Summer Knitting

I’m trying to ignore the fact that it’s been a month and half since I posted anything on this blog . . . so I’ll jump right in!

First up on my list is preemie hats!! I’ve been working on some preemie hats for the Duke NICU and dropped off 8 of them this morning!! My sister actually crocheted one (the green one in the middle). Just hope these will bring some smiles and hope to the Moms whose babies are in the NICU.

preemie caps July 2014

Camp Loopy Project #1 is in the books. The challenge was to knit a project of at least 400 yards that is inspired by your favorite book, movie or TV show. I knit the “Song of the Sea” cowl in the Deep Sea colorway by Manos del Uruguay (serena). Inspired by the one and only: Jaws. I watch that movie at least once every summer. Here it is:

Camp Loopy 2014 1

I did in fact watch Jaws once while knitting this!

Camp Loopy #2 is going to be a bit of a challenge to complete. Originally I planned to knit the “Passeggiata” shawl. All garter stitch, triangular, two colors. Easy. But it just wasn’t grabbing me. The other day, I decided that I’d switch up my projects and knit a “Leftie” by Martina Behm. With 17 days to go, it won’t be easy! I’m using one skein of Cascade Heritage Sock yarn in Sage and one skein of SweetGeorgia’s Tough Love Sock. I believe this colorway is Autumn Wind. It’s also mostly garter stitch but the leaves between each section really break it up and add interest. Love how it looks so far. The first few repeats have gone fast – need to keep up my momentum if I have ANY hope of finishing by July 31st. I have two weekends and some already planned vacation in July so hopefully — it will be done.

leftie 1

In other fun knitting news . . . my niece is learning to knit! She wanted to jump right in with a pair of socks, but I talked her into a scarf first just to get comfortable with the stitches. We had a “Knit Night” at their house yesterday. Lots of fun!!

Finally finished reading Stephen King’s “Dr. Sleep”. SOOOO good!! Good to know what happened to Danny Torrence after he and his Mom escaped the Overlook!

I wanted to go ahead and finish “Gone Girl” — but when I picked it up I realized I really need to start over!!

Happy Knitting and Crafting All!

Finishing Frenzy

Nothing like a solo trip to help get some knitting done. I flew up to Vermont to see my Dad on Memorial Day weekend. Lots of sitting around in airports and on planes – and lots of time to knit. I managed to finish a couple things (before I came home and cast on a bunch more!). First up was my pair of orange ankle socks knit in Fab Funky Fibres hand-dyed yarn in a merino/cashmere/nylon blend. The color way is “Camp Fire” and that touch of cashmere in it made it so lovely to knit. So soft — I kind of wish I’d made a full sized sock out it. The colors are gorgeous. The picture below doesn’t do it justice. There may be enough left over for another pair of ankle socks. I may just need to purchase some more though – and wouldn’t that be a pity!! ;)

Fab Funky Fibres in Camp Fire

Fab Funky Fibres in Camp Fire

I did purchase a skein of Fab Funky Fibres self-striping sock yarn and cast on with it pretty much right away. No cashmere so it’s not quite as soft, but once again, the colors are gorgeous – truly FAB! I’m making them top down, as you can see, and will do an after-thought heel. I haven’t given up on that heel just yet!! Plus, I really don’t want to interrupt the lovely striping with a heel flap and gusset.

FFF stripe socks

The best part of the weekend was getting to meet my newest niece – finally!! And to give her the yellow sweater. It was hard to get a good straight on shot of her with the sweater on. As most toddlers do – she was on the move pretty much non-stop! I’d forgotten what it’s like to have a toddler in the house. But she’s gorgeous and smart and sweet and I’m just totally in love! There will surely be more hand-knits headed her way. . .

Nora in sweater side view

My second Brickless is also done! It’s knit from Madelinetosh Pashmina in the colorway “Iris”. I love it. This one is definitely for me. Posted a picture in the Knitmore Girls Behm-Along thread. Martina Behm designs interesting, fun and gorgeous patterns.

Blue Brickless Complete

What’s on the needles now (that I’m really working on that is): Song of the Sea Cowl for Camp Loopy, the FFF socks shown above, a pair of monkey socks, and “Agnes” a sweater from Quince & Co that I cast on recently. I think I have enough yarn left over from Anna’s November blanket to make it. It’s a nice chunky pullover – with side pockets. Pictures to come!!

Also participating in “Stash Dash” sponsored by the KnitGirlls. I just started watching them recently and am hooked. Both projects I recently finished can count toward Stash Dash. This should motivate me to get moving.

That’s it for now . . . happy knitting everyone!

Everyone Else Has One

The day before Mother’s Day I was out shopping with my daughter.  We stopped in AC Moore for a minute – not for anything knitting related, but I did find myself over in the yarn section somehow.  I hadn’t really been looking for it, but noticed they had some of the Patons Kroy sock yarn in Blue Striped Rag (I think that’s the name) that it seems like EVERYONE has been knitting.  When my back was turned, somehow two balls ended up in my basket!!  What do you know?!

Since I had the yarn anyway, the next day I cast on for a pair of socks.  I did top down with an after-thought heel.  By the magic of Mother’s Day I knit almost a whole sock in one day!  All but the heel.  The next day I cast on the second one, and 8 days later ended up with a pair. 

Image

I have to say, I’m not sure how I feel about the after-thought heel.  My first attempt was a few weeks ago (on a sock that still needs a mate)

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I followed the pattern as it was written. The one modification I made was to knit 6 full rounds on the heel before starting the decrease (I did this for the Patons Kroy socks) rather than the 3 in the pattern. With three, the heel feels a bit tight. So I’ve been researching other heel constructions and would like to try the Sweet Tomato by Cat Bordhi. Seems straightforward enough. I’d also like to create a more rounded toe. More research.

The one other sock I completed recently is an ankle sock made out of Fab Funky Fibres sock yarn in Camp Fire. This yarn is gorgeous. The picture doesn’t do the colors justice – and soft! Love it!! I’ve got another skein on the way in a self-striping that I know I won’t be able to resist casting on right away!!

Orange Sock

Memorial Day weekend is almost upon us – and my trip to see my Dad and my little niece! Can’t wait!! The second orange sock will be my travel companion . . . depending on how much I get done before I leave, I may need to bring something else.

All I’m reading lately is knitting books!! Patterns at that!! Trying to come up with a theme for summer reading – maybe the Summer of Jane Austin?? Or something like that!!

Lovely Little Sweater

Yellow sweater finished

In just about two weeks I’m finally going to get to meet my step-sister’s baby!! Her parents are really great about putting gorgeous pictures of her on Facebook and Instagram, showing off her amazing smile and eyes. I can’t wait to meet her in person!! I’m bringing her the pretty little sweater shown above. It’s “In Threes” on Ravelry. Super easy to knit. I used some Cascade 220 “Quattro” that I purchased at Yarns Etc last summer during their Christmas in July sale. I bought it precisely to make something for Miss Nora and here it finally is.

This is my first attempt at sewing in a grosgrain button band. Not half bad, if I do say so myself! And now I have the beginnings of a grosgrain stash! The little bumble bee buttons are just too cute for words. Can’t wait to give it to her — and to see her model it!! I’m sure I’ll take lots of photos.

That’s it for finished objects lately . . . other than a couple of single socks and some preemie hats — all of which have ends that need to be woven in. I want to make a couple more preemie hats before delivering them to Duke’s NICU. I did try an after-thought heel on one of the socks, and it worked out really well – I used a “rip cord” method so I didn’t need to cut my knitting. It’s great for self-striping yarn – doesn’t break up the pattern.

I still have several socks on the needles, a lace top for myself, a sweater for my husband, a couple shawls. They will all get finished eventually. Problem is I have such beautiful yarn in my stash, I don’t want to wait to knit with any of it!!

I purchased some Addi Sock Rocket needles – LOVE THEM. Ordered a couple more pairs today. I got a couple in 40″ so I can try my hand at making two socks at a time. Talk about smooth. I don’t know if they really make you knit you faster, but I was sure knitting happier with them!

Finally . . . two Christmases ago I knit up a zebra hat and mittens for my nephew who loves zebras. Here are my improvised zebra mittens:

zebra

Well, I was browsing on the Knitter’s Brewing Company website and found zebra dyed yarn to make:

Zebra socks

There’s a little ruffle at the top which I’ll leave off for him. But this is soo cool!!

Haven’t done much reading lately. BUT, my son informed me last night that he’d read “Of Mice and Men” in school and he proceeded to give me an analysis of the book. I was dumb-struck!!! I’ve been waiting for one of my kids to find literature as exciting as I do!!! Happy day for sure!

Happy Knitting All!!

Knitting Discipline

Last week I laid out my plan to get my startosis problem under control – and hopefully to start to see some progress on my projects and get some finished objects to show off soon. I gave each of my Top Four a little love this week. So — progress but still — it will be sometime before these are finished since I’m still not being monogamous to any of them!

The Brickless – just finished the fourth section and will start the fifth lacey part tonight. This pattern is so easy to memorize. It’s perfect knitting for TV watching. And it’s SOOO pretty. I do love knitting it. I just saw a picture of a finished Leftie in the Ravelry groups – so of course I want to go and work on that one now. But NO!! It has to wait!!

Brickless March 17

My Lollipop yarn sock is coming right along . . . just working down the foot toward the toe. I hope I don’t end up with 2nd sock syndrome!! Socks are pretty good TV knitting as well – but I do forget where I am on the gusset sometimes — Did I just do an increase row??

Sock Update

Got a slow start on my Waving Lace Top . . . long rows. Progress will be slow no matter what!

Waving Lace Top One

I’ve recruited my sister to crochet some preemie caps for me. Man did she whip off this little green cap in about a half an hour! It’s soo cute! I had to re-start my yellow cap. Knitting attack – a bunch of stitches fell off the needles and I wasn’t able to recoup!

Preemie Update 2

I FINALLY made one of the Cookie A recipes this weekend. The Chocolate Crinkles . . . they are delicious and addicting. I have eaten WAY too many of these.

Cookie A Cookies Feb

Haven’t done much reading. My daughter came home for a few days – we watched a lot of old movies from when the kids were babies. They were soooo cute!! Just squeezable. Glad I did squeeze them a lot when I had the chance! Also saw Evita on Saturday night – quite enjoyable.

Happy Knitting this week!!!

Knitting New Year

Well, I’m never going to gain any traction with this blog if I write only every other month! I keep thinking about doing a podcast, but if I can’t keep up with a blog — that’s probably not going to happen!

I’ve had a serious case of “Startosis” the past couple of months. To quote the refrain heard all throughout the knitverse – “I WANT TO KNIT IT ALL!” And, I want it done really, really fast!

I had grand plans for year long gift knitting that really, as it turns out, don’t mesh well with the selfish knitting I want to do. The number of items that I’ve made and kept for myself is really pretty small. I don’t want to head into the fall season again without one nice cardigan, a couple of hats and fingerless gloves and cool scarves. And socks! Don’t forget the socks! I have three pairs of knitted socks to my name — and obviously need more. And thus, Ijoined two sock clubs: Socks that Rock and Cookie A.

Since January I have discovered (and purchased from) several new yarn companies: Knitters Brewing Company, Abstract Fibers, Blue Moon Fiber Arts and Dragonfly Fibers. I hope I got all those names right. There were also the odd purchases from Knit Picks. So I have have a beautiful stash!! Love to just go look at it.

Yarn Diet is imposed as of March 1st. So far, so good!

The startosis has left me with numerous projects on the needles. So, there really hasn’t been a lot of progress on anything. So I decided to take four projects and put them all into one big knitting basket, and the rest go into hibernation. My four active projects are now:

1. A second Brickless for myself made out of Madelintosh Pashmina in Iris. Pictures forthcoming. I’m on the 4th pattern repeats. It attacked me but good a couple of weeks ago, but we’re back on track.

2. A pair of vanilla socks in Lollipop Yarns “Happy Go Lucky” colorway. Oh, I just love Lollipop yarns. Feels like silk in your hands!! SOO hard to get a skein. Good think I’m on that yarn diet so I won’t be tempted to try!

3. A preemie hat. I’ve decided to knit some preemie hats for the Duke NICU. I have finished knitting one in “Blush” a pale pick in Knit Picks Brava. I have a whole bunch of Knit Picks Brava for preemie hats. Next up is a yellow. These are quick knits.

4. I got to cast on one new project last night – Waving Lace Top. This one is in Dream in Color Smooshy with cashmere. Nice summery top. The color is “Starless Sky” – just love that.

So when I’m done the Brickless – I will pick up and finish either my Leftie, new Color Affection or the 2nd Hitchhiker. The socks will be replaced with socks (a pair in Knit Picks Felici, another lollipop pair and one Sock Club socks). Hopefully this will give me enough variety.

I did set aside one other pair of socks from the February Cookie A club – just about to do the heel flap on the first one. So if I get totally bored with my four active projects, I can work on those.

Now for a couple photos of items finished in 2014 so far:

A pair of mittens for me. Got this yarn from Vermont Wood company on Etsy. Love, love. love it!

yellow mitts

When I visited my daughter last weekend, she was eyeing them! But, she’s already stolen one pair of mittens!! Fun socks in Felici “Cheer” by Knit Picks:

2nd pair felici vanilla

I’ll take some update photos of my other projects and post soon!

As for reading, I just started “Death by Food Pyramid” – supposed to be very good. I may need to pick up some other light reading a long with this!

Happy Knitting to All!!

Aimless Knitting

Now that my Christmas knitting is done, and I can knit whatever I want with no deadlines, I’m having a lot of trouble settling in on a project. Really, really bouncing around and not really putting much time into anything. I have several pairs of socks going . . .

bunch of socks

And that doesn’t count the one comfy sock I’ve made for my husband that still needs a mate!! The pink/green/gray stripe socks are in Lollipop Yarns “Doo Wah Diddy”. Talk about lovely to knit with. I really could not wait to get started on these. There are quite a few issues (mostly from some stitches falling off the double points when I put them down for a moment). But I’ve soldiered on, trying not to let it bother me. You can’t really tell from the picture, but the heel is done in just the green (they sent along a separate ball of green for heels and toes). I felt like I won the lottery getting some Lollipop yarn – it sells out so fast!! The pinkish socks are in SweetGeorgia Yarns Tough Love sock yarn. Trying an afterthought heel on this pair. And the final pair is in Patons Kroy – just toe up.

I have several more Martina Behm scarves going . . .

bunch of scarves

A “Leftie” with a kit from Miss Babs (the gray with the pink and red “leaves”). I don’t think I’m making the leaves 100% correctly, but they look right so I’m just going with it. It’s an issue of “picking up wraps” that’s got me puzzled. So I’m not picking them up. Maybe I need to watch a YouTube video on this. A second “Brickless” for me in Madelintosh Pashmina (in Blue Iris). And a “Hitchhiker” in SweetGeorgia in Marjun – their December sock yarn club selection. I have a feeling the hitchhiker is going to get frogged. It’s fingering weight yarn and now that I’ve been wearing my first Hitchhiker in a heavier weight – that’s what seems right to me. Just not sure.

Have made a bit of progress on June’s Favorite:

june update

I know I’m going to love this sweater. I should try to be a bit more devoted to it. Maybe this will be my Olympics project.

I spent a good amount of time trying to update my stash in Ravelry over the holiday weekend. At one time, I had it all updated, but that was short-lived. I’m trying to be a bit methodical about this, and hope to get it all caught up by next weekend. It would be good to keep track of this so I know what I’ve got – and basically where it is!! I did make quite a few yarn purchases in January – mostly with specific projects in mind. But I’m cutting myself off now!! I did join two yarn clubs – Socks that Rock and Cookie A, so I’ll have some new yarns to look forward to during the year. I really need to spend some time working from my stash!

Still reading “For Whom the Bell Tolls”. Slow read for me. I keep thinking it’s going to pick up at some point.