Monday, November 16, 2009

Little Entrelac Bag

When I looked through the new Interweave's Holiday Gifts magazine and saw Susan Lawrence's Little Entrelac Bags pattern I knew I was making it as soon as I got home.
little entrelac bag
It was a fun quick project with Noro Kureyon. The pattern called for a twisted cord, I made a square cord on a Lucet with several strands of thread and pearl cotton. The hardest part has been finding a button for the drawstring.

I have other finished objects but they all need a little something before I take pictures and blog about them.

Ysolda Teague has some great patterns and I'm drawn to her patterns on Ravelry. There's one through that always makes me smile and remember some mystery books I've read. Have you heard of the Aunt Dimity books by Nancy Atherton? The main character has a knit bunny from her childhood that was made for her by Aunt Dimity who lived in England. Well, Ysolda has a knit bunny pattern called Sophie that is exactly the bunny I envisioned while reading. It makes me smile every time I come across this pattern.
(This just proves that you can play "7 Degrees to Knitting" with anything.)

The sun is so low in the south now that it comes further into the house than any other time of the year. The cats are loving it! They follow the sun around the living room during the day. Bright sunlight, the best way to photograph our Sam.

Old man Ty really loves the heat.

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Lambtown 2009

Last month the Photographer and I headed up state to attend Lambtown in Dixon, California, west of Sacramento.

There was Sheep Judging

Strolling Alpacas
strolling alpaca 2

Penned sheep ready for dog herding trials
sheep penned for dog herding

The Fiber Show
Lambtown fiber show
The seated woman in blue is Shari McKelvy of Morro Fleece Works.

The view from the back of the building
Lambtown 2009 Fiber Hall

A rare breed of sheep (sorry I've forgotten the breed name) whose coat was like bristles. The man said there was no known use for the fiber; the Photographer throught it would be perfect for bristle paint brushes.
stiff bristle coated sheep 2
That coat is not soft at all, felt more like a hair brush!
stiff bristle coated sheep

Angora Goat - look at that FACE!! (Is that really an Angora or Mohair Goat?)
Angora Goat

Alpaca Show

I found three bags of Alpaca fleece on display near the pens. There was the most gorgeous black fleece that I coveted the moment I saw it. I went around asking who owned it until I found her; the fleece was brought for display but she was happy to sell it to me. (I walked it right over to Morro Fleece Works and saved the cost of shipping) The beautiful, super-soft fiber was from Midnight, the black boy in the center below. (That's him from the rear in the above photo)

And here I am having a wonderful stroll, third time around, in the Fiber Show.
Lambtown booth

There was a wonderful Sheep to Shawl going on that I wish I had pictures of. Looked like there were eight teams - that's the largest S2S I've ever seen. It was fun to look at all the wheels, drum carders and looms.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Charity Knitting Report

I usually have many projects going at once but for some reason four Charity Projects seem to have gotten finished one after another.

The first were the Camo Hats for the Troops
Camo Hats for Troops
These Hats are being collected at Two Sister and Ewe. Two Customers, one in the Military herself and the other a Military Wife, are sending these hats to Troops in Iraq. The Shop stocked Camouflage acrylic yarn just for this project. I got two hats out of one ball of this worsted weight yarn.

The second project or projects were my Red Scarf Project donations this year. Two Sisters has a collection basket for this Orphan Foundation of America project. They'll mail them all in the beginning of December. I hope we have Red Scarves everywhere. (Several years ago The Shop was the collection point for Pink Scarves that were going to be sold at the Breast Cancer Walk with all the money going to the Susan Komen Fund. I never saw so much Pink in one place in my life!)

Reversible Herringbone Rib Scarf
My first scarf is the Li's Reversible Herringbone Scarf. This is a very nice pattern - write to Li if you'd like her free pattern.
Pattern close-up.
Reversible Herringbone Rib Scarf close-up

Cashmere Scarf Like Scarf
My second Red Scarf is made from the Pattern "Men's Cashmere Scarf" in Last-Minute Knitted Gifts. Of course, I didn't use cashmere yarn both of these scarves are made with Marble Yarn from James G. Brett.(I was several rows into this pattern when I realized it is nearly identical to Yarn Harlot's Handspun Scarf pattern that I finished just a few weeks ago. I wonder if both authors are aware of how similar their patterns are?)

I recently had a Birthday lunch with my Sister and her daughters and grandchildren and my daughters (neither have children, not for lack of my encouragement!) Here is a photo of my great-nephew Joey (2.5 years)
and my newest great-niece Lily

Friday, August 21, 2009

A Few Finished Things

My handspun scarf has been finished for awhile but I finally got around to blocking it. Pattern is the Yarn Harlots One Row Handspun Scarf.
Ravelry Link
handspun ribbed scarf

This picture has the truest colors.
2handspun scarf

and a full length shot
Handspun ribbed scarf 2

The second finished object is a Flame Stitch Shawl made from a new 75% Bamboo fingering weight yarn from SRK called "On Your Toes." This is a very soft yarn; fabulous to knit. The stitch pattern was given to me by SDAHT on Ravelry. I designed this scarf not realizing that it was the same stitch pattern I'd used for my Evelyn Clark's Shetland Triangle until I'd knit a full pattern repeat.

flame stitch shawl

the scalloped edge (this photo shows the best stitch definition)
flame stitch shawl edge

and the backlit shot
Flame Stitch Scarf back light

Lastly, Charity Knitting: I've been knitting caps for a friend's church that has a few people going to Tibet. I don't know why they're going but they wanted to take something for the children but they are only allowed to take one carry-on bag. It was decided that knit hats could be tucked into any empty spots in their luggage. I've knit two hats for them to take.
charity hat

And the Red Scarf Project. This is my second year knitting these red scarves. Last year, who knows why, my scarves were crocheted. This year I'm back to knitting scarves using Marble Yarn
Marble Yarn

I'm making Li's Reversible Herringbone Rib Scarf. (Leave a comment on her blog asking for this free pattern)
Reversible Herringbone Rib Scarf 2

This is a great pattern that is interesting to knit but not so difficult that you can't watch TV.

And I stumbled over a display of Hatch Peppers while in our local Bristol Farms. I've always wanted to go the the Hatch Chili Festival this is as close as I've ever gotten.
Hatch Peppers

Thursday, August 06, 2009

Sample Knitting

One of the Perks of working in a Yarn Shop is that you are handed yarn and get to knit things that you might never knit for yourself. I was handed a One Pound Bag of Pagewood Farm's Sock Bites and told to knit samples. Here's what the nearly 1200 yards of fingering weight yarn looks like out of the bag.
Pagewood Farm Sock Bites
What can you make with a bag of sock leftovers???
Of course, my first was a bit of Entrelac.
Entrelac Sample

Several sizes of Mitered Squares was my next thought.
Mitered Squares Sample
Sorry about the strings and unblocked look.

Many people have been making Barn Raising Squares with their sock left overs which means Sock Bites would be perfect for this project.
Barn Raising Sample
There are several varieties of sock yarn from PageWood Farm so some squares lay flatter than others.

My most recent idea was the Chevron Scarf from Last Minute Knitted Gifts.
Chevron Scarf Sample

I still have lots of yarn left.
Sock Bites left overs
I'd love some other sample project suggestions.

Mean while out in the garden...

The Dill has gone to seed. Doesn't it remind you of lace?
Dill Lace
(or is that just me with knitting on the brain??)

I'm drawing a blank on the name of this plant at the moment. Anyone??

Looking Southwest through the Jacaranda in the front.
Good thing this is a tight shot otherwise you'd see all the dead lawn! The water restrictions here are tough; we're only watering the large trees in the landscape.

One of the Cycads in the backyard. I love the color and texture in this photo.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Wildlife in the City

OK - knitting stuff first...

Using my hand-dyed Superwash BFL from Yarn2Dye4 I made Evelyn Clark's Shetland Triangle from Wrap Style. Shetland Triangle
I did 11 repeats, 3 more than the pattern called for. The pattern was easy to memorize and a very quick knit. Shetland Triangle closeup Bind off loosely is an understatement. I knit this with a size 6 needle and bound off with a size 10 which still wasn't loose enough; the bind-off was too tight to get the edging points as shown in the book. Shetland Triangle edge detail
Other than that I'm very happy with how it turned out.

Before blocking it looked more like I was knitting an egg crate than lace.
Shetland Triangle pre-blocking

For living in the city we have our fair share of wildlife in the backyard. There are lizards everywhere eating every bug they can find. I had very few snails or aphids this past Spring and very little catterpiller damage on any of my greens. Yesterday while going in the back door I noticed a baby right near the back door at eye level. (for size reference the medallion is the size of a dinner plate)
baby lizard perspective

He was such a perfect minature.
baby lizard
Can you believe he just stayed there through his photo session with The Photographer never moving except for a slow, infrequent blink. Did you see those TOES!!!

And don't get me started on the blasted squirrel!!! I haven't gotten to a ripe tomato ahead of him. squirrel damage
I feeling like I'm living in a Chip and Dale Cartoon. I've started cutting tomato clusters the second I see any warming in their color.
I may not get the whole "vine-ripened taste" but I'll have some of my own tomatoes! Blasted *#@%^* Squirrels!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Nerd Tendencies - your time has come!

Somehow during the Michael Jackson news blitz over the past month this gem went un-noticed. My daughter called this speech by John Hodgman at the Radio & TV Correspondents dinner to my attention. If you have any Nerd tendencies you'll really enjoy this speech.

Hope you enjoy it as much as I (a true SciFi loving geek) did.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Still Around, Still Knitting

Yes, I'm still alive... and feeling wonderful! Dr. changed my thyroid level and some supplements and I'm feeling so full of energy that it's hard to sit still long enough to compose a blog entry. I've finished a few things, the pictures are still in my camera and will make it here eventually.

I've also been running an evening Summer Knitting Program at a local Library which has been a lot of fun. Mostly new or new-ish knitters so lots of problem solving on my part.

Personally, I've several lace projects going and a couple of socks.

My secret Knitty blue project was a dismal failure. I was making, for The Photographer, Retrofit which is a somewhat slim fitting sweater. I made it from measurements I took a year ago since I wanted it to be a Father's Day surprise. His shoulders didn't fit by two sizes and around chest measurement needed to be the next size up. (The smaller sizes really are fitted.) Simply a disaster - the whole way round! The yarn is now back in hanks; it really didn't want to be that sweater.

Next time I'll have pictures, promise.

Annie says, Hey.
Annie Salute

Monday, June 08, 2009

Sorry, I'm Boring lately!

I'm too boring for Blogging. Lately, nothing I'm knitting is worth it. Two out of three projects look the same as the last time they were photographed. Ink Spot, started the second side which looks the same as the first. Milkweed project is about three quarters done but looks like unblocked lace does. The un-named Knitty project, I'm on "that island" knitters dread.

I did knit up a sample for the shop in an Organic Cotton.
diagonal dishcloth

This is the eloomanator Diagonal Knit Dishcloth.
and a close-up.
diagonal closeup
It was a quick knit and fun to watch the pattern emerge.

And I knit up some of my homespun,
all spun up handspun
This if from All Spun Up, sorry I can't find the colorway name. Lovely fiber!

And used it to start Yarn Harlot's One Row Handspun Scarf Pattern
handspun scarf
This scarf is done now but needs to be blocked to open it up. Again a quick and enjoyable project. And a great pattern to display long color runs.

I dyed some BFL superwash fingering weight yarn a light Turquoise.
kettled dyed BFL superwash
It was kettle dyed and came out a very faint semi-solid. It's destined to be Evelyn Clark's Shetland Triangle.

That's it for my knitting. The garden has had some spectacular spring blooms.
Graham Thomas Climbing Rose
The Graham Thomas Climbing Rose was severely cut back this year - guess it like it because it's out done itself with roses!

The Asiatic Lillies have kept blooming through rain or shine.
Red Lilly in the rain
Asiatic Lilly in the rain

And the Jacarandas in the neighborhood have bloomed in all their glory.
Jacaranda in Bloom
(Yes, they're beautiful trees but you want to view them at someone elses house. Messy and sticky debris!)

The Photographer and I went to the Ocean Beach Farmer's Market a couple weeks ago. O.B. never got the message that the Summer of Love is over.

Annie say, "Hey."