Wednesday, January 31, 2007

see the silk!

See the beauty! Today, after a long and somewhat challenging day, I arrived home to find an intriguing envelope on my doorstep! Oh, how welcome that sight was! Inside was such a kind note from Julie and tea: Chocolate Mint Rooibos and Crème Brule Rooibos, and this:

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This is silk yarn that is spun from recycled Indian saris!! Isn't that amazing!?!? The colours are so complex and vibrant. The yarn itself feels soft and silky, but sturdy. See how the various strands of silk intertwine:

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There must be a hundred colours in here!

I don't know yet what I'll make with this. I'm thinking of pairing it with a skein of green linen I have and making a kimono-style top. But there's the Simple Bodice pattern by Stitch Diva ( ) and this yarn would be beautiful as the waist detail lace... Or I could use it on its own as a belt, purse, hat, scarf, even fingerless gloves! You know, I will have so much fun just mulling this over for days and days.... "spinning" out the anticipation (so to speak).

The latest finished knit object is a cotton angora sleeping hat (night cap) for my friend Rose. When you live in the frozen North (sort of), like I do, flannel sheets and flannel nightgowns aren't enough. Yep. We wear sleeping socks. And, some people wear hats. Okay, so it's just me who wears a sleeping hat! But I can tell you it makes all the difference! And its good for staying up late to write or read, kind of like Jo's cap in Little Women. Yes, a sleeping hat is a good thing and I have many designs for these in my head.

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cotton angora. soft. warm. sigh....

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Another Noro!

I enjoyed making the top-down Noro Silk Garden hat so much I made another one! This one has a picot edge and no ribbing. Its about to go out in the mail today and I hope its new owner will like it!

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Monday, January 22, 2007

Oh, Yeah! Hat!

Here it is, my beautiful new hat:

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and here's a close-up, so you can see the gorgeous colour changes here:

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This took less than one skein of Noro Silk Garden and is knit top-down. I knit for several hours yesterday, but all in all it was done in two days. Its my own design, so I'll write up the pattern soon.

I love it and can't wait to wear it today!

Sunday, January 21, 2007

winter in fact

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I would send you pictures of snow, but you've seen that before, so instead I'll send you the images that winter's cold imposes - warm toasty slippers and cosy wool hats! On the left are the Butterfly Slippers and on the right, the beginnings of my hat from Noro Silk Garden. (Yes, I'm using a top-down pattern so I can use every bit of this beautiful yarn!)

The dishes haven't been done, the driveway hasn't been shoveled, the house hasn't been cleaned, but I've done some knitting and that's productive enough for a winter's weekend!

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Warm Hands and Feet

Here is my latest project...I call them Butterfly Slippers, because they're for my internet friend, Mingbutterfly. This is from a vintage pattern, that I modified to be higher around the ankles (for warmth). The yarn is Balzac washable wool. I love it. Its study and soft - perfect for slippers! (PS - I only tried it on for one second on a Very clean foot.)

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My project before this was for Julie. These are from Louisa Harding Kimono Angora, and only used one skein. The pattern is from the Louisa Harding Winter Landscapes book.

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I'm not very sure about the pooling of the colour on the palms, but the the variegated yarn looks great on the lace part. Here is a close-up of the lace:

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I have a beautiful skein of Noro Silk Garden in deep blues that Julie sent me and my next project will be a hat for myself! It is freezing here and I have no hat! What's that saying about the cobbler's children going without shoes???

Sunday, January 14, 2007

our little bit of snow

...We had Snow!

The air is thick with swirls of fallen flakes, so that the scene out my window looks like fog is enveloping the house. The sun is rising slowly, and seems cold and distant. I am happy to curl up on the couch in the front room, where I can be warm and look at these scenes through the lace curtains over the bow windows:

A little bit of stray snow....

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just enough to leave footprints...

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A Winter Surprise
~Solveig Russel

Last night while I was sleeping
The snow came softly down
And slipped on all the shrubbery
A shining snowflake gown

I guess that every little bush
Felt startled with surprise,
To find itself a cotton plant
On opening its eyes.

~Margaret Hillert

Someone in the sky last night
Had an awful pillow fight,
And when I woke today I found
All the feathers on the ground.

Today is going to be a knitting day...after winding yarn and stocking my stash in my new bookcase, my boyfriend will knock on the door, and I'll make tea. Later, a friend is coming over and we'll gather up our current knitting projects and my ancient and vintage booklets and head for the yarn shop. Dee is working today, so we'll talk yarn and vintage patterns and plan a display of antique knitting. My friend will spend the gift certificate I gave her on yarn and beads. I'll try to resist buying yarn. We'll come back, have tea and gingerbread cake, and knit and watch Project Runway videos. Then I'll make a warm, cosy dinner (that will involve baked potatoes).

That's my plan anyway, for this snowy Sunday...

Sunday, January 7, 2007

a place to keep yarn

Yesterday my sweetheart and I put together the glass-front cabinet that he ordered for me for Christmas, to hold my yarn. We had fun with it and only got crabby with each other once: "Where's the screwdriver? What did you do with the screwdriver? Will you leave it here for God's sake where I can reach it!?" "I didn't *have* the screwdriver! *You* had the screwdriver! Why do you have to lose track of all the tools!?" Oh. There's the screwdriver - under the directions...

There was something so comforting about building this beautiful mahogany cabinet and looking forward to the soothing activity of pouring through my yarns and sorting them and putting them away. I imagine gazing at the neatly wound skeins through the glass doors and revelling in my lovely stash.

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I did some of that sorting and stashing today, before a little shopping trip with my friend Rose and her family. Yes, that's all sock yarn in the photo: Koigu, Lorna's Laces, and Claudia handpaints.

Monday, January 1, 2007

Rabbit Rabbit

rabbit rabbit (for good luck) and Happy New Year!

Many of my friends are contemplating their beliefs and inner philosophies as they approach this fresh New Year. Others are seriously planning improvements in their lives in order to ensure a better year to come. Both are laudable endeavors. But I am not of that sterling, solid temperament. My first thoughts on entering this new year were...

"What the hell happened to all the great knitting projects I was going to accomplish in 2006???"


"What am I going to knit in 2007?"

To help in this New Year's planning project, I have diligently searched through my knitting bags, the bags under the couch, beneath the cushions of the couch and chair, and the photos in my computer and have compiled what I believe is the definitive list of 2006 knitting projects - the finished and the unfinished. This list is essential to my plans for a more thoughtful, a kinder, a more temperately plan-full year of knitting in 2007; in other words - more finished objects, less ill-conceived designs, fewer quickie addictive little brainless knits, and more - much more - monogamous knitting (finishing one project before starting another).

This list has also helped me to determine friends I have neglected this last year...for instance, I have been talking for two years now about making a prayer shawl for the Professor (I have the yarn and have created the design but have not even started on it) and this past year I started - but did not get further than the first heel on - pair of white embroidered socks for my Deacon friend Daniel to wear in the chapel. Other friends received knitting but I wasn't happy with what I designed for them and want to try again (the Secret Garden shawl needs to be longer and in a thinner, silkier yarn; Carina needs something black; Rose needs a red lace scarf; Julie is missing the gloves that were supposed to go with her scarf). And Jule definitely needs the vintage blouses I've begun but never completed - all three so close to being done!

Determined! I need to be more determined!! The New Year gives me more potential time, but it doesn't change me from who, essentially, I am: creative, chaotic, lacking in pattern-commitment, easily bored with tedious repetitive stitches, and addicted to trial-and-error rather than careful planning, and way too easily seduced by the new, pretty yarn that catches my eye and whistles in my direction! I take joy in the new design, the new yarn, the lovely colours and the delicious feel of the fibers. I cannot promise I will ever be a monogamous knitter. But I do promise that 2007 will be full of new ideas and coluorful pictures, a few of my own patterns and lots of knitted gifts.

2006 knits
(S-A means its my own original design)


2 Bath Sets (knitted bowls and cloths) S-A

Apple Green Alpaca Scarf S-A

Black cotton Bistro shirt S-A

Black Silk Hat w/ Pompom

Black Manos John Hat S-A

Black Stria Cotton Shrug

Blue angora scarf

Blue Silk Legwarmers

California Roll cat toy S-A

Carina beaded gloves S-A

Carina bubble scarf S-A

Commemorate scarf – Sausage S-A

Commemorate scarf – Shadey S-A

Cupcake blouse

Finger puppets bag

Green Eyelash scarf

Holly’s Secret Garden Shawl S-A

Julie Rose Lace scarf S-A

Leopard Angora scarf

Marky Koigu Gloves S-A

Noro pillow S-A

Picot Edge Shrug S-A

Red ruffle scarf S-A

Rose Leaf gloves S-A

Sea-wave Aqua Shawl

Tiny Sock Earrings

Vintage Style Pink Silk Socks S-A


1933 Blouse in Black Koigu

Cathedral windows scarf S-A

Daniel’s chapel socks S-A

Drowning shawl/scarf S-A

Haze Swallowtail Shawl

Finger puppets HP S-A

Purple Loop Shrug

Rose Garden Socks S-A

Black Mock-T Blouse S-A

Black Vintage Barista Blouse S-A

Aqua Water Waves Shawl S-A

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