Wednesday, January 31, 2007

The Snowbird Has Landed...

I'm done!! super-de-duper!! Check this out the finished Fair Isle hat for Mac:



Do you see the joy...okay now it's gotten old mommy...time for the penetrating lazar eyes:



...that's the attention span for a 2 1/2 year old...



I bought the kit out of a magazine and it came with everything but the needles. I can’t remember the name of the magazine but the kit has a website and now that I've seen what they have...I might have to buy more;) Check out Knitwhits ...just look at the awesome creations. The kit name is Snowbird and I was impressed with how much yarn they provided. The pattern could be made for adults and children with tons left over...not enough for another hat, mind you but enough that there is no threat of running out. The pattern was easy to follow, but the decreases where a tad difficult and I just winged it towards the end.

Monday, January 29, 2007

Body Part Anyone?



Perfect for capturing knitted socks...only $10 bucks. It's also pretty cool that it has a weight on the bottom, so it's self standing!! If anyone wants one speak up.

The Mountain Color Clapotis

I finished the Clapotis this weekend, which means I also blocked it and it's looking super fabulous!!! Check out the pictures...

Here is the finished piece before blocking:



After a quick soak and now blocked out on the spare bed:



Here she is blocking completed:



And just incase you were wondering what it would look like on me:



I know I should have smiled, but seriously I'm happy on the inside:)

Here are some quick notes on the project.

Yarn: Mountain Colors Handpainted
Pattern: Clapotis found on Knitty.com
Adjustments: I skipped doing an extra two repeats on the section 1 and added exta repeats in section 3. I knew after blocking that this sucker would grow and boy did it ever.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

I Could Not Resist

and I apologise Stitch 'n Bitch gals...I visited The Fold and I'm hooked;) It's a bit of a ride, but so worth the trip. Kids where off to Grandma's and I wasn't sure of the next time I would be able to get an opportunity to buy a spindle before going to the Feb 10 spinning demo in Chicago. I wanted a chance to play and fondle some fiber before getting tips and tricks.

Theresa suggested that I check them out for there friendly service and great selection. So, I met Toni at The Fold and what a lovely person she is. Showed me around, helped me pick just the right weight and then demo'd the top spindle for me. I got a chance to test run the spindle and...it just felt right:) Look-ie what-I-got:



Cute bag, huh? The spindle is a Kundert Wheel made of ash wood and it weighs 1.4oz. Just loved the cherry and maple design. I then spotted a old copy of Knitscene mag. I was going to order this online, but when I saw it would cost me $5 to ship it I said forget it! I'm so going to knit the Central Park Hoodie...I even saw a knit-along that several other bloggers are doing...very cool.

The store has tons of roving and stacks of cubbies filled with yarn. They have lots of handspun, handpainted, Socks-That-Rock, Trekking and so much more...of course I couldn't walk away without buying some sock yarn;) What you see is Gypsy Girl Creations - die lot name is Iris. The colors really popped out at me...greens, blues and several slight touches of yellows. I so want to cast-on.

On other project notes...Clapotis is blocking...yes it's done. I truly think I've gotten faster. I'll have updates on that soon. Mackenzie's fair isle hat is 85% done...at the decreasing sections, which can be a bit tricky.

Till next time...

Thursday, January 25, 2007

I bought body parts...

In case you didn't know...Carson's downtown store is going out of business and they are selling everything. I bought this:



Not the child...the torso. I want to do stuff like this:



and this:



Mom and Dad love to make jewelry and I'm hoping to put a web page together and help sell this stuff for them. I love this idea of showing the length of the necklaces. It gives good perspective...although I'm going to need a new camera. The jewelry is blurry. I've looked into one and hope to get my hands on one soon:)

And of course I will be able to do this:



I might even go buy a foot...haha...that just kills me. Happy Friday Folks!

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Oh How Fair Is Your Isle

Okay...I'm so in love with this I can't even stand it. I casted-on days ago, took this picture yesterday afternoon to blog about how great the colors are coming out...



To then find myself unable to blog and ended up having knitted so much more. Check this out:



I'm at the point where I start my decreases...talk about a fast knit. Here is a picture I took while at the Stitches Salon...



I didn't take note of the designers name and for that I'm sorry, but it reminded me of stained glass and thought even of making this look like an abstract painting...how lovely it would be. Anyway...I digress. If your not familiar with this knitting structure, it's a fort about 2 stories tall covered with knitted spots of color.

Well...time to buggie off to the SnB tonight...

Sunday, January 21, 2007

GO BEARS!!

Not a stitch was dropped the entire football Sunday! –Bears vs. Saints– What a game and talk about some serious knitting time. Brother-in-law came by along with some of E's buddies from down the street. Chili - hot dogs and Becca's Peanut butter fudge (hummmm) filled our tummies.

The kids got out earlier today and played in the snow...check them out:




The playful actions of children in snow, get my knitting juices going...I'm pulling out this project and casting-on right away. My first fair-isle project and I'm so ready to get started. Isn't it just the cutest thing. It is still girlie enough right? I plan on making this for my little stinker.



Here's an update on the Clapotis done in Mountain Colors handpainted yarns. The color name is Mountain Twilight...deep blues, berries and violets – I'm on my second ball and on my way to having this done...oh joy.



I also forgot to mention that I spend my lunch hour at the Chicago Winter Delights Stitches Salon on Friday. I sat amoung beginners and experienced teachers...amoung other chicagoans and visitors form far away. I enjoyed every minute. I also discovered that I don't have to wait till Friday afternoons to spend time there. I wish they where there year round. It will be a sad day come March, when I wont be able to get away from the fast deadline world. Only complaint I have is that the flyer listing all Chicago area knitting circles has our SnB Tinley Park group meeting only on the last Wednesday of the month. I'll have to look into that....

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Mark it with a Stitch

Okay...I'm just so geeked that I figured out how to get my custom banner to work. I know, it's cool right? Mary Bridget inspired me to make a button for linking to my blog and it really got my designer mind boiling. Do you like??? Now, if you want grab the button..go right ahead, it's on the side, just scroll down some, then you can link to this blog. What fun:)

Now, as MB guess correctly...yes, the new project is another Clapotis from Knitty.com. The first one I did has a pic in my Finished projects, just click the links (incase you haven't seen me wear this thing since I knit it - gosh, I wear it everywhere!!) - anyway, I need markers to keep me in check and last time I used black rubber bands...but...they suck. They twist and turn and get caught...and lets not talk about taking flight on the train that one random day. Hahaha.

So, after getting back from Wed's SnB...I ran to my Super Walmart and grabbed some toggle's - incase your not familiar with beads and such...you've got to get some. There super easy to make and with a little time, you'll have your own stitch markers. I got the directions off another blogger and for the life of me I can't find the link...my bad - truly sorry.



Supplies needed (L-R Clockwise): toggles, crimper-thingie, wire cutters, file, 2 inch pin heads, small silver beads, larger color beads



This shows the progress of assembly...see it's not difficult.



Here are my finished markers...and here is the markers on the work-in-progess.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

I Have Zigged & I Have Zagged

Some serious happy sock dancing going on right now!!! I call these the Zig-Zag socks.



The yarn is: Lang's Jowell – self stripping yarn. It's very nice to knit with and I love that it comes with it's own reinforcement thread for the heel. Knitted these toe-up on two circulars and it took me 15 days to complete. Yes...I know...for ever!! Considering that this was the only project that I was working on...it's quite pathetic. I suppose I could see how fitting an hour here or there could shorten the time it takes me to do these. But seriously...I knit a row in 5 minutes, that is a complete round on both socks. That’s 144 stitches, which is 28.8 st per minute...if it’s 6 rows to the inch...then it’s...300 minutes!!! that can’t be right. Only 5 hours of knitting time. Hell, I know it took me 2 hours just to do two toes. Oh well...does it really matter in the end? I guess not.

Oh, yeah...started a new project as soon as these fell off the needles. Anyone want to guess?

Friday, January 12, 2007

Stitches Salon

What happens to my brain on Friday afternoons? Because I could serious kick my self right now. I headed out to lunch and while I was sitting in the basement of Macy’s cafĂ©, it came to me. I was suppose to be at the Stitches Salon and knit among the other Chicago knitters. WTF!! Did I have a brain fart? Oye, so I passed by...cute isn’t it!



Okay...aren't those huge needles and yarn just about the cutest thing you've ever seen???

I even walked inside where a handful of people where sitting around being taught to knit. Squeals of joy coming from the teacher as the student actually knitted his first stitch. His comment was... Oh, I get it, that wasn’t hard at all....like the light bulb went off and he sounded so pleased and ready to do it again.

The great space was surrounded by all kinds of interesting and creative designs...from a knitted teepee/fort, crocheted clothes, handmade jewelry and unique artwork. There is a super soft couch and lounge chairs with a fake fireplace that crackles...too cool. I really had to get back to work, other wise I would have found a spot and knitted some rows of the ongoing socks on two circ’s. I’m so going to put a post-it note on my computer to remember to go next week.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Needle Point?

My commute to work consists of me taking a 45 min train ride into Chicago. Hubby drops me off at the station at 8 am, where I board at 8:05. I sit in the first car of a 7 car Metra train and usually in the same seat as the day before. Out of habit or just plain familiarity, I've fallen into this certain routine where I put on my headphones and listen to a book on tape ~Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, right now~ then I pull out my current project and fall into a knitting zone.

I love my commute too and from the city. It prepares me for a day full of deadlines and unwinds me in the evening, before coming home to my family. Most of the time the train is completely packed, any available seats are occupied. These people have no concern for others...they talk on cell phones or to each other. I don't know about you, but the last thing I want to do early in the morning is hold a conversation about anything besides receive caffeine into my body. Thus the reason for the headphones. Knitting enhances my hearing and attention to details...and I find it hard not to listen to conversations around me...(Get to the point!)...yeah, I know.

Okay, so this morning is like any other...a lady sits next to me and all I see is her mouth moving and her hand motioning to my socks on two circ's. I pull my ear phones off and say "Excuse me?"

"Oh, that's interesting" this stranger says..."is that needle point?"

WTF! ~ I say to myself ~ "Nooooo, it's knitting." Hoping I didn't sound to evil. I then tried to explain how and why, but I see nothing but a deer in the headlights. She doesn't have a clue and there's no point in me trying to make this woman understand. I would love to explain that they'll will be totally exact when I'm done. That they'll be worn by my loving mother and hopfully will be enjoyed as much as I have enjoyed making them. That the loose hairs that have been knitted along with the yarn will bond me and my mother even closer then we are now. This stranger is a lost soul, poor thing. I wish I could show her the light, but alas I need to knit and get back to my audio book. Can you believe she actually thought it was needle point?

A status report you say...okay, here is my needle point:

Friday, January 05, 2007

Okay, I'm Falling In Love:)

Only thing on my needles, well...at least it's the only thing I'm concentrating on. I really wanted to see how quickly I could knit a finished pair of socks..and to make sure that both socks are equally the same, I'm doing them on two circ's. Any little moments I have, the socks get pulled out and add a row here and a row there. Delay on the commute into work, no problem more time to knit. Soup at Corner Bakery and I'm knitting like the wind and look what has happened... Yes, there socks...



Okay, so there not complete yet, but I'm soooooo in love with this pattern, yarn and my spontaneous knitting moments, that I can't help but gush:) I know the new owner will love them too....yes mom, if your reading this...your babies are almost complete. It will be hard to send these off, but I know you'll dig them as much as I do!

And guess what this little one is doing?



Being the star artist she is. My little Mac was silent...now when I say this you have to really understand that there is no such thing as silence in a house with a toddler. It was so silent that I heard the cat breathing from across the room. Well, Godmamma Karen (bless you) gave this to Mackenzie for the holidays and she was going hog wild. So, you know I got to knit in silence for 25 whole minutes? I hear you gasping...I know...I was impressed too. Dear Karen also came thru in the knitting department...just adorable.



Click Here to the designer who created this lovely piece of art. And the Winter Knits which has tons of cool patterns, I just can't choose which one to start!!

Happy Knitting!!

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

What? It Was Only A Swatch?

Yes, I'm afraid so. I keep knitting and telling my self it will be okay, it's not so big. I like baggie socks. I had gotten so far and the knitting was going so smooth. You know, I just might have to blame the zip-zag strip pattern. Yep, that's it, I was hypnotized.



Who wouldn't be just in awe of this sock...and mind you I have two of those on the needles. I was seriously knitting like the wind! Then I just frogged the whole thing...sigh. Put, I held my head high and casted on right away. I'm done with the toes and know it's just mindless stockinette till it's the proper length.



Now the big question is which color toe do you like? I have some time to ponder before short rowing the heel, but I'm leaning towards the blue, but I do like how the green is in order...a few more inches and we'll see how I feel then.

Monday, January 01, 2007

Happy New Year!

I hope everyone had a happy and safe New Year. I spent the evening starting some lovey self striping socks with hubby as the movies played on and on.



Done toe-up on 2 circ's - we'll see how quickly these get knit up. I've been concentrating on holiday gifts for the past 2 months and really need to focus on some unfinished projects. Do you remember the lace alpac pullover? I really need to pull that project out of the Time Out Bin.

So, goals or resolutions or 2007? I'm organizing my life. Knitting from the stash, setting up financial future and hopefully losing a few more pounds. I really can't wait to see what 07 has in store for me and my family - cheers to you and yours. Happy knitting.