Monday, February 27, 2006

And They Call It A Vacation Week???

What a week! School vacation week started with a sick little girl - some sort of stomach virus which we both got. Between that and not having much planned, it was a difficult time. Of course even if we had had plans, the little one wanted to lie on the couch and watch tv. For a 6 year old who is usually running around practicing gymnastics, you know there is something wrong when that happens. We started to get back to normal by the end of the week. I can honestly say that I am glad that school is back in session and I am back at work on my regular schedule. All in all, last week has left me feeling a bit blah which I seem to be having some problems conquering. I was even thinking of putting myself on a yarn diet, but then I saw this. And of course I am still interested in buying the materials for this. But I will admit that my yarn basket overfloweth and I need to do something about that!

March is red and pink month for Project Spectrum and I am finishing up my card for the postcard swap. Having a little girl who loves pink - well, there is an abundance of that color scheme in papers, yarns, beads and various other crafty items in my house. My first knitting project will be to finish up the Malabrigo top down child's sweater that was put aside for the Knitting Olympics. After that, well, there are some socks that can be worked on, a Mac and Me Winter Bandana pattern, mittens, ... I'm sure I'll find something! By the way, the provisional cast on seems to have worked great for my second hat. Last night I knit the lining to the hat - I was one stitch short in the hem, but couldn't find any dropped stitch - should I be worried?

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Northward Ho!

We traveled north this past weekend, to Portland Maine for the New England Textile Art's annual SPA weekend. It really was a special time - being surrounded by people that have the same interests that I do. I bet you can imagine the smile on my face when I walked into a hotel with spinning wheels set up all over the lobby. Then of course there was the vendor room which was full of fibery goodness and where my 6 year old was able to try spinning on one of The Merlin Tree's Hitchhiker wheels. Thank you to Kathy and David for taking the time to help her. And to top it off, there was the gallery room where people gathered together spinning, laughing and sharing. I was finally able to meet Carole and Cate who also introduced me to Sharon, Jackie, Holly, Wendy, Stephanie and others whom I apologize to for not remembering names. It was all quite overwhelming. Thank you so much for making me feel welcome! There was also a wonderful fashion show where we saw many beautiful things and afterwards Stephanie gave a talk. A very funny and entertaining talk.

The morning that we left for Maine, I was able to finish my Knitting Olympics project. I am very happy with this hat and am especially glad that I finished it since it was bitterly cold in Maine. Of course, that was just outside since inside the hotel it was all warm and cosy! And I actually got to shake hands with the mistress of ceremonies herself and show her my finished object. How cool is that! I am in love with 2 colored knitting - who would have thought. And now I wonder why I was so hesitant to try it again. I have already started another hat but this time I am going with a provisional cast-on.

This should make for a neater finish when the hem gets attached. And I am even thinking about making Ingeborg. I must have missed this link that Cara provided, but Risa was "kind" enough to provide it again. I will probably change the colors since black is not really my color - maybe a dark brown instead?

Monday, February 13, 2006

I've Been Tagged!

Before I invite my guests into my home, I'd like to answer a comment that was left on my last post. Blogger comments don't always provide enough information for me to email someone who leaves a comment (or even visit their blog so I can comment there). So I will reply to Angie here and hopefully she will come back to visit and read the answer.

Angie said...
I love the sweater. What pattern/yarn is it? Also, the Odessa, I'll have to try that.

Angie, the pattern for the sweater is Moriah's Wildflower Sweater from Green Mountain Spinnery and the yarn is their Mountain Mohair. The pattern is very straight forward and easy to memorize.

So, now my guests, please come in. Sandy tagged me for my first ever meme so I took some pictures over the weekend. Between the Knitting Olympics and making Valentines and cookies for my daughter's Valentines party at school, cleaning up was NOT accomplished. But, the coffee pot is brewing and the cookies are made.

Maybe we can sit at the dining room table.

Or maybe not. There seem to be an abundance of mice masquerading as Valentines. But they do have some yummy chocolates attaches to their tails so that slows them down a bit and makes them easier to catch.Oh, there is a free chair if anyone would like to sit down and spin for a bit. I've often thought that this is a very unsociable place for me to spin. I'm pretty much facing a corner but I have windows to look out and the chair is the perfect height. I like it.

Well, maybe we will try out the living room where I like to knit while watching tv. There is a comfy recliner or the couch. Take your pick. We are currently watching The Parent Trap although the Olympics will be coming on also.

Actually one of my favorite places to knit is in bed and there is a huge pile of stuff sitting in the corner. Yarn, needles, projects, books, patterns, you know the stuff. The Walmart bag contains a Barbie doll that my daughter was given for her birthday. Not to get into any heavy discussions here, but I try to avoid shopping at Walmart if I can help it.

Well, I hope you have enjoyed your visit. Please come back anytime. I forgot to take pictures of my fair isle hat. I am really enjoying this - of course, I am only working with two colors so it's not making me too crazy. I do wish I had someone close by who could take a look and let me know if the floats are loose enough. I am getting gauge and the hat seems like it will fit, but the material with the fair isle work does not seem to be lying as flat as stockinette does. So, I'm wondering if my floats are pulling? Or maybe this will be solved with blocking? Any thoughts on this? I will be bringing this hat up to SPA and maybe someone there who has more fair isle experience than I do can take a look at it. Meanwhile I am having fun with it and wondering why I was so nervous to get back into fair isle knitting.

Thanks again to Sandy for tagging me for this meme. It's nice to be asked. Oh, and I guess I'm supposed to tag someone. Most people have probably done this, but I'll tag Risa. So, Risa, if you see this and if you haven't done this yet, consider yourself tagged.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

On Your Mark, Get Set

Ok, the events are about to begin and my needles and yarn are ready to go. Here is my equipment for Ufserud:

Can't wait for 2PM tomorrow - cast-on time! Someone asked me why I don't just start earlier - "no one would know", they said. But I would know and besides there is a certain thrill in knowing that over 3,000 people are doing the same thing at the same time. Also, it's just NOT the Olympic way - no cheating!! I finally went and picked up my Fair Isle button.

I promised some pictures of certain finished items. My sweater - without buttons so I put a pin on the top instead.

The sweater fits well - the neckline is a little large, but if I keep it buttoned or pinned, it's fine. I went and bought the buttons I mentioned earlier - ceramic buttons with raised leaves printed on top. Next there is Odessa - a wonderful pattern.

And I agree with Claudia - there must be something about this pattern because it is very addicting. Hmmm... just like Jaywalker for some other people. OK Kathy, what's in your patterns that we can't stop with just one??? And the thing is that I don't even wear hats, but I've already threaded beads for a second Odessa. Which will have to be put on hold what with the Knitting Olympics coming and all.

Sunday, February 05, 2006


Knitter In Training. Although I'm not sure I have been training correctly. I'm planning on making the Ufserud hat for the Knitting Olympics. One of my goals for this year was to work on my fair-isle technique. I have done some internet surfing and have determined that I should be floating instead of weaving since I have had problems with my woven color showing through to the front in my past attempts. And I have swatched. But I have not been as through with my training as this fellow athlete. She has been diligently practicing her fairisle in preparation for the big event. Way to go, Risa.

Oh, I have been knitting. Keeping those fingers nimble. I have been knitting with beads on this great hat. The pattern is well written and easy to follow. The only bummer so far has been finding a knot in the yarn. As anyone knows that has knit with beads - a knot is not a good thing. The beads wouldn't slide over it so I had to transfer the beads to the new strand using my dental floss thingy. Now I'm keeping my fingers crossed that there are no more knots. Besides the hat, I have been Jaywalking and working on the Child's Top Down Pullover. I'll try to have pictures soon.

I have reservations at the Doubletree for the SPA weekend. Of course, if I go, it will be with a 6 year old whose main interest at this point is the p-o-o-l. So I won't be able to spend a whole lot of time with fellow spinners and knitters. Is anyone else going?

Thursday, February 02, 2006

My Secret Pal Rocks!

This secret pal stuff is great. There was a package waiting for me when I came home yesterday and when I opened it up this is what I found.

440 yards of fingering weight 100% merino dyed in wonderful shades of greens and golds. The label gives a website which I'll check out later - There was also a nice note from Marie, the owner. I LOVE IT!! It's beautiful and exactly what I would have picked out for myself. Thank you so much, Secret Pal. You know what I like! Now the only problem is convincing myself that I need to be patient and not cast on right away. Maybe I should save this for the Project Spectrum month that works with greens. But I don't know if I can wait that long.

This morning I was able to block my Moriah's Wildflower Cardigan. Here it is laid out in all it's glory.

I think I'm going to like this sweater. It looks like it will fit - which is always an issue when I make a sweater for myself. I saw the perfect buttons but put off spending the $30 some odd dollars until I was sure the sweater would fit and I would like it.

Well, I'm off to wait for the roofer and the plumber - oh, the joys of home ownership!