Wednesday, December 31, 2008

2008 FO's

I can't believe that 2008 is almost over. There are so many things that I wanted to knit and many more that I started but didn't get finished. Here is a look back at what I did finish.

In 2009 I'm going to focus on organization. I would love to redo my pantry and get some new closet and garage organizers. I also have some knitting items that I'm getting ready to cast on.

Shalom Cardigan - I'm going to swatch today. This one should be a fast knit.

February Lady sweater - Body is done but the sleeves seem a little too big. I think I may decrease some stitches on the sleeves.

New Years Day Socks - (Raverlry link) I can't start these until midnight tonight. I'm in a KAL and those are the rules.

I hope every one has a Happy New Year!!!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Blue mood

I seem to be drawn to the color blue these days. I'm still working on my February Lady Sweater but I couldn't get a good picture of the true color. The swatch below of the Knit Picks Wool of the Andes Kettle Dyed in Jay Kettle isn't accurate.

The color is actually a bit darker. It's more of a navy color. I also did a bit of shopping at Webs. I bought some Malabrigo Chunky, in the color Paris Night, to make the Shalom Cardigan. I found this finished sweater on Ravelry (link) and just had to make it. I think I'm going to make mine with long sleeves also because I'm a freeze baby. Here is what the Malabrigo Chunky looks like.

I can't wait to cast on for the cardigan. Should be a quick knit because it calls for size 10.5 needles. I also bought some Classic Elite Waterlily in Wedgewood.

I'm thinking that I may use this to make another February Lady Sweater for my grandmother. She keeps asking me to make her a cardigan in blue. I think she will really like this color. Her birthday is in February. I think if I cast on now I can get it done by then.

I love the variegation in the waterlily. I might have to order some more for myself. It's getting late and I have to get up early for work tomorrow. All this Christmas wrapping, shopping and baking is kicking me in the butt. I'm on vacation beginning Christmas Eve through Jan 5. I can't wait!!!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

December already???

I can't believe that it's December already. Christmas will be here and gone soon. I finally put most of my Christmas decorations up. I still have a few Christmas lights to hang up in my windows. I use to be so good about decorating the day after Thanksgiving. I love the way everything looks once it's up. I just hate to have to take it down. According to my grandmother everything has to be down before January 1st. She always says you can't bring in the new year with last year's decorations or it's bad luck. Not sure if it's true or not but I know that I don't want any bad luck following me around. I'm klutzy enough, I don't need to walk into any more chairs and stub my toe or fall down or up the stairs. Yes it is possible to fall up the stairs.

I finally decided what I'm going to do about the February Lady Sweater that I was working on. My dilemma was that I started to make the sweater using Dream in Color in the November Muse colorway. Unfortunately I ran out so I picked up another two hanks and was all set to start knitting until I put the new hanks up to my half completed sweater. Not even close. My sweater looks reddish brown and the hanks are brown with some black and gray. I'm not going to give up looking for some matching hanks. I am however going to start a new sweater using the Knit Picks Wool of the Andes Kettle Dyed yarn in the colorway Jay Kettle. The color is beautiful. I ordered the Soot Kettle, Jay Kettle, Bordeaux Kettle, Ivy Kettle and Auburn Kettle. I couldn't resist, it was all so tempting.

No yarn pics today since it's dark out already. So, I will leave you with some pictures I took for a photography class I signed up for. I'm learning all about exposure.

I love this one because you can see the snow that's on the end of his nose and whiskers.

He is my only willing subject. Everyone else complains that they don't want their picture taken. A couple treats and he'll pose for any picture as long as you're okay with a little drool in the picture. LOL!!! Those of you that have Labs know what I mean.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Tutorial #1: Seaming & attaching handles

I have received quite a few questions regarding the best way to finish the Christine bag (ravelry link). So I thought the easiest way to explain would be to do a series of tutorials. This is the first and it will cover seaming and attaching the handles.

Seaming Sides

1- Metal yarn needle
2- Coordinating yarn approximately 24 inches long
1- scissors
(Optional) - Pins to hold your bag together as you seam.

1.) Lay your bag out with the cast on and bind off rows together.

2.) Turn your bag so the top of the bag is facing you.

3.) Before you begin seaming it is important to understand the difference between the outside stitches and the inside stitches. (See the image below).

4.) To begin seaming you will insert your needle & yarn into the first outside stitch on the left side of your bag. Be sure to leave a tail about 6 inches long to be secured later.

5.) Next you will insert your needle in the first outside stitch on the right side of your bag.

6.) Back to the left side, insert your needle in the next inside stitch. (Refer to image in step 3 if needed to determine proper placement).

7.) Insert your needle on the next inside stitch on the right side of the bag. (See image above)

8.) You will repeat steps 4 - 7 working your way down the bag until all your stitches have been seamed up. Your bag should look like the image below.

9.) Now that you are done seaming up the side it is time to hide your ends. Insert your needle between the last two stitches you seamed up and pull your yarn through to the inside of your bag.

10.) Secure your ends by working back and forth through the side seam. You may even tie a knot if you want. You won't see it once the bag has been lined. Do the same to secure the tail that you left in step 4. Trim ends if needed.

11.) Repeat steps 2 - 10, to seam up the other side of your bag.

Attaching Handles

1- pair purse handles - I purchased my wooden handles from Jo-Ann fabrics for about $7.00.
1- metal yarn needle (I have broken several plastic needles)
1- scissors
2- Coordinating yarn approximately 115 inches or a little over 3 yards.

Please note: You will skip the first 5 stitches (P3, K2) and the last 5 stitches (K2, P3). If you attach the handle to these stitches you will not be able to open your bag enough to get your items in and out. Below is an image of the bag with the handles already attached so you can see what I mean.

1.) Inset your needle in top of the appropriate stitch. Be sure to leave a length of yarn about 6 inches long to secure while you attach your handles. If you used Brown Sheep Burly Spun be careful not to pull too hard. Burly Spun is not plyed and will pull apart if you use too much tension.

2.) Wrap yarn around handle and insert from back to front in next stitch. Be sure to wrap yarn around the yarn tail that you left. This will eliminate the need to secure the end later. Below is an image of the back view of the handle.

3.) Continue attaching the handle until all but the last 5 stitches have been attached.

6.) Once you have completed attaching the handle you will need to secure your ends. Turn your bag so the wrong side of the handle is facing you. Insert needle into top of stitch closest to the handle. Be sure to pull your yarn tight.

7.) You are now going to feed your needle back through the wrapped stitches on your handle.

8.) Repeat until you have worked your way through all the wrapped stitches.

9.) Secure your yarn as you did in step 6 and hide your ends.

10.) Repeat steps 1 - 9 to attach 2nd handle.

I will be posting a tutorial for lining your bag in the next couple of days. Stay tuned.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Turkey Day

I hope that everyone has a safe and wonderful holiday!!!!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Yarn, yarn and more yarn

Chicken soup and Thera-Flu is about all I've been doing for the past couple of days. I came down with a chest cold and I feel like *&%$#. Not much knitting, but I have been searching for the perfect sock pattern to knit up my new Red Rocks sock yarn.

I bought this over on Mary-Kay's blog. I think she still has some left if you're interested. I couldn't resist this color, it's called 'It's a Go'. I can't wait to see how this knits up. I haven't made myself socks in a long time. Maybe that's because I usually get second sock syndrome. I prefer double points to knitting two socks at a time but I may need to reconsider that. I have too many single socks knit waiting for their partners.

I'm about half done with my February Lady Sweater. I bought another skein of the Dream in Color. I can't believe that they don't have a dye lot. Check out the difference in these two skeins. They are both November Muse.

Even if I alternate skeins I'm afraid you're really going to be able to see the color difference. The one on the right looks red and the one on the left is reddish brown with some black. Not sure what I'm going to do. I ordered this on-line and I can't remember where I got it. I could rip out what I have and buy two more skeins at my LYS. I guess I'll be putting this to the side while I decide what to do.

I also got some Malabrigo Silky Merino from my LYS, River Color Studio. They have a great selection of yarn. I managed to stay away from the Koigu. They have practically every color you could want. Well, off to watch How the Grinch Stole Christmas. Isn't it a bit early for Christmas cartoons? It is snowing outside.

Sunday, November 2, 2008


It's finally here, my newest design Eleonora. This classy but simple shrug is perfect with jeans or over your favorite little black dress. You can knit this up in either DK or fingering weight yarn. Cuff and body ribbing are done in a simple lace repeat. Shrug is knit sideways starting at one cuff and finishing at the other.

DK version shown above & below. Size small shown knit with cotton fleece.

DK - 20 sts and 26 rows = 4 inches
Fingering - 28 sts and 32 rows =4 inches

Garment sizes: XXS, XS, S, M, L, 1X, 2X, 3X

DK - US size 5 needles
Yarn - Brown Sheep cotton fleece 4 (4, 4, 5, 5, 5, 6, 6) skeins

Fingering - US size 2 needles & US size 4 needles
Yarn - Bristol Yarn Gallery Buckingham 5 (6, 6, 7, 8, 9, 9, 10) hanks

tapestry needle

stitch markers and split stitch markers

Fingering weight version shown above & below. Size small shown knit with Bristol Yarn - Buckingham.

The Buckingham yarn is really soft and luxurious. It has great drape and is very affordable.


Click the buy now button to purchase and download a pdf version of the pattern. Please note if you are using your checking account to make your purchase you will receive the pattern once the payment has been processed. If you don't have a paypal account that's okay you can make a purchase without an account by using a major credit card. If you are a Ravelry user you can also purchase it through my pattern store.

Every attempt has been made to produce a high quality pattern, free of errors. Pattern includes both charts and written instructions. Enjoy!!!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Long time no see

So it has been awhile since I posted last. Things have been a bit crazy. My grandma was in and out of the hospital over a three week period. They kept sending her home and telling her she had inflamed ribs. Turned out she experienced some very severe side effects due to some meds she was on. She is finally on the mend so things are getting back to normal.

On the knitting front I'm almost done with Porom. No pictures to post. I got home late and it was already dark out. I hate to take pictures with my flash. Since I don't have any knitting to share instead I will share one of my favorite recipes.

Turkey Meatloaf

2 packages of ground turkey breast
3/4 cup instant oatmeal
2 eggs
1 cup frozen chopped spinach

For the herbs I go to Trader Joes. They have basil and cilantro, in the freezer section, that are frozen into little cubes. You could definitely use fresh basil and cilantro if you prefer. For me the frozen cubes are more convenient. If I buy fresh basil I end up having to through some of it out because I can't use it up before it goes bad.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Thaw and drain the spinach. In a large bowl combine all your ingredients. I mix everything together will my hands (cleand hands LOL!!!) and place in a loaf pan. Cook at 375 for 50 - 60 minutes or until it's no longer pink in the center.

I love how moist and yummy the meatloaf comes out. It's great warm or as a cold meatloaf sandwich. I'm lucky to have leftovers for the next day. My husband practically eats half the meatloaf himself.

For a little twist you could also add some salsa to change it up a bit.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

For me.......

It has been a very busy two weeks. I am hoping things will slow down so I can get back to knitting and blog reading. I did find the time to do some shopping with my Birthday money. I have always wanted a dress form to use when sewing or when I am designing a pattern. I splurged and bought the lady valet dress form. Isn't she pretty!!!

She is in route all the way from the UK. I couldn't find any US stores that carried this type of dress form. The stand is wood, which is what I wanted. The best part is the form is adjustable so I can alter it to my exact measurement. It should be arriving this week.

On the knitting front I am still working on my February Lady sweater and I have two new projects that I think I may be knitting for Christmas gifts.

Brooklyntweed just came out with two beautiful hat patterns. The first is a cable hat called Habitat. I have a couple of men that I think will love this hat. The second is for the ladies and is called Porom. I have yarn in my stash for both hats but I may need to purchase some more.

I love quick knits for Christmas gifts. Can you believe that there is only 95 days, 12 hours, 52 minutes and 47 seconds left til Christmas. But who is counting. LOL !!!!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

And the winners are.....

Thank you to everyone that joined the blogiversary contest. I really enjoyed reading your blogs and getting to know more about each one of you. I know you are waiting to find out who won the goodies so the winners are:

Lornas's Lace Shepherd Worsted goes to Judy

Regia Canadian Color sock yarn goes to Erin

Noro Kureyon goes to Evergreen Knits

Send me your info ladies so I can get these in the mail to you.


Thursday, September 11, 2008

Blogiversary Contest

It's been a year since I started blogging. I have met so many wonderful people through my blog and made some great friends. I wanted to do some type of contest but have been too busy to think of anything creative. So leave a comment from now until Wednesday September 17th and you will be entered to win 1 of 3 prizes.

First is Lorna's Lace Shepherd Worsted in colorway Embers (2 skeins - 225 yards each).

Second is Regia Canadian Color. This is one of my favorite self striping sock yarns. I don't think you can get this anymore. When I found it I bought 10 skeins. You know I love sock yarn.

Last is 3 skeins of Noro Kureyon color 139. The colors are purple, pink, teal, blue, green and rust.

Goodluck and thanks for reading!!!!!