Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Real Yarn, Truly ~

You might want to sit down for this.... I was glad that I was sitting while I was plying, as when I peaked at the bobbin, my "lucky zebra" bobbin, I saw Real Yarn. Yes....seriously, there it was on my zebra bobbin...R-E-A-L Y-A-R-N just like real spinners make!Doesn't this look lovely? Doesn't this look consistent and smooth? Can you see that the thick pieces are much the minimum.....not the overpowering maximum in previous yarn attempts....Yes, you get another picture of this bobbin, as I can't stop dancing a happy dance for my Real Yarn! I can't wait to check how many yards I have so I can cast on!!!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Plying time ~

I have spun all the Dancing Leaf roving this holiday weekend, and it looks pretty good to me! Since the great lesson from Sam, at my favorite knitting shop Serial Knitters, I am spinning more evenly consistent, plus not breaking the ply as it draws into the bobbin.I'm so very proud of my progress, as I've been practicing as often as I can. As my 13 year old said today, "It seems like just yesterday you were dropping that spindle on the floor!" Well said.. So, I put together my Katie-a-go-go, just as Sam taught me, and started to ply this lovely fiber...So far so good!!! How exciting!!!!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Moebius Mishap ~

I mentioned yesterday that my first moebius was not as expected, and I ripped it out. Sad as I was over this moebius mishap, I realized with a *gasp* that I needed to rip out my lovely Koigu Destiny too, as I'd cast on the same amount of stitches for this lovely moebius. Thankfully, I had an inspiration before ripping out the koigu, and I counted how many stitches I I thought I'd cast on 200 in that wonderfully magical way taught by Cat Bordhi. Well, another surprise for me, as there were a total of 360 stitches on the Koigu Destiny needles. This means that when I thought I was supposed to count the "up" and the "down" motion in Cat's cast on, this was an error.Using this knowledge, I cast on (again) the Rio yarn and the Koigu, and using the cast on count I used before, I cast on "only 50" to see what would happen. After the first knitted round on each, I counted stitches and had 200 on idea what happened, other than it must be that magic that Cat talks about...

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Half Marathon Stars ~

Here are the four stars of our local half marathon!Hurrah!! Hurrah!! Hurrah!! Hurrah!!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Cat's Moebius ~

Perhaps this is meant to be a learning experience. I'm sure that's it... When I cast off my first moebius in the wee hours of Thanksgiving, the many many "almost 200 stitches" of the glorious first moebius......I had quite a surprise.Big....really big......super deluxe big...twice as big as the hand knit one we bought at our church bazaar a few weeks ago....Perhaps if my cat was Cat Bordhi (although I do love our cat, but she's not much of a knitter) she would have warned me not to cast on almost 200 stitches...soooooo, I guess I need to rip back and cast on only 100 this time....*sigh*

Friday, November 25, 2011

Beautiful Koigu ~

While spending most of Thanksgiving day being thankful with family, I was able to knit a bit on the lovely Koigu Destiny moebius.It is lovely to knit and lovely to watch it grow!!!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Koigu Destiny ~

Thanksgiving Riddle: What do you get when you find Koigu in the most luscious deep green, and then find Lantern Moon Rosewood "Destiny"needles in a size 9, 40 inch....less than 1/2 price...and these two extra special yarn and needle pieces come together on the night before Thanksgiving holiday, marking several days away from work....Answer: Cast on another moebius to celebrate the conversion of holiday, Koigu and Destiny... Plus being thankful for my family, my friends, my job, my health, our home, our neighborhood. My best wishes to all of you, and may you spend some of the holiday counting blessings and knitting! I hope you are able to cast on, too!!!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Pocket practicing ~

After the greatest spinning lesson I've had since bringing my wee Pocket Wheel home, I've been spinning on this "Wool Roving: wool from Merino Sheep!" is what the label says. It is from Dancing Leaf Farm and was one of the deals at Sock Summit this year. It had some issues, as it was sort of compressed and mushed, almost looked like it had been a bit felted... so I took it to my great spinning teacher and she started to pull and fluff and put air back into the roving, until it looked much better.The roving still shreds a bit, and probably isn't the best for a beginner to work with...but I keep thinking it is good to practice with, since I love the colors....pictured below with one of our pumpkins.I get a little better each time I practice, and hope that soon I'll feel like I'm a bit farther along than "beginner status" but for now I'm happy to be spinning away!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Real swatching ~

I have to admit that I'm pleased with my first yarn spun and plyed from my wee Pocket Wheel. After soaking and drying, then measuring how much I have from that first sample, I have 65 yards of Almost Real Yarn. Not sure what can be knit with just 65 yards, the Jitteryknitter said that fingerless gloves would be a good project. She said I should swatch to see what size needles, since my Almost yarn is still thick and thin....(but lovely, don't you think so?)So, using her size 4 needles, I am knitting a swatch...and this Almost yarn is behaving a lot like real yarn (imagine that!) and I'm having fun with this wee swatch!Not sure if 65 yards will be I have to find the pattern she was using for those fingerless gloves, as I can't recall how many to cast on....such fun!!!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Mum's Christmas Socks ~

When the gentle rhythm of K1 P1 of the Peaceful Shawl puts me to sleep, or at least yawning so much my eyes begin to water, I need to put down that project and pick up mum's Christmas Socks. I'm at the gusset, knitting two at a time and toe-up, as I always do.Again wondering if these can be completed and sent to Michigan before Christmas....

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Peaceful Knitting ~

I write that title, I must say the knitting on mum's alpaca shawl may be peaceful, but I can't help wonder if I can get it knitted, blocked and on its way to mum before Christmas. Why does Christmas seem to come earlier each year?I added the third (and last) skein of yarn last night, so I hope I'm on the last big slog...If it was any other month but November or December I'd really be loving all this alpaca growing so lovely with my Signature needles...

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

More Moebius ~

Knitting on the moebius has been very interesting. Although the needles are 40 inches long, they are in a double-curl-of-the-moebius shape so it feels more like knitting a hat. Well, except there are almost 200 stitches in one round.It looks good and the yarn colors are blending well. I can imagine that this moebius knitting could become addictive....I'll let you know once I've cast off....

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Almost Real Yarn ~

I had the greatest spinning lesson on Sunday at my favorite yarn store, Serial Knitters. I had my great teacher all to myself and was able to ask many many questions and get lots of tips and techniques on how better to spin with my Pocket Wheel. I also learned to ply using my newest spinning gadget, the Katie-a-go-go which is a traveling "lazy Kate" and it worked like a charm!Here is my first attempt at plying my first attempted singles with my Pocket Wheel. Look, this almost looks like Real Yarn!!! Way to go!!! (very very exciting!!!)

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Library Love ~

I am blessed by being part of the best library system in the world, well perhaps in the U.S.A. but I'd bet our library would be a contender for a Class A World Rating! After waiting patiently, these two books showed up "on hold" for me just before this holiday weekend.There is so much inspiration in these two books, it could tilt the world of an unsuspecting knitter. However, being a fan of Clara Parkes from 'way back, plus following Wendy Knits for many years as well, I fully expected my world to tilt a little, once I had these books in my hands. BE WARNED, they will both pull you into the delightful vortex of patterns, techniques, yarn and the yen to cast on some lovelies....

Friday, November 11, 2011

Veterans' Day thanks ~

I would like to take today to thank my dad for his service to our country in WWII. I called him today to thank him again, as I call him every year on Veterans' Day and Memorial Day to thank him. I call him and mum many other times in the year, of course, but I always call dad on these special days of remembrance.I can't imagine what it would have been like to be shipped across the world to fight in a strange place, with service people I've just met. All of us fighting a terrible force that defies the human values that we have been raised with. All of us missing home, fighting a terrible terrible menace that caused such heartache in the world.Thanks dad, for fighting for us, and for future generations. (I love these pics from 1965 & 67!!)

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Moebius first ~

I may be the only knitter on earth that has not done the famous Cat Bordhi moebius cast on. I checked out the beginning of the youtube video (only the beginning as I was interrupted several times by a multitude of teenagers...perhaps there were only two teenagers, but they are busy busy busy and it seemed like more than two....). I did the cast on Sunday night, and waited until Monday afternoon to knit that first row.The cast on and first row are a bit awkward, but I do hope that I've done both correctly... stay tuned...P.S. Love this yarn, as it is another from the $10 bin at Sock Summit 2009 - Rio de la Plata sock yarn

Monday, November 7, 2011

Eggnog and Alpaca ~

Ahhhh, the season's first eggnog latte.....yummy yummy for all knitters. So I was able to knit on mum's alpaca shawl with the leaves, and enjoyed this very yummy drink. (can you see the leaves?)Did I mention this alpaca is very yummy as well? Plus these Signature Needles make all projects yummy!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Bitten again by Jitterbug ~

Do you have a certain yarn that you can't resist? (silly question, eh?!!) No matter where to see it, you have an almost visceral need to have it in your stash. Most of the time, there is some of that yarn on your needles, in a wonderful project that gives you such joy.... plus you have several finished objects in that yarn, yet you never tire of knitting with it.Jitterbug is that yarn for me....but not the "new" colors that are tonal and muted...oh, no...too tame... it is the older, vintage colorways that I love (Jitteryknitter is now shaking her head and saying, "no, no no!"). The colors just sing with happy sunshine, and the twist is the most excellent I've ever knit with - tight and even....oh, I do love this yarn!!Lucky for me, I found another skein of that vintage Jitterbug...just when #2 daughter had asked me to cast on my last of this Popsicle colorway....Isn't it so lovely?

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Cast on Koigu ~

Here is another cast on from Sock Summit 2011. Although I should be knitting on my Christmas projects, I was feeling very frustrated since I wasn't finding any time for knitting, so I decided I needed to cast on some socks. Even as I write that last sentence, I know it doesn't make any sense at all. Wouldn't I be farther with my Christmas knitting if I kept knitting on it, even if I only have a few minutes? Well, perhaps.........however.......casting on feels so good, like a battery recharger for the knitting soul....Plus I kept wondering what this yarn would look like in knitted fabric....the lady buying some next to me at Sock Summit says it looks great and polka dotted, so there is that mystery solving piece going on here, too...When number #1 daughter saw them (she knows they are for her, as she "called dibbs" on the yarn when it came back from Sock Summit) she said, "Oh, Yea! I can't wait to have a new pair of your knitted socks!"