Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas - pssst...it's a sale!

Sweet Fiber yarns is having a holiday sale - 30% off all purchases over $30 (before shipping) - expires December 31, 2012. Canadians - shipping cost is $6 and don't forget there's HST.
Also, the Knit City colorway is still available on the Super Sweet Sock base, and also the Cashmerino Worsted base.

Free pattern from Tin Can Knits on ravelry.

and I'll be updating my Enabler tab as I see more sales, so if you get an update, and don't see any new changes to the Pages, look on that tab.

Happy Holidays.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Ta Da - # 12 of 12 Done!

Bound-off, finished, blocked, and pics -

Blue Water Mahogany Done

Project: Blue Water Mahogany Cardi
Pattern: Water and Stone by Veera Valimaki
Yarn: Verdant Gryphon Bugga in Dyeing Poison Frog (3.16 sk)
Needles: US 6 SN,
Size 38" for the 36" - but I adjusted the stitch count to fit me, rather than blindly following the pattern.
Time taken: 7 weeks elapsed from swatching to bind-off. Mostly knit in the evenings, weekends, and some lunch hours for the parts of the body. 1-1.5 weeks in there, I also took a break from knitting as I was doing a lot of keying for work..Need to save my wrists.

Mods: The pattern is intended to be mid-thigh, I shortened this so it's a length I'll really wear year round. I used a provisional cast-on for the start. I also did a twisted rib instead of a rib, and matched the length of the cuffs to the hem, and I added an inch at the waist, since I'm long-waisted. Bind-off is using JSSBO, purl side on the cable portion so it curled less.

The yarn softened up so much and it's so drapey, it's really lovely, and the yarn shows off the cables nicely. I really enjoyed knitting this pattern, and made the cables without a cable needle. It took a bit of attention at the beginning to make sure the shoulders were set up correctly, and I was a bit frustrated that the design required you to pick up the sides of the starting piece, but it turned out great, and it's a necessary evil to place the cardigan on the back so that it sits below the plain stockinette piece.


Back cable and neck (left), and double cable on the front (right):

Cardi Back and Neck Cables Cardi Right Front Double Cable

Front cable (left) and cuff (right):

Cardi Left Front Cable  Cardi Cuff

I had hoped to finish this by the end of the year, and ended up finishing earlier than expected.
So, now I'm swatching for my next love - Pull me Over, with SG Codex from my stash (a BFL-silk blend). It's worsted weight, so a  bit of a shift from the last project. Colorway is Captain Nemo which is a blue-green teal..more on the green side to my eye than blue.

SG Captain Nemo Codex

Saturday, December 08, 2012

Knitting the Sleeves

I've had a few revelations this week... I realized tonight that I have been blindly following patterns for sleeves. The one I'm currently knitting says to decrease every 3". This is too steep for my arms. It seems that I should be knitting 3-1/4" to 4" before decreasing and I should stop before I complete all of the decreases. I came home tonight and measured my arm, and around my elbow. I will definitely have to try it on again before completing the next decrease row.

Other discovered these last few days - Phillips' Ginger Ale Soda - so yummy! It's cool and gingery without the regular bit of ginger ale like Canada Dry...veerrry nice and Ottavio Italian Bakery. I had no idea they have a coffee shop there and food. I succumber to a loaf of bread, some Prosciutto, and lovely soft cheese - soooo yummy! then, went back for a few bottles of soda.

This weekend - to put up my Christmas tree (I hope); also, Christmas Moss St. Market and a few errands. Hopefully, good weather - it's still in the 50s these days (yay!)

Also, note to self..I'd like some more HUE tights.

Saturday, December 01, 2012

Cabling at the hem

I've reached the cable portion for the Water and Stone Cardi. Actually, the modified length I'm making. The pattern makes this cardi mid-thigh. I just don't wear the longer sweaters year round; I'm sure I'll get more use out of a cardi which is shorter, so I've knitted to 15" from the armhole (instead of going onto 18"), and I think I may only knit an inch or two of ribbing, instead of 4".

I'm thinking of knitting a twisted rib though to make it more decorative than a regular rib.

Monday, November 19, 2012

At the waist


BWM in Natural Light front


BWM in Natural Light Back

I just re-looked at the pattern on this, and the length is 41" which is a wee bit long - not sure I'll knit down that far - I'd be sitting on it.

Yarn is really lovely, and I'm enjoying the cables.

Did I forget to post a pic of my finished Color Affection ?

Color Affection Length

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Lovely cables

I'm making progress on my cables, and really loving knitting with this yarn.
The fabric was too loose at the gauge of the pattern, so I went down to a US6, and I need to knit 2 more inches to the underarm, since I have more rows to reach the same distance.

Shoulder cable left side

Shoulder Cables pic2

Blue Water Mahogany Cable

My Eye of Newt Arrived - lovely and more pink than I'd expected:

VG Bugga Eye of Newt Closeup

and I finally seamed my sleeves:

Larch Sleeve cap

The weather's dipping below 50F these days, so I'm digging out my knitted garments. Need to finish adding buttons to my Fall Forest Cardi. I found some lovely metal leaves last month, so these will go well together.

Also, destashing again so I'll put up a page when I've updated all the pics, and adjusted prices for local pickup.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Oooh Oooh - A Bit of Excitement

(a) I'm finished my Modern Neopolitan Color Affliction aka Color Affection Shawl (#10)

It blocked out huge..now waiting for good light to take a picture.

(b) Swatching for Water and Stone - a lovely cabled cardi, with VG Bugga in Dyeing Poison Frog - a beautiful blend of blues and mahogany.

VG Bugga Dyeing Poison Frog

(c) I submitted this photo for  the 5th Monday Customer Photo Inspiration Contest  at Verdant Gryphon - the theme was samhain / Hallowe'en / Celebration of Death Festivities from other cultures - and it won with the most votes (found on google images):

Gryphon translated it into these lovelies:
Eidos: The Morrigan
Bugga: Eye of Newt

  Traveller: Samhain and Mondegreen: Ooh, ooh, windshield woman:

More info here on their blog from October 25, 2012

It's like a love child between Peacock Butterfly and Crimson Dropwing:


All snail photos copyright by Verdant Gryphon.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Silky Leaves shawl/shrug?

Silky Leaves Shawl/Shrug from the front - with the coppery tones up.
Back of Shrug/Shawl
Silky Leaves Shawl with blue at neck edge.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

In progress pics

Codex Leaves Shawl
The codex leaves had started like this:

Codex Leaves Closeup

and ended up in strips. The placement of the strips was puzzling because I'd planned to alternate variegated and solid strips. Unfortunately, it ended up looking like a mish mash of clashing colours overall. So, I experimented with pairing the strips -

Codex Leaves layout 1

Codex Leaves layout 2

Pairing them seemed to be more pleasing.

Codex Leaves layout 3

When I crocheted them together though, they became a little more 3-D, and the crochet being not as flexible meant the strips were not as long. Still need to take a finished pic. Now that the weather's changed, I hope it to be soon, but I don't know when.

Color Affection

Almost done - I'm on the last 2" band, and then, the stretchy bind-off.
The colours are - Chocolate Crinkle (a dark brown, not as dark as I'd hoped), Bisque (brown-based creme, and En Vogue, a dark red-pink):

Plucky Knitter MCN

It's too big to take a great pic on my little table - so here's the top for the colour-

Color Affection top

and the bottom where I've added the En Vogue pink-red colorway

Color Affection Section 3

Color Affection

None of the colours look as dark as they are here, but it's a very pleasing combination in person. Still can't believe that I enjoyed this since it was all garter. Great for knitting in groups and while watching shows.

Monday, October 08, 2012

Silky Leaves done - #9

I finished off crocheting the codex leaf strips together, and put it around my shoulders - it looks awesome..just weaving in ends now, and hope to find my camera so I can get some pics up.

I ended up crocheting every other stitch, or every three stitches to allow for some flexibility of the leaf length; otherwise, it's just too tight, with the silk in addition to the crocheted stitches not providing much give.

Color affliction is still going along - I have about 30 stitches left for short rows - which is about 10 stripes or so...I think this is what I counted last. Because it's short rows and you only pick up 3 stitches each times, it starts to drag..I'm hoping it'll add another 4" in length though, otherwise this will be a pretty skinny long scarf...winding around my head for days.

Hope everyone is having a Happy Thanksgiving.

Thursday, October 04, 2012

Good progress: Color Affliction

I'm making good progress on my Color Affliction these days..although I'm doing short rows and adding just 3 stitches each time. I can see why this part drags on. Still have about 3 or 4 repeats of 8 rows, so another chunk. I'm loving the dark pink, chocolate brown and creme colorway combo.

hopefully, pics this weekend.

Friday, September 21, 2012

The Knitting Police

          Friend: There's no such thing as the knitting police, why are you worried..?
          Me: well, I said, not exactly worried, but..
                  I do have a person who comments when I cast on another project
          Friend: OMG, You do have a knitting police!

The thing is that I really have an ongoing list of projects that I work on. I've always been more of a process knitter than a project knitter.

When I started, I knitted projects to learn the techniques. My first cardigan used 5 or 6 - black yarn, kntting intarsia, first collar, first pockets, first button band, knit made by knitting across the fronts - I used 2 yarns, the body was on a US 7, and the band was on a US 5. I charted it because the teacher whose class I was in, insisted that I knit the cardigan from the bottom up!  I also started with a raglan style cardigan, and ended up with a set-in sleeve.

From there, I went to fairisle fingerless gloves of my own pattern, a dress using different weights and types of yarns than the pattern, and mega-cabled socks. I discovered that I love doing cables, but they don't provide much warmth in sweaters. I explored felting, knitting with beads, weaving, and yarn dyeing. I knit baby gifts and gave them away, and learned to knit only for people who could really appreciate the time and effort taken.

Since I work full-time, I just don't have the same time to devote that others might have, my attention wanders easily..unless I focus. It's worse in a group, I really need something mindless at knit night - which means boring stockinette or garter. I find that after interacting with people all day at work, I just don't have much focus or attention.

Last year, I tried to do 12in2012, a knitting challenge which is its own reward to knit 12 projects in a year. Most people churn out 12 small projects. I knit a lot of scarves last year, and cowls. Just one sweater last year.

I do have quite a few sweaters waiting for me to come back to them..hence the large amount of UFOs - unfinished objects (for any of you non knitters). Here's what I have on the needles as WIPs (knitters love acronyms - works in progress) right now.

Can you spot the new project I've just started ?

I've joined the bandwagon of almost 6,000 projects for The Color Affection by Veera Valimaki (sorry missing accents). I'd "invested" in the yarn around Christmas time, and ended up making up my own kit with three colors - a dark brown, middle brownish creme, and a bright pink. I'm through the first section of garter, and onto the striping. Garter. It's all garter - very boring garter, but perfect if your brain has poofed after a week of meetings, discussions, and computer stuff.

So, a short revisit of the rest of my projects on the needles, shall we ?

Next up - Pearl Shawlette - Status - Not Started.  Percent complete: %.  Planned for Ravelympics  Ravellenics but did not have time to start. Hope to start one day.

Silky Leaves Shawl - knitting in the lovely codex - Status - knit 2 strips each of 10 leaves in Murder calls Dr. Hanley (navy), Arkady (brown with blue),Delirium (multi-fall colorway), Petit Prince (light pastel blue), and 1 strip in Spielen am Morgengrauen (gold/blue). Realized I want to both show off the details of the leaves AND have a cohesive shawl knit in this stunning bfl-silk blend. Might be challenging to do both. Need focus to figure out the order of the strips for the shawl

Hush Hoodie - knit in the lovely Skein Fingering merino cashmere in Hush, a light lovely brown.  I'd been away from this for so long that I'm not sure what I have left to do. I think I finally seamed the shoulders, and have to figure out if I want to rip back to the bodice, since I misplaced 6 stitches from one side of the front to the other, or just pick up and knit down on the sleeves. I satisfied, but dissatisfied on this one. I don't need practice on re-doing, and since I don't wear much of what I produce, I'm not sure it's worth the effort to frog and re-do. Percent complete - 70%

Love that Dahlia - still loving the yarn; finally ripped back to the first chart which required attention I didn't have at the time I knit it. Now, my house is quiet and I think I could actually get back to this again, and the colorway is so lovely.

Caribbean Watershed - started January 2011. Was ready to finish off the one side when I realized I have to re-frog, fix and re-do this one. This has been cursed from the start, and really, I just love the yarn and could knit and finish my own creation and call it a customized pattern. I'm sure even the designer will not want to lay claim to the pattern when this is done..if ever.

Kelmscott - also stalled from 2011 or was it 2010 ? I have to go back and check. I fastidiously knit this at knit night until I took a wayward turn at the fronts for neck decrease. No good instructions in this area, and I think I may have to figure out how to reduce the lace and still make it look good on the front - maybe stockinette ? Such a lovely hand, and found the bag this is in, so I want to restart this soon - hah! take that knitting police - it's in my mind..albeit low on the list.

Janel's Class sample sock - from Sock summit 2011 -last summer. such a cute little fairisle sock; not much effort to finish. not sure where i've put it now and even if the needles are still with the project - could be a hibernating project soon.

Regal Silk - had started and knit the hem and it was BY-oo-ti-full! but realized when my mom said "That looks too big on you!" that when I could pull it up over myself over jeans, that she was right - too big. so, sadly need to rip back and figure out if I can make a size that is even on the pattern. It's an olgajazzy pattern - she makes wonderful designs but never seems to have the patterns test knit so patterns have to be heavily modified or analyzed prior to knitting. the regal silk is taunting me it's so gorgeous! Soon my lovely soon - but probably not if kelmscott is ahead of you.

BP Breakwater - have the yarn don't have the inclination. started but the yarn traveller has a bit of a squeak even though it's only wool. weird, i know. somewhere, it's in a project bag, but hasn't had much attention -so status - not really started. ok, not started, and i'm ok with that.

Summery lacewing -  gorgeous yarn I picked, and I finally have a 3rd skein, so enough yarn now to make this for sure. Have to recalc the waist decreases/increases as I've started and frogged this several times as the yarn is different than what the pattern calls for, so i'm essentially designing my own sweater here. I probably should just pick a pattern that actually fits me and use the same lace, but I didn't think to do that at the beginning      (oh man!). why didn't I think out loud earlier ?!
... so, it's been waiting for me to calc,
and to take it off the needles to measure and make sure it isn't too big, as it's bottom up
      (deja vu on the regal silk, for those of you who have read this far!)

Blue - yep still waiting for me to have enough to attention to sleeve the seams that have been pinned now for over a month..or was it two?! can't wait to wear this. Everything has been blocked separately.

So, this I say to the knitting police if you're reading..it's true! the word is out -
I've cast on another project. and it's an easy peasy one, which doesn't require much attention, I hope.
and that's good for me - because it's going to take all the attention that I have right now in my leisure time, to complete it.

now, go bug someone else for a change.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

the magical earburn

Today I asked our webadmin at work if he could set up an earburn.
..an earburn to a department head to come read a specific page on our sharepoint site...to respond to a question posed there by our staff.

He kept saying "A what ?! - What's that?!".

ok. seriously, how come noone else knows what that is!

Even after I enlightened him, when I tried to explain, the art of earburning -  I forgot it was a rav-term -being able to call out a particular userid publically, but privately within a closed environment.

Sadly, he could only offer an "alert" - an e-mail with the pasted link to potentially prod the person to go look at the page. It's been a week since the person first posted in the public forum. Seems like a lifetime in an internet world when people connect with each other in a matter of minutes, or less. archaic, really. sad that replying to acknowledge that the person's question was received and is being investigated is put aside to craft the perfect response.

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Good things about today

  • Gorgeous sunny day
  • Afternoon flew by
  • Halfway through seven busy days
  • Found what I was looking for at Home Depot
  • yummy leftovers
  • They set up a new fountain at Uptown with water and lights; it is tiled and very beautiful and today lots of kids were running through and getting wet. Also, the grass is still green, and the park benches are still there.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

It's been a long week...and it's only Tuesday

Somehow it feels like a verrry long week - and it's only Tuesday. Monday felt like it should have been Thursday at the very least.

A lot of people told me today how tired they were, and felt. It was an overcast day, and somehow the weather seemed to suck the life out of people, quite literally. It was a day of baby steps - 2 steps forward, three steps back..it seemed, all day.

Hopefully, tomorrow will be better and sunnier. Maybe it was just because last week I had a lot going on - the exciting visit at the office, relatives from out of town, and met a friend at Spinnaker's for a yummy meal...and then, I got a lot of stuff done at home on the weekend.

..could be the lull before the storm ?

Friday, August 24, 2012

A brush with greatness

Tuesday, my boss at work brought her daughter in to meet us.

Her name is Gillian Carleton and she and her teammates won Bronze at the London Olympics for the Track Cycling. She brought in her bicycle and bronze medal to show.

Gillian talked to us about her bicycle, being at the Olympics, her ride, and the race itself.
On the left with her bicycle (weighs 16lbs, or 14.5 with her race wheels on); and on the right with her Mom (Nancy Carleton), also a triathalon champion.

With her medal-which is surprisingly heavy. 
According to Wikipedia, the bronze medal is made up of 97 percent copper, 2.5 percent zinc and 0.5 percent tin. Info about the London medals on wikipedia here.

I also finished up by Seastorm of Petals (#8 of 12) - i think I could have made the shawl smaller to be more of a tight cowl; I think it will be more like a staged shawl.

Yarn is Sweet Fiber Yarns in Heirloom (70% Silk; 30% Cashmere Top). It is so soft; such a lovely hand. The colorway is seastorm. Shown below the cowl blocking, and the original skein (shown right):

Heirloom Seastorm Zuzus PetalsSweet Fiber Heirloom Seastorm

and I'm continuing with leaves - this is Strip 3 in Arkady - coppery-brown and blues:

Arkady Codex Leaves Closeup

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Scalene Shawl Complete


Scalene Folded

Scalene Red


Scalene Red with Black

Interesting technique - this shawl has 2 keyholes, to allow you to tuck in the ends, and make a neckerchief.

To allow more versatility, I modified by making the first keyhole red, and the second keyhole black.
I also modified Section 4 of the pattern to end with a larger stripe of black. This makes the shawl more striking next to my face, but less symmetrical.

I was surprised at my commitment to complete the shawl even though it's garter. A very boring knit, but I like the result. Also, I my shawl is rounder and larger than most people's as I inadvertently increased on the middle band (section 2) on both ends, so I increased at a faster rate  - I ended up with 437 stitches before the Jenny’s Surprisingly Stretchy Bind-off. I was supposed to have 302 stitches total. ha! yes, as you know, I cannot follow a pattern.

As for my other project, I decided with less than 2 days left to the Ravellenic timeframe, I wasn't going to start another project and be frustrated so I decided not to start the other planned project - the Strands of Pearl shawl, that will have to be for another day.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012


I cast-on Scalene last Friday, a garter shawl. I know, I know, I'm not really into garter, but it seems to be knitting up fairly fast, and I hope to finish it and perhaps another shawl in the 2-week timeframe.


The colors I'm using are SG Rhinocerous Beetle which is a black, and the January Nudibranch which is a Rusty-red color. The contrast is striking and so far it's a very pleasing knit.

SG Nudibranch January 

These leaves are lovely to knit, but currently on hold.
The project doesn't meet the requirements for wips-wrestling which is the normal event I enter.
Projects had to have not been worked on since mid May to qualify for wips-wrestling, so this will have to go on hold until I'm through the Ravellenic period.

Codex Leaves Closeup

Codex Leaves pic 1

black friday

I've updated the sale page with some key sales for Black Friday. I'm not doing a lot of yarn buying these days, so these are the on...