Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Holiday Make-A-Thon: Progress Report

As you saw in the previous post about the folded fabric, I am making great progress on those gifts. Currently I some sewn together almost ready to mail to far away family and friends. The last batch are for local giving and will be done closer to the time.

The knits that had to go to Oregon were mailed right after Thanksgiving and should be there in plenty of time for the annual stitching party. The furthest package of knitteds is almost ready to ship - can't say exactly what is in it but I will say the tree ornament (korknisse's) match for each recipient. How fun is that?!

This year I had to sit down and devise my crafting list to be done in the order that would allow me to mail them in a timely fashion. So any local gifts are being done at the end and I hope that my elf-ing energy holds up. I imagine that I will still be knitting vigorously on Christmas Eve while helping mom wrap the last of the gifts. At least that is how it worked out last year.

Enjoy this picture of the family of faraway feet that have taken up residence in my laundry closet. (That is to keep Pedro from chewing on them - he LOVES Lambs Pride wool)  Happy 25 days til Christmas~!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Itty Bitty Baby Hat

This is my next "house" project on the needles. It is a hat for my co-worker's sister's first baby. She had found the picture in the middle at the Geddes photo site and fell in love with the hat idea. I found a close match in the Itty Bitty Hat book and will be adding the white glittered fuzzy yarn to the ears, shown here.

It should be a fun knit and I can't wait to see the baby pictures.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Folded Fabric FOs

The folded fabric projects are going well. I have several gift items ready for sewing together. I used the faraway gifts as the demonstration models at the shop during the big after turkey day sale.

The local gifts are going to be demonstration models for my classes in Buena Vista next weekend. It is great to be getting my projects near completion while I show others how to have this much fun with fabric. 

I hope everyone is having fun with their gifting this season~!

Friday, November 26, 2010

Prepping the Sock Club for 2011

This idea came from one of the Yarn Harlot's posts. I liked it because I have watched several sock-of-the-month groups get more and more expensive and I have never felt I could afford to join. However I love to knit socks and am having fun learning all the varieties of techniques you can use to knit socks, so I have collected a lot of sock yarn (remember, at last count it was enough for 60 pairs of socks).

So I took her idea and have set up my own sock club for 2011. Currently the pile of yarn looks like this and the patterns look like this and the tub they are all going in looks like this.

I have signed up for two classes, one in December to do two toe-up socks at a time on one circular needle and the other in January to do two socks at a time on one circular cuff down. Both of these techniques are being taught from the books by Melissa Morgan-Oakes.

My guess is that my first pair of socks for the new year from the club will be knit using the technique I learn in December with a pattern from that corresponding book. I think my club idea will get me through learning these new techniques while using up some of the stash I have packaged for the occasion.

And at the end of the year of knitting socks I hope to knit a pair of Blender Socks with the leftovers. My blog goal for this club is to post the first of the month with the selection, mid-month with progress notes and end of month with the FO. Stop back to see the club's progress~!

P.S. As you can see, even Pedro is excited about the sock club.

Thursday, November 25, 2010


I am thankful for:
  • My wonderful pussycat who fills my heart and my lap.
  • That I live in a quiet neighborhood, have good friends and family and my bills are paid.
  • I have the opportunity to share my passion for knitting.
  • My blog readers and other bloggers that inspire me.
I hope that everyone has taken a few minutes out of their day to remember what they are thankful for and the opportunity to thank those we love the most~!

Happy Turkey Day to All!

Imagine how much harder our meals would be on this day if the Pilgrims had chosen wild boar for their feast? Though, I guess we would have lots of wild boar farmers in the Midwest instead of turkey farmers.

I like this holiday because I love leftover turkey. However, in a household of one, it is difficult to actually get a bird small enough to manage that. I keep hoping they will come out with a minature turkey instead of just a breast  because I like dark meat too.

Here's to a wonderful day full of all your favorite things, people and memories. Let us be thankful for all the blessings we have and enjoy~!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

It's the Holiday Make-athon

This year it is about a variety of crafting skills, not just knitting. I am liking the combination and hope to have it all made in time. My biggest nemesis is the mailing deadlines. I hope everyone is having a happy pre-holiday season~!

Loopy is happy to have a soft, warm place to rest while he supervises the progress. Pedro is too busy watching out the window and basking in the twinkly light glow to be much help.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Everyone Needs Their Own Minions or Another Leftover Sock Yarn Project

I have loved the word minion for as long as I can remember so I was very excited when Despicable Me came out complete with minions.

So, I went looking for a knitted minion so I can make some of my very own. Lo and behold, guess where I found evidence of knitted minions, yes, you guessed - Ravelry. It led me to Joey's House by Heather Sebastian. I also found patterns for minions that look like the ones from Despicable Me, however liked these little guys better.

Now I am looking for some leftover sock yarn to knit up some minions of my own. I think they will be handy for yarn bombing and super quick giggle gifts for friends and family who have everything.

Beware: there could be a minion in your future. Bwahahaha~!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Monday Morning Muddle

I had a busy and productive weekend complete with adding more lights to my window. This year I am combatting the idea that I am going and coming from work in the dark with twinkly lights in my window at home. I have them on a timer so they come on before I get home in the evening and can see them walking up the walk. Notice that Pedro knows to watch for momma after the lights come on.

1. First off I helped mom shop for a variety of items that will either be needed for Thanksgiving Day dinner or for comic relief Christmas gifts. One can be seen next to Pedro in the picture: a dancing, singing Christmas tree hat doubling as my Christmas tree this holiday season.

2. Then I worked all weekend on knitting gifts for faraway family and prepping for fold fabric projects also destined to be gifts this holiday season.

3. I taught twined knitting to eager students who really liked that it is a simpler technique than it sounds.

4. Cleaning house and doing laundry before the holiday rounded out my weekend.

Now I feel ready to enjoy a few days off which will be filled with family, friends, food, fun and frantic work on completing the gifts that have to be mailed the first of December aka next week aka AHHHHHH!

I hope everyone had a great weekend~!

Friday, November 19, 2010

KnitPicks Lovers Unite! Must Enter by Nov 23rd

Go to KnitPicks.com to enter to win your wishlist before November 23rd by following the instructions above. They have great stuff and their shipping is the fastest on the planet. I am a huge fan and loyal shopper. 

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Congrats to Ravelry

A big congratulations to Ravelry for the addition of their 1 millionth member on November 13th. And I know the number will just keep going up. (Don't you love their new seal? I borrowed it to honor them.)

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

The Churchmouse Ruffle

I found this pattern at Stash in Castle Rock in October. I would not have found it unless the shop had not believed in "samples sell patterns" method of inspiration.

I am to the last five rows on this one that I am making for the shop to show off other uses for sockweight yarn.

I should have it done this weekend and be able to put it up for display on Thanksgiving weekend.

It is a fun knit and actually very easy. I hope everyone is finding inspiration for their passions~!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Rocky Mountain Arsenal Tour

This weekend the folks and I headed out to celebrate mom's birthday. We went north to Denver with a stop at Stash in Castle Rock so she could see this yarn shop. It was trying to snow while we visited, however moved south without creating any accumulation that would impede our plans.

We had a great dinner at the Outback Steakhouse and stayed at the La Quinta at the airport. Nice room, great breakfast and close to the entrance to the Rocky Mountain Arsenal.

In the morning we headed over to the visitor's center to take the tour with my friend, CatWithCats, as the tour guide. She has been doing this for ten years as a volunteer and does a great job of mixing the history of the arsenal with critter sightings and ID for the guests.

We saw bufffalo, lots of deer - both mulies and whitetail, hawks and a pair of bald eagles, coyotes and a plethora of prairie dogs. It was a beautiful day and a great way to see the clean up job they have done at this location. It was hard to imagine the industry that went on here during WWII since the majority of buildings have been razed and covered in a huge landfill that the prairie, with help from the Wildlife Service, is reclaiming.

It is well worth the time to go see this new additon to the wildlife preserves in the state. I hope everyone will add this to their list of things to see and do in Colorado~!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Mini Warmers

I have been knitting miniwarmers for my relatives in Oregon. They will be wearing them for their annual stitching party coming up in December. My cousin owns a cross stitch store and the rest of the family stitches. These warmers are made out of Knit Picks Felici sport and fingering weight. Everyone picked from the available colors to create the ones that match their personalities.

This pattern is easy and fun to knit. I did them on two circs until I got to the thumb which had to be done on double points.

I hope everyone likes them.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Other Things To So With Sock Yarn

I own a lot of sock yarn and love knitting socks, however you can only wear so many socks, so I have started looking at sock yarn with the idea that other things can be made from it. I took a class with Wendy Johnson of Wendy Knits at the Loopy Ewe Spring Fling and she showed us some fun accessory ideas from sock weight yarn. I made earrings, hair ties, and started a mitered square lapghan that uses up the leftovers.

Now a book has come out that focuses on one skein projects made out of sock yarn. I ordered mine before it was even published, remembering I have skeins set aside for just these projects. This one is the best layout of the One Skein books because the pictures of the projects are on the same pages as the patterns. That is really helpful when you are marking the book with project post-its. I see several that I will be knitting in the future.

Another great source for pattern ideas is Ravelry and I have collected some wonderful sockweight shawlette patterns that most can be made from one skein.

Now that I have all these ideas I am off to raid my sock yarn bucket. See you soon~!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Honored by Fresh Ink

On November 9th, I was honored by Fresh Ink, the online community news group sponsored by The Gazette, for my story about the closing of Buckskin Joe's. The picture of my acceptance of the mention is here.

The event was held at the Stargazer Theater which has been in the neighborhood for many years beginning life as a movie theater and has been many things since.

I met some lovely ladies from Pueblo who were also honored at the event for their coverage of the equestrian program at the Fountain Valley High School. It was a fun evening.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Monday Morning Muddle

The weather continues with the Indian Summer feel, with the cold weather patiently waiting on stage left. It is great for those that do not want to turn on their heat any earlier than necessary.

For my weekend, it was full of a myriad of things, like:

1. Played string games with Pedro. He has started asking for them in the morning during my coffee time and in the evening after his supper.

2. Setting the clocks back to get ready for the darker time of the year, not my favorite time change.

3. Starting on holiday gift knits which I really can't talk about here for a while. I will give a complete rundown in early December when I figure folks are too busy to look at my blog.

4. Planning soup recipes for the coming cold weather, this is my favorite food.

5. And I went fabric shopping with mom, we are trying to pick out some things for folded fabric gifts.

All in all, it was a great weekend. I hope everyone had a good one as well~!

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Casting Off - The End of a Project or a Fashion Statement

What would be wrong with not knowing how to bind off? In the case of a scarf, it would be cool to use the needle you have knit it with as a scarf pin to secure it.

This was tested this weekend while I was at the shop. It was fun to test the idea, and then I showed them how to bind off. I believe the more ideas, the better your creativity. 

Friday, November 5, 2010

Knitting 24/7 - Thoughts on the Book

I got a copy of this book from the library to see if it was worth buying a copy. I found at least six patterns in it that I want to knit next year, so I have it on my KnitPicks wishlist so I will remember to purchase it later.

It has a great pattern for some handwarmers that include a really interesting stitch that incorporates five stitches that on first glance looks crocheted vs. knitted. And there is a wonderful slouch hat pattern out of sockweight yarn, as well as a cabled hat with cousinly matching gloves. The photography is very well done and the instructions are easy to follow.

I recommend at least looking through when you find yourself at a book rack.

I hope everyone is finding new ways to pursue their passion~!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Mystery Sock KAL - Lesson Learned

I have finished my Mystery Sock KAL with Through the Loops group on Ravelry. I really enjoyed this pattern and the yarn I used, Knitpicks Risata. And I learned some valuable lessons about mystery knitalongs. First, always have more yarn that they call for, in the picture above I have shown exactly how much I had leftover. Risata has 196 yards per skein, the knitalong called for 400 yards total, and I have never knit a pair of socks that I did not have leftover yarn at the end, so I thought that 8 yards short was not big deal - WRONG.

And I experienced that feeling that if you knit faster you can extend the length of the yarn and make it to the end, no, that does not work.

I think both socks ended up about 4 rows short of the pattern described length. They look great on and no one will ever know, except for you good people who are reading this. I hope everyone has new things that they are learning with every attempt at success~!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Get Out and VOTE!

The sooner this is over with, the sooner the ads will go away and folks will stop calling. Thank goodness!