Saturday, January 12, 2008

Dashing and Learning New Things!

I had my first finished object of 2008 just a few days into the year: a pair of Dashing made of Cascade Venezia. Venezia is 70% Merino Wool and 30% Silk, and I loved working with it. The Dashing pattern was fun to work too and I think it took me 4 or 5 days to complete the mitts. I have to confess that using the Venezia was not my idea - Tina had used it for her mitts, and when I tried them on, they felt heavenly! (Click to embiggen pictures.) I need to learn to crop my photos before coming to my blog. So sorry. Also, as a rightie with a gimpy left hand, the gloved hand photo was a challenge with this morning. Talk about camera shake! ; )

A few weeks ago when I had been in the LYS I had seen a sample of this adorable baby sweater from the Mission Falls Wee Knits Too pattern book displayed in the store. The store was offering a class on the sweater, and I know the instructor for the class is fabulous. I pondered on this little knit for a week or two, as I don't really have a baby in mind to warrant the kind of investment I'd be making, but I sure wanted to make that sweater and take the class. I've never knit anything with full garment construction. I've only done top down, and although I've dabbled a bit with fair isle in a hat, I've not done intarsia. Anyway, you know the rest of the story. First class was Tuesday night, and we were to knit up to where the heart begins in the middle of the sweater back. The instructor said it was OK to knit ahead in other areas, so I made one sleeve and will probably get the other one done before our next class this coming Tuesday. I do like the instructor very much and can see that the investment in class will be well worth my money. The little tips and tricks you learn from an experienced knitter are invaluable. I am using Mission Falls 1824 Superwash Merino Wool. It will be a nice little sweater. I may have to buy myself a doll to dress up periodically. ; )

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Knitting Gifts!

I have been blessed with a cousin who has also become a best friend over the past several years, as we shared an obsession with rubber stamping at first, and now with knitting. She lives just a block or so from me, and we get together frequently over coffee to discuss our hobby and families, jobs and life. She is a great friend, and one of the highlights of my holiday is always our gift exchange, because I know that she will gift me with things that my family doesn't - when I was stamping it was stamping goodies, and now that we are both knitting, we exchange knitting gifts. This year was no different! Look at the fabulous stitch markers she made! She says she made these from things in her stamping stash. She is just about the most creative person I
know! Aren't they adorable?

I also received this wonderful Cherry Tree Hill sock yarn in the Indian Summer colorway. (Click the photos to enlarge it . The color is amazing.) She and her husband had gone to Duluth on an anniversary trip and she told me that he actually picked this out for me and it is his contribution to my gift this year. Isn't that sweet? Her husband is such a thoughtful man, I continue to be astounded. Can you believe he will go to her place of work and move her car up by her building in the evening so she doesn't have to clear all the snow and walk in the cold? This was his own idea, and he just started doing it one day unannounced. Unbelievable! Anyway, the color is wonderful, and I'll be anxious to knit it up.

She also put together (in the white box) an Angel Kit for me. The angel is an ornament made of mohair and roving and oddments. She made the head (multi-talented) out of polymer clay and included everything I need, including the pattern, to make myself an ornament. Our local fiber guild had made these ornaments and although I had wanted to participate, I didn't make it, and so it was such a fun thing to find this in my gift from her this year. In this picture you also see the sock blockers from Fiber Trends. I don't have sock blockers yet, and really had been wanting a pair in the worst way, so this was also a delight to find in my gift assortment.

And there was more! Some mohair in black, the Fiber Trends Hedgehog pattern, a knitting journal to keep track of my projects with photos and yarn labels, and details. And if all of this was not enough, it was all in a beautiful sage green collapsible knitting tote that has a plum lining and wooden handles. The tote is the perfect colors for my living room, and I love it. I will use and enjoy everything, and was so excited to receive it.