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Archive for the ‘Knitting’ Category

Another spring snow storm.  Not a blizzard but lots of wet, heavy snow bending trees and fences, and obscuring views. It is in juxtaposition to spring blooms indoors.

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Looks like “we” will be manhandling the snow blower again. Especially since Tim has a small concert here tonight.  I need a break from my latest endeavors anyway.

I fell into a rabbit hole that held a pin loom.  These are small hand held looms that make small woven squares.  But they are addicting.  One website I found said they are just like potato chips, you can’t make just one.

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Now I’m puzzling over piecing them into a baby garment.  I found my 1930’s edition of 2″ and 4″ looms on ebay and they even came with some finished blocks.  The pattern books from that era are a hoot.  I could make a coat for myself, blankets, rugs… The mind boggles.

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After I made a couple of hats on my Passap knitting machine, it needed something else to do.  Here’s a cotton blanket for a new baby.

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These sweet blocks were a fun knit for a charity knitting project.  I finally found and joined a fiber guild.  Who cares if it meets an hour away – at night.  A girl’s gotta do what a girl’s gotta do.  So many talented fiber artists there.

Here’s another obsessive project.  I knit 6 strips on, ahem, my other knitting machine, 3 at a time, then wove them into this cute little ball.  OK, maybe I have a bit of cabin fever.

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And we can never have enough rugs.  Really, I am trying to reduce my stash.  I had these sock loops and even had some unused warp.  They go together nicely.  The classes I took at Red Stone Fiber Glen have paid off.  I can dress a loom with finesse these days.

The stash I am not using has been squished so at least the volume, if not the quantity, has been reduced.  Tim picked up 5 gallon, lidded spackle buckets for me and I stored my 3 clean fleeces in them.  For another day.  Maybe next March?

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At my darling daughter’s request, I’m back to knitting hats. Stranded  hats.  She wore one of my hats to a party and ended up requesting 4 more, including 2 moose hats, which I had to design.  I got out my punch cards and away I went.  They appear to be frolicking or playing leapfrog though.

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Frolicking moose

I’m going to sew these on my machine to try to speed up the assembly.  Right now it takes me almost as much time to finish them by hand as it does to knit them on the machine.

Our good friend is heading way north to volunteer for the Yukon Quest.  She is an avid dog lover, skijoerer (yup I spelled that right.  Skijoring (in Wikipedia) which is defined as:  sport where a person on skis is pulled by a horse, a dog (or dogs) or a motor vehicle. It is derived from the Norwegian word skikjøring meaning ski driving. So she wants to see the pros at work with their sleds and  beautiful dogs.   I made her a hat of course.

It’s not my pattern; I bought the knitting chart and made my own punch card for my knitting machine.  I’m quite pleased with it.  Everyone at the dog shelter coveted one too.  A good endorsement.  The pattern is Husky Sledding Chart and its graphics are perfect.

Next up are panda hats I am still designing and punching cards for.  Three color punch card is keeping my brain fresh. My machine is older and relies on punch cards instead of the computer.  This means a lot of up front work before a pattern may be knit.

Loki looked stranded in the snow yesterday when he was stalking something in the bushes.

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So handsome.  Then he came in and cuddled with the rambunctious, hyper, mildly annoying, but so sweet, kitten, Elli. They were even touching for warmth.

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We had a small dinner party the other night and I made the American version of a self saucing pudding and I have to say it was delicious and easy.  The recipe is from King Arthur Flour.  They call it a self saucing chocolate cake.  Our chocolate loving, skijoerer loved it too.  A good testament.  Here’s how pretty the table looked before dinner.  I won’t show you the aftermath but a good time was had by all.

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Here’s the link to the King Arthur recipe.  Try it!

 

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Sometimes it’s fun and educational to follow a knitting pattern as written.  I rarely do and end up with a variety of results.  Not so with my most recent hand knit projects.  The patterns are from Brooklyn Tweed kids and are beautiful and a fun knit.

The first is a young girl’s sweater, Petal.  It all began when a niece requested another sweater for her daughter, in white please. Well she also has a son, and a sister with two boys. You see how it goes.  One white sweater became four.  I had fun planning the projects.  

Here’s Petal.

  
Look at those details. Not your average circular yoke cardigan. I have a cone of lovely sock yarn from Webs I’ve been using for all sorts of projects and it really softens after washing.

The next is Wyatt.  I liked the Henley style and stitch pattern.  I happened to have some yarn recycled from a girl’s dress made of cotton, cashmere and angora that is machine washable. It knit up beautifully and I have some left over for a soft hat.

   
 
Now for the older boys.  I wanted to knit sweaters on my two knitting machines. One can handle worsted and bulky weight yarn.  I found a nice raglan sweater on the Webs’ sight and converted it to work flat.  I liked the bold stripe and, since the boys are big Islanders fans, I incorporated their team colors.  It worked out beautifully.  What a way to sail through all that stockinette. The pattern is Jonathan.

  
Finally, I wanted to do some stranded color work on my knitting machine that works with fingering weight yarn.  I saw another pattern I liked in Brooklyn Tweed called Carson, which appealed to me because of the way the colorwork was used in the hem and sleeves.  But it was too small and a little tricky to convert.  I decided to make my life simple and knit a modified drop shoulder sweater with a V-neck.  Then I found a stranded pattern I liked in the book, Traditional Knitting by Michael Peirson, and made a punchcard to work with my Passap Dm80. I kept the neck detail from Carson, which rolls a little.

 
The first two sweaters took two months.  The last two, four days!  
Now I can finally get back to working on Tim’s quilt for the log cabin. 

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The holidays are behind us.  The stockings, which were hung with care, are back in storage.

  
Attention turns to the New Year and our resolutions. Here’s mine.  In 2016 any additions to my wardrobe will be made by me.  That is not to say I will only wear handmade clothing but I have to make everything I would normally buy.  

Needless to say, I shopped at Victoria’s Secret and the Gap on December 30.

First on my list is a few silk camisoles.  Perhaps pajama pants from handwoven fabric.  My homemade bathing suit (sewn, not knit) is holding up just fine. I’m flush in hats, gloves, and slippers. I may need a wool coat. We’ll see what the New Year brings.

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On the home front

I’ve been home a few days to visit. Soon I’ll be off again to see my dear son and daughter-in-law to be. In the meantime I’ve made progress on several unfinished projects.

I made several attempts on a “playful” panda hat pattern and think I have it now. This one is in fingering weight I’m gonna try the next in heavier yarn, DK.

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I only made one hat but I took one picture in the mirror so they look like they’re facing different directions.

I finished and blocked my lace mohair cropped cardigan that I started sometime in the summer, when we were sailing. I remember how it blew in the wind while I was trying to work on it. I wanted it to be snug and there’s negative ease alright, I can’t eat too much until I wear it.

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The wool braided rug is taking forever! I’ve become much less compulsive about how the strips fold and may finally finish it – or just declare it done.

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And I’m quilting this darling bargello baby quilt. Speedy project I found online and a great way to use up odd bits of fabric.

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I’m glad I had a chance to visit home. The scenery has been amazing, leaves in full color, milkweed shedding seeds.

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More specifically, sailing knitting lessons. Lesson number one. Save colorwork for calm moments. Multiple balls of yarn become a tangled mess when thrown into the cabin when all hell breaks loose.

Lesson number two. Time flies and you’ll never accomplish all you plan.

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Lesson number three. Enjoy these moments.

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Today is the first day since December my driveway is free of snow! No sign of the hundreds of daffodils I planted last Fall so I made my own flowers.

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I’ve gone off the deep end but promise never to make toilet paper roll covers with little dolls rising from them. Everyone had them in their house. Didn’t they? My roots show.

Ivy League Vest looks like a ship’s prow. I bought dowels to make my own wooly board but got away with my planter stand this time because there are no arms to contend with.

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Nice to know I have the same dimensions as a planter stand.

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