Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Clapotis Ferry ~

Going on a short vacation, and started out with a ferry boat ride. Since we were re-routed due to the normal ferry terminal being under repair, our ferry ride was longer than usual. So I was able to knit a few rows on the Clapotis....bonus!! I'm hoping to get a lot of Clapotis knitting done this vacation!

Monday, March 28, 2011

Annika is lucky ~

Remember Annika? She's Sawyer's sister. Remember Sawyer? He's lucky to have a sweetie sister, and also lucky to have Grandma Marion that knits for him here and here.

Annika is very lucky too ~ check out this beautiful sweater and hat knit by Grandma Marion! Lucky kiddo!!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Clapotis and Red Wings ~

Hockey Night in Canada is a wonderful event. So rarely do we get the TV station to watch, but we did this weekend. Saturday night watching Toronto vs Detroit ~ I love this combination.

Knitting through the power plays at Hockey Town. Dropping stitches while the puck is moving like lightning.
Perfect ending - Detroit 4, Toronto 2. Love those Red Wings!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

We have notches ~

My man found the perfect tool to add notches to these little spindles. His first idea was, "How about putting them through the table saw?" to which I said, "How about I use your electric turkey carving knife?" Perhaps we needed middle ground.....

He used a file that he uses to sharpen his chain saw teeth.... and it seems to have worked fine. Can you see the notch, now, where the fiber is coming off the spindle top, and then passing by the notch to the bottom of the shaft? Now I just need to see if the notches help my spinning... stay tuned!!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Tools to Practice ~

When I started knitting hats, I kept finding new yarn and new patterns to try. I couldn't knit those hats fast enough, so I started getting more Size 9 16 inch circular needles. As I look in my Bass Pro Extreme Worm Binder, I laugh each time I see how many Size 9 16 inch circular needles I have....what was I thinking back then? How long would it have taken to finish one hat before starting another one? (I see you nodding your head...right?) Well, a similar phenomenon is happening as I learn to spin. As I look at the silk I am spinning, and how much more there is to spin, I'm antsy to try to spin something else too....sort of like startitis of spinning, perhaps....

So I found these spindles on eBay (plus the squarish yarn gauge) however they do not have a notch on them....and that surprised me, as I've only spun with notched spindles. They make it easier for me to stop and start...... so I started to spin this black alpaca with silk.....ooooooooooooh, so soft.....
also started to spin this 50/50 merino and tencel (Rain City Fiber Arts) that I just purchased at our favorite local yarn shop, Serial Knitters.....this fiber is ooooooooooh, so soft as well... you detect a softness pattern here? Hey, did someone say, "pattern" - Is it a shawl???

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Tea and Clapotis ~

Getting some knitting time while the kids are at their activities. Working on the sweet and shiny Clapotis for mum. I've dropped my first two stitches and it still feels like bad Karma to see it dropping and running....and I keep thinking, "The pattern says so...." yet it still feels so odd...

I'm hoping to have it done as a Mother's Day gift in May.... can I get it done by then?

Monday, March 21, 2011

Amazing Silk ~

I'm still enchanted by spinning this silk. The colors are amazing, and I'm able to let the drop spindle "spin" while I'm drafting some of the time.

Sometimes I even get the grist (thickness of the ply) small enough too. Check out all these colors!

I'm wondering how this will be to ply....into 2 ply (get it, to ply into 2 ply.....clever, eh???)

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Yarn Score ~

As I was knitting on mum's clapotis out of the delicious metallic rayon yarn, I had a sudden "Ah HA!" moment!

I started digging in my stash to find the bargain yarn I'd found just a month ago at the "Good Cheer" thrift store on our gal's weekend.

Amazing that this cone of metallic rayon cost $3.00....and the skein for the clapotis was $47.00. Pretty amazing deal, eh? The yarn is a little thinner, so my needle size will need to be smaller for this yarn. Good deal that my mum is worth the good stuff!!!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Easter Egg Season ~

I wanted to share this picture, to show what a little sunshine does for our ladies in the coup. It looks like Easter is coming early this year!
P.S. We are thinking about getting another group of chicks this year for Earth Day....they are so cute, and fun... and love those fresh eggs!

Friday, March 18, 2011

No Vim this year ~

March Madness has already turned into March Sadness for Michigan State fans. After a major "come from behind" we made it sooooooo close, but lost by 2 points. Tom Izzo (from Northern Michigan University) is still the greatest coach!

How sad to be out of the tournament already. I usually get so much knitting and sweetie time during March Madness!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

oooooh, shiny ~

I haven't cast on anything metallic since the fun fur scarf days. I must say that casting on shiny metallic yarn is rather enjoyable, especially without the fun fur part! One can really see the yarn without the fur. So, I have cast on my Mum's Clapotis scarf.

I'm using size 5 needles as the yarn calls for 5s or 6s, and I want a tighter knit so the dropped stitches of the Clapotis are held with firm bookend stitches. So far, so good, and not slippery stitches yet. I'll keep you posted....

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Smooth as Silk ~

After all the fun I had spinning and plying my first single of the Lornas Laces Rainbow, there was still 15 minutes I asked my teacher if silk is difficult to spin. I received two beautiful hanks of tussah silk from Susan's Kitchen for Christmas from Marion, and it is so lovely!

In 15 minutes, this is what I started, with some good direction from our great teacher! I love my spinning lessons!

I'm hoping this will be a lovely shawl once I've spun and plyed it!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Which Rainbow ~

Sweet friend, the JitteryKnitter, found some Lornas Laces Rainbow super wash merino roving for me to practice my spinning. Since I loved-loved-loved the Lornas Laces Rainbow yarn she was using on the lovely shawl that ended up as my Christmas gift. When she found the Rainbow roving, she also gave me the rest of the Rainbow yarn and laughed that perhaps I could spin it to look just like the yarn....

Well, in spinning class this week, our wonderful teacher helped me figure out what I was doing wrong, as I couldn't ply my singles. She said that super wash is very slippery and I needed to give my singles more twist that I'd used with other I was back in business, but not quite back to my "getting better every time" spinning self...but not too bad, really....

As it really looks like yarn, doesn't it! Can you tell which one is my spinning...or is it memorex? :)

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Sweet Jazz and Tea ~

After a 'way too busy' week of no knitting, I was finally able to spend some quality time with my Sweet Jazz shawl. This is the one that begins by casting on 300 stitches, so knitting one row seems to take awhile, and the purl back is painfully slow. However.... I am loving this yarn and the colors are stunning.

As I was sitting in my favorite yarn shop, knitting away, I heard the ladies at the front table knitting and talking about "Nightmare Jazz" and how could it be so hard...and I tip toed up to the front and asked, "Please tell me you're not talking about the Sweet Jazz shawl being a nightmare?" Alas, they said that once one starts "knitting the gaps" there is some very tricky and fiddley bits to work through...but, good news is that they are at the shop to help me if I stumble...

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Expo Treasures ~

I found a few great treasures at the Sew Expo. From Roberta's store, Fibers Etc, I found this beautiful rayon metallic yarn to make my mum a clapotis scarf. There was a lovely sample there, and I think I can attempt the clapotis again!

The next treasure is merino & silk fiber from Carolina Homespun. I was so glad that they were at the Sew Expo - it was their first year, plus Morgaine taught a beginning drop spindle class (that I took!) to 4 different classes. I hope they come again next year! I fell in love with these pastel shades mixed in the creamy white... I can't wait to see how this spins!

I also found some merino & silk fiber from Vogue wholesale.
this is the same fiber that I've seen from Webs. I can't wait to spin this!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Meliae done ~

Also accomplished during Sewing Expo weekend, Ta Da! As soon as I arrived home, I took out the blocking boards and set to work.

Yes, I finished the knitting on the Meliae, out of the gorgeous Baroness colorway by Hazel Knits. Oh-so-lovely yarn, and I loved knitting every stitch!

A little scary was nearing the end of the shawl I was running very low on yarn, and ended up with a teeny tiny ball - perhaps one yard in length...enough to make me panic about perhaps needing an intervention with Annelie at my favorite yarn store! I'm glad that I can go into the store with good news of a finished project, instead of a problem!!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Knitting Squared ~

At the Sew Expo this weekend, I took a class with one of my favorite Sew Expo teachers from Fiber Ect yarn store in Tacoma. In years past we learned this and this...

Roberta taught us Knitting Squared, diagonal knitting, and it was a lot of fun. I've tried this before and have no trouble with the first square, but adding the second square never made sense to me....
so it was great to have a teacher and time to practice! Hurrah!!!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Tea with The Baroness ~

The Baroness is proving to be a lovely companion. She is interesting and lovely, and is able to be a part of discussions and stories.

I can take her everywhere and my friends love her. So I've even taken her out for some tea and a bit of knitting.... lovely lady, that Baroness!

My camera still can't agree on her colors, other than they are stunning no matter what available light is used. The lace pattern on the side is so beautiful, and my 15 year old thinks it looks very complex! Perhaps she is thinking that her mum is getting to be quite a good knitter....(or, perhaps not....)

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Meliae wings ~

I'm enjoying the knitting on Meliae, as I can socialize and even listen to podcasts while knitting this. While knitting the Brandywine, I wasn't able to listen to anything (except my own counting!) so it is good to catch up on my favorite podcasts!

My camera can't get a true color shot of this lovely yarn - the Baroness colorway is a stunning set of purples. I'm so excited to be finally knitting with Hazel Knits!