Saturday, February 1, 2014

Do your needles hang low?

I know, I know, how do I even dare to show my face after such a long time? It's been busy, let's just say that. A quick update on the scrumptious yarns pictured in the last post. I knit them up into a stole, called it Seven Seas and submitted it to the Best Shawl Made from Commercial Fiber category at the 2013 Finger Lakes Fiber Festival. I didn't win first prize, but I placed. Details here, if you haven't seen it.

My real reason for writing today is to congratulate my friend Tina Turner, who opens her new business, The Knitting Circle today. In her honour, I have penned the following lines, after, er, let's say, the well known children's folk song, Do Your Ears Hang Low?  Extra verses and versions are encouraged!

Do Your Needles Hang Low?

Do your needles hang low?
Do they wobble to and fro?
Can you quickly knit a sock?
Can you quickly knit a throw?
Can you knit a little quicker, like a continental stitcher?
Do your needles hang low?

Do your needles stand high?
Do they reach up to the sky?
Are they faster when they're wet?
Are they slower when they're dry?
Do you keep them in a jar, or on the back seat of your car?
Do your needles stand high?

Do your needles lay flat?
As you knit around a hat?
Do you like to knit alone?
Do you like to sit and chat?
If you'd like a little sparkle, you should join the Knitting Circle.
Do your needles lay flat?

Do your needles stick out?
Do you waggle them about?
Do you flap them up and down?
As you fly about the town?
Do you call them into service, when you feel a little nervous?
Do your needles stick out?

Do your needles flip flop?
Do you find the time to stop?
Do you start socks at the bottom?
Do you start them at the top?
Are you knitting up a storm, then you're surely in good form.
Do your needles flip flop?

Saturday, July 20, 2013

PS on the yarn

Here is a photo of the yarns that I will combine for the project that I described in the last post. There are two shades of Debbie Bliss Angel and two of Skaska lace weight merino. Mmmmm. 

On the road

Off to Montreal, Ottawa, Wakefield today to visit family and the Three Crazy Knitters: Juie, Maureen and Kathryn The current post (Jun 24th) shows Kat's new studio. I hear that she has given up her day job and is painting and dyeing full time. I am looking forward to visiting Riverside Studio this week. Her merino singles are gorgeous.

First I must get out of Rochester. My first flight was cancelled. I was to fly through Philly but am now flying west to Minneapolis in order to fly east from here to Montreal. Crazy. If I get there on time it will have taken 14 hours to fly what normally takes 5.5 hours to drive. Don't ask.

In the meantime, I am catching up on the knitting blogs. There seems to be rash of people posting photos of their ancestors. I'll have to see what I can come up with.

Here's my current edging from Heirloom Knitting. My idea is to knit it to about 70 or 80 percent of the desired length and cast off. Then pick up all along the inside edge and knit a stripe of a similar width. Cast off, then pick up for another stripe.

I'll use a different combination of the Angel mohair and the Skaska for each stripe. I'm struggling to download the right photos, but here's what I have so far. 

Sunday, July 7, 2013


I've probably given up on about half the sweaters that I ever started. And, if I finish a sweater, there's a good chance that no one will actually wear it without serious adjustments. Witness my Lopi, my Minimalist Cardigan, and the Mark II among others.  Bit Red seemed to be a success at first, but later I learned that the giftee secretly tried to shrink it and then gave it away. There are other tales. My sweaters have accidentally been tipped into washing machines, adopted as dressing gown liners, and re-purposed as cat beds. 

But I never give up. I keep at it. Sometimes I manage success. The North Sea Jacket worked out well and I wear it often. Sometime in March, I volunteered to test knit Copperline for Eileen Vito. It turned out well and I took it to Iceland where I wore it daily under my winter coat during our whirlwind car trip through the Eastern Fjords. 

Then I volunteered to knit BFL Sweater for Kuduja.  I loved the entire process and the end result as well. I really enjoyed knitting with Anna and the other test knitters. Plus I learned a whole new method of knitting a sweater from top down.

I used Madeline Tosh Merino Light. Not the hardest wearing yarn perhaps, but it turned out well. I have washed it several times and it continues to look good. The sleeves are knit into the armscyes from shoulder to cuff.

I liked this pattern so much that I made a second one in a more alarming shade of blue. Here, the yarn is a true sock yarn, for which the pattern was written. It is Periwinkle Sheep Watercolors II sock yarn which people swear is the same as Tosh sock. I haven't done it yet, but I intend to wash this sweater in the machine.

I have a few other sweaters in the works but I am on shaky ground with them. I have a couple of commitments to get through, before I get back to knitting more sweaters.

Back in the winter, I promised to show you the shawl that I was working on for a friend's wedding. Well, maybe I didn't promise, but I was planning on promising. Here it is, Jane Sowerby's A Curved Shawl with Diamond Edging, from the book, Victorian Knitting Today. 

In other news, the local Morello cherries are ripe and preserves are being made from them. Fingers crossed.

Monday, July 1, 2013

It's like this...

Let there be radishes! Black Spanish radishes! We grew these last year too, but they quickly bolted. We only had a few meals out of them, but I saved all the seeds and planted 4 rows on Memorial Day (May 27th). They are longer to harvest than regular radishes and won't be ready until late August. If they bolt again, I'll just save the seeds and try again in cooler weather. It's been pretty cool though. 

Can't believe I haven't written here since February! I have been knitting like mad. I grappled with my sweater issues and completed three between March and the beginning of June. They were two test knits , one of which I liked so much that I knit it twice.

The first was my friend Eileen Vito's Copperline, which you can see here in Ravelry. Copperline is a long sport weight cardigan with a cabled yoke and lovely detailing along the seams. I knit my version in two colours.

Then I wore it to Iceland. Whirlwind one-week trip. More on this later, but how about this Lopi?!

OKAY, that's it for tonight. More soon.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

I take it back

I said I was tired of winter. I lied. I've been throwing myself into snow drifts and making snow angels for 24 hours now. Loving it.

5 pm:

10 pm:

10 am:

But mostly I am thrilled that I was able to frolic in the snow without my ankles giving out on me. I remember last winter when I could hardly walk downstairs while having all that reno going on at home and I am grateful.

In knitting, at our guild last month some of us started sock circles. There are 5 people in mine. Each person starts a pair of socks for themselves. We're doing top down, so you knit the cuff and halfway down the leg. Then you pass it on to the next person. Month by month, each member of the circle knits part of someone else's pair of socks. I started mine and passed it on. I'm using leftover red and blue bits of sock yarn. Hope it goes well. Here's what it looks like:

Friday, February 8, 2013

And now this...

There has been enough snow today to have a bit of fun. I hate to think about the fruit trees though. See how our birch is completely bent over....