Wednesday, October 31, 2007

I've got mail - again!

I shouldn't even be sitting here, on the computer, but I had to show you, what the mailman brought yesterday. I've got Endpaper mittens, beautiful ones, and I didn't even have to knit them myself! Angelika made them for me!!! She included this little, but beautiful crochet bookmark, and my eyes fell almost out of their sockets, as I saw the little sock! Isn't it the cutest? I thank you very much, dear Angelika! (and by the way, you would have gotten the books anyway!) ;o)
To my surprise they fit, and have been already worn. They are my favorite color, very warm, and I'm so glad I have them. I don't think I'll ever knit them myself.
I also wanted to say thanks, to your response to my Kyla mittens. I hope you'll not have too much trouble with the bobbles! That's really the hardest thing on these mitts, after you've managed that, it will go quick and easy! ;o)
I'm a little on a deadline with Christmas knitting. The pile on the photo below needs to be assembles. Can't show you pictures before Christmas, that is, her on my blog. You'll be able to see photos if you are on ravelry, but right now, it's still this pile of knit pieces. Knitting it was easy, now comes the hard part. Sigh.
Well, off I go, so much to do, so little time ....... and it's Halloween tonight!
Happy Halloween everybody!

Saturday, October 27, 2007

I call them "KYLA"!

edited October 30th: of course there's a mistake in the pattern. Unfortunately my test knitter never got back to me, but Marianne let me know. So here goes:
in the cuff part: row 16-18: Knit should read instead
row 16-18: P1, K5 * P3, K5 repeat from * to last 2 sts, P2.
The link on the side bar will have the new corrected copy as of October 30.

Also some have trouble with the bobble row. There should be 11 bobbles, each bobble uses up 2 sts NOT 3 sts. To make a bobble you (P1, YO, P1, YO) in 1 sts, P1 next stitch, turn, now you've got 5 sts to work with.

I'm so excited, I can't wait any longer. I had so much fun knitting these fingerless mittens, and wanted to share this fun with you. I'm still waiting to hear from my test knitter, but if she finds a mistake in my pattern I'll let you know.

The three pairs are already spoken for. I have to take a break, knitting some other Christmas gifts, but I'm sure going to knit some more.

The variegated pair, was my first pair, which is not without mistakes, but it was the process. By the last pair, I didn't need to look at the pattern anymore. They knit up fast, and take not even the whole skein. I had 8-10g leftover yarn with all three of them. So, if you have a single skein Koigu kicking around in your knitting basket, you might want to give them a try. ;o)

Did I mention it's free? Here's the link to the download. I wish you lots of fun! And of course, send me some pictures for my Readers Gallery! ;o)

Friday, October 26, 2007


I'm NOT good with working as a group. I like my own pace, and hate waiting for the contributions of others. In this case, I was waiting for pictures of Hannah with the vest "Karolyn", I made for her. Some - time - ago.
As you can see in the first picture, black things are hard to photograph, and quite boring on their own.
I wanted to knit something for Hannah, but it is always difficult because I wanted to surprise her, and I wanted her to like it. We have different tastes.
I've got this Berroco booklet Keltic # 249, and there I saw # 7 karolyn. It was made with Keltic yarn, but I could see it in my mind all black. So I substituted the yarn with Patons SWS in black (believe me, I would have loved to use something else, but I could not find the right weight for this project, in black, in either of the two LYS's I went). This yarn sheds like a dog in Springtime!
Besides substituting the yarn, I knit the rib part in the round, so it could be smooth, and without a thick seam on both sides. I dislike knitting with the color black, but this project went fast, because it had no sleeves, and it was knit with 5.5mm needles. It looked soooooo small, but it seems to fit Hannah. I like it a lot better on her, than on the model in the booklet. Thanks, for the pictures, sweetie! ;o)

Monday, October 22, 2007

Happy Birthday, Biko!

Biko turned six years today. After her escape escapade a few days ago, I was a little mad at her, but you can't stay mad at her for long, and it's always the humans fault, when pets don't behave anyway. ;o) We are working on it, though. More obedience training. The last couple of days, she was sweet as sugar and listened like she should, and even cuddled with me on the sofa (once she was out of the "doghouse". She had her head on my lap and snored like a lumberjack. So, all is well again, and we all enjoy her company. Wouldn't miss it for the world! Hope to have you in our family for a very long time to come, Baby!

Even as a three month old puppy, she was looking for an escape route.

edited: We had 26 C today!!! It's October for goodness sake! Biko presenting her new collar.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

I know it's Rhinebeck weekend ....

and I'm probably the only one who's not there. Oh well. I can amuse myself. The last few days are best forgotten, actually it all began with the blast in my face, from there it went downhill. Do you have times like that, where everything goes wrong? One of those days, but actually several of them?

After the furnace service guy came (late) and went, there was the Biko incident. She slipped out of her collar and took off. One last backward glance at me, and off she went for her trip down the road. At the first moment I thought my heart stopped. But we were in luck, because at that particular moment, there were no cars, no people, no distractions of any kind. I only got her, because she found a spot, where the scent was so intense, that she didn't notice me sneaking up on her. I knew she was a clever girl and all, but I never thought that she would ignore me like that. She listens at home, in the house and in the garden, she comes when called and so on. Well, after an hour, I was still shaking. Imagine what could have been! Needless to say, she was in the doghouse for a while.

Last night my husband came home from his trip to Europe. His luggage was in the hall, and I promptly fell over his f***** carry-on suitcase. I could see myself falling in slow motion, thinking how best to fall and land, with minimum damage to myself. Silly, really. I landed on my hands, and my right knee, both wrists hurt, and my knee as well, but the worst are my left hand and arm, they hurt real bad. At first I thought I can't knit, but I can. Typing is much harder, and still I'm doing it. While I was on the floor, Sam came, walked around me and had himself a fine drink of water, after that he slobbered all over me. Thanks!

I did not make any progress on my spinning, or my holiday knitting. In fact, I had an idea for something else, and had to start on it, right away. I'm having fun, and I'll share the outcome with you. This is a picture just to tease you. ;o) I go now, lick my wounds, and knit some more. Wish you all a wonderful weekend, without accidents!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007


Before anything else, and before I forget, I wanted to thank you all for your commends on my Morning Surf Scarf! It was overwhelming! Thank you so much! ;o)

This is Spunky Eclectic fiber of July "Celebration". I didn't like the colores, even with the orange in it. The fiber is Shetland, which was very nice to spin with. This was a little careless spun, because of the color, and produced ~ 190yds of worsted weight yarn, with thick and thin places. Not my best.
Fascinating though is, that you'll never know how the knitted fabric will turn out, and I must say, I'm somewhat reconciled with this "Celebration". I wanted to make full grown mittens, but didn't know if there would be enough for a pair, so I played it save and made some fingerless mitts.

They turned out a little big, and I DID a swatch, measured my hand to make them fit perfectly, but I guess the uneven spinning is to blame. So I thought I'll felt them by hand, just a little. They didn't shrink enough though.

They'll do fine though. I like the cuff longer, 2inches is never enough, I made 3 inches. Would have done more, but wasn't sure of the yardage. Anyway, they are done, the yarn is out of the way, and you can never have enough mittens around here.

This little tea pot is my husbands. He's got it for his birthday ( from me), I think it's totally cute.

I've been working on a lot of things. Some things I can't show you, since they are barely begone, and Christmas gifts to boot. Sorry.
For another finished project, which was a gift as well, I don't have pictures yet, the recipient hasn't got it yet, hopefully she'll get it this week and is quick with sending pictures (if it fits at all).
And, I've been spinning up a storm. I haven't touched my knitting needles in two days, because of spinning. I've started this wool/mohair blend some time ago, can't even remember when I finished the first bobbin. Now it was bugging me, and collecting dust on my coffee table, enough, so that I forced myself to get going on the second bobbin, which is now done as well, since last night. I didn't think I would make it, had to take several breaks, because my fingers cramped up, and my right knee hurt like hell, but in the end I did it! Now to do it all over again, a third time - oh goodie! It's going to be a 3-ply sock yarn. It's about 250g, so I guess I'll be able to make 3 pair of socks, if I want to. We'll see how it turns out.
As an aside, I'm a little dizzy, and I'm starting to get a light headache. I tell you, don't operate spraying cans, right after you get up in the morning!!! Huh? you ask yourselves.
O.K. I'd like to be able to afford a maid, that said, I had a lot of cleaning to do this week. There will be a service man coming to look at the furnace. Our house is housing two large dogs, and it's not easy to keep those hairs under control, and there IS a certain smell. Usually I don't care, but for some reason, I didn't want the poor guy to be overwhelmed with doggy smell, so I purchased an air freshener out of a spray can. I don't use that normally, maybe that's another reason for getting a full blast of it directly in my face, the other was being so tired. Now I smell real fresh too! ;o) Hope he'll be here soon, otherwise I'll have to do another round, and that scares me. ;o) On the other hand I'm fully awake now, so nothing bad can happen to me, and the bad, bad spray can has no power whatsoever. Enough said.

The next subject is a wonderful one. On October 11th, I received a package. Sybille remembered my birthday, that is, she knows that it in November, but last year it came too late, so she calculated and sent it earlier. Only this year, it was here after 5 days!!! (not weeks like last year). So I've got an awesome early B-day present!
Sybille was very generous, and seems to know me well. I've got wonderful Sock books, lovely sock yarn, my favorite chocolate (Milka), gummi bears, and even some treats for Sam and Biko, and a lovely card as well. Thanks again Sybille!

To round it all up, here's a picture of Sam soaking up some sunshine on the balcony. Right now, both of them are doing well, no major boo boo's, skin infection cleared up nicely, everything is alright. Hope I didn't chinx it.
So my friends, I better get going, so that there will be something to show soon. I'll do my best. Bye for now! ;o)

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Morning Surf Scarf!

I didn't mean to let you wait for my next blog post, but there was so much to do, the weather went from sizzling hot, to pretty cold. What that means is, that blocked items are slow to dry now, since I haven't turned on the heating yet.
I've been knitting, some of it I can't show you yet, but this scarf saw some sunshine today and I could take it off, of the blocking wires.
This project was a LOVE project from the moment I ripped open the envelope, and found this breathtaking roving. I started spinning the same day. It's merino/tencel blend, but only 2oz. It was a challenge to find the perfect pattern for this yarn, and I wanted to knit this right away.
So, here it is:
pattern: free Morning Surf Scarf by Jackie Erickson-Schweitzer
yarn: my own handspun, 2 oz merino/tencel, 2-ply lace weight ( 25 WPI), ~ 216yds
needles: 3.25mm
size after blocking: 6.5" x 50"
The roving was Spunky Eclectic Fiber of the month Club, "Aspen". I love it!

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Fun Little Knits!

I think today, was the last bath our dogs are getting this year. The pool steps are repaired, and I've been letting the hose run for two days now, to fill up the pool just to the level for pool closing. Biko jumped in way before the level she was used to, and did miss the tennis balls every time. Normally she jumps in and lands with her mouth closing around the ball. It's another hot and humid day today, but I don't think this will last much longer. I'm quite fed up with this unseasonal weather. Even the A/C is running again. Enough is enough! It was fun though to get Sam wet to the level where we could put on some shampoo and rub it in deep. In the process we all got quite wet, especially the hose down was not so fun, with the cold water, but hey, what has to be done, has to be done. His skin infection cleared up nicely. He's healing well, poor guy. It's always him, getting the short end of the stick. After being inside for a couple of days, with only walks for excercise, because of the pool guys and lawn guys out back, they were running until they dropped.
Enough with the dogs, you say? Want to see some knitting? Here you go ....

yarn: Noro Kureyon # 150, 1 3/4 balls

needle: 5mm DP

mods: no modifications, it turned out BIG, but will be just right for cold, windy days.

Two words describing this hat - LOVE IT!
Newfoundland mitts - pattern: Creative Whimsy
yarn: Patons Classic Wool Merino, color peacock, Noro Kureyon color # 150
needle: 3.25mm DP
I changed the needle size - this is another fun knit!

pattern: Amy King, Fake Isle Hat
yarn: Patons Classic Woll Merino in black, Noro Kuryeyon color # 126
needle: 4mm 16" circs and DP
size: large - it really is large, just right for the recipients hat ;o)
It's a nice hat and I liked knitting it a lot!
Second pair of Newfoundland mittens. I'm using Noro Kureyon left overs from my mitered squares blanket. I really like this mitten pattern, but after the 4th was done, I was glad it was over. They are thick and warm, and I made long cuffs. And best of all, I've already got me some finished Christmas gifts! Yeah!

Besides fooling around with the dogs, I've spent a lot of time in the kitchen the last couple of days. It's my sons Birthday today (22), and my husbands is tomorrow. I've been backing a "Punchtorte" as requested by my son (who usually likes his chocolate cake very much). The Torte tastes fine, but looks aweful. I couldn't get the glaze right. It's supposed to be a "Fondant glaze" where you boil water and sugar until when dropped from a spoon will make fine strings or something. After that drop some lemon juice on it, and wait for a fine skin to appear (or something), after that stir with a wooden spoon until it gets thick and turns white. Anyway, I've never done this before, and it did not work. It got all syrupy thickish, but never hard enough. I still put it on the Torte, but it ran off in a hurry, and even now, after a day in the fridge, it's still dripping down the plate (and it's pink)! ;o) As I said, it tastes good, it's sweet, that after a slice you'll be in a sugar coma. My son said, it's O.K., but he thinks change is bad, he should have stuck with his chocolate cake. Would have been easier for me too! ;o)
The other cake is a poppy seed Gugelhupf, which I made just in case the other one was not eatable. Now we have two. It's not necessary to put pictures of my failures up here, so use your imagination, if you can.
And of course, I always cook what the birthday kid wants for dinner. It's Schnitzel today. I'm ready to fall down on the couch and do something, other then cook, but first I've got to clean up the mess. Tomorrow smile and repeat! ;o)
Oh, before I forget, happy birthday David, happy birthday Karl! ;o)

Thursday, October 04, 2007

You've got mail!

I was not prepared for this month Spunky Eclectic Fiber Club installment! Isn't it gorgeous?! It's buttery soft and oh so shiny, and it is called "Aspen". It's 2oz merino/tencel blend, which spins up so fast and easy, I'm totally in love with it. That's a blend I'm sure I'll buy more of in the future. I think I already have some in my fiber stash, but none with such beautiful colores. I can't wait to get it all spun up, which will not take long since it's not much. I'll 2-ply it, and hopefully get to knit with it soon after.
Finding this in the mail was not a surprise, since I've been waiting for it, but it still "wowed" me, when I opened it. But a big smile on my face!
The other thing, which was a big surprise was this advance copy of Ethnic Knitting Discovery by Donna Druchunas. Boy did my eyes pop out, when I picked up the package at the post office. I could not, for the life of me, guess why I did get a package from the States. For once I hadn't ordered anything, and nothing was late to arrive.

Well, some time ago, I've already forgotten about it, Deborah Robson was writing about this book on her blog. She asked to leave name and address, if we were interested in an advance copy of this book, that is, if she had some left over. If you want to read her blog you've got to have some time, because her posts are long, but very intersting! ;o)

Since I already own a book by Donna Druchunas (Artic Lace), which i thought was very interesting to read, with the plus of gorgeous lace patterns included, I thought I'd give it a shot, and left my information.

You can read more about what Donna has to say about her new book here: Go Knit In Your Hat blog.

I'm not quite through reading it, but it came in my life at the best possible moment. I'm very interested in Fair Isle knitting, or any other color knitting at the moment. The next post will show you what I've knit so far, but this book answers so many questions for me. I even found headband patterns in it, which I was looking for all over the Internet, and in every single knitting book I own, with not much success. I thought I'll start with headbands, they might be easier, which I now doubt. Still the same tanglement, but they will not take that long, hence sanity will be restored more quickly.

There are different kinds of patterns in this book, 4 small skill-building projects, and 8 master sweater plans (as it says so on the back of the book). It reminds me of Cat Bordhi's new sock book, with the master numbers, where you need to plug in your measurements and off you go, knit yourself a wonderful fitting sweater.

I'm so excited about this book, but don't expect a big fat sweater in all-over color pattern just as yet. I'm still struggling to keep sane with the small stuff. Maybe one day. ;o)

And thanks again, Deborah!

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Blog Blahs over?

I believe "blog blahs" are contagious, and I've contracted it from Sue who suffered from it, but recovered quickly, and so did I. There's just too much to show.
I LOVE Fall, and all it's colores. This year though it's a lot warmer than usual, but still the fall colores are already there. Now you'll find me more outside and enjoying it too.

I've been knitting of course, after the Braided shawl was done, I was so very ready to knit little things, things I've been wanting to knit for a long time. Like this very spicy Beethoven Dickey.
I made it with the yarn I dyed with turmeric. The Dickey pattern is from Elizabeth Zimmermann. It's very easy to knit and I like this version with the stretchy garter stitch neck, because I can't stand close things around my throat, but this expands easily.
My son asked, if I wanted to knit a Pullover and had run out of yarn? I think it's a wonderful idea.

Sam seems to like the turmeric taste. One can smell it very faintly (for human noses), but he started to like the bip right away.
I love the color of this big neck warmer. The yarn is Knit Picks Bare, worsted weight, and I needed just a little over one skein. It's a pity really, because now I haven't got enough for the mittens I wanted to knit with the second skein. I wanted it pure with no other colores mixed, but have to rethink this now.
This is an adult sized Dickey. I've tried to find a better way to do the decreases, and even frogged several attempts, but nothing looked better than E.Z.'s method. I think she wrote down the instructions for the best result already.

On the spinning front, there's this 190yds skein. I didn't care for the colores very much, so I tried to mix them up real good and spin a little thicker than normal. It turned out 2-ply "thick'n thin" yarn, because it's not my best spinning ever. The break I took was too long, and even though you'll never forget how it goes, you need practice to produce even yarn.

Wound into a ball does nothing for this yarn. I'm curious how it will look knit up.
It's 4oz of Shetland wool, which I LOVED to spin. It's so easy, and soft to spin and I will definitely buy more of this fiber in the future. That's so fun about being in a Fiber Club with monthly installments. You get to try out different fibers, so you know what to buy and what not to buy in the future.
This one was called "Celebrations" and was the July installment of the Spunky Eclectic Fiber Club.

I've got more to show you, but that will have to wait for another post. I've got my Fiber for September in the mail today, and I have to take pictures of it before I tear into it. But my batteries are recharging as we speak. Nothing prepared me for the wonderful colores of this month fiber, it's just wonderful. You'll see. And there was another surprise in the mail too. Stay tuned!
PS It's driving me crazy, that this post is so willy nilly, but that's not what I see before I click 'Publish Post", it looks all fine on my screen, but the real post is all mixed up. Sorry about that.