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Saturday, October 19, 2013

I know, I know, it's been a long time . . .

I haven't been idle, just too lazy to post.  I have a pile of things I've knitted since I last posted. I didn't realize how many until I took them over to a friend's house to show her. I also wove some kitchen towels when I got back from Scotland on May 1st.  Retirement is busy busy - doing fun stuff - stuff that makes me too busy to blog. 

So much has happened since February, I don't really know where to start.  When I was vacationing in Tenerife with my family in March, the house we were staying in got robbed.  Within a couple of hours after arriving.  So disappointing to start your vacation with all your electronics stolen.  People must have been casing the place, knowing when people arrived at our vacation villa. And the puzzling bit was that they stole my knitting bag with a half finished shawl.  The shawl was made from hand painted yarn in reds and oranges and was turning out really pretty. So, of course, when I got back to England, one of the first things I did was to take a trek into London to buy yarn. I started another shawl but in a different pattern - the Color Affection shawl. I knitted on this for the two weeks we were touring in Scotland in mid April and finished once I got home in May. 

When I got home on May 2nd I started thinking about a weaving project. So I gathered a bunch of cones of gaily colored cotton and after much research and playing around, found a wonderful pattern in a digital booklet I got from Interweave called Winning Towels, the pattern we chose was Global Warming Reminder towels.  There were about 15 towels in the booklet.

So , from this point on, over the course of the summer I knitted a couple of shawls. One was from a kit I bought at a cute little knitting shop in Aptos, CA, called Yarns by the Sea.  It was a little extravagance on my part. This little kit was, for me, crazy expensive but I thought it was so pretty and it would be a project I didn't have to plan. This little shawlette is called the Jewelled Scallops Shawl:
The next shawl was from Cascade Ultra Pima Cotton and is called the Miami Beach shawl.  It's in a really pretty violet colored cotton:
The next project was done because I wanted to learn a little more about Saori weaving from my friend Jill Sanders who owns Saori Santa Cruz. She has a lovely dream studio in her home in Felton, CA. I spent about a week with her weaving and sewing this vest. I used warp from Jill but most of the rest of the weft yarn was from my stash. The pattern was from one of Jill's Saori weaving books. The vest is open in the front and in the back on the other side. It's quite a puzzle to put on.
Somewhere in between the above projects I knitted a pretty vest in chunky wool. The pattern is called the Montague Vest. 
Next I knitted a little shell out of Berroco Bonsai ribbon yarn. The pattern is called Badia, and is a free pattern on their website.  It was a fairly easy knit and it feels drapey and nice:
The last thing I knitted was the Jolly Roger Shawl. It's a free pattern on Ravelry. You can't see it from the photo but it's got little red beads for eyes. The body is of acrylic/alpaca yarn from Michaels, kind of fuzzy and the white jolly roger part is made from white thick/thin handspun that is merino and silk:
That's it for now. I'll try to keep the blog more up to date so that I can talk more.  :o)

Sunday, February 17, 2013

I can't believe it's February.

I just looked at my last blog post and it was in November!  Boy does time fly.  I have been in the middle of a big project to catalog all my yarn the last few weeks.  I wanted to do a sanity check before Stitches West next week and I think I'll be finished with this project before I get there.  I'm going to be in the market every day and although I might buy yarn, I certainly don't need any.  I'm taking pictures of it and putting it all up on Ravelry. I'm putting it in my 'Stash' pages, if you are interested.  I'm Loomitic there.

Here are a few of the things I've finished in the last month:

Daryl Lancaster designed vest. I took a 2-day vest workshop with her a couple of weekends ago, which was a lot of fun. She custom fitted a basic style to all participants, adding or subtracting from the basic pattern in certain spots. Mine was a bit of ease in the rear of the jacket. I wonder what that says?

Sorry, I couldn't figure out how to rotate the pictures. I've tried in a couple of ways to do it but it doesn't seem to work and there aren't any tools in the program to do rotations. I used to be able to do it but I can't seem to today.

The next thing I finished (in January) was this:

It' a vest called the MontagueVest from the New England Knits book. It's super comfy. It's made from a chunky yarn called Kathmandu Chunky (Queensland Collection). It's a pretty easy lace knit and took about 2 weeks to complete.

The last thing I've done recently is a Mother Bear.  I finished it last night by putting a face on it.

The photo could have been a bit lighter, but you get the idea.  There is a project called the Mother Bear Project from Minneapolis, MN. Amy Berman is the lady who started this to give bears to children in Africa who have been affected by AIDS.  This little bear is only about 12" tall and takes a couple evenings to make while watching TV.  I'm a bit slow so it took me about 4 nights, which includes one night just to do the face. I'm not very proficient at the faces yet, but I'm sure I'll get better over time.

That's about it for me at the moment.  Here is little Ella in the hat and sweater I made for her for Christmas 2012:

This is an inkle band that I made in January 2013.  Daryl Lancaster encouraged me to start doing inkle bands as trim for garments. This is a first completed piece that I might actually use some time.  It's quite pretty although I didn't realize that it would look like a flag with the colors I chose:  black, violet and cream.
I just realized that I hadn't posted a photo of the Austin Hoodie I finished in early January.  It's made from Madeline Tosh Merino Light - Lichen colorway.  It took me from last July till January to finish this. There were many thousands of stitches in it and it was something like 6-8 stitches per inch: