Monday, November 20, 2006

Is it only Monday?

It feels like it's Tuesday, for some reason, and I was really bummed to realize that it was only Monday. Somehow I thought Monday had passed me by while I wasn't looking, I guess. Hmmm... even though it's supposed to be a short week, I'm thinking it might be long.

I hope everyone is watching news of the TomKat 2.5 million dollar wedding ceremony of the year. My big question is: How did the wedding photos show Katie just slightly shorter than Tom, when in actuality she's taller? Hmmm.... I guess height matters after all, esp when your image is on the line. Well, if you didn't catch the scoop on the wedding tonight or last night, it looks like the tv stations are airing a two hour special several nights this week, so you don't have to miss out on all of the fun! :)

We have finally gotten the green light to post photos of the test knit of Sundara's wonderful new sweater pattern, the "Tatami" Kimono, shown here. This sweater was great fun to knit and is such a lovely pattern. The yarn is what really makes it, though! Sundara rocks! Here are a couple of photos:

I also recieved some extra special yarn from Sundara this week - Black over hot pink worsted merino - it's so soft and just stunning (my photo does not do it justice, however, you can check out a better photo here):

I've also finished the bag for my mom and love how it came out. It's so cute with the flower - it adds just that extra special something:

I've started some additional knitting projects - something not so mainstream. I found this adorable pattern in the holiday 2006 Vogue Knitting Knit Simple magazine for a bird mobile. It was super simple, and the birds are extremely cute.

More posting soon......

Happy Thanksgiving all!

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

wham, bam, and thank you, ma'am

amazingly, holiday knitting actually continues. i have completed another project, this for s's sister. i am so pleased with this scarf, and surprised i am so into scarves again. with a more evolved knitting-skill-set comes more exciting scarves, i guess, and with a cold neck comes the desire for soft warm neck coverings for me and for those i love. so here i am, for the first time since the multidirectional scarf fever of '05, becoming once again obsessed with scarves.

i have been thinking about the first scarf i made for s, out of lion's brand homespun (he still totally hearts it), and how it was just straight-up garter stitch, on BIG needles. i then made him one of the aforementioned multidirectional scarves, out of noro silk garden (of course!) and have plans for another. i received some knitpicks panache, which is tre soft and oh-so-loverly, in a color surprisingly similar to this debbie bliss, and one look at that next to my baby's eyes, and i knew it was destined for him. i am thinking cables, maybe sharfik or the shifting sands scarf (okay, so i heart grumperina, who cares?!?!?!) or maybe a cabled scarf of my own design.

this project i finished on sunday is a coming-around-full-circle-type of thang. years ago, when i first began knitting, when i first started stalking the yarn stores in town, when i first discovered what a fabulous resource the internet was for knitting, i ran across the dna-cable scarf. wowza. what a scarf, i thought. i NEED TO HAVE THAT. so, i ran out and bought the yummiest softest most wonderfulest yarn i could afford, debbie bliss cashmerino, in a teal-y dusty blue, ooh, baby, and i casted on. and, i did okay. not perfectly, but, for a first cabling attempt, i did okay.

see? a little bumpy, but not HORRIBLE for a first cable project

but then i got sick of it, not so much the yarn or the pattern, but sick of the concentration it took, and sick of KNOWING, even as i continued to knit, that i had definitely f'd up at the very very beginning and i absolutely NEEDED to frog it all and restart, but, gosh, i sure as heck didn't want to do that. so i put it down, and it got buried amongst the many other projects i had abandoned, and i found myself, about a month ago, pulling it out and looking at it once again. i knew that scarves and socks were going to be my big xmas gifts this year, and i had just re-started midwest moonlight, knowing that my dear sweet sil was going to be getting it (she lives in the midwest, get it???), and i thought - gosh, this yarn is way too fab to go to waste. i am gonna make up a scarf pattern for it. i hauled out all of my scarf, lace, shawl, and pattern books, and began pouring through them. i kept coming back to the traveling vine pattern in one of the many shawl books i have accumulated through the years, fumbled my way through a few fits and starts, and a week later, viola!

talk about yummy. and finished. and blocking.


traveling vine-lace-patterned scarf (still trying to come up with a name for it)

yarn: debblie bliss cashmerino, teal-y blue, 3.5 balls

needles: addi turbo #8s, smooth as silk

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

The holidays are upon us....

Yes, it's that time of year. The holidays seem to be popping up here and there, and we all seem to be working on holiday projects. I've been super busy this week in jury duty, however, I have gotten in a little knitting from time to time (on breaks and lunches). I'm busily (not sure if that's a word, it just feels right) working on holiday projects, trying to get all of my Christmas gifts knitted that I told myself I wanted to commit to. I am making a little headway, and you can see progress photos below; however, I first want to comment on the package I received from Sundara this week. I contacted her awhile back, asking if she would be willing to dye some yarn for me in the Lakeside colorway. Since returning from Ireland a couple of months ago, and falling in love with the little town of by the name of Kinsale, Ireland (and a little guesthouse we stayed at there called The Bank House) I decided I really needed and was yearning to make the Kinsale sweater (you can see it here on Wendyknits) which is in Alice Starmore's "Fishermen's Sweaters". Here is the yarn I received from Sundara in the Lakeside colorway:

Isn't it completely and utterly stunning?

I also recieved some really studly handsome looking yarn that I had ordered from Sundara while back, that she had been planning to ship with the Lakeside yarn, it's called Dungaree, and WOW oh WOW is it stunning also. I call it studly and handsome, only bc I am using it for knitting my husband some wonderful socks:

Now, here are my Christmas project progress pics:

Felted bag for my mom: This is almost complete - I will include a full on shot of this bag once I have completed the flower that attaches to the bag. Without it, this bag is not complete, but almost...I want to make the flower completely stunning and something unique to fit the bag, so it will be showing up soon!

Next on the list, a poncho for my 6 year old neice. She has been literally begging for one for the last year, so I decided I just need to make one for her and her sister. This is the first of those. It's the "Simple and Elegant Poncho" pattern from Abundant Yarn and Dyeworks in Portland, Oregon. I am using Sissi Mohair and Fiesta cording, as shown below:

Last, but not least, on my list of projects that I'm working on for the holidays (these are not all of the projects, just the ones I've gotten around to starting), are the holiday KAL socks for the WHY blog. I'm using the RPM pattern with Jingle Bell Rock STR. I Heart them very much!

Tuesday, November 07, 2006


that's me. little miss on-the-ball, lady johnny-on-the-spot, senorita preparada.

yeah, right.

i can hardly believe it myself, but holiday knitting has begun. some has even been completed. i have made a list, i have checked it twice, and there's still time to find out who is naughty and who is nice. i finished two holiday gifts this weekend, which really sets me ahead of the curve. i don't mean to brag or anything, but i think i'm going to reach my holiday knitting goal.

may i present, mizz midwest moonlight, for my newest sister, t:

she is from scarf style, crafted from knit picks elegance on the most beautiful rosewood straight #7s. (her true color is closer to the one on top - lilac is the colorway). i really really heart her. she blocked gorgeously, and is very long (about 70 incheds) and wide (at least 12 inches) and comfy and soft, and, oh, do i really have to give her away???

i also finished a pair of sock hop socks, in the hard day's night colorway, which are pretty freaking cool, too.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Democracy Gone Wilde

Lately my husband and I have just left our telephone ringer permanently off. The reason? Auto-dial political campaign calls. These are a plague. I heard on the news that Oregon's republican gubernatorial candidate tried to make a few campaign calls in person, only to have people hang up on him assuming it was a recording. I hope one of them was me. The last straw was when I found a mistake last night in my cabling several inches back in the yoke of the Eris cardigan sweater that I am knitting for my mom. I choose to blame a distracted moment reaching for the phone to answer a phone call from a machine. What other explanation could there be?

Anyway, I heard the most wonderful satire of crazed political advertising today on American Public Media's show Marketplace. I heart it. Take a listen...

Friday, November 03, 2006

Rocktober Socktoberfest comes to a close...or does it?

Socktoberfest 2006 is officially over...or is it??? We here at WHY have had a blast of a time with our own little KAL celebrating, what else? The Sock!!! We all finished our socks during Soctoberfest and had a grand time during our final photoshoot (Great photos S!) (we missed you Julie!)!

This KAL was the embodiment of our earlier post that told of our different histories and approaches to sock knitting. For this KAL we all used the same yarn, STR "Rocktober" medium weight. Some of us toe-upped, some cuff-downed. Traditional short rows vs. short rows with mini gussets vs. short rows with mini heel flaps. 2 x 1 Ribs. Cable ribs. Moss stitch cuffs. Yarn overs. Ribs embossed with leaves. I think most of us were magic looping....but I won't bet my first born cat on that!! We had horizontal stripes, we had vertical stripes, we had double back waves of color. We had picot edges, or not. Our socks are as individual as we are. We heart that.

The days are shorter and darker now. The skies are gray and we've had an onslaught of infamous Oregon rain. The leaves are curling...browning...and falling to the ground. We are into November now. This month doesn't lend itself to a catchy name like Socktoberfest...but nonetheless...the celebration goes on...Socktoberfest was such a hit here in the zip code of WHY, that we are launching our next round of sock knitting goodness and are embarking on the "Sock the Winter Blues Away" KAL. No rules. No big expectations. Just knitting socks together throughout the holidays and chilly winter months. We began November 1 and will end in February. Most of us are starting off with some holiday themed socks--STR "Jingle Bell Rock", "Christmas Rock" and "Dreidel" seem to have caught the soles of many of us! But, anything long as we're knitting with our friends!!

Thank you for checking up on us during Socktoberfest 2006!!! We hope you had as much fun following our progress as we enjoyed knitting our Rocktober socks!
Please do check back now and again to see how we're keeping the winter blues away!!

Happy Knitting!!

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like....The Day After Halloween!!!!!

It's that time of year - the leaves are turning, the air has a hint of chill in it...the decorations are beginning to be displayed - the oranges and blacks, the witches, the goblins, the scarecrows and carefully carved out pumpkins. The signs of Halloween are all around us ~ and then, all of a sudden, they aren't. I started this post BEFORE Halloween, and now, as I return to finish it, it's the day after Halloween. They actually had their 50% off sale in the little gift store up near where I work, so I know it must be the day after Halloween. The Thanksgiving and fall items are displayed in the window now, preparing us for Thanksgiving next. I just love this time of year.

I arrived home today to a pretty package in the mail - lo and behold, a pink and brown leather bag to hold more of my knitting goodies! It's more fabulous in person than it was online. And, a percentage of the profits will go towards breast cancer research, so it serves a great cause, and a great purpose in my life too! One can never have too many bags! I'm sure you can all relate to that. But wait, didn't I just buy a new bag last week? That's beside the point. A person...esp a knitter, can never have too many bags! That's that.

I also arrived home to some beautiful blooming african violets. I can't believe 2 of them (I have just 3 now) are actually in full bloom. When did this happen? I'm not complaining, just wondering, as it seems they were NOT in bloom at all when I left for work this morning. I must be halucinating. In any case, they are beautiful! I am going to cherish them while they are here and hope that whatever happened last night keeps on happenin!

I've decided to leave my pumpkin decorations out for a month longer - through Thanksgiving. Why not? Pumpkins are for Thanksgiving too, right? Pumpkin pie, yadda yadda yadda. I'm leaving them - part of it is sheer laziness - that I don't want to bring out all of my Thanksgiving decorations, as they're still in boxes from my move 6 months ago, but part of it is that I really love the whole pumpkin theme. There's just something so cozy and warm and comforting about pumpkins, isn't there? It just gives off that "warm fall feeling". Hmmm...maybe there's a song to be had here..."you've got, that warm fall feeling, oh that warm fall feeling, bring back that warm fall feeling...." OK, that's crazy, but whatever. I'm leaving the pumpkins.

The pumpkins are stayin!!!!!!

The pumpkins will not be leaving the building!

Listen to the man, the pumpkins are stayin!

OK, enough. Point taken.

Fall has been, thus far, a season of completing projects. I finally finished the Petrified Wood STR socks for Kevin (and I must say, he's a great, and, I might add, pretty sexy poser):

...decided to pass some projects on to others (as it seemed I would never complete them) - but, I know, this yarn is going to S's loverly home, where it will be knitted with all of the care and compasion and true love it deserves:

....decided to rip out some projects (doesn't this look a little like brain? Yuck!But very fitting for Halloween, I must say):

...and am starting some much needed projects (much needed for the soul, that is)- Holiday WHY KAL socks using Jingle Bell Rock STR:

and a lovely wrap (yarn still to be wound):

STR Sock Club Socks for the month of October:

I'm also finishing up a lovely felted bag for my mom, a baby sweater for my sister's baby (who will be turning 2 in December), a pair of mittens for my MIL, and 2 little bitty ponchos for my neices. Yes, I have too darn much on my plate for Christmas, so what am I doing posting right now? I need to get on the stick and start knitting some of these projects!

I will just leave you with this. Yesterday I found this lovely little guy outside on my porch. Looks like he was having a grand time feasting on lots of helpless and unsuspecting insects. Doesn't this photo just give you the eebie jeebies and make you shake all over??? Yuck! If that isn't enough, check out the next one that's a more closeup photo! I know that having spiders around is supposed to be a good thing, however, I really do not want to share a house or a bed, or anything for that matter, with this guy. I can't believe this large of a spider is actually lurking around my house. Are there more, I wonder? Yuck!