Bags O’ Knitting

September 26, 2007 at 7:40 pm | Posted in knitting, stash, swap | 6 Comments

I just love seeing how people organize their stash and am always hoping to get some inspiration for my own. The stash set up I most envy is this one. Her set up is beautiful and I’ve already debated whether or not my office was big enough to accomodate those Ikea shelves. I have to admit though, my stash is teeny tiny in comparison to most. The cost of yarn makes it a luxury for me so I mostly have just enough yarn for the projects I am working on. In order to keep my projects from being strewn from one end of the house to the other, I came up with this system:

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Green Eddie Bauer = Lace yarn and needles for Secrets stole
Bright Green = Ravelry Scarf exchange scarf
White = Washcloth city
Pink = Forest Canopy shawl
Doggie = Sock yarn and DPN’s for Pomotomus socks
Little flower bag = Harvest Sock exchange socks

It’s kind of simple but it works well. I have plans to eventually knit a bunch of different project bags..maybe like the one in Knitting Daily today.

Speaking of Harvest Sock Swap socks…I finally got my match and will be making a sock for the lovely Marisol. I’m pretty sure of the pattern I’ll be using but now I need to find the perfect yarn.

A really nice knit blog I’ve been reading lately is Lime and Violet’s Daily Chum. I’m sure I’m late in jumping on the L&V bandwagon but if you haven’t read it yet I recommend giving it a visit. There is an interesting little tidbit posted every day.

As far as my own knitting progress goes, I’m still working on the scarf for the exchange mostly. It’s getting pretty close to completion but then I’m in weaving hell. I don’t want to elaborate more because I want it to be a surprise for its recipient, but once he’s received it I’ll post some pictures and you’ll see what I mean. Incidently, if you have a sec take a gander on over to Kyle’s blog. He has an amazing stash!

Lastly, tomorrow night is the Light the Night walk here in Jacksonville for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. I’ve seen first hand what great work they do and I’ll be walking in honor of many children and families I’ve met as a pediatric oncology nurse. If you’d like to learn more, please click on the button on my sidebar or read more on my Light the Night page.

Lacey Love

September 15, 2007 at 12:14 pm | Posted in knitalong, knitting, lace | 7 Comments

In the last week I have discovered two things. The first thing I discovered is that I love lace. I may even be bordering on lace obsession. I recently joined the Secrets of the Stole KAL and thought that before I jump into the stole, I should practice a bit on some beginner lace patterns. I bought the Spring Things and Forest Canopy shawl patterns to try out and so far I’ve cast on, and ripped out the Forest Canopy shawl 4 times. Which leads me to the second thing I’ve discovered which is that knitting lace has been the single most frustrating thing I have tried since I learned to knit. The skills required aren’t difficult (at least so far). All I’ve had to do is some knit, purl, yo, ssk and s1k1psso….easy right? The learning curve for me has been in trying to keep my stitches even, but even more so, concentrating on not losing my place. You also really have to swatch to test your gauge so that you get a fabric you are happy with.

I finally went to my LYS and picked out the yarn and beads for my Secrets Stole. I’m using Lane Borgosesia Cashwool in a forest green color on size 4 bamboo straight needles. Chris had to sand down the points of the needles so they were nice and sharp for getting under this teeny tiny yarn. The beads were courtesy of my sister and are a pale pink size 8 seed beed.

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When I first tried out the swatch for the stole, I just couldn’t believe people knit with this size yarn! My fingers were fumbling all over the place. After a few attempts I decided I would double strand the yarn and made it through my first swatch.

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You can see the beads on the swatch a little in the picture but they stand out a lot more in person. I really like the pink with the green. But you have to stretch the swatch a lot to really see the pattern. I could go up in needle size but then fabric just wasn’t as light and floaty as I wanted either. So, I restarted the swatch and decided to stick with it and knit it single stranded. This is where the frustration really kicked in. I would start to knit, the phone would ring, I’d answer the phone, get to the end of a row, and be missing a stitch. Grrrr. I think I ripped back the swatch at least 8 more times and was about to give up, but on the last try it all came together.

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I think I definitely like the single stranded swatch the best and now I’m really excited about starting the stole. One thing I do have to practice is casting off. I used a regular bind off and it came out really tight and cinched the yarn a bit.

Even after all of the frustration, I loved knitting the swatch and have since picked up 3 or 4 more lace patterns to try. My LYS has a yarn shipment coming in this week and there is some fingering weight yarn in that shipment that would be beautiful for the Forest Canopy Shawl. Plus..this past weekend we took advantage of an end of summer sale at Lowes so now I have a new, favorite knitting spot.

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Christmas Around the World Knitters Swap Questionaire

September 4, 2007 at 7:44 pm | Posted in knitting, swap | 4 Comments

Are you religious?
Well, I think I am in my own way. I do not subscribe to a particular religion but at this stage in my life it’s something I’m sort of searching for and trying to learn a lot about. I would call myself nondenominational Christian.

How long have you been knitting? 1 year
Would you consider yourself a Beginner, Intermediate or Advanced? Intermediate

Do you have any other hobbies besides knitting?
Knitting is really my only real hobby though there are a lot of things that I’m interested in trying.

Favorite color(s)?
I love blues, greens, pinks and earthy tones

Do you collect anything?
Although I’m new to it, I am trying hard to start an Interweave Knits collection. I search everywhere for back issues.

Are you allergic to any fibers or animals? No

Do you have any pets?
One dog named Lucy.

Coffee, Tea, or Hot Chocolate?
Recently Tea! My husband and I are currently dabbling in all different flavors but I still love Chai the most because it’s spicy.

Cookies or Sweets?
I prefer cookies over hard or sugary candy, but I prefer chocolate over everything!

Do you knit socks?
Yes! I love to knit socks!

If not socks then what? (tell us about your favorite knits)
I really like to try new things so I don’t know if I have a favorite thing yet. Most of my knits are more for fun than warmth (I live in Florida) but I do love to make bags and socks. I’m itching to try a sweater because I haven’t tried one yet.

Do you put up a Christmas tree? If not then what do you do? Yes, we do put up a tree. My husband and I have also started an ornament collection in order to start a new family tradition. Whenever we travel somewhere we try to pick up an ornament to remember that place and we started it on our honeymoon. We also get one new ornament a year to commemorate another Christmas as a couple.

Favorite holiday treats? Chocolate!

Favorite holiday smells?
I love the smell of cinnamon at Christmas. I always have some kind of Cinnamon Potpourri on the stove.

Do you celebrate Christmas in a traditional or unconventional way? Please elaborate.
My family is pretty traditional at Christmas. We put up trees, fill stockings, open gifts on Christmas morning.

What are your favorite holiday traditions?
We have many! Every single year, as long as I can remember, my family has been together for Christmas. Now as adults we pick one house to gather at on Christmas Eve for a sleepover and we all get into our pajamas while we watch Christmas movies and wrap presents. Then at about 6:00am my niece and nephew get to wake everyone up (only after they’ve turned on the coffeemaker!) and we open presents. Once presents are opened we have breakfast and then go home to nap. Then, we all meet up again for dinner! Christmas has been the same for years and years, we’ve just added new family members along the way, and I can’t stand the thought of changing it.

Finish the sentence: “For me Christmas is all about….”
Spending time with family.

If you were a Christmas ornament you would be…….?
I think I would be a snowglobe.

What was your favorite gift you’ve ever received? Or given?
About 6 years ago my dad, all on his own, put a digital camera on layaway for me and secretly paid it off and gave it to me. My mom didn’t even know about it until right before Christmas. The fact that he thought specifically about what he wanted me to have and put the effort into getting it (vs. letting my mom do all the shopping like she normally does) was so touching to me. And, last year my hubby got me my first gift certificate to buy knitting stuff..I thought it was very sweet.

When do you start your Christmas?
If you mean shopping, we start around Thanksgiving and yes, I’m one of the crazy women out at 4:00am on Black Friday. It’s another tradition for me, my sister and my mom. We start decorating the weekend after Thanksgiving.

Do you send Christmas cards? Do you make them or buy them?
Last year was the first year I’ve ever sent them because it was my first Christmas married. We made our card with photos on Shutterfly so we did both..made them but also bought them.

What is your favorite Christmas dish?
My sister’s breakfast egg casserole on Christmas morning is my favorite. My favorite Christmas dinner item is my mom’s cranberry sauce with mandarin oranges and walnuts…yum!!

Carolers are at your door. What do you do?
Sing along!

When do you open presents? Christmas eve or Christmas morning?
Christmas morning but on Christmas Eve we have a family white elephant swap so we get to open the swap gift, but you never know if it’s going to be a “gently used” or new item.

Do you celebrate with family or friends or both?
Mostly family but sometimes neighbors come for dinner or dessert.

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