Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Kauni Love

A year or so ago, I made a Baktus Scarf using Kauni yarn. The long colorways & color transitions make this one of my favorite yarns. Aunt E & Jen are currently doing a KAL (knit-a-long) for a Kauni shawl/wrap we saw at Stitches Midwest. Not to be left out, I went to my stash for the black/gray/white combo which is becoming a great Leaf Lace Scarf

The pattern is quick & super simple so hopefully I'll finish before the cooler weather settles in. Mom's eyes sparkled when I showed it to her so I probably won't get to keep it for myself (lol).

Finished the Minimalist Top aka the "Fuzzy Wuzzy Bear" sweater. All the stockinette wore me down so it didn't quite make it to tunic length. Fits nicely though & oh so warm. This was supposed to be my year of "11 Sweaters in 2011"....... well, Fuzzy Wuzzy officially rolls in as #1. What can I say but I certainly had good intentions.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Yarn Blast in the Midwest

This year's Stitches Midwest was a blast. Aunt E & I met up with Jen in the burbs of Chicago this past weekend for a knitting getaway of yarns, gadgets, and books. This was our 3rd year in attendance & we were immediately greeted by....... What a hoot!

I got to visit all me favorite vendors - Signature Needle Arts, Miss Babs Yarns, WEBS, and Habu Textiles - as well as some new favorites: Erin Lane Bags, Flying Fingers, The Yarn & Fiber Company, Windy Valley Musk Ox, and Fiber Optic.

Plenty of goodies but I think my favorite has to be the Habu hand-dyed cashmere & the silk/mohair blend from Capistrano Fiber Arts (sold by Habu). Planning a couple of luxury scarves for me & only me (lol). Here's some shots from the weekend ................

I even managed to start & finish a project over the weekend. WEBS gave away a mini-skein of Berroco Boboli at the festival that I turned into a headband for DD#1. The Boboli is ultra soft & great to knit with.

Happy knitting

Monday, August 22, 2011

Knitting Nook - DIY Style

Trying to get my "knitting seasons" in sync. Seems that by the time Autumn rolls around, I should have at least a couple of cardigans, car coats & wraps completed. Headed in the right direction. I finished Jared Flood's Guernsey Wrap in an olive color which will be great for early fall. Didn't follow all the repeats but it's certainly long enough to wraparound a couple times.

Also finishing the Mohair Minimalist by Anna Kuduja. It's a top-down seamless top in stockinette stitch. Found myself with an extended ER wait with Mom earlier in the month so this baby was practically finished in a weekend. That was the positive - the not-so-positive was that I obviously used a heavier mohair than the original pattern envisioned so mine isn't so sheer. But it will be perfect for winter when I'm going for the fuzzy-wuzzy-wuzza-bear look (lol). Making it tunic length so maybe mama bear?

All my years & years of watching HGTV have finally paid off. I needed to convert the former knitting room back to a bedroom & find some space for the yarn & knitting paraphernalia. Drum roll please........... meet my Knitting Nook!

With a great chair find on Craigslist, floor tiles from Lowes (love them!), and all my knitting gear, I'm in knitters heaven........also known as the oversized closet of my bedroom. I had a blast & looking forward to starting my next project when I return from Stitches Midwest this weekend.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Another Year Older

So much going on. Days are whizzing by. Mom's chemo treatments are ongoing; DD#2 scored a great new job; DD#1 was honored as Citizen of the Year in Media from the Roanoke NAACP and I celebrated my 54th birthday a couple weeks ago. I'm entering a landmark year - planning on retiring on my next birthday....... Oh Happy Day!

In the midst of all this I'm still balancing out the hectic with knitting. After a couple of hiccups on the chart for Shirley Paden's Cabled Shrug, finally making decent progress. It is a beautiful design & the cables are exquisite. Haven't felt so challenged since completing the Every Way Wrap back in 2009.

Y'all know how I love all my knitting gadgets. Special shout-out to my knitsib, Debbie, for this beautiful Yarn Bowl. Been scoping them out for over a year & just like Goldilocks.......some were too small, some were too low......but this one is just right!

Happy Knitting.........

Monday, May 30, 2011

The Guernsey & The Shrug

Happy Memorial Day!!! The wonderful start of, picnics, beaches & of course - new knitting projects. After finishing so many hats, I need a challenge. So I turned to one of my favorite designers, Shirley Paden. There are several of her patterns in my Ravelry queue including a cabled shrug from the Interweave Knits Fall 2005 issue. Chose the Nashua Alpaca/Merino blend in Periwinkle from my stash.

The design is a simple rectangle with cuffs and an intricate diamond-cable pattern. Since I'm going through my "wrap" phase, I also started Jared Flood's Guernsey Wrap. It's also a simple rectangle with a series of knit & purl patterns that simulate a traditional Guernsey sweater. Chose Elann's Limited Edition Naples - a wool/silk/rayon blend with a great drape. Perfect for any air-conditioned venue.

The Guernsey is my take-along project while the shrug demands all my attention so it's my stay-at-home project. So no excuses for not knitting all the time (lol).

Enjoy any festivities you have going on today. Mom came home from hospital on Saturday full of energy so we'll plant the garden today & enjoy goodies off the grill. Happy Knitting!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Thrown For A Loop

It's been two months since my Mom was diagnosed with lung cancer. She has moved in with me & we're working our way through chemo, nurses, physical therapists, home health aids & far too many trips to the ER. Through all the upheaval, we are blessed with a strong family & support system. Brother stepped up to ensure her move/storage of goods goes smoothly. DD#2 cares for Mom daily while I work. DD#1 travels home every weekend to cook & care for Mom while giving us a break. Auntees call, write & most importantly, send their prayers & love. Speaking of prayers - there is a "prayer circle extraordinaire" all around the country that's providing us strength everyday.

And through it all, I knit. Hats are perfect mindless knitting & Mom calls them a security blanket for her head that seems to always be cold. Sanguine Gryphon's Bugga - a mix of merino & cashmere; Blue Sky Alpaca Silk; and a skein of hand-dyed have been transformed to...........

Although I don't have a pic - a big shoutout goes to my knitsib - Arthella - for knitting Mom a beanie in beautiful shades of pink & purple from supersoft yarn. Speaking of knitsibs, Debbie & I attended our fourth Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival on the Saturday before Mother's Day.

A beautiful day with vendors galore...... Babs, Bugga, Mohair, & a yarn meter - all made their way into my bags (lol). (Need to seriously consider a yarn diet!)

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Happy Birthday Ma!

Today is my Mom's 76th Birthday. She's living the life I hope to at that age...... retired 20 years, organizing events in her active-seniors community, & traveling to the casino whenever she wants....... She worked so hard the first part of life, I like to see her enjoying the second part. My handknit gift to her was the Button-up Wrap by cdaniele. Made from Cascade Yarns Eco+ in the Cordovan colorway. She loves the poncho style but arthritis makes it difficult to maneuver over the head. The button-up front makes it secure & easy.

Belated Happy New Year to you all. It was a wonderful holiday season filled with family, friends, & lots of knitting. I finished all the hand knit stocking stuffers (a first for me) and joined the 11 in 2011 challenge on Ravelry. It's finishing 11 sweaters (cardigans, tanks, pullovers, etc) during 2011. It's really just an excuse to knit more (as if I needed an excuse). In addition to pulling out the unfinished Einstein Coat, the Tempest Cardigan, & the Vogue short-sleeve cardigan - I started the Cire-Perdue by Norah Gaughan. Beautiful cable up the center front.

Let me get busy........ happy knitting!