Saturday, January 31, 2009

Sock Yarn In My Future!

I enjoy following some blogs and just occasionally dropping in on some. Well, one of the blogs that I started following in January 09 is Patt's Creations Madness http://pattscreationsmadness.blogspot.com/ . I joined as a follower before I even read that she was having a blog contest. I got the message today that I had won her contest for signup as a follower. The random number generator picked my number and I am going to get some KnitPicks Felici sock yarn! http://www.knitpicks.com/Felici%20Self%20Striping%20Sock%20Yarn_YD5420165.html

The hard part was selecting a color. Wow, they are so beautiful. I finally decided on Aquarium since I have not knit any socks in the greens colorway. That will mean my "prize" socks are unique and extra special. Thank you, Patt.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Yes! Suna Knits!: Wednesday Wonders #4: Dawn O.

A knitting friend of mine wrote about a mutual friend. They are both great knitters and really wonderful people. While you are on site, feel free to explore some of Suna's great projects.

Yes! Suna Knits!: Wednesday Wonders #4: Dawn O.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Slippers Felted!

Late yesterday I sewed up the slipper boots & this morning I got them to the laundry. The water is very hot so that is a plus. I loaded them in the top-loading washer with a tiny bit of detergent, 2 bath sheets, a large denim bag, 2 large double-layer sheeting curtains I had made for the motorhome and a pair of rubber wedge-soled sandals. There is no way to control the water level in these commercial machines so I wanted there to be plenty of material to buffet and agitate to encourage felting. I thought the wash cycle was about 10-12 minutes & had my fingers crossed that it would be enough. No such luck, the wash cycle was 8-9 minutes & the slippers had just started to felt. I started another washer since I couldn't reset anything on the first one and loaded everything over into it while the first empty washer finished the cycles. I kept a close watch on the second washer & at about 4 minutes of agitation the proper sizing was achieved! The felted slippers went into the sink for a cold water rinse while the towels, etc finished the cycles.

I rolled the rinsed slippers in another bath sheet to squeeze & pat out some of the water, jumped into the Jeep and brought them to the motorhome. There, R and I stuffed them full of plastic bags and put rolled up washcoths & kitchen towels in the leg part to shape them while they dry. No pix yet but when they are dry I'll get them before mailing.

I do have a rather blurred photo I just snapped of the bag I am designing/knitting. I am using a varigated P&C cotton. My hands get tired & sore after a few rows so the knitting is going slowly. I made a few notes of stitch count and shaping ideas, found a stitch pattern in a book, grabbed my needles and took off. It is going well, if slowly.

About half the height of the bag is knit so maybe it won't be too much longer until FO time. Now, I am off to find something less stressful on my hands to knit. Ah, the fun of "What shall I cast on?"

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Not Much Knitting Going On

I have been such a slacker on the knitting side. When it is dark and gloomy or I don't want to be out in the sunshine, I am more in the mood to wander around the www looking at what other people have knit or read blogs. I have one of DD's slippers sewn up and one partially sewn. Guess I am dreading the felting in a commercial washer experience. Anyway, been dragging my feet terribly. Hate to have winter over before she gets them.

What I have been having fun doing is exploring the Rio Grande Valley of Texas. We love getting out and seeing what this area is like in the winter. I've written about it and linked to some photos if you want to share our experience. http://yarningdowntheroad.blogspot.com/2009/01/enjoying-rio-grande-valley.html

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Is This Me?

Several weeks ago I posted a card with my daughter's photo on it that had been edited to be in the style of painter Alphonse Mucha. She played around with a photo of me and sent several versions in the style of different artists and treatments. The ones in the style of Modigliani and a "masculine" version were scary. The Botticelli one and the "young" one I found funny. The best and kindest of the lot was another Mucha treatment.
If you have never seen me before, I am not sure you would recognize me from this photo. LOL

Friday, January 16, 2009

Reading Not Knitting

I haven't been reading much for the past several months but I am in the mood for it now. Today I finished Maggie Sefton's "Needled to Death" that I started more than a month ago. I enjoy this mystery series and it makes me want to get the next book. This one was the 2nd book in the series so there are more to read. Many of the scenes take place in a real yarnshop, Lambspun of Colorado, in Fort Collins CO. I am looking forward to a personal visit to see this wonderful shop.

The book was copyrighted in 2005 so the fun furs and supersoft fuzzy yarns that were new then are a bit dated now. There is a sleeveless shell knitting pattern included that should be a quick knit.

If you haven't been reading any of the cozy knitting mysteries, this series, beginning with "Knit One, Kill Two", would be a good one to start with.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Tuesday Musings

I am trying to be a better blogger and have been reading other blogs for inspiration. Wow, are there some good writers and photographers on the internet! Some make me smile and some make me think, some inspire and some make me feel like I've had a good visit with a friend. What more could you ask for to go with your coffee in the mornings?

One blog I came across that matches my interest in knitting and in reading is called Elevenses. For January she is having a contest to name your favorite character from literature. She has a bunch of great prizes, too. Check it out at: http://timeforelevenses.blogspot.com/2009/01/competition.html

Knitting calls but housework calls louder. Blah!

Monday, January 12, 2009

Beanstalk Preemie Hat Pattern

As soon as I saw this stitch pattern I thought of one of my favorite fairy tales, Jack & the Beanstalk. I could just see the beanstalk steps that Jack climbed. This was knit using US 6 needles and some old Carrousel Remember yarn, the color is Winter Aqua. Another preemie or little newborn hat for the Lone Star From the Heart project.

Beanstalk Preemie Hat

Yarn: Sport weight baby yarn or lightweight worstedNeedles: US 4-6 double points Whatever feels right for the yarn-not too stiff a fabric
Size: 1-3 lbs (3-5 lbs, 6-8 lbs)

Bubble Stitch Pattern adapted for circular knitting from Gisela Klopper, Beautiful Knitting Patterns

Round 1: *K1, P2, Sl 1 p wise, K2, PSSO, P2 * Repeat * to * across round

Round 2: *K1, P2, K1, YO, K1, P2* Repeat * to * across round

Rounds 3 & 4: *K1, P2, K3, P2* Repeat * to * across round.

Cast on 48 (56, 64) stitchesDivide stitches on three needles. Join in the round, being careful not to twist. Place marker.
K1, P1 ribbing for .75” to 1”
Knit 1 round
Knit pattern until hat measures 3 1/2" (4", 4 1/2") from the cast on edge.

Knit 2 together for one round.
Knit around.
Knit 2 together for one round.
Knit around.
Knit 2 together for one round.
Knit.

Cut yarn 6" long and pull through remaining stitches. Pull tail to the inside and weave in all ends.

Copyright – Patricia J Reece January 12, 2009
You are welcome to use this pattern to knit hats for personal use, gifting or for sale. Please do not sell the pattern.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Yarn and a Pattern

Do you remember those three sweaters I bought at the Ropa Usada? Well, I made yarn out of them! Disassembled, unraveled and rolled into balls of yarn. I still need to wind them into hanks, soak them in soapy water, rinse, hang to dry then roll into center-pull balls. With the winds blowing 20-40 mph that isn't going to happen any time soon! In the meantime the balls of yarn are living in my Secret Santa gift bags.

Just for fun I knit up an idea that had been bouncing around for another preemie/newborn hat. The stitch pattern reminded me of various tracks I saw in the sand of the beaches on South Padre Island. So, I named the hat Tracks. The model was knit with Caron Simply Soft light coral using US 6 needles. My photography model is stuffing the hat with a plastic bag and setting it on a drinking glass. LOL At least you can see the stitch.


Tracks Baby Hat
Yarn: Sport weight baby yarn or lightweight worstedNeedles: US 4-6 double points Whatever feels right for the yarn-not too stiff a fabric
Size: 1-3 lbs (3-5 lbs, 6-8 lbs)
Stitch pattern from “The Big Book of Knitting Stitch Patterns”
Mock Braids adapted for knitting in the round
Rows 1 and 3: slip 1, K 1, yarn-over, pass the slip st over both K st and yarn-over; repeat from * to * to end of round
Rows 2, 4, 5 and 6: Knit
Repeat rows 1 – 6 for pattern

Cast on 48 (56, 64) stitchesDivide stitches on three needles. Join in the round, being careful not to twist. Place marker.

K 1, P 1 ribbing for .75" to 1"
Knit 1 to 3 rounds
Knit pattern until it measures 3 1/2" (4", 4 1/2") from the cast on edge.

Knit 2 together for one round.
Knit around.
Knit 2 together for one round.
Knit around.
Knit 2 together for one round.
Knit.

Cut yarn 6" long and pull through remaining stitches. Pull tail to the inside and weave in all ends.
Copyright – Patricia J Reece January 8, 2009
You are welcome to use this pattern to knit hats for personal use, gifting or for sale. Please do not sell the pattern.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Kntting Presents & Other Goodies

My mother gave me a gift "to stir or spur" my creativity. She was checking out the Stitching Post and didn't know of any needles I needed or any yarn for a particular project so was just browsing. She spotted a selection of purse/bag handles that had WOW factor and picked out a set. She knows how much I like to knit bags. I do have a pattern for a cabled felted bag and some yarn that would be perfect with these handes but I am letting the whole idea gel. Something else may be the project that comes to mind.

My other knitting gift was the book Mason-Dixon Knitting Outside the Lines!!! Our daughter loves to give me knitting gifts and buy yarn for me so this was another example of her wonderful sense of the right gift.I've already selected at least 3 projects for my to-d0 list. And laughed insanely through some of the wonderful stories and comments. Love it!

That may have been all the knitting presents but not the last gifts. My daughter also shares my love of reading (as does my mother) and sent two other books that seem very enjoyable, especially the one that takes place in a small fictional town in West Texas. That one is by Dixie Cash's "Since You're Leaving Anyway, Take Out the Trash." The other is by Malinda M. Hall "Nowhere is Somewhere."

To cap off the whole package my daughter included a card. She has become quite the card-maker using photo editing, great fonts and other fun stuff on them. The only thing she hasn't quite mastered is the verse. While she is a great writer of prose, poetry is not her thing. The trick to the card is that it is a photo of her that I have never seen and treated to be in the style of Alponse Mucho. It is also blurred a bit. I will confess, I am a bad mother, I had to ask who the picture was. She used Mucho pictures on the back of the card and on the envelope lining. I saw a few elements that were her, but it wasn't a photo of my little red-haired darling! Here is the card front, back and envelope.

Friday, January 2, 2009

New Year, New Beginnings

At least I would like to think that this is a new beginning - posting more often. I've been having so much fun in the warmer temps of far south Texas. Really nice to sit outside to knit and visit with people walking by. We had a nice Christmas and New Year's Eve with a little bit of partying here in the RV Park. Nothing too wild, mind you.

I posted photos of the Secret Santa gifts I received but have not yet shown what I sent my pal. I found a beautiful cabled bag pattern on Drops website http://www.garnstudio.com/lang/en/visoppskrift.php?d_nr=98&d_id=54&lang=us. Since I like to knit cables this was a perfect pattern. I added a couple of Christmas cloths I had test knit for a friend. The patterns are Sleigh Ride and Sleigh Ride Reindeer and can be found on Knitwits Alley site http://knitwitsalley.tripod.com/. A notebook (giftee is a prolific writer), some herb teas and a handy towel made up the rest of the gift.


Other Christmas knitting is a pair of Penguin Housesocks for my son. My friend, Elaine, from Down Cloverlaine blogspot wrote darling penguin bib and cloth patterns. She sent me the chart for the penguin cloth for me use on the socks. Ther cloth pattern is on her blog http://downcloverlaine.blogspot.com/2008/04/penguin-washcloth.html along with many other really cute bib & cloth patterns. Son specified short top socks and really soft. He checked my stash and requested Lion Brand Cotton Ease as the yarn.


Another Christmas project was a Wavy Feathers Wimple. I had some soft rosey mauve fingering weight yarn and I've been wanting to knit a wimple, smoke ring or cowl for a while so I thought I would knit is for my Mother. I wasn't really sure that she would like it or wear it but since she was spending Christmas at my sister's house, I guessed that if Mother didn't like it, my sis would. Sure 'nuf, it was passed on and sis is wearing it in the cold blasting winds of El Paso. I promised Mother I would knit her something else of her choice when she decided what she wanted. The wimple pattern is on this site http://www.carylldesigns.com/wavy_feathers_wimple.htm
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