Friday, December 25, 2009

It's Christmas!

Merry Christmas!
I hope you spend the day with a lot of family and a little knitting!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

My tribute to Sterling RIP

Fourteen years ago we found a 6 month old kitten in our neighborhood. She was a dirty matted angry little mess. I nicknamed her Grumpus because she was so combative, you couldn't even pick her up. Hissing, growling, scratching and biting were her calling cards. Two neighbors tried to take her in, but she was too mean to their other pets.

We named her Sterling and gave her a home, gradually she became a part of our family. She never lost that fierceness did soften a bit.

Seven years ago she was in kidney failure. The vet thought that she was a gonner. It was December and I just wanted her to last til after Christmas. We changed her to a prescription food and she got better. The vet says that you can live with 60% kidney function.

Sterling on 12/22/09

After 7 years on borrowed time, her health finally took a turn. Yesterday was our last day with her. She went out the way she was in life, growling, hissing and scratching...what an amazing kitty she was. We miss her.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Pattern love

We have a new yarn at the shop, Berroco Seduce. I found the perfect pattern for it on Ravelry. It's a free download, the pattern is called Modern Mermaid scarf. I have it memorized and between the easy, pretty pattern and this very lovely yarn I am seduced! I need to write Christmas cards and make candy and all those other things that need attention. Instead I am drawn towards this scarf!!!!

Those little mice are telling me to get back to Christmas!!! eeek!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Checking that list

I don't know about Santa's list...but mine is very long. I am chipping away at my personal list and the one I have for my job(s) at the shop.

The scarf above is "Babushka" it's a Mac N Me pattern. It was not difficult, but did seem to take for-ev-er. Starting from 3 stitches and increasing in seed stitch to 300! Then there was that nice ruffle! I really like it and will probably make one for me some day. This one is a model for the shop.

I used Alpaca With A Twist- Fino. and a size 5 needle.

That's my Christmas tree there in the background. I have to put presents under it don't I? Most of them have been bought, they just need to be wrapped. The candy still needs to be made and ....ugh I can't list the things that need to be done ...I think I just need to go do them!

Do you think there is a way to be completely prepared for Christmas without stress? How early would you need to start to achieve that?

I can check off the "make a blog post" entry on my long list. Now I have to go to work and teach a few women how to knit.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Thanks Pal!

Hey! tomorrow is Thanksgiving and I am short on time. I just wanted to send out a little thanks to my blog friends. I may not have a big following, but I do appreciate that there are people out there that read my blog!

Hope you have a wonderful day tomorrow with your family, friends and food. If you aren't in the U.S. why don't you try counting your blessings and eating too much tomorrow too!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

who isn't busy?

I need more hours in the day. Don't know how to get those, so I am throwing out a lame quickie post.

AND! no matter what I do to this picture it appears sideways!!!!!

So, you will have to tilt your head or your laptop. bleh!

the light blue thing is a poncho I just finished...I really like it.

The square is for a charity blanket for someone on Ravelry. The red is called Babushka. I'm making it for the shop.

the socks are being made with Paca Peds.
sorry about the no details and bad photo insertion. This is the best I can do with the time I have.

is it possible that next week is Thanksgiving?????? eeeek!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Dear Deer Hat

I finally finished this hat for my friend.

I had to complete a little child's sweater and repair a store bought sweater for two customers before I could complete this fun hat.

Here it is soaking in water before blocking.

The entire design can be viewed in my projects page on Ravelry .

I did a few modifications. I added ribbing on the bottom which meant I had to remove rows from the top of the chart. I'm really happy with the way it turned out.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

I love technology

On the left is the chart I am following for my hat. I kept ripping out the same three rows and finally figured out that my brain didn't like switching...dark yarn light squares...light yarn dark squares.

So- I opened it in PhotoShop and swapped the colors. Then I enlarged it. So much better! I think technology and good knitting go hand in hand.

The chart is obscured to keep it a Christmas surprise. You can see the full Monty in my projects on Ravelry.

I finished the lovely scarf. This photo doesn't really show the gorgeous colors. I decided not to block it. It's all soft and unstructured, I am looking forward to cooler weather so I can wear it!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Gauge Gauge Gauge

I'm starting a Christmas present. A hat for a friend. I'll have to disguise it a little to keep it secret. (If you are really curious you can see the entire chart on Ravelry)

Sally Melville said "The decisions made in the first hour are hugely important to the success of the finished product."

I think she was being optimistic on that time frame.

She's talking about that gauge swatch. It's something that no one likes to do, yet it is so important! I thought I could use that worsted weight yarn on the left. You see the resulting swatch. I did the math and had my friend measure his head and found out that I would have had to do a major alteration to the chart to make it fit.
So I chose to change the yarn. The DK weight on the right (Berroco, Pure Merino DK) should be the right choice. I am still going to swatch it up to make the final decision on which size needle to use.

I'll be happier with my finished product because I am doing this work in advance!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

No knitting: KITTY shenanigans

I got such a kick out of this Kitty I thought I'd share it with you.

If you don't like cats, move along...nothing to see here.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Wee toe-up

When I am not working on the two scarves I've been writing a pattern for a toe-up sock class. Here is the wee sock that we will make in class.

The one on the bottom has a stretchy bind off. I put a backwards loop in between the knits and purls in the row before the bind off. You can read more about it here.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Knit me out to the ballgame!

A quick post. I am on my way to a Doger game this afternoon. I'm looking forward to some funky stadium food and good company and that long drive with two hours to knit!

I have made some progress on my scarf and started another (for the shop) The red one is Twisted Sister's "Mirage" yarn ...the pattern is called Gilda. I am having issues with the fact that the pattern says it uses only one skein of yarn and I am certain that this scarf will be quite short. We will soon see.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Needles and post SS pics

I had to use my new Signature Needles right away.
They are 7" long and size 7. The yarn; bought at SS, hand dyed by Teresa Ruch it's two bamboo and the other tencel.

The pattern for the scarf I am making out of this glorious yarn is Palette from Knitty.

The needles are a work of art. As short as they are they have a quite heft in the hand. Probably too slippery for this yarn, I'm happy to ignore that to use both of my new goodies. Lovin' both the yarn and the needles. As I like to say "buy quality and cry only once"

This is Kathleen Taylor. I've been reading her blog for a long time. Her "The Big Book of Socks" just came out and I highly recommend that you get a copy. You can see that she has a sense of humor. She appears to have knitting needles through her head! This shot was taken at SS... I semi-stalked her. (semi= no restraining order)

As we were leaving Oregon I stopped in Ashland to visit my pal Karen's favorite Oregon yarn shop; Websters. It's very pretty. I didn't buy much considering all that I had already purchased.

Even though I HAD to buy more yarn than I had intended, due to the theft of my's not without trepidation that I post a picture of what I bought at SS. Here goes....behold the stash enhancement!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

We have a winner!!!!!

I used both low and high tech methods for choosing the winner of the contest. I wrote down the names of all of the commenters in the order that they were made.

Then, I used a random number generator to pick the lucky person.

#19 is iamtheinfidel. I will contact her and mail the lovely Lorna's Laces yarn.

Thank you all for leaving comments! It made my trip way more fun knowing that there were folks following my trip to Sock Summit.

I will say that next ti
me (if I get a chance to go again) I would love to have friends actually there to share in the fun and awe.

I still am catching up on my sleep. Not to mention all the paperwork I have to do to turn in to the insurance company to replace my stuff.

I have some pictures that didn't get posted while I was in Portland. Stop by later, I'll be posting them.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Last Day of SS09

It was a lovely day.

I had a class with Crissy Gardiner. She taught us how to do a textured colorwork. It is in the Bohus style. (pronounced: Bo-hoos) It's really like Fair Isle knitting except that there are purls along with the knits to add a color and textured effect that is really cool.

Here is my little sample

We left the class a little early and went to the Marketplace. I bought more stuff. I picked up a copy of Free Range Knitter (ya, that's right... the one I brought from home was stolen) I snuck over to Stephanie at lunch time and showed her my pen and the book. she stealthy signed it so as not to attract a gaggle of women asking for the same. She is the nicest person anyone would ever want to adore like a teenybopper.

Click this picture to make it big. This is the Luminary panel. I can't explain sufficiently how awesome this event was. We laughed and nearly cried and hung on every word. Every dime I spent on this event was worth just this one moment with these incredible women. I got a front row seat to witness the brilliance.

Today is 99 years since the birth of Elizabeth Zimmerman. At the very end we all sang Happy Birthday to her and had cake.

A perfect ending to a fabulous 4 days of knitterly fun.

oh more thing.....

I scored this!!!!!!!

We came out of the elevator in the hotel and this was just sitting there. Sweet!

Getting up early tomorrow to drive half way Home.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

A quick exhausted post

It was a long but terrific day. This is Lorilee Beltman. She taught the morning class, Seismic Socks. She showed us how to do a vertical stranded design. It wasn't as hard as it might seem. she is a good teacher and I suspect she'll write a book about this technique.

I was a few minutes late to both of my classes due to breakneck shopping. Lunch was a yummy taco bar.

Sivia Harding is a modest, sweet lady and a great teacher. We learned to do a beaded baby bootie. I got snagged a couple of times and didn't get far on mine. I will finish the pair later, I really love the pattern. There was a gal in class that is a super speedy knitter, she finished a bootie in class.

I had dinner with the Hubby and arrived after all the swag bags had been passed out at the Ravelry party. I chatted with several ladies that I had classes with. There were door prizes ... I didn't win anything.

as you can see there was a big crowd.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Friday Fun Day

After a quick walk around the Marketplace before my morning class, I decided that I needed a strategy for the afternoon. I figured I could wait until the very end of the Book Signing time slot to get my books signed. The thinking there was that the lines would be short at the end which would give me lots of time to browse the marketplace. That plan worked like a charm.

The class was satisfactory. I didn't really learn anything new. The teacher was nice, she had a good Power Point lecture on fixing common mistakes and how to determine if you were a "fixer" or a "fudger". Turns out I am in the middle of that continuum. (that word doesn't look like it's spelled correctly, but spellcheck says, yes. )
We all left a little early for the Guinness Book of Records event.

Heather (who was in my class) and I got great seats right behind the teachers. At first Amy Singer (of fame) was the only one in the teacher seats. When I asked her if I could have a picture with her... she insisted that I SIT ON HER LAP!!!!!

Stephanie got up on the podium and was her typical hilarious self. There were Guinness people to make sure that it was legit. There were big time camera men types. There were lots of ladies standing in the front of our huge crowd taking pictures.

that's Amy Singer in the lower left hand corner)

We all knitted for 15 minutes and I think we can be pretty sure that we broke the record. Wow, while I was googling to find out what the old record was I found THIS . You can hear and see the Harlot for yourself and if you look closely you'll see me.

See that yarn in my hand? That is the yarn that I picked for the BLOG PRIZE. It's Lorna's Laces dyed just for Sock Summit. The lady who dyed it signed the label and is posing with me for this pic. Don't ask me her name I'm sure she told me, though.
edited to add: She is Beth Casey the owner of Lorna's Laces. Duh!

I got in some good shopping. Briar Rose laceweight and an Ann Hanson pattern. Also a little Silk and Cashmere for a cowl from Red Fish. I bought a lot of little notions to replenish the long list of stuff that got stolen.

I had lunch with some ladys that I know from Ravelry. That's Monica on the Left next to Marie. It was like meeting old friends for the first time.

As I had guessed, half and hour before the Book Signing was over I had time to walk to my hotel room, get my books and walk right up to the tables and get autographs.

First Was Anna Zilboorg, she wrote "Knitting For Anarchists".

I had Barbara Walker's "Book One" to be signed, I didn't ask her for a picture since I had already asked last night.

Then the beautiful, gracious and funny Meg Swanson. I asked her if she felt like a Rock Star. She said she did!

Then I just came out and asked for a picture with the Harlot.

I hope to get a little more sleep tonight. Two classes, and the Ravelry Meet-up tomorrow.

I am not a morning person

Let's see...I went to bed at 1:30am....woke up at 5:30 and I don't know how much sleep I got after that....then got a wake-up call at 7:00am. I wanted to be certain to get a ticket to the World Record Attempt.
I am taking "Getting Out Of a Mess" class at 9:00.
Gonna do a 30 min. walk-about in the marketplace before class. Yesterday I just kinda got saturated and my brain wouldn't let me buy more stuff, I was overwhelmed and exhausted. So, I hope this coffee kicks in and gives me some Super Shopping Powers!

The book signing is in the afternoon.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Opening Day at the Summit

My day started out at Starbucks for coffee and a scone. Then, I arrived early at the convention center to do a little people watching. This is Meg Swanson she is fast on her feet and had a melodious "Good Morning!" for Stephanie.

Jess and Mary Heather look adorable and that's "small Bob" on my finger. (you can click the photos to make 'em bigger.) They gave me a new Ravelry button.

My first class was with Charlene Schurch.

OK- the name is Swiss-German and the "S" is not pronounced. She mentioned that first thing...evidently everyone asks her about her name.

I learned a lot about making socks last longer. Established that I probably should use a size 1 and go to a zero just on the areas that I tend to wear out. she showed us several styles of socks that are best depending on where you get wear on your socks.

During the lunch break I took photos of some of the lovely socks!

Next was 4 ways to do a toe up sock. we were supposed to be really comfortable doing Judy's Magic Cast-on. Some of the students needed a little review, she is showing the cast-on in this pic.

Of all the stuff I learned in this class my favorite is the idea that her cast-on can be used as a provisional cast on. BRILLIANT!!!

the Opening ceremony was a touching recount by Tina and Stephanie of how this whole extravaganza came about. Written with the Harlot's usual brilliant humor, it was quite hilarious and at the end touching. They thanked each teacher by name and when they got to Barbara Walker there was a standing ovation.

Oh ya ...Barbara Walker....she's the person I am standing next to in this photo.

I shook her hand and then stammered like a goober. It was great!

After that I chatted with a few people and watched the shmoozing. Then walked to the hotel where there were knitters in the lobby. One lady there was massively full of herself..... I think she invented spinning... she has wheels custom made for her by God himself.

oh ya, I forgot to mention that I did a little shopping:

see anything you like?