Sticking to the Plan

Oddly enough, I actually find myself exactly where I want to be with my projects at the moment.

Let me savour this strange feeling for a minute…

**deep breath**

Okay, that’s enough ๐Ÿ˜›

This week’s plan was to finish the WendyKnits’ KAL Summer Mystery Shawlette (aka my “Lucky Penny Shawl“), get as far as I could on my Dreamscape Shawl (“In Dreams Mystery Shawl“) and start on the Christening Set for my nephew.

Here’s how I did:

~~~

Lucky Penny Shawl

As I mentioned in last week’s post, the main part of the shawl (clue 3) was to be released later Thursday afternoon.

Lucky Penny Shawl - Clue 3 complete

It was done by Friday night.

The final section was released around 5pm tonight (my time) and took about a half hour to finish it off.

Lucky Penny Shawl - Complete

Blocked to within an inch of it’s life and completely dry by dinnertime.

Final measurement on it is about 56″ x 26″. Not too bad, but I do wish that I had done the extra repeats since I ended up having about a third of the ball of yarn leftover.

Oh well, into the Patchwork Blanket project bag it goes.

~~~

Dreamscape Shawl

I’ve been going great guns on this shawl since last Saturday.

Clue 5 took a good 2.5 days of fulltime knitting:

Dreamscape Shawl - Clue 5 Complete

It was at this point that I suddenly discovered that I had accidently deleted any and all Clue 6 emails without actually downloading said clue.

My normally rational zen mind shattered.

I flipped out. Full on Kermit flail.

After some rather panicked emails to the designer (Susan, you are a SAINT!) and a very large serving of chocolate pudding, I was back in business.

Dreamscape Shawl - Clue 6 Complete

The last 2 rows of Clue 6 were finished this morning.

Clue 7 is printed off and ready to go. I hope to have it finished by Monday or Tuesday.

Oh, and Susan? I owe you martinis and cabana boys. Seriously.

~~~

Christening Set

The first part of the set, the bonnet, is off the needles and awaiting silk ribbon.

Christening Bonnet - Complete

I cannot *begin* to tell you how difficult it is to photograph 3-dimensional lace objects in this yarn.

Here is a picture of it before sewing up so you can actually see the pretty:

Christening Bonnet - pre-finishing

That line above the leaf motifs? Knitted pin tucks. I am so proud ๐Ÿ˜€

The rest of the set is going to be altered a wee bit. I’ll be doing the same as many others have done and combining the bodice of the jumpsuit (with shortened sleeves) and the skirt of the overdress. Then work a pair of simple “longies” (pants w/feet) for underneath.

It’s a bit more of a user-friendly option I think.

Crossing my fingers it’ll all be finished before he’s born.

~~~

Quick and Dirty (Clean?)

BadgerDan prefers to wash dishes with a plastic scrubbie (*shudder*).

I ethically refuse to buy any more of them from the dollar store.

So I made him a tawashi out of some leftover Red Heart SuperSaver:

Spiral Scrubbie

He’s happy – I’m happy. Win-win.

~~~

Coming Attractions

The next Windsbraut Shawl KAL will be starting tomorrow (Windsbraut “Bertha”).

My SKA socks for this month will be “D-Man” by Lykkefanten for BadgerDan.

The June Woolly Wormhead KAL Hat is the Tebe Slouch which I quite like.

Yarn options are still pending.

I may or may not get to them next week – we’ll see.

~~~

Furkid Update

Little Miss Lilith seems to be settling in very nicely and is holding her own with the boys. There’s quite the personality under that shy exterior that is showing itself a bit more each day.

She loves to hide behind curtains and suddenly attack or chase Maverick, Tomi and her toys. Lightning fast and super quiet – we have dubbed her “NinjaCat”.

We think it’s funny as hell – 13 yr old half-Siamese Tomi is not as amused.

~~~

Until next week…

TTFN.

Published in: on June 2, 2011 at 11:39 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Shining Star

Too tired to be much more than random this week. I’ll do my best to wax lyrical in future posts.

~~~

Completion!

The last three days have been a slog but… it’s finished. After 14 months it’s finally finished.

I give you Evenstar in all her majestic glory:

Evenstar Shawl Complete

It’s knit in vintage winter white Bucilla Wondersheen Super Mercerized Cotton (so vintage in fact that it proudly declares itself “boilproof” on the label) on 3mm needles.

I can now move on to the rest of the Christening set for my future nephew.

Compared to the shawl, the christening set should be a cakewalk. I hope.

~~~

Spinning

This weeked I spent some quality time with my wheel and some pretty blue Corridale:

Handspun Blue Stunner

The roving is from Lakehouse Loft and is called “Blue Stunner”. Totally lives up to it’s name ๐Ÿ™‚

Spun on my wheel and then plyed on my new favorite plying spindle from Highland Handmades, it’s 111g/205yds of 2-ply in approximately a DK wt.

Delicious.

~~~

Quickie Project

I love making bags. I just do.

This was Saturday’s project:

Spiral Berry Bag

Spiral Berry Bag

It’s the Spiral Rib Bag from One Skein by Leigh Radford.

A good use for an orphan skein of Cascade 220 Handpaints that didn’t match ANYTHING ELSE in my stash (col. 9926 “Cherry Berry”) and even though the pattern didn’t call for it, I handsewed a liner for it:

Spiral Berry Bag, liner

Denim was the only choice in my mind to go with the yarn, made from an old pair of jeans.

A great small muckabout purse that can double as a project bag. WIN!

~~~

Sock Progress

The Crocodilian Socks are coming along slowly. I did a repeat or so when I needed something mindless to work on (generally while watching the NHL Playoffs).

The May Mystery Socks have been retitled “Bliosรกn Socks

Janel revealed the name of the pattern with the second clue – “Artichoke“. “Bliosรกn” is artichoke in Irish Gaelic.

I haven’t had much time to work on Clue 2 in the rush to finish Evenstar, but I did manage to complete the chart for the first sock:

I think I’m going to continue the pattern on the leg by another 3″ to make it a comfortable height.

Will work on them tomorrow.

~~~

New Arrivals

A pretty pair of Peacocks were waiting in the mailbox yesterday:

Highland Handmades Peacock Roving

I couldn’t help it – I had to get the Tussah silk too. I am a weak, weak woman.

We also gained a new furry member of the family on Tuesday night.

Lily

Meet Lily. She’s a 2-3yr old tabby and used to live with my 87yr old MIL who could no longer care for her properly.

She just loves BadgerDan and, well, she didn’t have anywhere else to go.

Maverick and Tomi seem to be taking the news of their new sister fairly well so far. The boys are giving her a wide berth and the growling and hissing has been pretty minimal. Give it time.

~~~

Until next week…

TTFN.

Published in: on May 12, 2011 at 9:59 pm  Comments (4)  
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And on the 8th day…

…she blogged.

My personal mission this year will be to knit/crochet only from stash and get it down to the point where I can upload it to Ravelry.

I make the following exceptions for Stash Enhancement:

1. Thriftstore yarn.
2. Discounted oddballs @ 40% off or more.
3. The occasional ball of happy dishcloth cotton.
4. One or two splurges (aka sock yarn) on Worldwide Knit in Public Day.
5. Any yarn won in a contest/draw.

I think this is a feasible, realistic plan that I can follow.

In keeping with this plan, I hit the ground running (or crocheting) this year:

The January Squares for the 2009 Sampler Afghan are the first FO out of the gate:

January Squares

Followed closely by a completed Lopi Vintage Vertical Stripe Afghan! Yep. Done.

VVS Afghan - Complete

What had been taking me *forever* to complete ended up taking 4 days (I had to give my hands a day or two of rest in between sessions) to complete. And holy smokes – what a stashbuster!

The Lopi stash which once looked like this:

Lopi Stash

is (after setting aside what I need for my Hemlock Ring Blanket) now down to just this:

Lopi Stash (Post-VVS)

Not a bad start I think.

Speaking of the Hemlock Ring

I’ve managed to make it to the first Feather & Fan repeat:

Hemlock Ring

My Seaweed Socks are done too!

Seaweed Socks - 1 Seaweed Socks - 2

First Pair of the year. (And super comfy too, I might add.)

I have signed on for the 2009 Monthly Dishcloth KAL Challenge over on Yahoo! rather than doing the Weekly one this year. This means only 2 cloths a month and those are done 10 rows at a time with my morning coffee. Infinitely more manageable and those not to my taste can be given away as gifts.

January Cloth #1 – Ice Skate Dishcloth

Ice Skate Dishcloth

Completely by chance, I stumbled upon Clue one of the Sock Knitters Anonymous Ravelry Group‘s January Sockdown! Challenge. They have the occasional Mystery Sock KAL and this month’s KAL is a beaded lace sock designed by Sheryl Giles (aka Emm1e) who also did the Zombie Socks for last year’s Sock Madness 2.

What can I say? Mystery? Beads? Lace? SOCKS? Potential Prizes? Umm…yeahhhhh…

Beaded Mystery Socks - Clue 1

I’m soooo loving these socks! Already halfway through with Clue 2 (which was released today). Gorgeous.

The socks beckon…must go knit now…

And see if Maverick will let Mommy put the blanket away…

Maverick on VVS

Published in: on January 8, 2009 at 11:05 pm  Comments (1)  
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A little bit of this and a little bit of that…

Oh, and I forgot to tell you about a hat!

Holiday Halfdome Hat

A Halfdome for my sister’s boyfriend. He’s new to the family and since we want to keep him, I broke out the “good stuff” for his hat. That’s 100% Sublime Cashmere Merino Silk, my friends. If Elizabeth Zimmerman is correct (and she usually is), I should have him wearing Lopi in no time ๐Ÿ˜‰

I was digging around in the leftover stash yesterday (always cheers me up when I’m feeling grumpy) and decided to line up some sock projects to use up some of the accumulated oddballs. I’ve fallen way behind in the 52 Pair Plunge II, where the current count should be at around 30ish and I’m only at around the 15 pair mark.

Matched up 4 pairs worth in fingering weight:

Oddball Socks - 1

and 2 pairs in worsted weight:

Oddball Socks-2

Those are, of course, for *after* I finish knitting the socks that are currently on my needles:

Seaweed Socks Highland Hose

Seaweed Socks
(ArtYarns UltraMerino 4) and Highland Hose (Hayfield Falkland) – yes, I’m knitting kilt hose. For me. It gets cold in this apartment.

And speaking of cold…my Plurk buddy and podcaster Knitting Purls is putting together a blanket for Warm Up America.

I don’t have much of an acrylic stash left, but still managed to find enough to contribute a 7″ x 9″ “square” to the cause:

KP-WUA Square

To keep it interesting I used an easy washcloth pattern (Tiny Cables by Nanette Blanchard) with a cast-on of 36 stitches. (I added a border of 2 ridges of garter stitch on the top & bottom and 3 stitches of garter stitch up the sides).

I think it ended up looking remarkably like a snack cake. Mmmmmm.

Note: For those of us in Canada – we have a similar organization Blankets For Canada. (Thank you Elaine for the link).

All the holiday knitting is done for this year – I finished up BadgerDan’s last gift the other night (whew!). He’s been working furiously in his office on a secret gift project for me – my curiosity is definitely up at this point.

I leave you with a view of our wee tree:

Christmas Corner

and of Tomi’s protestation of Mommy not sharing her blanket:

Tomi's Comfy Cave

TTFN.

Published in: on December 24, 2008 at 12:54 am  Leave a Comment  
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This week’s post is brought to you by the colour “yellow”…

Hi everybody! It’s been a bit of a slog this week project-wise, as my knitting mojo seems to have gone down the toilet. Thankfully, though, I have managed to complete a few things, so I don’t feel like a total failure.

Here’s last week’s KAL dishcloth:

Tulip Lace Dishcloth

Pattern: Tulip Lace by Love 2 Knit Dishcloths
Yarn: Bernat Handicrafter Cotton, Lemon Swirl
Needles: 3.25mm

This is another one that you had to add border stitches to the pattern (I did 3 on either side and 3 garter ridges top and bottom). Nice pattern, but I fail to see the tulips in the pattern.

Block of the Month for July:

Star Overlay Square

Pattern: Star Overlay by Chris Simon
Yarn: Mission Falls 1824 Wool, 013 Curry, 005 Raven, 007 Cocoa
Hook: 5mm

I broke my own rules this time and used a third colour for this one due to yardage issues. The colours really are much better in person and blend in when put with the other squares. See?:

2008 Sampler Afghan Progress

I’m behind by a couple of filler squares, but them I can catch up on later.

Recognize this little gem?:

Austermann Abotanicity Sweater - skirt

Yes, that is my Abotanicity Sweater. I had goofed on the lace and had been putting off tinking it back for a while. It’s now corrected and has one finished lace repeat done on the skirt.

Work has been going very slowly on my New England Socks:

New England socks - progress

I put it back down after only being able to knit 1″ into the second sock before it was driving me nuts.

So, I cast on for this instead:

Nanner Socks - Sock 1 Foot

Nanner Socks!!!! Another pattern by the wonderful and talented Wendy Johnson of WendyKnits fame (and reigning enlightened Overlord on Plurk).

Finished the first one last night:

Nanner Socks - Sock 1 Complete

What can I say? Plurk is driving me bananas ๐Ÿ˜‰

Well, even if there hasn’t been much in the way of knitting going on – certainly there has been stash enhancement:

Madeline Tosh - Fireside

A gift from the Lovely Fiona of some stunning Madeline Tosh handdyed superwash merino entitled “Fireside”. I darn near tackled her.

Misti Alpaca Handpaint Sock

A new shipment of Misti Alpaca handpainted sock yarn (50% alpaca, 30% merino, 10% silk, 10% nylon) arrived at Unwind this week. OMG!!! This one jumped into my arms of its own volition and wouldn’t leave. It’s called “Blues in the Night”. I weep.

Nature Wool Chunky

I found the burgundy Araucania Nature Wool (#113) on sale and grabbed the lot. Only 500g/600m of it, but I still have the vision of some sort of cabled sweater. Thankfully, after digging around in the stash a bit, I found 4 hanks of Cascade 220 in a dark wine colour (#2403) that’ll work. Now if only I could find a pattern…

Tomi wants everyone to know that he’s feeling much better and is back to his old loveable self. He just wishes that Maverick would stop using him as a pillow.

Do you mind???

In other news, our new stove was delivered (by our landlord – it’s shiny ๐Ÿ™‚ ) but there’s still no sign of the fridge people who were supposed to show up on Saturday. The landlord and I were NOT amused, especially since they called to confirm TWICE! Bizarre.

TTFN.

Published in: on July 14, 2008 at 2:14 pm  Comments (1)  
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Think Warm Thoughts…

Happy Valentines Day!

There is just something about sub-zero weather that makes me want to make blankets.

As the mercury plummeted and the snow flew these last couple of weeks, I have been completely pre-occupied with working on my afghan projects.

I’m now up to 45 stripes on my Vintage Vertical Stripe Afghan and will soon need to search out some more scrap Lopi wool for it.

VVS Afghan - 45 rows

The February project for the 12″ Crocheted Block a Month CAL is called “Cross My Heart” by John Davis.

Cross My Heart Square

Mission Falls 1824 Wool (Colour 009), Debbie Bliss Merino Aran (Black) & Easy Knit Mercerized Wool (Black) [I ran out].

I pulled my Log Cabin Blanket project out of hibernation when the realization hit me that bordering off the square and switching to solid semi-Modrian blocks would both look cool and use up ALL the yarn. Another stalled project well on it’s way to completion – yay! 3 more colour blocks and the border to go.

Log Cabin Blanket

The first “Tea on the Sea” sock is done:

Tea on the Sea Socks - Sock 1 done Tea on the Sea Socks (Cable Close-up)

When working the foot pattern I got a little carried away and ended up having it longer than normal so ended up shortening the toe – no problem, it fits beautifully even if the toe is wider than I normally do.

BadgerDan and I went into Toronto for a meeting yesterday which had me scrambling a bit for something simple to take with me as the majority of my current projects are not too transportable. I grabbed a ball of Knit Picks Memories (S’mores colourway) from my sock stash and started a standard 72 stitch sock on 2mm DPNs. I did 3″ of 2×2 ribbing for the cuff and I’ll decide on the kind of heel when I get there.

Simple S'mores Socks

The grey-blue colour kind of has me stumped as to which part of the s’more it’s from – campfire ash maybe?

And… if I’m anywhere near downtown TO, it means yarn pron from Romni and Lettuce Knit.

At Romni I grabbed a couple of balls of Noro Kureyon (on sale!!!) in a colourway I absolutely adore (172).

Noro Kureyon 172

Lettuce Knit held a wonderful surprise for me – they still had some skeins of Socks That Rock left! Squee! (Some of you might not think this is such a big deal, but this is the first time in the few years that I’ve known of it’s existence that I’ve been able to pet it, love it and call it George.) Behold it’s froggy glory:

Blue Moon STR Lightwt - Froggin'

And some gorgeous Fleece Artist Merino/Alpaca Sliver Roving came home with me too.

Fleece Artist Merino/Alpaca Sliver

In other news:

I’ve finally reached the lace skirt of the Austermann Abotanicity Sweater – it should move pretty fast now.

Austermann Abotanicity Sweater - Bodice

A couple of projects have been shelved:

Minimalist Cardigan – ripped out and red lambswool given to my friend Angel (for her 1st shawl! I’m so proud of her)

Spring Surprise Shawl – the cotton just wasn’t working out either. I’ll restart this one again come summertime with a better yarn. I have a couple of options that I’m thinking about.

And talking about shelves…

Hutch Bookshelves

In one of my power-putter modes, I re-organized all of our books and “Frankenstein”ed a couple of shelves for the corner of our living room last Saturday. It has finally been completely reclaimed from winter holiday madness and neglect. Looks good – no?

Tomi & Mav

Everyone’s a critic….

Published in: on February 14, 2008 at 10:43 pm  Comments (1)  
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Two Steps Forward…

This weekend has been full of ups and downs, mis-starts and re-dos.

After realizing that the Tierra Cabled Beret would fit a prize-winning pumpkin, I re-knit it on smaller needles (originally done on 10mm as per pattern – re-knit on 8mm) and am really pleased with the result. Here is the newly “human” sized beret:

Tierra Cabled Beret

A bit more work got done on the Minimalist Cardigan:

Minimalist Cardigan

This is my no-brainer TV knitting at the moment.

And – if it’s the weekend, it means “Lace Knitting”! Clue number 3 for the Autumn Mystery Shawl is done:

Autumn Mystery Shawl

Fleece Artist Merino Sock Yarn in the “Origin” colourway on 4mm needles.

And the Halloween Mystery Shawl KAL has begun on a rather intricate lace and beaded 3/4 Circular Shawl. I cast-on for Clue 1 about 3 times before it started making sense to me. The very talented Renee of Goddess Knits is the brains behind both KALs. All I can say right now is that I’m very impressed with the designs and am anxious to hit Row 50 of the Halloween Shawl for some plain WS rows! Here is the shawl so far (I’m on Row 30).

Halloween Shawl

OrnaghiFilati Merino Oro with 6/0 Gold-Lined Brown Glass Japanese Beads on 3.5mm needles.

I picked up a few things from Unwind on Saturday, where I hung out with Fiona and Angela (Red Corset Designs) for most of the day.

Shelridge Farms Yarn

Some 4mm Brittany DPNs (I see knitted Tams in my future), Pewter Shawl Pin from Perl Grey, and 2 hanks of Shelridge Farms Soft Touch Ultra 3-Ply Handpaint (neutrals are always good to have).

I plan on finishing up some second socks this week so that I may begin to dig into my new handpaints. I have to get a pair of my own design done now that I’ve found the perfect yarn – more to come on this.

Tomi wants his scratches now, so I’d better go…

Tomi's Tummy

Published in: on October 1, 2007 at 12:22 am  Leave a Comment  
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Taking the plunge.

Okay, here we go. To be perfectly honest with you, I’ve been hemming and hawing about doing a blog for a while (about 3 years now) but have been a bit nervous about the prospect. Now that I’m here, it seems to be coming a bit easier than I thought it would.

I guess some introductions are in order, so with no further ado – the main cast of characters in this folly:

  • Alynxia – Craftswoman, Designer, Aquarian, Witch, Hermit, Wife, Well-Meaning Oddball
  • BadgerDan – Craftsman, Engineer, Sci-Fi Technogeek, Absent-Minded Professor, Husband
  • Tomi – Half-Siamese, Half-Marmalade Tabby, 9 years old, Velvet Gentleman, Monkey
  • Maverick – Black, White & All Barncat, 2 years old, Holy Terror, Goof, Momma’s Boy

You’ll get to know a bit more about us and our surreal life as time goes on.

Mostly I’ll be talking about my daily creative endeavours with a bit off headspace and family life stuff thrown in for good measure.

For all my fibreholic brethren, my Ravelry username is Alynxia. I finally got my invite a couple of weeks ago and am still feeling my way around the site. Whoo boy, documenting my stash is going to be quite the job! My digital camera (it’s mine now- DH will have to get his own!) will be getting a thorough workout in the weeks to come.

As I knit about 8 hours practically everyday (I work part-time and am a nightowl), I figure a “Project du Jour” section is in order, so here’s what I’ve been working on today:

Twisted Toucan Socks

Twisted Toucan Socks

I’m working on the 2nd sock of the pair right now. They are out of Opal Rainforest “Toucan” Sock yarn held double throughout on 3mm 32″ Addi Turbos (Magic Loop). I normally match my self-patterning socks to each other (I’m big on balance), but decided to live dangerously this time as the yarn is a bit nutty anyway. The pattern I’m using is the Master Simple Coriolis pattern from Cat Bordhi’s new book “New Pathways for Sock Knitters” with a simple rolled cuff ending with EZ’s sewn bind off.

Book Review Time:

New Pathways for Sock Knitters by Cat Bordhi

This is the first book I’ve read by Cat and frankly she has blown the top of my head off. Now, I design socks (some of the patterns to which I’ll make available here in the future – they’re mostly still on paper right now) but I’m in complete awe of Cat’s genius with her new sock construction techniques. Her instructions are so clear and approachable that even “I” could understand the figure 8 cast on (I couldn’t wrap my noggin around it before). Super book – Cat, I humbly bow in your direction and can’t wait for the rest of the series.

In other news – look what showed up this morning in my mailbox!

Lisa Souza Sock! - Newtown

Lisa Souza Sock! – Newtown Colourway

Yeeeee!!! My first blog post and I have Yarn Pr0n!

I loved this yarn the second I saw it on Lisa’s Website (it got here fast too!) It’s hand-dyed Superwash Wool/Nylon (75%/25%) 4 oz/450yds in shades of brown, green and blue.

Once I stop drooling, I’ll figure out a pattern to use it with.

Well, back to the sock – I hope to finish it tonight (this pair simply flew off the needles). I’ll leave you with some pictures of my boys.

TTFN

Tomi on CarpetMaverick on Radio

Published in: on September 25, 2007 at 1:10 am  Comments (1)  
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