Tuesday, December 20, 2005

As promise a while back, here's the hat I've been working on, EZ inspired, with a slight push from Susan's hat project. I started at the top, the edge is finished with an I-cord bind-off and then I picked up stitches and did a K2P2 finish.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Hat Day

I followed Susan's instructions and whipped up this hat for the hubby. It's made from from Lion's Brand Wool-Ease left over from another hat. I used the stitch from the Blueberry Waffle Socks, which is a favorite of mine. Knit a row, K2,P2 for a row. I liked the I-cord bind off, too!

Next on tap, a cream color hat with some color work, ala Elizabeth Zimmerman. Inspired by Susan's instructions. I think there's some felted slippers that need to be fit in somewhere before the end of the month, too!

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Remember these?

Frogged again. They just didn't fit right. Too lose at the wrist. So, I'm starting over (for the second time) I'm going for a plain look to show off the Noro yarn. And they'll need a good washing because when I wore them at a football game where it rained they smelled like sheep doo-doo.

And here's a hat that I made from some Peruvian wool from Elann. Made to fit my big head.

Friday, November 04, 2005

Here's a scarf I whipped up to wear to the football playoffs tomorrow night.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

You may wonder if knitting is still occuring. It is, but the addition of this to our home has significantly cut down on knitting time.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Leaves, leaves, and leaves

It's been awhile, I know. Life has gotten in the way of blogging. However, knitting has continued on. I whipped out this pair of mittens. There was no real pattern that I followed. Mittens are pretty easy. I adapted the Cascading Leaves pattern and some Noro Kureyon. Just for me! I was surprised, though, the yarn was all supposed to be the same dye lot, but the green at the bottom of the cuff widely varied. I guess the rich color is the real beauty of Noro yarn.

Four times is the charm. This is the sock pattern from the new Knitty. "Falling Leaves." I really gave the toe up version an honest try. After ripping it out three times, I decided that top down was the way to go. Going to be great socks. The photo doesn't give a real good depictation of the pattern, but believe me, it's real nice. And I'm not going to give up on toe up. I like the idea of the provisional cast-on and the short row toe. Just not this time.

A hat for me with Peruvian wool I got a while back from Elann. The pattern is a freebie from the web. I added a few more stitches around. My head is big (stop snickering) and I want lot of room for my hair. I have a whole bag of this yarn. It's soooo soft. I hope it's a good choice for the hat. It's a little heavier than worsted and I'm using Size 10.5 needles. There may be a matching pair of mittens in the future for this yarn too.

Cascading Leaves - first sock almost finished. This is a great pattern. You have to join the Townsend Sock Group on Yahoo to get it. (There's other nice patterns there also.) It really knit up quickly and is very pretty. I did increase the stitch count. (Yes, I have fat feet, too.) I just increased the number of purl stitches and we have a winner.

Here's a close up of the stitch pattern. Could be very useful for many things.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Short Row Toe

I have this lovely yarn that's been marinating in my yarn stash for awhile. I'm intrigued by the pattern in the new Knitty, called "Falling Leaves". Over the past two days I have knit the short row toe FOUR times. The first three versions I tried my darnedest to following the pattern as written. You see, like recipes, I think that at least one time you should try to follow the directions exactly as the author wrote them.

Now, you have to understand, I'm no fan of knitting socks from the toe up. It's not that the toe is that big of a deal, but I have yet to find a cast off that works for me and my ample ankles. (However, I do have a new plan that I'll reveal later in regards to the cuff.)

Anyhow, I don't know of the pattern has an error, or if the knitter just ain't happy, but when I followed the pattern directions, I got large holes and that ain't good. So, I found some instructions for short row toes where the short rows are wrapped. (In a previous edition of Knitty.) And it worked better. I still wouldn't give it an A plus, but I believe I won't reknit the toe again.

As far as my UFO's -- the Whitby socks are complete and I have them on my happy feet as we speak. The "More Fun than Cables" socks are nearing the heel flap on the second sock. And I haven't even cast on for the second blue and white mitten. (I'm not allow to until the "More Fun than Cables" socks are done.)

Friday, September 23, 2005

The porch project is finished. Back to looking like a Victorian house.

On the knitting front. Mitten No. 1 is completed. Even the 11 year old thinks it's pretty neat. Of course, it's in school colors.

Here's a shot of the palm. Overall the mitten is really a bit small for me, but fits the kid. Next pair gets made with larger needles.

Home stretch action on the Whitby socks. I kinda of had a lapse and had second sock syndrome for a bit. But I'm back on track. Whitby should be done tonight. Then I need to get the second mitten done (before cold Friday night football weather sets in). I also have to finish the second "More Fun than Cables" sock and "Cascading Leaves." I also have a couple Christmas projects in the hopper. It's time to get on the ball!

Thursday, September 22, 2005

The ride home

Sandy is having a little contest on her blog by asking folks to enter sky photos on their blogs. Here's my entry. A few weeks ago we were on the ferry from Ocracoke, NC coming back to Hatteras, NC at sunset. I was a great way to end a great day!

Monday, September 19, 2005

Blue and White

I wanted to get at least one mitten done over the weekend, but our internet computer at home is having spyware problems that won't let us log on. But I'm ready to start the decrease on the first mitten. Here you can see the thumb gusset. The red stitches will come out. I'll pick up the stitches and knit up the thumb.

And here's the front. I just LOVE knitting with colors. I've never done it much before and it's SOOOOOOO... much fun.

Friday, September 16, 2005

I just couldn't resist more of the KnitPicks yarn. Here's a pair of mittens I started earlier this week. The pattern is from the Fall 2003 Interweave Knits.

Here's a view of the back and the thumb gusset. I've never done any stranded colorwork before. Actually, it's pretty fun. The pattern is basically a chart which I scanned and enlarged so it's really easy to follow. The hardest part is to remember to twist the two color together over long stretches so there's no long pieces of loose yarn inside. Fun project!

Monday, September 12, 2005

Some new stuff for fall

I got my first ever order from Knit Picks. WOW! The dusty blue, gray, and pumpkin colored yarns is earmarked for socks. This is the first solid color sock yarn that I've had. I really enjoy the self-patterning and striping yarns, but I find I'm less bored if I pick a sock pattern with a bit of a stitch pattern. And to really see stitch patterns solid color yarn is really the best. The blue and white is earmarked for mittens. (School colors, you know.) I'll need to search around for a simple colorwork pattern for mittens. I'm sure I can find something. I might even borrow a pattern from Elizabeth Zimmerman's Doublemosa cap.

And of course, I had to test out how the new sock yarn is going to knit, so here's the start of a pair of Cascading Leaves socks. Pattern from the Townsend Sock Knit-a-long Group on Yahoo. This pattern has four pattern rows with a rib pattern row in between. I wrote out each line on a a 3 X 5 card, punched a hole in the corner, clipped them together with a large split ring and I was off to the races. I had to enlarge the pattern to suit my fat feet, but that wasn't hard and there was good information on how to do that through the group.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

One down, one to go

More Fun than Cables sock No. 1 is completed. And yes it was more fun than cables!

Here's another close-up of the leg showing off the stitch pattern. It was a very enjoyable knit.

Here's my hanging basket of portulaca, white million bells, and pink begonias. Even though it's been really dry and I've had to water it alot this basket is sure looking nice. I did have some trailing dusty miller in it also, but it died (didn't like being dry) and since I've pulled it out, everything else is much happier.

Last but not least is my wandering jew. It was a baby last summer that my MIL gave me. It almost died over the winter, but it's just outstanding now. Hopefully I can keep it happy over the winter.

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

More Fun than Cables

The "More Fun than Cables Sock" (August 26, 2005 entry) is just that. I made some adjustments to the pattern to fit my legs. I'm nearing the heel and I decided that I needed to reduce the diameter a bit. I started out with 72 stitches to cast on, which is the usual size that works for me when I knit with Size 1 needles. I changed the K2's to K3's. To adjust the diameter back down, I just changed the K3's back to K2's. (see the yellow circle) Seems to be working out just fine.

The yarn is a cotton/wool superwash and doesn't have a lot of stretch. So, I think by decreasing near the ankle/heel area may keep them from slouching down. Great pattern. Just enough interest to keep me looking forward to the next row, but no problem to memorize. Thanks, Marguerite!

Monday, August 29, 2005

My Whitby socks are nearing completion. I just love this pattern. Just enough changes over five rows that it really keeps it interesting. And I really like that the center purl stitch pattern cues you in on when to turn the cable.

And here's the start of my "More Fun that Cables" sock. Great pattern by Margene over at the "Stitches of Violet" blog. (It's one of my must read every day blogs.) The yarn is Lana Grosso Cotton yarn that's been aging in my stash for a couple years.

I've been watching Hurricane Katrina most of the weekend and knitting. Both patterns are great for TV watching.

Friday, August 26, 2005

Creating a Cunning Plan

And another week is nearly gone, summer is just about over, school starts on Monday. It’s my favorite time of the year. Sorry, no pictures again today. However, I’ve been working on creative knitting thoughts. I spent some time looking through the Six Sock Knitalong Webring sites. Wow! There’s really some great stuff out there. And as I’m sure you know, there’s some great blogs out there and there’s some that are pretty boring. (mine’s not included in the “great blogs” list)

So, what have I come up with as a plan of action for my knitting in the upcoming months? Here’s what we have so far:

* I have some lovely navy sock wool with a multi-colored twist that is going to become the Amble sock that’s the current pattern on the Six Sox Knitalong.

* I have some turquoise Esprit that is going to become a Friday Harbor sock, inspired by the new Yahoo “Knitting on the Road” group that I just joined this morning. The group is going to knit the socks in Barbara Bush’s “Knitting on the Road.”

* For further inspiration, I also signed up for the Sockknitters Sock of the Month Club list which announces the knit-a-longs that are happening as spin-off groups from the Sockknitters list.

* I have some lovely sky blue wool that I think is going to become a “Branching Out” scarf. The pattern is from one of my favorite bloggers, Susan at “I’m Knitting as Fast as I Can.”

* I’m going to make another Sophie bag, but larger. There’s a pattern for just such an animal called Elizabeth, but I think I can up-size Sophie and design my own.

* There’s also several pairs of felted slippers that need to be completed before the end of December.

* And I’m going to knit up Sarah Bradberry’s “Sweet 16” Knit & Felt hat.

Of course, you know what they say about the best laid plans…I’m sure that soon I’ll have a truck load of transcript work that will need to be done and wreath season is upon us. Which means, I need to be wiring cones and cutting bows.

Of course, I’ve not even mentioned the two shawls that I have started. Both are at about the halfway finished stage. But, you know, there’s only so many hours in the day – plus, I need time to finish reading the Harry Potter books before I can start Digital Fortress by Ken Brown. At least when Survivor starts up again I can knit while I’m watching that! Then there’s the husband who currently has a kidney stone…

So, there's my plans. I'm sure something will come along to muck it all up! But it's a plan. Well, I must be off to buy cranberry juice and console the DH who is trying to pass a kidney stone. (I promise I'll do better with having photos next week.)

Monday, August 22, 2005

End of summer clean up

I had a comment about my Whitby sock and about the book that the pattern is in. It's from Knitting on the Road by Nancy Bush. I first checked this book out of the library. The book has a nice variety of patterns, some with stitch work, lace work, and some colorwork. My only problem with it is that I have large, fat feet and I always have to adjust patterns. In the case of Whitby, I just used heavier yarn and larger needles. Now, that won't work with all the patterns, and I've become pretty adept at enlarging patterns, but it is a nice book and I'm glad that I bought it.

Sorry, there's no photo today. There was only minimal knitting over the weekd. You see the clutter has threated to take over my house. Inside and out.

First, my husband made a heroic effort on the outside and has brought that all back into a managable condition. You see it's been REALLY hot and humid, but extremely dry here. We were away to the beach for a week and we've not had any appreciable amount of rain in a very long time. So, mowing was in order, but weed eating was really the thing.

Secondly, since DH was outside busting his butt, I felt that inside butt busting should be happening as well. So, I started with the yarn that has been multiplying in my living room. I obtain a large plastic storage box and sorted out the yarn that I know I'll never use. It's now all in two large plastic storage boxes, and a large basket. Oh, and there's a medium sized plastic storage box with tapestry yarn.

Next up -- the cleaning out of the dresser that's in the dining room (craft stuff) and then my clothes. There's things in the closet that I haven't worn in eight years. Goodwill here we come.

School starts next Monday. We get to meet the teacher on Friday afternoon. Fifth Grade - big man on campus year. Next year it's off to the middle school and low man on the totem pole again. I'll be glad for fall. It's my favorite time of the year.

It's been so dry that my flower beds really aren't blooming much. The borough is asking everyone to conserve water, so I've really only been dumping water on my two tomato plants. Soon it will be time to cut things back so you can see the blooming hardy mums.

Well, that's all I have for today. By way of knitting news, I'm anxiously awaiting the posting of Marguerite's new sock pattern over at Stitches of Violet. No hurry, I've got time and a few projects I'll need to finish before I can allow myself to start another pair of socks. (Dog lovers will enjoy the doggie picnic news over at Stitches of Violet.)

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Vacation's over

Here's one of the things I was doing last week instead of knitting. We spent the week in the Outer Banks of North Carolina last week. And it was HOT!!! We always try to make a visit to the NC Aquarium, where they were having shark week last week.

On the knitting front I did get a bit done on my Gracie Shawl and started a pair of slippers. But the slippers are going to have to be partially frogged. I didn't end up with the right amount of stitches. The brain was too mushy to concentrate!

Thursday, August 04, 2005

This and that

Vacation time is coming up this week and I've been planning out what knitting I'll be working on. Looks like fun to me!

I have the cuff started on a new pair of socks. I'm hoping to finish up the Whitby socks nex week and get something new started. But, I really think I'm going to wait for the new Stitches of Violet - Better than Cables pattern. It's due out later in the month.

The sunflowers have been enjoying the mass amounts of sun that we've been having. But they don't care for the lack of rain. You can see the leaves just aren't quite what they should be. The second set of blooms are just about to burst forth.

I planted cherry tomatoes in among my flower this year, which has just worked out fine, but the cherry sized tomatoes are really plum sized. They taste good, though!

And finally, here's the porch restoration project on Penn Street. The 1940's style portico was removed snd an original-style Victorian porch is being added. There's a beautiful etched ruby glass in the transom over the front door that is seeing the light of day for the first time in about 70 years.

Friday, July 29, 2005

The sunflowers are starting to bloom. Just for reference, at most the plants are about 18" tall and the blooms are about 3" across. There's going to be more flowers at the intersection of each leaf and the stalk. Most interesting!

It's fair week here and not much knitting is happening. The kid had a couple goes at the bumper cars last night. I'm not much of a ride rider..

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

More Whitby

The heel on the Whitby sock has been turned. I really love this pattern. The cable is beautiful and the purl stitch pattern makes it easy to remember when to cross the cable. The photo shows the left hand cable beautifully, but the right cable looks funny. This is only in the photo and in person, it matches perfectly.

Here's the progress on my mini-potted sunflower. I'm getting buds all over the place! There's a bud ball growing at the base of almost every leaf. With my luck, the dumb thing will bloom while we're on vacation.

Monday, July 25, 2005

Fair week needlecraft

Our fair started yesterday. Needlecraft judging is one of the first things on the agenda. This is just a small sample of the knitting entries. The overall quality of everything in the needlecraft department was up. The judge was very careful and closely looked at each item.

The felted slippers that I talked about in the last post, were felted, trimmed, entered and won first place!

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Scarlet and Grey

This is the before felting photo of my hubby's new slippers. Scarlet and Grey, just as he ordered. (Go Buckeyes!) After felting pics later.

I'm showing you these slippers because I didn't want you to think that I'm not knitting, even though the weather is HOT, the humidy makes the air feel like soup, and I've been tinking several rows on my new Whitby sock project. For some reason, the pattern doesn't call for doing a cable cross over every other row......

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

New sock and sunflowers

I really wanted to cast on for another sock (I'm almost done with the footie...) This is the Whitby pattern from Nancy Bush's Knitting on the Road. It's a great book, unfortunately there are lots of errors and you have to be sure to check out the errata at the Interweave Press web site. Some of the errors are just common sense things, but I'm really surprised.

There are several other patterns that I'd like to made from Knitting on the Road. My problem is that I have large feet and ankles. So, pattern adjustments will be necessary. For the Whitby sock, I'm using Elann's Esprit (cotton/elastic) and I'm knitting on Size 3 needles. Just by adjusting the yarn and needle size the socks should fit great.

Here's an update on the mini-sunflowers. They are about 15" tall and are going to burst forth with bloom!

Here's a close up of one of the forthcoming blooms. I started with five seeds, four germinated, and three are going to bloom. The fourth plant is puny and only about 6" tall -- I don't expect any blooms from it. It's been so interesting to watch!

Friday, July 15, 2005

Felted slipper formula

I dug in to the UFO pile and came up with felted slippers. I had made the first one back in the winter. This is the third pair that I've made and I have others planned. The pattern is from Fiber Trends and it's easy. The yarn is Nature Garn from Elann.

I have found that the secret to the Fiber Trends felted slipper pattern is to use stitch markers to mark the center stitch. It makes the amount of counting needed virtually nil. I also take the time to make myself a chart that's made up of row numbers. Each time I complete a row I just cross off the number. Never any confusion about where I'm at. The decrease rows get circles around the numbers and that way at a glance I can see if I need to decrease. It's very much like sock making.

My only complaint about the pattern is that the original comes printed on a dark teal colored paper which I find very difficult to read. I typed off part of it so that I could print it out on light colored paper. So, that along with my chart of row numbers makes for an easy knit.

In other news, our county has started a construction project where they are enlarging our courthouse to make room for all county offices. I work in a building that overlooks the construction site. I'm going to be starting a blog of daily (or so) photographs of the construction. Should prove to be interesting.

Friday, July 08, 2005

Knitting happens!

Yes, knitting has been happening here. I haven't posted for a while because life kind of interrupted. My dad was in a serious accident on his tractor at the family Christmas tree farm. He spent a week in the hospital and is still recovering, with a long ways to go. Then we had the 4th of July, vacation planning, work, et cetera.

But I'm happy to report that knitting has still been happening here, just at a slower pace than usual. I'm working these footies in Esprit from Elann. I'll probably be entering them in the fair along with a few other items. I have spent some time surfing the knitting blogs. I'm very impressed with the scarf that Margurite is working on as a gauge/practice piece over at Stitches of Violet. Very nice. I'm also green with envy over Susan's trip to Italy.

Vacation has been planned with a beach trip to the Outer Banks. Swimming, fishing, riding the ferry, lunch at Howard's Pub. Here's to hoping there's no hurricane!

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Rip it, Rib it, Ribbit...

My footie is going to frog city. I know, I know. I should have known. I picked up waaaay too many stitches from the heel flap and the instep is large enough for an elephant. Silly me. Easy come, easy go. I think I'll rip back to the heel flap and have another go at it. I'm using 60 stitches around with size 3 needles and that seems a bit large. So, I may decrease down to 56 after the heel flap and see how that goes.

Monday, June 20, 2005

Flowers and knitting

First we have some gardening news! My yellow and purple petunias are blooming full steam ahead! The Lantana is bursting out red and orange. Very pretty. And the dwarf sun flowers are up to about 3" now. There's a total of four plants and they are lots of fun to watch.

I'm down to the toes on my most recent version of footies. These are for me and therefore are much bigger around than the purple pair. They are a combination of several patterns I found on the internet. Hopefully I'll kitchner the toes on this footies tonight and cast on for it's mate.

Some of you may know that I'm the Needlecrafts superintendent for our local county fair which is coming up the last week of July. I've been doing this for about six or seven years. ( I think) It's a lot of fun for not too much work. The department that I supervise covers clothing, knitting, crocheting, rug making, cross-stitch, crewel, and quilts. I enjoy getting to see the items up close during the judging.

I know that county fair judging has been a topic of conversation over the years on various discussing groups. In our case, we do whatever we can to encourage folks to enter their items. They seem to come in three categories: #1 - beautifully executed, well planned, items. #2 - things that were just put together. #3 - "Gee, what can I enter to win some money? Who cares if it's been used, dirty, or I entered it last year." My experience with the judges has been pretty good. They reward category No. 1, encourage category No. 2 to try to do better, and No. 3 just gets ignored, but still displayed.

The needlecrafts area covers a pretty broad range of items and we only have one judge. They tend to know a lot about a one or two subjects and have a working knowledge of the others. Over all it turns out pretty good. This year I did a MAJOR overhaul of the premium book categories. (Exactly what is a carriage robe, anyhow?) I tried to simplify, and broaden the categories and to take into consideration what has been entered over the past several years.

For instance, about ten years ago there was a major grouping for machine embroidery. Even had it's own Best of Show blue ribbon. Over the past five years, there has been very little entered in the way of machine embroidery, some of it pretty bad. So, machine embroidery became integrated with other categories. Knitting was expanded to be more updated to include socks, scarves, shawls, et cetera. So, far I think it's all working out. I've had calls from folks that have never entered things before. Hopefully we can generate more interest.

I'll be entering a live wreath in the Crafts department. I'll let you know how I do!