Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Look Ma, No Fingers!

I adapted "Moya's Orpah-Annie Fingerless Gloves" pattern for my granddaughter, Aubrey. The gloves are made using a variety of sock yarns, giving them an eclectic, colorful look.

The work on the needles is pair of adult sized gloves, almost half-way completed, to give you an idea of size.

I seem to accumulate more yarn, patterns, needles and other accoutrements of knitting than I actually end up with in product, but reading this from the Yarn Harlot's 2009 calendar gave me comfort ~

I no longer make resolutions about my knitting. I don't say, "This year I'm going to get the stash in order" or "This year I'm going to alphabetize my patterns," and it's been many years since I swore that I would have fewer projects going a once." It's not that I've given up, since I'm not the sort, but rather that a kind of acceptance has come over me. I am a knitter. This is what it looks like. Anyone who thinks it's too much, or too messy, or too unfinished ... Well, they should just be happy that my passion is for lovely soft yarn and beautiful sweaters. After all, it could be much worse. I could have these same feelings about cabbage.

I was talking to Meaner the other day, though, and we both acknowledged that if we want to give socks as gifts for Christmas, we really need to start knitting them in January, given our lack of ability to stick with a task for long and the fact that we both have several people wanting socks. My other problem in making items for Christmas is that when I'm done with a project, I want to give it right away. I've never been known for delaying gratification, either my own or yours.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Mean finishes a project

Knitting is very conducive to thought. It is nice to knit a while, put down the needles, write a while, then take up the sock again. ~Dorothy Day

I made this sweater for my grandson, Mason. I just finished it. I told my son, Mike, that when Mason grows out of it, I have too much time invested in it to simply throw it in the Goodwill bag. It may be a simple little project for experienced knitters, but anytime I finish anything I'm amazed and have to have the proof around for awhile.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

It's been like forever

I'm sure we are all busy working on knitting projects. Me? I'm regretting not starting on those ten pair of Christmas socks back in July. Even if I had, I probably could not have held on until Christmas to hand them out, so, oh well.

Meaner's been knitting madly for her new great-grandson to be and finished up the sweater and hat to go with the lovely blanket in the last post. Here they are ~

Here's a shot of the beanie standing up. Obviously, it will be much cuter with a little noggin inside it !

Mean is working on yet another crocheted afghan (among a half-dozen other projects) ~

I just ate three oatmeal-raisin cookies for breakfast. That's not a bad thing, is it?

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Together Again

It's been awhile since I've posted a blog entry, but we've been busy, busy, busy with Dia de los Muertos. Time to put the dead to rest and get back to the unique creativity that winter and knitting provides.

Karen made this lovely mint green baby blanket for her great grandchild, who is not here yet, but will be soon. She's making a sweater to match. I'll post a photo of that when it is finished ~

I'm still working on my son's afghan from the Babette's blanket pattern.

Yolanda has a scheme to get us together this coming Thursday to all start a "Design your own sweater" in the round, based on a video she watched at at Easy Knitting Design.

I look forward getting together with the sisters again.

Nonknitters can think what they will about the value of knitting on earth, but know this: No knitter will ever depart the earth without leaving evidence behind.
~The Yarn Whore

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

I can only imagine ...

how huge I'd be if I didn't knit. Apparently, the Hippest, Old-Fashioned way to keep from overeating is to knit. Maybe if I could knit my jaw shut, it would prove to be true for me. Personally, I don't think you are an accomplished knitter until you've learned to purl and eat Cheetos at the same time. Yes, I am that good. And, yes, I am fond of orange yarn.

In other knitting news, Karen (aka "Meaner") and I (Linda, aka "Mean") finished making shawls from the free Lion Brand pattern, Spendid Triangle.

The pattern called for using Lion Brand Homespun yarn, which neither of us have had great experience knitting with. Karen used an alternative bulky weight yarn from Lion Brand (Jiffy), but wasn't pleased with the results. The pattern pops out with this yarn, but it isn't as soft and flexible as Homespun.

Meaner went with Homespun on her second attempt at this shawl. It is really lovely. If you use sharp pointed needles such as Denise or some other brand, it is much easier to knit Homespun. Forget about crocheting with that yarn, though. It's a biatch.

Here's Karen's second shawl in a beautiful green and then mine in variegated fall colors.

When Karen was trying to add some line to her Denise needles, she accidently pulled a large portion of the shawl off the line. This is her cussing and trying to fix her mess (hee hee) ~

Oh, and to leave you with a smile, here's a photo of my grandson, Mason, shaving with his "da dee." (When you maintain the blog, you get the privilege of occasional lapses into cuteness.)

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Meaner's Entrelac Scarf

Karen finished the scarf she's been working on. It turned out beautifully.

What's next, Karen? Where's that afghan you've been working on?

This is ... something ... something very strange that creeped out of one of Yolie's many bags of yarn when last we were at her home. I'm not sure what it is, but if you see it, poke it with a stick to see if it moves.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Since you last joined us ...

The sisters got together at Ms. Yolie's house for another knitting session. Well ... actually we really got together to see this little one ~

Meet, Daveena Honey, future Knit Sister

We did a little knitting, Laurie a lot of untangling, Ms. Yolie some organizing, and Meaner gave crochet instructions to Sue.

Doesn't Sarah look like the Knitting Madonna? Don't let that calm, cool demeanor fool you. She's as feisty as the rest of us.

But, mostly, it was all about Daveena, who, as you can see, got a little tired of the attention.

Since our last gathering as Knit Sisters, Maureen, the official Non-Knitter sister, and I joined Ms. Yolie at Pismo Coast Village where Yolie did some knitting around the campfire. A serious knitter will have one of these ~

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Meaner's Been Busy; Sisters Pushing Tattoos

Karen decided to give the Fan Bookmark by crochetroo a try. She did a great job on them, using some beautiful variagated yarns.

Then she turned her attention to a fun crocheted bookmark pattern called The Golden Bookmark. Karen crocheted the bookmark up in red, rather than gold. It makes a dramatic statement against the written page.

All in all, she had a busy bookmark day.

Ms. Yolie sent out an image of a tattoo she suggested the sisters get. I'm pretty sure there are only a few of us who'd be game for a tattoo, but I think this one is pretty groovy.

Laurie found this one and all I can say is that this is a very dedicated knitter ~

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Mean and Meaner and the Two Beautiful Step Sisters

Some of the Knit Sisters got together at Yolie's house last night to work on our projects and visit. We got a whole lot more visiting and laughing done than knitting, which is what makes it such great fun.

Karen working on her latest crocheted afgan. "Colorful Squares Afghan" published in Donna Koolers Crocheted Afghans.

Karen and I took one of the finished Babette's Blankets for Yolie to see. She loved it and immediately envisioned getting rid of all of her scrap yarn to make one for herself. The only problem: She doesn't crochet.

Yolie working on a poncho for one of her grandgirls.

Yolie asked me to show her how to make the squares, but I suggested Karen help her instead since she is a far more experienced crocheter than I. As Karen was instructing, Yolie got frazzled and Karen got more direct in her directions. Finally Yolie turned to me and said, "You didn't say she was mean." I replied, "I didn't say she wasn't mean. She's meaner than me, but she's a better crocheter."

Sue was working on a simple lacy shawl pattern in greens.

Then Sue arrives, sees the afghan and wants to learn to crochet too. Yolie turns to her and says, "Who do you want to teach you, Mean or Meaner." We howled. So, I'm afraid the Sistie Uglers have forever been dubbed Mean and Meaner. The truth is Karen is one of the kindest persons I know. She's all bark and no bite. Me? I'm a barker and a biter. ;)

Karen showing off the entrelac scarf that's a work in progress.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Mark this spot

Little Sister, moi, made this cute, old-fashioned fan bookmark yesterday evening from a free pattern by crochetroo. You can find the pattern by clicking on her name.

It didn't take very long at all to make up, but I confess that I am crochet pattern illiterate. I usually have to work at something and tear it apart several times before I get it right. The fan bookmark was no exception. The next one won't be nearly as difficult now that I've got the idea down.

I'm giving the bookmark to a friend who is celebrating a birthday. I think she'll appreciate a little home made giftie. At least, I hope she does.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Big Sister's Fingerless Mittens

The original pattern on these fingerless mittens called for doing up the pattern in a variety of sock yarns. Karen made these in one variagated sock yarn.

You can find the recipe in PDF version here: Fingerling Fingerless Mittens.

The idea for Karen's gloves was derived from a great little project packaging idea we purchased at ABC's of Creative Pursuits. You pick out six different yarn cards for the eclectic look and get them and the pattern in a fun tin box for only $18.00, yo!

The photo is borrowed from the Creative Pursuits website.

The Sisters Finish Their Blankies

When I think about when we started this project, I'm a little amazed that we tore through the building blocks and piecing together so fast. Maybe it's because Karen and I were doing this together. Maybe we spurred each other on. At any rate, we are done with "mostly" the same blanket. Here's Karen's Babette Blanket ~

Both Karen and I redid one or two blocks to better fit the project. Karen's blanket has a more colorful border. First she single crocheted with black and then two rows of double crochet with lime green and pink. Her border really pops!

Here's my version of the blanket. A bit more subdued, with one row of double crochet in tan.

Karen wasn't as impressed as I was with our accomplishment. I guess that's because she's a far better crocheter than I, but personally I think we deserve medals. (I guess it should be pointed out that I think we deserve medals for any finished project, but that's just me.)

Friday, June 19, 2009

Chevron Scarf

I finished knitting a small version of the Chevron Scarf (recipe below). It became tedious knitting for me, but thankfully I attend to even more tedious things that require me to sit and listen, so out comes the knitting needles ~

I plan on knitting a pair of fingerless mittens out of the same yarns. They won't take nearly as long as the scarf.

As promised, here's the recipe:

Chevron Scarf

This scarf can be done in two widths, the small scarf is 4 ¼ inches wide and the large is 5 1/2 inches. Both are 78 inches long.
Yarn: Two 300 yd. skeins of contrasting fingering weight yarn. Do NOT try to match the yarns – make sure that there is a LOT of contrast. If the yarns “match” you won’t be able to see the chevron pattern.

Needles: US 5 straights or circular

CO 36 (48).

With Color A do 4 rows of Reverse Stockinette. (Purl one row, knit one row, purl one row, knit one row.)

With Color B:

Row 1 – K2tog 3x (4x), K f&b 6x (8x), K2tog 6x (8x), K f&b 6x (8x), K2tog 3x (4x).
Row 2 – Purl

With Color A:

Row 3 – Knit
Row 4 – Purl

Repeat Rows 1 through 4 until scarf is 77 inches long or until you are sick of knitting, whichever comes first.

End with Color A – 4 rows of Reverse Stockinette.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Charm Over Perfection

Making this blanket, adapted from Interweave Crochet's Babette Blanket, has been one of more fun projects I've done, probably because Sis and I are making it at the same time. While we do noodle out the details together, I generally rely on Karen for making final decisions. She is a far better crochet hook wielder than I am.

Karen and I crochet at different tensions. I've adjusted crochet hook sizes a few times, but we are just going to end up with an irregular look when all is said and done. I think it will add to the charm of the blanket. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Releasing ain't easy

For the inexperienced knitter, letting go of a finished product isn't easy. The hours and hours that you spend with the project seems to instill in you the right to keep everything you make, even if it is something you have absolutely no use for in your own life. This baby blanket, for example ~

I decided not to go with the leopard print lining as I had planned in my previous entry, opting instead for a traditional "girl baby" color.

I had to hand sew the lining on to the blanket. First, my sewing machine is on the blink, and second, I thought it might look a little better. Hopefully, the stitches will hold up to actual use. It's actually quite small. By the time the weather is cool enough for a blankie of this heft, it may be good for nothing more than changing a diaper on.

Other than the smallness, I was pleased with the final result. And, since "Mommy" showed proper pleasure with the gift, releasing wasn't as hard as it could have been.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Yarn is like crack for old ladies

In keeping with Savanah's remark to my sister, Karen, and I about our addiction to all things yarn, here are a few projects that we've worked on and am working on ~

1. The first one is a baby's blanket in a simple basket weave pattern. I'm going to line one side of the blanket with a soft material. I'm finished except for the lining.

2. The second project is called Babette's Blanket, from a crochet pattern printed in Interweave Crochet. The photo of the finished product is from Interweave. We are just starting. The basket contains some of what we've done so far. Karen and I are doing this blanket together. She's a much faster crocheter than I am, but I'm a better weave-in-the-ends person. :)

3. This is an Entrelac Scarf I finished about six weeks ago. It was a bit of a challenge for me, so I was proud that I was able to come up with a finished project.

4. And, finally, a beanie I knitted for the little round-headed boy, Mason. Odds are that it won't fit by this winter, but it's his anyway.