Saturday 29 August 2009

It's Official

I'm announcing here and now that the J, officially, looks like a sweater. What a wonderful moment that is. Yay!

Even a non-knitter can tell that this is a garment now. You know how that goes ... what are you knitting? It's a jacket, see this is the collar and the front and this is the sides and ... OK, you might just have to believe me when I say it's going to be a jacket because I can tell it's not coming together for you, but it is, really.
And now I can't wait to get done. There's still another sleeve to go.We worked the decreases on either side of a centre 30 st panel, just to see how that would be. I like it. You'll have to imagine it with your arms down. It makes the knitting fun to do.

I'm working on this project until it's done, still faithful. I'm not sure why this is seen as a knitting virtue because it's not natural! I went to the library and got another movie for tonight, second sleeve here I come.


Monday 24 August 2009


Monogamy in general is good but monogamous knitting does not give me much to blog about. I am knitting and I am progressing. I can see it but I don't think you can. I think to you it must look like a slightly larger blob, which it is, but it is taking on some coat-like form now, except for several needles stuck in it.I have both sides done on my jacket. We weren't entirely sure about the sleeve when I started my first side section so when I got to the beginning of the sleeve I left it on the needle and started on the other side. Now I am going to start my second sleeve first. I'm really looking forward to getting one side done. It's coming together now. (I'm sure you can't tell from the very fuzzy photos. It's actually later in the evening and not as light as I had hoped.) Soon, soon you will be able to see the jacket emerging.

Saturday 22 August 2009

numbers on the brain

Don't you hate when you can't think of the rest of a rhyme or when a dumb song gets stuck in your head and you can't get it out? Thanks samm (see last post comment). Or the flip side when your brain is overfunctioning. Do you find that when you're knitting along, generally thinking of other things, there is a pause in your thoughts and the number 47 pops into your head, and then 48, 49. You are counting stitches unbeknownst to yourself. Somewhere in the back of your brain it's ticking off stitches that you don't even need to count. Right now I'm knitting garter stitch without having to count, just knit from one end to the other, turn and repeat. No problem, right? But my brain thinks there should be more to it than that. Stop counting! It's OK, really, we're doing fine here. I know what I am doing this time.

My J jacket is coming along but not too different than last time so I'm waiting until I have something spectacular to show you before presenting it again. I have been knitting on other projects too, small ones. I am almost finished a sample for a top down class which I am teaching on October 18 at the Unwind shop in Newmarker, ON .Just the sleeves to finish up. I am trying a new approach. Since a lot of knitters like to do a project-based class, I am doing this top down class with aran (heavy worsted) weight yarn and a large needle so that the sample produces a cardigan for a 3 month old. Usually the class does a teddy bear sized sample. I think the students will be able to complete about half of this sweater in class. That covers all of the pertinent technical parts of a top down and leaves the plain knitting to be finished at home. Between teaching the V-neck shaping, talking about general adaptations, fitting adjustments (assuming the knitter might some day tackle an adult sweater where fit really matters a lot), and showing where the knitter can add in their own design features, it takes all of the 3 hours to get that far. I'll finish this little guy up and take it down to the store to entice unwary knitters into my class, hee, hee, said the knitting spider to the fly.

I'm also reknitting a lovely beaded mitten ( which is really fun. I haven't done much beading, in fact this might be the first one, that's not possible is it? It is definitely the first project where I have had to string the beads and carry them along. It's easy, much easier than I thought it would be. And great results.I have all fall to knit the thumb, ha.


Wednesday 19 August 2009


Home again, home again, jiggity, jig. That's all I can remember of some sort of child's rhyme but that says it all, I'm home and trying to figure out where I was when I left. I've been cleaning, not the house, yuck, but my computer files. And now I'm back on track which means my lace knitting goes on the back burner for a bit. I have to say I love knitting this stitch pattern. It's a pattern from knitspot, called hillflowers. It's a stole but I have adapted it for a scarf by working less repeats, since the chances of getting a stole done are about nil at the moment. Otherwise it's the same, sort of but different, well I'm sure you know how that goes.And I love it. It's going to block out beautifully and although the pattern is not obvious in the very dark navy I really love the colour.
Today Bernice and I had another discussion on working the sleeves of the J jacket and now I think we're solid and ready to finish up. In our heads we're finished, on the needles maybe another week but only if it's a reasonable temperature for knitting, fingers crossed.


Friday 14 August 2009

Off to Camp

I'm back from the Sock Summit and recovered (almost). It was a fabulous time and I didn't even mind the nearly 23 hrs to get home (honestly!). Or the broken tooth while I was there (seriously!). I overheard someone say it was the "Woodstock" of the knitting world. I could believe it. It was terrific to see all these very famous knitters walking around. The number of socks in progress was awesome and the sheer energy bubbling around the place was something to behold.

Plus I have never seen so many skeins of sock yarn in my whole life and cannot imagine having to choose!! How could you decide which ones to buy? There were a very large number of "indy" dyers with a stunning range of colours and just different approaches to producing the product. I wanted to buy them all. Happily I was in my booth behaving myself (mostly). I did buy a cool book for Deb but she's not gotten it yet so I can't tell you ... pssst, but it's by Barbara Walker. And here she is!

She's a teeny, tiny, slip of a lady and Julia, my roomie, had a class with her and said her intellect was awesome. I didn't realise that she actually invented the SSK! Wow. History in the making. How cool is that? (I borrowed this photograph from Stephanie's blog as I was so busy watching Barbara I didn't take a picture.)

I had dinner on Saturday night with Buffy & Don of Shelridge Farm, the Prime Minister of Patternfish (Julia) and Lucy Neatby amongst others. Lucy was in fine fettle and her hair was screaming as usual and we'll be working on another book together sometime in the next year, if she ever is home long enough to staple her to the computer to work on it. Here's Lucy in her neon pink and blue glory.

Buffy was kind enough on Sunday to introduce me to Cookie A (below). She has an amazing hand for socks and I recommend her book "Sock Innovation". She's a lovely woman and is coming to Orillia in the fall for a retreat just north of here.

Was that enough name dropping? I did also see Meg Swanson but there was such a crowd around her it was only a glimpse. Nancy Bush was her usual gracious self and I saw Stephanie Pearl-McPhee working like a Trojan all through the show. They deserve a big hand as it was a very, very well run show. Overall I think that this really was one of the major knitting events of the decade and rumour has it that there will be more. I've even heard, possibly, maybe ... there might be a Sock Summit 2011 in Toronto. Now that would be cool!

Now, Al and I are sneaking off work early (leaving poor Sophy to hold the fort) to join Deb & Paul up at the cottage. Yea!


Wednesday 5 August 2009

one project down

I finished my scarf and now I'm starting to panic - did I bring enough projects!!There is no knitting store here in the village or in the next town. So I have been gazing at it in it's completeness. I soaked it and laid it out but will have a go at it with my blocking wires when I get home. Isn't the reversibleness (that's not really a word) great? I'm really just giving you the gears because I did bring 2 more projects with me. But I didn't expect to finish this one so soon. I have started a second scarf which is going well but is a very dark navy blue so not terrific to photograph yet. Next week I'm going to switch over to the J Jacket for the week. I'll put my book stand up with a good book in it and knit, knit, knit. I also put on some ridges in the car on the way up. So it's coming along.


Off to Portland

Well, Deb's off to camp and I'm off to Portland, OR today for the Sock Summit. It's shaping up to be the knitting event of the decade! I'm so amazed that there are so many luminaries at one event. Here's the teacher list:

My roomie for the trip, Julia of Patternfish is actually taking a class with Barbara Walker!! She's very excited to say the least. I expect to hear details : )

I'm taking our sock patterns and our books (and various other bits and bobs to sell) but I'm also taking the yummy sock yarn from Fibre-Isle (Prince Edward Island). Deb knit up a couple of sock samples in the natural coloured bison sock yarn (see her blog entry for July 21st below). That's one of the hand-painted skeins below. Lovely, lovely yarn. Sylvie's sister has a bison farm (?) ranch (?) in Quebec.

Sylvie also sent me a few non-sock kits to sell including the beautiful shawl below.
OK! Time to hit the road!


Sunday 2 August 2009

knitting surgery

I had been asked by a workmate of my husband's to see if there was anything I could do to resurrect this little guy.
He was knit by a grandmother and has passed through her 3 children. Doesn't he look well loved? I put the needles in as soon as I got him because there were open stitches in several places.
I unravelled him at the pink waist band and knit new pants for him. I stuffed him with the original parts I had removed. He's back in action but a little lumpier than he was. P took him to work today and I hope there was a happy reunion.
I am packing my bag to go to the cottage for 2 whole weeks. Yay. So far I have
the J jacket in the bag. This is knit in Cabin Fever Cottage Colours (that's appropriate no?), in rich red. I picked up one stitch for each ridge along the side of the Front panel, over the shoulder and down the side of the Back panel. I'm knitting the side of the jacket and then I will work down the sleeve to the wrist. It's interesting to work. Next I put in the silver scarf in the bag.
This is in alpaca laceweight I bought at Gateway Fibrework in Gravenhurst . It's so light and small it hardly takes up any room so I have some space for one more ball.
I have to knit this now because Bernice knit up a little bit and it's gorgeous. Check out for the beginning of a shawl in the black and white colourway. We both bought a ball of this fingering at Knitting Three Together shop in Huntsville a couple of weeks ago. There will still be room for a couple of balls of worsted weight to play with. I have a couple of ideas for changing up the raglan line of a top down which I want to try out. You might guess that this is a bit of a busman's holiday and you would be right. Here's hoping the weather is nice.

Saturday 1 August 2009


We both needed some TLC so 'the J' and I watched a 'oo7' movie and things are progressing nicely. Has anyone ever counted how many things 007 blows up or people he kills in any 10 minutes of the movie? We also watched all of the footage taken when they were making the movie and all of that was amazing. That's more than 1/2 of that side of the Front and Back done. I am working on both the Front & Back at the same time so the rows are long but I am progressing faster than I think. Mostly because all I look at is the Front.I am knitting sideways now from the top of the shoulder and soon, down to the wrist.

This is the first project I'm packing to take to camp next week (2 weeks at the cottage, yay). It's perfect for knitting while chatting to friends and family. I also have a 5 hour car trip to get there, an opportunity to garter stitch my way up north.