Friday, April 19, 2013


We got a lot of rain over the past couple of days here in my hood. The Philosopher, felines, and I are fine. I had some train trouble commuting yesterday morning but our building is on high ground and we're on the top floor so my greatest inconvenience has been wet feet and weather that, today at least, is trying to convince me that it is February rather than late April.

I did finally acquire a Philosopher foot and I've made a lot more progress on the second sock of the April pair, a good thing considering the date. I turned the heel during a meeting and now just have a gusset and foot to go. That should be very manageable within the next ten says.

Did I tell you I started the baby blanket for the Blonde? I know I mentioned the need to start. Anyway, I've ordered and received yarn from Webs and another log cabin has been cast on. Don't worry, this one looks very different from the first log cabin I did for her and I'm using yellow/orange/blue rather than orange/green/brown. I'm doing squares as I did for my own log cabin and am still debating how I'll piece them together. I've been thinking a three-needle bind off might be an interesting technique to try.

It's Friday and I don't have much more than that.... Wishing you a safe, happy, warm and uneventful weekend..

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Tiding Me Over

Getting the Philosopher to try on his latest pair of socks so I can start the toe on Sock 1 has proved challenging. We live together, you would think we could manage this but apparently not a lot of effort. And yes, I'm working on Sock 2 from the outside of the skein but it's just  not the same....

So, I've started another pair of socks to hold me over. They're underway and you'll see more of them on Thursdays to come, this is just to tide you over.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Yarn Con: Yarn Content

Sidenote: Kristin asked about the footnotes in Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell--they're narrated in at the appropriate point with a "Footnote 1" at the beginning to indicate.

Getting back to YarnCon, I found I had actually had a bit of ennui when it came to yarn purchasing.  No, I didn't have a fever. Of late, I've found that while I stare at yarn stores rather covetously and imagine buying all the things, it's harder to purchase things just because they are beautiful. I have beautiful yarn in my stash and realistically I'm 2 years away from running out of single skeins that are destined to become socks (current count: 28-32 skeins depending on if I really think they'll be socks today; averaging 1 pair of socks per month). So, as I wasn't really looking for a sweaters or giant shawl's worth of yarn (and many smaller dyers don't commit to that quantity, understandably), and I wasn't on a sock binge, it was a little harder to commit. 

I did pick up something from Fleur de Fiber.  I'd gotten a skein of her yarn from Windy Knitty when that shop first opened and the Philosopher has just recently claimed it to be made into socks for him.* As I haven't knit that up yet, I opted for some of her Mawata silk hankies. 


The colors aren't perfect here, but photographing these were a challenge. I could NOT get focus.  I've  been meaning to try silk hankies since the Yarn Harlot blogged about them. I'm going to try fingerless mitts with them, but hopefully I can make them full mittens if I have enough.  Philosopher asked how I'd make yarn--I demonstrated using the technique Carin showed on her podcast (start at about 5:50).


And then we went back to the Sophie's Toes booth. This was one of the busier booths, full enough of people that it was a little hard to get to see all of the beautiful things that she had. Philosopher had commented on one skein on our first pass through, though and that's a good reason to go back.

For him, soon or eventually to be fingerless mitts:


This is the Flannel colorway


And for me, in all the warm fall colors called Good Earth


And with that, we were off to see dinosaurs in 3D! The movie still holds up as a great adventure, though I was struck at how different it might have been if they'd had cell phones. Can you believe it's been 20 years since it first came out?

*Yes, he's spoilt. I let him and AudioGirl rummage through my bin of "these skeins into socks next" and they each picked out a couple of skeins for their next sock gifts. Must remember to send the Incredibly Patient Mother similarly rummaging next time she is local.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Yarn Con: A Quick Spin and The Ladies of Piddleloop

I did make it to YarnCon last weekend but sadly, for only about 40 minutes. Morning errands running late and having agreed to go to Jurassic Park meant that I only really had time for one swing through all of the booths and some hasty purchases. Of what I did see there was a really nice variety and there seemed to be a pretty steady (if not extremely busy) flow of people. Attendees really appeared to be there to do some buying, not just browsing.

The Philosopher came with and found some PVC spinning wheels that he really wanted to try (and also maybe to duplicate). These were available from Babe's Fiber Garden.

I had thought I'd make a full loop through before breaking out the cash but that went out the window when I reached the Piddleloop table. I loved how laid back they had everything. Bags were sorted by style in simple rummaging bins. I could flip through as you might a row of cards and pull out designs for comparison.  And of course, when they have a special when you buy two....

Piddleloop Pair

They come flat, which meant easy storage in my purse.  Putting them away, I pulled out the Piddleloop currently in purse rotation (green one here), which Jen and Wendy exclaimed to be "old fabric" and commented that it looked well loved.  (Either that or they were horrified that one of their bags has been through the wash that many times and is still tea stained, I'm not sure which...)

And so now I have cats--the tabby looks like Gypsy

Piddleloop Cat 1

and I have Sparkly Sheep!

Piddleloop Sheep 2

They said I was the first to pick up a sparkly sheep bag but almost immediately as I examined it a woman came up and wanted one also. She took the one with the yellow zipper.

Yarn in the next post!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

It's Got Polkadots on the Inside

Small box bags are one of my very favorite knitting accessories. I love putting yarn into them for the first time, loading a couple of spare ones so that if I need to grab a knitting project and run I'm all prepared* and there are so many great fabrics being used by the various makers.

When my Abbie Bag went missing earlier this year, I took it as a sign that it was time for a couple of new bags to enter into the rotation. I'd heard a lot about Stitched by JessaLu Bags before and this seemed an idea time to try one out. I have, unfortunately at this point, missed out on the Rock, Paper, Scissors, Lizard, Spock bag. I hope she gets more of that fabric because I seriously want one. 

Having lost that opportunity, I went for a hedgehog bag instead. I actually have another bag that my friend GSK made for me in La Crosse that uses this same fabric and it's one of my very favorite for large projects, especially in the summer. It doubles nicely as a small purse. But now it was all box bags.  

Jessalu Bag

Isn't it cute? It's a little more rectangular than I'm used too but still very roomy.  

Hedgehog Jessalu

I like the matching fabric handle and the maker tag.  What really impressed me though was the density. Flipping it inside out, I could see why. JessaLu uses batting between her main and lining fabric.

Jessalu Inside

It hasn't been put to the test yet but I spent about 2 hours winding up yarn for more socks the other day, it's time is coming.... 

*You do this too, right? Don't you? 

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

The Ribs Go Marching 1x1....

I'm very very slowly making my way through the collar of the Rust and Stone (or Cake) Cardigan. The rows are running approximately 500 stitches--there've been a couple of decreases but I know I started with over 500.  Each row is taking just shy of forever.

There is a slight ruffle at the mid-bottom of the collar on each side.  


It's just starting to become apparent.  I have a feeling I'm going to run out of yarn before I run out of rows. I'm supposed to do (if I'm reading the pattern right, I probably should check the updated/final pattern rather than keep going on this version) 15 more rows plus a yarn eating bind off. I have half of a 50 gram skein left and some leftovers.  I plan to get as far as I can and then bind off.  

Of course, getting knitting time on the cardigan has been a challenge. Whenever I pick up the needles something like this happens:


And apparently my camera is biased, preferring to focus on cat feet rather than the decreases at the collar that will help it lay flat. 


Here's most of the collar. It's on a 40" needle I think? Whatever size, it's squashed.  


But the end is in sight, at the finish of this skein.  And then it'll be off to the dyepots.  

Embracing a Color of Fall

Being out of Loopy Academy Homework has left a strange deadline hole in my life that SEVERAL pregnant friends are attempting to fill. Yes, ...