With Bated Breath…

Still waiting on my ESK yarns to get fully engaged with my Yarnathon 2017 knitting – the shipment is right on track, I’m just REALLY impatient to get started! All groups and their members are off to a great start although at the moment, the Peppermint Ponies are bringing up the rear. I expect to singlehandedly boost our stats with my birthday order next week! Well, maybe boost a little… I am still on the never-ending yarn diet of Doom.

As of Saturday AM:

Yarnathon 2017 ~ Teams and standings on 7 Jan '17

Yarnathon 2017 ~ Teams and standings on 7 Jan ’17

What I have done is plan as many non-buying point boosters as I can; these being mostly achievement badges for various skills, spills and thrills in the knit / crochet world. What I am buying for is a toned down version of the Persian Dreams afghan and a crochet version of our team mascot who I’ve dubbed “PepPonia“. So far, I’m favouring one of Heidi’s African Flower motif designs, Fatty Lumpkin, worked in our team colours on Cascade’s 220 Superwash base.

On the WIP front, my Side Effect has it’s first sleeve and the second should be underway later today. Contrary to my lifelong modus operandi, I’m focused on finishing this before going back to other WIP’s. No big thing but working this way as opposed to having six or seven UFO’s strewn over the living and dining room is so much more Zen 🙂

And now Saturday chores and stuff calls ~ loudly, obnoxiously ~ beginning with shovelling out after last Thursday’s very rude dumping of 20cm or so of snow and then freezing rain. Clearly, Mother Nature is not a knitter – I have to keep these muscles protected for warmer, fuzzier activities! Cleaning then organizing an under sink recycling pull out bin will be much easier now that Handy Andy very kindly repaired my ancient sink basket and trap (thank you !) and once the vacuuming is done, I’ll be tucked in with a cuppa, a book and SE’s sleeve 🙂

Here’s hoping your chores are light, and that there’s time for a few stitches where you are. Passez un bon-weekend!

A Little This A Little That

The snow came to stay but I’m sufficiently dug out and knitting on a sunny Sunday afternoon. Making good progress with ‘Ariel’ aka: Absinthe Mermaid, the Manos Fino is a treat to work with and a perfect sub for Tosh Merino Light incidentally.

Body almost ready to separate for back and front.

Body almost ready to separate for back and front.

I dug out an old skein of Ruby Sapphire sock yarn and am playing with the bones of a new design. RS yarns were an Indie company that I loved. Generous skeins and very limited colours, many customised with their fans names – yup, there is a ‘Karin’ colourway 🙂 The one that I’m working with is ‘Heather’, a lovely, springtime mix with touches of teal and sand that keep it from being too saccharine. ‘Biaisée’ is the working name for this scarf.

The diagonal line and sunlight. How Vermeer!

The diagonal line and sunlight. How Vermeer!

I have a lot of a skein leftover from my ‘Metallicus‘ tee and have been churning out these awesome little soap savers (or cell phone cases said my Mum when I gave her one Friday night). They take minutes to hook up and I have some pretty stone beads to add as tie stops. I think I’m up to six of them now with another on the hook – they’re a great little ‘green’ item and mine are also vegan friendly 🙂

Perfect for travel soaps or Wild Woolly's sample sizes.

Perfect for travel soaps or Wild Woolly’s sample sizes.

I’ve been stocking my Etsy shop with more cross stitch, hardanger and vintage kitsch; also some cute and out-of-print children’s patterns. Dinosaurs never go out of style!

Matching Dino pullover and squishy knit dino buddy.

Matching Dino pullover and squishy knit dino buddy.

I hope everyone had a great weekend – ciao for now!

The Countdown Is On

The Needler’s Retreat 2015 is coming up quickly. Taking place at the beautiful Glen House Inn in Gananoque again, this one will be really exciting for me. I’m preparing for my first Vending experience, a little nervous but glad it’ll take happen in a place and with folks I’ve known for a few years.

I’ve spent the morning doing Graphic Design work for my advert sheets and presentation binder and updating the files for my business cards. For now I’m just creating labels to stick on the old ones and bring them into this decade. I’m happy too, to have connected with a tech editor for KeiB Designs. I think it’ll add a professional touch and I know as a knitter, I appreciate that feature.

I’ve been working like a stevedore on the “Knitting / Guest” room and am really happy with the results so far. I’m still inundated with yarn (please visit my stash for sale on Ravelry and adopt some) but as of today, I have almost all of it in the one room. I did get some shelves (bamboo – recyclable and biodegradable – yay!) for my own closet and for the front hall. A little more work to do there as I’m still slowly working my way through old clothing and aiming for one more big donation to Diabetes before the end of the year. I put together coffee tables for the living room and finally replaced my 1960’s folding card table that was curb-dived about 10 years ago and has been serving as my kitchen table. Next up, I’m going to tackle what will be my office / sewing and needle work room. All in good time, I don’t procrastinate so much as to lose my title but I’m finding I have to make a mess in order to clean up a mess. It is so worth it though, as I’m getting better at getting rid of the things that make my life “heavy”.

I’m still working on the BW wrap and the Falling Leaves cowl but did get a wee bit bored and so took a break to whip up Anna Hrachovec’s “Boo Bat“. My daughter is crazy for bats and we kept a bat house at the old home. I love this cute little ami and can see a few more for her (I can’t tease her about being too old for bats. I still will buy anything Hello Kitty!) I am seeing trying my hand at some different techniques to create my own pattern but we’ll see how that goes. I know the weeks between now and Retreat weekend starting November 6th, will fly by.

This is a bigger post as I’m currently participating in a poetry writing challenge called OctPoWriMo and I suspect it’ll take a bite out of my blogging time for the next month. If you’re interested in poetry and other writing, I blog that at my other WordPress home: The Eclectic Poet. I’ll be here whenever I can though – you’ve been warned! 🙂

Here’s a Pictorial of the house and knit happenings: (You can hover over each photo for a quick blurb or click the first one and it opens a larger, slideshow-type of view, where comments, etc. can be made)

Startitis Strikes Again

At least this Startitis involves using stash!

A long time ago, I made a sweater using MissionFalls 1824 wool. I didn’t know it at the time, I was coming back to really active knitting after a long stretch of sewing and seamstressing but, this was a highly sought after wool. I kept the bits and bobs, which were significant because the colours were so pretty.

During a Ravelry cleanup yesterday (had to pare down my queue – it was pushing 500 items!) I came across a great little pattern for a mitred blanket that is stash friendly and so here is the start of my “Mission Possible Blanket”.

Mission Possible Blanket

Mission Possible Blanket

Between this, and the other WIP’s that I have lurking about, I should be well occupied until Clue Three of the Peter Pan Shawl Mystery KAL arrives on Friday.

More Wonderful Knitted Movie Characters

I love these types of knits – I’m sure it’s noticeable that I’m in touch with my inner geek. These LOTR characters by Denise Salway, take up to a month to create each. I’m hoping that patterns for these, the Dr. Who characters and *dare I hope* The Thunderbirds, will be available.

This would be my “Grandma Knitting” of choice… along with skully diaper covers and flame-motif blankets! Kidding 🙂 I’d make those now too, LOL

Click the photo to read the full article and there are more pictures to admire too.

Amazing!

Amazing!

Spooky Knit Geekery

The Samhain, All Hallows’ Eve, Día de los Muertos, Halloween geekery; is posted on So Many Vices, So Little Time today. Come one over… If you dare!

Jean Greenhowe Ghosties

Jean Greenhowe Ghosties

Click on the ghosties to go to Jean’s page – there is a link for a free download to make these guys.

Finished Projects Update

There’s nothing like a long weekend to get some extra knitting and crochet finished up. Despite being stuffed with turkey and the trimmings on Sunday, I managed to have a very productive Monday.

Son’s afghan is finally finished and ready for gifting at Christmas and the prototype for my next scarf pattern is done. I’ve got the notes for a slightly different finish and for the different yardages of suggested yarns and now it’s on to the pattern writing. I’m hoping the New Year will bring some new and improved software for writing and charting, it’s always nice to be able to offer options.

A Saturday visit to my LYS and my BFF – The Evil Yarn Temptress – resulted in one pair of very sexy Knitter’s Pride Karbonz and some Noro Kureyon Sock falling into my basket. Because… of course I need more sock yarn… Ahem. This will be my personal project for the upcoming Needler’s Retreat. Eighteen more sleeps!

I am excited to try the Karbonz. Reviews have been good and they feel good in the hands. Proof is in the stitching though, so I’m looking through patterns this afternoon. I may work up my own “Inuksuk Socks“, it’s a subtle pattern, not boring and won’t fight with all the “noroness” of Noro.

A wee gallery of the weekend fibre goodness:

IMG_3294

The Bishop’s Sleeves – Prototype knit

IMG_3292

Noro Kureyon Sock

Kureyon Sock 252 and Knitter's Pride Karbonz

Kureyon Sock 252 and Knitter’s Pride Karbonz

Bee Man's afghan

Bee Man’s afghan

 

Mystery Solved

Have just finished up the i-cord cast off. I divided the number of stitches by three and used each of my colours. I’m very happy with it. The result is very subtle and a little unexpected.

These are unofficial photos as it’s just the knitting that’s done. I’ve yet to tuck the ends and maybe do a very light blocking. The body and drape of the Primo combined with garter stitch makes it look like blocking will be optional.

Westknits Mystery Shawl KAL 2013, sans toes.

Westknits Mystery Shawl KAL 2013 1

Westknits Mystery Shawl KAL 2013 1

Westknits Mystery Shawl KAL 2013 2 – sans toes

 

Westknits Mystery Shawl KAL 2013 - unblocked detail

Westknits Mystery Shawl KAL 2013 – unblocked detail

Anymore will need to wait for tomorrow evening. My fingers and eyes need a wee rest after all that i-cord and tomorrow is another work day.

Goodnight all 🙂

Needler’s Retreat 2013

Yesterday began the four week countdown to Needler’s Retreat 2013. This annual retreat is put on by my friend Debbie Marshall of Sheeps Ahoy.

I am so excited to be going this year after having missed the 2012 edition. The teachers this year are Anna Dalvi, my friend Natalie Servant and Mary Pat McDonald. No homework this year kids! Good thing as I am just wrapping up the last band of my boy’s ripple afghan and biting my nails waiting for the last clue in Stephen West’s MKAL.

The Retreat is held at The Glen House in Gananoque – gateway to The Thousand Islands – and it has a very interesting history. The entire atmosphere is so fun and relaxing, the company always fine and I cannot wait.

My best friend, Francine of Fancy That – shawl pins and jewellery, is my bunk mate and as we are both a little bitten by the shutter bug, there should be some wonderful pictures of The Glen House and grounds and of course the shenanigans – or very serious fibre study – that will be going on.

I was able to catch a sale on a wonderful Atenti overnight bag:

Keeping the "punk" in Punk Rock Pointe Shoes... :)

Keeping the “punk” in Punk Rock Pointe Shoes… 🙂

… and I hope it gets here quick, I’m ready to start packing now!

In other news, if anyone has good vibes to spare, I’ve just applied for a new job in my division and I could use all the positive thoughts I can get. My life has changed dramatically in the last year and this could be a very positive one.

Oh and… (it just gets more funny with each repeat) just TWO more sleeps until Clue Four in Westknits Mystery Shawl KAL 2013: Colour Craving is released!

Cheers all – the week is halfway through