Monday, January 29, 2007


I sent an email to the Yahoo Group about a new contest but wanted to post it here as well.


An entry into the prize drawing for anyone who posts UFO progress with photos on THIS blog between now and Valentine's Day :) The progress reports need to be something from your list so if you haven't posted your list yet, get busy and post it on the List Blog ~ then get yourself back here and post your progress. be eligible for the drawing you have to:

~ Have posted a list on the List Blog

~ Post progress on something from your list with photos on THIS BLOG

~ BONUS ~ If you post an FO from your list with photos of YOU with your FO between now and Valentine's Day you get a double entry in the drawing. I wanna see your funny little mugs!

You'll have your choice of either custom hand-dyed fiber or custom hand-dyed, hand-spun yarn if you win :) I choose the fiber, but you get to give me some colorway suggestions (hence, "custom") so you won't have to worry about getting bright orange yarn/fiber if orange makes you hurl

READY ~ SET ~ GO !!!!

What am I...a snail????

Ha! While I *feel* like I'm getting somewhere, I'm hard-pressed to show any progress. Sheesh! I'm a tad lost with what to do between spinning and knitting and I've made progress with both but...when I went to update my list, it sure as bloody heck didn't take long! Anyway... the scarf at left is the Ripples in My Stash design that I'm meant to be writing up for the website as a free stash-buster idea/pattern. It's bits of left over handspun alpaca and angora that I russian-joined and knit up in the Feather and Fan pattern. Really yummy and it's done but for the writing up (never a favorite thing to do but tomorrow's another day!)

My best friend's earflap hat is done BUT ~ heavy sigh ~ it's a tad big. I used the pattern from Knit Scene Fall 06 and it's meant to be a "tallish" sort of
hat, which is cute but I think it's a bit too tall since she's a pinhead like me. On the positive side, tall is kind of good in the I'm Gonna Felt It A Bit fixer upper process. It's not tight either so I think a tad bit of felting will be fine with this.

Then there are the mittens...oh MY. Now, I adore Norah Gaughn and the mitten pattern is from Knitting Nature, a book I slobber over regularly. The mittens were in Interweave Knits as an excerpt from the book so I went about knitting them up to match the hat. I've never knit mittens before but I know the Target Mittens are an odd type of pattern...knit on straights and then you pick up around the weird opening and knit the "thumb target" as it's called in the pattern. The thumb is wonky and it's either me and my eternal gauge issues or the pattern. I didn't even do as many rounds as the pattern called for and the thumb is like super long. Hmmmm....

I felt really good about these mittens at the phase pictured above with the magazine...they were fitting well, looking cute, fun to knit...YAY ME! Then...I finished them... I mean, lookit that thing that not weird looking???

I could blame it on the fact that they aren't washed and blocked yet but I don't think that's gonna help much. It looks better on my hand but that thumb is still oddly long and bizarre. Oh well...I could have ripped it out but I decided to weave in the ends and make another one and if I hate them still I'll keep them for me (I don't hate them enough to not wear them...c'mon, they're mittens and they won't make me look fat and they're wool, right????) I may have enough of the yarn left to make her a better pair but she's very cool and will probably be OK with them. I may felt them up some, I dunno.

So, my FO's of shame are here for you to see and comment on. It's tough to make that second mitten but I MUST FINISH THEM and move on!

On a lighter note (ahem!) I did six rows on my Sheep Shawl yesterday. Whew...I'm smokin on THAT one...ha! But, if I have a tinking session on that baby, I'm shot for the day. I usually fix what I screwed up and try to end it on a postive plain knit row and tuck it away.

Then, last night I finished up a fleece combing UFO and actually spun, plied and washed the stuff! It's a very wacky hand-dyed Nasty-Part-Of-The-Fleece experiment, which I hope to blog about tomorrow morning. Pretty fun and one small skein of very weird yarn that makes me happy!

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Progress! and oopsie ...

Well, a more interesting title might be "how I didn't meet Stepahnie Pearl-McPhee (Yarn Harlot)". But only if I posted the photo of the Van Eaton APPLE fold'n'tote I was busy buying while she was chatting with people right in front of me. Yep, I could now tell you she was wearing jeans -denims- with pockets on the back, beltloops and no belt (sorry Stephanie!) Not that I was enamored or anything ....

So of course, the buying of this lovely little wheel was accompanied by a slide right OFF the no-fiber wagon into two lovely balls of sock fiber! LOL. Actually, both are superwash merinos. Yummy! Some from Crown Mountain Farms -- the stuff they spin and sell as Sock Hop yarns -- bright orange on white, for "Hang on Sloopy" and some from Blue Moon Fiber Arts -- same colorways as their Socks That Rock yarns -- in "Farmhouse" with maroon, yellow, green and more. So far my little Apple Blossom has taken well to the Sloopy colorway. Maybe this will be my "sock wheel". LOL. I read today wheels need to be used, so I'd best start up a bunch more projects! hehehe.

But this posting is supposed to be about _progress_ so here goes ...

  • finished the first pattern row in the fair isle arm warmer (first warmer). I'm thinking I'll go native on the second arm warmer and find some complementary slip stitch patterns. I can do the two-hands two-color thing, but fair isle just isn't my cup of tea, when it comes right down to it! But I will plug away on this one. It's really pretty, I'll give you that!
  • Made progress on the 3 year old (or older if the fiber "buy" date counts) sock spinning project -- I should finish spinning the singles within a fortnight if I keep making this my evening project. But Apple Blossom is intruding with her sock project, so we will see...
  • Returned to the Jacob tote bag project -- Oregon Tote, I think it's called. Knit, felt, and the handle loops through a hole to hold it closed. I spun up two bobbins, plied them, and then re-plied them to tighten up the loose spots. Still fighting my Schacht's Woolee Winder a bit, have a new oil to test on it.
  • Finished the Tofutsies socks. There's a photo on my blog here.
  • Felted the moebius tote -- just in time for the class tomorrow! LOL.

Hmmm, must go and see if I committed to more items in the List posting ... but that's all that comes to mind for recent accomplishments...

Happy spins,

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Bad Influence.

Why your parents worried about who you hung out with..... Bad influence provided by Silver, courtesy of Leah. I went to the Selfish Sunday Knitters and found this post about the Calorimetry. I didn't want one in the original colours but was certainly inspired.

Dyed, spun, plied, knitted. Wearing.
Off to work on bigger projects.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Clapotis crosses Finish Line.

It was a race folks, in the grand tradition of watching cars going many, many, many times around the track. It came out of the starting gate well, slid through the increase sections, bogged down ala Knittyd and The City in the straightaway, and scampered to an exciting conclusion after the decreases. It is finished. Okay, it wasn't fast, it wasn't priority but it is done. I blocked it, but think I preferred it unblocked so perhaps I shall wet down and let it snap back some.
The sproingy yarn and subtle colours are courtesy of Fleece Artist Bluefaced in the Wildflower colourway.

And in the tradition of all great incredible acts, I have already started to forget the tedious pain of the middle section and am fondling yarn set aside for a second one. Someone please intervene.

Monday, January 8, 2007

Welcome UFO Knit Club Team Members!

I'm Leah, and I'm going to dive in here and post a little about the UFO's that have me feeling like I should DO SOMETHING NOW! Unfortunately, I'm a little burned out from holiday knitting and I'm having a really hard time getting motivated to knit at all! I have been playing with my spindles and doing some spinning UFO's ~ small projects that have been sitting in my basket waiting to be plied. I spent a few hours doing that last night.

This shawl is one thing I'm determined to finish and need to get back into working on, since I'm hosting a knit along for it, which has been really quiet and quite a few folks have dropped out. The shawl is hard! It's the Fiber Trends "Sheep Shawl" and we're knitting it in Jaggerspun Zephyr...I'm using the color "Suede" and it's just lovely! I can't work on this unless it's first thing in the morning and there's no stress, no distractions...sometimes I feel like I should lock myself in a closet with it! I'm about 90 rows into it.
This is my very first plied handspun and I'm trying to make this scarf vest thing but I just don't know...this particular yarn has given me fits from the start! I wanted to do the "Cleaves" pattern from Knitty with it but it looked awful so I tore it out after finishing a whole sleeve and started this. I'm done with the back and one side and need to do the other side and then sew it up and do the collar.
I just don't know...I feel like it's going to be super weird looking but I do really like the pattern. If I have to rip this out again, I'll be ticked! It's just an odd color for me to be working with, I guess, and if all else fails, the yarn could be a boring handbag :<>
And here is one thing that's really bugging's the Mesilla t-shirt from Knitty that I meant to work up as a store sample last summer and still haven't finished. My excuse was that I lost a double point for the longest time (ha!) and now...ack...I just have to do the sleeves, then pick up for the neck and do the finishing work. It's pretty cute, with these picot edges and color bands around the neck and sleeves and was fun to knit in the round. I don't plan on adding the embroidery details. This probably should hit the top of the list, though, just to get the damn thing out of my guilt trip!

Then there are the Yukon Sox (it's probably a bad idea to give you guys links to patterns, isn't it? Not very UFO motivational!)

I started with a double strand of this alpaca, wool & nylon yarn that my husband had on cones for his sock knitting machines and they're still done on size 1 needles. Sheesh..I hope that's what I used. Ha...I need to write this stuff down! No...I'm sure that's it cuz they went Really Slow and I could only stand one 12-row repeat at a sitting. I finished one sock after about 6 months and didn't want to start the other one till I'd washed and blocked the first sock. I know, I know, BUT I pretty much knew what the yarn would do since my DH did make a few pairs of socks from it on his machines. I just didn't know how it would turn out with handknitting. It turned out really well though! I love this sock and am wondering what I can wear to show it off once the other one is done :) They're really pretty on and feel nice and make me feel girly and that's always a good thing!

This is not by any means my complete UFO gallery :) Just a few of the things that are at the top of the list, I guess. Honest opinions are welcomed, really! You can even call my handspun butt ugly if you want and I won't be mad! The Sheep Shawl is the sort of UFO that's going to be in progress for awhile. If that were the only thing I "allowed" myself to knit, I'd pull out all my hair and run away screaming! A little honesty, a little cheerleading and any and all suggestions ~ bring 'em on!