Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Charybdis Blocking Storm

Finished my shawl... but not without teeth gnashing, nail biting, and several shout-outs to fellow Ravelry Charybdis knitters.  Everyone assured me it would be all right!
But first, the bind off:
To bind off, this very neat edging was created.  Five stitches and turn, five stitches back for 2 stitches bound off.  It took several sessions, including knit nite.
Then to the end, and the scary part:  Dropping two stitches along each end.
The six middle stitches get kitchenered together 3x3 to form the point of the shawl.  Then the unraveling:
It looks a mess, and is meant to be a picot-type edging.  But not without a little help...
One hundred zillion loops first pinned with my 20 pins, then transferred to blocking wires, painfully teased out of wherever they tried to hide.  I ignored the inner circle edge--it has loops, too, but I was tired positive that they would disappear when I wrapped it around me after much hard work.
Next... drying... modeling...

Sunday, February 24, 2013


Knitters unite!   I say, Knitters.... Do you check gauge?  Let me show you something.
Same blanket pattern, same Comfort yarn, the yellow was knitted with one size larger needles.  Can you see a difference?  If not, click on it and look again.  The rectangles in yellow are smaller, significantly smaller.  Two different knitters.  The gauge is WAAY different.  I'm a believer!

 Granny Koo loves Mochi yummy yarn.  Where's the purple?
 Great socks, two-at-a-time, just before I gave her bad news about Jitterbug sock yarn.

 And progress on the camisole.  No ripping back this time!

Thursday, February 21, 2013

More Socks

Finish one, Start two!  That's my motto...
Not that I don't have other socks on needles, but there's too little time, and too many socks to knit!
To my credit, I picked up one that has been staring at me for a year or so from its little clear plastic jar, and decided that the stripes would make an easy/mindless project.
As soon as I knitted a few inches I turned it into an intermediate/look-at-what-you're-doing project.
Why? Because I couldn't bear a short-row heel.  I've made this heel from the "Spring Thaw Sock" pattern by Cat Bordhi, and I like it.  It's always a challenge because I never have the exact number of stitches, but somehow I muddle through.  I like the texture of the tbl ribbing (through back loop 1x1 ribbing) and they are super stretchy.  Not bad for Heart and Sole yarn by Red Heart!
Number two is somewhat to my credit because I'm using stash yarn:  Noro Sock yarn.  I guess my feet were cold, and I was wearing two pair of socks that day, which made me think I needed to knit something heavier.
Using a US4/3.5mm needle, and pattern from Sharlene Schurch called Shirred Ribbing.  Yes, this will have a short-row heel.  AND lots of orange.  That nasty orange is hidden in the ball and on a previous project I found it excessive so I cut out the long portions of orange.  Now I will incorporate the orange, and make it orange heavy.  May as well go overboard with a color I'm not crazy about... Hope that works out!
By the way, Nancy Coats turns 80 today!!  Happy birthday to an amazing mental and physical athlete!  (She doesn't knit.)

Friday, February 15, 2013

"What's this?!!"

One of my favorite phrases, so my knitter friends say... "What's this?"  Usually interpreted to mean, "I found a mistake," and not a happy surprise.
Last night I finished up my Stricken socks.  Though they've been on needles since July doesn't mean that I haven't loved the anticipation of putting them on my feet... The Berroco Ultra Alpaca and twisty lines of the pattern have been a joy to work with.  And I didn't need to use a cable needle to twist the stitches so it moved right along if there weren't other projects in the way.  
As I neared the toe of the first sock, I discovered that I was running out of yarn, so I started number two with some vague idea of finding another yarn for the toe.  When I actually ran out I found a suitable partner:  DROPS Alpaca Silk in a non-threatening shade. (By the way, the silky texture made me run for my cable needle!) THEN my fingers flew because it's SOOOO yummy soft that I wanted my toes in it immediately!
Last night, finished, put them on, my toes wriggling in Alpaca luxury, took pictures, almost wore them to bed, then I thought I would give them a little rest and pulled them off.  Just as I put them down something caught my eye... What's THIS???
 A funny little dimple above the gusset...
Dang... dropped stitch.  (It's a bit depressing to find how many times I've labeled a post "dropped stitch", isn't it?)
A minor set back. They ARE lovely though....

Pattern:  Stricken by Cookie A  from Knit. Sock. Love.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Guest Visit

I have friends!  At least, I would like to believe I have friends.  And many of those friends are friends who I don't see for years and years.  It's one of those hazards that goes with "wanderlust".  I really don't mean to leave friends behind, although some have taken it as a personal offense that I pack up and move...  Others are happy where they are and understand our motivation to move away, try something new.  (Almost everyone I know remembers I knit... that moves with me!)
In December I heard from my friend, who I first met in the early 70's, and didn't see for many years.  For real, we hadn't met up between 1986 and 2006!  But somehow, we share a past, and that makes us friends.  (My daughter rolls her eyes when I insist I have friends who I haven't seen in 20 or more years. I can't help that I live in the remote Southwest, and others live in England, France, Norway, New Zealand... It isn't so convenient, but fun to catch up!)
So, Dibble wrote her usual holiday greeting and mentioned that she was going to California to visit her sister, and I jumped on it!  Soon we had tickets and arrangements, and that's what I was doing this past week.
We went to the Chuska mountains:

To the hot springs in Durango:
 To Aztec Ruins:

And many places between.
Attention knitters!
We must make a trip to Kirtland...  100% wool in beautiful skeins, sold for weaving, at the Foutz Trading Post.  $18 per pound.  Lots of colors!!

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Can't Weave ALL the time!

Meanwhile, I've been knitting my shawl in my cotton "wolle" with the g-r-a-d-u-a---l color changes.  At first, or until two days ago, I thought I might not have enough shawl to get as far as the peach color, but now I've started a second ball, and am working back to the darker color.

Yes, it started at the right point, and I'm not sure how it will end!

Pattern: Charybdis by Kerry Milani from Creative Knitting, July 2012

Yarn: Color Changing Cotton 100 gr by Wolle's Yarn Creations Fingering / 4 ply
100% Cotton 480 yards / 100 grams
And what about THIS cutie!?!  No comment necessary...:)

Monday, February 4, 2013

Super Weekend

Sometimes I wonder...
Why do I have a loom?  Why has it been freighted from Norway to New York... 26 years ago?  Why has it lived in a trailer behind my house in New Mexico for 20 years?  What has stopped me from putting it together and weaving something?
The answer to these questions is clear, now.  It's a LOT OF WORK!
True, I bought this loom in 1979, and I have a notebook that says my last project was January 1983.
 Here I am... my Norwegian long hair...

True, it has lived in a box, a falling apart box, in a trailer (down by the river) for 2 decades.  Only a year and half ago did I feel it should be removed, and placed in a plastic container in the shed.  So close to the house... I would have to walk around it from time to time, enticing me, and then...
My daughter requested a blanket/throw and knowing I would be pretty unhappy knitting a monstrous project, I thought about the loom.
Now, you might think that I trotted right out there and brought it in the house, as I usually do when my daughter requests something (that I want to do/make anyway) but I didn't.  She "hinted" at the blanket project last June. But the thought of putting it together, and learning how to set it up, warping and all that... instructions detailed in Norwegian... It took until two days ago to wake up and make the trip out to the shed.
So it started:
Saturday:  It looked like this, and though I had a diagram of the loom, there's a stand in there, too.  And no instructions.

Something interesting:  Yarn still on the shuttle, which matches the blanket on my sofa!

 Hours later, with the help of a screwdriver and my hub:
Look! The same warp as my blanket, removed 30 years ago.  In great condition, i.e. no moth damage. It's an omen!
 Hours later, with the help of my hub, I separated the warp into two sections, and I have half wrapped on the back boom.
 I found that my back was aching from reaching over and threading yarn, so at the halfway point, I went to the sofa and resumed knitting... wondering how crazy I could be.
 The next day, I finished the setup.
And I rested.
For about half hour...while I considered what I was going to do.  I don't really have a plan, just some practice, and then...?

This warp was originally doubled so that my blanket became twice the width (90 cm).  I now have a doubled fabric that is 40 cm times 2.  It's difficult to know what's happening to the bottom layer, but I'm hoping it will match!
I'll weave until it's done, then start again.
Crazy woman.

Friday, February 1, 2013

For Those Grandmas

I want to direct you to a blog post.  Alas, in Norwegian, but a brief translation would be:  "What to knit for your "teddy bear" grandson, when he's no longer a little kid."

Hope you enjoy! Here, or for more click in the sidebar under Muffins Verden.


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