Monday, May 28, 2007

making, but not so much the blogging

Happy Memorial day to you all. Hopefully you are enjoying the wonderful weekend. It's been incredible around here and I started off the weekend with a long bike ride with my neighbor. I have a road bike and over the years I go from summers of more serious biking to summers of not biking at all. I don't race, but I like to go fast - well fast for me. I've had clipless petals and bike shoes for a few years but never got around to putting the petals on the bike. My neighbor kindly offered to attach them and I have to say, they really make a difference. Of course this was counteracted by my fear of suddenly having to stop and not beaing able to detach from the bike, and riding at least half of the ride with only one clipped in.

Next stop: Massachusetts Sheep and Wool festival
Saturday was again a georgeous day and I had a good time motoring around the festival, petting sheep and yarn alike. There were a number of vendors with anything from alpacas to wheels to fleece to roving to yarn. I had brought a list to rein myself in and I actually stuck to it. I purchased a fabulous skein of skiny sock yarn from Spunky Eclectic for my sockapalooza 4 pal.

spunky eclectic skinny sock yarn

I also bought a niddy noddy to measure yarn with - sorry no photo yet. You can see one here. And third on my list - spinning wheel research. I finally tried a spinning wheel - a lovely Louet S10 - and I was pretty bad at it. But I could tell that once I sorted out the treadling and the hand motions, I would really like it. A lot. I also chatted many people up about their wheels which was fun. I'm not quite ready to buy one yet, but I'm moving closer to the black hole.

and Yes I've been knitting
A few things, but I'll show you the current progress on the mitered square blanket and save some material for later in the week. I spent a bunch of time seaming what I had together so it would seem (seam!) so bad later. Plus it makes it easier to sort out the rest of the color decisions.

yarn bits

blanket progress

I think I want a blanket that is 3 big squares by 5 big squares or 60 mitered squares. So I'm a little over halfway. I'm at marathon mile 12 or so - because I need to save some endurance for the borders. yikes!

and last and maybe least...

I did a bit of drop spindle spinning, as I was inspired by the fiber festival, but I'm not much of a drop spindle spinner. Too slow I gues or mabe I'm too much of a prk and draft perfectionist...

third yarn

Friday, May 18, 2007

I don't have the blues, but a good handle on the turquoises

Hey I've got a finished object to show you all!

baby aran sweater

baby aran cable detail

baby aran label detail

baby aran buttons

I knit most of this on a work tip to St. Louis last week. Because it was the smallest size (three months) it was pretty quick to make. Here are the specs:

Pattern: baby aran sweater from Knitting for Baby
Yarn: Plymouth Encore Worsted - 2 skeins of 4045 blue (used 1 1/2 skeins)
Needles: 5's and 8"s
Size: 3 months

Notes: I was trying to knit something bright and fun without being too gender specific. A good friend of mine is expecting this summer and she doesn't want to know the gender beforehand. She's also pretty funky and I'm sure any child of hers can pull off a bright turquoise traditional cabled sweater with fashion ease. I added the usual hand-embroidered label and fun buttons because I'm convinced that this sweater will look 100 times better with these little finishing details. Plus they're fun to make. I'm not a huge fan of the Encore yarn since it splits a bit and has some acrylic content, but it's inexpensive and machine washable. And I'm thinking moms of young babies might like machine washable goods.

I think this baby may also require a norwegian baby hat - check out this excellent hat that Hello Yarn just finished.

stripy sock on the way

And I'm working on a stripy sock made with two colors of Lang Jawoll. For some reason this sock makes me incredibly happy and it has become the favored project. Must be the stripes!

I'm thinking I'll be at the Massachsetts sheep and woolcraft fair next Saturday - anyone else going to be there?


Thursday, May 10, 2007

pomatomus socks finished

The socks so nice I had to knit three of them. It's true people, the perfectionist knitter strikes again. You may recall that I knit one pomatomus sock over christmas time. It was possibly the most fun sock I've knit - the pattern is brillant and the end result is stretchy and cozy. My only problem is that I didn't do a test gauge, and ended up with a pretty loose sock - a little too stretchy. So I knit the second sock on smaller needles - 2.25mm. Of course that sock turned out much better leaving me with a perfect sock and a stretchy loose slightly saggy sock. And you can see where this is headed. Yes I reknit the first sock with the smaller needles. And while I thought it would never end I'm glad I did it. Or I will be glad next fall cause it is too wonderfully warm around here to be wearing socks today. Here are some photos - please ignore the horribly ghost pale winter legs!

pomatomus socks

pomatomus sock detail.jpg


pattern: pomatomus socks by Cookie A. - free pattern from Knitty winter 05

needles: 2.25mm dpn's

yarn: unknown handpainted yarn bought two years ago on Prince Edward Island - I lost the label...

notes: This is a wonderful pattern and is my favorite pair of handknit socks to date


Sunday, May 06, 2007

weekly update

Hi all! It's been a bit slim around here, but I thought I would take advantage of the glorious weather to take some photos outside. I've decided that one of the fun parts about having a blog is that it's like being able to hav show and tell whenever you, well I, want. Now's good for me - how about you?

I got the best package in the mail this week. Lucy over at ZebraKnits sent me some stunning pieces of fabric from her Malawi quilt - even though I didn't win the drawing. Isn't that incredibly generous of her. Go check out her quilt - it's really an incredible piece with vibrant color. Her package completely made my week.

fabric from zebraknits

Believe it or now I've been slowly knitting away at e's sweater. It takes me most of an evening to knit about 1/2". I'm pretty pleased with the way the design is coming out and how the colors look together. Even the tension on the stranded color work isn't too bad. The hem wants to flip up a bit, but a good blocking should convince it to stay put.

current state of e's sweater

e's sweater detail

But since it feels like I'm making almost no progress, I had to start something more speedily gratifying. There are a bunch of babies coming up, so I'm making a fun little aran sweater from the Knitting for Baby book. I like the shocking color and think it will be pretty gender neutral.

baby aran sweater back in progress

I'm also in on the sockapalooza 4 action and having fun scheming what socks to knit for my secret sock pal. This involves petting a lot of sock yarn to find just the right one...