Thursday, November 08, 2007

"Take me back.......

Josephine, to that cold and dark December..." Here it is, a finished Josephine. The pattern came from Interweave Knits Summer 2007. I substituted GGH Scarlett for the Karabella yarn they recommended, and was able to get gauge by going from a US size 5 to a US size 3 (!). No problem with drape, however, and I must say I love how this turned out. Too bad I made a Summer top as we are heading into Winter. But I thoroughly enjoyed this knit. The only modification I made was adding onto the cap sleeves; I did two extra rows before starting the short rows, then a total of four extra short rows.
Now on to Christmas gift knitting: I also finished the Elsebeth Lavold vest I was doing for my Dad, I'll post a photo asap. Unfortunately it means that now I'll be heading into scarf-land, which I confess that I loathe. What is it about making a long rectangle that makes my eyes cross? Even when there is a fun stitch pattern, I get to about six inches and then it feels like an unending marathon. Yet I think it still beats second-sock syndrome............

Friday, October 05, 2007

Josephine Top

So, while I ponder the blue vest, of course it would be unthinkable to let my needles be idle. Here's what I've got cooking next:
It's the beginning of the Josephine Top from IK Summer 2007. Yup, it's no longer Summer. Seems like my knitting goes like that. But I've been eyeing this one for a while, so there. Here's a close up of the stitch pattern. Unblocked, of course. I'm doing this in GGH Scarlett, a sheen-y mercerised cotton. It's very, well, mercerised cotton-like. That is to say, the drape is lovely, the sheen pretty, but the knitting itself? Well....let's just say that it's cotton, you know? Not springy or forgiving, and very splitty, which is driving me bonkers. Nevertheless, I love how it's looking knitted up, so on I go!

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

New goods...

I thought I'd spare you the pictures of navy blue vest pieces blocking. At least the pieces are done; once they're dry, I'll assemble them, then (yuck) the button band needs to be knit on. I say "yuck" because I hate the process of figuring out button holes. Anyone have any great ideas about this? I am sure for the mathematically minded, this process is easy, or at least fun in some sort of way?

Instead, I'm including a picture of my latest inspiration, Veronik Avery's "Knitting Classic Style". Did I mention that I am a horrible book junkie? It mean, it's bad. So of course, I ordered this hot off the press. There are a few interesting designs in here that I could be inspired to make, like the knitted "Military Jacket", and the "Layered Skater's Top" done in kid silk haze.

Sunday, September 23, 2007


So, here are the first 3 and 1/4 pieces of my Dad's vest. See the weird little tailey thingey at the very top of the front piece? That's an extra bit of cabling that will eventually wrap around the back neck. I've started on the second front, hoping to burn through this. You know, this knit hasn't been bad or anything, I mean, the Classic Al has been fine to work with, and the gauge is big enough to cook along....hmmmm.......why am I qualifying? It's just that, apparently, knitting a plain dark blue man's vest isn't inspiring me. Yes, it's for my dad. Yes, it's the first man's garment I've done. Yes, it has a lovely motive sprinkled throughout....OK, go ahead, call me selfish. I want color. I want something.....stylish. I want....something for me?! Maybe I just want to get back to working on my enormous queue of knitting projects. And, as a tease, I've received a new book in the mail......

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Back to School

It's back to school time, if ya'll haven't noticed. At my house, this means it's been kind of a crazy, emotional week. For me, mind you. My "oldest" has just started first grade. First time going to a "big school", first time on a "big bus", first time away from home ALL day. How is it going? So far so good. I guess. I miss her, you know? Of course, I have my "youngest" at home with me still. He started preschool yesterday. First time away from home AT ALL. He did fantastic, of course. Me? Well, it seems quiet, yet busier, if that's possible. This whole getting to the bus on time, making lunches everyday, planning for homework, extra-curricular activies, etc. etc.

I feel like I've entered the school-age-kid-mommy club. Not sure how I feel about it. Of course, I had my eyebrows waxed yesterday without it being an act of Congress to organize a babysitter for a loust 15 minute treatment. So there. The dawn of a new age.

Knitting?? Duh, hopefully I'll be able to squeeze time in for that again soon......

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Next Up

I have never knit anything for a man. My husband claims that sweaters are "too hot". Thank goodness, because he is 6'3", 220 lbs. I don't really want to knit anything that size, so it alleviates any knitting guilt. But Christmas is coming, and I thought it might be nice to make my dear old dad something. So, here it is, the beginning of a vest. The pattern comes from Elsebeth Levold, viking knits book 9. I'm doing it in her Classic Al reather than pure cashmere, for obvious reasons. It seems to be moving right along and again: no sleeves~!! The actual color is midnight blue. If I can pump this thing out, I can start diving into my loooong list of things I am DYING to start. Stay focused, stay focused.....

Monday, August 27, 2007

FO alert

Okay, drumroll please....I have two finished objects to show off.

OK, on the top is the first one. I finished this at the end of Spring, but am just now showing it off. This is Femme Fatale from Alchemy Yarns. I did it in Alchemy Haiku and edged it with their Bamboo yarn. I LOVE this sweater. It is light as air, but warm, and just flows. And the colors are divine. The only mods I made were shortening the total lenght by a couple of inches, and the length of the sleeves by...wait for it...3.5 inches!!! Mohair, as you all may or may not know, is notorious for stretching. So I way shortened the sleeves so that I didn't look like a gorilla after wearing it once or twice. Otherwise, I loved this knit. it was also my first time using Bryspun needles, which were great with the thin mohair/silk blend.

Next is the sort of "Fair Isle" number I've been working on from that Knit 2 Together book by Tracey Ullmann and Mel Clark. The photo is crap, I see now, my apologies for the Hub's picture taking. But hopefully you get the gist....don't know if I'll actually wear this thing or not, but it was a fun project. I had to block the you know what out of it, and it seems to have settled down...

Tuesday, August 14, 2007


Look what I got in the mail yesterday! It's Issue One of Teva Durham's Loop-d-loop collection, which I ordered from I will confess that in the past I had a little trouble with the whole loop-d-loop concept. Okay, I loved the designs from a purely creative and interesting standpoint. But I didn't fine them to be wearable for me. (Me being your basic suburban housewife......) BUT.....I love almost every single thing in this leaflet!! Here are two of my favorites, but there are a couple more that I would make besides these. Plus, imagine my thrilled suprised when I discovered that the kpixie girls sent me an autographed copy. Yay!

Monday, August 13, 2007

You May Be Right......

I might be crazy. So here is the project I'm working on:

It is the "Fair Isle" vest from Knit 2 Together by Tracey Ullman and Mel Clark. I had been thinking about doing some stranded colorwork, and I loved the bright retro colors in this design. HOWEVER....notice it is not knit in the round. So, my friends, there is the whole purling while stranding thing. Also, in a few rows they had the audacity to have three colors. Yikes. As if my newbie colorwork attempt isn't ripply and uneven enough! After trying it a couple of time, I have decided to omit the third color and I'll Swiss darn it in later. The good news: it's a vest, so no damn sleeves. Seems like it is the season of the vest....Check out Cathi's sexy and fabulous number!!

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Don't you love Fall?

If you live in the Pacific Northwest, I hope so, because apparently Summer has ended early. We've had gray, drab moist weather for several days now. I could continue to whine, because I have two youngish children and we are all getting CABIN FEVER..................

However, it certainly does get you in the Fall wardrobe mood. How lucky that all the knitting mags are arriving!! It feels like Christmas to me. I am a book and magazine junkie, so when the stuff starts arriving in my mailbox, I get very very happy.

So, I saw the new Rowan yesterday. IMHO, it is the best one I've seen in a while, certainly better than the last two. It is beautiful, has lots of inspiration as well as actual items I would want to make.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Seeing Double

Do these designs look familiar to you? The one on the bottom is from Rebecca No. 29, which came for Winter 2005, I believe. On the top left you'll find a design from the brand new IK for Fall 2007, and on the top right is a design from the new Fall 2007 Vogue Knitting.

Fascinating, no? Actually, I really like the one from Vogue. It looks streamlined, and the pattern seems like it would be okay to follow. When the first one came out in Rebecca, I liked it as well, except it has a batwing silhouette which I don't think would be flattering on everyone. Well, okay, me. The IK version looks a little bulky.

So does this confirm that Europe is at least two years ahead of us in fashion?

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Le Bon Fifi

After a long hiatus, I am back to my blog! Fortunately, the needles haven't been as silent as my keyboard.

First up, the new "Fifi". I had some Calmer languishing in the stash, and came across this pattern at a LYS. Check out the French Girl website, they have some really creative things. Anyway, here she is: I added about 2 inches to the length, to hide the mid-section pudge and it is still fairly cropped. I knit the size small, because they suggest going smaller for "negative ease"....which really means nice and form-fitting, if you like that sort of thing. (Which sometimes I do, sometimes I don't....) The Hub was impressed with how it accentuated my assets.....
This was my second try at knitting something from the top down, the first being Rusted Root, which I'll show off another day. Whaddya think? The best part is that I still have 5 -6 balls of Calmer left~! So much for stash-busting.....

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Life begins at 40...but blogging stops??

It's not that I haven't finished anything.....quite the opposite. I have a lovely lace sweater to show, and socks, and tons of yarn, and a fab new book......but my blogging energy has been nil. Partially due to technical camera difficulties, but still. I think I am bogged, blogged down?

OK, so I have a little journaling to do. It can be done!! More tomorrow.....

Monday, March 12, 2007

The Big One

I turned 40 yesterday. 4-0. Check out knit and tonic for her post today, it pretty much sums up how I feel about the whole aging thing.

I don't feel a day over, say, 28. But isn't that what every forty-something says? The number just sounds so, so, big. As in, "a 40 year old Kent woman is missing tonight", or "the 40 year old mother of two was on her way to soccer practice when she disappeared...". I can't wrap my head around that number applying to ME. It's all very surreal.

One thing for sure, time marches on. No stopping it. Might as well enjoy the ride.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Anatomy and Physiology....

What is it about pinning out a sleeve for blocking that always reminds me of anatomy and physiology, where we had to pin out the edges of, say, a frog. Or worse. Really; the way you carefully uncurl the edges, then pin them to a mat...thankfully, no smell of formaldehyde. Anyway, here is the first sleeve, pinned and ready.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007


In between all the yarn-overs and ssk's required in my little lace lattice number I've been working on these. One bright beauty done, one to go!

Friday, February 23, 2007

Project Update

Here is a little update of project lacey lattice. One back and two fronts done! Please don't look for mistakes, yup, they are there, and they are staying. So there. Now on to the sleeves.....I just have to close my eyes and not think about the implications of sleeves, just do them.

I have the sweater pieces laid out on my "blocking rug". I got this idea ages ago from Bonne Marie and it has worked great for me. Love that I can roll it up when I'm done!

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Bonehead moment

Aargh. So I am merrily working away on the second front of the Lacey lattice cardi. And watching an old BBC video (Inspector Morse...I'm a sucker for those old BBC mystery movies.) I get to the armhole decreases and think to myself "wow, I am really cranking, here. Almost done with the second front... *chortle chortle*". My next thought is "hmmm, but something isn't, well, quite right. Maybe I should count...." Egads. While I'm merrily doing the waist increases, I glibly forgot to do the neckline decreases. And there are a lot of them. Every 4 rows 16 times, to be exact. (How did I not notice that I had, oh, about 20 extra stitches on my needle? And I was drinking tea instead of wine. In fact, maybe that was part of the problem.) Did I mention that the lacey lattice design is a 12 row repeat? 6 inches of ripping, my friends. 6 inches. Not only that, but don't you love trying to put all the stitches of a lace pattern back on the needle, without dropping yarn-overs, etc.

Friday, February 16, 2007

Eye candy Friday

Ooh la la, lookie what I got for an early birthday gift. That's Alchemy Haiku plus one hand of their bamboo yarn......

I know, I should be showing off my latest progress on my Lacey lattice cardi, but I figured it could wait.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Portable knitting

As I plug away at the lacey lattice cardigan, I still need to have something portable to work on. I saw this BRIGHT yarn and had to have it. It's Lorna's Laces Shepherd sport, color 630 Bittersweet. My 6 y.o. daughter fell in love with the pink, purple and tangerine color combo. Actually, I also fell in love with the color combo. I was thinking how it would brighten up my humdrum-mommy jeans and clogs. So, I merrily cast on 56 stitches, the normal number if I'm working top down socks in sport weight yarn. I thought I would do a feather and fan design on the leg, a'la Wendy. So far, so good, very cute. Guess what? The leg is waaaay to small for me. Lucky 6 y.o. girl will get socks after all!!! That'll teach me to be so selfish....

Friday, February 02, 2007

Lacey lattice

Here is the project that I'm using the Aurora 8 for, from Vittadini Spring 2005. So far so good, except I h*te doing increases while trying to stay in pattern...apparently my shriveled brain can't handle that kind of concentration at 10pm each night after the last child has finally gone to bed! Fortunately, any small "imperfections" are pretty well hidden in the dark chocolately brown color I am using. That is my 3 y.o. son helping me stretch it out to measure!

Monday, January 29, 2007

Good things come in....the mail

Lookie what came in the mail a few days ago. Mmmmm, Karabella Aurora 8 from kpixie! Slated for a lacy cardi from Adrienne Vittadini, Spring 2005. I'll be starting this right away!

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Of socks and Magazines...

Here they are, in all their sockiness. Plain vanilla cuff-down pattern, but the yarn makes them cute. AND (drum-roll please......), I can officially allow myself to start my Adrienne Vittadini lace cardi.
In other news, I picked up the new Rebecca magazine this week. Actually, my mom picked it up for me, bless her. But I must say, if I had seen it first, I probably wouldn't have purchased it. (OK, that is a big fat lie, because I am sick in the head and feel I have to purchase almost every new cool knitting publication, even if I am disappointed with the contents....). Which, by the way, I am. Disappointed, that is. There was maybe one design in the whole issue that turned my crank, a pullover with a cool stitch made out of GGH's new yarn called Tara. Otherwise, I looked through and thought "ugh, nothing." Rats.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

When in doubt......

When in doubt about what to knit next, I make socks. OK, I went through a period of total sock-burnout. I made a toe-up sock out of light denim blue on size 1 needles, and then never had the chutzpah to make the second. Total second-sock-itis. But here I am, between projects, with a sock stash that is, well, embarassing, so I am making socks. I prefer the hourglass heel and toe, toe-up version as far as appearance and wearability. HOWEVER.....I find that I have to use my brain too much for this method, so with this pair I am doing the old top-down, heel flap version. The yard is some hand-dye yarn I picked up at my LYS, Renaissance Yarns. I am really liking this colorway, which has brown, dark brown, rust and some magenta thrown in. When this is done, I am on to, hold your breath now, an Adrienne Vittadini lace sweater. More to come on this.....

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

First FO of 2007!

Yay, Pinkie is finished! I actually really like how it turned out...perfect to wear as a workhorse in this SNOWY, ICY weather we are having in the PNW! The only changes I made were to make it one inch longer than the pattern said, and I had to decrease the number of stitches picked up around the neck by, wow, ten stitches. The first time I picked up the number the pattern asked for and it looked like a ridiculous stand-up boatneck thing. So I ripped it and tried again, and I think the results are good. Hooray, on to something new! But what? Hmmm, so many options....

Sunday, January 07, 2007


Do you name your sweaters? I don't, as a rule. I often wish I could be that madly creative person that comes up with witty, clever names for their work. Generally, I refer to them as "that one pink sweater from Interweave know the one?" Anyway, here is the progress on that particular sweater from Interweave Knits , Spring 2006.

Out with the old.....

Well, the first official project of 2007 has been officially scrapped. I was making a sweater with unusual knit it in one huge piece, then the fronts are crossed and invisibly seamed to the shoulders. This unsual construction is what kept me going...and going...and going....on what seemed liked miles of endless stockinette. (I tolerated it by doing lots of car knitting while on a Wintery family vaca...) Long story short, once I completed the sleeves, I found that they were WAY....TOO...SMALL. When I say small, I mean cut off the circulation to your wrists and forearms too small. I double-checked my guage (YES, I did do a swatch to start off with...) Looks like my already tight knitting tightened up some more. By a lot, as evidenced by said sleeves. So, here's the dilemma: do I frog and start again?? Can i just tell you, the thought of re-knitting all that stockinette makes me feel rather queasy. Currently, the project is stuffed in the bottom of a bag, out of sight.. What would you do?