Friday, April 27, 2007

So much easier to Knit (Spider Queen 2nd repeat)

Ok, so I snuck in a picture of spinning. But I'm spinning laceweight so I figured it was still "Ok" for the blog. Just a short post to show progress on spinning laceweight merino from Lisa Sousa in "Petroglyph"colorway. I only have 4 ounces of the stuff so I plan to ply with BFL in the same colorway. The Shetland Tea Shawl is taking shape. This is made out of yarn that I spun after not spinning for a long long time. It's not the best or the most even yarn I've ever made but it will make a nice rustic shawl and I like the color changes in this circular shawl. Depending on how much yarn I have left, I may put in another lace pattern in the end before attaching the edging. Spider Queen is knitting up nicely and I tried to get a close-up shot that shows some of the color variation but I'm not sure if you can see it well or not. It's been so stress-free to knit that I'm afraid I have not worked on the WRS at all (still on row 17 of border) but I will work on it during the weekend. Other than Laritza, and Sharon Miller, has anyone else finished this shawl out of the 350 patterns that were sold? I actually don't know. I imagaine missalicefaye will be next to finish of the people I know. I found another person who is close to finishing the border too. "Retirement Knitting Time" is on row 58 of the border. Check her blog out! It's really hot for a change out here so I've been at Home Depot shopping for gardening supplies. Happy Friday!

Sunday, April 22, 2007

"Simple" Lace Relief Knitting (The Spider Queen Shawl)

Now that the Flower Basket Shawl is done, I needed another "simple" project I could rotate with Wedding Ring Shawl (I'm on row 17 of the endless border). I am knitting again on Peacock Feathers after neglecting it for months and months. I guess my snit over having to pick back is over. And I'm knitting on the Shetland Tea Shawl and on Boundary Waters as well but I needed one more. I like to have five or six projects going so I always have something at different levels to knit. I don't know about everyone else, but when I don't have something to knit, I tend to read . Once I get on a reading jag, no knitting gets done. I do spin, but it's more like 30 minutes or so of spinning laceweight singles and that takes forever to get done so it hardly counts as an activity. I decided that I needed to use that 55/45 cashmere silk yarn I dyed rather than go for another gossamer weight shawl so I'm using it to knit The Spider Queen shawl by Hazel Carter. Knit on US 2 needles. I decided on the heavier weight yarn so that the shawl can take a little wear. If you check out fleegles blog you can see her "Spider King" shawl which her version of this shawl using a different border. It's really beautiful and she's decided on a finer yarn than what I'm using. For anyone considering a first effort into Shetland Lace types of knitting, this would not be a bad choice at all. You would have to have some experience with knitting other lace first but it's really a nice and easy knit so far. After looking at the changes that fleegle has made to her version of the shawl, I have started to wonder if I should also change mine. There is always something to be said for knitting a pattern as given. It's another "notch" in the knitting belt so to speak, but when I look at that border, I do admit it's a little odd. Oh well. I have time to consider it. I have Hazel Carters book on Shetland Lace Knitting From Charts and maybe I can do something a little different using that. Hope everyone's knitting is going well !

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Flower Basket Shawl Blocked (Is it worth making a shawl blocking frame?)

The Flower Basket Shawl is now blocked and wrapped in acid free tissue paper until needed. As you can see. It's pretty to look at but best worn at an angle to the body so that the point does not end up in an unfortunate location (as it does in the photo on me). Golly I need to dye my hair something fierce! It just so happens that the new Knit Picks catalogue came today and has the theme of "Lace". In addition to talking about lace knitting charts, dyeing etc. they also have several PDF instructions. One for making a shawl frame and the other for instructions on various methods of blocking . Check it out! Still knitting the Wedding Ring Shawl border. Not enough to really post yet. I found a dropped stitch so I just picked it up with spare yarn and did the fast and dirty fix. No picking back this time. I'd rather eat dirt than pick back over a thousand stitches for a row. I don't get as nice a stitch definition as missalicefaye since the yarn is so darned hairy. Still, it's pretty. Not perfect, but my niece Jessie won't care. It's really the Heere Be Dragone Shawl she wants but I don't know if that will be next or not. Maybe another simple lace to replace FBS. Time to swatch!

Monday, April 16, 2007

Flower Basket Shawl (In Koigu)

Finished another one of the easier shawls. Flower Basket Shawl in Koigu, knit on US 5 needles. Fun to knit and relaxing after knitting on the Wedding Ring Shawl. Very little progress on that front. However, if you want a visual feast, go look at the pictures on missalicefaye's site. The work is phenomenal! Her border came out just beautiful. Makes me want to sit and knit some more. Good Knitting!

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Easter Holiday Stitch & Bitch (The Family that Knits together...)

On Saturday my sister and I got together with our brother, Herman, our sister-in-law, Melinda, their children Shelby and Jessie as well as Melinda's sisters Millie and Marlene. We brought the kids their Easter Baskets and spent the day shopping, watching the traditional Easter TV offerings including The Ten Commandments, and knitting. Every last one of the adult females brought knitting with them. It was our own informal Stitch and Bitch. In fact, it was during one Easter Weekend not long ago that my sister and I taught Melinda to knit. This is why we know there are no knitting stores open on Easter Sunday. We used chopsticks and it worked out fine. See above, the Pirate hats that my sister-in-law has been knitting. The hat is a pattern from Knitty and the skull and cross-bones is an image from another Internet pattern. She knit the black and red hat for the young son of a friend of hers. He's in the hospital going through chemo and rehab at the moment and loves his pirate hat. He also asked for a hat with the logo for the San Francisco Giants. He wants to be able to wear it when he's well enough to go to watch the team play again. Knitting does have it's plus side! The Pink and Black Pirate Hat is one for a niece who saw the original and wanted one. I have been slowly knitting the WRS but already have spotted an error. With so many stitches in each row, it will be another Homer Simpson Fix but I don't care at this point. I'm knitting the Shetland Tea Shawl and the Flower Basket Shawls for relief knitting. It's nice to see the Madeira pattern actually take shape for a change now that I have the corrected pattern.
For those of you who have bought the book "Victorian Lace Today", you may want to check out the corrections for this book. My sister-in-law and I check periodically because new corrections appear to get added. Don't be like me and ignore the fact that not all patterns are perfect when printed. You will save yourselves a lot of grief.Happy Holiday for all those who are celebrating and Good Knitting~

Monday, April 02, 2007

Thousands of Stitches (The Wedding Ring Shawl Border)

It's slow going to knit the border so the pictures are not very inspired. However, I thought I just had to show that I'm actually knitting . I'm only managing a row or two every other night between work, reading and other activity's including a few rows on other shawls. I'm going slow so I don't have to pick back too much. I'll try to make more progress before the next post. I also took time this weekend to dye some cashmere laceweight yarn I purchased on E-Bay at one of my favorite shops, ColourMartUk. I tried to dye it black but I misread the amount needed to and ended up with uneven black/grey/dirty white yarn. It wasn't very expensive so I decided to over-dye it with Violet. It looks much nicer this way. Good Knitting!