Knitting!

I finally have a knitting photo to share – 32 days without being able to knit!  Torture!! :-)

The red, gold and aqua stripe sections on the left were knit over the course of this week.  I have to knit continental (so my right arm isn’t doing much work) and slowly but its PROGRESS!   Just being able to pick up some knitting after making the commute at the end of a work day from my “home office” (table and laptop table at one side of the living room) to my knitting chair (out 6-7 feet away) has been great and makes me so happy.

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Hello out there!

I can finally type fairly well with my broken arm.  The last two weeks I have worked three days a week about 6 hrs a day and was very thankful to get out of the apartment, see other people, and not just sit in my chair watching tv.  Couldn’t really do anything other than watch tv which was driving me crazy.  I used my long-handled grabby tool to pick up all the knitting projects scattered around the living room to put them in a big basket to wait until I could actually knit again.  And of course I’m right-handed and broke my right arm so that adds to the fun.

By the way long handled grabby tools are the best.  You of course drop more things, knock more things onto the floor, or need something off the back of a bottommost shelf when the arm really doesn’t want to hang in a bent over position to grab them. :-)

Now, unfortunately like so many people, as of last Thursday I’ll be working remotely from home for a month but I’m very thankful that is an option for me.  And I can gradually ramp back up to my normal 40 hr week as my arm allows  – so much better than just watching tv!

Laundry tasks should reduce since I don’t have to venture out – I can wear my pjs and robe and arm sling all day – something they would have frowned on if I were actually going into the office.  Trust me, shimmying out of jeans with one hand to go to the bathroom is a hassle!!  Of course I have a good friend who is  wonderful and so appreciated who was driving me to and from work, appts, taking out my garbage, putting together that new adjustable height laptop table that allows me to easily type now, opening those new peanut butter and other jars I couldn’t get opened one-handed. :-)

And I have been able to knit a few rows on a simple project the last couple of days.  Even those few rows made me so happy.  So today I need to clear a few things off the table next to the laptop table so my “home office” is a bit organized and do a bit of  vacuuming.  It may take me a bit (or a lot) longer to do some of those tasks one-handed but I’m so glad that I can finally do a bit more.

Stay healthy.

MIA

going to me MIA from the blog for a while – broke arm slipping on ice. :-(

 

A Sunny Sunday – 2-16-20

Yes for a change it’s a sunny Sunday here and not snowing.  It’s also quite a bit warmer than that one morning this week when I was 11 degrees below zero as I was waiting at the bus stop.  I’m very glad it was only that cold that one day.

This morning I finally finished taking down the Christmas tree and got everything packed back into the storage tub.  Now I just need to figure out if that tub will fit in the sewing room closet and free up some space in the other closet but the sewing room cleaning will wait until next weekend.  I just dragged it in that room and shut the door for the time being. Since then have been doing some other cleaning so it’s time for a coffee break (not that I don’t drink coffee all morning long while doing those things!)

Next up is sorting all the knitting works in progress scattered all over the living room.  If you’ve read the blog before you likely realize that I always have several knittting projects going at once –  well several has turned to many and they are scattered and piled everywhere. I need to corral the ones in current rotation and store the others in the sewing room that aren’t being worked on at the moment.

I just got a new large basket to put all the ones I’m working on in so they are not piled all around my chair.

20200216_7I love the braided designs woven in where the gray and white meet and the little bit of gray detail along the top edge – rather unique.

This one is the larger of two I got.  It can hold white a bit since I currently have a king-size bed pillow and two 18″ couch pillows and the big shawl I keep by my knitting chair to  get I back into round shape.  It of course comes flattened in a box so you need to stuff it full of things and let it sit overnight in order to get the shape back.  And the spot between the two chairs where the x-mas tree had been will be the perfect place for this basket.

Now I know you will be amazed that after saying I was not buying yarn this year that I might have had some yarn arrive at my house.  I could give you reasons like it was on sale, it was on sale, there were yarnathon power boost yards at stake as well as yarnathon star earning potential, or that we hadn’t seen sun in so many days and it was cold and snowy, oh yes and that state tax refund had arrived so I needed to spend just a bit of it to boost the economy — all really good yarn buying reasons and all of them are actually true — but heck you and I know it was pretty and I wanted it for a sweater so it made sense to get it know for all the foregoing reasons.

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These are going to be a fade type sweater where one color is faded into the next.  I had ordered one more color but it didn’t go well in reality so set that aside for some socks.  Then I had to go back and order duplicates of a couple colors so that I would have enough yardage for the sweater,  I didn’t want to order duplicates with the first order in case there were more colors that didn’t mesh as well in real life as on the monitor (see I was being frugal right?)   I love these colors and they are all Dream In Color Smooshy with Cashmere so they feel so soft.

The Loopy Ewe is also doing a Spring CAL (crochet along).  It’s low key – just a thread on Ravelry where you can chat about what your crochet project is and chat while working on it.  I had been wanting to make Ziggy Interrupted so decided to get this yarn from TLE to do it.  I don’t do a lot of crocheting but the panels of little square motifs between the zig zag sections I think I can handle.

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I might have enticed friend Judy into getting the Ziggy Interrupted pattern too.  And I might have also led her astray with a sweater pattern, Casco Bay.  It’s a totally comfy looking relaxed sweater with drop shoulders by Amy Herzog.  If you’ve read the blog you know I use Amy’s CustomFit program to generate my sweater patterns.  Amy has just added a drop shoulder sweater option to CustomFit so I want to try it out with this sweater (previously it was all regular set in sleeve styles).   The pattern comes as a CustomFit pattern or as a regular pattern in various sizes.   Judy got the regular pattern and I’ll be doing a CF version.  I was originally going to use the “fade” sequence yarn above for this sweater but I’m going to make one in a plain (or nearly solid) yarn first that’s a little heavier (sport weight) to make sure I like the way it fits before working on a fingering weight one.

My swatch is done – it just needs to dry a little more.  I’ll be using some stash yarn – I know from the stash can you believe it! – Squoosh FiberArts Rapture yarn in Balasam.

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Casco Bay uses a Shadow Rib stitch and this is the “right side” but the sweater uses the “wrong side”  (bottom image) as the outside.

I like both sides but I think I will use the top side as the outside for mine.

 

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I just need to wait for them to dry a bit more so I can weigh the swatch and figure out what my gauge is and then I’ll be all set to generate my pattern once I enter in that info.

I was also swatching with a second similar texture stitch in fingering weight – I like this stitch pattern too and may use it for the fade version.  It’s called the Grid Stitch.

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Okay – on to sorting those knitting projects and seeing if I can’t get them organized.

Feb. 9, 2020 – Yet Another Snowy Sunday

I’m really not complaining about the snow – I had nowhere I had planned to go (except to take stuff out to the dumpsters/recycling and then down to the mailboxes) which I could still do but they haven’t shoveled any walks and I don’t know what the parking lot might be like to walk thru (since it’s on the other side of the building) so haven’t bothered to venture out today except to open the door to see if it was still snowing and how cold it was.  Definitely cold and probably 4-5″ of new snow but it looks like it’s finally slowing down.

So I’ve been doing a few chores, baked a quiche, and now I think I bit of knitting.

I’m still working on my cowl – which I’m about halfway thru and just switched from blackish background to grayish background.

This is a super easy knit in the round.  I’ve changed the striped sequence a little and added in a multicolored yarn which the colors are actually much darker in than it photographs but it will be a fun cowl to wear when finished and very warm since it’s knit as a tube.

Yesterday I also started a new scarf in chunky yarn.  I’ve been saving this Purple Rain colorway for a scarf and maybe mitts for me.

I looked for a long time thru patterns on Ravelry trying to decide what pattern I wanted to use for this scarf and finally thought – you just bought that new Stitch book – just find a stitch you like and make a scarf!  So I’m using the Lacy V-Stitch – I love the look of lace in heavier yarns.  The lace pattern doesn’t show up well in my photos but after blocking it will be so pretty.

It’s also a very easy stitch pattern to remember which is a bonus – good tv or bus riding knitting.

I added a row of eyelets at the bottom edge so that I can easily and evenly attach clusters of fringe because I think I want to put my fringe twister to work and have lots of twisted fringe on this .The colors in this yarn are so pretty on this base.  I wish I had gotten more of it when it was available but I shall be content with my scarf and anything else I can make out of the leftovers.

There was some yarn added which will be used to make a “fade” type project.    I think I also have a couple more hanks in the stash that might work well with this group but I haven’t gone looking for them yet since I have plenty of items on the needles at the moment.

A friend gave me some gourmet hot chocolate for Christmas and I haven’t tried it yet so I think on this snowy day I shall have to have a hot cocoa break!

Choose your own stitch

The year-long KAL project for the Eat.Sleep.Knit is a “Choose Your Own Stitch” project.   It can be any project that uses squares or rectangles in different stitches – the point of which is to try new stitches.  I started the Guernsey Wrap as part of that project (which as been set aside for a bit) and am also making dishcloths – each with a different stitch pattern.

The first two dishcloths are done.

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The yarn is Cascade Ultra Pima Fine.  I was able to get two cloths out of one hank (136 yards) with just 3 yards left over.  Now I have to decide what color and stitch I will start a new cloth with.

I also finished off the Flash KAL projects – which was to knit any Skeindeer  mitt or mittens pattern.  The KAL started Jan. 27 and you need to finish by Feb. 7.   I finished off my  Silvestre this weekend.  That pattern contains both a full mitten and fingerless mitts pattern.

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The right and left mitts have slightly different designs on them.  I’ve always wanted to try a pair of Scandinavian style mittens to see how they would fit and as I suspected, the way the thumb gussets are added, there is not enough space for my big hands.  I need additional stitches after the cuffs before starting the lower hand, more rows to make that section longer, and a different type of thumb gusset.  I can wear these – they sort of pull across the base of the thumb lower hand but that may ease up when these are blocked.

I sort of winged it re yarn and needles.  The pattern is written so that in order to get all the different sizes you just change your needle size.  Well to get the size I wanted using fingering weight yarn (which the pattern is written for) I would have had a loosey-goosey fabric for my mitt.   So I decided to use DK weight yarn and guessed at needle size.  I not a huge fan of knitting colorwork but in small items I will do it – and I also tend to like knitting colorwork at a slightly denser gauge than normal since it makes my stitches more even – thus making these a warm pair of mitts.

I love the Latvian braid – so easy to do but I had never tried it before.  I may need to incorporate that into a sweater I plan to make.  The pattern does have a couple issues – after you pick the thumb stitches back up the chart does not match up with where you left off; however, it was easy to figure out what it should be.  Also the decreases right before you cast off the thumb were majorly off but I was able to figure out that as well.

It was an interesting project to knit, I learned the braid and also a new to me bind off that I like and have a pair of pretty mitts but also learned this is not a pattern style that fits me well so will stick to my basic mitten style.

After finishing the mitts I cast on a striped cowl knit as a tube – using the left over mitts yarn and some other colors but no pic of that yet.

And another snowy weekend

Last weekend was snowy and we’ve had snow the last 3 days.  Yesterday when I opened the door to look out it was very pretty – that wet heavy snow that coats all the trees.

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It’s pretty much all melted off the trees by the end of the day yesterday but has left a nice coating of ice on the sidewalk outside my door.

This weekend has been cleaning (between coffee breaks that kept getting longer) but lots of stuff to straighten out, put away, etc.  Clutter everywhere I look that is not in its rightful home.  I need a couple trips to the dumpsters with recycling, boxes and stuff but after seeing the ice, will wait because I think it will melt off today and be safer to traverse another day.

The x-mas tree is still up but later today or in the evenings this week I’ll start taking off the ornaments and wrapping them up so by next weekend all the x-mas stuff should be put away.  I did really enjoy not decorating the tree until x-mas eve and then enjoying it for a month afterward (rather than how many people put it up a month before x-mas and take it down shortly after).

Hopping back and forth between several knitting projects – a linen stitch cowl in silky yarn, 20200122_3

I love this yarn  – its Hand Maiden Sea Silk and the colorway is Puffin.  This project will take a while but it’s an easy one to pick up and put down.

I started on a dish cloth in Teal Cascade Ultra Pima Fine.  I’ll be working on a group of these in different colors, each one in a different stitch pattern and picking stitches out of a book I have called 400 Knitting Stitches by Potter Craft.  This one is the Ridge Stitch.

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Also working on the red hooded blanket but it just looks like a larger triangle of garter stitch than last time I took a photo.  And Monday a Flash Knit Along starts for the ESK Yarnathon – knitting a pair of mittens or mitts from Skeindeer Knits (lovely colorwork stuff).   Start Jan 27 and finish on Feb. 7 – I think I can do that with the pair of fingerless mitts in worsted weight I plan to make.

A snowy cold weekend

Burrr… it has been really cold the past four or five days – temps in single digits and wind chills below zero, along with the 5-6″ of new snow that arrived Friday night into Saturday.   I did venture out for breakfast with a friend this morning and that was enough out in the cold – I think it was 4 degrees at the time.  The rest of the day I’ve been puttering around with a few things and knitting.

Several of the linen stitch mug rugs I’ve been making from stash are now done.   The one I was turning into a button flap card pouch is still not dry from blocking, but here are the other things off the needs in the last couple of days.

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The one above is one of my favorites — I used up the last little bit to make a fob to attach to my key chain.  This little “book bag” can hold several dollar coins – I like to keep them handy in case I loose a bus ticket.  It’s 2″ square.

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The photo above is a close up of another of my favorite ones.  I made it as long as I could with the scraps I had left and it ended up just over 6″ x 11″ and fits on the table next to wear I knit nicely.  The table/cabinet has a wicker insert in the top and I keep losing pins or stitch markers in the wicker or getting them stuck there.  This will cover that entire area.

I did think about taking down the Christmas tree this weekend but never got around to it – perhaps next weekend instead.

I’m not looking forward to heading out to the bus stop for work tomorrow morning but at least the low temp for tonight is several degrees warmer than it was when I went out for breakfast this morning.  Good thing I’ve got all those wooly knits to pile on.

Seeing Red

It’s funny how some times it seems I’m stuck in a color rut.   There are many times when I would be working on a sewing project and the colors were the same as my current knitting project.   Right now that color rut seems to be red.   I’ve got the Guernsey Wrap that is bright red and I need to make a baby blanket and what color did I find for that – dark red.

Since I’m trying to work from stash this year (12 days into the new year and not a single yarn order has been placed – at this point last year three separate orders had been placed).   So I looked up what I had in worsted weight that was machine wash and dry since it’s for a baby and Cascade 220 Superwash was my choice and I knew where the red was so grabbed that.

I’m making theHooded Baby Wrap with Ears – looks like a teddy bear ears – but I’m going to make it a bit bigger than the pattern calls for. I’m also changing the pattern slightly to give it an edging – it’s knit on the diagonal and is a super easy beginner type project.

Here’s my start from yesterday.

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Lovely squishy garter stitch.  The color in the top photo is true.  Very much a tv watching sort of knit since you do the same thing every row.  I was very lazy yesterday afternoon and evening – started a free trial of Masterpiece and spent it knitting and watching Masterpiece shows.  A bit disappointed with the Masterpiece channel – not much I really want to watch – granted I have seen a lot of them – but there were two or three series that looked really interesting but they are in foreign languages so that was disappointing.  I’ll cancel before the free trial expires but I did see a couple good shows.

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I’m being a bit more productive today – doing some chores before I go make a big bowl of popcorn for lunch and do some more knitting.  I want to finish this mug rug today — which I decided last night will not be a mug rug after all but I will fold it in half, put a zipper in the top and sew the sides to make a zippered coin purse.

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This brilliant idea came to me after digging for something in my bag/purse and coming up with a handful of loose change that had collected in the bottom.  I may need to turn more mug rugs into purse accessories – sunglass case and other goodies.

We did not get much from the second wave of the winter storm yesterday – only a dusting of snow compared to 6″ they thought we might get – I’ll take 3″ total over 12″ total any day but dang when I opened the door to look out that wind is cold.  I think winter has finally arrived to stay.

Snow fall

I was very pleased this morning when I looked out the door to see that we did NOT get the 7″ to 12″ of snow that was predicted for last night.   It was sleeting like crazy as I got off the bus and the sidewalks were slippery but made it safely home – despite the 15 or so wooden steps and metal railing I have to go down being covered with a coating of ice.  The apt. snow removal guys have already been thru and it looks like there may be about 1/2″ of ice under the snow but with the snow on top at least it won’t be so slippery and only about  2″ or maybe 3″ at most of snow.  Of course there is more snow coming today so who knows how much we’ll end up with.  I have nowhere I need to be this weekend so will stay safe and snug inside.

I’ve been busy knitting on some small projects.  I love the look of linen stitch – its the knit version of looking like weaving and some yarns are so pretty in it.  I really love the look of single plies rather than plied yarns.   One of the first mug rugs I was making I decided to turn into a little envelope type pouch for holding the ID card, insurance card, bus tickets I carry with me all the time.  I improvised a front flap with a button hole in it.  It needs to be blocked and then side sews sewn and button added but here it is folded the way it will look.

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I also finished one mug rug and am about 3/4 of the way thru a second.  These make great little gifts, with or without a matching coffee mug.  I definitely need to keep the one I’m still working on since it matches my favorite pottery mug so well.

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And I got one chart repeat done on my Guernsey Wrap.

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