Saturday, November 1, 2008

More from Rhinebeck 2008

Allrighty, here are the pictures I promised. I will post the "in progress and FO's as I start and complete. The only thing is, I bought more yarn at work to do a February Ladies Sweater, and that is what I am working on now. Also in progress are September Rockin' Sock Club socks (one sock 3/4's done), Gossamer Stars Scarf from Summer 2008 Interweave Knits (5/8's done), Adult Surprise Jacket (10% done), and couple of other socks that I work on when the mood strikes me.

I'm tired of tak
ing pictures, but I will post pictures of my UFO's next week - Now for the good stuff!!!! First is some beautiful Gnomespun 50/50 Alpaca/Bluefaced Leicester - incredibly soft & given to me by CathyCate.
Next is m
y weaving project - the class I took was taught by Eileen Easterly from Millpoint Emporium. That cute little ball is my most indulgent purchase - Qiviat/silk from Windy Valley Musk Ox. The photo doesn't do it justice. The color glows like a jewel. Then comes the luscious Springtide Farm cashmere.

Please click on the pictures to get the full effect!

This ceramic bowl, with the sheep design is designed to allow you to knit from a round ball of yarn without having it skitter all over the floor. Notice the "J" shape carved into the side to the side to feed the yarn. Ingenious! From Jennie the Potter.
Next is Briar Rose, my favorite of the show. I even ordered some more that had been sold out. You must click on the link - my picture does not do it justice! All of these yarns are incredibly soft and the colors are to "dye" for. Chris, the owner couldn't be nicer. I'm not sure why I bought the yarn in the next picture, I will probably make a heavy sweater.
It is from Seacolors.
Holiday Yarns completes the purchases. They are formerly known as Vanacler Acres and are home to the Tsock Tsarina. The 4 little skeins in the center make the "Iceman" sock pictured.
Last but not least is the swag that was given to me by my wonderful housemates Socktopus - the cute bag, sock key chain/needle sizer & a skein of Malabrigio sock yarn and Misknits - the adorable Sock
Monkey Project Bag.
We all had a
fabulous time and I can't wait for next year!

Thursday, October 30, 2008


So, I am finally updating this blog and isn't it great to be telling you about my wonderful trip to the New York State Sheep and Wool Festival in Rhinebeck NewYork. The SockStars and I rented a house in the woods of Red Hook and my what a house it was. Here is a picture of the house and the views from the house.

We found a great little coffee shop in town for our morning caffiene and muffins. Taste Budds Cafe & Candy Shop is worth a visit when you are in the area.
We were also lucky enough to get reservations at the
Culinary Institute of America in the American Bounty Restaurant. If you ever have plans to visit the Hudson River Valley area, you must make reservations for one of these restaurants. They are staffed by the students and the food is delicious, the prices reasonable and the service impeccable. Here we are with our waiter, Ryan. We were in the last seating of the evening and I am sure that we got a little rowdy by the end of the meal. Those students were great and we got to speak with many of them. I am sure that they will never think of knitters again without thinking of us!
Here's a little yarn tease - I will post th
e rest of the pictures on Saturday! On the top is Blue Moon Fiber Arts Eggplanted in Twisted, Jabberwocky in LSS and Dixie Chicks in Heavyweight STR. On the bottom is a Merino/Tencel blend sock yarn from Ellen's Half Pint Farm. If you are jealous now, wait 'til Saturday's post!!...................................

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Ravelympics and Karen's 3Day Breast Cancer Walk

Karen's 3Day Walk

This year, my cousin Karen Michalak will take part in the 3Day Breast Cancer Walk for the fourth straight year. She and her daughter and hundreds of others will walk 60 miles over the course of 3 days to raise money for Breast Cancer research and education. They will sleep in tents and shower in trucks at the end of each long, grueling day. In the past, they have walked in sweltering heat as well as in drenching downpours. For three years I was there to see them walking proudly across the finish line. Their only reward is knowing that they have done something to benefit others. Please follow this link and make a donation to help Karen reach her goal of $2200.00. Every donation counts, no matter how small.
I thank you, Karen thanks you and your daughter's will thank you.

I have entered the 2008 Ravelympics under the auspices of my good friend mismalice and TEAM SOCKTOPUS! My events are Shawl Relay and WIP Wrestling. I am doing the Heartland Shawl in TwistedFiberArts Shiny in the Giles colorway and the WIP is my DancingLeafFarm Vest. I have started a Flickr Set HERE and will add pics as I progress. I am afraid that I may have to unravel and begin again on the vest. I finished the back section and it is entirely too long. That is why it has been languishing in the bottom of my knitting bag since April. You may remember that I had started the Heartland a while back, but the false start should not count, since I have unraveled and rewound and am poised to cast-on anew! I was using US #8 needles since the US #7's were tied up here:

This is a beautiful scarf pattern from the last issue of Interweave Knits. I am more than 1/2 done, but it will have to rest on some stitch holders while I prepare for the Shawl Relay. Anyone who is registered with Ravelry is eligible to sign up for an event. The rules are that you start on 08/08/08 and must finish by the closing ceremonies 17 days later. This will be quite a challange for me since I am such a slow knitter. Stay tuned for my progress!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Four Cousins and a Funeral

Here is a picture of the completed EZ Baby Surprise Jacket that I promised a couple of days ago. Unfortunately, a little family business delayed the finish of the jacket. Of course, the fact that I decided on the I-cord bind off also took a lot of extra time. It's worth it though, what do you think?
A sad thing - an aunt died, that was the "family business." It seems like the only time our family gets together is for weddings and funerals. I hope the next event is a wedding! I did get to see my favorite cousins and catch up on their families. They are all grandparents. That would make me feel old, except they are all older than I am anyway. (ha,ha)

Now that I am finally finished with the jacket, I find that the intended recipient will be too big by the time it is seasonally appropriate. You know, when I was with my cousins, my cousin Donna said that it looks like I was the only one to inherit our grandmother's knitting gene. It reminded me that our Nana was not a gauge knitter. She made a sweater and you were lucky if it fit. She made me a beautiful tennis sweater once, when I was around 12. I think I wore it once before I outgrew it! I was lucky to get some sweaters from my cousin Joanne as she outgrew them.

Speaking of knitting(!) this is what I have on the needles now - 2 socks (different), 1 lace scarf, 1 lace shawl (I finally started the Heartland KAL from Ravelry) click here for free pattern, and the EZ Adult Surprise Jacket that got sidelined for the BSJ. Stay tuned - pictures of all to follow.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

10 inches!

10 inches might not seem like a lot, but that is exactly how many inches SHORT I am on my latest baby surprise! It takes around 400 yards to make a BSJ and I always have some yarn left over, so I just knew that 372 yards would be plenty. Well, guess what?

I even cut off the several inches of yarn that I had hanging from joining the second ball and spit spliced them onto the end - still too short. [loud scream] NOTHING in my stash to go with this gorgeous hand dyed Bee Bop.

I went to the KAL at my LYS tonight and found a good solid color to use to do the cast off. I started to do the cast off and planned to do a crochet edge around cuffs and collar to pull it together, but now I am thinking of an i-cord bind off and trim. I am posting no picture today - keep your fingers crossed for a completed picture tomorrow.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Happy Independence Day!

Life in a small town, like Wenonah, has many advantages, one of which is the best little Fourth of July parade in the country. Many homes (like mine, above) are decorated for the holiday and the whole town shows up for the parade - either as participant or spectator. Those unfortunates who have been forced to move away, come back to celebrate. The festivities start at 8 AM with a canon blast and progress through the day from the early morning parade, to the speeches in the park, on through the annual community party at the firehouse (don't forget to buy your commemorative beer mug!) and ending with a 5K race and a concert in the park. Amongst all of this, it is traditional for some to eat their way from backyard to backyard throughout the day.
It rained a little, but the parade went on as usual. Luckily, the weather cleared in time for the speechifying and Kevin Mullin presented Bob Shryock with the Home Town Legend Award. Bob's humorous speech included the fact that he was Kevin's first basketball coach.
It's hard to describe the atmosphere in Wenonah on the Fourth of July. The town is alive with excitement. The kids are getting their fire truck rides, the adults are milling about in front of the fire house, people you haven't seen all year run up for a hug. This year was my twenty second Independence Day in Wenonah and I hope to be here for many more to come!
You can see more pictures here. And oh yes, this is a knitting blog...
Dancing Leaf Farms, Bee Bop Superwash Merino in Copper Canyon Colorway - EZ's Baby Surpise Jacket for my cousin's grandson.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

The Graduate

Well, last week my dear nephew Sam graduated from High School. His older brother Dave is on the right. They belong to my youngest sister, and the one on the left is Zach, the son of the middle sister. Yes, we are three sisters, my father was very lucky! The graduating class was over 400 kids and there were 7 salutarians. (You can imagine how long the ceremonies were.) Well, dummy me, I left my knitting in the car! Each graduate was called up, individually, to collect their diploma!

I am doing a KAL at my LYS, The Knitting Store. I had never made an EZ Baby Surprise Jacket. Well, here is my first effort:

This has to be the cutest thing I ever made. I used 4 balls of Berroco Love It Colors, 3293. I have to say that the color change on this stuff is really weird. There is one big stripe of the contrasting color, in my case blue, in each ball. Each ball has 120 yds and it looks like they just wound the120 and then cut. The balls start in different places of the repeats and one ball only had a few inches of the blue at one end! Since they are pull balls, this unusual color change is not immediately obvious. Luckily, on this small of a project, I was able to work it out, but in a larger project, I think you would have to be very careful. I started another BSJ from my stash. It is a beautiful hand dyed superwash from Dancing Leaf Farms. It is a gorgeous color called Copper Canyon and you can see it here.

Of course, since I took 2 skeins from my stash, I had to immediately purchase enough to start an adult version for me.
Here is the yarn that I chose for the adult version:

This picture doesn't do the colors justice. The main colors are really teal and a rich chocolate brown. Claudia Handpaints and some Cascade 220 for the solid accents. There will be more on this in future posts.

Well, I am off to finish the BSJ...

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Finally, I start my blog!

A couple of months ago, I happily attended the BMFA Sock Camp at Orcas Island, Washington.

Due to the miracle of the Internet and Ravelry, a group of sock knitters from all over the country (and abroad,) met to have a little yarn crawl before camp.

We met for the first time at breakfast and proceeded to tour the yarn shops of Seattle and environs on this Shorty School Bus, generously provided (and driven) by MJ.

Sock Camp was amazing! We learned a lot, had great fun, and made some wonderful new friends.

Thanks to their encouragement, I worked up the courage to tackle my first big lace project. The pictures of this effort follow, from the soaking to the blocking to the final beautiful shawl. I am so proud of it! I wore it the AC casino and also to my nephew's graduation. The pattern is Shetland Shawl from the Interweave WRAP STYLE book. I used two skeins of Hand Maiden Double Sea Silk, Sapphire colorway, on size US 8 Addi Lace needles. Enjoy!