Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Reporting In

Last week I got a real treat and I went to Stitches West for opening day. I am very lucky in that I only live about 20 minutes away from the convention center where stitches is held. Even more lucky, my Mom came with me and we had a wonderful time. It is so fun to share my obsession with my mother! Stitches opened with the author of Victorian Lace giving a presentation about how and why she wrote the book, her research in to victorian knitters and a fashion show of the shawls from the book. It was very interesting and absolutely amazing to me that she could remember how she made each and every shawl! That was followed by a luncheon where we met some lovely ladies from around the state and then we took a class on edging. I learned a lot on how to have a more finished item. After that, Mom and I hung out a bit and had dinner and then the best part . . . they opened the market from 7-9 p.m. for a special market preview only open to registered students. Two hours was not nearly enough but we zoomed around the market and checked everything out. I bought this gorgeous turquoise silk from Tess yarns to make a shawl (what can I say - the speaker inspired me). It was a splurge but I figure if I'm going to take all the time it takes to make a shawl it should be fabulous when I finally finish. Also following in the shawl obsession I bought this gorgeous golden alpaca and silk blend. I bought it from the folks who raise the alpacas so that's always fun. I also bought an beautiful dragonfly button that I will sew on to a felted bag I think. Unfortunately I wasn't able to attend any of the other days of Stitches but I'm glad I got this one day. I really want to get started knitting with these fabulous yarns but I'm trying to make myself finish some items first. Wish me luck!

Friday, February 23, 2007

Snow Day

This week the kids had what we call "ski week" in California. It is always the week of the President's Day holiday and the story goes that the school's got tired of parents pulling their kids out to go skiing so they scheduled ski week so they wouldn't lose the funding for the unapproved absences. Whatever the genesis, it is a fun winter break. This year we took all of the kids to Lake Tahoe to go skiing for a few days. I had forgotten both what a major hassle it is to get everyone geared up to ski and I'd also forgotten how much I love skiing! The snow was fairly lousy but the weather was awesome and we had a great time. In addition it seemed that most of the state was in Tahoe for the weekend so we ran in to lots of friends. I started a cabled hat for horsey girl on the drive up and I love the colors but the cables are turning out wonky. If she doesn't like it when I finish I guess it will be a charity hat (it's still cute just not what she had in mind). And to make the vacation even better??? The newly remodeled Northstar resort has a yarn store in the village!!! Can you believe it? I was totally psyched.

Friday, February 16, 2007

Daisy, Daisy

Do you remember that old song? "Daisy, Daisy, tell me your answer do - I'm half crazy all for the love of you." Well last Sunday I got a special treat and Mom and I went to take a class at Knitting Arts in Saratoga on the Daisy scarf. Now we had been there before and seen this gorgeous scarf. We even bought yarn for it and got the pattern. So when I saw that they were offering a class my first thought was, "we don't need that - we have the pattern." But then I thought there must be some reason they were actually offering a class on the scarf. Well now I know why! There are some seriously weird stitches in that pattern. Purling and wrapping the yarn 3 times each. Then letting all the extra wraps go and knitting, purling, knitting, purling and knitting ALL IN TO THE SAME STITCH! And if that's not enough you wrap 3 times with each of those 5 stitches!!! Well I think the song shoud be, "Daisy, Daisy, what am I going to do? I'm half crazy trying to knit on you." We finally got it though and are starting to make progress. The interesting part is how different it looks depending on your yarn. My Mom is using Classic Elite Posh which is fabulous yarn that is 70% silk and 30% cashmere. That's the yarn the store used for their sample. I decided to use Blue Sky Alpaca. It's the first time I've used Blue Sky and it is wonderful but it's probably a bit too thin for this pattern. It is giving it a very pretty lacy look though! The top photo is Mom's scarf, the middle is mine and the red is the store's sample. The bottom is an edge that you knit at the end and attach. It's pretty cool too because it is knit long and skinny and then turned to sew it on.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Happy Valentine's Day!

Happy Valentine's Day to all of you out there in knitting blog land! I post for you a taste of spring which I hope is on it's way. I am approaching my first year anniversary for my blog and I must say I have had so much fun meeting all of you and getting to know you in cyberspace. When I first became obsessed with knitting I began to wonder if something was wrong with me for thinking about knitting so much and for wanting to knit all the time. Then I discovered that all of you are as crazy as I am and it made me feel so much better! So this valentine's day I am filled with love for all of my new knitty friends and I hope that you all have a wonderous day! Thank you for adding to my life in a very special way.

Friday, February 09, 2007

A Bag is Blooming

I've been making good progress on my bag for my partner in Tote Exchange III. I'm combining two different patterns with some individual changes thrown in for good measure. One of the patterns was written by my friend Carrie but I've not going to give you a link to her blog just yet as I want to maintain some surprise for the final product. I sure hope it turns out well and that my pal likes it. So far it's coming out like I had hoped but I'm crossing my fingers that it felts well and I'm still trying to figure out what kind of handles to put on it. I'm having lots of fun!

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Leapin Lizards!

I finished the Gekko scarf this weekend for the Jumpy Boy. I just think it's so cute. It's a kit from Morehouse Farms and they have the most adorable stuff there. The dark green yarn is their Morehouse Merino which is really soft and wonderful to work with. The bright green is another yarn which isn't as nice but looks good for the contrasting stripes. The feet were fun to do and the little toes are little 3 stitch i-cords! It's a very clever pattern. I gave it to the little guy this weekend and he really likes it. Now I might just have to make their dragon scarf . . .

Friday, February 02, 2007

Slow Progression

I have been working on my Hyphen Boy Bag for what seems like forever. I work on it for awhile and then put it down only to come back to it later. All I need do for inspiration is visit Judy's blog to see how wonderfully hers turned out. Anyone want to place any bets on when/if I'll ever finish this thing???