Sunday, June 12, 2011

The socks were made for walking

And that's just what they'll do.

In orange shoes of course.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011


Sometimes you finish a piece and you think, crap, that sucks. It's ugly and I'll never wear it and what a waste of all that precious knitting time.

And other times you finish something and think, wow. That's awesome. It turned out way better than I anticipated.

Any guesses on which one this is?

Sunday, May 29, 2011

A Lot of Things Can Happen in a Year

In this case, I knit a shawl.

I started this project last June. I had my eye on the Icarus pattern since it was published. It is so lovely. Simple lines with a lacy edging. Big enough to wrap around yourself and stay on your shoulders.
I did one less repeat of the body than was recommended as I wasn't sure I'd have enough yarn. Even so, this shawl, from tip to tip, is longer than a queen sized bed.

Now. Where will I wear it?

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Being Crafty

I don't consider myself a crafty person. Yes, I knit but other than that, I think I'm pretty un-crafty. I'm no Martha Stewart. I don't have a craft room. I don't sit and make paper lanterns with my children. When I need cards, I buy them (or get the kids to fold up paper). I just knit.

However, I did go to a craft show today. I had heard there was yarn and where there's yarn, I'm not far behind. And I learned a number of things.

Lesson 1: There are a hell of a lot of quilters in the world
Every 2nd booth was a quilters booth, or fabric, or sewing machines. And there were quilted bags and jackets and people everywhere. Quilting seems to be where it's at (how is it that even at a craft show I'm not in the cool crowd?)

Lesson 2: Whenever you find cute buttons, buy them.
Lesson 3: I'm not meant to be a crafter.
Yes - I made this lovely jewelled book mark. It wasn't that hard really. But, it was too fiddly and there were too many pieces involved and there were so many tools, needle-nose this, and wire cutter that. They roped me in because I learned Viking knitting. Which was interesting, but likely won't be used 'round these parts again. Into the Christmas gift pile you go....

Lesson 4: Stainless steel in yarn is pretty darned cool
Saw a scarf knit in this that I must replicate. Must.

Lesson 5: You're NOT an idiot, even if after months of owning a spinning wheel you still can't use it.
At least, that's what the ladies of the Spinning Guild assured me. So, I'm supposed to go on a Saturday, Istvan (that's what I call my wheel) in hand, and learn from some greats. And I hear there's cake.

So, it was a good day out. I even brought along J., virtually. It was almost as good as having her with me. Ok, maybe that's stretching it....

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

So Pretty

I have wanted to knit Rhombus socks since I saw the first previews of Knit Sock Love.

They came up for May in the Knit Sock Love knita long on Ravelry. I am delighted with these socks.
They are knit in Wollmeise Twin yarn which I think really shows off the pattern well. Lots of twisted stitches and tricky cables to keep you paying attention.
Aren't they lovely? My usual photographer was out of town today, so P1 (who turned 5 in April) stood in. Didn't she do a great job? I think the Dude has been replaced as my photographer of choice. P1 is excited to help and doesn't complain nearly as much.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Four times a charm?

Neck edging attempt #1: Couldn't get over my head.

Neck edging attempt #2: Went up 3 needle sizes, couldn't get over my head.

Neck edging attempt #3: Same needle size as attempt #2 and did loose bind-off. Way too loose and flopping. No structure to it.

Neck edging attempt #4: (to be attempted at some point in the next 24hours) - Same needle size as attempt #2. Same bind-off as #3, but will tighten up each stitch.

If that doesn't work, I'll just hit the scotch.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

More Socks

I need to branch out. Its seems like all I've been knitting lately is socks. But WHAT socks. If I had to only knit socks, I would pick Cookie A's patterns.

Here is the second pair for April.

They're Mona in Dream in Colour Smooshy. I didn't love this pattern the first time I saw it. Having knit them, I do like them more. They're not my favourite socks ever but they were fun to knit, easy to memorize and a pleasant addition to my sock stock pile. The Smooshy yarn didn't really impress me. I loved the colours but the yarn itself was very thick and thin in spots. Maybe this is not the norm. (Let me know what your experiences are with this yarn. I would try it again if I knew that there were knitters out there
who love it.)

May brings Rhombus, which looks like a floral lattice pattern to me. I'm using Wollmeise Twin yarn in a bold turquoise colour.

With all this sock knitting going on, is anyone going to Sock Summit? What classes are you interested in? Maybe I'll see you there...

Friday, April 29, 2011

Wedded Bliss

We enjoyed a night at home, champagne in had, toasting the lovely royal couple. The hype is a bit much I think, but I did get swept up in the excitement.

Highlights for me were her sister's bridesmaid dress (loved it) and William looking like he was holding back a giggle.

As a knitter though, when I saw the pic of Kate in her party gown, I wondered immediately if the cardigan was hand knit. Can you imagine that job? Knitting an angora cardigan for the new Princess? No pressure.

And although I'm the only girl in my house, my boys let me be a girly girl and gush over the fashions and the hats. My youngest decided that I am the Queen of the house - Dad is the King, and the boys are the dragons.

I'm good with that.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Spring has Finally Sprung!!!

I live in the north, so winter does not come as a surprise to me. I actually like living in a place that has all four seasons. Each is distinct and has it's charms.

This year, winter came early and over stayed its welcome. We had piles of snow that were taller than me. (Clever readers might note that I am not very tall. This may be true, but a pile of anything that is as tall as me is too much in my opinion.) The weather would warm up a bit and then it would snow again. I started to think that the winter was getting to me. And hearing all about a certain someone's times at the beach or in a winery or barbequing wasn't helping the situation at all.

So I cast on some bright socks to brighten my mood. I was originally going to knit these socks in a deep purple but thankfully I realized that I was going to need all the help I could get seeing the pattern in these intricate socks. They were time consuming and fiddly but I really love them.

And by the time I finished these sunny socks, most of the snow had melted and the birds have started singing. Spring. Just what I was hoping for.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Not to be outdone

A shawl.

Stay tuned for some blindingly orange socks.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

A day of firsts

First day I've ever tackled my taxes on my own (and lived to tell).

First day I've worn a shawl to the beach.

First day of the year that I truly felt chilled.

First day I didn't let the boys go in the water because it was too cold.

First day of my new niece's life. Wish I could meet her soon and wrap her up in this shawl....I'm willing to share it.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

A Follow Up Report

Acclaimed knitter J continues knitting orange socks. The first one is finished and is indeed meant for J.

Witnesses stated they are planning to have J's eyesight checked after concerns that the colour of these socks might be blinding.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011


Today, my pretty little Princess, you turn five. Sometimes I catch you in the corner of my eye and I am amazed at how tall you've grown. Your hands are solid in mine.

Sometimes, you are so independent. You want to do things your way. You are stubborn and strong. I try to tell myself that that is the kind of woman I would like you to be when I'm not frustrated with your obstinence.

Sometimes you are so kind and nurturing. You are worried about teaching your sister all the things she needs to know as if you were the only one who could. You look after your friends at school and make sure no one is excluded.

You surprise me with the words you use and things you know. You light up when you smile.

Keeping growing and learning, my Pretty Little Lady. But not too fast.

Happy Birthday.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Mocking me

Here it sits. Laughing at me. Saying "you're almost done, you're almost done" but with an evil giggle through out.

It knows although I'm on the last instruction in the pattern, I'm far from being done. It knows that "4 inches of border" sounds completely easy and innocuous, but really it means 4 inches of never ending garter stitch.

And then it laughs again.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Late Breaking News

There is some concern at the home of world renown knitter, J. People close to J are concerned about her mental health as her behaviour has become erratic.

"She's always been an avid knitter. That isn't anything new" stated the Dude, J's loving husband. "But lately, she's been knitting a lot of socks."

Ravelry project listing confirm the extensive collection
of Cookie A socks being produced by the fibre artist. The latest pair have experts baffled as their are intended for J herself....

...and are being knit in orange.

Updates as they become available.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Just when I go and fall in love with a pattern..

I've been knitting stripes. It is so much fun. Each stripeis slightly wider, slightly longer. I can't wait to finish each one to see how the whole piece will look.

And now I'm on the last stripe. It's almost done. I've been dreaming about new colour combinations with 2 or 3 or 4 or 6 colours. I'm wondering who I can knit another for.

And then Veera comes up with another version. It's hard to keep up.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Veera's Vision

If you don't know Veera - you should check her out. Seriously. Go right now and then come back. I can wait.

Veera is brilliant. Simple, beautiful well thought out patterns are putting it mildly. Every pattern she has, I could imagine myself wearing. Every one.

So as my first Veera pattern, I decided to try out her Stripe Study Shawl. Along with J. Freakin' brilliant. I don't want to put it down because I keep wondering how wide the next stripe will be or how much more asymmetrical it will look. It allows you to knit with gorgeous yarn in amazing colours and that's the primary focus of the work.

I figure a mix of Wollmeise and Koigu is perfect for this study of stripes.

Monday, March 28, 2011


As you may have heard, March is for Monkeys and far be it from me to miss a trend.
This last pair is knit in Socks that Rock mediumweight on 2.5 mm DPNs. It's been a while since I knit with variegated yarn and the pooling can be a surprise. On one of the socks, the colours made candystripes around the leg. On the other, the colours make columns of colour.

I'm tempted to cast on another pair. (I might be addicted.) These will be a birthday present for a friend.

Now I've cast on for another trendy knit, the Stripe Study Shawl.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

More Monkey March

Doesn't it seem like things come in waves? Weddings, new houses, babies.

Here is a baby that we met in August. She's grown a lot since then and she has her Uncle, the Dude, wrapped around her little finger. See?
Some other friends are having a baby next month so, of course, I had to knit something.

And since March is for Monkeys, I thought why not?

Who you lookin' at?

Monday, March 21, 2011

Source of Angst

Some days I have many sources of angst - kids, husband, work, dirty house, traffic.

Other days there is only one major source.

We need a day apart and then we'll try again.

I think I can, I think I can, I think I can.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

March is for Monkeys

One of the first sock patterns I tried to knit was Monkeys. I made myself a pair in shades of brown. They are my most worn hand knit socks and they have nearly worn through. When the Knit.Sock.Love knitalong picked Monkeys for March, I knew I had to make myself another pair of brown monkeys.
Here they are. These are knit in Wollmeise twin yarn in Feldmaus. I love the chocolatey tones in this yarn. I still love the pattern. I think I have some new favourite socks.

Next up, more Monkeys, but maybe not what you'd expect.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

There's something I've been keeping from you...

It's not that I'm ashamed of it. I still knit. I knit every day. Sometimes, though, I need a little something different.

Something that moves quickly. Something that allows me to use up my stash and make gifts in less time.
My name is J. And I'm a (beginner) weaver.

There is something very satisfying about creating a fabric by passing yarn back and forth. Colours emerge in different ways when you're knitting and the fabric is different. I find myself looking at the way the yarn goes over and under.
So far, I've only made scarves with simple fringed hems. One day, I'll try weaving in the ends or sewing the long strip of fabric into a bag or weaving a hand towel. For now, I will enjoy tossing this scarf over my shoulders and feel good about learning a new skill.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

To you, with love

You aren't even born yet, and you are loved. You are loved by a mass of people who are anticipating your imminent arrival and love you for who you are and who you will become. We love you already, in spite of your parents (who are a little weird, but you'll figure that out sooner or later). We already say your name when we say prayers before bed. At least your 4 year old cousin does, every night.

We love you even though we won't be there when you arrive. We will send you this blankie full of love and kisses and hugs and slobbers. And we will meet you as soon as we can....

(A blankie, for our newest niece/nephew/cousin - due to arrive at the beginning of April)

Monday, March 7, 2011

One-a-baby, Two-a-baby

One-a-baby (for a baby girl due in April)

Two-a-baby (for my new niece or nephew due in April)

Three-a-baby, Four. (I don't think there's any more babies to knit there?)

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Unlimited Potential

I've been winding a lot of yarn lately. Sometimes I can get the whole skein caked up without a hitch. Sometimes I fight and fight with tangles and snarls and knots.

In the end, I have this lovely cake of yarn. It could be anything: a hat, mittens, socks, a shawl. It's like this cylinder of wool holds all of this potential energy and it's just waiting to meet some needles so it can start becoming whatever it was meant to be.

This cake is going to become a pair of Thelonius socks. I queued this pattern when it came out years ago. I have always meant to get around to it, maybe for myself or for a friend's birthday, but it just never happened. Now I have beautiful yarn and a knit a long to spur me on to greatness. Or at least warm feet.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

The Things You Do

When you live here and everyone else lives way over there, there are crazy things you do to keep in touch.

You text your morning routine to your best friend (with pictoral evidence) to give them an idea of what it looks like.

You prepare for Christmas and birthdays months in advance to allow for mail time.

You learn how to convert time to multiple time zones within a second.

You spend your Saturday and Sunday mornings with the computer on waiting for the Skype phone to ring.

You accept ridiculously generous gifts so that you can do an across the ocean KAL together. Ridiculously generous gifts that make your week.

You make every effort possible to keep them all close even when they are not.

And it's worth it. Every minute spent is so worth it.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Worth the Wait

Sometimes things take longer than you think they will.

These socks took a couple of weeks to knit, partly because they have a lot going on and partly because I had a lot going on.

I really like how they turned out. Marilinda's for the Knit.Sock.Love knitalong on Ravelry.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Coffee anyone?

(that's my handspun.....)

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

I Spy


Crocheted Hearts!

I can't tell you how delighted I was to spy this on a dreary winter morning.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

A Sock and a Princess

P2 would like to show you what her Momma has been up to.
Momma has knit a sock. Just one. It took a while. The other sock has been cast on, so there will be two eventually. It's tough to knit when little Princesses want to play.

There's a fancy pattern on this sock. See?
Now, let's go have a snack.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentines Day!

I always feel it's important to accessorize.