Saturday, March 31, 2012

Trouble In Thangleland

Half square triangles are NOT easy. Not even with Thangles. Daddio's cutting skills are a bit wonky and my sewing skills are awful so we are not getting the perfectly square blocks that you are supposed to have.

It is slow going-but it is going and he is happy with the results. Not me. Those wonky points are still driving me crazy.

Friday, March 30, 2012

Father Knows Best

When Dad was helping me card the last batch of dyed locks we had a bag of odds and ends left so I let him play with them. He picked out some colors and carded away.Then he did something I rarely do-he recarded to get everything just right. I was surprised to see the depth of color he achieved. To top it all off, he weighed the resulting batts to see how much he had to make sure he made enough of it to be useful. Talk about a professional job. I should hire him to do all my carding for me.

I started spinning the results today and they are nice. Very nice. Too bad he picked such pretty lady colors or these would be a pair of surprise socks for him. The next time he plays with the carder, I am going to limit his color choices so I'll be sure to get something for a guy.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

The Flight has Landed!

The Flight Path KAL is over and my hat is done. There were several times during this experience that I wondered what on earth I had gotten into.

There were circular cast ons, crazy hem bind offs and picot edges. I am not even going to mention the duplicate stitch that I opted out of. I just embroidered the beak and I think it looks fine. The final border spells out "spread your wings" and looks amazing although following the chart made me cross-eyed at times.

Part of the deal is to photograph the hat in unusual places and post them in the project thread for prizes.

This is the best I could do. Around here the best birds are of the water variety. I was just hoping that my new little hat wasn't going to make like a bird and fly away to sea. It was a very windy morning.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012


The Kide Shawl is nearing completion. I am halfway through the border edge.

It is a tedious pick up and knit affair.

The worrisome part is the size of this remaining ball of yarn. Will I make it to the finish line or will I have to reorder and pray the dye lots are similar?

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Planning Ahead

I am hoping to get to Rhinebeck this year. I haven't been in two years. In October 2010 I had my gall bladder out and last October my daughter got married. In 2009 I bought this spindle and this Merino there to spin on the long train ride home.

I just now finished plying the first 20 grams.

I am hoping to get enough by summer to make something to wear to the festival this year.

I've got a lot to do since this is just a teeny tiny amount.

It is from Puckerbrush Farms and it is incredibly soft Merino.

Eight ounces minus twenty grams equals plenty left to do something with.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Baby Mugshot

Here is the official unblocked portrait of the latest baby things to come off the needles. They are my usual go-to quick infant knits: Easy Peasy Baby Hat and Christine's Booties both in Elann's Baby Cashmere. They surprisingly only took one and a half teeny tiny 25 gram balls, including all that i-cord.

Sunday, March 25, 2012


The basket of roving I keep by the spinning wheels was looking pretty empty so I enlisted the aid of Daddio to do some damage to that big bag of fleece in the shed. I'm always helping him out on his quilts-so fair is fair.

I had him bag up some dirty stuff for washing.

While he was pinning, I was dyeing some recently washed locks. I have been a bit more adventurous with the dye lately by adding the locks and water gradually to produce a variation in color.

While I was fooling around with the dye pots, I put him to work cranking some already dried locks.

He has as a much better eye for color than I do so it was no surprise that in no time at all I ended up with bags and bags of pretty roving.

Now I need to teach him to spin.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

KAL Update

The Fight Path KAL is back on. We all have our yarn so the clues are coming every Monday again. I have discovered the best way to use a colorwork chart is with my Kindle. I love that thing.

It is a mystery KAL and it really is a mystery as to what on earth this is going to be. It's very pretty whatever it is. The yarn is gorgeous Alto superwash BFL from Abstract Fibers.

Under the green picot edge there is still more. Birds and lots of them. There are some mighty long floats on those birdies so I am knitting the whole thing inside out hoping to avoid the dreaded pucker.

Here is the whole thing up to clue #3. Any ideas?

Friday, March 23, 2012

Purple Scarf Mug Shot

For a while now, I've been trying to get the hang of my new fringe twister. It does make short work of a tedious task but there is definitely a trick to it. As you can see I have not yet mastered it. Even with counting the number of twists, I have not been getting fringe that is uniform. Comparing this mess to a scarf I twisted by hand-well, there is no comparison, my hand twisting looks much better.

No matter-the project is done and packed away until next year. It's been too hot for scarves for ages around here. Today we may just break a record.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Finishing School Drop Out

I had breakfast with You Tube on the Kindle this morning while I took a refresher course in finishing. I only finish a sweater every few years so I am always very rusty.

As this yarn is about half acrylic, I first gave it a steam blocking as recommended by someone or other in a video. I had never done this before and I thought it was pretty cool.

I began as you always do, with setting in the sleeves. It's tricky business as nothing really lines up or matches. I had to rip out these ugly first attempts many times.

When I finally got the stitches somewhat to my liking, I made it to the end only to discover I had more sleeve than body. That's bad.

I ripped it all out and lined it up again taking lots more sleeve stitches on the needle and it worked without making the sleeves too puffy.

Sewing the sleeves and side seams together is easier if you have learned to see knitting stitches and follow rows. I can't do either very well so there was lots of ripping back going on here as well. At least the color bands matched on the sleeves so that helped guide me along.

The colors didn't match up on the sides making it crazy hard to know where you were.

I had to enlist the help of everything I had that would hold those long seams together. It took a few tries but in the end I managed to come out fairly even on both sides. I did notice however that my front ribbing was not the same size as my back ribbing. Jeesh. I am such a rookie when it comes to this sweater stuff.

Sewing on that crazy shawl collar scared me to death but it went on pretty easy once I realized there was more neckline than collar. I only had to rip it back once.

Just when I thought I was done and it was time to celebrate I realized I had a lot of weaving in of ends to do.

Modern Lodge Pullover in Lion Brand's Amazing, Ruby colorway

It was a sunny day so I took the whole mess out on the porch and finished it off.

The mugshot shows clearly the issue that so many others had that I learned about too late. The sleeves are too wide. Mine are also too long but I can't blame anyone for that.
The final verdict is that the sweater is ho hum but I love the yarn. I think I will save up for another sweater's worth and make a simple seamless pullover out of it.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012


Daddio's newest obsession has been keeping us pretty busy.

He does all the cutting and pinning and I sew the seams. I learned the hard way that pins put in the wrong way can end up in your fingers very quickly when sewing these crazy paper things. I got a big ouchie today.

Our first few blocks are looking pretty good, in spite of one being turned the wrong way round here. I can also see our points are not lining up quite as nicely as I would like but since we have about a hundred more to go, I am pretty sure we will figure it out soon enough.

You can learn all about Thangles here.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Fairy Blossoms

I ran across some more daffodils in the woods the other day. There is nothing unusual about that until you see the size of them.

Happy Spring!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Inside Out

These are the evil things known as floats. They travel behind your work and make terrible problems when they are not happy.

When they are not long enough they scrunch and bunch and turn lots of hard work into an ugly puckered mess.

I've spent a lot of time recently trying to appease them with no luck-until I finally happened upon a solution on-what else-You Tube. Turn your work inside out and knit from the opposite side. Really. It works.