Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Stash Heaven, or Armoire Amour

Dear Sisters in Sticks,
My DH thinks I'm nuts, but setting up my knitting armoire has been the second-biggest thrill of the summer (after Norway, of course!) All of the drawers are full of yarn, sorted by fiber and style, but the yarns in ziploc bags on the shelf are those of which I have substantial amounts, enough for at least a short-sleeved pullover. The binders contain patterns, sorted by type, and the patterns downloaded from the web are in plastic page protectors. Woohoo!

Looking at the pictures reminds me of how much yarn I have (good), but I can also see that there is plenty of room for more (not so good.) I think I'll hold off buying more at least until Da Capo is fine.

Cathy, I agree that working on a longer circular needle is better than having all the stitches jammed together trying to escape. Have you taken care of the errant holes in the shawl?

Last night I had a knitting epiphany. While trying to figure out why some of the wraps were twisted on a short-row heel sock, I realized that I have been making backward yarnovers. On most things it doesn't seem to be a problem (as long as they are consistent) but on sock heels it makes a difference. Of course all the yarnovers on Da Capo are backward and I will just keep on making them backward on that little project.

Since last time I have joined two knit-alongs--Mason-Dixon and Hanne Falkenberg. It does create a community to know about (and communicate with) other knitters who are working on the same projects. The really amazing thing is that about 90 percent of the Hanna Falkenbergers are knitting Mermaid. I tried on a Mermaid before I bought Da Capo and I thought it made my butt look fat!

Well it turns out that I'm not driving to Charleston this weekend after all (DH decided to put off his move until Monday) so I see visions of yardwork and knitting time. Next week I am flying to San Diego for a meeting; that looks like lots of knitting time and maybe a yarn shop visit.

Gotta flit. Keep those cards and emails coming.


Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Evil Holes

WEll Pointy ladies,
daCapo is looking mighty fine, and I don't see a hole in sight. However, in the middle of the night, the evil doers of the knitting universe decided to mess with my knitting. I ain't too happy because I can guarantee you these holes that those blue arrows are pointing to in the picture were NOT there last night. See the area circled? That's the way it's supposed to look like. So, I have to see if I can fix it without tinking, or if I need to go back and fix it. And I thought I was at the smooth sailing part. Oh ye be humbled.....
I am awaiting some addi turbo circulars in size 8 to come in - purchased off Ebay in the middle of the night like a sniper in the night, I think I will be much happier with a little breathing space with this Spanish Christening Shawl that is packed onto the circulars I am using right now.
I need to be thinking kind thoughts on this blanket for the baby it is going to. I don't want it to have any bad vibes when it goes to the precious baby.

By the way, moi was on the front page of the local paper today. :) Must have been starving for some news. Check it out.

Da Capo Update

Da Capo reality has finally set in. As the triangle grows from the center of the bottom, the rows get longer (exactly 2 stitches per row) and perceived progress gets slower. I am 13 ridges (that's 26 rows) from the top of the white triangle, and each row feels like an accomplishment. I watched the Spike Lee documentary on New Orleans and Hurricane Katrina for the past two evenings and have gotten some quality knitting time, but there are still miles of rows before I sleeve. As a reward for finishing this section I plan to arrange all my stash and knitting supplies in a new yarn armoire. Woohoo!

Monday, August 14, 2006

Da Capo

Would you look at that... Da Capo is working up much faster than I would have imagined. The rows get longer and longer, but still they get done and it feels like progress. This weekend Gary and I are driving to Miami; I would like to be ready to work on one of the sleeves on the trip, although in this heat it may be better to bring along a sock to knit on in the car.

I don't have much else to report. Ilona leaves for Germany tomorrow and Philip leaves on Thursday or Friday. I have to say that I've spent a lot more time with Ilona than Philip this summer and will really miss having her to talk to. Yesterday we went to Florida Caverns; I haven't been there since Alexa (now 25) was in 4th grade.

Keep those letters and pictures coming. I would like to see some of Cathy's empty boxes.


Tuesday, August 08, 2006


Ellen, your current knitting projects are awesome. The scarf is beautiful! Sweaters and socks, too. The triangle that is a sweater in the making is interesting. Actually it sounds tempting to try. My socks are going slowly, but with any luck I will have a pair or two by the time the weather is cool enough for socks. Actually I saw a sock patten for heelless and toeless socks that may be more my speed. Cathy introduced me to baby bibs and I have one underway but had to take a hiatus from all knitting because my right thumb went out on strike. I diagnosed my own problem. A combination of the computer mouse and using the cane so I have switched to the left hand with the cane and the hand is better so I hope to be back knitting soon.

Not sure Cathy has accomplished much knitting recently between moving and getting ready for school to begin.
Sharon, where are you?

The heat and drought combined to wreak havoc in the yard, even the weeds wilted. the heat is still very much with us but recent rains have 'greened' things up. I am enjoying planning all the things I want to do this fall when the weather is cooler. Redesigning the flower beds is a top priority.

Ellen, keep sharing all your great projects with us.
Cheers. Naomi

A Scarf in August

Behold the scarf, in all its pointy splendor! I reworked the unsatisfactory points on the darker blue end by working the beginning edge in that color(except for the final WS row), ripping back the end of the scarf to the first row of the main pattern, and grafting on the new edge, with the kitchener stitches taking the place of the WS row of edging. The grafting won't bear too close inspection because of some tension issues but on the whole I am pleased with the outcome. Now I'm waiting for the weather to warrant a wool and silk scarf!

The other picture is the beginning of the Hanne Falkenberg sweater. It is a triangle (duh!) beginning at the center of the lower back and it will become the back and lower part of the fronts. There are 2 other pieces that make up the sleeves, upper fronts and lapels. The whole sweater is worked in garter stitch (with some cunning shaping, though) and the yarn has a definite mind of its own. It is just barely sport weight (I'm working on 2.5 needles) but it has so much body!

I picked up an entertaining book at the Leon Co. Public Library the other day, No Idle Hands, The Social History of Knitting in America, by Anne L. Macdonald. It has lots of pictures and anecdotes about the role of knitting in various eras, but one common thread is the idea of knitting for thrift. That seems to be turned on its head in this time of readily-available machine-made knits. It may be less expensive to make one's own handknits compared to buying handknits (but even that is not always the case) but no one can say that knit to clothe themselves or their loved ones more cheaply.

Now that the scarf is complete and the sweater is under way I find myself thinking about beads. Have you tried knitting with beads? I would love to hear about bead-knitting experiences before I dip my toe in that particular pool.

Gotta flit. Write me!


Friday, August 04, 2006

Lace Crazed

Just When I Thought I had Finished this Shawl---
I realized that there is something wrong with the pattern for the ending edging. If you compare the photos, you'll see that the beginning edging pattern (light turquoise) makes a well-defined point with shaping coming from a central column of slip 1, k2tog, psso. The edging pattern at the end has no such shaping, and any point is just an artifact of blocking. Well, after all the aggravation and bad language that went into this shawl, that crappy edging just will not do! I am working on a solution that will likely involve grafting (and more bad language) so stay tuned.

The green mohair fingers on the red table comprise my current mindless knitting project. The pattern is in Norwegian, but there is nothing to it but garter stitch, bind off, and cast on. This will also be a scarf, and it can be as long as 2 skeins will allow, or until I get sick of it.

Hanne Falkenberg has progressed as far as a 1.5 " swatch. If the gauge is off I'll have to buy another 30" circular needle, so I really hope it works.

Cathy, I hope your first day of school goes well. I'm looking forward to seeing pictures of your summer projects and really do want to get up to see the new house.