As the saying goes "the eyes are bigger than the stomach" or in yarnspeak "I packed way more projects than any human could finish in ten days". (Well, if the weather had been really bad, I was ready for it!)
Here are the projects I started while on vacation.
It's been two summers since I actually had a vacation. My family decided I really am in need of a break (especially after middle son's wedding). So northern Michigan bound we are!
Since no one lets me drive on trips anymore, I figured I could get a lot of knitting done. First project up: socks for my just graduated high school niece. Socks were knitted using Cascade Fixation in "Arizona Sunset". Congrats, Becca A!
I have a tendency when packing for vacation to think I will start and finish more projects than humanly possible. (Hey, it might rain or be a crappy day on the lake...) My family is placing bets as to how many items I might actually finish. Since I'm not sure how many I brought, I can't say how much yarn came with me (hey, I left the spinning wheel home this time!).
I will leave you with another finished project, (I had to weave in the ends). Entrelac Scarf, made in Gina #16. (It's a much better photo op up here at the lake.)
With Summer upon us, (and my next project not quite ready for prime time post...) I thought I'd mention some fun authors and titles that deal with knitting, spinning, crochet, and needlework. Some (at least for me) were quick reads, but humorous all the same. I should mention, all are mysteries.
Author: Sally Goldenbaum The Seaside Knitters Series. The series starts with "Death by Cashmere" and has eight books so far. I would like to be invited to the Friday night deck dinner.
Author: Amanda Lee The heroine owns a thread shop in a small town in the Pacific Northwest. The series starts with "The Quick and The Thread".
Author: Mary Canadeo The Black Sheep Mysteries. Knit shop set in New England, the first in the series is "While My Pretty One Knits." (Honest, the yarn shops in my area are much friendlier with each other.
Author: Monica Ferris Set in Excelsior, Minnesota, the series starts with" "Crewel World". I will tell you that "Crewel Yule" is a wonderful description (without the murder) of the TNNA Nashville Market that I attend in late winter.
Author: Maggie Sefton The Kelly Flynn series starts with "Knit One, Kill Two". Good story lines, but sometimes the attempt at conversational language can be frustrating.
Author: Molly MacRae The Haunted Yarn Shop Series I just discovered these books recently. I couldn't put them down, partly because of how much they made me laugh. What could be more fun than a cat that came from nowhere and a ghost that watches too much TV?
Author: Barbara Bretton Starts with "Casting Spells" and is the story of a witch who hasn't developed her full powers, but owns a fiber shop in a town that looks like a miniature Salem. I love the never ending basket of roving. This series kept me laughing but also on the edge of my seat with the struggle between good and evil.
Author: Betty Hechtman The titles of the first two books say it all "Hooked on Murder" and "Dead Men Don't Crochet". Enter the world of Molly Pink and the Tarzana Hookers, for laughter, romance and murderous mayhem.
Most of these books include a pattern and usually a recipe for a food that is mentioned.
Have you ever fallen in love with a pattern by one company and a yarn by another? Think they'll work great together? Well, here is my story......
I've been looking for a project to use Berroco Maya, a lovely yarn that is a blend of Pima Cotton and Alpaca. I'm also in love with the "Sunny Tee" pattern from Knit One Crochet Too, which calls for Nautika yarn, which is Microfiber and Nylon. I've seen both yarns knitted and love them both. Both recommend a size 8 needle. Great, this should work.
So, I started the back of Sunny Tee with the Maya. I finished it fairly quickly with no problems. It's a two piece, basic summer top with simple yarn overs and increases and decreases.
I should be done in no time, right! Well apparently the Knitting Gods were not amused. Keep in mind, this pattern is knit identically back and front until the scoop neck for the front. I did the increases and decreases, had stitches on the holder for the front neck, get up to where I should be ready to stitch the first shoulder, and behold! Three stitches short on the right shoulder. (I missed the last increase at the beginning of a row.) Okay, frog it back, add the stitches, re-knit. Three needle bind-off on left shoulder. Oh wait it should have been the actual left shoulder, not the one on my left......Take out, bind-off the correct shoulder. Pick up stitches for neck edge, wait there's an extra live stitch on the front. Adjust and pick up one less. Knit neck edge. Knit armhole edges. Mattress stitch first side. Now, other shoulder seam. Wait, why am I missing two inches of neck edging and why does the front have a weird section of yarn hanging? Somehow, my ends undid themselves and unraveled. So, frog back to original neck decreases, re-knit to shoulder again.
Time to knit neck edge again. Exact number of live stitches on front(?????) Knit, start to bind-off, run out of yarn six stitches from end. Deep breath, do not throw project out of car window on DC Beltway. Try again, this time success.
Four days later, bind-off second shoulder. Pack project and yarn to take to work to finish. Arrive at work, no project. Must be on the table at home. Come home to find, that no, it fell out of the bag on the way to the car. Fortunately, dogs did not eat it. Ignore project again for two days, put in bag to take on Friday. Arrive at shop, pull out sweater, no ball of yarn to finish it in bag.
Finished project. It knit up beautifully in the Maya.
I like the top so much, I'm making another. But to appease the Knitting Gods, I'm using Nautika on this one.....
It's been awhile since I've blogged. I promised myself that for the new year, I would not start a new project until I finished a previous one (no matter how many new shop models we need!). I was doing okay, as I'm still finishing Christmas presents that have now become birthday presents. But then, we got a new to us yarn in the mail.
Raggi Sock Yarn from Jarbo!
I had heard about this wonderous sock yarn from customers and when I found the rep who sold it, ordered some. I am absolutely in love with the yarn!
Having males in the family with large feet, I learned early on in my sock knitting adventures that boot socks made with worsted weight yarn is the way to go. (Otherwise, with regular sock yarn on a size 3 needle, I will be in the black hole of knitting* for weeks at a time.) Raggi is made to be knit on size 7-8 needles!
I cast on the first sock Friday evening, and finished it on Sunday. Keep in mind this son has size 12 feet and likes his boot socks to be extra tall. At this rate, the second sock should be done before his birthday on Sunday.
Pattern: Sock Recipe by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee
Yarn: Jarbo Raggi #15104
My family has an abundance of birthdays the first few months of the year, so the delayed Xmas gifts work for birthdays. For my niece, who turned 20 at the beginning of January, a pair of Cafe Au Lait fingerless gloves.
Pattern: Cafe au Lait by Paula McKeever Yarn: Sublime Cashmere Merino Silk dk Plum Noir
(Luckily for me, she's been out of town with the college swim team, so these will be waiting in her mailbox when she returns.)
Stay warm and Happy Knitting New Year!
*Black Hole of Knitting - when you knit for three hours and have only lengthened the knit piece by an inch (if you're lucky....)