Blah blah blah, yes this is my Knitting Blog!

Sometimes a flurry of activity, sometimes a long time with nothing at all. And right now it looks like a gap of a couple of years (shame on me).

But blog or no blog, I do manage to knit every day - and so should you!

(Interested in my photos? Then by all means Click Here to see them.

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Thursday, October 04, 2007

Worth 1000 words?

Or maybe it's 2000 words, since here are two pictures.

Oddly, the perfect heel (above) is the first of the two socks, that one done NOT while watching America's Next Top Model:

The second, horrid, mutant heel (but with excellent ventilation) will be sewn up after the fact, not ripped out and re-done as originally thought.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

2nd Bumblebee heel proves my undoing

I am a MO-Ron.

The heel for the first sock is PERFECT - the second one I may actually rip out (had I confidence in my ability to rip back to a safe starting point).

All those wraps and k or p 2 tog - eeesh I'm getting a headache!

Will see if I can't cheat and sew up the HOLES in the heel - if not I guess I'll head to Unwind and throw myself on their mercy!

Pics of the disaster Swiss Cheese Heel tomorrow when I can again face the sock.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Finally cast on the second Bumblebee sock

No pic, but I finally had vive minutes to myself today to cast on the second Bumblebee sock.

This is the closest I've come to the dreaded One Sock Syndrome - normally I cast on the second sock within hours of finishing the first one, just in case.

More to come, as it develops....

Sunday, September 23, 2007

About finishing that first Bumblebee Sock -

I gave up on the "finish the whole skein" idea when the cuff of this sock hit 8 inches. That's enough already! So then, just when I thought this was going to be easier even than a top-down sock, I just totally screwed the pooch trying to bind off.

Okay I read the instructions on the SEWN BIND OFF but figured I'd just BO in the K1 P1 rib like normal - I think you know how THAT turned out - had to un-bind off - a real thrill with size 3 - and now I'm still stuck trying to figure out the sewn bind-off with some pretty mangled stitches. What, no online video for that???

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

More About the Twize

In response to MJ asking how easy/hard this top is to make for someone just branching out into garments -

The pattern is simple!

You need to know how to knit and purl, increase and decrease, and that's it. Plus three-needle bind-off.

The first 6 rows are seed stitch (and on the front the center 8 or 9 depending on the garment size). I used markers on either side of the seed stitch center just to keep myself reminded. There are two waist decreases, then two increases, and that's all until the underarm decreases, which are simple and obvious.

The straps are bound off together with the 3-needle technique and you seam the sides and that's it.

I did revise the pattern to do it in the round (eliminates side seaming) but haven't tried it that way yet.

Also, I don't know about you, but every time I use a pattern I use at least one skein fewer than it calls for. Same with this one. I did the size large in five skeins and this size small in I think three! The pattern calls for six and five. Go figure, but good to know because the bamboo ain't cheap.

Also if you buy the Twize from Unwind they will give you the pattern free with it.

Go get 'em - make this top!

Monday, May 15, 2006

Second Twize Top - perfecto!

I started this top in what I thought would be plenty of time for my pal Misty's birthday, but as it turns out, I only just finished it about a week ago. I started it on my one day you have to give them for Jury Duty, but instead of knitting all day I got picked for a case and had to go and listen to the case most of the day (before successfully weaseling out of being on the jury).

No matter, it did get done, and between her crazy schedule and mine, there just has been no time to run it over to her.

Ran over to her house today, made her strip, threw on the top, and here's the result:

Not bad, I'd say, not bad.

This is the purple colorway of the Twize bamboo yarn. I like it better than the wild rice colors, but I get compliments on that one too so who knows.

Saturday, April 15, 2006

Wht I'm up to these days

I stopped into UNWIND to show off my TWIZE top, and saw Karyn's MTA Sweater on display.

It's cute and light and, well, see for yourself.

In just a couple of evenings I'm through three balls of the yarn and have about 9 or 10 inches of the body done. No pics of my work because (I think for the first time) I am actually using the suggested yarn AND following a pattern. My top will look exactly like Karyn's:

So far a fun project, and at three bucks a ball for the yarn how can you lose?

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Back in the saddle!

It's not that I haven't been knitting (although I did take a couple of weeks off for vacation), I just haven't been writing about it or taking pictures.

Okay, so here's what I finished last night:

It's a pattern from UNWIND and it's called Twize - or the yarn is called that and they suggest you use it for this top. Whichever.

I have to say, for the first time I feel like something I made FITS me - which is no thanks to the good folks at Twize, because they just say "Size S M and L" on the pattern, giving no indication of measurements that fit those classifications.

But crabbing aside, this thing is pretty cool.

The yarn is 100% bamboo - yes I said bamboo - and it feels soft like a combination of cotton and silk. Normally I'm no fan of browns, but this colorway reminds me of wild rice and is visually cool.

It's mostly stockinette with a center column of seed stitch. Bottom is seed stitch too, as are the straps and armholes. Simple!

Detail of the center seed stitch:

I got impatient and 3-needle bound the straps off together probably about an inch early, but I think with wear the straps may have an inch of give in them and I didn't want them to be too long. We'll see.

The pattern calls for a mild waist decrease (2 times) I read the pattern wrong and did it three, which I think had better results. Instead of doing it at row 18 and row 36, I did it at row 1, row 18, and row 36 (and of course did the corresponding three increases).

For now I'm more than satisfied. I'll add some better pictures if I can get Jenny to take some today.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Am I dead?

Well, not exactly.

But - shockingly - I haven't been doing much knitting lately.

I had a two-week vacation, and although I brought a project, nothing says "blecch" like knitting wool in humid Florida.

So I got nuttin' and I don't care who knows it.

Back at home, I'm still working on the ugliest cardigan in the world. I hate it but I can't stop - I keep thinking it will turn out okay.

But really I think it's shit, and will likely rip out the whole damned thing at some point.

It's a cotton cardigan, made with different colorways of the same yarn. Pics and specs to come, but for now let's say I have a lot done: Bottom up, with all the stitches at once (CO for both fronts and back) so as not to have to count rows and match up the color differences later. I did 15" of that and put the stitches for the two fronts on holders. Now I'm working up the back and have about 3 inches done.

It's a lot to do on something you hate, Hate, HATE.

What the hell is wrong with me?

Saturday, January 21, 2006

Like the Universe,

My knitting is expanding.

I've completed my second moebius scarf and have run into an interesting problem: I counted 99 stitches as I cast on (and counted "one" for each scoop/wrap as instructed in the Cat Bordhi book), and then joined. I knitted the first row, and as expected, 99 stitches later I was at the halfway point. The marker was on the lower needle and 99 stitches later (or so) the marker appeared back at the home position.

I counted as I did the next row and, and noticed that instead of 198 stitches I only had 194 when the marker was again between the needles. So on the third round I did a make one every 50 stitches to compensate and get me back to 198 stitches total.

I was a bit concerned because when I had reached 198 stitches I was only at the "belly button" of the work; the marker was still halfway away from me.

I forged ahead and I'm sure you can guess the results: on the last round I counted 393 stitches!

The scarf is twice as long as I wanted (about 72" so it hangs 36" around my neck), and of course the yarn only lasted half as deep as I'd wanted too. I was hoping to wrap the extra wide scarf twice - once around my neck and once as a hood.

I am okay about ripping out and doing it over, especially since I did the whole thing last night and just did the last two rounds today, but before I do that I need to know - have I done something obvious and wrong? I did knit into the front and back leg of each stitch (as instructed) for the first half, then when the stitches were mounted correctly I only knit each one once for the second half of the first round. And yet....

(I don’t know if I had the same problem with my first scarf because I didn't count the number I cast on for that - just cast on until I could join and started knitting. It too is a lot longer than I'd like.)

Any help from the knitting collective is much appreciated!

Sunday, January 08, 2006

All Hopped Up - again

During the course of my regular knitblog browsing, I came across this entry on
Yarn Harlot - and my life was transformed. Again.

I had to call 6 yarn stores before I could find this book, but it was worth it - Cat Bordhi has come up with something truly amazing.

And easy.

And amazing.

I'm not finished yet, but I really love the idea of making this as a true Mobius, not just a scarf with the ends grafted together.

It requires a superlong circular - 40 - 60 inches - which I had to buy, but other than that you already have everything you need. (Of course you also have to buy the book or a pattern from Cat to get the Mobius Cast On instructions.) I got a 60" Addi Turbo but it's too long so I used the mighty DENISE with a 40" cord.

Not sure if this is peculiar to Denise but I had a problem early on with the needle getting bunched up:

But I emailed Cat - and I have to say I love this aspect of the internet - She Emailed Me Right Back, and told me I needed to un-bunch the needle, which I did. Problem solved:

As you can see, the damned thing starts in the middle and radiates out. I snapped this photo just before finishing the first round of the yellow you can see how this goes.

More pics when it is done. Ya-hooo!

Friday, January 06, 2006


So of course that feather pattern scarf has been done for two days already.

I set it on a towel, stretched it nice and even from side to side, pinned the shit out of it, and misted like crazy with water. Then I left it overnight, and what do you know, the blocking worked great!

No pic today - the camera's upstairs and I'm downstairs - but really it looks just as you would expect.

I'm pleased, and I think maybe a little braver for the experience.

Good thing too, because I just signed up for the Lilly Chin workshop at UNWIND.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Tickle me with a Feather!


This feather pattern is done over a span of 8 rows. The first three sets of 8 rows had at least one mistake, but once I figured the thing out (including that I had one too many stitches in the row for the first two 8's) things started coming together.

It's actually simple and it goes pretty fast - this is just from a little time last night, and it's longer than pictured -

And if you stretch it side to side (I hope the cotton will block well) you can even see the pattern!

Monday, January 02, 2006

The Year I At Least TRY....

Okay so last year I said I would try to move my knitting to the next level by trying some new stitches.

Well, with few exceptions, that really didn't pan out. I'm a chicken!

So today, January 2nd, I am making my first stab at a feather pattern -

Yeah, it's just the first 8 rows, and I already know I screwed up the end of Row 7, but I'm going to keep going until I get confident.

Does what I have look like the picture? Not to my reasoning, but it's only 8 rows in.

And by the way Yes I Am using craft store Sugar 'n Cream yarn - cheap as all getout but very easy to use for something like this - no fraying, no eyelashes, no nothing - just nice friendly cotton.

Thanks to knitty for the pattern, and to Michael's for the yarn (it's even pink) -

More as this story develops....

Friday, December 30, 2005

The Wrapup!

Okay so I've been knitting myself crazy over this whole Mya thing, and here is what I have completed for her. Warning - it's a long post!

But first, this picture is of the E-Zim knitted Möbius I whipped up because I got tired of looking at this lone ball of multicolored wool.

Best thing about this project? Since the Möbius strip is a theoretical object, I was able to do the single crochet border on both sides as one continuous line - There Is Only One Edge to this item!

I washed it this morning because last night when I wore it it was a bit scratchy. Seems to have softened.

It's about half as long as E-Zim recommends - she says 60 inches! - but it's perfect for me. Southern Cal gets a bit chilly but really warm clothes are of no use to me.

Back to Mya -

She's due on the scene around January 15th, but as we know it's an imprecise science at best, so anytime after - um - today - she might just show up.

At least she'll have plenty to wear!

Here's a super-soft crazy combo:

And here's that silk sweater and hat combo - note the YO borders!

Cute Pillbox Hat:

And this Frankenstein-Style vest. By the way NEVER EVER knit with this stuff - I nearly killed myself! As it is I made it a vest instead of a sweater because I couldn't stand another moment of it!

Another delightfully soft yarn that's IMPOSSIBLE to work with - except maybe on a scarf:

Two shots of the yellow seed stitch set - I really love the way this came out -

Okay, That's IT!

Saturday, December 17, 2005

It's a THREE-fer!

Yes, I know it's been A Long Time since I posted, but I've been busy like everyone else this time of year.

So let's get to it.

I took Ba's shrug to UNWIND for some glamour shots before mailing it off, so here's how it looks. The photos don't show how shiny it is, which is a shame. The stripe worked great, though, and I'm very pleased with it overall.

Next is the red and white number I whipped up using the E-Zim technique for the seamless in the round yoke sweater. It needed a little improv for a kid's size (this is going to a two-year-old tomorrow) but otherwise it worked great and looks super cute.

Knitted in red and white Suss Cotton that I've had in my stash FOREVER - so I get points for using up old yard AND making something nice for Veronika, who so appreciates everything I make for her.

Yay (and Happy Birthday) Veronika!

Note - I have invented what I am calling The Popcorn Neck -

I made the thing twice as high in K1 P1 rib but discovered it was too tight to go over a 19-inch head, so I ripped back about half of the ribbing and threaded the yarn back through the live loops (kind of like you do when you are about to close the top of a hat like a drawstring). Instead of pulling closed, I stretched the neck as wide as it would go, then wove in the very long end a long way down so it won't unravel.

It looks so cute and frilly!

Last on the hit parade is a little pink number I just finished for Mya. I tool some photos this afternoon before I finished it but Blogger only allows upload of so many per post. More when it's blocked and really finished. This one is a kind of salmony pink 100% silk. It was great to work with - it lies so flat! - and is more cottony than silky to the touch.

I'm not so happy with the button holes though (single crochet border puts them kind of deep into the sweater) and may just sew them up!

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Oh this time of year!

Well even in the midst of all this End Of Year stuff I did manage to finish Barbara's shrug, and I'm proud to say it turned out GREAT.

These are just some quick shots. I did the stripe to go around and it worked - lined up perfectly - yay!

I have to say that for all the HELL that was working with Trendsetter Segue, it did come out nice.

I went to UNWIND and took some shots of it on the mannequin but haven't got them out of the camera yet. These are kind of cool because you can see how the thing is done top to bottom, so that the colors match up.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Going on, ongoing....

I realized it's been a while since I posted anything.

Working on a few things right now - a shrug for Barbara (WHAT a nightmare - NEVER buy Trendsetter Segue unless you can sucker - oh I mean convince someone else to wind it for you), and percoloating one or two more things to pack up and send to Impending Baby Ackenhausen, making her first appearance here:

And no that's not a joke - apparently you can see a lot in an ultrasound - a CREEPY lot!

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Stay of Execution

I've had a call from the Governor - you'd think he'd be otherwise occupied - and have yet to destroy the Yoke Vest.

In fact I had the idea to do a single crochet (my new favorite thing) border on the collar, cleverly closing the "wrong" gap by decreasing, and will put the thing on later today for an evaluation.

I want to show it to knitters and non-knitters and see if it's as bad as I think. I'd hate to rip the thing out - it's very comfy. Overall it's still too tight (but may relax with blocking and wear) and damn it I just don't want to kill it.

I wish I had someone to give it to but it's so riddled with mistakes I wouldn't have the nerve -

Hey Jerk, Here's a crappy present for you ---

Nope, I haven't got the nerve.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

... Goeth Before a Fall

(Part two of a two-part post. Here's Part One.)

So I guess Jesus was a knitter, or at least he knew some.

I realize I should just rip this damned thing out and pretend I never got past the last post on it, but that would be dishonest.

So here's the deal.

I did finally finish my new nemesis, the Loop d Loop Yoke Vest, but it was an utter disaster and will need to be completely abandoned. I'm not doing it again.

I decided to ignore the pattern and do my increases on either side of what I'd marked as the center stitch, which didn't give exactly the same result as was pictured in the book but was fine.

But when it was nearly done and I needed to divide for the neck I was SOOOO careful to follow the directions, but I still managed to screw it up and now - yikes - the neck is off center!

And do you see the lovely row of "decorative" twisted stitches just below the bust? That's from when I ripped it out the first time but put every single stitch on backwards.

Yup, I got a lot to be proud of. I'm a real pro.

I see after the fact that even doubled this Blue Sky Cotton is too soft for this pattern anyway - the book shows the collar standing up but mine just rolls down. Not that I would have hated that look, but I can't deal with it now that it's completely off-center (80s revival or not).

So by the time you see these pictures, this top will be a thing of the past.

I do have to say I like the shaping, and am halfway tempted to just rip out the collar - no, in the name of all that's decent it must be destroyed.

Maybe I will start fresh with a different yarn. Maybe I will just know when to admit defeat instead.


(the first of a two-part post)

Hoo yeah I am all hopped up on how great I am - why I can knit with the best of them I surely can -

Just marvel at the finished shrug, done the night before we left for Carmel for a weekend of wedding festivities for two dear friends!

But wait - there's more!

Jenny's pal Cynthia is in town, and she shows us how to crochet, so I am now able to put a nice finish on Picovolo:

Snappy, eh? That's two rows of plain old single crochet, but I had been crocheting WAY too loose and Cynthia set me straight. I couldn't be happier with the top now and can't wait to do another.


Well maybe you should reserve judgment until you've read the next post....

Friday, November 04, 2005

Bursting with pride!

OK, here it is - Peggy's Ballet Top!

Remember this is Peggy's first non-scarf project, and with the exception of one afternoon of help from me she did this All Alone!!!

Here she is, looking GORGEOUS in it (even if she thinks it's too small) -

And from her summary email to me:

What went wrong:

Well, it's too small, even with the increases we engineered. I actually
had to knit 60 rows total to get 14" under the arms.

I screwed up the ssk decreases and consequently, the next set of
increases, which were to originate center front and center back, were
moved to one side.

There are some weird little "holes" -- might have been tension, might
have been me dropping something.

What went right:

I learned to increase, decrease, knit in the round, and use two strands!
And follow a pattern, duh.

I think I did a good job binding off and finishing. I felt like there
should have been one more stitch to bind off -- it looked a little weird
-- I did my best to bring the last round together with the finishing

And the Blue Sky cotton was so soft and easy to work with, as were the
Denise needles.

I have some lovely Bingo yarn for my next project, which will be a beret.

The videos at are fantastic.


Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Only a matter of time

... before I would join the throng of those who knit the Sherry's Easy Shrug from UNWIND.

This pattern is hardly even a pattern - if you can do a K2 P2 rib you are already done. It's all done in one piece and then seamed together. Right now I've cast on the extra stitches at either end and am doing the part that contains the sleeves (why it's wider now).


I'm finding that the rib is slowing me down, but still after just two nights this is what I have:

I'm using a lovely almost nubby gray ROYAL TWEED and am into my third 50g ball of it now. I hope to finish this shrug for our weekend away in Carmel, where it's chilly.

More to come, as usual.

For now here's what the cats think of it -

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Peggy Rules - AGAIN

(this post too lazy to include handy links to the subject matter. Feel free to scroll as needed.)

Yes I am still gloating over the successful completion of the Picovolo.

I am completely satisfied with it and in fact I wore it to a lovely birthday brunch today, hosted by Jenny, and Jeanette actually said she thought the top was Store Bought -- What higher compliment?

But I digress.

This post is about QUEEN PEGGY, masterful brave Super Knitter!

After visiting here not long ago and learning to knit at the feet of the master (Jenny), Peggy took to it like a pro and immediately went home and started making all kinds of super-sassy scarves, teaching herself the stiches with only a copy of Debbie Bliss's HOW TO KNIT.

Many delightful scarves later, she of course arrived at the age-old Question: How many scarves can a person make?

Okay, what then to move on to that's not too scary but that's more gratifying than a scarf?

After having such success with the Ballet Top (Loop d Loop), I knew Peggy could make one too. She was a bit intimidated about knitting in the round AND knitting with two strands because she'd never done either, but we went to UNWIND, got some yarn, and she was off and running in moments.

Double stranded? No Problem.

Joining and knitting in the round to make stockinette? Ditto.

Knit into the front and back to increase at the markers? Child's play for Super Peggy!

We started the Ballet Top when she was here, and look how far she is now:

I am bursting with pride!

More pics as she sends them to me - but let's all give Peggy a big hand for getting this far!

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

And Finally -


I did have to add a few stitches at intervals all the way around in order to get it to be the right size, and altough I know no one else will see, I do notice the increases. I also added a few rows in the boobs before starting the decreases and that worked well. It put my just into a 5th skein, though, which probably could be avoided next time.

I’m hoping blocking will make the added stitches a bit less noticeable, but even if it doesn’t I’m still very happy with the way this top turned out.

The tailoring at the sides looks pretty good – different from the tops that have increases and decreases on either side of the center stitch. I especially like the darts under the bust. It fits really well!

If I could pay attention and count I’m sure this would have come out perfect, but this is close enough for me. I’ll definitely try again with the same kind of yarn and the same needles.

Oh and note the YO, K 2 tog border at the bottom – Cute!

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