Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Wednesday Website

Not a knitting website, but a really cool one to watch and read about!

Monday, February 24, 2014

Yarn Crawl Shopping!

I love our yearly knitting weekends.  We always start on Friday morning and crawl our way to our destination by visiting yarn shops along the way.

Friday, we started at a shop in Edwardsville IL.  I cannot believe I didn't buy anything, but it was early in the morning, and I was saving myself.  The next stop close to St. Louis, was a bust as they were closed as in closed for good.  I hate to see that.

Knitorious was next after a quick lunch at Arbys.  We really wanted to get to as many shops as we could on Friday, so we could spend time on Saturday shopping in St Charles itself.  I had found my way to Knitorious several years back when I was in St Louis for training.  They have quite the selection of yarns and patterns that would take you days to look through.

I found a little shawl that I bought yarn for that I thought would be fun to do.  The shawl is Vintage Colors Shawlette by Helen Rush.  It caught my eye as we were almost ready to leave and I picked up the yarn for it - Ty-Dy Socks Skinny Stripes and Cozette.  I am excited to start it for Spring but right now resisting the urge.

Hearthstone was next on the list.  At the same training as above, I also ventured out to Hearthstone.  It was not my fave shop back then, but I have to say, my opinion has changed since.  They had a bit more depth to their yarns this time around, or maybe, I just knew what to look for now.  Either way, I did not come out empty handed and I have to say the owner is such a very nice pleasant lady!

For ages, I have wanted to knit the Warren Jacket and try Tahki Yarns Ripple yarn out.  I do believe this Taupe color way is going to be a great all around Spring jacket.  Best of all, it was a dollar cheaper than another shop that I had seen Ripple in.

I just could resist this lovely yarn.  It is going to be a cowl that was a free pattern with purchase.  I am not sure that I will get it knitted yet this year, but it will be great for next year.  And just maybe, I will find a nice aqua coat to go with?

And no trip should be complete without buying a book, now would it?!  A little something I am going to put away for next winter knitting.

We tried to go to one other shop on our way down, but by the time we got there, it was closed.  And I was okay with that.  Knit and Caboodle was still open when we got to St Charles, so we bopped into there for a quick look see, but frankly, I was done shopping for the day, so I manage to get out scot free!

Now, you might think that was the end of the yarn shopping, buttttttt, since Knitorious was open today, we stopped there one last time.  We were all looking for something a little more.  And I was ever so pleased that we did stop.

I have been wanting to knit Miss Mona Lisa and sweater out of this color way of Liberty Wool and was so pleased to find it there at Knitorious.

And just as I was checking out, Pam held up this yarn.  I could not resist for Christmas 2014 knitting for either my daughter-in-law or Miss Mona Lisa.  They are Iowa Hawkeye fans so how cool is it to find a yarn just for them.

I am quite pleased with my purchases this weekend.  Not too much, not too little.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Meet Me In St Louis

Technically, our knitting weekend's final destination was St Charles, but we did a bit of shopping on the way through St. Louis knitting shops.   Tomorrow, I'll post all the lovely yarns I found.

We rented three guest houses, this was the one I stayed in for the weekend.

Do you not just love the front door and shutters!  This is what I want to do with my new front door when we get it.

Our back door opened to the river where it was just a short walk down to the shopping in St. Charles.

Sue and I shared the downstairs bedroom which was quite cozy and warm.

Downtown St Charles has so many quaint shops to go through and a yarn shop too.  I spent a morning down there, but what I really was there for was to kick back and knit, which I did.

I just love these brick sidewalks and buildings.

This archway led to the river view.  The weather was in the 50s and sunny and so Spring like.  I wish I would have tucked in my running shoes, it would have been nice to do a walk along the river.

I love these old brick buildings, so reminiscent of colonial years.

It was a wonderful weekend spent with the friends and knitting and oh yea, Sue introduced me to


Friday, February 21, 2014

Olympic Knitting Finito Friday

My Elizabeth Zimmermann Baby Surprise Jacket is finished.  And during the Olympics too.  I really thought I would have had time in the two weeks to knit something else, but that just didn't happen.

The yarn is from Chris at Briar Rose Fibers , please check her out!  She gifted me this skein of Fourth of July, in 2012 when Miss Mona Lisa was born.  I was kind of worried that I wouldn't have enough to finish, but her skeins are so generous that I have some left over that I might make her some mittens or a hat to go with.

Onto the next project which is for me!

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Gone Knitting

And shopping and yarn shopping and having fun with the Knit Wits!

Will blog about the trip at the end of the weekend!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Wednesday Website

Sun Valley Fibers

Sun Valley Fibers has a booth on vendor day at Knit Camp.  I love her yarns!  And she will be vending on Saturday at the Pipeliner Retreat next month.  I am so excited to see her two times this year!

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Purloined Pictures

I am borrowing purloined from the Knitmore Girls.  They use it as a segment on their podcast.  Today's post has purloined pictures that I thought were kind of fun to blog about.

It was such a hoot, to tune into the Ice Dancing the last couple of days, and see knitting.  To the casual viewer, it was probably no biggie, but to a knitter, we could recognize it and shout out that it was Fair Isle.  

Are these not the coolest?  Hanging  between buildings on Coimbra Street, in Portugal.  This one purloined from Facebook.  I am not sure if is crochet or knit or some other form of needle art, but I could see doing something like these around a patio in the summer time.

At the top of the Snow Boarding course, the Finnish Coach is knitting a long white scarf.  Okay, that coach gets it  - it probably was a long wait at the top through all of the different runs.  How cool is this for all the world to see??

And finally, Miss Mona Lisa in her last year's mittens and her beret.  I cannot believe she is still wearing them.  And word from her parents, she loves them.  Makes this grandma's heart feel good.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Almost Finished Olympic Project

I just love the funky way this jacket goes together.  You have to knit it just by blind faith and following the directions.  That is what EZ was all about.  She made us think as knitters. 

I do have to admit though, if I had not made this before I might just have a bit of a problem  as to figuring how it is supposed to be folded together.

 I left my increase markers in place on the right side to make sure that I remembered which was the right side of the garment.

Et voila, added a little 8 ridge collar on it to finish the neckline of it.  I just need to find 5 buttons to go on it, block and mail it off to Miss Mona Lisa as a belated Valentines sweater.

This is going to be perfect for early Spring wearing for her.  That is if Spring doesn't get flooded out.  We are expecting another 3-5 inches of snow with sleet again today.   Sigh.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

I'm In

We got the email on Friday, Valentine's Day.  Linda and I are both going to Meg Swansen's Knit Camp 2.75 again in July!
No, not this kind of camping! Instead, we will be at the Holiday Inn Marshfield where the only thing I have to worry about from Thursday afternoon to Monday morning is what I am going to knit on during the day, what I am going to wear and where we will eat at night.

We've met some great friends and we are totally looking forward to seeing them again in July.

So, as soon as my Ravellinics project is finished, it will be time to get back to thinking about Camp Show and Tell and Contest entry.

Is it July yet?

Saturday, February 15, 2014

A New Ring

On my commute to and from work, I listen to podcasts through my bluetooth.  On a recent one from the 
Knit More Girls, Gigi mentioned a cable ring.  It sounded kind of interesting so I bopped on over to the site, and bought myself one.  It came in this nifty little sparkle organza bag.

The really cool thing about this ring is that I could actually buy it in a size 5.5 that works great for my middle finger, right hand.  Normally, I would have to go to a size 6 which would slide around and not be very comfortable or handy.

Isn't this cool?  I can't wait to try it out as a cable needle.  Convenient and useful and pretty neat to look at.

You can get one too, bop on over to Leslie Wind and see it and some of the other really cool things she has.

Super quick service and fun clasps, closures and sewing up needles handcrafted by her.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Monday, February 10, 2014

Sorry, We Are Closed

There was a major water main break in Peoria which meant that we were without water, something there has to be for us to function.  All of the staff and students were sent home around 11ish.  And since I am technically not in patient care, physical plant or security, me and my staff were out of there!

I took advantage of the afternoon to knit on my Ravellinic project.  I am now up to the increase piece of it.  I should have technically been doing some work, but I was able to monitor some emails and answer some phone calls while working on my Baby Surprise Sweater in the comfort of my fave chair, blankie and coffee.

It was a really nice quiet afternoon enjoying the day and the knitting.  Makes the coldest day a really quite nice reprise from work for at least an afternoon.

Tomorrow, it is back to work, but I will need to pack some drinking water since we are under a boil order for at leaf 36 hours.

Sunday, February 09, 2014

Speaking of Olympic Knits

My Ravellinic project is bit slow going.  There are so many other things that are catching my eye right now that I want to be knitting, but we'll talk about those at another time.  For now, here is just a bit of what mine looks like.  I am part of the Briar Rose Fibers Group over on Ravelry.  Chris is a friend from camp who so graciously gifted me a skein of her 4th of July yarn the summer that Mona Lisa was born.  It is a deep rose and I have been saving it for now so I could knit EZ's Baby Surprise Jacket for her.  Mine is going to be of the Child's Surprise Jacket, since 4th of July is a worsted weight yarn.

Okay, I am sorry Ralph, but your sweater is just too much!  

 However, I am loving the hats on the Slovenians that I see on the ski slopes.  I am just loving the colors.

What I love about the Winter Olympics?  All the wonderful hats and scarves that you see on the spectators and on t.v.  Check this one out seen by Mary C. tonight.

Looks like it is all in garter with the design from neck to arm, and flip back collar.

 I am so thinking this one is better to knock off than Ralph's.  Sorry again, Ralph.

Saturday, February 08, 2014

The Perfect Saturday

Cheese Popcorn for Dinner

Thin Mints for dessert

Stash Enhancement

Knitting with friends at the shop

Laundry almost done!  Ahhh, a perfect Saturday.

Friday, February 07, 2014

Finally Finished Friday

I count it as finished even before the blocking.  My Downover is finished!  This was such a fun knit.  Very much a sit and watch t.v. knitting project or even in public.  If you are so inclined, it would be a good Olympic knitting project.

I used Cheryl's Just Beautiful Alpaca in Silver and Black.  It fits the bill as a great quirky shawl and one of the pieces to go over a Knit and Fit ensemble that I have ruminating in my mind.  I am hoping to put it on the blocking floor this weekend.  Then it really will be finished!

Thursday, February 06, 2014

Baring It All - Almost

Part of my whole Knit and Fit philosophy for 2014 was to knit sweaters that look good on me and fit.  Sometimes that is very hard to do.  Not because I don't have the tools to do it, but because sometimes I just want to throw caution to the wind and knit what everybody else is knitting because I like it.

I envision in my mind, as many of us do, that I look like the model in the photo and so I can wear the sweater as well.  Problem is, you know and I know that isn't the case.  On Sunday, with the help of Baby Boy B, I took some pictures of my profile and side view as Amy Herzog in her Knit to Flatter book and Craftsy Class suggested.

It is not a pretty sight, but because I want my blog to represent what is going on with me and to use it as a diary of where I am today, I am posting the picture.  I am hopeful that when I look back in 2015, I see a bit of a different body then the one that I am seeing today.  Of course, with the hands spread out like that it does enhance the roundness of those hips.

I am thinking that I really like the side view, much better than the full front view.  What I see from this, which is something I already knew is that sleeveless is not for me and I wonder if it is possible to lose some of that arm fat at 56?  

The whole point of this exercise is to figure what type of body I have, which I already knew, but the pictures really drove it home for me.  Amy in her book and Craftsy Class really zones in on the types of sweaters that each body type should wear and what lengths both the sweater and the sleeves should be at for each of the body types.  She discusses neck options and shaping and just whole lot of different ways to make sweaters look good.

The only down side for me is that the sweaters in the book that were for my body type really do not float my boat.  But, the newest thing out from Amy is her Custom Fit website.  By putting in my measurements and my swatch specifics, I get to have it generate a pattern for any one of several standard sweater types.  Yes, there is a charge for each pattern you generate, but I thought it was worth a try on my Madlinetosh that I have been having a devil of a time trying to find a pattern to go with it.

More hours in the evening and weekend have been spent on trying to find a pattern that would look good on me and use less than 1700 yards.  Finally, after coming up with bupkis, I decided to take my swatch and try to come up with a pattern on Custom Fit.  

I am not sure that it is going to be 100% stockinette, because the single variety of this Madtosh I am pretty sure is going to do a little pilling.  I am thinking of incorporating into it, the stitch pattern that Bonne Marie uses in her Uma, maybe at the hem, neckline and sleeves.

What I am really going for in this sweater is this look.  Something that I can wear for early Spring and Spring should it ever come.

A nice casual day and weekend sweater, stay tuned.