Wednesday, August 31, 2011

WIP Wednesday

Today's progress for the most part takes the form of frogging. Which is progress of a sort, since it often takes a lot of thought and a lot of work to finally commit to this plan of action.

With my silk mawatas I cast on Sleekit Mitts ... and then ripped out after completing the lace border. Time to admit to myself that my hands are not a woman's small to medium that the pattern is said to fit. That first mitt was knitting up impossibly small. The mawatas are in time-out until an appropriate pattern suggests itself to me.

The shell pink cloud cotton had been knit up into a Hey Teach sweater for my sister a couple of years ago. But how is that I didn't know that my sister HATES pink? I only found that out days before Christmas when she told me that she held her nose and bought a pink sweater for my niece. Oh dear. It's hung sad and unloved in my closet for a couple of years, but starting today that yarn is going to be repurposed into this. At least I hope so.

The only WIP actually behaving is the pair of Canal du Midi socks for my year of projects. The second sock is knitting up quickly and beautifully; thank goodness for that! Do check out the list at Tami's Amis to find a lot more progress and (hopefully) a lot less ripping out.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

necessity ...

... it really is the mother of invention, isn't it?! I mentioned recently that I'm working on a braided scrap quilt. I've pieced most of the braids for the quilt face, but the next step involves trimming the outside edges of the braids parallel to the points where the fabric strips meet down the centre. To do this a quilting ruler is required. Have you seen them? They are basically a piece of clear plexi several inches wide and a foot or more long with grid markings silkscreened onto the front. And they are hellishly expensive. I was looking for one about 8" x 24"; over 50 bucks at my local fabric store! Kinda defeats the purpose of a scrap quilt doesn't it!

The lady at the fabric store did kindly suggest that I could wait until a "members only" sale, buy a membership to their sewing club that day for $20 and then purchase the item for half price. Pay $20 to save $25? That's still not bringing it into the affordable range as far as I'm concerned.

But then I got to thinking. We have scraps of plexi at work - these are just over 7" x 24". We can print in large format on clear adhesive laminate. And I can create a printer ready file with the grid markings exactly how I want them. I think I just unvented a cheaper quilting ruler! I'll let you know how it works out.

Monday, August 29, 2011

the new moon in Virgo

With the new moon in Virgo it's time for a TUSAL update. In the past month I've taken more out of my jar than I've put in. When I packed up my blankets and socks for the Warm Hands Network, I salvaged several lengths of scrap yarn to attach the yarn bands and gift labels to the knitted items. There's a bit of creamy white from Christmas bags and a small amount of red mohair from CeCe but that's about it.

Besides a TUSAL update, what does the new moon mean to knitters? Rebecca Brents offers these insights:

Virgos offer service to others as their way of making their lives count for something. They believe deeply in the need to contribute their energy to the benefit of the greater social order, and they are quite willing to accomplish this by performing the routine, mundane, everyday chores and fulfilling the ordinary responsibilities that keep life running smoothly ... while asking nothing but a little quiet appreciation in return, a kind word of thanks, or just the simple knowledge that they have helped make someone else's path a bit easier.

I read that as Charity Knitting and there's lots of that on my schedule. First priority for September is to finish and send my hats for Innocent's Big Knit. And then - when my other WIPs are caught up - it may be time to start a new blanket for the Warm Hands Network. I've got a bag of Mission Falls in a cranberry red which might knit up beautifully with this pattern.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Come Blog Along Pattern 02 Post 05

Knitting on the Road: Canada Canal du Midi • Conwy • Dalarna • Denmark • Friday Harbor • Hiiumaa • Huron Mountain • New England • The Road to Oslo • Santa Fe • Spey Valley • Christmas in Tallinn • Traveler's Stockings • Uinta Cabin • Unst • Whitby

Here in the GTA we're not expecting to be affected by Hurricane Irene - we're too far inland for that. An overcast, breezy day is likely to be the extent of it.

With cooler temps this morning was ideal for baking bread. We bought this book and we've had good success making really delicious crusty bread. Too delicious really ... the fresh baked bread rarely lasts more than a half hour around here.

With gusty winds, we also thought it wise to harvest the last three pears on our tree. There were lots of pears but the raccoons got most of them. Since my photo was taken, I've moved them to nestle in amongst the bananas on my counter. Google says that's a good way to ripen them. Poor sad little pears.

And with the morning spent around the house, I've finally cast on my final Canal du Midi sock. All week long I told myself that I really needed to find a chunk of time to sit down in front of YouTube demonstrations to master the Double Start cast-on. In fact, I watched this tutorial twice and I think I've nailed it. I did briefly consider just doing a regular old long tail cast on, but I'm glad now to have learned the Double Start cast-on properly. It really does give the cuff a much nicer edge; so much so that it may be my go-to cast on for cuff down socks from now on. That's one real plus for these Nancy Bush patterns - there's always something new and different to try!

Saturday, August 27, 2011


While working away at the yoke of CeCe I took a break to put together another set of stitch markers. I love the last set I made but with two chunky glass beads on each, they're quite heavy ... about 3 grams each. For these, I'm using a 6mm Japanese miracle bead with a wooden bead and antique brass findings. Much lighter ... less than a gram apiece, and much better for my sock projects.

Have you seen miracle beads? They really do seem to glow! The photo doesn't do them any justice; they're quite compelling in person. Too bad there are only nine stitch markers. If I hadn't cracked one of the wooden beads when tightening the wire around the top there would have been ten. From now on, I'd better leave the wire beading to others. My time is better spent knitting, I think.

Friday, August 26, 2011

working away at CeCe

Last night I finished the second sleeve, so I've set those aside for now and set to work adding a couple more repeats to the body of the sweater. Looks like I have plenty of yarn.

Next up? A buttonhole and neck shaping. The pattern directs me to "work 3-stitch buttonhole" - I'm not quite sure how to do that but fortunately there are online tutorials like this one. Remind me again, how did we manage before Google?

Oh yeah, and if the kitchen sink backs up and clogs in the coming days you can remind me about the crochet hook I dropped the sink this morning. Uh oh.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

a tornado watch

We spent last night in amazement at the thunder and lightning from a massive storm. A tornado watch was issued by Environment Canada for our area - that's very unusual for us, our weather is generally pretty moderate. The wild weather gave us some insight into what it must be like to live in Tornado Alley. No thanks!

Power flicked on and off several times, but the constant lightning kept the living room well lit. Enough light to knit by! As it turns out one ball of yarn is sufficient for one sleeve, in fact, there's enough left from that one ball to lengthen them if I want. After the sleeves are done I'll have more than three balls left for the yoke of the cardigan - again, enough to lengthen if I wish. So that's the plan.

All of a sudden this cardigan is flying off the needles, so I'm going with that momentum. Looks like this is one WIP that I can finish up in the next few days.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

WIP Wednesday

Sometimes, after putting a project aside for a length of time, I find it difficult to pick up again where I left off. The questions and worries about restarting grow to alarming proportions. Will I remember where I left off? Had I started the sleeve increases? Was I midway through the lace chart? Can I incorporate the increases into lace pattern okay? Will I knit a few rounds only to realize I've gone wrong?

All that hesitation and concern for nothing. It was no trouble at all to pick CeCe up again when I finally got around to it. The first sleeve is flying off the needles. After about an hour of knitting, it's halfway. It's such an enjoyable knit! And really, incorporating the increases into the lace isn't that hard - the rule is don't do a yarn over if you don't have the stitches to do the corresponding decrease! No need to make it any more complicated than that!

Just one question left - why didn't I get back to it sooner? Check out the list at Tami's Amis for more progress updates. I bet they didn't waste as much time fretting and procrastinating!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011


The last time I chained 15 it was the foundation row for an arm for a Realistic Octopus. And the next time I chain 15, it better be something equally as interesting. There's been an outbreak of a particular blogging award that directs the recipient to reveal 7 things about themselves and then to link, chain mail style, to 15 blogs. FIFTEEN! I don't mean to sound ungrateful - I just wish that award was bestowed on my blog for merit rather than to fill out a list of 15 links. Sorry, that chain stops here.

Seven things about myself? I don't have a ticket to a lottery in the Netherlands or any other international lottery. I'm not in the market for replica watches. I have no penis to enlarge. There is nobody in Nigeria for whom I should stand in as next of kin to inherit their estate. Bill Gates will not be sending me any money for forwarding emails to everyone in my address book. No need to worry about my Facebook (or Citibank) security settings, I don't have an account. Neither I nor any of my friends has been mugged in a park in London, so please don't wire any money.

/end rant

Monday, August 22, 2011

more bags !?!

Seems like these Christmas bags are becoming an obsession around here, doesn't it? They are a pleasure to knit and have given me an opportunity to dig in to the motifs, borders and peeries charted in Alice Starmore's "Book of Fair Isle Knitting". And I've been receiving a lot of positive feedback online and in person; enough to make me think that these would be a good seller at a Christmas craft show.

On Saturday Knit 4 Less had their one year anniversary sale. I picked up a bag each of inky blue, bright green and snow white sport weight acrylic yarn at a very good price. Too bad there was no more red in stock. Saturday afternoon I cast on to knit a medium sized bag with a Norwegian Star motif. By Sunday afternoon the bag was complete, despite spending most of the day doing laundry, cleaning the house, cooking and quilting instead of knitting at all.

One down, dozens more to go. It's okay though, changing up the Fair Isle charts keeps it interesting. At least so far.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Come Blog Along Pattern 02 Post 04

Knitting on the Road: Canada Canal du Midi • Conwy • Dalarna • Denmark • Friday Harbor • Hiiumaa • Huron Mountain • New England • The Road to Oslo • Santa Fe • Spey Valley • Christmas in Tallinn • Traveler's Stockings • Uinta Cabin • Unst • Whitby

So that's the first Canal du Midi sock completed. The second is still to be cast on, but it will be soon I promise. The yarn is lovely - so soft with 20% alpaca content - but the colour is so dark that I find it really hard to see the stitches in the evening when I get home from work. And with so many of the stitches crossing back and forth on every round, I really need to see what I'm doing.

In her introduction to Knitting on the Road, Nancy Bush discusses sock yarn. "I knitted with yarns I love or wanted to try and hope you will use this list to discover yarns you love as well." For half a second I considered ordering the yarns and colourways that Nancy used; then I calculated the cost. The first pair used three different colours - forget it! Instead, I've tried to use various yarns in my stash as well as a few yarns I've picked up here and there. As incentive to get a move on with the second Canal du Midi sock I treated myself to new sock yarn for the next pair: Rocky Mountain Dyeworks. This colourway is called "Dandelion" and I can't wait to try it!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

yes, no, maybe

After playing with the mawata silk a little more, I've drawn a couple of conclusions:

• I'm going to knit it unspun. It's just so nice as is; I'm not confident that my beginner spinning skills would add anything. The great thing about unspun is that I can draft it thinner as I go towards something even and consistent. That's reassuring.

• Although I cast on a Miss Doolittle scarf, I'm ripping that out. I like the silk better in a smooth fabric like plain stockinette. Besides, I'm not at all convinced that I have enough silk to complete a full length scarf. Instead maybe Sleekits? Perhaps with a shorter cuff knitted as completed mittens and not fingerless gloves?

Nothing seems very decided, does it? Blame the silk - it's so beautiful that I desperately want to do it justice. Sleekits it is. And if I'm not happy with that, I can always rip out and rethink once more. Yes, Sleekits, at least for now.

Friday, August 19, 2011

finished object Friday

When I saw a Braided Ball on another blog I was intrigued. And then when I saw Bernat Mosaic on sale it all clicked. Let's try it!

First, the yarn: it's an inexpensive acrylic fabricated as a cheap and easy care alternative to Noro. They've succeeded in my books from a colour standpoint - the colours are beautiful, the repeats are long and the transitions are very attractive. Nicer than Noro, in fact, which I find gets very muddy in transitions. I don't think this pattern shows the colours to full advantage; instead, something like this would be stunning (and machine washable)!

It feels like a brushed cotton on my hands, and like cotton, has little stretch. The knitted fabric is very soft and feels slightly felted. Many Ravelers complain that the yarn shreds and falls apart with handling, and they're right, it won't take much stress. I had no trouble knitting it, but seaming or frogging would be an entirely different story. In that regard, it reminded me of Rowan Felted Tweed.

As for the pattern, it's really simple until you hit the assembly stages. The ball is constructed from six bands of stockinette fabric (12-13 grams of worsted weight each) which are woven through each other and then stitched into closed bands. Weaving strips three and four through the first two isn't hard. But when you get to strips five and six, it's awkward. I could have used a couple of extra hands to help hold the other bands in place.

Finished, it's about the size of a softball. Although hollow in the middle - I might put in a bell - the bands are sturdy enough to give the ball a pleasant firmness. Looks like my braided ball is going to live on my desk as a stress ball, at least for the time being. As much as I enjoyed making the ball, I can't see myself making more. After all, what would you do with them?

It's worth taking a look at Tami's Amis to see more finished objects, but I warn you, looking does seem to have the unfortunate effect of adding to my own project list. Many fun and interesting things!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Thursday's List of Awesome

i) Hitting it right on the dollar when filling the gas tank. The higher the price of gas, the harder it is!

ii) Orange. Frank Sinatra was right; orange IS the happiest colour.

ii) Friends who say "Stop worrying about that. Let ME take care of that."

iv) Arriving at the mall just as someone leaves a prime parking spot right near the door.

v) Rain at night.

Hungry for more awesome? Check out Neil Pasricha's 1000 Awesome Things!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

WIP Wednesday

I was suffering pangs of buyers regret when I considered the cost of the fancy yarn for the first Christmas bag, but instead of beating myself up over it, I've decided to knit up every yard of that gorgeous yarn in a series of smaller bags. After all, with every additional bag the unit cost comes down to something more reasonable, right?

I'm working in three sizes: the original large size on 96 sts, a medium size on 64 sts and a small size on 48 sts. The large size is perfect for books or DVDs. The small size fits a gift card plus some small chocolates or candy-canes. And the medium size? Well, something in between. Maybe a pair of hand made socks or some lush soap with a washcloth? I've got lots of ideas!

Did you notice the pompom? My thinking is to make iCord drawstrings for the bags and finish the ends with pompoms. I'll give that a try today and see how that compares to grosgrain ribbon.

Had enough of Christmas in August? Want to see fabulous works-in-progress that aren't annoyingly festive? Check out Tami's Amis here.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

things would be different

If Gavin was the knitter, things would be very different.

He'd never run short of yarn for a long tail cast on, he tells me. Rather, he'd unwind miles and miles of yarn to make sure, and then just throw away the excess.

He wouldn't waste a minute worrying about whether something was coming out too big or too small. And he'd never rip out and reknit on smaller or larger needles. Instead, he'd find someone bigger or smaller to give the finished knit item to.

There wouldn't be much sock knitting going on. Gavin's not a fan of socks, preferring to pad around barefoot or in flipflops. Besides, do you know that you can buy socks much cheaper than you can make them?!

If there was much knitting going on at all, it'd be mostly in shades of grey, black and blue.

And if he suddenly realized - like I did last night - that the reindeer colourwork chart should have been knit upside down for a top down bag he wouldn't rip it out and start again. Oh no, he'd just sew up the original opening and create a new opening on what should have been the bottom.

Monday, August 15, 2011

quilting update

Good morning. It's an eye-opener isn't it? A quiet Sunday home alone afforded me an opportunity to spend the whole day quilting and I took full advantage. Ages ago I went through my fabric stash pulling out all the batik scraps and cut them down to 6" x 2" strips with a plan to sew them up into a braid quilt. I've finally put that plan into action.

The quilt face will be assembled from seven "braided" strips. So far I've pieced together three, and if there's fabric left when I've completed seven, I'm going to make them all a bit longer. Once the main part of the face is assembled I'll add a border (or two) and then decide on a backing fabric. But should I butt the braids? Or separate them with a stripe of border material?

This quilt pattern is so easy and goes together so quickly - stitch, iron, stitch, iron, stitch, iron, then stand back to admire. But now I need to get this finished. Why the rush? The kitchen counter is half covered in strips sorted into piles by fabric pattern. The ironing board is blocking access to the fridge and stove. The dining room table has been repurposed as a sewing table. And the entire process is scattering lint and tiny threads everywhere. That can only be tolerated for so long.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Come Blog Along Pattern 02 Post 03

Knitting on the Road: Canada Canal du Midi • Conwy • Dalarna • Denmark • Friday Harbor • Hiiumaa • Huron Mountain • New England • The Road to Oslo • Santa Fe • Spey Valley • Christmas in Tallinn • Traveler's Stockings • Uinta Cabin • Unst • Whitby

Today it seems that my year of projects update is more of a lack-of-progress report than otherwise. This first Canal du Midi sock is a couple inches further along - not much to show.

I've got lots of excuses if you want to hear them: playing with silk mawatas on Tuesday, knitting Christmas bags obsessively on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, starting a CeCe cardigan ... pretty much doing everything but knit these socks.

The knitting outlook for today doesn't look any more promising. With the house all to myself, I'm going to spend the day quilting. Now that's something I haven't done for a while. I've gathered up all my batik fabric scraps and cut them down to uniform strips with the idea of making a braid quilt. Can't wait to get started!

Friday, August 12, 2011

finished object Friday

Pattern: Fair Isle Snowflake Gift Bag
Yarn: Tanis Fiber Arts Yellow Label DK in Poppy & Natural colours
Needle size: 4mm
finished size: approx. 8-1/2 x 11"
Mods: picot edge at top, kitchener stitch to close bottom

I started this Wednesday evening and finished it on the train ride home on Thursday, so that's a pretty quick knit with no seams and little other finishing. As I knit I wondered if it wasn't on the large side, but now I think the size is actually quite handy - perfect for a couple of paperbacks or DVDs. It'd also be nice for enclosing a hostess gift, teacher gift or caregiver gift, don't you think?

The yarn is fantastic - lovely subtle colour shifts, very soft and squishy. I'll definitely buy more, but not for something as pedestrian as gift bags. If I do more bags, I'll opt for Cascade 220 instead to bring the costs down. There's enough of the red Tanis DK left (43gr) to do a small bag, half the size. Why don't I cast that on right now for something to knit on my train ride to work today?!

Be sure to check out the list at Tami's Amis to see what everyone else has been up to!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Thursday's List of Awesome

My Thursday posts are inspired by Neil Pasricha's list of Awesome Things found here. Since starting these posts I've found that I take special care to notice and remember the awesome everyday - a happy side effect! Here goes with this week's list:

i) local vine ripened tomatoes

ii) going through a car wash

iii) dropping in at the LYS by chance on the day of the annual inventory blow out sale

iv) when an email pops in to your inbox from an old friend you haven't seen or heard from in thirty years, and she sounds just the same!

v) a picot edge - looking at it after it's done though, not while you're doing it.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

WIP Wednesday

The main body of this CeCe sweater is knit to the point where neck shaping should begin. I'd like to make the body an inch or so longer but I'm not sure there's enough yarn. As there's no chance of getting more - it's mystery yarn that was donated to the community centre - I'd better pay attention now.

Just how much yarn will each of the 3/4 length sleeves take? The best way to find that out is to knit one of them, so that's what I'm doing. After the sleeves are done I figure I need about 75 gr for the neck and shoulders. If there's more than that, I'll add a bit more to the body.

It's a pretty little sweater and has knit up very quickly so far, but now I'm at the tricky part ... increasing while incorporating the increases into the lace pattern. That will also require my undivided attention, so I expect the rate of progress to slow dramatically. I'm hoping to finish sometime next week, but maybe that's unrealistic. My deadlines usually are.

Have a look at the posts listed at Tami's Amis for more WIP Wednesday updates!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

they're here! mawatas!

They came in the mail yesterday - my silk hankies or "mawatas" from Sunnyside Ellen! And they are so flat out incredible that I feel a bit paralyzed about how to proceed.

First, I've had a look around the internet to see what kind of tutorials are available. There's a very good article here with step-by step pictures and descriptions of how silk hankies are made from cocoons. Imagine, each thin little layer is the silk from one cocoon!

Now, where to go from here? Knitty has an article that explains how to draft and spin the silk from this hankie form to yarn. Towards the end of her article, Amy Singer reports that you can knit the roving once it's drafted without spinning it at all. And she recommends that you do just that to get a feel for it and whether you're happy with how thick or thin you're drafting it.

Unspun silk roving from mawatas - that's what the Yarn Harlot used for her mittens blogged here. I'll admit, I'm really tempted to go this route. It's certainly sounds easier than spinning it all. But then Amy Singer says this "Personally, I like this stuff best once it's spun...", so I better try spinning a small sample at least to see what I think. The Yarn Harlot's mitts took 30 grams, and I have 50 grams stacked neatly in front of me, so I have enough to do a bit of experimenting.

But what to knit? I'm perplexed about that, although I'm gravitating towards Anne Hanson patterns like Miss Doolittle or Curling Mitts. Thoughts? Ideas? Suggestions?

Monday, August 8, 2011

a little more CeCe

Thanks for all the positive thoughts and comments for Gavin; he did great! The paddlers came ashore at Ashbridge's Bay park at about 8pm - 14 hours after they started. I caught up with Gavin at the halfway point check-in and was reassured by how well he looked then. Seemed like smooth sailing to that point. His afternoon was punctuated by a couple storms and some difficult chop, but he had enough left in the tank to overcome it all and finish third (not that it was a race or anything*). Hurray Gavin!

*The first place finisher is a former olympic paddler and both guys who finished ahead of him were half his age.

As for my knitting progress, that was punctuated by pounding head tiredness, inattention and stupidity. I worked for a couple of hours on my Canal du Midi sock but it was just too complicated for my tired head - I ended up tinking back almost as much as I knit forward. Never mind. I put the sock aside and knit almost three repeats of CeCe. Not a huge amount but at least it's forward progress. And it's enough to convince me that this yarn will be fine, which is also progress of a sort.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Come Blog Along Pattern 02 Post 02

Knitting on the Road: Canada Canal du Midi • Conwy • Dalarna • Denmark • Friday Harbor • Hiiumaa • Huron Mountain • New England • The Road to Oslo • Santa Fe • Spey Valley • Christmas in Tallinn • Traveler's Stockings • Uinta Cabin • Unst • Whitby

With the heel turn complete and the gusset decreases finished, there's not much knitting left on this first Canal du Midi sock. In this dark lush colourway of Arequipa it's hard to see the stitch detail and the long alpaca hairs don't help either. That's not stopping me though - on my hands (and on my feet) this yarn feels heavenly!

Today's the day for Gavin's paddle for MS. He and several others are paddling 65km (40 miles) across the western side of Lake Ontario to raise funds for MS. Our day started at 3:15am - helped by generous amounts of caffeine - to get him to the meet-up spot by 4:30am. The paddlers hit the water at the base of the Skyway Bridge in Hamilton by 6am. I'll be heading out the door in just over an hour to wait at the halfway checkpoint at Jack Darling Park in Mississauga and then onto Cherry Beach for another checkpoint before the big finish at Ashbridge's Bay Park in the early evening. The whole paddle should take them 12-16 hours depending upon the wind and waves. It's quite a feat!

As for me, it'll be a day of driving and waiting. I've got a couple of knitting projects packed up to come with me. After all, I may as well knit while I await the paddlers, right?

Saturday, August 6, 2011

starting CeCe

When I was last at the community centre, the ladies pressed upon me a bag of yarn with a mostly completed scarf. Poor scarf, I imagine the maker abandoned it because it was balled up and curling on itself. Nope, not worth finishing. The yarn, Sortil├Ęge by Lane Monterosa of Italy, is 80% wool + 15% mohair + 5% acrylic. Not something they'd use in the baby clothes and blankets that they prefer to knit and crochet. Could I make something of it, they asked?

The colour, a very bright warm red, is my sister's favourite. And, if I'm not mistaken, there's about 1100 meters of it. Should be enough to make a cropped cardi like CeCe, right? The only thing that concerns me is the fuzziness of the mohair - how will that work with the lace pattern? The best way to find the answer to that is to try it. I'll let you know how it goes.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Finished Object Friday

Just one finished object to show off today, and I'm showing it to you with mixed feelings. I finished my Hyperbolic Scrubbie - a very quick and easy crochet project which I've worked in Phentex Craft yarn. The yarn's plastic, so it dries quickly and doesn't rot or mildew. Perfect for life beside my sink!

Pros: love the look and feel of it, really enjoyed making it
Cons: it's shape and sturdiness don't make the best scrubbie

I thought about doing another with a much larger hook for a drapier fabric but I'm still not convinced that the shape is ideal for scrubbing pots. Instead the rest of the Phentex yarn will be knit up as Tribble scrubbies. I've made a few of those before and they work great!

Want some great ideas, or just want to see what other people have been accomplished? Check out the list at Tami's Amis!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Thursday's List of Awesome

i) a holiday Monday you'd forgotten about until the Friday before

ii) when a cashier opens just as you approach with your full grocery cart

iii) catching an earlier train home

iv) frozen blueberries in yogurt

v) unwinding just the right amount of yarn for your long tail cast-on

For more small pleasures be sure to have a look at Neil Pasricha's List of Awesome.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

WIP Wednesday

Today finds me knitting up little bunny hats for fruit drink bottles. The Innocent Drink company has a Big Knit each year - knitters and crocheters send in little hats to fit their 250ml drink bottles, and for every behatted bottle sold 25c is donated to Age Action Ireland. It's kind of fun to make up these little hats and it's a great way to use up scraps of yarn. Last year I knit up every last inch of DK yarn in my stash into little hats with pompoms.

This year, though, I've been feeling a bit more adventurous. I've been looking at egg cozy and finger puppet patterns to see which can be adapted to drink hats. And I'm starting with this one - a bunny eared egg cozy.

It's cute and, miracle of miracles, it's knitting up the right size, but I think I'm going try some mods. More gradual increases from the crown and a more generous seed stitch brim for starters. There's enough of this lilac coloured cotton to knit half a dozen. So that's the plan for today.

To see what so many other clever people have been up to, check out Tami's Amis. Congratulations Tami on a year of WIP Wednesday posts!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011


With my year of projects socks on needles, I wanted to have a second project that was quick, easy and fun. But what? Last night I decided to look through the small projects in my Ravelry Faves and Queue. And here's where it starts:

Ever heard of Hyperbolic Geometry? Apparently it is the geometric opposite of the sphere. On a sphere, the surface curves in on itself and is closed. On a hyperbolic plane the surface curves away from itself at every point. In other words....

In Euclidean geometry, as a circle gets larger, the length of the circumference increases linearly. But with a hyperbolic plane, we're talking EXPONENTIAL increases.

You can impress your family and friends by making your own hyperbolic surface! All you do is increase the number of stitches in each successive row or round of a crochet project.

I think it's going to be an awesome scrubbie. Doesn't everyone needs a scrubbie that looks like brain coral? Prepare to be impressed ....

Monday, August 1, 2011

Diamond Point Lace

This Diamond Point Lace Collar knit up beautifully; I like it so much more than I ever thought possible. The fit seems perfect - it ruffles and drapes just right. I'm so glad I took a chance on this pattern, in fact, now I feel like trying it again with mawata (silk hankies) so I've ordered some!

This is the third collar for Kristen's Mom whose birthday is coming up fast. Time to get these in the mail!

Now, what to do next?