Thursday, March 30, 2006

Flotsom and jetsom

Here is the bag I felted. Turns out my mystery yarn didn't felt very well so it took about half a dozen trips throught the washer and dryer before it shrunk to a reasonable size. Pretty, though.

I started some new socks using yarn that my hubby got me the first Christmas we were dating, about two months after we met. I knew then he was a keeper! I had never knit socks before and knit one malformed beast that didn't fit whatsoever and had laid aside the yarn ever since. But now it's back in the limelight where it deserves to be, with a little zig zag pattern I found in A Treasury of Knitting Patterns.

Finally, I'm about 1/3 done with my Rogue sleeves. All the cabling is done, so now it's just lots of stocking stitch.

I should mention a very not kniterly project I started on this weekend that will inevitably slow all of the aforementioned... The man was out of town so I stripped all the layers of wallpaper and paint off our bedroom down to the plaster and ripped off all the trim in order to strip it. So there's a little left to do on that...

Accidents Will Happen

The other day, I accidentally mosied on over to the Yarn Harlot's blog, and I accidentally read her review of Mason-Dixon Knitting, the new book by Ann and Kay of, coincidentally,, and I accidentally went to Powell's, the main one, the big kahuna on Burnside (after accidentally finding myself walking into Knit-Purl AND Josephine's Dry Goods and accidentally exercising my consumerly rights at each), and I accidentally purchased said book (the clincher was the fact that it was on sale. Yes, ladies, this book is 30% off at Powell's, because it is one of their "featured titles.")

(An aside: In the last few weeks, I have discovered something about myself. I am an addict. I am addicted to books. I have known this for a while - s. and I had a traveling job for a year, that took us all over the country, and we found ourselves purchasing a staggering amount of books. In case you didn't know, I am a huge reader. Love reading. Perfect world? read and knit all the live-long day. But, I am almost crippingly addicted to knitting books. I see one, a new one, one I have read about, and I NEED TO HAVE IT. Even if I never make a pattern from it. The beautiful thing about knitting books is that I can look through them, read and re-read sections, look at patterns, carry the books around with me for months and months and never tire of them).

Then, last night, knowing all of the projects I already have on the needles, and, in the back of my mind, knowing, KNOWING, that I should cast on some Rogue-sleeves, I accidentally wound the Rainforest Jasper STR Sock Club yarn,

and THEN I accidentally casted on two toes in said yarn,

while watching Deal or No Deal (so simple, yet so addictive, although, personally, I think Howie Mandell peaked with Walk Like a Man).

I also accidentally did not begin Rogue sleeves (oh, E, you are gonna kill me, aren't you?); I accidentally did not work on my aunt's socks; I accidentally did not do my Jaywalker heels; I accidentally did not take the SSP (super secret project) off of the bed it is blocking on; I accidentally did not work on SSP2; I accidentally did not put the laundry in, I accidentally did not wash the kitchen floor, I accidentally did not call my brother to see how his wedding plans are coming along...tonight, I shall try to live more purposefully.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Symmetry is a wonderfully splendid thing!

Symmetry is a wonderfully splendid thing. You know, when something is so beautiful as a result of balance or harmonious arrangement. When something is exactly the same on both sides, in fact, mirroring the other. Like a butterfly, each wing just like the other; a deer, each antler exactly mimiking the other antler opposite it; and like the human body, even, where several organs are symmetrical throughout the body, such as eyes, arms, kidneys, legs, feet, etc. Like when an object is reflected in water, it is said to have line symmetry along the water line. Symmetry exists in architecture everywhere, such as in the famous Taj Mahal, there is a line of symmetry through the center of the structure from top to bottom. Symmetry exists in shapes. Many shapes, in fact, have multiple lines of symmetry. Yes, symmetry is a wonderfully splendid thing...

Like in these Neptunites that I finally finished...

Each side, the exact replica of the other....

Each ridge, having another twin ridge opposite it...

Oh, that symmetry, striking us in places we never knew
it could exist...

Hopefully, if I'm lucky, I will be able to create it again in my lifetime.

One can only dream...

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Cedar Creek SIP

I'm loving the CC socks!! Everytime I get to the turquoise colors my little socky heart just skips a beat!!! To DFGs Tina and Kaci, if you are reading this (and you had better be!) Rainforest Jasper and the Cedar Creek sock pattern are awesome!

Here we are climbing Mt. Finlayson in Friday Harbor, WA.

And on the Ferry going home.

And check this out, two socks, same stitches, same knitter, same yarn, but one is knit from the outer portion of the ball of yarn, and one from the inner....who knew? The right sock I knit mostly on the way home from FH yesterday (outside of the yarn ball) which is why she wasn't photographed in Island time!

Close up of the heel flap and the heel in profile.

And my favorite, that too darn cute picot edge! I.LOVE.PICOT!!!! Dang, I can't wait to start my next pair of socks....can you guess what kind of edge I'm going to use???

And last, but certainly not least, my own DH....Pete!! Hi Pete!!!!

Monday, March 27, 2006

Bloomin' Socks, not bloomin' onions (although, those do sound really good)

I got the book Sensational Knitted Socks a while ago, and have poured over it, carrying it around with me in my bag, keeping it next to the bed, moving it from bookshelf to coffee table to knitting area to bookshelf, but have not yet actually USED it. Until this weekend.

You see, a few weeks ago, I casted (casted?) (is casted truly a word? is it a word we knitters have made up? does it really matter?) on some socks for my dear Aunt B, who is recovering from a bout with melanoma, among other things. Poor dear lost a toe and a half, and has been acclimating to a sort of new reality lately. She lives back in the hometown, and could really use some homemade goodness. Momma is making her a nice big afghan, prompting my sis to float the idea of me making her socks. I immediately began some toes, some really lovely toes, in STR (is there anything else, SERIOUSLY, does anyone else even MAKE sock yarn?!?!) Cobalt Bloom. The toes sat on the needles for a while – I didn’t know what I wanted to do with them, although I did know that I did not want to do Jaywalkers (no offense, Jaywalkers - you have been good to me) or a regular ole ribbing, and stockinette socks, for me, are too tedious to undertake more than once every few months. S’s Tiger Socks were stockinette – sometimes they seem to take longer than a patterned sock. I knew I wanted to do something a bit different, and I grabbed Sensational Knitted Socks and dragged it from room to room with me, searching for the perfect pattern – not so complicated that memorizing it was out of the picture; a stitch pattern that would compliment the beautiful pinks, purples and browns that make up Cobalt Bloom; something that would be just plain fun to knit (think Jaywalker pattern); and something feminine and girly-ish. Guess what? I found it!

The name of the pattern is innocuous enough – the Yarn Over Cable pattern. Sounds okay, if a bit boring, eh? I gotta tell you, this is one gorgeous pattern. Take a look:

Knitting updates for me include:
1. I have finished a VIP (very important project, that I cannot talk about AT ALL, as it is also a VIS (very important secret) that I will try to keep for a few more months. all i can say is, yowza, it turned out to be purty pretty).
2. I have also been coveting, and I do mean COVETING, what the other STR Rockin' Sock Club sock knitters out there, both those in blog-land and those i see on a regular basis, have done with this amazing yarn and gorgeous pattern. Tina is really onto something here with her "scientific experiment" idea: I have seen, in person, three partial pairs of Cedar Creek socks, and each is so completely different than the others, so outstandingly unique, and so fantastically wearable, that I feel the almost overwhelming need to cast on as soon as is humanly possible. Especially after seeing our favorite NeuroKnitter, NK, and her almost-completed pair. Must....cast.....on.......CedarCreeks....
Maybe even before I begin
3. Rogue-sleeves. Not yet alive. 'nuff said.
4. Marbles Jaywalkers continue to amuse the heck outta me. Love them, love the colors, love the slight differences in each sock. I am pulling from both the outside and the center of a center-pull ball, making my signature two-at-once, on two-circulars, and on one sock, there is a very pronounced red color, while on the other, the color is way more muted - never quite leaves the pink side and gets to the red.

And so we live to knit and blog another day, don't we, WeHeartYarn-ers? We do indeed.

Sunday, March 26, 2006

It's about time!

As some of you know, I taught my nephew to knit. He was really into it and wanted to knit a felted bag like mine. So, for Christmas (2004) I bought him yarn and needles and gave him directions for knitting a Booga bag. He knitted and knitted and then gave the bag to me to felt. Well, that was last summer. I can't decide if I'm lazy or busy, but I finally felted it (with Abby's help). She doesn't usually care so much for my knitting, but she sure liked M's bag!

Here it is after I felted it (still wet from the washer). Pretty nice, huh?

My niece (his cousin) also knitted a Booga bag, which I felted today, too. Her bag is smaller, and I think she did a great job with the colors.

Toodaloo, I'm off to plant primroses (as long as it doesn't start raining).

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Ta Da!!

Here I am--the mystery 5th blogger. It took me a few days to sign on and create this post. I'm very happy to be here. I've been knitting with these wonderful ladies for a while now. We always have such a good time. Just for is Snowdrop.

I also want to introduce my little helper, Gracie. She loves to help me knit.

All for to knitting.

Just Fotos

Just a quick update on the yarn scene. Not much to actually say, just lots of wonderful fotos to post!

Thank you first and foremost to my wonderful, and I mean WONDERFUL, SECRET PAL. A lovely package arrived on Monday afternoon, and I was thrilled...overjoyed, really. I can't believe how much stuff was packed into this box, but I'm here to report to you, lots of wonderful fiber goodies! Thank you SECRET PAL! (I also found out she is from New Zealand)....

Then yesterday, arrived another package from my Secret Pal, much to my suprise! Some wonderful Mountain Colors my favorite colors! Needless to say, I feel completely and utterly spoiled. I have the best Secret Pal ever! I mean, just look at the deep colors of this yarn and the glorious texture....

Also, had to post this closeup foto of some yarn I purchased at the Cozy Ewe recently. Just love the variations in the colors....

And I will leave you with this one final thought from my most favorite kitty in the whole world, who can be oh so sweet, but oh so threatening at the same time......



Until next time....wg

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

S.A.B.L.E. Update!!

Dear Friends,
I am overwhelmed. OVER.whelmed. I have so much yarn, I can probably consider myself an S.A.B.L.E. X 3, that would be Stash Acquisition Beyond Life Expectancy X 3!! So, what do I do?? I buy more. Logical, because what if I have 4 lives to live, not 3??? The Spring Fiber Sale was this weekend in Oregon City. My hubby and I anxiously await the arrival of this show as it is the harbinger of the fiber festival season: Black Sheep Gathering in June, Oregon Flock and Fiber Festival in September(check out highlights from 2005 here), and hopefully Yarn in the Barn sometime around October. I am also hopefully, perhaps, maybe, if there is a fiber goddess, going to the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival in May and will be able to have the great joy of seeing my dearest friend Linda, another neuroknitter of sorts, who is lucky enough to live in Baltimore and acquire stash for my 5th life expectancy! Actually, I don't want to buy anything, I just want to spin on a Golding wheel again.

Anyway, back to reality! I purchased two skeins of Alpaca lace weight yarn from Tammy of McKenzie Alpaca Breeders and some Pygora-blend roving and batts from Susan of Rainbow Yarns Northwest. I have never spun with Pygora before, and I loved the colors! Somebody please, remind me to bring my spindle next year! It would've been grand to be able to spin and chat with dear hubby, Alina, Jen & Kevin, and Julie!

Knitting update: I ripped out my Jaywalkers. That's right, two whole socks. They just didn't fit well. I liked the yarn. I didn't like the socks. I ripped. End of story. Thank goodness for murder mysteries on a Sunday afternoon! I re-skeined, washed, and hung the yarn to dry. I'll keep you posted on what it morphs into--no surprise to be sure, but another pair of socks.

I finished one STR 'Marbles' sock, and will start its mate soon (as in tonight!).

And, guess what I finally got to open on Monday morning!!! My STR Sock Club box! Oh happy day!! To make a long story short, my box was being held captive in the bowels of the local post office from Saturday when it arrived until Monday morning. This was because the local post office is in Scappoose, OR and isn't open on Saturdays. However, they do put mail in your box until 10:30-ish a.m., but you are only allowed to retrieve packages until 8:30 a.m. They are very clear, and very strict about this time line. So, it is quite cruel that they put notices in your box after you have been there at 8:30 a.m.!! Don't you think??? Anyway, I have my beautiful yarn, my notebook, my pattern, and all my cool goodies, so I'm happy. More than happy. Ecstatic. Check it out....Max and Keeley approve!!! As if!!

Look what else was waiting for me at the Post Office....dang PO!! These are two skeins of "Harvest" sock yarn from Sundara. Awesomely soft!! My photo doesn't do justice to the rich autumn hues seen in this colorway. Yum!

I'll leave you with another shot of this really cool tea flower that our friend Alina gave Pete. You add the hot water and it blooms into this stunning floral arrangement! Thanks Alina!!!

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Mixin' and Knittin' and Sittin' on my can

TMI on that whole wedding-dress debacle?  Perhaps, but, ladies, I was PISSED.  Oh, well.  Thanks to everyone who came by to make sure I wasn’t about to jump off the nearest bridge (Portland has quite a few to choose from, FYI).  In all honesty, it was a blessing in disguise, because this woman was not capable of doing what she had promised, and the dress I found is spectacular.  I put it on and felt instantly gorgeous, like a real bride.

Hee, hee.

And now, let’s move to the wonderful world of knitting, because that is what this blog was made for.  My knitting is actually going well.  I am knee-deep in this super-duper, crazy-secret project that I can’t discuss here. (I’d tell ya, but then I’d have to kill ya, you know how that goes).  Worked on it this weekend, and really did get quite a bit done.  S and I also worked on a mix CD I made for my college friends, who have a big ole mix CD exchange thang goin’ on.  (I sent out 24 copies of the mix, to locations all over the greater US.  This project is HUGE.  HUGE, I tell ya!  If you want to check it out, just swing on over to  2 cool 4 color TV).  S designed the cover and I burned the heck outta some CDs.  I will post the cover in the next few days.  It’s pretty dope, if I do say so myself.  I did some Jaywalkin’, too, and didn’t even get a citation from the authorities.  I have been thinking about this, and hold onto your hats as I make this revelation to ya’ll: this may just be my last pair of Jaywalkers.  Oh, how I love the pattern, the not-so-stockinette-y stockinettedness of it.  The easy complexity.  The sheer quickness of knitting up a Jaywalker sock or two. (or, let’s be honest, 6, and working on making it 8).  Quite loverly.  I have faced the fact, though, that it may be time to move onto something else.  The new Socks that Rock sockclub package arrived, as WG so lovingly shared, and that yarn is beckoning to me.  The colors are fantastic, and my colors, actually (green, brown, ooh, yummy).  The pattern is very beautiful, too, although I am already thinking about how to change it to a toe-up, short-row heel, two-at-a-time kind of thing.  That’s how I like to make socks, dontcha know, and I am not sure I want to go back to the top-down way of socking it to the man at this point in my knitting career.  So, I will have to ponder that.  AFTER finishing my little mystery project, and starting those Rogue sleeves (you go, E, you go. You are truly the inspiration in my rogue life – “you’re the meaning in my life, you’re the inspiration…” name THAT tune).  

WE HEART YARN NEWSFLASH: We here at We Heart Yarn are a fickle bunch, never content to leave well enough alone. Which is why we have invited a 5th member into the mix.  Miz J, a very talented knitter and a hell of a great cook, is joining our ranks in the next few days.  She is a true pleasure to be around, and we all totally heart her to bits and pieces, and cannot wait until it is official (there is still the blood test, the WHY tattoo, and the finger-printing and background check to get through, but we are confident she will pass all tests.  Although, gosh, I forgot about the psychological test.  Not quite sure she will pass that one.  

Ps. She has not yet accepted our gracious invitation to join the ranks, so be prepared for a pretty in-depth smear campaign if she refuses our offer.

Saturday, March 18, 2006


At this point, on a Saturday evening, we are all content.

There's even some snoring involved (not sure if it's coming from the cat or the dog, but needless to say, someone is having sweet dreams!)

I am also content~ but not just content. Happy, overjoyed,, none of these are words I would describe myself as right this second. I guess the appropriate word would be ESTATIC! The STR Rockin Sock Club package arrived today, full of wonderful suprises, including the first pattern of many and some luscious STR yarn (Rainforest Jasper), a binder, keychain, pin, and bumper sticker. I can't tell you how fast I ran back from the mailbox with my package, ready to open it up to discover what was inside! The yarn is beautiful...just beautiful!

Here's a sneak peek of some of the goodies, along with a brief look at the start of the Cedar Creek Socks pattern, designed by Kaci Kyler Hays (more postings on this later):

More rogue sleeves

As promised: photos of the rogue sleeves... or at this point, really just sleeve-lets... or sleeve-nubs... or sleeve-ettes.

I've decided that the perfect place to have the break between the two circular needles is just before the purl stitch in the k2p1k2 border of the cable panel. That way your tension stays nice and even, plus all the increases are on one side together.

I think I've got my increases down now - thanks to Michelle and Shannon and Julie! Most important was to do the ones at the beginning and end of the rows one st in. I do that when I knit flat, but didn't think about it since this was in the round. But it's still important! I've also decided that the best aesthetic result is to do the left slanting increases on inc #1 and 3, so at the beginning of the row and after the cable panel; and the right slanting increases on inc #2 and 4, before the cable panel and at the end of the row. Left slanting I'm doing as pu grandparent loop (loop two below one on needle) then ktbl. Right slanting I'm doing as pu parent loop (loop below one on needle), twist (counter clockwise) and knit. You told me to put my obsessiveness to good use for you, S!

And thanks as always to my photo assistant...