About that Stash…

Sometime yesterday afternoon, I had a moment of panic.  I realized some of my new Stitches yarn was missing from this picture.

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PANIC!  What happened to it?  I hope I didn’t lose it at the hotel?  Could I recall seeing it at home?  Was it in any of the pictures I’d taken?  Did it fall out of the bag in the car?  OMG WHERE IS IT?

Thankfully my panic only lasted about 30 seconds.  One of the benefits of a tiny studio apartment…nothing is ever far away!  I found them exactly where I had left them…with all the other speckles.  D’oh!

It’s amazing how much emotion can be packed into such a short span.  These beauties will be central to my speckle fade cardigan plan.  The thought of losing them, while fleeting, was sad.  They’re just so gorgeous!!

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The two on the left are Savannah from Baah, a lovely soft MCN.  The one on the right is Tosh Merino Light in the Foliage colorway.

I frequently tell people to stop buying Tosh.  There are so many other great yarns to try, no need for pigeon holing.   That color though!!  I could not resist.  I saw it from a distance and once I had it in my hand, there was no putting it down.  I love the bright fun speckles but the dark green is what sold it!  It’s a completely grounded and wearable color but it also satisfies my need for rainbow clown barf.  It is my absolute definition of irresistible.   I would have been very sad to lose it.   And so, this is why Tosh remains a favorite.  Maybe one day I’ll learn, resistance is futile.

Similarly, in the maybe-one-day-I’ll-learn category…

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I started a new project yesterday.  The more I say I’m not going to do something…the more likely I am to do it.  (see:  buy yarn as another example.)  I definitely thought I was good on WIPs when I left you yesterday.  I didn’t expect this to happen either!  I’m pleading the Crochet Loophole on this one.  It’s totally reasonable to allow myself one little crochet project, along with all the knit WIPs.

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And by little, I mean 3200 yards of KnitPicks fingering weight Chroma!  Wooo!

A very generous knitter asked me at Stitches, do you like Chroma?  Why, yes.  Yes, I do.  She said she was destashing and she’ll bring it for me.  Well, Monday knit night rolled around and she was serious about this destash.  So, here I am with a giant bag of unexpected yarn!  It’s amazing!  And Rainbow!  And Stripey!

Just about 11 pm last night, my resolve broke and here I am with my newest WIP…a crochet blanket, log cabin style!  I’m going with a big hook and a loose stitch in the hopes that this will be a big, squishy rainbow hug!  It’s gonna be so good!


 

Stitches West 2018

Before I get into Stitches, I’ve got one last Olympic photo left on my desktop.

Behold…the Clipboard of Power!

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I laughed so hard when I saw that.  Also, I want one!  Clipboards definitely give you super powers.  This one must be very special.  I bet they needed specific training before being allowed to handle it.  Yup, I definitely want one.

List #1 for the Clipboard of Power…all the yarns I want to buy next year.

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Neighborhood Fiber Co for starters.  I was drawn back to their booth so many times.  Surprisingly, I bought nothing there??

Hedgehog Fibers…nope, didn’t bring any home?!  A Verb for Keeping Warm…it was gorgeous, didn’t buy any though.  I passed up the Shibui booth entirely.  I never visited the Yarn Over Truck.  YOTH…not this year.  Sincere Sheep, such a shame to miss.

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Frankly, once I gave myself permission to buy whatever I wanted, it’s amazing that this is all I came home with:

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So where DID I shop?

First stop:  Miss Babs

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That’s five skeins of Yowza caked up at the top of the photo.  It’s the yarn that set my color palette for the weekend and for year one of nephew knitting.  I hit the teal-purple-grey with a pop of chartreuse color scheme pretty hard this year.  If I’m going to do all this baby knitting, I may as well like it.

Those five skeins are going to become the ultimate Rebecca Danger layette set — a monster blanket and a monster sweater, both with pockets for monster friends.  There will be a whole gaggle of monster friends and whatever else I can squeeze out of those 2800 yards.  That’s 1.6 miles of yarn.  It sounds like a lot.  I’m not convinced though.  Good thing I kept shopping…

Next, KnitPicks.  I’ve long had a love-hate relationship with them.  Love the product, hate the shipping issues.  Being able to buy their yarns in person, even if it’s only at special events, is awesome!

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I got a couple hanks of the new worsted weight yarn, Provincial Tweed.  It’s got baby sweater potential.  I love tweed for it’s ability to hide pills.  I’m guessing it will hide spit up pretty well too?!

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And of course, fan favorite, self-striping sock yarn, Felici.  I don’t even knit socks but show special $3.50/ball…how do you resist that?  Blaming this one on the impending baby as well…thinking a Baby Vertebrae and a set of little baby leg warmers.  Chubby baby legs wrapped in yarn are pretty adorable.  Once the idea was planted, there was no ignoring it.

Still, though, I wasn’t done.  Zombie Yarns was definitely calling my name.  I can’t wait to knit this.  I got the ‘Playful Monster’ yarn pack to make the ‘Playful Monster Hoodie’.  I’m not sure it’s monster enough though.  I may have to put some monster ears on it to jazz it up a little more.  (and also knit it in my size!)

 

Never fear though, I did by some yarn for myself.  I know you were probably concerned about that.  I think I’ve finally collected enough speckles for a speckle fade cardi!!

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A couple finds from the Western Sky Knits sale bin (the two on the left)!  $15 speckles! Yes Please!  In the middle, a gorgeous purple speckle from Hooker’s Corner called Wisterious.  Love it!  On the right, another purple speckle, this one from Arucania.

I think getting out the rest of the collection for a full fade inspection will really be the motivation I need to cast on a fingering weight sweater.

And finally, there’s the first yarn to make it onto needles.  It’s Valley Yarns, Goshen – a cotton/tencel/silk blend.  A July baby needs a cotton blanket!

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A bit of a swatch and off I went…

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I’m just happy it’s not a hat!  :)  I’m making good progress.  Fingers crossed I can resist the urge to cast on more new yarn.  It’s time to finish my current sweater WIP.  A little focus goes a long way!


 

Ravellenic Wrap Up

The Olympics are over.  Phew!  Finally…I don’t think I could take any more!  I didn’t get 13 hats done, but I did get 12 done!

I’m okay with that.  I’m still a winner.  It’s just tough to stay focused on the finish line when it passes directly through the Stitches West marketplace!  On the last day, I wanted to knit new yarn, not old yarn.   The new yarn is soooooo good!  (…More on that later.)

First, let’s see the last two hats, they’re good ones!  Another Nephew hat, it started as a combo Michigan/Marcus hat.  I was quite self-congratulatory when I realized the overlap between baby’s monogram and dad’s favorite team.

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I tried a couple yarns for the duplicate stitch.  Even tried holding them double.  I never really got over the whole light stitch on a dark background to a place I liked though.  I learned long ago, don’t mess with logos people love if you can’t do it right.  This was not right, so I scrapped it.

Instead, I went back to the dinosaur theme and this happened…

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The T.Rex applique was fun to make.  It was a bit complex but the pattern is clear and has lots of pictures.  Find it here, if you want to try it yourself.  I’m quite pleased with my results.

And then, there’s this…

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An ode to Jayne Cobb and Firefly.

As always, this hat started out as something different but once I saw the brown stripe pooling, I knew I’d have to adjust the plan.   The new plan turned out to be waaaay better anyhow.

I’ve never watched Firefly but I have enough geeky friends to know, this is absolutely perfect!  My Mom dyed this yarn for me and it turns out, the iconic Jayne Cobb hat from the show, was made by Jayne’s Mom.   It’s so delightfully meta.  I love it.  It really spruced this hat up.  Now to chose a fun pom-pom.  This is definitely a Pom YES situation…I’m thinking the middle one in that first row, with all the green/blue/purple shades.

Tomorrow, I’ll tell you about Stitches and the yarn.  THE YARN!  It’s sooo good!  I’m in the middle of a winding frenzy but I’ve managed to get one new project on the needles.  Yay for yarn sold in balls!

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See you tomorrow with all the fibery details!


 

Stitches Weekend!

Woooo!  It’s time! Stitches is here!  My tax refund was deposited yesterday!  I’m ready!!

I was hoping to finish up my Ravellenic/Olympic challenge by now, 13 hats in two weeks.  Here’s how it’s looking…

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8 Completely finished hats, 1 waiting for embellishment, 2 on the needles.  I’m so close.  The Olympics aren’t over so I’m not done but I really wanted to be working on my sweater this weekend.  Remember my sweater…

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It’s been a while.  I’m looking forward to getting back to it.  I’d say next week but let’s face it, the new yarn is going to win.   Baby projects galore!  It’s going to be so fun!

I’ll be sure to share, in the meantime watch over on Instagram for Stitches Market pics and updates!!  Miss Babs, Knitpicks, Webs, Mimi’s Needle Basket and Steven Be are at the top of the queue!  I’m hoping to squeeze in some hat knitting at the bar too, so if you’re at Stitches today or tomorrow, look for me there and come say hello!!

Happy Friday, Indeed!!!!!!!  (<- it really is that exciting!)


 

WIP Wednesday – Surprise! It’s Hats!

Old Business:

Medals have been claimed for the next four hats.  They inadvertently had an animal theme happening.  That brings the medal count to 8.

New Business:  Olympic fatigue is setting in but I’m persevering.

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Thank you Noro for always providing some wacky color changes.  This is a single skein of Silk Garden Lite that’s been hanging around waiting for an excuse.  I think I’ll pom it, the remainder of the skein echoes the green of the ribbing.  I think it’ll balance that crazy pink section a bit.  And then I’ll duplicate stitch something on it, maybe something new but probably just got with one of the old standbys for my Etsy shop.

This next hat is a special knit to highlight rare disease awareness.

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One stitch in a project often seems insignificant.  I mess up one stitch and don’t even bat on eye.  Now imagine it’s one person, one person living with a rare disease.   It’s not so insignificant anymore.

Rare diseases often have only 400 diagnosed cases in the entire country.  That is an uphill battle for research and funding.  They’re often called Orphan Diseases because no one wants to fund them.  Those suffering from a rare disease need all the love they can get.

Next week, February 28th, is Rare Disease Day.  A day for raising awareness about rare diseases.  Find out more about Rare Disease Day and what you can do here!

I’ve added my Rare Stitch to show support & love for all the families out there dealing with rare diseases on a daily basis.  It’s just a small token to let people know they aren’t alone.   It’s no coincidence that one knit stitch looks like a heart either.  The Rare Stitch is pure love.

The Rare Stitch project was started by Margaux at 1010_Studio. Check out her Instagram for more information.  She’s been a tireless advocate for rare disease awareness since one effected her family.  You can join the Rare Stitch movement to show your support on social media too…just add a single duplicate stitch to any project and share a photo using #TheRareStitch and tag 1010_Studio so it can be seen!  I hope you’ll join me in sharing the love.

 

Hat Count: 8.5

I’m still making hat progress.  I’ve got two new hats finished today.  My bear idea isn’t fully where I want it yet but I’ve got a good proto-type…

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I think he needs to be a little bigger and if I’m going to pass him off as a Grizzly, he should probably be brown!  Good thing Stitches is at the end of the week!

I finished the next, in what is bound to be a limitless parade, nephew hat.  Adults will definitely be reduced to goofy faces and baby talk when little Markosaurus wears this one.

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There’s also two hats currently on the needles.  With a bit of luck, I might get them finished tonight!  IMG_6189

The blue garter stitch number is killing me.  Garter stitch??  Who purls when then knit hats??  Not me.  So I had to start the one of the right…I need a break after an entire row of nothing but purls?!?!  It’s just terrible.

After that I only need 4 more.  I was messing around with brioche yesterday.  Liked my colors well enough.  Couldn’t come up with a cast on that I liked though.

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This is just a swatch with a standard long tail cast on.  I also tried a 2-color Italian cast on.  It was fiddly and by the time I got it right, I decided I didn’t like the way it looked and it offered no structure.   So, before I get a gold medal for a brioche hat, I need a gold medal worthy cast on, Anybody have a suggestion?

I, also, thought about pom-poms a lot this weekend.  I need to watch to youtube videos on how to make fancy pom-poms.  Anybody have suggestions here too?

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See the guy at the bottom of the frame with a red & white pom-pom hat.  It caught my eye because I thought, maybe, it was a Canada hat with a maple leaf pom-pom!  How cool would that be? I don’t think that’s the case here but I wish it was.

The pom-pom on the right side here:

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I think that one’s a camel.  I never got a better look at it.

And then, there’s the luge crowd.  White hats with white pom-poms.  Really?

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Kudos to the one brave Romanian who opted for the hat with flag colors!  Hats off to you, sir!

Now, back to the knitting…I think I might be able to get my baker’s dozen in by Friday if I keep at it!


 

On the Podium

Success!  I’ve been awarded medals for my first four hats!

There’s really no time for celebration though.  There’s still 9 more to reach the goal.  The next hat is ready.  I love how it turned out, but man was it a pain in the butt.

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Tentacles are a hassle.  I’m not sure how actual cephalopods do it.

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I should have Hat 6 to report on as well, but distractions happen.  That’s actually a lot colder than it looks but still, we’ve been having gorgeous, dry weather and I’ve got plenty of wool to handle the crisp ocean breeze.

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I can say though, it’s beyond this stage!  And I’m really loving the colors so far, very foresty.  I think this might be a good bear hat…I’m gonna hunker down with some figure skating and make progress tonight.

As always, I’ll let ya know how it goes…