Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Coming clean

A few of my friends have been teasing me about coming clean about all of my purchases of late. My response to them is, "what do you think I am, s*****?" (We're not allowed to use the "s" word in my house.) DH sees all of the receipts anyway, but I don't think it's necessary to flaunt it. So, I give you a sneak peak at the yummy goodness that came into my home this weekend:
This is a yummy tank top pattern that I picked up at the Blue Moon booth. The crappy picture of the pattern does not do this garment justice. They had a lucious model on display in the booth, knit out of their Bambu yarn. The drape of this yarn is incredible! And of course it is hand-dyed in the lucious colorways that only Blue Moon can create. Mine will be knit in the Squash Blossom colorway. What a name. What a color! Angela will be doing a KAL with me once her custom dyed yarn arrives. I tell you, we are spoiled here in the PNW. Does anyone else have this pattern and want to KAL with us? Leave me a comment!

The next lucious find came from a little tent tucked back behind the food booths. A Swell Yarn Shop is a new-ish internet presence with some hot deals on hand-dyed sock yarn. Angela (a different Angela) was a real sweetheart to talk to and shared with me her pattern for contrasting heel and toe socks which you can also find on her blog.
I came home with an 8 oz braid of BFL, and 8 oz braid of merino, and some hand-dyed sock yarn with contrasting color for heels and toes. As Teddy would say, SWeeT!

Just so you know it is not all about the shopping around here, I have been working on plying the <8 oz of Carbon merino tencel. I've been working on this through two evenings of Star Wars (thankfully different episodes) and am still not done. Tonight, I hope, so that I can give Sam her bobbin back!

For the record, I only received one box yesterday, DH received two :-)

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

It's almost that time again

Sockret Pal Starts

The Sockret Pal Swap is starting up - it's a secret pal exchange that lasts for 6 months. One of the things you have to do is knit a pair of socks for your sockret pal. Pal names were just sent out, so pal, if you are reading, here are the answers to my questionaire:

Sock-ret Pal Questionnaire
The basics:
How long have you been knitting?
20 years
Do you consider yourself a beginning sock knitter, an intermediate, or have you been doing this so long you could probably knit a pair in your sleep?sleep, what's that? I've knit many a pair of socks in my lifetime :-)

The measurements:
While your pal may ask for some additional info to ensure a great fit, please provide your shoe size, or any other fitting related info you think is pertinent.

I wear a size 8 shoe, but my feet are wide, not long, so stretchy socks are best.

(fiber related) Favorites:
What colors do you love?
I have yet to find a color that I do not like.
Do you prefer solids or variegated?Either is fine. I am really into tone on tone colors right now.
What fibers do you most love to knit with?Merino, other wools, wool/cotton blends
Who do you consider your favorite yarn vendors?Lisa Souza, Brooklyn Handspun and Blue Moon
What projects (other than socks, of course*S*) do you most enjoy knitting?scarves, shawls, sweaters for my kids

(fiber related) Dislikes:
What fibers can you not stand to knit with? To wear?
nylon, 100% mohair (blends are ok)
What colors would you never wear? yellow, fuschia (but I would wear them on my feet, just not next to my face)

The Tools:
Plastic or Metal? Bamboo or wood?
bamboo or other woods
Circs or Straights?circs
DPNs or Magic Loop?I've done them both
Are there any knitting accessories you don't have in your collection but would like?handmade stitch markers, glass straights

The Extras:
Do you have a wish list? If so, please share the link!
There is a link in the sidebar
Do you like sweet, sour or salty? (or all of the above? *S*)all of the above
Do you have any allergies your pal should know about? (Certain foods, smoke, pet hair, etc)I have a nickel allergy which makes knitting with metal needles impossible
Favorite scents? Scents you can't stand?I like light, citrusy scents, and holiday scents such as pine needles, gingerbread, candy canes, etc
Do you collect anything (other than yarn and knitting toys of course)?fiber, sheepy knick knacks
When is your birthday? (month and day is fine!) December 3rd
Do you spin? Dye your own yarn?yes, I spin. I have dyed my own yarn a few times but I am no color artist
Your favorite author/band/vacation spot, anything you think will help your pal know you better...I like to read historical fiction, and have most recently completed the Outlander series.

Monday, September 25, 2006

OFFF and the world's best husband

I had only casually mentioned to DH that OFFF was this weekend, and how nice it would be to go. And then I went away on a business trip. He was a single parent for a week, which included parent/teacher curriculum night and a Cub Scout meeting. Never in my wildest dreams did I actually think he would remember let alone agree to driving down to Oregon this weekend.

Proof that we were there:

Thanks, Barb, for the photo. They actually all look like they were having a good time! I have more photos to share, but they are on the computer at home.

I left the socializing to DH and the kids while I shopped. DM (Dear Mom) has a birthday in a few days and I needed something special to send her way! The Blue Moon booth was my first stop. It was crowded as usual. I stocked up on some socks that rock as well as made my first purchase of Bambu. They had a beautiful tank top modeled so I bought the pattern and the yarn. It is so super soft and drapey, I hope to have it knit up before next summer!

Then on to Sheila's booth for an orifice hook to go with my new Betty Roberts spinning wheel. Mine is similar to the #4 on the page. It's so yummy and gorgeous!

I'll have to fill you in on photos later, but suffice it to say that I stocked up on size 1 US dpn to knit all of the sock yarn that I purchased :-) I only got a little bit of fiber this year. Not like everyone else I know who bought the fleece right off the sheep or heck, just brought the fiber source home!

Thanks, hubby, for the company and being the best driver ever. And thanks to the kids who were for the most part well-behaved despite the fact that their Dad made them eat lamb for lunch and there was no cotton candy - anywhere.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Another group

There's a new button in the side bar. I came across a link to the German Socken Kreativ Liste on someone's blog, and had to sign up right away. There are some awesome sock patterns on this group! It seems like every Fall when I gear up for heavy duty knitting weather, I sign up for one or two German knitting groups, determined to brush up on my language skills. This time, I actually introduced myself, in German. We'll see if they laugh me out of the group.

I've been on a business trip this week, and the knitting project du jour is the My So Called Scarf for the ISE. I'm almost done with the first skein, which is about a third of the way complete. They are getting their first snow of the season up in the mountains of Colorado. The local news showed kids at the Breckenridge ski resort making a snowman. Adorable.

I'm not sure if I will be making it to OFFF this year. I would really like to go, but I haven't seen my family all week and there may need to be some compromise. We'll see.

The good news is that I did have the opportunity to visit a LYS, Shuttles, Spindles and Skeins. I got a few goodies for myself and a sheep tic-tac-toe set for the kids. Cute! Photos next week, I think.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Orchid update - day 20

The orchid looks exactly like it did on day 10. Amazing.

We have green

You may recall how excited we all were to have 6 yellow beans in our harvest. Today, we finally harvested some green beans.

They immediately turned into mustaches.
Now why you would put a bean on your upper lip is beyond me.

I must not have the creative gene. Which is why I follow patterns, even for something as simple as a scarf. So many of you asked about the pattern from yesterday's photo. It's the My So Called Scarf pattern. Mel, I tried to make a bigger photo, but the yarn is so reflective with the camera flash that the pattern just did not show. I think the stitch pattern shows well on the scarf in the link. The yarn I am using is a worsted weight wool/mohair blend. The pattern calls for Manos, which IMO is thicker than worsted, so I should have known to cast on more stitches. I think the concensus is to make a wider scarf. I'm gonna ask the recipient and see if she wants long and narrow, or long and wide.

Another scarf pattern I am considering is diagonal lace scarf from Midnight Purls. I think it will look good in a variegated yarn. What do you think?

Anonymous (Mom, is that you?) asked if those were Sheila's needles. All I can say, in my best Minnesotan, is "you betcha!"

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

It's all about the scarf

I signed up for the International Scarf Exchange 3 last month, and earlier this month received my match. My match lives in a colder climate than I, and she prefers rich, fall colors. Lucky me, I found some lovely yarn in the stash hand-dyed by Persimmon Tree Farm that I had picked up at this year's Maryland Sheep and Wool festival. I am also using a stitch pattern whose name I do not know, but has been circulating the web as a free Manos pattern. See how nice it is all coming together:

The only concern I have is that the scarf does not look very wide. It's about 4 inches. I may rip it out and cast on with more stitches.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Drive by blogging

We all have those weeks, sometimes even months, when life seems to be on the fast track and it is all we can do to keep up.

New job .... good.
New commute ... getting old fast.
New knitting content ... uninspiring.

I've been test knitting this sock pattern for a friend. The pattern is AWESOME! But the colors I chose to use (from stash), not so awesome together. I love each colorway individually, but together, not so much. So last night I ripped it back to the short row toe and am reknitting the sock in one color. I'm liking it better already.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Day 10

Still alive and BLOOMING!