Monday, September 29, 2008

Knit Picks is the bomb!

I just received email from KnitPicks and they are sending me new needles, no questions asked!

I was going to drop by the LYS and pick up a replacement needle, but I think I will wait!

I dyed three skeins of yarn this weekend; maybe I'll see if they have a ball winder! Need to un-tangle them. While getting the dyeing supplies ready, "Abby the wonder puppy" managed to pull the bag of yarn off the dining room table. She proceded to "kill" the yarn for me and managed to mangle two of the skeins. This morning I was able to reskein the one I dyed (kettle dyed, wanted the difference in colors, so I just shoved it in the pot). The other poor skein of yarn will have to wait until I'm ready to dye it as I want to do something different with it.

Pictures to come of the dyed yarn and progress on my sock (it is turning out WONDERFUL!).

Happy Knitting,

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Combining Patterns

I have not yet heard from KnitPicks - I will phone them Tuesday if no email shows up over by the end of the day Monday in regards to the needle tip that broke Thursday.

I have begun the socks with Lorna's Laces Edgewater colorway yarn. I am going to attempt to combine patterns for the first time! I love the River Rapid Socks from SockBug, but I loving doing toe up socks (I can knit the socks as tall as I want them, either ending when the socks are tall enough, or when I'm running out of yarn). I am using the KnitPicks magic loop, toe up two at a time pattern, and attempting the lace pattern from the River Rapid Socks. I just started the lace pattern, so not much can be seen yet, but there is one of the socks. The flash makes the colors far brighter than they are.

I've spent the morning doing some of my bead work and have 6 or 7 items to list in my shop - I think the rest of my time in my shop will be catching up on work I brought home this weekend. It is overcast and raining so I'm not sure if we will be going up to the hunting shack working with Abby.

I learned one of our new teachers is a knitter and does "yarn road trips." Friday she brought in a bunch of her knitting for a little show and tell. She has grand-babies and I made me wish I had some too, but I'll be more than happy to wait for our son to finish high school and college!

Happy Knitting!

Friday, September 26, 2008


One of my new Harmony Wood needle tips broke last night! I had put my knitting down to do something, came back and one of them was broken. Our son wasn't home, so I couldn't blame it on him; it was on the coffee table, so no one had sat on it while I was out of the room; the dog was not running around with it in her mouth, so she hadn't broken it in half.

I've contacted KnitPicks with the hopes they will replace the tip, but in the mean time, my Merlot socks are in limbo!!! A couple more rows and I'll be done with the gullet decrease and another 6 or 7 inches before I'll decrease for the toe! I am on the home stretch!

My KnitPicks order of bare yarn arrived yesterday. So I should be busy dyeing this weekend, but now the rush to get the Merlot socks done and hubby's sock yarn dyed isn't such a big rush now!

Guess I'll get to work on the Edgewater colorway yarn and get those socks started!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Rainy Day Tuesday

Yesterday I had to go to the post office to mail an order from my store. The good news is that it is close to the LYS; the bad news is that it is close to the LYS!

It was a rainy day, the type that made me wish I was home, curled up on the couch, either knitting or reading instead of making a living at work. I am also fighting a cold or allergies and am wore out, often coming home and going to be early each night after work, the thoughts of being tucked in my bed floated through my head quite frequently yesterday too.

My KnitPicks order is due any day, so I really should have stayed out of the LYS - I don't need any yarn, but since when did that ever stop me!?

As my hand knit sock collection grows (and the temps drop), I find myself wearing my hand knit socks over my store bought ones more frequently. I have a pair of brown pants with no hand knit socks I can wear with them. I'd also like more handknit socks to wear with jeans, something that would match them more than what I have. I found skeins of Lorna's Laces in the colorway titled "Blue Jeans," then I found some beautiful kettle dyed brown yarn. I was looking at over $40 in yarn (for TWO pairs of socks!). As I sat in the sock yarn area I saw the most gorgeous skeins of Lorna's Laces in a colorway titled "Edgewater" in the most beautiful blues, greens, and browns. Now I was looking at spending over $60!

I came to my senses, after all, I DO have a large order coming from KnitPicks any day and I can dye those yarns any color I want (or at least attempt to dye them colors I want -- remember the "red" yarn I dyed for hubby ended up Merlot). I put the other two colorways back, and purchased only the Edgewater colorway. I had them rolled into balls. The only problem is that to knit them so that the socks will match in some way means I'll have to pull one from the center and knit the other from the outside of the other ball of yarn!

I now have even more desire to finish the Merlot socks. I am on the home stretch and am now knitting the foot part having turned the heel, picked up (and started decreasing) the gusset last night. After knitting with the fingering weight yarn, this worsted weight knits up very fast! I am thinking I might havel knit my husband's socks toe up so that I can more or less knit until I run out of yarn and make them nice and tall for him.

I now have 5 different colorways of sock yarn waiting to become socks, not counting the 5 skiens coming from KnitPicks that I get to dye before knitting into socks, or what have you. Oh, and I have two sock blanks I could dye.

I think I need to stay out of the LYS for a while as I might have enough sock yarn to last me a year if I stick to my "one pair of socks a month" goal!

Monday, September 22, 2008

What a great puppy!!!!

We were ditched by our son, so hubby and I went to the hunting shack alone, just he and I and Abby.

We didn't bring home dinner, but Abby did flush a bird three different times. The first one I was blessed with witnessing her almost touch the bird with her nose. She was going under a tree and as I watched her the ground explode as the bird flew up and away.

I think the best part of hunting is being in the woods. The colors of the trees are so beautiful this time of the year as they begin to burst into autumn colors!

I kept wondering how I could dye a sock blank or a skein of yarn to represent those exact colors! The blue of the sky so brilliant, the maples, an orange-yellow with bright reds looking almost like they were on fire.

It was a good day in the woods, despite no knitting!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Back Up and Running

As though of you who follow this blog know, we got a puppy this summer. Getting a puppy is like having a baby. Your life changes and ours sure has!

The first change with my Etsy Store was that I just didn't have time to play with my beads!

In preparation for when I returned to work as a school teacher earlier this month we had to find a place to put her during the day. A place that wouldn't matter if she had accidents in, and there wasn't much she could get into to ruin or hurt herself.

The room that I have my "workshop" in became the perfect place. This is also our "all purpose room," we have lots of shelves for storage, a laundry tub, a small work bench for my husband, my little craft corner, and, the important thing, no carpeting!

My beading supplies were packed up, with the idea of moving to a different location. I couldn't decide where I wanted to set up my workshop, my poor little Etsy shop remained on hold, along with all my beading supplies in a closet upstairs.

Everything is unpacked now, but not in a new location! After tossing a bunch of old crafting supplies I was able to make room so that I could store my beads, tools, and other supplies, out of Abby's reach. I set up my workshop in the same spot so that I could spend time with Abby in "her room " so that she didn't always associate isolation with this room.

I won't be able to leave all my beading tools and supplies out, so no beading during those few minutes here and there. I will probably be beading on weekends when we really don't lock her up as much and I can leave the 'stuff' out; she can lay at my feet while I bead. Or on those evenings when I have time to set up my table, and then put it all away again!

I just listed seven new items, stitch markers and a row counter, that I'd made prior to packing up that I never got around to photographing and packaging up. Just found two sets of Letter Stitch markers I'll have to try to list later this week.

I have bare yarn coming to dye as that is my goal - to add hand dyed yarns to my shop as a regular item to stock.

It's now time to pack up for the day and get going - a family trip to our hunting shack is on the agenda (still waiting to find out if our son will be available, or if he "forgot" and made plans with friends instead of hanging out with his old parents!). We bought me a hunting license this year; just "in case" I want to hunt with my hubby like we did way back in the day, BC (before children). Don't tell hubby, but I'd rather be riding my horse, but, you know, bonding time and all that! Besides, a walk in the woods is good exercise!

Now if I could only figure out how to walk in the woods AND knit without tripping or running into tree branches!!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Merlot yarn for socks #5

Here are the socks made from the yarn I dyed. They were supposed to be red but ended up with too much blue. I love them, a truly happy mistake; but my husband will have to wait for his socks now!!

Hello Wasilla, and other knitting news

I often wondered if anyone ever checked in. Does anyone read my blogs?

Unless people left comments, I had no clue. Then one day, a friend told me about a site that will monitor hits on your blog.

Yes, I do have quite a lot of people checking in, only a few leave comments.

My greatest surprise was to have someone from my home state of Alaska check in. Thought it was my mom, but someone in Wasilla, Alaska, has been reading my blog! So, here I go, waving to you! HELLO, Wasilla! Hello to everyone else who stops by!

Back to Knitting

Since May of this year, I have completed 4 pairs of socks; pictured above, in order from L (first pair of socks) to R (most recent).

This week I learned the dreadful, yet wonderful, Kitchener Stitch (or 'grafting') on those lovely green "Girl's Best Friend" anklets. My first attempt created the oddest finish on the toe of that sock. After ripping it out, and re-knitting the rows that I dismantled in the process, I tried again. Nope, no go! I shoved it in my project bag and brought it to work with me with the plan to stop by the LYS on my way home.

At lunch, I figured I try just one more time. I did a search for videos demonstrating the stitch (just as I did at home). I wish I'd bookmarked the site I found as she made it so easy! EASY PEASY! WOW! Maybe it was because I had attempted, failed, and then gave myself think time. What ever it was, I'm did it!

I have my 5th pair on the needles. They were supposed to be a 100% wool, worsted weight socks for my husband. I hand dyed them myself, was told to add "a touch" of blue to tone down the fire-engine red. I must have added to many "touches" as I ended up with the most beautiful Merlot color! The flash gave them a very purple color so I'll have to wait until I can take them in natural light and post them at that time.

I now have to order more yarn -- but, do I just buy red, or attempt to dye again. The savings is not that much, so, maybe I'll just order him the red yarn and be done with it! Maybe I'll order more bare yarn just to play with!

In the mean time, I have an extra 220 yard skein of Merlot as my tiny feet only require 220 yards, not 330 his do. Anyone looking for Merlot Worsted weight 100% wool superwash yarn!? I have a lonely skein looking for a home...or maybe I'll knit two pairs for myself!

I did set a goal to knit one pair of socks each month from May on, so I am on target at this point in time. I'll finish my socks, and my husband's socks, that will take me to October. I have one on the sticks (one single sock), but several skeins waiting their turn to become socks!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

ah, autumn!

We have gone from warm, almost hot, summer, to a cool autumn. It's too early, BUT, that means I might get to wear my collection of new wool socks I knit soon!

School has started, which means I returned to my job as our school's Title One teacher.

Abby continues to take up an enormous amount of time, we have a neighbor girl coming 2 or 3 times a week after school to let Abby out and play with her. This should allow me time to drop by the stable on the way home from work so I can ride.

The location of my "craft room" is still up in the air. We pulled most of my craft items out of the corner of our storeroom/shop as this has become Abby's room when we are both at work. This weekend I sat in the room with her so that Monday the room wouldn't be a total shock to her system in addition to being locked up for 8+ hours. I couldn't handle the thought of that, so I came home at lunch time (my prep and lunch run back to back). Although she did potty in the room, she didn't destroy anything or try to dig herself out of the room through the door!

Once the location of my craft room/workshop is decided, I can set it up and then get back into making items for my etsy shop.

I am going to knit worsted weight wool socks for my husband; decided I'd dye them myself. He wanted red, but not fire-engine red. So, I added just a touch of blue. Not a good idea. The yarn turned out a beautiful shade of merlot, which will be great for MY socks, but not so much for him! So, to dye or just buy, that is the question for the red. I do love playing with the dyes and blank yarn, could list the extra 220 yards of yarn in my shop, but I'll just have to think about it!

It is time for me to get ready for work, take Abby outside for one last run before being locked away for the day (hmmm, wonder if I'll manage to stay at work all day or run home at lunch -- which is a 45 minute round trip errand!).

Happy Knitting!