The Stripe Goes On

Two days off sounds like a lot.  Turns out, it’s not!  At least not when you’re cramming all the abandoned weekday chores, an entire week of social visits and as much knitting as possible into those two days.  I’ve got some stripes to show for my weekend efforts though…


I’m happy about them which is a good thing.  I can now direct all my attention to the never-ending will I have enough yarn question.


That green ball is shrinking at an alarming rate!  I’ve got 18 stripes (or 36 rows) left.  It doesn’t look to bad but looks can be deceiving.   The center of that ball is hollow.  Earlier in the project I center pulled for a bit.  It’s officially mantra time.  At least the rows are getting shorter. At least the rows are getting shorter.  At least the rows are getting shorter.  At least the rows are getting shorter.  At least the rows are getting shorter.

Lost at Yarn Chicken, Again!

For the second time this project, I have knit as fast as I possibly can and my yarn did not get any longer.  WTH?  I thought that worked!?!  The good news is, I don’t think it matters.  I lost at yarn chicken.  Big whoop.  I’m used to it by now!  IMG_4169

Not only was I about six rows short, I stopped mid row.  And you can’t really tell!  I’m very pleased with myself for just moving on!  I’ve been on the brink of becoming a perfectionist.  Glad to see I haven’t gone over that edge, yet!


The thing is…this is becoming a habit.  I’m only 2 ridges into my next wedge and I’m worried that it’s now time to run out of green.  This shawl is rapidly approaching shlanket stage (half shawl, half blanket!) so… Yarn Chicken:  Round 3!


I think I’ve learned my lesson!  I’m prepared this time!  I’ve still got lots of yellow and a tiny bit of dark grey!  and they have a great contrast gradient in a black & white photo.


I’m not even gonna worry, I’m going straight for the stripes this time!  I’ll save the worry for the yellow i-cord bind off I’ve got planned!  Despite the fact that it hasn’t worked yet, I plan to knit as fast as possible!  And I’ve got two whole days off this weekend!  That’s soooo much knitting time!  I can’t wait!

WIP Wednesday: Exploration Continuation

I’m starting to figure out the work rhythm.  It’s looked good on paper from the beginning but the first couple weeks were a bumpy adjustment.  I’m into week 4 already.  It’s been like the blink of an eye.  Shawl progress, on the other hand, is approaching another slowdown, perhaps even a screeching halt.


It was just four weeks yesterday since I picked up this green Western Sky Knits dk.  I ran out of the dark grey.  It’s a discontinued yarn, naturally!  No more to be found.  So stripes it was!  Last week I finished my striped section.  I reserved judgement on it until I was well into the next light stripe.


I have officially decided it’s acceptable.  I may even like it, in the future.  Phew!  Just in time for the next phase of worry.  I’m back to playing yarn chicken, and I think loosing again.  I was hoping the extra ball of light grey would be enough to get me through the next section.


I’m still hoping.  Apparently, I’m stupidly optimistic when it comes to knitting.  I don’t think there’s any way I have enough yarn left for 13 more short rows (meaning it’s really 26 rows.)  Each pair of rows gets 10 stitches shorter as I go, I think this is where the optimism comes in.  They’re getting shorter…it’s only 140 stitches right now, that’s not even very many, right?  RIGHT?

Ha!  So what color stripes do I add this time?  At least I can have a plan when my hands catch up to the inevitable shortage my brain is certain about.

Back at it.

Work is such a distraction.  OY!  There was not much knitting time last week.  The weekend was better!  I’m very happy about that.  There are only 53 knitting days until I leave for Rhinebeck.  There’s no time for distractions!


I’ve finally made it past the sleeve divide!  It’s starting to look like a sweater!  Woot!


The only part I’m not happy with is the spot in the armpit where the cables meet.  I had originally decided they were going to end but later decided they should continue all the down the side.  I was making lazy decisions in the beginning, yarn-overs instead of angled increases, all left leaning cables because I prefer holding the cable needle in the front.  Well, it’s true what they say, proper planning prevents poor production.  My cables meet in a rather awkward fashion because they’re going in the same direction.  Had I planned properly, I would have mirrored the cables and they could have met in a far more elegant fashion.


I certainly don’t care enough to go back to the beginning and make the necessary changes.  I could have positioned the cables parallel to each other rather than merged.  I intentionally made another lazy decision though.  I don’t want to do four cables on a row, I only want to do two.  LOL.  Apparently I never learn.


The only place I show off my armpit is riding the bus, as I hang on for dear life.  I don’t care if those people judge me for an inelegant armpit.  I’m silently judging them too!  Welcome to Monday!  Luckily, I don’t plan to ride the bus today!

I can’t follow rules.

I can’t follow rules.  The easiest way to get me to do something is tell me not to.  I can’t help it.  Naturally, that means I can’t simply answer 11 questions from the ladies who gave me a Liebster Award.  Some of the questions deserve entire posts, like ‘What is your dream vacation?’  I’ve been on my dream vacation.  It was a dream, it’s still a dream.  All through my unemployment, I kept thinking about moving there!  It’s an enchanting place!  And it’s not an uncommon dream vacation for knitters either…Iceland!


Yes, Iceland has awesome waterfalls!

It really was that cold…in June! Look for the little red dot on the ledge in the back, that’s a tiny little person for scale!
Again, look for the people in the back for scale! It was wet & cold but I sat on the bench and knit for at least 5 minutes!
A lot of awesome waterfalls! 
There’s some nice beaches too!
By nice, I mean cold & windy! Just my kind of weather!

Nothing compares to the sweaters though!  There’s like 10x more sweaters than people in the country!  And they’re all different!  The amount of variation is impressive, awesome and inspiring! CIMG3617

Fun Fur! No, Really!! I can’t believe someone imported that shit.

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Sweaters come from yarn…

All natural botanical dyes native to Iceland (save the indigo, apparently even the vikings imported it!)

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This is a small fraction of what I came home with:

…I pretend I live in a yarn store!

Yarn comes from fleeces…

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Fleeces come from sheep…

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And Iceland has a lot of all those things!  It’s an amazing knitting destination!  I can’t wait to go back!  Knitter’s Paradise!  If it’s on your bucket list, and even if it’s not, I can’t recommend going enough.  It will be worth it!

A Liebster Award Bounty!


I was going to do a WIP Wednesday post, my Exploration Continuation is making good progress!  I’m nearing the point of make or break with my decision to add more color and stripes.  Of course, more data is good so I’ll get the next section started before I open it up to the committee for a decision!


Instead today, I’ll tell you about the Liebster Award, as I was nominated twice this week! The Liebster Award is given to bloggers by other bloggers!  It’s a way of spreading the love, letting bloggers know they’re appreciated and also introducing readers to new blogs they may not now about.   It’s reminiscent of the chain letters I painstakingly wrote by hand as a kid!  There’s rules…Here they are…

Here’s how the award works:

  1. Make a post thanking and linking the person who nominated you.
    Include the Liebster Award sticker in the post too.
  2. Nominate 5 -10 other bloggers who you feel are worthy of this award. Let them know they have been nominated by commenting on one of their posts. You can also nominate the person who nominated you.
  3. Ensure all of these bloggers have fewer than 200 followers.
  4. Answer the eleven questions asked to you by the person who nominated you, and make eleven questions of your own for your nominees or you may use the same questions.
  5. Lastly, COPY these rules in your post.

Today, I’m just going to get to the first part, nominating other bloggers!

I’ll start with thanks to the ladies who nominated me, AndAlexAnd and Orange Smoothie Knits!  It’s one thing to look at stats and see the numbers going up.  It’s something entirely different (and far more rewarding) to have those ‘numbers’ become friends, especially knitting friends!  There’s always room for more knitting friends!!

AndAlexAnd’s Liebster post is here, check it out!  Orange Smoothie Knits has a Liebster post too! 

For my nominations, I wanted to start with something a little different…

Stitch Boom Bang — Not always knitting, lots of embroidery and I love seeing her work!  She’s got the best taste in pop culture stitchery!  In addition to amazing stitched likenesses of Hall and Oates, she wrote a full concert review, complete with twenty seven eight-by-ten color glossy photographs with circles and arrows and a paragraph on the back of each one explaining what each one was to be used as evidence against us.  (okay so it wasn’t 27 and they weren’t eight-by-ten, but they did have arrows and circles, and they did make me think of Arlo and the massacree at Alice’s there’s that!)  Next up…

ca6887ba3fc808e9c1667272f9cc453c Maggienesium at Project(s) in Progress!   We’re both chemists, so there’s that!  I love the clever moniker and she’s got the cutest little knit erlenmeyer flask as a profile pic.  He’s so happy, it’s like he barely knows he’s full of toxic chemicals!  Good for him!  She’s got a Liebster Award post here! 

Another of my favorites, who’s been nominated for a Liebster more than once, Wolfberry Knits.  The first time she caught my attention was a post about renovating an old train car  to use as a craft studio!  It’s pretty awesome, I’m totally jealous!  I haven’t seen a Liebster post yet from her, but keep an eye out, maybe we’ll get one soon!

Next up, may not technically qualify under the ‘rules’ but she’s certainly worthy of a mention, AndreSue Knits.  Just as I discovered her blog, Andi was discovering video podcasting!  I love her podcast and she’s become the standard by which I judge other podcasts.  Unfortunately for them, most other podcasts don’t live up to her standards.  I’ve watched some truly hideous videos on youtube…turns out some people think 3 and a half hours is an appropriate length for a blurry, poorly edited, disorganized podcast??  Ack!  You’ll only get high quality video, with well organized and interesting discussion from Andi!  She’s got great taste in yarns, colorways and patterns!  Definitely check her out!  The added bonus…it’s much easier to knit and watch a podcast than knit and read blogs at the same time!  She’s also got a great Ravelry group! 

That’s only four…but I’m out of time!  And those are four good blogs to read!  If you read those, guaranteed they will point you in the direction of more!

(I nearly signed off with ‘Happy Thursday’…that’s the kind of week it is!  It sure feels like Thursday!)

FO Monday – Pepperberry Shawlette

My Pepperberry Shawlette is done!


The yarn is Pepperberry Knits Mini Skein bundle, 360 yds of sport weight cashmere!  It was 8 mini skeins total, two of each color!  The pattern is a basic top down triangle, 4 increases on right side rows, 2 increases on wrong side rows.  It pretty much fell off the needles, it was so easy!


It’s the perfect little triangle, small enough to shove in a pocket for later!  Now I just need the summer fog to return.  I’m ready!



40 Minutes Shy of FO Friday


On Monday, I was confident I’d have this little triangle shawl done by Friday.  On Wednesday, I knew that was crazy talk.  Somewhere yesterday morning, I had talked myself back into it.  I was so close.  Surely I could squeak a little knitting into my busy day.  I didn’t plan for distractions though!

One benefit of knitting with mini skeins…I could easily estimate how much I had left.  I’m using two skeins of each color.  I counted 8 rows in the first teal mini.  Take one away to account for the growth of each row, that means I had 6 rows to go plus the bind off.  In my 30 minute ‘commute’ I was able to get 3 rows done.  That leaves me 3 rows plus the bind off left, or roughly 40 minutes of knitting to go!  The optimist in me (aka the lady full of crazy talk) things Friday isn’t over yet!  There’s still time.

But first, I’ve gotta put the distraction out of my mind. IMG_4111

Anyone who’s read this blog regularly should have figured out I have a stash accumulation problem.  It’s completely justified to assume I’ve done it again and added more yarn to the stash.  This is some awesome stuff too…I’m a big fan of Ireland and Irish yarns (my favorite sweater, wore daily, is blue tweed from Ireland!)  Much to everyone’s surprise, this is not my yarn!  It’s a big distraction though…


It’s a big tangled distraction!  I have a friend, a delightful, irresistible fellow that I just adore.  Like all of us, he has a mother.  It’s safe to say that she played a big part in his delightful, irresistibleness so when she asked for help with her lovely yarn that had become a tangled mess, I couldn’t say no.  I was happy to find it’s not nearly as bad as it looks.  This is a rather sticky wool, so while it looks bad, the stick has actually prevented the tangle from becoming horrible.  It now looks like this…


There’s one skein left to untangle.  Hard to say where my attention will go next, both the tangle and the cashmere triangle will be satisfying to finish.  The sense of accomplishment from turning a big tangle of yarn into a neatly wound cake is something I’m sure only knitters can appreciate.  After a frustrating afternoon at the new job, having tangible success on my hands was just what I needed!  It is safe to say, they’ll both be finished by Monday!  TGIF!  Nothing like work to make you appreciate the weekend!

Happy Knitting!  See you Monday!

One Mini Left


I’m down to just one Pepperberry Knits Cashmere Mini Skein!  I’m loving the teal!  I spoke too soon when I said it would be finished by Friday though!  I’m not thinking like a person with a job yet!  I feel good about saying next week though!  Each of these mini skeins is 45 yards.  That sounds like nothing…it should practically finish itself!  It’s just stockinette, it’s not anything fancy.  I’m not even doing M1L/M1R, it’s all KFB!   Gimme 5 minutes and I’ll talk myself back into finishing it by tomorrow!

WIP Wednesday: Exploration Continuation

The last time I shared this project it was Stitch n Pitch and I managed to run out of yarn before the game even started!  D’oh!  I tried to get more locally, no luck.  It’s Debbie Bliss Cashmerino DK, which turns out to be a discontinued yarn.  I was able to find a couple stashes for sale on Ravelry that even matched the correct dye lot!  WHOOOO!  The excitement was short lived.  Unfortunately, those Ravelers never returned my messages.  That left me two choices…frog the whole thing or add more colors.  Being a Stephen West based project, add more colors was really the only choice!


During last week’s field trip to Monarch Knitting, I found one lone skein of Western Sky Knits Sequoia DK in color Spring Greens.  I didn’t have my WIP to do a side by side color comparison but I liked the color enough to wing it.  So far, I’m pleased with it!


I wanted to use up as much of the dark grey as possible so I’m striping the current wedge.  The next wedge will be all light grey and the wedge after that will be all green.  I think I’ll be ready to end it about then, I’m thinking some kind of yellow & green stripes for a border.  It’s going to depend on how much yarn I’ve got left at that point.


And of course, it depends on how I like it as it progresses.  I’m undecided.  Part of what makes WestKnits’ designs work for me is the kitchen sink approach.  Throw it all in and it works.  I’ve barely made it into the kitchen.  I’ve throw in that cabinet from the corner, haven’t made it around to the sink just yet.  Maybe I need more colors??!?!