Thursday, December 24, 2009

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Christmas lights


Here are the Christmas lights that I have up in front of my house. It was so cold while I was taking the pictures my camera stopped working. We had a snow storm and got 7" on snow.

Bella mittens

These mittens were inspired by the Twlight movies. It's hard to see the cable that goes up the middle of the mittens from the picture but they are very pretty and easy to make. This is another pattern that I found on Raverly. If your a knitter and don't know about Raverly you are missing one of the best sites out there. Back to the mittens. They are made out of Malabrigo worsted weight and are soft and warm.

December socks

For the last pair of socks for the Sock of the month club 2009 I made shorty socks out of Fortissima socka yarn, Teddy color. The yarn is soft and full like chenille.They should be nice a warm this winter.
I have to say that I'm glad that I'm done with the sock of the month club. It was a great way to use up some of the massive amount of sock yarn that I have but it was hard some months to get them in. I do love all the socks and will enjoy wearing them.

Christmas stocking

Here is a special Christmas stocking that I made for a friends granddaughter's first Christmas. I made it in a soft pink and white from a pattern on Raverly. I didn't make it as long as the pattern because I wanted it to be child size compared to the adult stockings.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Monday, November 16, 2009

New blogging book


We just got in a new book at the library called Blogging for Bliss: Crafting your own online journal by Tara Frey.

Tara takes you through Why blog for bliss all the way through If Emily Post(ed). I like this book because she talkes about Blogger, TypePad, WordPress and blogHer and has a how to on each one. She also talkes about adding pictures, widgets and html's. Tara included sites that demostrate how these all come into play to make your blog more interesting to readers and yourself.

If you get a chance look it over. It has good information for all bloggers.

Monday, November 9, 2009

The Truly Terribly Horrible Sweater That Grandma Knit


We just go in a childrens book called The Truly Terribly Horrible Sweater That Grandma Knit by Debbie Macomber and Mary Lou Carney-A Blossom Street Kids Book-
It's about Cameron and a sweater his Grandma Susan knit him for his birthday. As you can tell by the title he doesn't like the sweater and tries to think of ways to get rid of it. Then several months later Grandma Susan comes for Christmas. His mom wants him to wear his sweater to train station to great her. Cameron can has a hard time beliving that he looks as handsome in the sweater as his grandmother claims. The next day she tells him a story of how she picked the colors and thought of him while making the sweater and all of a sudden the sweater looks wonderful.
It's a sweet story and has instructions in the back of the book for making the sweater.


Sunday, November 8, 2009

Strange Minnesota weather

It was a colder than normal summer. The 5th on record. It was also dry so the mosquito count was down which is a blessing. I could work in my garden without a ton of mosquito spray. August was like September should be and September was like August should be. Now it looks like Oct and Nov have switch also. October was cold and snowy, so far Nov have been warmer than usual. I took the picture of my Nov socks out in the back yarn where is was 64 and I was having a fire. Normal it should be 45 and too windy for a fire.
It will be interesting to see what the rest of the winter has in store.

November socks


Yes I got my November socks done already. They are made with Fixation a cotton elastic blend. The pattern is just the basic sock pattern although I had to go down to 48 stitches instead of 56 because of the stretch.
I started these on Nov 1st and finished on Nov 8th. The colors in the picture aren't very good. They are a green, yellow , orange and pinky/purple coloring. Now I can move on to my Christmas list knitting.

October socks

Here are my October socks finished on Halloween night. The are made with some sock yarn I purchased a few years ago Carmelia. I didn't really like working with this yarn because it split a lot. The patterns is from a wonderful designer and one of my bff's Angela Johnson called Crevasse. You can't see the patterns very good from this picture but it was a delight to work with. The lace pattern is easy to memorize and made a good take along project. Angela pattern is available on Raverly and Knitters Palette.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Ticker countdowns

I have tried to add a Ticker countdown to Thanksgiving and Christmas with a dark background so it will show up better on my blog but when I add the html code it comes out light. I've taken it out and put it back in several times but I still can't get it work the way it should. I've looked at the different html code and the one I copy does have the blk in it for the dark background.
Puzzeling. I shall have to ask my good friend Librarian DOA to take a look at it.

November 3rd

Wow! I can't believe it November already. I don't have a Chirstmas list ready yet much less worked on any Christmas projects. I have a love/hate thing going on with lists. I love knowing what needs to be done. I love checking things off the list. I hate making up the list and then sticking to it.
I think the hate part comes because I have to do staff scheduling, meeting room scheduling, review scheduling etc at work and lists just seem too much like a schedule.
So I will over come my hate part and make up a list to get ready for Thanksgiving since it's at my house and a Christmas list so I know what I need to work on.

Did you know that Christmas is only 7 weeks away. I better get working.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Vacation 2009




This was the first empty nester vacation that my husband and I have gone on. We went to the North Shore of MN. I love the North Shore with lake Superior, the rocky terrain and hiking paths through the State Parks. We hike through Gooseberry, Temperance and Cascade State Parks. The rivers are down so the waterfalls were not as big as they have been in the past but it was still beautiful. We watched the Vikings game at Sven and Olie's pizza place in Grand Marais and since I haven't gotten a passport yet we couldn't go into Canada which was just up the road. We did leave a day early since it was raining pretty hard and they were talking about snow. If I had more yarn with me I would have been happy to be snowed in for a week or two.

Sept socks


I know it's October but I haven't had time to post my September socks yet. I made them with Malabrigo sock yarn Stonechat. I have decided that Malabrigo is my now favorite yarn. I use a basic sock pattern and love the way they feel. I have to say that when January comes I will be glad that the Sock of the month challenge will be over. I love making socks but sometimes I get caught up in other projects and then have to hurry through a pair of socks to get them done for that month. I started to use up my sock yarn but I could still go for another yarn before it comes close to being gone. Pam who owns Knitters Palette in Lakeville sends emails of the new yarn that comes in and darn it all if she hasn't got in a lot of new fun sock yarn. Will it ever end! I hope not. As the weather is getting colder I need to shift to mittens and hats. Maybe mittens with sock yarn?

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Halloween




I found out from a friend how to add count down widgets. I went to ticker and they have all kinds of count down devices. I used the event option and put in Halloween and the date. It then gave me different designs to pick from for the back ground and slider.
It was fun and easy to use.

Fall

It's fall in Minnesota a time when the leaves should be changing color. Instead we had two days of snow, Saturday we had an 1 1/2 inches of snow, Monday we had 3 inches of snow, as a result the green leaves on a lot of trees fell from the weight. Will we get the changing of the colors? Who knows. I did get my Halloween decorations out on Sunday.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Twins Stitch n Pitch

Knitting friends at the Minnesota Twins Stitch n Pitch day.

New books

I picked up some new knitting books this last month to add to my already too big collection. I could start my own library.
Knitted Lace of Estonia by Nancy Bush
This is an excellent lace book for someone who is into designing their own patterns. She goes into the history of the people, land and patterns. She then has a how to section that starts off with designing your shawl. There are tips on making special bobble-like stitches, calculating stitches for the edge, joining and finishing. There is also the usual stitch definitions and patterns for beautiful scarfs and shawls. It also includes a stitch dictionary to help design your own patterns.The next books is Norwegian Handknits by Sue Flanders and Janine Kosel
I love this book. I could be because it comes close to my Norwegian roots but whatever the reason the patterns and pictures are from the Vesterheim Museum in Iowa.
It has the usual history, basic techniques but goes on to illustrate how to do steeks, fish tail braids, Kumihimo and other unusual techniques. I love the patterns and the charts are big and colorful.
The last book I picked up is a reprinting of Alice Starmore's Book of Fair Isle Knitting
The copyright is 1988 so some of the patterns are dated but the instruction materials are timeless.
As with all book it starts out with the history and origin of the patterns. It then goes on to explain the different patterns, repeats, and charting involved in making up your own designs.
She has some excellent examples on how to use colors from everyday life to come up with different color designs. There are illustrations of stranded knitting and circular knitting along with illustrartions of different stitches.
This book is good for knitters who are fimaliar with Fair Isle knitting and want to take it to the next step.






Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Skull Cap's


Here are the 3 Skull Caps that I knit up. The black /gray and black/pink are made from Cascade 220 wool the brown/tan is made from Cascade 220 washable wool.

Knitting up North



It was a beautiful Labor Day weekend. I finished Librarian DOA's skull hat and made another with some left over yarn. Here is the view I had while sitting in front of the cabin while I knit.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Fringe

Ok I know that Fringe has nothing to do with knitting but I really love the show and had to add their widget.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Christmas list

Wow it's September already. I need to start thinking about Christmas presents and a new baby is coming in October. I need to get started on making baby things. They know they are having a girl so that will make it easier.
Christmas on the other hand is trickier. We pull names out of a hat on Thanksgiving so that doesn't really give me enough time. I think that this year I will make up a few things and then depending on who's name I get I'll be ready.
I already know that I have to get going on an Dark Mark scarf for a special friend and a hat with ear flaps for my husband who has been waiting for one for the last year.
So much knitting so little time.

Skull cap


I made this skull cap for my husband he saw one on Deadliest Catch and wanted one. I used Cascade 220 wool in black and gray. I have enough left over that I can make one in gray with black skulls.

Pi Shawl


Here is a another picture of my Pi Shawl. I'm trying to work on my photography skills so please bear with me.

August socks


I finally can access the internet. Lately every time I try to post the internet shuts down.
Any way August has my PHD month and I did get two projects half done finished. Here are my August socks. I can't find the yarn tag and I don't remember the name but I love the way they turned out.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Tee shirt

I saw a tee shirt in a catalog that had:
Knitting keeps me from killing people
Some days that is very true.

Pi Shawl


I have finally finished my Pi shawl. I have ripped out more on this project than any other, run out of yarn, and had my circular needle cord pull out of the needle leaving me with 90 open stitches to try and pick back up. I used Misti Alpaca in brown and hand painted maple gray, size 8 circular needle, and lots of stitch markers. I got to use my blocking squares for the first time. I really liked the way they held in the T pins. I need to pick up another pack. I was one square short ( as you can see from the picture).
Over all I love my shawl and have yarn to make another one.

Friday, August 7, 2009

PhD or UFO

It doesn't matter what you call them. PhD (Projects half done) or UFOs (unfinished objects) there out there waiting for us. We all have them. Some are projects that we have run into a problem with, some are ones that seem to take forever to finish, and some are now so old that we didn't remember why we started it in the first place.

I'm dedicating August as PhD/UFO month and I'm trying to clean up some of the projects that are nagging at me. The first one is my EZ Pi shawl. I only started this in April so it's not that old but I need to get it done. I have challenged a friend to a race to see who can finish first. That should keep us both on track.
Then I have two pairs of socks, a triangle shawl that I have forgotten the name of, a rectangle shawl that the name escapes my mind, and afghan that I've been working on forever.
We'll see how I do.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Color work

While looking around on the Ravelry group site Great sock off of 2009 I found the finest expamle of sock colorwork that I have seen in a long time. I added the blog site to my list. I don't know much about her other than she is from the Norway and she also quilts.
If you are looking to be inspired try her blog site http://hjemmeute.blogspot.com/.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

No July socks

Since I didn't get any socks finished in July for sock of the month club (see Socks, Socks, Socks) I thought I would do a sock book review. I'm afraid to admit how many sock books that I own and vowed to not buy anymore when Wendy Johnson came out with Socks From The Toe UP.
I have other toe up books but I have only successfully made one pair (out of many) toe up socks. I don't like the short row heal. Well Wendy must have been reading my mind and put 3 different kind of heals and toes in her new book. I first checked it out at the Library, telling myself that this would keep me from buying it. Well after taking it home and reading through it I decided that I had to have it. I like the different styles and illustrations.
My review is if unlike me you don't get almost every sock book out there my two favorites are: Wendy's Socks From The Toe Up and Sensational Knitted Socks by Charlene Schurch.

P.S. I did two pairs of sock in Feb and March so I'm still on track with a sock a month. The problem is I have enough sock yarn to go for another year or two.

Socks Socks Socks

I started a pair of Fair Isle red white and green socks for my Christmas in July theme. The first time I ripped them out they were way too small. Check gauge and try again. The second time they fit up until I started working on the foot(cuff down). They didn't fit over my heal. I checked my gauge again changed needle size and I'm now trying them for the 3rd time.
Real Fair Isle is tricky. Unlike yarn that is dyed to look like Fair Isle you are working with 3 different balls of yarn(or how ever many different colors you are working with). You have to have the gauge almost a little bigger than you want so that it doesn't end up too tight. You also have to make sure that the strands in the back are not pulled too tight. They need room to float and stretch so the item you are making is not too small. If the stands are too loose you also run into problems.
I have made other Fair Isle items like purses,hat and mittens without much trouble. I love working with different colors and patterns.
I will stick with the Christmas socks and I will win out in the end or find someone with smaller feet.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Quantuim of Wallace



I know he's not knitting but it does combine my love of Wallace and 007 movies.

Shaun the sheep dance

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Photos

I can see by some of my pictures that I need to take a class on photography. I hate it when some of the colors are washed out or I can't get a clear picture of the pattern. Hang in there with me I will keep trying to get better pictures.

Market bags


There are several patterns for Market bags. Just search the internet knitting sites or check on Ravelry to see what other people have made.
I purchased a kit from Knit Picks. Their Montavilla Market Bag is a kit that comes with the yarn you need to make two bags and instructions. The bag is a color work of subtle colors that look great together. I'm not sure I have enough yarn left over for another one but I could be wrong. Yarn balls can be deciving. It was fun to make and I didn't have a lot of ends to weave in. The knit picks yarn is called Simply Cotton Worsted and is about the same a Lion Brand Kitchen cotton or Sugar and Creams cotton.
I want to try some different colors to jazz it up a bit. I love bright colors.

For blocking your finished items


I have a friend who wanted my to put a picture of the foam blocks that I purchased at Menards for blocking. Here it is. They fit together and can be put on any surface. I have a small house so I could use them in my back yard on nice day or in the garage for big projects. I just have to be sure to tell my husband so he doesn't drive the car over my knitting project.

June socks


For June I made Monkey socks by Cookie A. The pattern can be found on www.knitty.com. The yarn I used was Fortissima Mit Bamboo in fall colors. They were fun to make.

Pictures


Here is a picture of my May socks. These were made with Fortissima Socka yarn made in Italy. The color is chocolate brown Farbe 1082 Partie 44200. The pattern is from Sensational Knitted Socks Corded Rib.

Monday, June 8, 2009

May socks

Yes I did finish a pair of socks in May I just haven't gotten around to uploading the picture yet. They are a chocolate brown with a corded ribbing pattern.
I'm still working on my Pi Shawl after many rip outs and the cable cord breaking free of the needle leaving 90 stitches loose to be picked up again, I think that I'm finally getting there.

I started on some Monkey socks for June and sadly I have to go back to work on Monday. I will have to do some major knitting to get things done before then.
I did find at Menard's some soft flooring like Knit Picks offers for blocking so when my shawl is ready I'll be all set.

So far on sock of the month plan I have been able to keep up and some months even make two pairs. My sock yarn stash is shrinking but for it to be truly under control I will have to make two pairs of socks a month for the rest of they year. Ho well that's the live of a knitter.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Basic shawl


Here is a picture of a basic shawl I made for work. I have an air duct right above my desk and when I do get a chance to sit at my desk it gets cold. It's made out of Diakeito Japanese yarn and is very soft. I love the colorway.54% mohair, 38% wool and 8% nylon.

My knitting buddy


Here is a picture of George my constant companion and knitting buddy.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Shepards Harvest

It looks like I won't make it to Shepard's Harvest this year. Boo Hoo. I still can't walk much on my foot so it's impossible for me to go. I'll miss the fresh from the kettle kettle-corn and the vender's booths.
Oh well, it is a way to save money. I will have to look forward to next year.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Ugly socks

I finished the ugliest socks yesterday. I don't know what I was thinking when I picked out the color way or yarn content. They are mustard yellow, brown, black and white and ended coming out as a kind of camouflage coloring. Not my best decision but that make 3 pairs of socks in one month.

I started a Pi Shawl by Elizabeth Zimmerman. Last night was my first class and I really enjoyed it. The colors I'm using are brown and a variegated brown,green blend (much better than the yellow,brown camo). I hope to post pictures of the shawl soon so you can see the color combos.
My foot is feeling better so now I feel like getting into some knitting projects. I'll see how many I can get done in the next 8 weeks that I'm off work.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

No more sock wearing for awhile- foot surgery

Just because I can't wear socks for awhile doesn't mean that I won't keep making a sock a month. With 6 weeks off I can make a good dent in my stash. Laying around with my foot up is pretty boring thanks goodness I have knitting.