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Welcome to my blog. It's good to have you here. I hope you'll enjoy reading about my writing and knitting exploits.

Monday, August 8, 2011

More UFOs

As I sit here and write out my list of things to pack for the big family beach trip coming up at the end of the week, I have to think about what projects to take with me.  And as I do that, I study my Ravelry pages of 13 UFOs (unfinished objects).   Yowser!!!  Not sure at all yet which projects will accompany me yet.  It may end up being an eenie, meanie, minie, moe kind of thing.

Today I wanted to show you pictures on 3 of my favorite (okay, they're ALL my favorites) projects. 

The first is Hillflowers, and stunningly gorgeous Anne Hanson Knitspot pattern. 

I am much farther along than this picture show and the pattern has a really great rhythm as you knit.  The yarn is my favorite yarn - Bugga! by the Sanguine Gryphon - in the Dragonfly Tattoo colorway.

photo courtesy of the SG

As you can see my project photos do not do the yarn justice.  It is a beautiful, subtle colorway with hints of pinks, purples, yellows and greens all very muted.  This yarn is so soft and so drapeable.   And it blocks like a dream.  I'll be sure to post some blocking pictures when I get to that stage.  The Sanguine Gryphon shop has some tempting yarns.  I might have quite a few in my stash.  Like it said, it is my favorite yarn.  And Gryphon is a dear. 

So my Hillflowers stands a really great chance of making into the beach bag.  I can talk and knit while I work on this one. 

Project #2 is Potager another Knitspot design.  This one is is done is Madelinetosh Tosh sock yarn in the Chambray colorway.

This is my first project using nupps.  I've tried several methods of knitting the nupps and I haven't found one that I like better than the other (or easier than the other).  This is a design that I use the chart a lot for instead of the printed directions.  After I knit on it awhile I find I get into a unique rhythm of the pattern and it moves right along.  But I also find that I have to be quiet and think when I'm knitting this or I'll miss a yarn over and be ripping out a row or more.  So as much as I love this project, I don't think it's a good beach project.  Maybe I'll set September aside to finish this one up.

In fact, I love Potager so much, I have two (count 'em two) Potagers on the needles. 

This second one is done in The Woolen Rabbit Pandora, another wonderful yarn that is soft and squishy.  The colorway is Sweetheart, which was featured in the pattern release.  I love the color.   But sadly I am not much further along than this picture shows.

Now I know you're wondering why I have two Potagers in progress. Well, it's like this.  I couldn't find the first one and I was anxious to work the pattern - so I cast on a 2nd one and got this far (those darn nupps again). Put it aside and finally Potager Project 1 (say that five times fast) resurfaced as things tend to do around here.  I felt guilty about neglecting the first one and started in on that one again.  Now I may have "misplaced" the Sweetheart Potager.  It's not lost - just in hiding for a bit.  And I will get it done.  Maybe I'll put both Potagers on my September to remember Potager list.  Get 'er done!

And now we come to the sadly neglected 3rd project - Cluaranach.   Mine is made out of Sweet Georgia yarns tough love sock in the Boysenberry colorway.  This is quite a tight twist yarn and it took a bit for me to get used to knitting with it since I'm used to softer yarns.  Not that Sweet Georgia isn't soft, it is.  But the tight twist makes it seem not as soft as you're kniting with it. 

This project has been OTNs for over a year.  Yes, another casualty of misplacing the yarn and pattern in this baker's dozen of projects.  I found it again briefly in May of this year and saw the purl through the back loops and only worked a few rows before wondering if I was doing the stitch correctly.

Then Anne Hanson popped into Richmond, Virginia, for a class and she showed me how to easily do the stitch.  As usual, I was making it way too hard.  I really want to find this project (and I think I know where it is) and get it completed.  So I'm prioritizing this as the October to finish project.  And since I'm telling the world about it, maybe I'll keep myself to this schedule.  It truly isn't a difficult pattern once you master the one stitch.  The rest is easy. 

photo courtesy of AgnesTville

Now I wish I could take credit for this Cluraranach.  This is AgnesTville's magnificient project (and finished, I might add).  You can really see the pattern in her picture.  Agnes is one of the most prolific and talented knitters that I know.  I am in awe of her knitting.  I'm hoping my finished object will be half as lovely as Agnes' Cluraranach.

Next time, I'll focus on 3 more lonely UFOs.  And hopefully I'll have made some progress on something.


Thursday, August 4, 2011

Projects, We have projects

Projects - boy, do I have projects going on.  Unfinished.  I have officially declared myself the Queen of Casting On. 

Earlier this summer I'd made a small committment to myself to limit what I had on the needles at any one time.  But that didn't last long.  I am hopelessly drawn to new projects.  And I guess I think I'm Super Knitter and can get it all done.  Well, I do - eventually.

Take a look at this work in progress (WIP).  It's a Striped Study Shawl

It's a very easy shawl done with short rows.  I love how the purple yarn defines the stripes and the variegated yarn plays off of the purple with softer shades of lavendar, pink and pale green.  Both yarns are Colinette Jitterbug in the colorways Velvet Bilberry (the purple) and Marble (the variegated).  

I use this as my mindless knitting project, because it is so simple.  I'm hoping to take this on vacation to the beach and finish it up, if I haven't finished it before then.

Next up in the actively working on it projects is Leaving, a gorgeous sweater pattern by Anne Hanson of Knitspot fame.  If you aren't familiar with Anne's patterns, I urge you to go visit her website immediately.  I became hooked on her patterns several years ago.  She is a genius at design.  So many of my projects are Knitspot patterns. 

These pictures are of the Leaving sleeves.  The yarn used is The Woolen Rabbit Opulence in Arabian Nights, a luscious fingering weight yarn.  I've now completed both sleeves, the back and the left front.  All I have left is the right front.  Piece of cake, righ?  Well, theoretically.  But see, I still have a ton of other projectst that all scream to be heard and worked on. 

Like this Ondule sweater - also a Knitspot pattern.   The yarn used in this is Knitting Notions Classic Merino Superwash in a bluish-purpley yarn.  Super soft and warm, a true joy to knit with. 

Now this isn't a particularly good picture.  You can't see the wonderful texture of the pattern.    I have completely finished knitting this sweater - well all except for the neckband, I believe.  But I have to steam block it and seam it up. 

This is no longer a problem, because I have taken a blocking class from Anne and I've successfully seamed another sweater.   So what I my problem?  It's the unrelenting summer heatwave.  I just cannot make myself block with steam when it is over 100 degrees outside. So this project is on hold until after the heat dies down and the autumn winds and cooler temperatures come my way.

But the way I look at it, I'll have 2 wonderful sweaters to wear this winter - Leaving and Ondule.

Now these are only three of the thirteen projects I currently have going.  Yes, thirteen.  And chomping at the bit to cast on for something else.

I'll share 3 more projects in progress in my next post.  But before I close out, I wanted you to see what seduced my knitter's mind this week.  Yes, I caved and joined the Mystery Shawl KAL on the WestKnits group on Ravelry.

And since I'm late to the party and don't have enough stash yarn (so wrong, I'm drowning in yarn), I ordered some beautiful blues from Purl Soho in New York City.  The yarn I chose is Madelinetosh Tosh Merino Light.  Here are the 3 colors I'm planning on using.

Colors are Betty Draper Blues, Well Water and Denim.  Love, love, love these colors.  Hope they'll work well together since I'm kind of going in the dark here.  I've never done a mystery shawl before.  But how can I go wrong with these three blues? 

Tomorrow the yarn is supposed to arrive.  YAY.  I'm behind already since the first clue came out Monday, August 1st.  But I've checked out what I have to knit for the first clue and I think I'll be able to catch up.  Now to stay focused on this over the month of August.  I'll keep you posted.

Until next time,