Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Lucky Me

I have been totally spoiled by my until-today-secret-pal! I got tools and a book for spinning, tools and a booklet for sock knitting, beads for decorating, some hand cream from her family's pharmacy and a gorgeous, soft beaded scarf to keep me warm while I launch into all my great projects! Each gift was individually wrapped! It was like Christmas all over again, only with better toys. This is going to be so much fun. Thank you Lisa. I really do enjoy a challenge. I can't wait to read her blog and see all the projects she's been telling me about. It's great to get gifts - but the best part is getting to know a fellow knitter and hearing about a different take on the craft. Lisa is a sock knitter and recently made a fabulous shawl. It can be viewed at

Sunday, January 28, 2007

So many projects so little time

I have been pondering lately why it seems I am unable to start one project and finish it before starting another. I think it's this: there are so many things I want to make that I keep starting them in hopes that starting them will create more time in which to finish them. It's like saying chocolate from friends has no calories. But the reality is that too much of it will make you fat and no matter how many projects I start there is a finite amount of time. heavy sigh.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Wind me up

My dh got me the best present for Christmas - a ball winder and swift. He sure knows how to take a hint. It's as great as I hoped. My kids think it's great fun too. First we started winding the skeins I had laying around. Then we started on the tangled up piles of left overs. After that, we started rewinding the hand wound balls just 'cause we could! It's a great motivation to organize the stash.

Bowl me over

These are for my Secret Pal to whom I am soon to reveal my identity (never mind that I already slipped up and sent her my name on an e-mail). The bowls are from the One Skein book. They are fun, quick and easy. They are a great "must finish a project" fix. These are made with Cascade 220 - the heathers. Very nice colors and the yarn felts like a dream.

Friday, January 19, 2007

So close, yet so far away

You know how when you look off at the distance at mountains they can seem so close, yet when you walk toward them you find they are really much, much further away? Does anyone else find that to be true with knitting? It seems like you are so close to the end...just a few more rows and you'll have the 5, 10, 25 inches that you need. Just five more minutes, maybe ten at the most. And yet, there you are hours later?

My husband says knitting time is like football time: two minutes to go could mean anything from ten more minutes to two more hours!

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Cast on and on and on

I learned to knit from a book. It showed how to do a knitted cast on. I didn't know there was any other way until I finally wandered into a class. The teacher mentioned there were dozens (?) of others but taught the knitted cast on. I was perfectly content with this tried and true until I came across a pattern that called for a long tailed cast on. Now, I'd seen the complicated looking pictures of it and heard about how hard it can be to get the tail the right length. I have enough challenges in my life already. But I'm not really one to step down from a challenge, especially in knitting.

I finally broke down, read the tutorial with needles and yarn in hand and I had a serious Green Eggs and Ham moment. I like it! I like it Sam I Am - and I will do it on a box, with a fox, wearing sox, knitting sox. It's a good thing I'm trying to knit, not write a children's book! But suffice it to say that this cast on is great! It's so easy, so quick and so pretty. And, the best part is that one row is knitted before you've even got started!

This is my first long tail cast on project.
It won't actually look like this because I'm going to frog and go in a different direction. But I don't mind. Why? Because I get to do the great cast on again. (It's moments like these that I think maybe I am a knitting freak).

Monday, January 15, 2007

Tote Much Fun

Just in case anyone hasn't heard, I'm announcing that the International Tote Exchange III is launching now. It's a great event that brings people from around the world together to talk about yarn, knitting and patterns. The rules are simple: You make a purse for someone and someone else makes a purse for you.

These are repeat photos from the last one. The best part was meeting some great people. A close second was getting a fabulous purse that draws complements whenever I use it, which is often (Thanks again Alison!). I also found the challenge of knitting for someone else to be interesting and fun. I worked with colors I wouldn't normally have chosen and I made a new pattern by combining the features of a couple others I liked.

If you're interested, the sign up can be found at:

Monday, January 08, 2007

Tag, I'm it

It's like freeze tag but in this game when you're tagged, you're supposed to name six weird things about yourself. I'm tickled that I got tagged by a bunch of my online friends, but I don't know anyone else to tag! Still, I'm happy to play along as best I can, so here's my list:
1. I don’t like to have lunch before I’ve had breakfast. If I didn’t get to eat breakfast, I’ll have breakfast foods for lunch.
2. I don’t like to lounge in my pjs, but I love to wear my fuzzy slippers.
3. I don’t like to serve food in the pots in which it was cooked, even though it makes for more dishes to do after.
4. Although I like organization, I can work, sew, cook, knit etc., in the midst of a mess, much to the amazement of my husband, who can’t.
5. I’m glad I have kids because it gives me an excuse to watch Sponge Bob Square Pants and a number of other shows adults wouldn’t normally view.
6. I have a very short attention span, which is why I’m a great journalist and really good at knitting anything that can be done in a week. That’s also why I haven’t written a novel or knitted an afghan.

Monday, January 01, 2007

A tip

It's great to be creative and add your own touch to a pattern. Just remember to write down your alterations - Particularly if you are making changes to something you need two of - like fingerless gloves.

Hopefully, I'll be able to figure out what changes I made by studying the first one - that is if the recipient (my 14yo) can find it!