Tuesday, September 15, 2009

There Has Been Knitting

It has been a long time since I posted again, and a lot has happened in my life. I stopped working about a year ago, and it seems I'm finally starting to adjust. There were months where I hardly knit, but I am back in the swing of things, and knitting mostly socks at the moment. I do have two shawls in progress, and a sweater for myself as well. I recently finished these socks, done with handpainted Wildfoote from the Brown Sheep Company in the colorway Rhapsody. The socks had not been washed yet (gasp) when the photos were taken because I didn't have any white vinegar, and Brown Sheep suggests you wash with vinegar the first time, I'm assuming to help set the colors.
I used a Slipped-Stitch Rib Pattern from Sensational Knitted Socks. These are for my niece, who likes her socks short.

I had my picture taken with Hawkeye our regional baseball team's mascot last week. (Go Redhawks Northern League Champions 2009!) I love Hawkeye and have since I first saw him. He is adorable and makes me giggle and smile and I couldn't resist asking him to hold my sock. You can't tell it's a sock yet and I look like a dope but it didn't make a bit of difference at the time.

I made some brown beaded socks out of Pagewood Farms Cashmere Sock. The pattern is Seeds and Beads by Wendy McDonnell. I don't have a shot on a foot, but here they are done. The socks slouch between the beaded rows and it creates a lovely spiral effect. This yarn is pure heaven on your feet, and once I got used to placing the beads with the crochet hook, I was on my way.I have a couple of other pairs of socks done, and two more on the needles.

I will try to get more photos and post again shortly. I'd like to be a better blogger when the weather cools off. I have spent most of my time knitting outside this summer like this: And I don't expect that will last for a whole lot longer. Until then, me and my buddy will bask in the sunshine, knit and chase squirrels.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Red Socks

I finished the red socks about a month ago, shortly after my last post. My daughter loves them, and I think they turned out very nice. These socks fit like a glove, due to the ribbing on the sides of the foot (you can see in the third picture the best). I will be making another pair with this pattern for sure. I have finished a pair of brown beaded socks too, but they haven't had their pictures taken yet. I will get to that shortly. (Click pictures to enlarge.)

I have gotten back to my Landscape Shawl and am loving the progress on it so far. I am nearing the end of the first skein and enjoy the process very much.

I have discovered Audible and listened to my first book while I was knitting last month. It was The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini. It is read by the author, so the pronunciations of all the names and places (it was set mostly in Afghanistan) were done for me, and I truly enjoyed it. It is a wonderful story of friendship and loyalty, and I would recommend reading (or listening) to anyone. It is something different from what I normally would read I think, as I like Grisham, Michael Crichton, Oprah's books of the month. . . It was a surprise for me to have liked it so much, and I think that is one of the things I like about Audible - you get to read reviews from others who have listened to the book, and I think it will help broaden my horizons.

Other than knitting I have been laying low and waiting for Spring. It is cold in Minnesota yet, with a raw wind on most days. I walked the dog a few times this month, but it is so icy (and did I mention cold) that I have a hard time motivating myself. I feed the birds and sometimes the best part of winter is being inside looking out as far as I'm concerned. I have been rewarded with at least one pair of cardinals all year this year, and I am just thrilled to watch them at the feeder.

Friday, January 23, 2009

I am Here!

I have not dropped off the face of the earth, although for awhile I felt like I had. Life goes on, and while I have not found the end of the tunnel, I am seeing some light in my days and I have resumed knitting.

I am still knitting socks, and have a wonderful pair of red socks (had I blogged about them before?) that are all done except for the closure of the toe on one sock, weaving in the ends, and giving them a good bath. The yarn is a beautiful blend of superwash merino, silk, nylon and real silver fibers from Kramer yarns. You can see it here: http://www.kraemeryarns.com/yarn/sterling.asp

There are a lot of free patterns on their website, and I used the "Lace Sterling Sock" pattern. It knit up nicely, and I will definitely knit these again. This yarn and the pattern suggestion were a selection I got as a sock club member at our LYS, Boucle in Fargo. I will get a picture once they've had a proper bath.

I'm working on a lovely top down cardigan with another pattern from Knitting Pure & Simple. It is about 90% finished. I am using Berroco Ultra Alpaca in "Redwood Mix". I have to make a decision about the finishing of the front yet. The pattern has a small border around the neck, and then ties at the top of the seed stitching panels to hold the sweater together. It is #241 here: http://www.knittingpureandsimple.com/cardi.html

My issue is that the sweater I fell in love with at the LYS did not have the ties - it was modified to have a unique button (just one) at the top of the seed stitching there, and I haven't decided yet how to proceed. The sweater looks huge in this picture, but I think I am knitting a size XL. (Really, my sister agrees - it isn't that big in person.) I like the bell sleeves and the more tailored look of the seed stitch finish to the edging. I will have to make a decision and get it finished up in the next week or so in any case, so I can feel better about starting (or finishing) other things.

For Christmas this year I got the makings of a shawl from a dear friend/cousin. She is my knitting buddy, and we had become somewhat distant over the past year due to issues in my life and her own busy life. Enclosed with the gift was a touching note indicating she had bought identical materials for herself (but in a different colorway) and we her intention was that we would spend time knitting the shawls together and reconnecting. We have met together once a week since Christmas and the shawl progress is slow but sure.

Of course Patches had to get in on the action once he saw something was going on, and even though I lifted him off the yarn repeatedly, he would not be discouraged from hanging out while I finished my picture-taking business.

Tina also gave me a cute little ornament she made, which I completely love. I took a photo of it, and the one she made for my daughter. She had done daycare for my daughter for a time, and ever since then, (even though DD is now 19 going on 20) she still gets a homemade ornament from Tina. This year, I was blessed to get one too, and think it is the cutest thing ever. It was hard to get a good picture because of the reflection of the glass on the ornament, but inside my ornament is a small handmade skein of yarn and little knitting needles she made. The saying is "In case of Knitting Emergency BREAK GLASS"