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Wednesday, November 11, 2009

broken rib stitch, sorta

Is anyone like me? I really hate doing k1, p1 rib. It's just that, for me, this comes out looser than I like. It's the purl after the knit st. Almost forms a freakin' ladder. Frustrating. And so k1, p1 broken rib is always really annoying but I love how this stitch looks. On paper. The mind began wishing, thinking, then yarn and needles are pulled out. What I came up with is a couple interesting stitch patterns. One I call Garter Rib Stitch and one is Deep Rib Stitch. These come easy when I get the inspiration to do 'em but I always forget to write the thoughts down. Ugg.

Garter Rib: an even multiple of 4 plus 1. I think. This is wrong. Will correct soon.

The swatch: Cast on 25 sts. K2, p2 to last st, k1. Repeat this row.
The thing is the multi should bring you to a p2 before that last st which should always be k1.
When you turn to begin each row the k2, p2 rib makes a pretty garter pattern with a single row of k stitches running the length of the fabric. A soft rib sort of thing. Some of those delish springy wools look nice in this stitch pattern. I think I've seen this as Loose Rib in some pattern books. After busting my butt thankin' it up.

Deep Rib: an even multi of 3 plus 1.

Swatch: I forgot what I did! BRB. Okay, I think this is it. Try casting on 31 sts.
K3, p3 to last st, k1. Turn and repeat.

This is done basically the same as above always having the last st a k1 after the purls. This pattern is hard to describe. 1 garter st, 2 knit, 1 garter, 2 purl sts. That is how it seems to come out. It pulls in and pulls out. A lot. Weird. Not even sure what a pattern like this could be used for. Maybe a scarf? A yucky thick-ish tank top? Like I said. Weird. Very. I'm pretty sure I Have Never Seen this 'un anywheres. If someone should stop in, give this strange bird a run and see what you come up with. And as I wrote, the brain mentioned a scarf in colorful stripes might be interesting in these sts. Shall try it.

Enjoy your day, folks.

Update: Monday, April 26. I made a mistake on the whether these stitches should be an odd or even multiple. I said odd but it is most definitely even. (I switched this in the post above) The odd multiples will not work. Also the Garter Rib is not correct. I need my notes to fix the error but they, the notes, are in the same room as the sleeping Husband and I do not wish to disturb. Promise to finish the update soon.
I really have a bad habit of winging right through things and scribbling illegible notes as I go. But, I actually got some patterns written up in these stitchs and they are for sale at my LYS which pleases me to no end. Just wish someone would buy! Though, I know times are hard. Her web site is and its a small shop across the state line into Kentucky. That is all we have local 'round these parts. The other local yarn shop closed down, how could she be so cruel? Yes, yes, you speak true, times are hard. May the times become like soft, fluffy fiber. Lux.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

what knitting does not do

Knitting does not make you skinny. That is the understatement of the day, week, month or year. Why do I say this? Well, for starters, a body does sit, a lot, when engrossed in the fiber arts. Is this not correct? Though I wouldn't say I am a couch potato. I couldn't say I am lazy when the housework grows ever more out of control as I bend over my latest stick and string technique fascination. I might venture to say I am an addict who can't seem to listen when I whisper to myself, "cut it out already. There are no clean clothes, no meals happening. What is wrong with you." It is a helpless feeling but what can ya do? Juggle. And so, we sit and focus and sit and let the time fly by. The Flow. But here is the contradiction. All this sitting can be not so good for the waist line. The pounds creep on and, at least for me, to tear away from knitting or crochet, to exercise? Years can go by before I ever get to that point, what with the feel of fiber slipping through my fingers? I tell a work buddy of mine why my fingers are black.
"It's from the yarn I've been working with."
He quips back, "you ever heard tell of gloves?"
"Dude, are you nuts?!" No. I like this black dye under my nails. It'll go.

I know I must get back on the wagon of work outs. Any kind, doesn't matter what. Just do it, already. I, the lady who was personal trainer to the Family, has gotten to the point, light years later, where I've actually developed a (minor) blood clot in my ankle. That is how my pop's side of the family has been taken out. Blood clots. "My" clot was like 3 months ago and I know, time to do so some tearing from the addiction. A serious wake up call. Stop the insanity. Already. Haven't I read of a few fiber superstars who died of a heart attack? Me own pap had a heart attack and, years later, a stroke. I know. I will.
Lucky for me there is another fellow worker at the bakery (I must be mad to work in a bakery) who lost 80 lbs and has kept it off for 9 years. I am so impressed that it has filled me with new hope. I can reclaim my waistline or at least snatch my health bakery, oh, I mean health back, before I keel over tomorrow. This dude is my new hero. I am inspired.

Now, to find the weights before the glow fades.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

knitting sooths the soul

and so does crochet. They calm the the mind. If a person's day is filled with harshness, any sort of disharmony, these repetitious motions take the mind somewhere else. Can't quite explain it but some how when I knit, even when in abject misery, the brain slows and must focus on the movements. If there is a question for which there seems no answer or just simply can't find any peace in all the chaos, if I sit and knit, an idea floats up. From somewhere. From nowhere. Spooky. I ain't asking nothing, not even trying, just bent over the needles and concentrating on the stitches. A startling answer to the mysteries of my life surfaces. And life is full of all sorts of strange, sneaking mysteries and that's the truth. To have to stand by and witness a person's pain, in which I cannot help, is a mean ass place to be and hard to understand or even believe when in that place. So, I will sit and knit, stitch by stitch, right hand of left, forwards or backwards. And slowly the sorrow melts away and some crazzzy idea makes itself known. To be honest I like to think that any problem can be solved by talking it out, but you know what? Sometimes not. A very hard thing to face up too. I can't always soothe the the pain in my loved ones and that is hard for me. I guess a quiet mind is the best place to find a needed truth and not the usual brainstorming I like using. That is from my perspective and not really from theirs.

Just some random thoughts.

Monday, October 19, 2009

SDS project 3 is finished...

...and goes into the mail tomorrow morning. One is in lovely cashmere, so soft and cosy and the other's in silk/cashmere with beads. Very lux. We were trying to keep the amount of yarn for these beauties within a certain parameter. It was intense. More when pattern goes live.

We've been having crazy weather. This week is supposed to hit the 70's. What's up with that? Not that I mind. I like warm weather but get a bit nervous when the weather goes all soft and warm this time of year what with global warming looming on the horizon. What if the whole world gets hit with a superstorm or gets swept away with a world wide flood? Could happen. Has anyone seen the movie "The Day After?" Mother Earth may decide to have a hissy fit and this would not bode well for us wee peeps. I keep my husband in stitches on this.

I wanted to share a neat link with those of you who like new ways of doing stuff. Knit stuff. This is a brand new way to bind off dreamed up by Jeny Staimen. Jeny's Surpisingly Stretchy BO. This was published on Knitty AND Cat Bordi demonstrates how it's done. Pretty cool, eh, but for real, this is awesome. Very stretchy with excellent shape retention. Used for k1, p1 or k2, p2. I have never seen any thing like this anywhere. She has also has dug up an old Norwegian(I think) cast on which uses, of all the crazy things, a bunch of slip knots! Now, you might think this has got to be tight. Slip knots are always tight, right?. Wrong. It's one of those things which defies logic. I love that. It's a bit tough to get down because it actually is two knots twisted together. Somehow. At the bottom of the page she has a link to another lady's video whose technique I actually like better for this slip knot cast on. More my style. Jeny's version the other

Thank You Jeny. Oh yes, Thank You the Other.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

little beasties

I have yet to figure out the proper method of picture upload. They always go straight to the top of the page instead of where I leave off at when posting. Why? But are not these children beauties? The two above are siblin's. She with the blue eyes is a cuz. I made that dress shown in the skinny pic below and I reeally hate sewing. Buuttt how could I resist them cute brown saucers.
I'm not sure how my darlin' daughter made the picture this way. Maybe with my sewing shears?
I have 5 sewing machines. You'd think a person with that many would like to sew but you would be wrong. Very. There's a serger, a denim machine, a regular Janome, a old black Singer, and an old White. The White don't work and I can't part with it. Can't part with any of 'em. They all have their uses, well, maybe not all, but you may begin to see the perversity emerging. I guess I should explain such excess. I was the oldest of 7 and did a lot of hand repair work on my brothers jeans and such. 4 brothers. A lot of stitchin', folks. To this day it sets my teeth on edge to sew anything but there is great comfort in having my machines there awaiting should I get the crazy notion, ha ha, to construct with teeny tiny stitches. And here is the perversity. I love teeny tiny knit and crochet stitches. Go figure.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

StitchDiva project 3 begins

The other day I went to the local thrift shop and found a big ol' sweater coat and these matching gloves, attached. Bought them. The coat has not left my frame since but the gloves needed a redo. Here I begin to remove the fingers to make for a pair of mittens. Much warmer, don't cha know. Now, of course, one mitt is bigger than the other. Always. I was a bit miffed to also discover that all the lovely colors were duplicate stitched. But got over that quickly. I like the colors enough as is.

StitchDivaStudios' "must haves" for the new season is on the drawing board. I've already begun working her amazing crazy stitches for practice. Didn't even get the dern yarn yet. I say, why wait. Lets get the show on the road! There shall be a knit and a crochet version and, which am I doing you may ask. I shall weave the magic of crochet. Always a trip when the Diva pulls out all the stops.

And now for the mundane and lowly. Not every creature that walks can be a mathemagician. I'm okay with that, at least, sometimes. Here are some pics...

riddin' myself of fun fur. the large black ponchawl has a crocheted off hem. a fun technique

knit on the Bond of America

handknit version of the Bond of America pattern

dimple stitch detail. prettiness which is hard to see here, but...

do not like.

some more prettiness. these are a few of the grandbeasties. ain't they cute. guess i need to fix the date on my camera. you think?
enjoy your evening.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

StitchDiva project 2 is live.

The Causal Glamor Capelet laid bare. Pattern and picture found here at:
The yarn I used was 100% cashmere. Thee softest fluff ever to run through my fingers. A bit hard to see is the extra hem added at the bottom which becomes ruffly when this dreamy dish is thrown across the shoulders. Beautiful. The pattern says intermediate but it may just past up this marker. But that will not stop any red-blooded knit lovin' fool. I did enjoy working this babe.

Monday, September 28, 2009

September's almost over, already.

Lots of things going on at the same time. The needs of others, the needs of self. A tough balancing act. My grandson seems to have a problem with interacting with other kids. He uses the first strike method. Any perceived danger, real or imagined, and he takes 'em down. He is only 3 but sheesh, take it easy fella'. Before this young man could walk he knew how to grapple and do a half Nelson. All the men in our family thought it was pretty funny getting him riled up. Nobody listened to Thee GrandMa. They are listening now. Hmmm :0/, wonder if he is too young for karate or something...?

Lots of things going on at the same time on the needles. Here is the back of the sweater mentioned in a previous post from the British mag Simply Knit. A pretty chevron stitch which quickly becomes memorized. The yarn is Charisma by Yarn Art and, as you can see, is red. Yeah, yeah, the picture is crappy. There are other projects but those pics are even crappier; a unfinished knit ripple blanket in black, dark green, lt. green and soft white; a half conceived stocking cap made with Patons Wool in turquoise, red and gold. Nice color combo. I used the fascinating jogless jog single row stripe. At first my frustration was extreme. Each needle holds a different color to make for the unending, jogless stripes. I kept ending short of the next color change. A quick google search found what I needed here at Check out the Stashbuster Spiral Socks under Free Online Classes. Superb directions. All her classes are great. I wanna make lotsa her ribbed socks in wool for my job. It gets damn cold at the factory midwinter. Shoot, its already kinda cold now. Also worked up a crochet entrelac cap in the same Patons Wool but really didn't like how those colors came out in that project. Shall share pictures someday. Wish I was at least as good with a camera as with a knitting needle or two. Not that I'm all that great but at least I love it. Not so with the camera. That is not a great love. A true hindrance.

A picture of the ripple stitch afghan.

Getting a shot was a pain in the butt. But this one came out the best. Wonders never cease.

Friday, September 18, 2009

batteries not included, darn it.

I need to get real good recharge batteries for my camera. The ones I got are junkers. They petter out faster than regular batteries. And when I do get 'um I need to then figure out how to work the camera. Uurggg. It's just that I have many, many FP's to show and tell and well, I'm stymied.

Sweaters; shawls; hats, crocheted, knitted, felted; mittens and scarfs. My latest favorite hat design, which I mustered up myself, is a crocheted entrelac bottom up beanie. They have a pattern at of a similar hat but theirs looks to be top down. Mine is bottom up and I'd love to share but first, my gosh, I need some pics. Don't ya think?

If someone blows by and you know of a good type battery and can tell a fool like me where in thee tarnation they can be bought, drop me a line. Like what's the best brand with the best price. Smart stuff like that.

Right now I'm working on a zip up sweater which I've been lusting after for quit some time. The back is almost finished and if the camera is up too snuff I'll put up a pic. Very pretty stitch pattern. It's in a British knitting mag, from Issue 22 Dec '06. Problem is I can't find the cardigan I'm working on to link to but its a great place to visit. The magazine is 4 bucks a month! but we americans get it, like, 8 months late. Not a problem.

Alrighty, have a good one.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

a knit techie queen

One favorite visiting spot:

This lady has tons of gems on how to do stuff different ways. Lots of great pictures and she's very detailed. She even dapples into knitting from a left handed person's perspective, more than anywhere else that I can find. Why do I care? Well, just because. Lefties wanna knit too and. Lefties wanna be able to be lefties. Right? This is something which bothers me about Thee Knitting Status Quo. A lot. Though I'm not necessarily left handed, many of my friends and family are. Therefore I feel kinda strongly about this. Maybe a tad bit on the passionate side. You get the idea. I try on handedness just to show myself and anyone else standing around, interested or not, it can be done.

A super helpful place to browse. And I do mean browse. Page after page she's got.

project 1 pictures

Now, ain't that garment somethin' else! I really enjoyed making this lovely thang. AND to tell truth it sure did not look like this on me. Hardy har. You can get a better look at Yes, I know I already said as such. But, oh well. =0D

This 'un is crochet and there is also a knit version. Check it out. The crochet is fun to make!

Further project pictures and info when patterns become live.

Monday, September 14, 2009

early headstart and back to work

The last few years have been a little on the rough side. That being said, things have settled down some and life has, strangely, gone back to the way it was. Five years ago one of my children needed a doctors care because of mental illness. She had a son and wasn't able to care for him. And so, as many a grandparent has needed to do, we stepped up to the plate. The turmoil has been intense but three very wonderful things has came form all of this.

#1: Of course. My grandson (he is number 5 of 9 grand kiddies)

#2: I have learned some important things about myself. I won't go deep but suffice it to say I now understand that my daughter is my teacher. I guess we are here to grow, to move beyond what we think is our safe place. I needed to become soft and strong. Not just soft or just strong. In a nutshell.

#3: Knitting.
People, let me tell you this. My knitting and crochet was, at times, my only friend. It has helped me through the these past few years. I would bend over my work, feeling very isolated, and practice whatever technique had grabbed my attention. Ah ha. There's that word again. Technique. A true comfort. Something which could be mastered, perfected. That which could be torn up with no remorse. Yarn. The intensity of my surroundings, no doubt, influenced how I worked with yarn. I'd say, for me, creativity was not an option but technique sure was! And so now the grandchild is in early headstart, the daughter is 20 years old and growing more sure every day and I am back to my old job. It has been a strange rite of passage. I sure hope I pass this test well.

Have a good day.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

knit poncho shawl

This is one of my own creations. Nothing special, simple enough to do with 3 stitches to begin it. It's a triangle increased at each side and double increased at the center. We've all heard tell of these gems. I don't really care for how wide a poncho can get so this is my version of a poncho. I whip up this shape and put a tie on it. Just the right size in my opine. Hence, poncho shawl. Hey, maybe a Ponchawl! Actually, I picked up an ugly sweater at Goodwill and frogged it for the yarn. A thick and thin soft orange and cream acrylic. This idea I discovered at Interweave Knits Magazine: Ashley Martineau. Ashely talks about being a Thrift Store Stash Queen. I love this concept. Added to this yarn I used Lite & Lofty in Cafe working two row stripes alternating the yarns. The colors turned out very subtle and while knitting it up, I thought of this young lady, pictured above. My good friend. She loves these colors and well, they just look dynamite on her. Now how's that for reuse renew refurb?

Good day, folks!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Glamour Capelet and the Irish Clan Aran

My second project with StitchDiva was a beautiful Capelet linked here:

The one in the link above is in worsted weight but my project was done in a different weight. It was this beautiful luscious yarn which felt like a cloud. If you take a look you will see the added ruffle at the hem which makes the capelet very special. Now that was a new technique for me but I loved the challenge! The lady never ceases to amaze.

And about the Murphy Clan Sweater. It was a pattern in "The Complete Book of NeedleCraft" by Jennifer Kirkwood. I found a website that explains the history of Irish names and how this is represented in the aran sweater. Very awesome. They list alot of names, their history, each name's clan pattern and how the stitches relate. I found this site after I knit my sweater up, which was kinda cool.

Gotta go. Lots of gran-kiddies running around making demands. Uggggh!
Have a great day.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Murphy Clan Sweater

Ah ha! A picture.That wasn't so hard.

Strangely the name of this sweater's pattern combination is Murphy which I found out after the fact. What's the odds of that?

Anyway, the central panel is the Honeycomb stitch. One of my favorites. You can just make out the Diamond/Irish Moss sections and the outer side panels are Irish Moss with purling in between all sections. Took me a week to get 'er done but I'd say a person could finish up in half that time. Much as I hate it, knitting must take a back seat at my house. But my grandson begins early headstart tomorrow and life may get a bit on the quiet side. Yes. I promise to do more housework. And knitting! =0D

I'm not sure which old book this pattern was in but I promise to do my research and find it. In case someone would like to give it a try. I used 2 8oz skeins of Lion Brands Fisherman's Wool and size 8 needles. Didn't use all of the second skein. Because the gauge was alittle on the small side I actually needed to increase, um, maybe 4 or 5 sts each side above the ribbing of the front to get the proper measures. Ya can't even tell. I did do a swatch but it lied.

As you 's can see my nephew is handsome. Not married ladies. Actually he's not even gonna like that I put his pic online but maybe he'll never find out!

Alrighty, gonna call it a day.

Update: For those interested thought I'd get the link to the Clan Aran Sweater's web site.

They actually knit up these beauties for the buyer in the chosen name/s. They cost $230 bucks. Not to bad. I think well worth the price for those who don't knit.

And for those of us who do knit the only Clan name pattern I know of that is in the land of the avalible is Murphy.

Enjoy your day!

Stunt Stitching

And now for a bit of gushing which I'm sorry for but I can't help it can you blame me? I have recently been included as a Stunt Stitcher for the company . My very first project was an awesome cardi shawl which was so amazing the way it comes together. You should go check it out along with the rest of Jennifer Hansen's other designs. But to see the Endless CardiShawl I stitched up for her just click on the red link of same name at the bottom right of the page. Mine was the light brown and Chie's was that rusty colored one. Very Pretty Chie! Her blog? Thanks for lettin' me join the fun, Jennifer!

I wanted to put up a picture of a aran sweater I made for my nephew. But first I gotta figure out how to do that. Ha! I said I was a newbie, didn't I? Oh yeah, well, maybe I didn't say it, but now that it's out there, hell, there it be. I'll post this for now and get back to the never ending blogger help for the above said instructions for pic download. Blogger help, a dreaded task.

Have a good one!

Friday, August 28, 2009

using right or left I knit straight from the hip...

...well, I can't really knit from my left hip and you're probably wondering, what the heck...? Okay, let me explain. For speedy knitting, though I'm not all that fast, I place my knitting needle either in my waist band or just jammed on my hip. It might be the Scottish in me. They had awesome knitting speed back in the day. . The Scottishness would have been my great great grand dad. But I never met the man and don't know why I knit that way. I'm thinking maybe it's the genes.

I will state here and now that I cannot abide knitting only one way. I will, at a moments notice. knit with my left or right hand, throwin' or pickin', working towards the left or right, when the mood suits me. It's the same with crochet. I'm a righty by nature but like to practice with my south paw just for spite. Knitting police beware.

I love technique. A lot. Soon as I hear tell of some new fangled way of doing something I just gotta try it. Only problem with that? I never get a project done. Always dropping the newest love and then moving on. And I'll come clean. I'm not the most creative person you'll ever meet. There are those out there that amaze. Really , the word is shock. Shock and Awe, to coin a phrase. I cannot, for the life of me, believe how these creative types pull if off. I am currently working hard at my creative muse. Not my strong point.

I'd love to hear tell of yall's travels through the knit and crochet world of techiness. Those of you who are fiber artists you's are welcome to drop by and give up some hints on how you do it.

Soon as I figure out the rules and regulations of posting pictures I'll share with y'all.

Have a great day, folks.