative writing assignment for this week (which means I need to go write it).

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Happy Birthday Mom!

It's my Mom's birthday. Happy Birthday, Mom! Wish we could have been there to have cake and ice cream with you and Dad. (I know... you don't eat cake, I don't eat ice cream, but I bet we could find something just as good!) I know she reads my blog every day so if you feel like it, wish her a happy birthday.

AND it's our 21st wedding anniversary. Jim and I met "on-line" (though it wasn't called "on-line" at the time). The personal PC's had just come out and not many people had them. He was here in OKC working for Uncle Sam, I was in Tacoma, Washington working as a computer programmer. It was a "God-fluke" (you know, God sets it up and we call it a fluke), that we even met.

We spent hours talking on the phone and typing to each other real-time via the computer. By the time we met face-to-face (about three months after meeting on the computer), we were good friends. This went on for about a year, and then we thought we might want to try a real dating relationship but being six states apart made it kind of hard.

Since I was the only one who could change jobs (Uncle Sam being kind of closed minded about job hopping), I got on the computer, found a head hunter, and got a job programming here. I moved out here in September, we got engaged in November, and married in January. I guess it's working out pretty well. :-)

Revelry today, knitting content tomorrow!

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

And Now For Something Different

I was tired of working on the baby blanket so thought I'd give the bee stitch dishcloth a try. First I used Sugar n Cream in Fiesta - I hated it - too much color and no stitch definition. Then I thought maybe just a few flecks of color so I tried it in Sugar n Cream Pastel Print. I hated it too. Finally, determined to make a dishcloth, I tried the little house dishcloth in the Pastel Print:

I like the yarn, but you can't see the house! Here's a closer shot:

But in my wanderings around the net tonight looking for a different dishcloth, I found dishcloth heaven! I can't wait to spend some time looking around here.

And speaking of patterns, I found my
Baby Bobbi Bear kit I had ordered last fall. I'm going to use the alpaca for a scarf for Jim but BBB is so cute, I'm going to have to find something fun to make him in.

And just in case you have missed her:

This is a cat on a lanolin high. I can not keep her away from this knitting bag! Notice her head is THROUGH the handle. I now have to keep the bag on top of a bookcase she can't get on, which is pretty darned unhandy for both of us! As soon as the baby blanket is finished, I'll be spinning extra wool just so I can make the princess her own felted cat throne.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Why, Why, Why?

I suspect this is making the internet rounds, but it was so funny I just had to share. This came to me by way of my good friend Terri:

Why do banks charge a fee on "insufficient funds" when they know you have "insufficent funds"?

Why does someone believe you when you say there are four billion stars, but check when you say the paint is wet?

Why doesn't Tarzan have a beard?

Why does Superman stop bullets with his chest, but ducks when you throw a revolver at him?

Why do Kamikaze pilots wear helmets?

Why is it that no matter what color bubble bath you use the bubbles are always white?

Why do people constantly return to the refrigerator with hopes that something new to eat will have materialized?

When we are in the supermarket and someone rams our ankle with a shopping cart then apologizes for doing so, why do we say, "It's all right?" Well, it isn't all right, so why don't we say, "That hurt, you stupid idiot?"

Why is it that whenever you attempt to catch something that's falling off the table you always manage to knock something else over?

In winter why do we try to keep the house as warm as it was in summer when we complained about the heat?

How come you never hear father-in-law jokes?

The statistics on sanity are that one out of every four persons is suffering from some sort of mental illness. Think of your three best friends -- if they're okay, then it's you.

I'm really concerned about the last one!

Monday, January 23, 2006

Don't Cha Hate It When...

you knit a row, get ready to do the next row, and realize you just knit the last row, not PURLED it! Then you pull it out (none of this sissy tinking, oh no, let's just take it off the needles, rip out two rows and put it back on the needles) and find you're missing TWO stitches!!

So now I'm in the process of TINKING back the last row to see if I can find those two wayward stitches -- yes, on the baby blanket. But I did manage to add a couple more inches this weekend. I'm thinking about 30" or so should be about the right length for a baby blanket. And I'm hoping I don't run out of the second color of yarn.

I also hate it when I only need enough yarn for one or two more rows but have to buy a full skein. In this case I guess it would be a good excuse for some matching baby accessories.

No pics tonight. But a friend sent me this
awesome link and I wanted to share it. Click on video clips and choose "Just Imagine." Let me know what you think!

Saturday, January 21, 2006

Working Away

The baby blanket continues to grow - 19" done so far! I was going to take an updated picture but I laid it down and you know who laid right on top of it. My plan is to wait until the blanket is finished, banish YI to the bedroom, and take some pics of it on the floor before I throw it in the washer.

My spinning wheel calls to me - lol. We bought it at the Stitching Post (used to be down on 10th, sold knitting machines, yarn, books, some roving, and WHEELS). It came in pieces, unstained, in a box with an instruction sheet. It took me almost a week to decide what color to stain it.

At one point, all the stained pieces were drying in a back bedroom, and all I could think of was "How the heck is this thing going to come together and be a real spinning wheel!!" But I put it mostly together by myself with a little help from hubby (I wanted him to do the staining and finishing but nooooo...he thought the building part would be the most fun, too).

After it was put together, it was so beautiful I didn't want to even use it. But I finally got up my courage, got on the internet, and found a list of spinners. Several were very kind and helped me through the first few steps via email. They recommended books, I got the books. They recommended places to buy roving, I bought roving. I took a couple of lessons at the Stitiching Post and was off and running.

BTW, the Stitching Post was where I first saw roving being spun! I used to go there because they were the only place in town with a good selection of knitting machine magazines. Anyway, one day I was working my way back to the yarn section and in the middle of the shop was a lady spinning! On an Ashford Traditional! Did I want to try it? Hmmm...I watched her for a few more minutes and thought - why not! The rest, well you know the saying about history and all.

So my wheel calls to me (but so does the knitting machine, the beading, and the naked Barbie dolls lined up in a row on the cabinet). And I have CUT BACK on the amount of crafts I do so I could focus on knitting, well, on fiber (the beads aren't my fault, my niece Celia FORCED me to get back into jewelry making). And I still have a business to run that sucks up all my daylight hours.

Well, I have an open house tomorrow so will be taking the blanket to work on in case it's not very busy. I WANT TO SPIN!!

Friday, January 20, 2006


Both Ali and Rosemary asked me about spinning. I've been spinning off and on for the last eight years or so. I tried a drop spindle once - and I dropped it! I never tried it again. If I'm going to look that uncoordinated I'd rather be on roller blades.

I have an Ashford Traditional and I really love it (the white label reminds me to spin in one direction and ply in the other - duh - I can never remember otherwise!). I just haven't had much time to use it. And I'll be honest, spinning is fun but kinda of boring. Once you get the rythm and the draft right, not much changes.

But I'm looking forward to spinning the rest of the tote bag because:
1. I have a drum carder
2. I have "Spinning in Color" by Deb Menz
So rather than just do boring one color spinning, I'm going to run some of those bright easter egg dyed rovings through the drum carder together and see what comes out.

And spinning isn't hard. Just takes a certain amount of coordination and practice (like roller blading only safer). For my first piece of practice spinning, I got some soft white roving. And spun it into a very trendy (at the time) thick and thicker handspun. I then dyed parts of it with kool-aid. If that humiliation wasn't enough, I knitted it up into slipper socks for ME! I absolutely love them. They're ugly, warm, soft, comfortable, and make great bed socks in those years when we actually have cold weather.

Did I mention ugly?!?! But I'm kind of proud of them. This was my first bit of spinning, pretty much self taught, and my first attempt at dying yarn. I really needed to make it into something useable to prove the wheel was SOMETHING I WOULD USE.

But we live in Oklahoma, not exactly a "wool-wearing weather" part of the country so I spin but I don't knit with it too much (I have one sweater I've made from my own handspun). I just fill up boxes with roving and handspun yarn. But if the ice age ever comes back, I'll be ready.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Getting Behind

It's always a great day when you can work a little and visit with friends a lot and come away feeling good about both. But you still need to put at least 2" a night on the baby blanket.

No need for a picture of the blanket, sigh, it's only 4" longer than last time. I really shouldn't make dishclothes and hats. They go so fast that when faced with a substantial project like this easy baby blanket, it seems to take forever (hmmm...I've been working on it all of seven days). In all actuality, I should have it done before the end of the month.

And how annoying is it to find your YI curled up on hubby's side of the bed, on hubby's sweatshirt, ignoring you completely because you wouldn't let her pull yet another piece of wadded up paper out of the trash to play with. It's not like she couldn't play with the four pieces she already fished out, for Pete's sake!

Off to work on the blanket.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Did You See This?

Sometimes I can't believe how crazy companies are. I ran across this on Cafepress today. Isn't it interesting how companies try to claim a word as their own private copyrighted word! It's amazing nerve, and not in a good way.

I have looked everywhere for this bear pattern. I can't remember where I found it! I'm still looking, I haven't given up. And you can see I had a lot more time back when I first started real estate - lol! Now I may have one bear finished but I have several just waiting to be sewn up and stuffed. I should see what Clanci would charge for that!

I've spent most of the day sniffling, sneezing, and snuffling. My allergies have kicked in big time so I haven't felt like accomplishing much. No spinning and only about 2" on the baby blanket this evening. Hopefully I'll feel a little more productive tomorrow.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Do You Knit at the Movies?

I usually do. This afternoon we went and saw this. OH! MY! GOSH! This was excellent! If you like special effects AND a good plot (even better than the original), go see this in a movie theater. I promise - you won't regret it!

As I said, I normally take "movie knitting" with me. Mindless, don't have to look at, keep the hands busy knitting. I took the side of the next felted tote bag. Easy knitting. I knit through the coming attractions, I knit though the build-up, I knit through the first encounter on the island. But after that, I had to work on reminding myself to BREATHE, let alone knit.

But, when we got home and I took a look at my tote bag, I made a very unfortunate discovery. I'm out of yarn!! Well, I have enough to do a couple more inches but after than I'm stuck. So I dug around, found my stash of roving, and sure enough, I've got the right colors.

Now I have to turn this:

into this:

Yes, I see the ears. I also noticed, as I was getting the next picture, she was walking away, smaking her lips. Kind of like kids do when they try to eat too much peanut butter. I didn't SEE a mouth touch anything but she was hiding behind the stack.

So now I have to find time to fit in some spinning. I like to spin during the day because the light is so good in my fiber room. We'll just see how fast that tote bag gets done now! I might have to start the
enterlac bag. I bought both the book and the yarn (not in those colors) at Gourmet Yarn. Margaret and Kay helped me pick out some lovely purple and blue. When I get it started I'll post some pics of the yarn.

What...a baby blanket...oh, yes...I do have that little project to work on.

Monday, January 16, 2006

The Baby Blanket

I forgot today was a holiday! In my job, we don't have actual holidays, we have to choose to take a day off. And usually a holiday is the perfect time for others to go out looking at houses so my holidays are often busy. Well, with the exceptions of Christmas Day, New Years Day, and Easter. Those days we turn our phones off.

But it was still pretty quiet. I only did one showing. So I was able to spent some time working on the baby blanket:

I have about 9" done so far - only 20-some" left to do. The picture really doesn't do it justice. The colors are so pale they just don't show up very well. But I'm making it on size 9 needles so it's going pretty fast. And for easy lace-like fabric, you just can't go wrong with the old feather and fan pattern.

I also have been getting back into beading a little. By that I mean, I bought a new beading book and have been drooling over the jewelry. I also found another one I wish I bought so I've got it ready to order from Amazon. It's more my speed. Time is of the essense! (they teach us that in real estate and I've taken it as one of my life's mottos).

And I worked on my writing assignment for this creative writing class I'm taking. Boy, there are a lot of creative people in the world! I've been impressed by several of my online classmates. Their writing ability totally overshadows most of the other class members. At any rate, it's going to be an interesting time.

I'm so excited about the number of OK (that OK as in Oklahoma not OK as in not great) knitters with blogs! I'll be adding them to my daily reading list (no pressure). Just check my side bar for the new arrivals. And if I'm missing someone, please let me know.

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Guild is the Greatest

What a great time at Guild today! Thank goodness Kay brought her camera and sent me pictures because, of course, I forgot mine:

Here's Kathy, Terri, and Anita diligently working on their program swatches. We learned how to make both a left twist and a right twist cable WITHOUT using a cable needle.

Here is Emily and Rose. Emily is wearing her first finished sweater and Rose is wearing a scarf she made.

We had about 15 or 16 ladies at the meeting. There is nothing as much fun as getting with fellow knitters for a couple of hours. And they got "A's" on learning the cable technique.

It looks like we will be moving to the Belle Isle Library for our meetings soon. We have Anita to thank for that (let's all say - THANK YOU, ANITA). And we have a logo and a little herd of lambs I'll be getting trademarked for the Guild (let's all say - THANK YOU, KAY'S SISTER). Kay's sister (whose name I obviously don't know) created the logs for us and they are really super. You can see the main one at MetroOKCKnitGuild on Yahoo groups. And we should also say THANK YOU KAY, for asking her sister to make these for us.

Plenty of activities, fun, programs, and more coming up at the Guild this year. If you haven't been, please come. Everyone is welcome, no dues, no membership requirements (well, it helps if you knit and if you don't we'll teach you) and a super friendly group to hang out with. Let us help feed your fiber addiction!

Saturday, January 14, 2006

Writer's Wonderland

I recently signed up for an online creative writing class here. The first assignment came out on Wednesday and today is the first day I've had time (and felt up to it) to start working on it. I made the mistake of reading some of the finished assignments. Wow! There are some truly talented people taking this course. Talk about intimidating. But I'm really looking forward to learning something. My ultimate plan is to see if I have any talent at all in the area of writing. Retirement is coming up in a few years and the idea of starting a new career is very appealing.

I am just now to the part of the day I can do some knitting. I have Law and Order season 4 ready to pop in the computer as soon as I'm done with my entry. And I have 128 stitches worth of baby blanket with four rows done so far. This time I'm keeping track of how many rows I can do in an hour. I'm not the world's fastest knitter but I have a couple of other projects to work on (the bee stitch dishcloth, for one) so this one needs to be out the door as soon as possible.

So no pictures tonight. No knitting to share. YI spent most of the afternoon sleeping on my right arm so typing was interesting to say the least. And if I moved her the tiniest amount, she would complain in her sleep - sheesh!

Tomorrow is the Guild meeting. I'm really looking forward to it. There is no energy in the world like the energy created by a group of knitters. An addictive high, for sure!

Friday, January 13, 2006

Friday the 13th

Not a good day at my house either. While I didn't get the "carnival ride" poor Kay did, I've felt miserable all day. Almost too miserable to knit (I did say ALMOST). Certainly to miserable to actually do any work on the computer (unless it was knit-related).

I did manage to finish side two of the next felted tote.

I have it folded in half because the ends are curling so badly. And what's that you ask? Where is the YI? Here is the BEFORE picture:

Notice how she is studiously ignoring me. This is how our picture-taking sessions usually start. Then we do the "move the cat, take the picture fast, move the cat again, hold the cat out of the way, take the picture fast, move the cat, finally give up and let the cat put ONE FOOT on the item and take the picture" dance. Although if you notice the above picture, she didn't bother putting her foot on it. Guess she figured she'd already won - she WAS laying on it.

Last night I finally got around to ordering Odd Ball Knitting from Amazon. I'd checked it out of the library before Christmas and didn't want to take it back. It should be here in about a week. Of course I couldn't order just one book! I wanted to save money so I ordered a couple more to get the FREE shipping. I love Amazon!

Thursday, January 12, 2006

The Three Mouseketeers

Does it sometimes seem like I only have one cat?

This is an unusual photo with all three hanging out around the cat tree. I apologize for the picture quality and photo angle. The top used to be Rimsky's sole domain but you can see who has it now. Every so often I see Rimsky sharing it with Sugar or I see Blue sharing it with Sugar but mostly I see Sugar sharing it with NO ONE. For the baby of the family, she has definitely taken over.

It's nice to have a cat who likes yarn but it's even nicer to not have THREE cats who like yarn.

And now I'm off to do my Guild homework. And hopefully get the other side of the tote finished so I can start the baby blanket.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

The Inspector Hard at Work

Can you believe this?!?!

Guess where I keep my wool-in-progress...

And she was purring as loud as possible the whole time. She looks a little high on lanolin! You can not turn your back on her for one second if there is wool around.

Or any other kind of yarn. It is very disconcerting to see a black flash go by with a white ball in its mouth only to discover the black flash has your cotton knit boob you just washed and had left sitting out to dry...

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Festive Fiesta

While waiting around for yet another heart test (my heart is fine, thank you), I finished another DW dishcloth in Fiesta.

This one is on size 6 needles with 34 sts of Fiesta Peaches and Cream. Great color, nice size. It's already out the door for my first closing in January.

And, of course, the obligatory picture of the YI doing her thing while I'm trying to take pictures. I love making dishcloths - talk about instant gratification. I've printed out the pattern for the bee stitch and will be trying it next using the Fiesta.

I'm not much on shopping at Wal-Mart but after hearing how their selection of colors in Peaches and Cream is so large, I may have to just zip in and take a look!

And of course I was at Hobby Lobby today to pick up yarn for the new baby blanket. Got Bette's Feather and Fan pattern and will be starting that soon (maybe even tonight).

And here's what one side of the unfelted tote looks like:

I'm really curious as to how much the colors will mute when I felt it. I'm hoping I have enough yarn to finish the other side. I'd forgotten I was going to have to make it double to get the felted size I want. Guess we'll see.

And I have "Stitch and Bitch" reserved at the library - can't wait to see the hat mentioned in the comments yesterday.

Monday, January 09, 2006

It's Official!

My niece Celia is pregnant! It's her first and I'm so excited! I'm already making knitting plans. Celia stayed with us for about three months last summer while she went to Air Traffic Controller school. She passed, of course, with flying colors and she and her hubby Charles, moved to California (though I tried to talk her into staying - we have planes here for pete' sake).

Aren't they cute! They celebrated their first wedding anniversary while she was here. And what a sweetheart, he drove up from Abilene, TX about every other weekend to see her.

So when I talked to her tonight, it was just to be sure she had told her grandparents (my parents) so I could finally talk about it. And I made sure they both know I want monthly updates.

Now I can't decide whether to make a hooded baby blanket or a feather and fan blanket to start. And as soon as they know if it's a boy or girl, then the fun will start. I have some favorite baby patterns AND some that look like they'd be fun to try.

All those UFOs are going to be sitting a while longer, but what's time in stash-years. And I'll still be working on the next felted tote. I finished one side tonight but no pics cause I wanted to share the good news with you.

So what's YOUR favorite baby thing to make? What gets the most ooohhhs and aaahhs? What's the fastest or most satisfying or even the most fun baby item you've made? Because, yes, I want MORE ideas!

Saturday, January 07, 2006

Knitters Are Such Fun!

Tonight was the monthly Knit-In at Gourmet Yarn. What a great group! I got there late because I had to work but even arriving an hour into the event found the group going full swing. The energy level just soars in a room full of people brandishing pointy sticks and swirling yards of multicolored yarn into wonderful things.

I watched one member warping an Inkle Loom to make beautiful bookmarks, another was working on a gorgeous afghan, I saw scarfs and sweaters, the Berroco tote (twice! Both in the green Suede, two different knitters), a finished garter stitch baby sweater (so pretty, so soft!), some felted coasters, and all sorts of wonderous items. Laughter and needles just flew. I hated to tear myself away but had to leave early.

Here are momentos of the evening:

There are a number of informal knitting groups around the city. If you knit, if you want to learn to knit, if you just want to be part of an energy flow...come to one of these little get-togethers. You can never have too much yarn, too many patterns, or too many knitterly friends!

Metro OKC Knitting Guild meets the 3rd Sunday every month. You're all invited. We just started in October so get involved at the ground floor (so to speak)! The other group I'm involved in is the Knitty Committee. It meets the 4th Saturday of every month. Very informal and we welcome anyone who likes fiber - crocheters, cross stitchers, we've even had someone come with a drop spindle. Oh yeah, and knitters.

I had mentioned in an earlier post about Sugar, aka YI, sleeping on my felted tote. I finally caught her in mid catnap on it:

My "sneaking up" woke her up! And she was none to pleased to have the flash go off:

So a Kitty Pi is on my list of things to eventually make as I think she would actually sleep in it.

And here is my next felted bag. It's modeled after a paper lunch sack only with handles (I'm making it up as I go along). See how cleverly it's striping. I wish I could say I was changing the yarn but in reality, it is SELF-STRIPING!! Who would have thought!

I've got four rows of garter at the end but it still curls. The colors are so much fun. I can't wait to see how this felts up. So, anyway, to get the picture I'm holding the curl down and trying to keep YI (yes, the black nose in the corner) from another full body inspection. She likes yarn - she REALLY likes wool!

And the ugly sweater will soon be restored to yarn balls. I was thinking though, do you think it would look good as a shawl?

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Another Finished Object

Now I realize I posted this yesterday but today it really IS done. I give you the baby hat and matching sunsuit:

Two views, no less! They are in the finished items box and boy am I glad. There's at least one item I'll no longer have laying around. And notice how the blue bottoms and the hat look like the same color! I think that must be a miracle!

And here is the rest of the yarn to be finished into at least two, maybe three pocketbook size felted project bags:

I really NEED to work on these because they were originally part of a UFO (the bloom shawl) and as such certainly qualify for the same status. Not to mention they're practically the original yarn I spun when I got my spinning wheel YEARS ago.

Sugar, aka the Yarn Inspector, spent most of yesterday and today sleeping on my newly felted tote bag. But when I went to take a picture of her, do you think she would cooperate-HA! But it does make me think I need to make her a Kitty Pi. I'll have to buy more yarn...

Also got my 2006 catalog from Fire Mountain Gems in the mail today. What fun! I've been noticing a lot of ideas for beads besides jewelry. There's stitch markers, row counter bracelets, scissor point protectors, I could go on. Anyway, enough different ideas to warrent having the catalog (like I need an excuse). Plus the catalog has jewelry ideas every few pages. It's fun to look at, drool over, and dream. Some day I plan to make a row counter bracelet with matching stitch markers. Yes, let me just add those to the end of my To Do project list. Hmmm...the project list doesn't seem to HAVE an end. I could be in big trouble here!

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

A Finished Object!

I don't know how some of you do it. Work, knit, make an almost daily entry in your blog, have a life...Very impressive! My plan to post every three days is STILL hard to keep up with - lol.

Anyway I have a finished object! The felted tote - ready for use (more or less):

I like it but...see how floppy the handles are? I want to reinforce them a little or they are going to pull all out of shape when I use it. I'm also going to put a snap on it to hold the edges together so nothing falls out. So I'm thinking I might use velcro along the handle edges and see if that helps. Not that any of this will stop me from using it. Aside from the floppy handles, I really like the way it turned out.

And here is the sweater I mentioned. The one I don't know if I'm going to keep or frog:

YOW! It looks pretty ugly on the hanger! Great pooling, too! Here's a close up of the stitch:

This is the linen stitch. I was really curious to see what it would look like with a variegated yarn. But as you can tell from the picture of the sweater, I didn't have quite enough variegate to finish it, so I found something in my stash that matched. This is regular old Red Heart and a basic pattern I'd created for myself ages ago. Do you think it would look better as a short sleeve semi-heavy t-shirt? Please leave your opinion - I need your help!!

And last but not least - the blue baby hat. All I have left is the last two I-cord topnotches, then sew up the back. I have checked the size on this every few inches - it BETTER BE RIGHT!!

Not that this is an official FO...tomorrow it'll be official :)

Until then...

Oh...wait...I forgot to mention, Kathy C. found me THREE balls of Fiesta cotton - YEAH!! So I'm going to make one more DW cloth and then I'm going to try the bee st with the Fiesta yarn.

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Happy New Year!!

Hope everyone is enjoying their New Year's Day! And I am especially excited because I felted my tote bag this morning and it looks GREAT! Here are the pictures:

In a previous life, this is the yarn I used. From my UFO list is the Bloom Shawl, made from my own handspun, easter egg dyed wool. I realized I would never wear a wool shawl and wasn't really thrilled about how it was turning out. So I frogged it and it became this:

Pre-felting. I realized after I felted the tote, this picture is sideways. Those openings are actually the handles. But you can see the color changes pretty well. I also forgot to measure it. I'll be doing a before and after measurement from now on. And it felted up like this:

Yes, that IS the Yarn Inspector giving it her stamp or I should say "Paw" of approval. It turned out great. The picture is a little fuzzy as I was trying to keep the YI from giving it her full body approval by laying on it. The colors are very subtle and the bottom is square. It is drying now (I need to see if anyone is laying on it!) and I'm already planning the next felted project.

I have quite a lot of small balls of wool I spun and dyed back before real estate. These will become project bags. I picked up the book "Bags - a Knitter's Dozen" at Gourmet Yarn yesterday as well as yarn to make the "Market Squares" bag found on page 2. But I also like the felted pocketbook on page 12 and will probably use that as my guide for the project bags.

Are you making resolutions for 2006? No, me either. But I am putting together a list of goals. I didn't get much knitting done in 2005 except for a handful of "No Hair Day" hats which I'm still wearing (I have "boy" hair - it's still really short but it IS growing). I didn't use the yarn called for, I used Fun Fur and any other fuzzy yarn I felt like. Although I just realized I'm wearing a sweater I must have finished in February (the last month before everything happened). But I didn't weave in the ends! Even though I have it on, I'm still not sure I like it well enough to keep it - how funny is that!! I'll try to remember to post a pic of it when I take it off.

So back to the goals, I have a handful of UFOs I mentioned in an earlier post but today my plan was to felt the tote bag and start the blue baby hat. I need to get those in the finished box soon! I have a couple of sweaters to finish so am going to try REALLY hard to work on them and not buy yarn for sweaters until these are done (we'll see if this will actually work in real life).

One of the big reasons for starting this blog is to keep a record of what I knit this year. I've already started a picture file for 2006 (and it already has an entry in it!! I don't care if I knit most of it the last week of 2005, I'm counting it!).

I still have some medical challenges to deal with this year but with my pointy sticks, yarn, and good friends, I'm looking forward to 2006.