Tuesday, December 16, 2008

FO: Forty Shades of Green

Finished CPH

Yarn: Kilcarra Donegal Tweed
I've gone on and on about this yarn, so I think you must know by now how I feel about it!

Needles: Needlemaster Circulars size 5, 6 & 7
They work, mostly. Wish I had remember to go down to a 5 for the ribbing on the body of the sweater, had to be careful that it didn't grow with blocking.

Pattern: Central Park Hoodie
A fairly straight forward pattern. As a beginner I found it accessable.

Pattern Modifications & Knitting Adventures:

As many of you know, I went around and around with this yarn trying to get gauge because I was afraid to recalculate the numbers on my first sweater project. After coming to terms with the fact that I just could not get 4.25 st per inch, I thought that the math would work out to do the second from smallest size (this was hard to figure out as I was unsure how much to allow for seaming and the cables). In the end I went with my gut and knit the size 40 which with my gauge came out to 35.5 inches around. It turned out that 2.5 inches of ease was just right for a cozy sweater!

I didn't do any modifications to the sweater pattern except recalculate for my gauge and shorten the hood by 1.5 inches. It still is functional, just not as bulky.

Things learned:

Seaming is mostly intuitive, especially with cables involved. It also didn't hurt to decrease in the middle of the cable (k2tog) the row before binding off in an attempt to keep the edge from flaring when seamed.

Picking up stitches is mostly intuitive. After marking of two inch areas and deciding how many stitches to pick up in each, it is remarkable how much flexibility there was.

Blocking works wonders, but not miracles.

Think carefully about how things will look when planning cuffs on a sweater. Make sure the seam is hidden and the "right" side of the cast on will show.

Testing button holes in a swatch pays off. Your results may vary.

It is very, very difficult to pick the perfect buttons for one's dear, darling, brand-new sweater.

All in all, I am beside myself that there is a happy ending to my "first sweater" saga.

Finished CPH


Monday, December 15, 2008

Self Portrait With A New Sweater

CPH Self Portrait II

CPH Self-Portrait

This picture taking with a timer thing was harder than I thought it would be. Is there some secret to all those self portraits I see on flickr? Any comments are welcome. For those who want to SEE the SWEATER, do not fear, better photos are coming soon with the FO post!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

A Yarn Ball Wreath?

Yes, JoAnn has a pattern for one (pdf link). And you know what? I'm tempted...

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Things I'm Loving Right Now

Kilcarra Donegal Tweed - it is true, I'm addicted. I'm already looking for another sweater pattern that will do justice to this yarn. This comes to mind. Now I just need the skills...

Buttons for the sweater of destiny. I highly recommend M&J Trimming for the makers of handknits who live in tiny towns and therefore must order the perfect buttons online.

A few knitting patterns of course - Liesel and Reversible Cable-Rib Shawl.

The Messiah - This makes the season come alive. Scripture to music. The amazon reviewers quibble about this version, but it makes me nostalgic.

The Snowman - I love the music, even more so because it makes me think of the animated film. So sweet.

Random House Book of Fairy Tales - This is the fairy tale book of my youth (I seem to be regressing here, yes?) and the artwork brings all my favorite stories to life. Strangely I have never seen a cover to this book that I like, but inside it is gorgeous.

Hamlet - as close to a definitive film version as we are going to get. Enough genius here to get me through four hours. See... now I've worked back up into my teens.

A triad of Amarna period explorations - Akhenaton: Egypt's False Prophet, The Search For Nefertiti, Nefertiti: Egypt's Sun Queen. These three give a sweeping view of the many, many, many theories and the various evidence (and lack thereof). A great way to put the tidy history television specials in context.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Nothing New Under The Sun

This next week I'm going to be teaching about one of the most fascinating men in history. To some a "fanatic" and a "madman" to others "a great reformer" and "a saint." He came to power in a great nation, at the peak of it's economic, political and military might. Although apparently young and inexperienced, he initiated sweeping programs and reshaped the political landscape. His message was one of change. His symbol was the rising sun. His incredible personal charisma and leadership inspired wave of innovative art, architecture, and poetry. Yep, him. It's a crazy world isn't it?

P.S. (About the sweater, I finished it but I'm waiting for the buttons... and a convenient opportunity for an outdoor photoshoot... in December... don't laugh!)

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Two Views

CPH sleeve

There were a few moments a couple of mornings ago when the sun peeked into my window and I finally managed to capture the beauty of Kilcarra Donegal Tweed. Don't you love the rugged greenness? I, in fact, am so taken with this yarn that the thought of having no more to knit (since this project will have eaten almost all of my 1,660 yds) that another package of it is now wending its way from Ireland at this moment. Since great service and a great product deserve due credit, let me put in a plug here for the ebay seller Irish Yarns & Crafts. She buys this yarn coned from the Donegal mill and makes it available for a reasonable cost. There is even a sale going on right now, so it would be well worth checking out the link :)

Now as much as we would all like to pretend that our knitting looks like this all the time, it does not. No, it looks more like this...

A giant, poorly lit blob, entangled with various needles and threads hanging off in all directions. For those of you who are non-knitters (and have managed to last this long - bless you), I will interpret this picture. It is a sweater "in progress." The orange threads on either side of the sweater fronts mark off two inch lengths in order to help me pick up an equal number of stitches along the edge. The needles down the right side show where I have picked up stitches so that I can knit a button band. The sloppy mass at the top is a hood - the top not yet stitched together. And that little scrap of paper safety-pinned to the right side says "buttons." I am hardly one of those knitters who can remember more than one thing at a time.

Since this photo, I have actually knit and bound off the right band. It pulls in *just* a bit. (Please tell me this will block out perfectly). Now all I have to do is figure out what I want to do for buttons, pick up and knit the left side - including button holes, block the bands, seam the hood, weave in the rest of the ends, and try to steam the shoulder seams into submission. Hmm... now that I wrote all that out, it makes my by thanksgiving goal sound less than realistic.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

The Sweater That Ate My Brain

Gets quiet around here when I'm up to my eye balls in a project, doesn't it? I think of how much I appreciate those people who snap photos of their wips at regular intervals and write detailed posts about the pro's and con's of button placement. Gives me some solace when I want advice from someone who has actually knit a sweater before. Also makes me think I too should leave some of these helpful posts in my wake as I stumble through this. Alas, I find I am not motivated to post when I can't get decent pictures. Where did the sun go?

The heap of wool on my couch is now starting to resemble a sweater. Sleeve one is seamed in and sleeve two is blocked, but still drying. I've picked up the stitches for the hood and made peace with the gaps between the neck stitches and back stitches by promising myself to go back and tidy those up during my final finishing of the sweater. Ever onward...

Thursday, October 30, 2008

I have of late...

Don't worry, I haven't lost all my mirth (unlike my good friend Hamlet). In fact, the house has been haunted by the smell of wet wool... and wet alpaca, which is less romantic, since to me it smells like wet dog. But I digress.

I finally finished the last of my Romney yarn - the finest I've spun yet. Don't get too excited lace spinners... it's hardly even sport.

romney 2 ply

It did not come out quite as planned. I started with a little under 4 oz of Romney and wanted to spin it at a lace weight. I spun up two bobbins and plied them together. And when I say plied, I mean I REALLY added some twist. Even after the initial wash, whack, and dry the yarn had some kinks. Though they seem to have settled out now.

So all that resulted in the skein of yarn to the left. Which came out to 200 yards - exactly half of the yardage I needed for my shawl. All was not lost though. I had more fiber, sort of. You see when I fell in love with the fiber originally, I realized that I probably didn't have enough, and I requested more from the lovely local lady at the farmer's market. So theoretically my second batch probably even came from the same one sheep. However, there was a marked difference in the quality of the second batch. It was much rougher. So either it was from a different year, or the first 4oz bump I got had a proportionally greater selection of the soft areas of the fleece.

Hope springs eternal though, so off I went to spin some more. The second 4oz yielded 230 yards. Not surprisingly, over the months I slowly gave into the temptation to spin thinner even though I used my cue card fairly regularly. I'm also wondering if my failure to ply the second skein as severely could have resulted in more yardage. The more the yarn is twisting around itself, the thicker it gets. Anyway: skein one, positively plump. Skein two, relaxed.

Finally, the second skein is really *just* at touch lighter in color. Interesting that that wasn't apparent to the eye until the twist was added, but is is discernible now. Although the overall color itself is hard to pin down. The brownness/greyness of this fiber has a certain phantasmagorical property. The camera doesn't ever see quite what the eye sees...

So, once again, another project where half the fun has been learning from the unexpected. I'm thinking I might try the shawl anyway alternating between the two skeins for a more rustic feel, but right now I'm distracted by a project that has previously fallen under a blog jinx.

this is my knitting on photoshop

Do you think a photo was permissible, or are the sleeves now in big trouble?

Friday, October 10, 2008

Blood Oranges

blood orange

I peeled my orange / That was so bright against / The gray of December / That, from some distance, / Someone might have thought / I was making fire in my hands. "Oranges" by Gary Soto

These were originally purchased for a photography experiment. I wanted to catch some of those vibrant autumnal colors that I so love - the deep purple of Italian prunes especially. Well, as you can guess (from the lack of plum photos), that my fruit photography has a ways to go. But these oranges were fated to be something special. I recently had the opportunity to borrow Apples for Jam from my local library, and in a fit of recipe testing (come on, admit it, you get carried away too sometimes don't you?) these were the only oranges I had on hand for orange glazed chicken. Ripe blood oranges have a surprisingly light and floral taste that mellows with cooking, but still adds an elusive sweetness to the final dish. These particular oranges were also highly pigmented and yielded a beautiful purple juice. So, with my plethora of alterations to the original recipe I give you...

Blood Orange Glazed Chicken

½ cup brown sugar
½ cup fresh squeezed blood orange juice (about 2 small oranges)
¾ cup tomato sauce
1 ½ Tablespoon soy sauce
1 ½ Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 cup water
2 Tablespoons wildflower honey
2 teaspoons lemon juice
Zest of one small lemon
2 chicken breasts

Preheat the oven to 325. Put the sugar, orange juice, tomato sauce, soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, water, honey and lemon juice in a pan and bring to a boil. Stir to dissolve sugar. Simmer for 5 minutes. Put the chicken in a roasting pan and pour the sauce over. Bake for 1 hour, turning and basting. Near the end of the cooking time, turn the oven to broil to help reduce the sauce and glaze the chicken. Turn and baste frequently, being careful not to let your supper burn. Right before serving, grate lemon zest onto chicken.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Just a thought

I love this skirt. I wonder if there is any way to use a drum carder to blend up some color transitions like that.

Friday, October 3, 2008

It's a grey day here...

The rainy season is starting up. Fortunately, I fiber to play with.


This first photo is a Gotland roving that I purchased from Crown Mountain Farms last year.
There isn't quite enough fiber for the project I am envisioning, so I've been looking for something just as special that would compliment it.


This year at OFFF there was a stall with some gorgeous raw Gotland fleeces for sale. Had I not been on a budget, I might have given in. As it is, I am sorry enough that I had ditched my camera by that point... those perfect ringlets of wool were lovely. However, I did manage to score some pin drafted Gotland fiber that has lots of lamb's fleece in it.


For comparison, here they are together. Quite a contrast in feel... the roving is dense, lustrous, and a bit more course... while the pin drafted fibers are soft, airy, and even show a bit of curl.

next hat?
(Cotswold curls/Gotland roving)

Together with the Cotswold curls from the stash I think these would make a great hat. And if, for some reason, I should get bored, I have some alpaca to play with too...


Oh, dear... I do get stuck in color ruts...

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Guess What?


Somebody's kind husband drove her to Oregon Flock & Fiber Festival.
*sqee!* More to come...

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

My New Hybrid

(voice over) Previously on Noteworthy Knits... Rosina finished her mother's birthday shawl, but wondered if she had enough time to finish her own handknit for the event.

Well, the answer was... sort of. Knitting like mad during the 8 hour drive, I arrived at the point where I needed to decide what sort of edging I was going to put on the shawl. Not wanting to duplicate the Icarus I made for the birthday girl, I determined to knit the Icarus body until I figured out what I wanted to do for the edge. Long story short, I bound off and blocked it the night before the party, just as it was. It was *just* big enough to pin around my shoulders. Later I undid my bind-off and knit the edging. If I had been very clever, I could have slightly altered the body of Icarus so I could smoothly transition to the Shetland border. As it was I had to decrease two stitches within between every diagonal rib.

hybrid shawl

I figured that during blocking I could recover the triangle shape. While I was able to do so (with LOTS of stretching) the edge of the shawl tends to ripple and will not stay blocked into points. No great tragedy there, although if I ever make another, I'll make it easier on myself and set up better for the transition.

hybrid shawl

I'm glad I kept knitting, this size is much more my style.


One of my favorite thing about this shawl is how the sheen of the yarn and the pull of the pattern
produce this optical checkerboard. I'm hoping to get a lot of mileage out of this lovely wrap :)

(PS -For anyone yearning to see details about yarn or needle size please see my Ravelry project page.)

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Recycled Herringbone Bag

herringbone bag

Remember pay it forward? My final project did get finished... and when I was mentioning to someone today how it seems to take forever for me to sew a bag with a lining, the herringbone bag (and its sad blog neglect) came to mind.

Last fall I found an enormous men's blazer at the thrift shop that had clearly seen better days... and yet the honest, woolly earthiness of the colors won me over. It had a brown with the deep reddish tint of good farmland soil and a nice solid grey. And really, what's not to like about herringbone? It took me ages to construct the bag because the deconstruction of the jacket provided oddly shaped pieces of fabric and I wanted something that reused some of the original details intact. Ultimately the plan for a fold-over flap was scrapped (too hard to line, and obscured the pockets) and a slim book bag was born.

herringbone bag

My desire for a fusion of very modern lines and classic fabric was somewhat obscured by my amateur sewing skills. I was completely unable to to top stitch evenly around the top of the bag and handle (my usual trick) so some painful hours were spent hand stitching the lining and bag together. Oh, and there was interfacing and boning and a magnetic snap closure or two...
How people crank out heavy duty bags is a bit of a mystery to me.

herringbone bag

When I was done I almost couldn't part with it...

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Bring The Garden Inside...

my herb garden

Parsley on potatoes. Chopped oregano on fettuccine alfredo. Chives and mint with Asian summer salad. Basil and tomatoes. I love it that summer dishes can be so flavorful and simple. If you have access to fresh herbs (farmers' market anyone?) may I recommend two of my new finds this summer: Chilled Golden Tomato Bisque and Summer Noodle Salad? In each of these the fresh herbs are the finishing touch that brings everything together.

Aside from the cooking, there has been much traveling and some preparation for a new job... so I'm sorry if it has been quiet around here. I'm planning on participating in the up coming Ravelymics, and I'm looking forward to getting back to my knitting.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

At last... a word cloud generator for the graphically unenlightened... wordle.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Now that was a party...

Back home relaxing after a wonderful couple weeks (!) celebrating my mother's birthday.
We started out by picking up my grandparents and taking them to the main festivities in Pullman - a family BBQ with surprise "Palouse Home Companion" skit (brought to you by vanilla, the flavor a maturity), followed by an community wide ice cream social. It was all great fun.
I was supposed to do the monologue for the skit, but got all flustered and weepy thinking of what a wonderful person my mom is and what she has done for so many people. Mr. M came to the rescue with a superb keilloresque recap of the week that summed up a lot about our family life and let me give my little tribute at the end. You know what? We're so much better together, and that's why I am so glad we are married :)
Then there was an evening with home-made ravioli and black forest cherry chocolate cake... a trip to the lake... a chance to talk to my aunties... and hold my new little cousin... then the party came to my house and there were crab cakes and walks by the beach and thrift shopping and summer purse sewing and discussions about Njal's Saga and Middlemarch... *happy sigh*
I enjoy my family so much and I'm very thankful for the time with them this summer.
Oh, and that shawl that I was knitting and knitting and knitting for the party? I bound off and blocked it the night before and it was just big enough, but of course in all the hubbub I didn't get a picture on my camera. So, I'll have to wait for Grandmother's film to be developed. It's not the last of the shawl though, I have much more yarn and I'd like to figure out how to add a decorative border. Just need to summon the will to tink the bind-off, remark the stitches and figure out the math for the border... or I could just keep reading Kon-Tiki... hmmm....

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Happy Birthday Mom!

mom's icarus

Pattern: Icarus, minus one body repeat, following errata as marked on the designer's web site.

icarus point

Yarn: Garnstudio Cotton Viscose, 7 skeins (840 yards)
The rows of yo's in the body didn't block out very open, probably because of the fiber choice, but the rest of the pattern is quite defined. And I could run fishing line down each line of yo's and reblock if I wanted (just don't think it's worth reblocking the beast). Overall I am very pleased with this yarn. It has a wonderful sheen and makes a fabric that is thick, slick, and slightly cool to the touch.

icarus wings

With a shawl though, it's not just how it feels, or how it looks hanging in a window...
it's how the pattern looks on the body too. Design elements can disappear or suddenly become eloquent when worn...

mom's icarus

And this is where I fell in love with Icarus. Wearing it 3/4 wrap style.

Love the shape, love the drape. You're sure you wanted a shawl for your birthday?

Climbing Mt. Icarus

icarus 2

Having summited once, the knitter embarks again. Is 3.5 more repeats before 7/13/08 at 3:00 pm possible? Who can say...

Friday, July 4, 2008


Glad to hear that Ingrid Betancourt and the longest held American hostages have been rescued by the Colombian government.

Eye Candy 4th of July

Everything a small town, rural farming community 4th of July should have... blue sky, wheat fields, crop duster stunts, lots of flags, happy little kids, draft horses, the vintage fire truck from "No Cow Ranch," a pie tasting contest and sparklers in the pasture. Enjoy!








Thursday, July 3, 2008

Herb Garden

Herb Garden

Since we aren't moving this summer, I finally had the chance to start the herb garden of my dreams. Today I picked out some rosemary, lavender, oregano, basil, parsley, cilantro, sage, chives and mint. It is amazing how many varieties there are, and then there are many different colors and flavors of each kind. I passed on the pineapple mint for now, but couldn't resist the chocolate mint. Could you?

This the first time I've ever gardened and I'm so excited! I got all my little plants home and started potting them this evening. As I handled them I enjoyed their different fragrances. I am sure looking forward to fresh mint in my ice tea...

I am researching as I go, and I'm learning all sorts of things. I've already discovered that I may not get much out of the cilantro. It apparently has a very limited life, and it flowers as soon as its roots reach 75 F. However our weather has been holding mostly in the 60's, so maybe I can get it to grow enough to harvest some for salsa before it gives up.

Oh, and right now my camera is temporarily unavailable, so the photos above are the product of another round of flickr cruising. There are actually fewer herb pictures than I thought (considering the number of say, cupcake pictures), so once I do get the camera back I'll have to try for some cute herb garden shots. And with that cliff-hanging promise I will sign off...

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

What Happened to June?

Yesterday we rolled back into town after our annual trek to the Utah/Arizona desert. As I downloaded pictures I realized that it had been almost a month since I had done anything with the blog. It has been a combination of lack of morning sunshine (rendering my normal indoor blog photo shoot site unusable), a lack knitting production (oh the things I've swatched... and abandoned!) and, you know, life... (I tend to try to keep my musing on politics and personal decisions mostly to myself... see #11 below). So, just a fun little meme before I rush back off into my busy summer schedule (house guests and birthday parties and conferences, oh my!). I've been wanting to do this meme but I didn't know how to make a mosaic... so thanks to notanartist whose version of this meme finally gave me the helpful link I needed.

Photo Meme
1. Torino FC -Brugge 2-1 fallo su Rosina, 2. bread, 3. A corner...., 4. Damp II, 5. Deflating / Desinflando, 6. Fresca, 7. View from the Cashel, 8. black forest, 9. Homemaker House Wife Perfect little woman!, 10. Church Spire, 11. introvert, 12. mom and baby

Want to play too?
a. Type your answer to each of the questions below into Flickr Search.
b. Using only the first page, pick an image.
c. Copy and paste each of the URLs for the images into fd’s mosaic maker.

1. What is your first name?
2. What is your favorite food?
3. What high school did you go to?
4. What is your favorite color?
5. Who is your celebrity crush? (hint, my answer... "no one")
6. Favorite drink?
7. Dream vacation?
8. Favorite dessert?
9. What do you want to be when you grow up?
10. What do you love most in life?
11. One word to describe you.
12. Your Flickr name.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

And now for something completely different...

Hope you're having a great weekend. I thought I would mention that I just started a new blog that will focus on my bumbling attempts to train for my first Sprint distance triathlon - 500 meter (.3 mile) swim, 20 kilometer bike (12.4 mi), 5 km (3.1 mi) run. Regularly scheduled crafting posts will continue here. Ciao!

Friday, May 30, 2008

Photo Friday: Wheat

Summer Preview and A Case of Indecision

(A blurry Icarus... how 'bout some sunshine?)

Although the weather hasn’t been much like summer around here (at least not the sort of summer I’m used to) all of a sudden it’s about to be June! This summer I am looking forward to a big birthday party for my mom, a visit from my grandparents and several chances to visit with and/or go camping with my in-laws. We are also still planning our “official” vacation – usually 10 days of car camping in the Utah/Arizona desert. And can I also say that I am really looking forward to NOT moving this summer? Here’s to the thought of spending more than a year in the same home. Really, change can be invigoration and exciting, but after three moves and three job changes in three years I’m ready for a rest.

I know the blog has been quiet lately, in part that is because the long term project knitting bug has bitten me, and I’m a s-l-o-w knitter. I have worked pretty steadily on my mom’s birthday shawl the past couple of months. I still need to finish it up, but I am now seriously considering what I want to knit myself to wear for her party. As I mentioned, I have a dress picked out and some matching yarn. I'm trying to figure out what sort of wrap/shrug/shawl looks best. Here’s a glimpse into my current dilemma decision making process:

Swiss Cheese Scarf
Pros: The circle motif would be fun to carry from the dress into the wrap. I have plenty of yardage. Several people have knit this in a similar weight cotton and worked out some tips for tightening up the loose stitches (thank you Ravelry!).
Cons: I’m swatching right now and the constant casting on is making me crazy! Crazy! Cotton is difficult because it lacks the flexibility (and fuzziness) of wool that helps everything even up. A wrap this color and style will also be less likely to get used with anything but the dress.

Cloud Bolero
Pros: Can be adjusted to get the right length for good torso coverage. Very cute pattern.
Cons: Will have to readjust for different gauge. Final product will only be worn with dress. No arm coverage (after the time in the desert you know I’ll have a funny looking tan). Prefer not to have any extra fabric under my arms.

Ella (triangular version)
Pros: Triangle wrap will have great coverage. I think the straight edge will compliment the style of the dress (as opposed to the points on the Shetland Triangle for instance). I wear triangle shawls fairly frequently.
Cons: I may want a pattern that is a little more open. The cotton yarn is actually pretty heavy and I don’t want to smother in the July heat.

So I think the Cloud Bolero is out of the running for now (though it is in my queue) and I probably want a fairly open triangular shawl pattern. Although my Swiss Cheese swatch may win me over if it blocks well. Any suggestions?

Friday, May 9, 2008

Photo Friday: Red

And now I'm off to make some strawberry freezer jam...

Monday, May 5, 2008

Box Lady

Living far, far from everywhere can make "specialty item" procurement an intensive process. In the last small town I lived in I didn't find it particularly surprising when I couldn't find a book, CD or yarn locally. Since moving here the list of items has only grown... imagine my surprise when I discovered that I would have to drive half an hour to buy ground pork! Naturally this has resulted in a constant flow of boxes to our house. Vacuum tubes, books, capacitors, yarn, fiber and dye of various colors... all our little necessities arrive by mail. This makes checking the PO box one of highlights of my day.

Exhibit A:Today's Haul. The box on the right is the latest installment of Hello Yarn fiber club. The rest is Mr. M's loot.

I think my insistence on walking to the post office both baffles and amuses the ladies that work there. Since I'm a cheapskate, I got the smallest PO box possible, which means I constantly get little slips of paper telling me to come to the counter to pick up all the things that won't fit. The postmaster knows me by name now. They must wonder how my house isn't completely filled up to the brim (I wonder too sometimes).

Sunday, May 4, 2008


I'm in the midst of a blog make-over; please bear with me. I've had some fun revamping the header and next I should probably tidy up my categories... if only I wasn't afraid that blogger will eat all my posts...

Friday, May 2, 2008

Fiber Friday: Locks

Merino/Romney Locks

Some washed Merino X Romney locks. A soft, wonderfully crimped bit of fleece with a blend of chocolate and cinnamon hues. Thank you Desiree!

[A better photo of the lock structure here... *wistful sigh*]

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Back to The Crock-Pot

handdyed locks II

Little handfuls of color have been emerging from my crock-pot recently. For most of the bundles I included some shaggy, coarse Scottish Blackface locks (fun in their own wild way) along with a bit of mohair roving and a handful of Corridale cross roving.

handdyed locks

This fellow proved to be the most photogenic of the lot.

Now this all started because I had a project in mind, but I haven't managed to get even one of the colors I was aiming for. Back to square one... :)

Friday, April 18, 2008

Polka-Dot Party Dress

Just so you know I haven't been slacking, I have cast on for a shawl for my mom. Her request was very specific. For the yarn she wanted a glossy fiber with great drape. Pattern: smaller version of Icarus a la saartjeknits. Color: black. I got some Cotton Viscose yarn from Garnstudio and I think the shawl is going to be gorgeous, but right now the project is not very photogenic... as I'm sure anyone else who has ever tried to photograph an half-knit, unblocked, high gloss, dark colored shawl could attest.

Like any other knitter in the midst of a project, I've got the next project on my mind. Since I'm hoping to have my mom's shawl done for her birthday, I also have her birthday party on my mind. Last summer I got the cutest little dress when I was out shopping with her...

I'm not a real fan of strapless dresses, although this one fits me well. Who could resist the red dots though? When we got it I also got a cropped white jacket to go over top, but it's heavy enough that it probably won't be really comfortable to wear in July. What I need is a wrap. Wait, this is why I'm a knitter right?

The handywoman's secret weapon: yarn.
I even have stash yarn that happens to match AND I got that yarn from the destash long before I ever got the dress. I know, it scares me too...

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

The Bluebird of Happiness

I recently won a drawing over at Paula's blog and I couldn't resist purchasing a few other goodies from her shop... so the most lovely package arrived yesterday!

I have some plans for these decor items that I am going to unveil later, so only one picture for today. If you haven't already, why not surf on over to Paula's blog. Recently she has been working on a set of beach inspired paintings which I find fresh and beautiful. Living here on a peninsula sticking out into the Pacific Ocean I see a lot of beachy kitsch, so I appreciate a thoughtful interpretation of the beauty of the shore...