Friday, April 25, 2008

Springtime Knitting

I’ve spent most of this week trying to decide what to knit next. I finished the Lace Ribbon Scarf and am very pleased with it, but it has gotten too warm to wear it now. I thought I would make another one in cotton but nothing in the right color was in the right gauge and I wanted to use my stash. I looked through magazines, books, Ravelry and web sites for patterns. I really don’t wear summer sweaters and it is too hot already to knit with wool. I have a ton of scarves, socks, mittens and hats. So I decided to make a bag.
At the last wedding I went to I carried a hard metal case clutch bag and it actually shed all over my black skirt. Little flecks of gold were all over everything. I couldn’t even figure out where it was shedding from. Also, it was too small to carry anything after I put in my camera and lip gloss. So I searched all over and found the pattern for Square Cake from Knitty. Instead of using the Tilli Thomas Disco Lights, a yarn with sequins, I found some Debbie Bliss Cotton Cashmere in a soft green in my stash and combined it with a strand from an old cone of metallic gold called Callenzano from Silk City Fibers. The gauge is right and I am making it in the smaller size. Cotton is not as dressy as silk would be but it may pass. If the bag comes out great but it is not sleek enough, I may spring for the Tilli Thomas and make another one. A trip to Montclair where there are two great yarn stores is not too much trouble for me at all. The bag is a fast knit and I don’t need it until the end of June anyway. It may also make a nice holiday gift for someone at work.
A colleague and I bought new tiny digital voice recorders for work. Last weekend I made a few sock covers for them. They were really quick and I was able to use some leftover Socks that Rock. The hardest part was finding D-rings to attach so we can keep them on our key rings.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Two Years, Let's Celebrate

Today is my two year blogiversary. Hooray! I’ve kept up for two years, although I have been lagging a bit in posting lately. My son helped me start this blog because I wanted to join in swaps and KALs and I needed one to join them. Now I look at this as a way to link with the thousands of other knitters and bloggers around the world. I actually spend more time on Ravelry than on this blog, but I like knowing it is here and I can show my FOs and share some stories and pictures with my friends and family. Two years has been both a long time and the blink of an eye. My life and circumstances haven’t changed that much, which is for the best. I did try a few new knitting techniques and projects. I have, I hope, mastered lace and finished two lovely stoles, even if I have slow down if I don’t want mistakes. I’ve also discovered luxury yarns, for better or worse. Somehow I can’t even touch acrylic anymore and Malabrigo is the yarn of choice. I made a cashmere hat and hope to be able to use more of that in the future. I’ve tried silk blends and even sea silk, but I love to knit with wool the best. I’ll keep trying to find a lightweight summer yarn though. Cotton is usually just too stiff but I intend to try some new blends.
My immediate goal is to try to reduce my stash. I’ve got a lot of basic wool yarn and a few odd balls of interesting Noro and some blends. It is so tempting to buy more, especially since I may visit the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival for the first time and will probably go to Rhinebeck again this year. Also, I have discovered two lovely yarn stores in Montclair, NJ, about a half hour from my home, and they both have great selections of tempting yarn. I have a bad habit of keeping every last little piece of every yarn associated with every project. All these little odds and ends and left over extra skeins have made my house pretty messy. I’ll try to part with some of these soon, just not yet!
So here I am, hopefully for at least a few years more. And here is my latest project, my finished Mr. Greenjeans cardigan from Knitty. It took a backseat for a while due to Malabrigo March and I had to force myself to take it up again but I am glad I did. It is very comfortable and was certainly easy to make, thanks to almost no finishing. Sometimes sweaters made in the round seem like they will take forever but when they are finished it is a pleasure.
I don't want to forget to add a thank you to my husband for most of these lovely pictures, and also for the pride and appreciation he shows at every thing I make. Oh yes, and for driving me to every yarn store and festival I can find.
So here is to a lot more finished objects in the future, and to all of you who read this blog. I don’t know who is out there, but I am sure it is a friend.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

March Is Over

March is over and so is my Malabrigo spree. The idea was to cast on as many items in wonderful Malabrigo yarn as possible. It was a lot of fun making so many great knitted things even if it was getting a little hard cranking them out at the end. Koolhaas was my favorite thing to knit in Malabrigo. I made four of them. A Better Bucket came in second. I made three of those. All together I think there were about 12 projects. I intend to use them as presents but it is going to be hard to give them away.
Now I have to get back to a few left over projects. First is Mr. Greenjeans. This sweater has been ignored in my bedroom for a whole month and I only have one more sleeve to go. I am not too excited about it anymore but I am going to make a big attempt to finish it soon. Also, I had a lot of lovely Kashmir left over after my stole so I cast on for the Lace Ribbon Scarf from Knitty. It is not complicated but I do have to pay attention to the yarn overs. So far I am enjoying it.