Sunday, August 26, 2007

Susan was inspired by the Emily Ocker discussion and knit this tiny baby cap using the technique, then started the baby blanket using Woolbearers Kona in Colorway Baby's Garden. The mitered square blanket is a pattern by Cottage Creations called Rambling Rose, which you can buy in our online store!

Hannah finished this fabulous lace stole of Rowan Kidsilk Haze. The pattern is from Victorian Lace. Isn't it beautiful?

Kelly bought the yarn and knitted all of this while sitting in the store for an hour! It is a lace shawl done in Woolbearers mohair, colorway Early Frost.

Other 'in progress' works seen this weekend are a Pi Shawl knitted by Joanna in Woolbearers Fingering weight wool in colorway Herb Garden, a cardigan in a Rowan yarn knitted by Loren, several projects for grandchildren by their loving grandma's including a beautiful lace cap knit by Hinda for her granddaughter, not yet here! Lots of pregnant daughters and daughters in law out there.
UT's Gone, But Not Forgotten

Six weeks ago, I had a hysterectomy. Aside from a slightly thinner waistline and a hairier chin, I haven't really noticed feeling anything different with all of my innards gone. So much for all the hoopla. Someone asked if I was sad about not being able to have more youngest is 32 so I really didn't think along those terms!

At least the desire to knit, and the ability to read a pattern has returned. I've had so much anesthesia in the past 18 months, I doubt I would ever pass a drug test. It's truly amazing, the effect all of those drugs have on one's memory and concentration. I feel a little like a dud much of the time. Thank you to Myra for patience and filling in the gaps. I love my knitted uterus, by the way.

Lot's of you stopped by this weekend with finished projects and projects just begun or in progress. The Pi shawl is still hot. Also, the Wrap featured last week has taken on a life of it's own. You have to see it in person to really appreciate how beautiful the different squares are, and the lovely yarn in all the different stitches. My favorite areas of the shawl are the beaded lace and mosaic knitted squares. It calls out for close examination.

Jane finished this adorable cardigan from an ancient pattern, knit of Cashsoft DK. The cable around the front and neck really makes the sweater. She knit this lace sock of Reynolds' Soft

Sea Wool. (Held by Rich Carty of Pinelands Music, who just stopped by and also almost sat on my uterus, which was resting on the chair.)

Jane is starting a sweater of Weaver's Wool from Mountain Colors and the colorway is so lovely, we wanted to share this picture of the beginning ribbing with you just for inspiration. Also by Jane, this feather and fan scarf done in Jitterbug Sock Yarn by Colinette.

Sabra is knitting a fabulous sweater of Woolbearers Ringspun, colorway Wildflower. The top down sweater is also going to be a class this fall. Isn't it a lovely color? Everyone who sees it comments about the yarn.

I am having trouble downloading all the picture I took, so I will publish this and start another post.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

FO - DONE - FINIS. I finished the Wrap last night and blocked the edgings this morning. I have never enjoyed knitting a project as much as this one. There are 21 separate blocks -- so you never get bored and the color changes of the K1C2 Paintbox are fabulous. We already have two classes and may add a third session. Can't wait to see what other color combos folks come up with. BTW, Gwen started hers, using Plymouth Boku and some N-word yarn. Here's what Gwen's wrap looks like:

Have you wondered whatever happened to Matt's Tattoos. Well, Miss Suzie dyed some yarn and it flew out the door. Here are some pix of what our customers have done with it. Lisa is making a Pi Shawl and Gwen made some very cool socks.

I got inspired by the colorways and did some dyeing using these bright colors -- a big departure for me.

Since I finished several projects in the last few week, I gave myself permission to start two more, another wrap from the latest Jo Sharp book and the scarf from Simply Shetland out of their newest yarn -- cashmere and lambswool. It is yummy to work with. We have a skein of each colorway at the shop -- these are going to be used for our "Little Bit of Lace" class, but it looks like we are going to have to order bags of each color. The latest book from Simply Shetland is already on reorder and many of the patterns use the new yarn.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Emily Ocker -- Where are you? It all began when my customer Judith came in and wanted to knit the Nomad Hat and Scarf from the latest Interweave Knits. After looking for the perfect yarn for almost an hour we finally found something that would give the same gauge but not be too heavy -- Bulky Leisure an alpaca/cotton (50/50) mix in a tweedy red colorway. Then, the question came up -- can you help me with the cast on. Sure I said. I looked at the pattern and there it was. The Emily Ocker Cast-on. Now, I heard of this cast-on before. Gwen was going to teach a top-down class last fall and included in her description was the teaching of the Emily Ocker cast-on. So I knew it had to be something special. I looked at the directions in Interweave Knits. Not a whole lot of information there. So, I went online and sure enough found tons of references. I found a tutorial, complete with pictures and another website with a neat explanation -- It turns out that Emily Ocker was a neighbor of none other than Elizabeth Zimmerman and this is her favorite cast on. Special indeed! But wait, I actually found pictures of the famous Ms. Ocker on another website complete with pictures of her showing the cast-on herself. What a find!

So now I found myself trying to learn how to do this cast on while Judith and her husband are staring at me. I tried with some practice yarn and after a few tries, I actually got the hang of it. You need a crochet hook and you hold the yarn so that it forms a circle and actually do single crochets around the circle. A little tricky but just realize that you go under the circle, grab the yarn and then go over the circle and grab the yarn and pull it through the loop on your crochet hook. Sounds simple, but believe me you need to practice for a bit. Then, I tried it with the yarn I want to use to make my Nomad Hat -- which is Woolbearer's Alfresco. A single spun hand dyed wool/acrylic mix. Kind of chunky. The Emily Ocker cast on was a little trickier with this yarn because of the bulk, but I did actually master it and can't wait to start knitting up my hat. Thank you Emily Ocker.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Almost Finished There are 20 blocks in the wrap. I'm now on Block 19 -- almost done. I would have been done a lot sooner, but ran into a little problem. When doing the lace block, I kept ripping out because it wasn't coming out right. So, I finally charted out the pattern and it appeared to me that the pattern was wrong (an extra k at the end of row 1). Since we are having a class I knew that I had to get it right. After tearing my hair out for a while, along with tearing out the yarn, I decided to email Chris at Knitting at Knoon and lo and behold, I was right. She's adding this to the errata on her website.

Here are some of the new items that came via UPS today.

The 25th anniversary issue of Vogue Knitting is a must-have issue. I just finished reading the article entitled "Chatting and Knitting with the New Guard". It's an interview with Vickie Howell, Shannon Okey, Stephanie Pearl-McPhee, Clara Parkes, Debblie Stoller and Adina Klein. -- icons of the "new generation of knitters". (or so dubbed by me) It's really interesting to read what these gals have to say. Run, don't walk to your nearest LYS and get your copy.

The new Rowan book has great, gorgeous patterns. Can't wait for our new shipment of Kid Silk Haze. We also got in the new Artfelt kits from Skacel. The mix of colors is wonderful -- can't wait to see what everyone comes up with. This week we are still waiting for our new laceweight yarn from Jumbuuk and the new lambswool/cashmere blend from Simply Shetland.

FINISHED I do actually finish some things from time to time. Here is a Rowan Bamboo Tape top and a baby blanket that I started over 2 years ago.

And here's a picture of Nina's felted purse -- made out of Woolbearers handpainted NZ Woolshire -- bobbles and all