Thursday, December 15, 2011

There is a plan in the works....

I am following the lead of another blogger whose knitting, writing and talent I admire. Pink Lemon Twist pulls stash yarn for 12 projects to complete each year. This was her first and now she is planning for 2012. Her knitted items are gorgeous and her blog is fun to read. Tune in at

However, I have so many UFOs, that instead of starting something NEW each month in 2012, I'm going to turn a UFO into an FO. I came home from work with the full intention of finding 12 skeins of yarn -- that part wasn't difficult -- and lining them up for 12 new projects. When I looked at my UFO pile I decided I needed to start completing items. I will knit new items too but it will feel so good to pull one out of the UFO drawer each month and finish it. Some months maybe I will do several and get this project completed before the end of 2021. My rules!

Some only need a part of a sock finished and I will have a pair, one shawlette is barely started and I want to finish it to wear to Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival in May (you know if I do the temps will hit 100 that day!), one is a cabled buttoned cowl,  there is another cowl, more socks, etc. Just look at the photos. I am putting them in order of the months I have chosen to knit them.

Oh no, they won't be all I knit because some won't take long to finish. I will do other things in-between. This is a good way to line up what needs to be completed, and do it in a timely manner. Knitting should be fun and I think this is a fun plan! Thank you Pink Lemon Twist for giving me the inspiration.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Knitting for Golden Retriever Rescue

Golden Retriever Rescue of Central PA, Inc. ... which I have has the pleasure of being affiliated with for 12+ years since we opened ... is doing two holiday craft bazaars in December. We will be at the inaugural Millheim Holiday Show on Friday, Dec. 2 from 4 to 8 p.m. and on Saturday, Dec. 3 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Also you will be able to find us on Saturday, Dec. 10 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the ...Old Gregg School in Spring Mills. We really need to raise money right now as we have 13 Goldens in rescue...9 of them are puppies. In addition to our usual Golden Retriever related items we will have homemade dog treats, project bags for knitters and crocheters (thanks Donna!) and hand knitted items. If anyone wants to knit or crochet something for us to sell, we would be so happy to accept it. Donations can be mailed to Golden Retriever Rescue of Central PA, Inc., PO Box 397, Centre Hall, PA 16828. Thank you in advance.
Here are photos of two pair of mitts I have completed thus far. I think a hatlike scarf is next to match the purple/black/raspberry/teal mitts. Not enough yarn for one to match the others.

Next mitts on the needles will be plain red and will sport a cable on the back. Off to knit!

Monday, November 14, 2011

This Is Very Cute

A friend sent this to me. I think it is from Vogue. I felt the need to share.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Cabled Cowl Stalled

The lovely cabled cowl from the last post has been stalled because of a knitting mistake. I can live with the mistake for myself but not for something that was to be a gift. I will finish it for myself later this year after holiday knitting is completed. I like the pattern and wanted one so this will work nicely.

Off to Ravelry I went. I found a free pattern and started it from other yarn. I have 3 to make and complicated cables just were not working at this time. The new one is very different but nice. I think it will work well in the worsted weight yarn. First one is on the needles. This one has to work because I don't have enough spare time for fiddling around changing patterns.

Photos soon. Not enough to show yet.

Friday, October 14, 2011

It's Cowl Time

I have been furiously knitting cowls since the Camp Loopy Challenge ended. The blue and gray one was just completed this week. It is a wrap around (twice around the neck) design and could be pulledover the face a bit as protection from harsh weather. This one is knitting in Lorna's Laces DK and is soft and will be so warm.

The pattern is "Purl Ridge Scarf" by Stephen West who is one of my favorite designers. I was going to knit more this season but this one took what seemed like forever, and I need to get these done.

So, I switched to Rainier Cabled Cowl by Nona Davenport. It is a lovely pattern. I still find cables a bit fiddly, but much easier when using worsted weight yarn instead of fingering weight. I have two more of these to knit. Also have a stealth project under way and can't reveal until after Christmas gift giving with a friend. This is knitting in yarn from Universal Yarn Company. I have really come to like their selection, quality and great price points.

I have a shawl in worsted weight to finish for myself and I might work on it a bit tonight instead of the cowl. Will see what I have time for after dinner. These cool nights and somewhat chilly days make me glad I have hand knitted wool socks to wear.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Camp Loopy Project Three

Camp is over for this year!

Project Three was completed tonight with about two hours to spare...and 10 yards of yarn remaining. This is Boneyard Shawlette in the Mineshaft colorway from Lorna's Laces. Content is 75% alpaca and 25% silk -- absolutely lucious. I am thrilled with the results although my nerves are shot from trying to knit 800 yards of yarn (actually this is about 815 yards) in a month. Most months would be OK...not this past one. Lots of work and other commitments. But I'm done and have completed the  task.  I kept my eye on the prize from The Loopy Ewe...a skein of the coveted Wollmeise yarn.

This is a shawl pattern that doesn't need to be blocked. I actually would like it a tad bigger so might gently block just to stretch it a bit. Jury out on that plan right now.

I promise to blog more frequently since this huge project is done. I have some smaller projects planned so will post in progress photos, etc. Just didn't have time with this shawl. Enjoy...I know I will!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Camp Loopy Project Two

My Single Cabled Socks (as I named them) are done and the photo uploaded to The Loopy Ewe site. Just under the wire. Knitting time has been sparse because of the intense heat and humidity and some volunteer activities that are keeping me really busy. All good though.

I used a new cast-on (to me) that I found on another pattern. Cast on more stitches than I use for the socks and then do a k2tog to give them more stretch. I quickly tried these on and think the cuff will fit better than others. The sock itself is the basic sock pattern with a simple heel flap and turned heel. I knit with Claudia's Handpaints in colorway "Secrets" and am pleased with the results. Very nice yarn that I would highly recomment. My socks are knitted on 56 stitches and the cable is a pattern repeat of 8 stitches that I found in a stitch guide.

Knitting a cable was the basic rule for this project, and since I don't care for cables or cable knitting (it isn't hard but I find it too fiddly) I followed the rules while making the project as simple as possible for myself.

The third and final camp project begins tomorrow and must be finished by September 15. I am using Lorna's Laces "Honor" in the colorway Mineshaft. The requirement for this project is to use 800 yards of yarn knitted singlely to put everyone on the same page. I love Stephen West's "Boneyard" shawl so am making myself one from this lovely DK weight yarn. Will be nice to knit on size 8s again. Hope I get a bit more time because 800 yards is a lot for me to knit in one month.

If participants finish all three projects -- I have two done -- and have purchased their yarn from The Loopy Ewe during a specific timeframe prior to the project start they get rewarded. A discount for the project yarn, frequent buyer double credits, and this fall will get a gift of a skein of the hard-to-purchase Wollmeise yarn and a special pattern. I am determined to finish and am keeping my eye on the prize.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Camp Loopy Project One

Simple Things Shawlette is one of my very favorite patterns. I have knit it several times for myself and am making one as a Christmas gift. An easy to remember pattern and quite portable.

A few weeks ago Sheri at The Loopy Ewe posted on her blog about a "contest" she was starting for summer ... Camp Loopy. It involves knitting 3 projects -- all specified by Sheri -- over the course of the summer -- from June 15 to September 15. The first leg of the trek was June 15 to July 15. We were to knit something to keep us warm around the campfire -- a shawl, scarf, neckwarmer, etc. All yarn must be purchased from The Loopy Ewe to participate and those who buy it during a specified time period get a discount. Sounded good to me!

I had been wanting to knit a shawlette in orange and blue (I hate orange for myself!) to wear to football games at the University of Virginia and basketball games at Bucknell University. Very convenient of them to use the same team colors. One rule of the first camp event was that each project had to be knitted from two colors of yarn -- so mine is from Lorna's Laces team color line in a varigated orange and navy and solid navy. I love LL's yarn and am particularly fond of this sport weight. It is going to be my go-to yarn for many projects.

My project was finished last week and I finally got time to block it tonight. It is uploaded to the Loopy Ewe site. I am pleased with it. I don't look at it as a spectacular project but it is well knit, I think. Go to the Loopy Ewe site and check out the posted photos. There are some absolutely gorgeous projects to view.

I am now finishing another narrow shawlette in worsted weight Lorna's Laces in two colors. Hope to be done by the weekend and will post. Next will be Daybreak in eggplant and primavera colorways from Malabrigo. Am loving this more and more....

Friday, June 24, 2011

I'm Speechless

Presents Filled the Box

Absolutely Amazing!

I made my daily after work trek to the Post Office for the mail. Ah-Ha...a yellow card in the box telling me to pick up a package. I didn't order anything...hummm....

Postmaster gives me a sizeable square box from Maureen in Alaksa. Loopy Ewe swap partner sent me a present! Exactly what I needed after a very stressful week at work and at home.

Let the Goldens out into the yard before opening the box. Much more pleasant to open without barks to remind me they are downstairs.

I was stunned...a box FULL of wrapped packages. Colorful summer colors of wrapping paper and some beautiful blue with a knitted cable design on it. The packages seemed endless. I began opening them and was like a kid in a candy store. I just couldn't stop! I absolutely LOVE LOVE LOVE everything. All tailored for me! Sounds selfish, I know but today I just needed something for me. And Maureen provided it in style!

Where do I begin...well, let's go in order of how I unwrapped the amazing stash of presents. First is a really cute pair of pink sunglasses to keep the sun out of my eyes while I knit; next came a drink mix for raspberry treat; followed appropriated by a double-walled large glass with its own straw (I love these glasses!) decorated in cute flowers in lavender, raspberry and lime green; somehow Maureen managed to get a package of dark chocolate from Alaska to PA in summer without it melting (very cool!); next I opened a cylindrical package which turned out to be Trader Joe's French Roast coffee beans which I have been wanting forever and have no Trader Joe's within hundreds of miles of me. Now think coffee beans and are they connected? The next package contained a fabulous Bodum French Press coffee maker in Purple! I've never seen on in Purple. It is awesome and as I write this I AM drinking my first cup of coffee made in it. I haven't opened Trader Joe's yet because I wanted to use some beans I already had ground. I can't wait and I bet Trader Joe's will be next!

There also were two wonderful patterns in the box. One for Fetchings which I adore and did not have a pair of and the other for a unique sculptured neck piece called "Sev[en] Circle." Was also thrilled and decided I definitely had to make both...hummm...maybe a set for fall.

I saved the 3 squishy packages for last...OH MY GOSH! The first contained a skein of Tosh worsted in Iris colorway (again purple!); the second was Sev[en] Circle in gorgeous shades of deep eggplants/purples/a little deep raspberry thrown in. Maureen made me one of these amazing neck pieces. OK, one final package. Whew! FETCHINGS!!!!! to match Sev[en] Circle....unbelievable. Seriously, her kindness and creativity brought me to tears. I think I needed that stress reliever and her package was a fabulous way to achieve it.

I hope Maureen's swap partner is as good to her as she was to me. I don't know how I'm ever going to say thank you to her. Maureen...thank you for all of the work and thought you put into the package you sent to me. You went way above and beyond and I so appreciate your kindness.

Sending hugs of thanks from PA to you in Alaska...Kim

Thursday, June 09, 2011

Who's Car is This?

Received my new license plate in yesterday's mail. Woo-Hoo! Love it and I need to get back to sock knitting. Been sidetracked by shawlettes.

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Summer Projects

I finished the summer shawlette a couple of weeks ago but have been so busy I haven't had time to post. It is a pretty assortment of colors -- raspberry/pink, denim blue, gold, olive. I really like the completed shawlette. The yarn is Ty-Dy and is a worsted weight. It is soft and felt nice on the hands for knitting. I used two skeins and have two leftover -- they will either go on my Ravelry site for sale or I might knit a fall neckwarmer. The more I ponder their fate, I am leaning toward selling them. I could have made the shawlette a bit larger but frankly got tired of the endlessly long rows of stitches. Plus it is more decorative than for warmth...afterall the yarn is cotton. I am shorter and the finished length is perfect for me, I think.

The sock is in an almost complete state right now. This photo too is several weeks old. I got side-tracked on knitting and haven't picked up needles in a week. The sock yarn has a strange feel to it and I will be interested to see what I think when I wear the pair. It is a cotton/nylon blend with some elastic, so unlike other summer socks yarns, this pair should not fall down around my ankles.

Off to Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival this weekend. Will post lots of photos upon my return.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Magazine Review

Bought a copy of the Spring "knitscene" which is published by Interweave Knits. I like this quarterly magazine, in general, and really like the new issue in particular. Lots of cute cardigans to knit and some great articles. My favorite is by designer Stephen West who writes about garter stitch -- which I am addicted to. Also, there is a terrific and easy garter stitch shawl pattern in the magazine. This one is a keeper for me.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Something For Me

Aren't these colors yummy? Raspeberry, denim blue, sage green, and gold. Wow! Late last summer I purchased a number of skeins of Ty-Dy cotton yarn for a shawlette Boneyard Shawl by a young designer Stephen West. I started it on size 8 needles, got distracted and then Fall arrived and it was time for knitting with lucious woolen yarns.

I have to admit...I DO NOT like cotten yarns for knitting. Interesting because those 3 hats I just knit are all from cotton yarns and so is this shawlette. I am loving this project because the yarn has a wonderful feel on the hands and knits up nicely. Of course, I don't think a knitter can miss when using a design by Stephen. He is so talented.

I have quite a ways to go and of course get distracted by new patterns. I will finish this in due time. Watch for progress.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Coco's Beret

Beret is finished. Yarn is loosely woven so I think this hat will stretch. My great-niece Coco might not be able to wear it until next Spring. But I think it is very cute.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Aren't These Cute?

Last night I finished the baby hats for Annie and Lily. Can't wait to send them to the 6-month-old twins in NJ this week.
Yarn is from Knit Picks and is called "Comfy Worsted." Machine wash/tumble dry...perfect for a busy working mom.

The tops on both is in the Honey Dew colorway. The main part of the rosey one is Peony and the main part of the yellow one is Creme Brulee. Their mommy dresses the girls in similar clothing but not identical colors, hence similar hats in different colors. Hope their mom and dad like the hats!

The beauty of rolled brim is that is they are a bit too long just roll them up a bit and wa-la, they fit.
NEXT: A beret for my great-niece.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Sockless in PA

For years socks have been my primary knitting passion. But, somehow, with the invention of shawlettes I have moved away from socks. Shawlettes are wonderful but often take a long time to knit...those rows of stitches are never-ending. I don't need a lot of yarn for my socks because I only wear a size 5 1/2 shoe, so being frugal I pick out sock yarn and knit the shawlettes because I use most if not all of a skein. Time for sock knitting reason to set back in!

I am vowing to get back to my sock knitting because:

a) I love handmade socks because they fit me

b) They are a much more portable project

c) Socks are a quick knit -- a sense of accomplishment

d) I have boxes of stashed sock yarn that needs to be used -- well, I am using it for shawlettes

e) Realistically, how many shawlettes can one person wear

f) I LOVE SOCKS! Wear them daily....

Photo is of a pair that has been in the works for some time. Sock one is done and sock two is well on its way. Love how they match. Goal is to finish shawlette this weekend and then this sock is next project, along with two summer baby hats which in DK weight yarn won't take of them in a week or so.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Major Progress on Shawlette

I am nearing the eyelet rows for the edging of Simple Things Shawlette. This is a delightfully easy pattern to knit and the results are really nice. I knit one in a sparkly handpainted wool in shades of raspberry and pinks for the holidays. Loved it!

Maryland Sheep & Wool is quickly approaching and I wanted to have a small handknit to wear to the show. If you have never been to a fiber festival it is well worth the trip just to see the handknits people are wearing. Generally fabulous.

Dug into the stash and pulled out a lovely ball of Sockotta fingering weight yarn. Sockotta is a nice blend -- 45% wool; 40% cotton; 15% nylon. Loved the shades of blue and decided it would look nice around the neck of a tee shirt. So, I started knitting. Only have 3 rows remaining on the stockinette section before I begin the 10-row repeats for the eyelets rows. The pattern calls for 2 rows of eyelets, but I know I have more yarn than called for in the pattern, so I'm planning to do 3 and maybe even 4 rows...will depend on amount of yarn in the skein and my desire to get finished.

Will post a completed photo when project is done, which I anticipate to be in another week. What's on your needles?

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Part Two -- Ravelry Valentine Exchange

Kandice received her package in today's mail and loved what I sent to her. Yeah!!!! I knit her Laura Chau's "Simple Yet Effective Shawl" which can be purchased for a few dollars. This can be knitted in many weights and a large variety of yarns. I chose Schaefer Anne's shade of purple in fingering weight. The shawlette I made for Kandice has 5 repeats each of the two sections -- one is stockinette and the other garter. I was going to do 6 of each but was running out of time and yarn. There are a lot of stitches in this shawl.
Photos show the finished shawl and a closeup of the pattern sections. I really, really love the shading in this yarn. Enjoy Kandice!

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Ravelry Valentine Exchange

Since November I have been participating in a Valentine's Day gift exchange on Ravelry. The Loopy Ewe group to be precise. Today I mailed my gift to Kandice in California. Once she receives her box later this week I will post a photo of what I knit for her. I really like it and hope she does, too. Kandice is now one of my blog readers, so I am not posting until I know she has opened the gift. I've been teasing her too long to spoil it now!

Last week my present from Janet arrived. Wow! Look at all the goodies in this photo. At right is a gorgeous lacey short scarf Janet knitted for me from Zauberball. Those colors are lucious and just perfect for my wardrobe. The scarf looks cute flipped over in a short tie and also with a shawl stick.
Janet also sent me a gorgeous skein of Sweet Georgia yarn in a beautiful raspberry-purple combination. There is plenty for a shawlette. But, I think I will knit lacy socks and use the leftover for fingerless mitts. Plenty for both in this large skein. The candy Janet sent me is gone, gone, gone ... and yes, I enjoyed every bite. Additionally, there is a cool box with a variety of cocoas and a recipe book. Going to dig into that this weekend. She sent an adorable card, too, which was a nice touch.
Swaps are fun. I love what I received. I hope Kandice feels the same when her box arrives in California.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

It's Baaacccckkkk!!

What is back you may ask..well my Knitting Mojo, that's what. And I am so glad. Now if I just had more time to knit. Sigh...

Right now I am on a deadline for a swap gift on Loopy Ewe Ravelry site. I am enjoying knitting for this young woman who lives in California. We have developed a terrific relationship via email and I know it will be one I will foster for years. I will be the recipient of a handknit gift from another Ravelry woman who is also a dear and I love emailing with her too. I think our friendship will be a good one, too.

I am about 85% finished with what I am knitting. I think my partner might read my blog so just to be careful and keep the surprise, I'm not mentioned what it is or showing a photo until after she receives it. The packages are to have arrived by Valentine's Day, so it won't be long until I can share photo. I love it and am really happy with the way it is turning out.

Once completed, I have a knitting list a mile long. When I need a break from this larger project, I am knitting two baby hats for my almost great-nieces. Annie and Lily were born at the end of August and are just adorable. The hats are alike but the colors are different. When I get a bit further with the first one I will post a photo.

I have several shawlettes I want to knit for myself, some socks, and I want to knit a worsted weight circular scarf that matches a hat I made for myself. Also have some other worsted twisted wool for some sort of cool scarf/hat for me. I'm tired of freezing at Penn State football games each winter.

I am trying my best to knit from stash this year. We will see how this progresses...

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

I Did Not Buy Yarn

I was only at the PA Farm Show briefly on Saturday morning and might go back again this Saturday. I didn't buy yarn and won't be buying any. First, I don't need yarn. Second and probably more key to me not adding to my stash was that I didn't see any yarn I liked. The PA Alpaca Breeders Association has a much smaller selection than last year. I saw only 4 skeins of fingering weight and the rest was worsted weight. It was pretty and I think commercially dyed. And it was expensive with low yardage. There were two other women with yarn. One had hand-dyed with a rough base and not very good dying. The other had all worsted weight and commercially processed and dyed yarns.

But, I did buy this little Yarn Angel. Isn't she sweet and she was only $15. I'm glad I nabbed her as she was the only one with a knitting basket.I now have to decide where to locate her.

Saw the baby pigs who were fighting to get fed by their mom. Oh the squealing could be heard for a long distance. They were so cute -- only 2 1/2 weeks old.
Of course my favorites were the alpacas from A Suri Farm which is owned by my friends Monica and Dennis. The cuties in these photos were born in May, 2010 so are still babies.