Saturday, March 31, 2007


Welcome to the Saturday of Yarn, Laughter, Creativity, and Shopping! Although this occurred last weekend, it is still eminently blog worthy. So how did almost a dozen members of my local knitting group end up in this wonderful Maine yarn shop? In a word, Spa. Connections made, invitations extended, and wallah, the merging of two knitterly communities. If you get the chance go visit. The owners and local knitters were warm, welcoming, helpful, and generous.
Here's the whole crew:
See all the smiles? Yes, we definitely were having a good time!
Lora, was seriously taken with this guy. She has definite plans. One of these will be morphing from her needles soon. She claims it is for her son. I'm not so sure...
I spent the day finally weaving in all the ends for the last of the three baby blankets. (The other two are here and here.) I love the final result. I might even be able to convince myself I want to weave in 29 yarn ends again! It was simple to make and the final piece is just lovely. I am lucky that one of the babies is indeed a girl. I wanted to make this one so badly that it was started on blind faith. I hope the parents to be enjoy it!
Of course there was some stash enhancement. How could one not sitting in the middle of all that luscious yarn? I showed restraint and purchased only two skeins. First, is a beautiful Frog Tree Pima Cotton in color 600 for a "secret project". I didn't know that Frog Tree made cotton yarn. The more I work with the products from this company, the more convinced I become that they can do no wrong. Great stuff.

As for the second acquisition - Cherry Tree Hill! Now, this is not a colorway I would normally have picked. However, I was specifically looking for a yarn that would meet the requested colors for my International Scarf Exchange 4 recipient. This is so perfect it is scary. Even better? The name of the colorway. Ready? Foxy Lady! I hope my recipient feels like one foxy lady when she wears the resulting scarf!

Last, but not least, I did the deed. The shawl is no more... I am somewhat sad to see it go. I know, though, that all is not lost when there is a plan for a new shawl in the offing. I will not give up!
Hope you all have a wonderful weekend, and I wish you "happy stitching"!

Saturday, March 24, 2007


Is there any rule that says "sock yarn" needs to be used for socks?

Exhibit A
The incredibly beautiful Sock Options yarn hand dyed by Heather of Sereknity and Serenkity Boutique. Just gorgeous. This stitch pattern came from one of those swatches that I was making at random. The moment I saw it worked up I knew it was the pattern I'd been waiting for to compliment this yarn. I'm going to miss this project when it is done...

Oh, and that thing under the yarn? A digital kitchen scale. It has already come in handy to tell me I have enough Sock Options to knit a scarf of 72 inches in length. A little weighing and a little math...wallah!

I decided I needed to invest in one of these when I kept finding patterns giving ounces or grams of yarn but no yardage. It is especially good for figuring out if I have enough left over yarn to make another project.

Exhibit B
Same stitch pattern with Socks that Rock. I am a STR virgin no longer! Thanks Gina for the amazing yarn. (Here I will shamelessly stop for a minute to plug Gina's wonderful Podcast...go listen! She also has some amazing designs for sale on her blog in the sidebar.) I can see why everyone loves STR now that I've worked with. Unfortunately, this is going back in the stash. I had surmised that the dark brown would dominate, however, it is serving more as a background color for the brights. It will have to wait for the right person or project. (I'll try to be patient!)
And lastly, a sad goodbye. I adore this yarn. I love the stitch pattern. I don't love the shape. Good yarn should not be wasted. So...I'm giving up on triangular shawls. They never seem to be shallow enough that they are the proper width and NOT down to my knees! When I get up the gumption I'm going to modify this pattern AC-31. Off to create Ramen and give my ball winder a workout!

Tuesday, March 20, 2007


Did I ever tell you I LOVE my part time job in a book store?Harloty goodness!! Advanced copy, totally on the up and up. I'm so excited!
The only down side? I must go to bed... Ack!
Sneak Peek!

Monday, March 19, 2007

Not Quite

Here is the first attempt at the "boy" sweater based on this one. I figured if I used the same technique for the yoke and then just continued straight it would work. Well, not so much. Without the flared bottom, the body is just too narrow. So, what to do? My first thought is to increase the stitches for the back and front panels while leaving the armholes the same size as they seem reasonable.

For those who are interested, the yoke is moss stitch and the body a row of double crochet followed by three of single crochet. I'm thinking the next attempt will be all moss stitch. This, however, means I'll either have to learn how to do a button band or use a closure that won't need one... I guess I'll cross that bridge if I can get the proportions to work! Wish me luck!

Saturday, March 17, 2007


Ah, New England. You know that old cliche that goes "If you don't like the weather, wait a minute."? Well, I think Mother Nature is having a good old laugh at us just when we thought spring was here. Snow and sleet and rain, oh my! Many inches of the stuff. It is late afternoon and I am preparing to slog my way through the mess to find my car. (Hopefully, it won't take too much digging to get out of my parking space...)

At least the snow has put me in the mood for ISE4. Yes, I have joined up with the International Scarf Exchange again. If I get my wish there will be some knit lace in my hands just in time for summer to begin. (LOL) I have so many ideas and am trying to be patient while waiting to find out who will be the recipient of some crocheted goodness from my hooks. The match up was delayed. Hope it is soon!

On the crochet front:

I finished my first pet snuggle from the avocado yarn from hell. It was free so I AM GOING TO USE IT even if the color is, shall we say, unappetizing?

I got two new books. I've been swatching from 101 Stitches for Afghans. The images are beautiful. The swatching has revealed that the images are greatly reduced. What looks finely wrought and beautiful is much bigger, bulkier, and has more space between the stitches when worked up. Now that I know what to expect I can see better how to use these wonderful stitch patterns. Finer yarn and smaller hooks have yielded the look I was going for. Now the only question is what to make!

The second book, so far, has been about dreaming. Since making the teddy baby blanket in fillet crochet, I have been hooked. (Pardon the pun). Jan Eaton's A Creative Guide to Crochet is just amazing. I love, love, love the lace patterns and am working up the courage to give some of them a try. I can see two things in my future: thread work and tapestry crochet.

Oh, the ever expanding horizons of adventures in crochet. Happy stitching!

Saturday, March 10, 2007

What's New?

Well, it may be time to upgrade the internet connection. Lately, going online has been a study in patience and frustration. Hence why it has been a full week since my last post! How am I posting now? Library. Love free internet. Internet that doesn't unexpectedly blink out. Randomly...

On the crochet front I have begun and frogged another baby sweater several times. I am trying to adapt one of the patterns for a boy's sweater. I have the yoke done and really like the look, however, keep waffling on the body. For a baby sweater does the bottom need to flare out or can it be straight? HELP! Please offer your experience. I could use some help.

While reading the latest issue of "Crochet Today" magazine (which I love and highly recommend) I saw an article on how to avoid sore hands and wrists. It gave a few warm up exercises and recommened wearing wristlets to keep the wrists warm and flexible. Ah, a good excuse to make some wristlets! In fact I believe that I will use the remainder of the Moda Dea washable wool that blogless Amanda gave me the other night for this project (hope there is enough!) It is nearly a full skein left over from the helmet liner my sister knit - Amanda rescued it with some judicious reworking of the opening. Thanks Amanda!

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Catching Up

She's baaaaack! Talk about frustrating when first Blogger then my internet connection were uncooperative so that I had to wait until today to post an entry. However, persistence pays off!

Does anyone have an opinion on ribbon vs. button closure for baby sweaters. Seems to me buttons would be easier, but I don't have a lot of experience in this area! LOL

So, as promised here are pictures (click for larger view) of the baby sweaters created over vacation. I LOVE this pattern. It was my first garment and I know I will make a ton more of these (as needed). The construction is such that the body is all one piece then the sleeves are crocheted from the opening down to the cuff. No sewing pieces together. Gotta love that! The yarn is Bernat Baby Softee Sparkle and I used a Susan Bates Size H hook. BTW the hat is the one recommended with the pattern.

And the second sweater pieces are worked but need to be sewn together. I'm saving this one for next week's knitting group as I am not sure I'm doing the mattress stitch correctly! This one has a destination: the new son of our school nurse! The hat is in process... This was not a difficult pattern, but I'm not sure I like the method of working the sleeve at the same time as the body pieces. I'll probably try it again with some bulkier yarn and see how it goes.

This project using Cherry Tree Hill silk is still in the "maybe I'll give up on it" category. I really need opinions. I just don't think the fillet crochet pattern shows up well enough. Thoughts?

Lastly, here is the hat I made at knitting group last Wednesday. It comes from this book and was really quick and easy. I truly love making hats. They are quick, will always fit someone so are low stress, and seem to come in an endless variety!

Well, that's it on the crochet front. Up next...I have finally dived into the avocado yarn my sister gifted me from the Salvation Army last summer. The first "granny" square is almost complete. Pics soon.