A First Year of Knitting

December 31, 2007 at 5:49 pm | Posted in finished objects, knitting | 4 Comments

This has been a wonderful year for me in regards to knitting. In November of 2006 I picked up my first yarn and knitting needles and taught myself a new craft. I started out with a sort of “Ingridized” continental style of knitting and then I was off and running with my first few swatches. My very first project was a Booga Bag, which not only helped me hone my basic knitting skills, it also introduced me to felting. Not one to back down from a challenge I moved on from the Booga Bag to a pair of Twisted Rib socks followed by cableing with the Brea Bag. I think it was right around the time of the Brea Bag that I discovered what wonders lay within the walls of my local yarn store. At that point I realized this was no simple hobby I had picked up.

The owner of my LYS was the first person to explain yarn weights, stitch definition, and fibers to me in a way that made me realize I had more to learn than knit and purl. I moved on from knitting with one color to two, and then to stranded knitting with the Center Square hat and Endpaper Mitts. I finished a pair of Monkey socks , a lace shawl and even learned entrelac.
About the time I realized there was more to knitting than acrylic, I also realized there was an entire community of people I could reach out to for support, advice, knowledge and a common love of all things knitting. Reading knit blogs moved from simple interest to addiction and I found myself swapping knitted items that I had made myself..for another real person to wear! Next came Ravelry and it’s forums and groups, and knit-alongs, and more swaps, and knitting podcasts and before I knew it I had become a part of the community I had previously admired from afar.

So in my first year of knitting I have completed 13 projects and have several on the needles that I hope to move from WIP to FO in the year 2008.

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1. Twisted Rib Socks, 2. Brea Bag, 3. Booga Bag, 4. Calorimetry, 5. Baker Boy Cap, 6. Fiber Trends Felts Clogs, 7. Monkey Socks, 8. Center Square Hat, 9. Forest Canopy Shawl, 10. Pine Tree Sachet, 11. Danica, 12. Fiber Trends Felted Clogs, 13. ornament

I have learned so much in my first year of knitting but still have so much yet to learn. I have many knitterly goals for the year 2008 such as:
1. Completing my first sweater
2. Taking a few classes to improve on some of my self taught techniques.
3. Learning to more easily correct my mistakes without ripping all the way back.
4. Tackling a challenging lacework pattern..with beads.
5. Continuing to gain a better understanding about fibers and yarns and definitely expand my stash.
6. Attending a knit-in at my LYS.
7. Giving the blog a new look for the new year.

There’s lots to do but also lots to be proud of over the last year.
Happy New Year to all of my knitting friends!

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Christmas Eve Eve

December 23, 2007 at 3:00 pm | Posted in finished objects, knitting, swap | Leave a comment

After what might easily have won the prize for “The Worst Week at Work Ever”, I’m now immensely relieved to be off until the 27th.

I have to say, Chris and I have had it really easy this holiday season as far as stress-free gifting. We did a little shopping on our cruise, then did a little back in November. We did a little online and have been completed finished for awhile.

Of course this is not including swap gifts and knitting because there definitely was some panic to get those done. Thankfully, the 3rd and final package went out last Monday so now I’m just waiting for my own swap packages to arrive. I’m hoping the recipient of the Christmas Package likes these:

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They are toasty warm on a chilly night.

When I finished the clogs I was still in the Christmas knitting spirit, so I made one of these and am planning to make a few more tonight.

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Isn’t it cute? You can download the pattern here at Kalamazoo Knits’ Etsy shop. This was another fun pickup from Lime and Violet’s Daily Chum.

The other evening I was sitting here in the house alone, waiting for Chris to get home from work, and I finally picked up the yarn and pattern for Eunny Jang’s Anemoi Mittens. I purchased the pattern and yarn many months ago but never had the chance to make them. Well, 3 evenings later I have this in my “next to the sofa knitting” basket:

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I think I can finish the pair by the time we fly to Washington in January. It will be nice to have some warm mittens for chilly Pacific Northwest weather.

Lastly, I wanted to congratulate my sister and new brother-in-law! Last Saturday was their wedding and it turned out just beautifully. Here they are with my parents:

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I also wanted to wish all of my knitting friends a Merry Christmas and a Happy and Blessed New Year.

Christmas knitting almost done!

December 12, 2007 at 9:50 pm | Posted in finished objects, knitting, swap | 2 Comments

Vacation is officially over and I’ve settled back into work and getting ready for the holidays. I’ve also been working hard to finish knitting for the swaps I’ve joined. Speaking of swaps, today I got my package from the Ravelry Scarf Exchange and it was from my new knitting friend Kim from Canada. She totally spoiled me!

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First off, the scarf was beautiful and it was made out of a lovely bamboo yarn that’s so soft! It’s perfect for Florida wear and I’ve even got a jacket that will match it beautifully. Also in the package was some chocolate from Switzerland that’s really yummy, a vanilla scented candle, some cotton chenille yarn and a pattern for a flower washcloth, a knitting themed notepad, sticky notes in the shape of an “I”, lovely lemon verbena soap and some gummy candies that my husband hasn’t stopped munching on. The best part about this exchange is that she and I have become quite regular pen pals. Thanks so much Kim, I’m so glad we got paired up!

I also completed and sent off my own scarf to it’s recipient, Kyle. He’s already received it so I’m safe to post a picture:

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The pattern is Danica from Knitty and it’s made with Paton’s Classic Merino. The model is my very cute hubby. It was my first try at entrelac and I’m happy with how it came out. I hope Kyle was happy with it as well.

I also finished the sock for the Harvest Sock Swap and mailed it this past weekend. I’m hoping Marisol receives the package by the end of this week. Sadly there will be no pictures of the sock because I forgot to take pictures before I mailed it. Oh well, once Marisol receives it I can reveal the pattern and yarn.

In between the frantic swap knitting I took an evening off and whipped up this little Christmas sachet.

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It was a really quick knit, maybe a 2 hours from start to finish, and it’s filled with lentils to keep it standing up and apple cinnamon potpourri to give it a Christmasy scent. It was really fun to make and is a great way to use up some leftover sock yarn. I’m hoping I can knit up a few of these for co-workers. I came across the pattern while perusing Lime and Violet’s Daily Chum where it was featured. The pattern was created by Whitney, it’s free, and it can be found here. While you’re at it, take a look at the whole blog. There are tons of really great crafty patterns!

Finally, I have some pictures of the completely blocked Forest Canopy Shawl that is now wrapped and will soon be on the way to my mother-in-law for Christmas. The pictures show the yarn colorway really well.

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With a little luck I’ll be able to finish up the last of the swaps. I still have to finish up the International Christmas Exchange but I’m determined to mail it by Saturday. Once that’s finished, I may be able to get a few sachets completed. I’m afraid I overextended myself in swaps so I think my Christmas knitting has been reduced from a list of about 12 items down to one, the Forest Canopy Shawl I’ve already finished. I have to admit, I’ll be glad once all of my obligations are met because after the holidays I’ve got my heart set on starting this:

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It’s from the current issue of Interweave Knits and I’m knitting it for myself. I’m also excited because Chris and I booked our tickets to Seattle for January. We’ll be visiting his family and I’m planning on hitting a yarn store or two in Seattle and Tacoma. If anyone has been there, please tell me the best places to go!

Until next time..Happy Holidays!

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