Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Big finishes

I have two major projects finished. The first one was a pair of mittens that really took me to the limit. I learned a lot from this pair and it was a labor of love. However, they are a gift, and even if I don't think the recipient reads this blog I don't want to post a picture here. However, if you have a Ravelry account (which she doesn't), you can check it out there. Hopefully I'll remember to do a proper post after Christmas but let's just say I damn nearly knit 2 pairs of mittens on 2mm (US size 0) needles ;)

I am, however, able to show you another finish. This one was finished this evening at the library, about 15 min before they closed! Those of you (you know who you are) that left early, you didn't get to see the blanket in it's finished glory. The photo is a little consolation for you ;) He he he

This blanket is another labor of love. I started it in April 2008 (not 2 years ago as I claimed at knitting) and have been taking it slowly. It's the April project from EZ's Almanac. I made it with 15 skeins of Lamb's pride bulky in Lemon drop (yellow), prairie goldenrod (yellow-brown variegated) and Persian peacock (blue) on 7mm needles (I don't think there is an US counterpart to that needle size, but it would be 12 or 13 maybe).

I'm so happy it's done and I have this beautiful warm blanket, just in time for winter and happy that today was a holiday (Veterans Day), which gave me extra knitting time as well as special one-on-one with the younger daughter (the older one was at school but the younger one doesn't have school on Wednesdays).

Sunday, November 01, 2009

How to get started knitting again.

I didn't really stop knitting. I was just working so much I didn't have energy to knit when I came home and/or I came home from work so late that I went straight to bed.

Twice a year, our sponsor come and see what we have been doing, and it is always very busy right before. But now this is over for the time being.

During this busy time, I'd come across a pattern on Ravelry for slippers that I was dying to make for the girls. The pattern is called Peter Pan Slipper and was really just a diagram of a granny square that turns into these cool slippers.

I had no idea about the gauge or the weight of yarn/size of hook, but I ended up using worsted weight yarn and 5 mm hook. That fit perfectly for both the girls.

Kamilla got red ones but when I was going to make orange ones for Ása Sóley, she revolted. She wanted the slippers but not in orange (I was trying to use yarn I had). We ended up going to the LYS (prjónabúð) and Ása Sóley picked out pink yarn, that was more to her liking. With a little help from her mom she even picked out a yarn that was on a $2 discount.

We came home and I started the pair immediately after the girls went to bed and, voila, I had them ready before I went to bed, or about 3 hours later. These are so fast and easy. The girls love them. We call them their 'Elf slippers' and that's my name for them on Ravelry - Álfaskór (Ravelry link).

Ok, so the title of the post was 'How to get started knitting again' but here I am going on and on about a crochet project. Well, after finishing this quick and easy crochet pattern I was ready to start tackling my more demanding knitting projects again. I have a stranded colorwork mittens on the needles, that are destined for a Christmas packet and I better crank them out soon. The fact that I have to make the third mitten doesn't help. The first mitten was too small. I knit the second one with same size needles, but took care not to have the fabric pucker up too much and it came out much better. So now I have started on the third mitten.

I have other projects calling out for me. But I want to focus on Christmas knitting for now.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Crazy for towels

I have a finished object. My other projects were stalled so I started a towel. I really like it.

The pattern is called Chili Pepper Red Kitchen Towel and is a free Ravelry download. I made it in Lion Brand Cotton in the Avocado colorway on 4.5 mm needles.

Now I'm hooked on making towels. I started another one based on the garterlac pattern in red and orange. It should bright up the kitchen :)

Saturday, September 26, 2009

My knitting is on display

That picture above is an announcement for a knitting show at the library where my knitting group meets. We got two cabinets to display our knitting in:

I sent in three of my knits. The sweater (cardigan) I knit for Clint (husband):

and couple of shawls (center)

Here are some of the other knitters knitted projects:

I love the duckie in the tub hat by Andi Stern. She is a very talented artist that hangs out with us mere mortals ;) ha ha. Here you can see some of her work

It's too much for me to document each and every project but in the pictures you can see some ossom (intentional spelling) knitting by the very talented knitters that meet at the Athens County Public Library (Ohio) every Wednesday evening.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Rip-it, rip-it ...

... is the sound a frog makes.

When I ripped out my knitting, it didn't make a sound.

First up was a shawl I knit 2 years ago. It is called the Woodland Shawl and it is made exactly as the pattern prescribes, with one 100gr ball of sockyarn.

It was too small. There was no way for me to use it. So I had decided to rip it out and last weekend I finally did.

Here is the before picture (Ravelry link to the project)

And here is the after picture (I frogged it straight onto the ball winder)

The second thing I ripped out was a mitten I had started. This is how it looked:

I have marked out three different sections in the photo. You can see that section 2 is slightly bigger than section 1, which is because I was being super careful knitting all the three colors at the same time. In section 2 I was also being careful that the knitting wouldn't pucker up when I switched colors.

First I knit the mitten up to section 2 and then they got some rest because I was focusing on another stranded project, the Space Invader socks. During the time I made the socks I learned a lot about knitting with two colors at the same time, particularly for the second sock as I wove in the color that was not in use instead of carrying it over long distances, but I also became skilled at knitting with one strand in the left hand and the other in the right hand. That method is both faster than what I did previously (which was to hold both strands in the left hand) and I also found that my knitting was more even and it didn't pucker in like before.

So when I started section 3, my stranded knitting skills had vastly improved. You can tell by comparing section 3 to section 1 that the knitting is more smooth and also that the gauge is different from previous sections, i.e. it is smaller around. When I noticed this I knew what I had to do. I knew I had to rip it out.

So needless to say, the mittens went on a hiatus for a while to ease the pain. I also knew that when I re-knit them I would have to use a larger needle. I had been using 2.25 mm needles (2 circs), but had had doubts that it would be large enough (they are not for me), so when I saw that the gauge was getting tighter, I realized I had to knit them on at least 2.5 mm needles.

I ripped them down to the cuff and they looked like this afterwards:

I was hard to pick up the stitches, not because they would unravel, but because I was using a slightly bigger needles on already tiny stitches. But I prevailed and ended up with the correct amount of stitches.

This mittens have more of a story behind them but it is not the right time to reveal that story now.

Friday, August 28, 2009


Teppi is an Icelandic word that means blanket, throw, afghan and whatever else you would call a piece of fabric intended to cover up humans for comfort and warmth.

When my 4 year old started pre-school a week ago we were told we needed to supply a pillow and a blanket. The caveat was that the two had to fit in the child's cubby along with her backpack, extra pair of clothes and (in winter) coat.

I did find a smallish sofa pillow that she took with her for her first day (last Friday). We contemplating different blankets, but most of them were too big. One was small enough, but it was wool and my dear daughter has a very sensitive skin, so even alpaca scratches her (her sister has no objection to any fiber whatsoever).

Hvað gera bændur þá?

I briefly conteplating making a blanket but one weekend was not nearly enough time for me to plan, purchase yarn and knit/crochet a blanket. I had visited our local Walmart for the hope that they had something I could use, but they don't even have fabric anymore, let alone a small blanket. They have changed their whole store, so I might not have been able to find it even if they did have it.

I was getting worried and on the Saturday I was discussing various options with my husband when all of a sudden I remembered a piece of fleece I'd gotten at JoAnn's in Parkersburg, WV (our nearest shopping area). I'd gotten it because it was a remnant and it was a steal. The pattern is great too and I meant to make hats for the girls for winter and even something else. I even bought (later) pattern with hat, mitten, scarf and vest out of fleece but I never got around to making it.

The pattern is pink/gray camouflage with pink skull and cross bone on it. How cute! I had my daughter lay on the floor and try it on and it was a match! The width of it was perfect and I only had to cut off few inches of the length.

I wasn't sure how to finish it or if I should finish it at all. The fleece is not going to unravel after all. I contemplated zigzag-ing with the sewing machine around. But decided it would be best to handsew around the edge with blanket stitch, see below.

I decided to have the blanket stitch large so it wouldn't take too long. I also happened to have black DMC perle floss (thank you TNNA fairies) so I could get started immediately and was able to finish before the end of the day! Score!

The daughter was able to go to school with a blanket (and didn't have to share a blanket with someone else anymore) and the mom was relieved that she didn't have to worry about this anymore and proud to have made her daughter's blanket herself ;)

'Make do and mend' was a theme of a recent (or current?) series of podcasts by Brenda Dayne and I love that theme. I've made do (made a blanket out of fabric I already had) and mended (the socks that had snagged on a nail) and it feels great. Try it!

But speaking of blankets. Do you remember the yellow blanket I was working on. I made 24 squares and then I crafted them together and knitted up the hole that was formed where the corners met. This was a pattern from Elizabeth Zimmermann and appeared in Knitter's Almanac as the April project. Here is the link to my ravelry entry.

Well. Last Monday I was knitting up the last holes and thus finishing the main part of the blanket when my husband's allergies starts acting up to the point he has to get an allergy tablet in the evening time. I figure he is allergic to the mohair in the yarn. This is Lamb's pride, which is 15% mohair. :(

So I spent a lot of time and a lot of money on a blanket that my husband is allergic too and we don't realize until it is almost finished. I only have the border left at this point (and to craft stitches at the edges). So I'm not sure what will happen. My husband assures my he doesn't mind and that I can just use the blanket myself. But I still wouldn't be able to use it sitting next to him so that's only marginally better. I'm contemplating giving it away, but it would need to be for a VERY special occation and/or to a VERY special person, who will appreciate it. Hmmm......

Or maybe I can use it and it wont bother my husband so much when the actual knitting is over.

We'll see.

Friday, August 21, 2009


Look at that ugly mess in the middle of my knitting. I couldn't be more proud of it ;)

I just darned my first sock. Usually when my socks get holes in them I just put them away and don't use them anymore. These are my Hedera socks I made from corn yarn.

I really hadn't worn them that much when I got them caught on a nail in a doorway and it made a hole in the bottom :(

I'm also excited to be doing a little be of 'Make do and mend' courtesy of Brenda Dayne. She had a series of podcasts devoted to mending and finding clever ways of using things around the house and to make-do with what you have. It was very inspiring. I want to do more of that. In the past I've bought sweaters at thrift stores (nytjamarkaðir) and even partly unraveled them and tried to knit with the resulting yarn, but I want to do more of that. So watch this spot. Don't wait around. It might take me a while to get to it ;)

And not to forget. If you are thinking about darning your first sock, or freshening up on the technique; this is what I used:

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Socks - long time in coming

See that. That's me playing Space Invaders wearing my bmp socks :)

I finally finished the socks. When I looked on Ravelry it said I'd started them in February 2008. That is not correct. I started them this year and must have made a small mistake recording the event. I still can't believe I started them in February. I guess I just started them and then came a very busy time for me and I didn't pick them up until May, but I could have sworn I'd started them in May or around that time. At any rate, here you can see the reason why I don't knit many socks. It takes me forever ;)

The second sock ('high score') went much quicker. One thing was that I'd learned was to knit two colored knitting with both hands AND to wrap the yarn as I went. Big revelation. That way you don't have to let the yarn you are not knitting be carried in the back for long distances and the motives don't pucker in like they had a tendency to do when I knit with both colors in the same hand. The pattern was a pure joy to knit, and after the two color part it was also a pure joy just to knit in one color round after round for the foot ;) I did that (for the second sock) on a road trip to Chicago. On the way back, I had knit half the toe (it's knit in short rows) when I spilled coffee on it.

Immediately when I came home I rinsed the coffee out of the toe and laid them out to dry. The next morning I'd noticed that although the coffee stain was gone, the white yarn had turned gray! Hmm... The black yarn bled. The socks went to 'time out' and now I'm not so sure if I ever dare to wash them!!!! Although the bleeding could have been due to the fact that the stitches were still on the needles when I washed them so they were more wet then had I been able to wash them properly (cross fingers).

Recently, I ripped the half toe back and re-knitted it with new yarn. The 'only' thing I had left to do was to hide the ends and do the dublicate stitch part (the shooter). The duplicate stitches was a challenge, because I didn't have enough light to see the tiny little BLACK stitches (did I mention they were black?). But couple of days ago, my husband dug out a little lamp that fits perfect next to my knitting area and I grabbed the chance and finished the deed ;) This is the second time I do duplicate stitch and both times it was white on black fabric - will I ever learn ;)

The socks were knit on 2 mm circular needles (2 circs) with Sisu yarn (and scrap Hjertegarn yarn for the green part).

Monday, August 17, 2009

Finished objects

This summer has been slow on the knitting front. I hope it picks up because I have a lot of nice yarn to play with.

I did manage to finish some things. One was a hat that took me about a month of knitting. I'm not kidding. It was a month of little knitting but a month just the same. Then I finish it and block, only to discover that it is way to big!

But lets start with the beginning. The hat is made out of yarn I got for my birthday last year. We had a birthday game in my Icelandic online knitting club, and this yarn came from my Aunt. It was two skeins of Silke-Tweed in burgundy. It was a beautiful yarn and since it is 52% silk, very luxurious as well.

It took me some time to find the right pattern for this yarn. I finally found Fern Glade from It requires 2 skeins of yarn, which is the same fiber (50/50 silk/wool blend) as I had. Perfect!

Well, it took me 3 tries to knit it up. First two were because I didn't bother reading the pattern and was trying to make a slouchie out of the fitted version and couldn't figure out why it was so fitted!!! The third time I knitted the slouchie version, but because I had had so much trouble getting it slouchie, I might have been a little to generous with the needle size. At any rate, when I finally blocked the thing it turned out way, way, way too big.

Turns out silk doesn't behave in the same way as wool. I knit almost exclusively out of wool and cotton and have never knit with yarn with so much silk in it before. Silk just doesn't have the same bounce as wool does and although intellectually I knew that, I guess I'm so used to the wool that it totally took me by surprise. Long story short, the hat grew considerably after I washed it (by hand) and blocked it. The lace pattern shows up much nicer though, if that's any consolation.

I only used a little bit of the second skein, so I decided to make fingerless mittens out of them. That lack of bounce (I don't know the technical term) was evident there as well. I only needed 44 stitches for a generous fit around my wrist. I've already made the first one. I'm just making it up as I go along. But I don't know what to do with the hat. The prospect of ripping it, after it is all done and blocked, and knitting it for the fourth (4th) time is daunting.

Maybe I should put it in the naughty corner, or the freezer, like my friend Stephanie did with her naughty mohair yarn that wouldn't behave ;)

Speaking of mohair, or rather a pretty good substitute. Do you think that mohair is a little bit too scratchy? Try Suri Dream from KnitPicks. I had been curious about this yarn for some time, so I added a ball of that yarn to a KnitPicks purchase earlier this summer. First when I got it, I kept it by my bed and petted it before I went to sleep. That's how soft it is. It's made mostly of brushed alpaca with some wool and nylon thrown in. It knits up on large needles and is very soft, airy and light. I loved knitting with it so much, that the swatch I was making turned into a scarf! A kid size scarf, but scarf nonetheless. When the scarf was finished I still couldn't stop so I immediately started crocheting a hat for my daughter until I ran out of the yarn. The hat was far from being finished so I reached for my stash and pulled out a kid friendly yarn. It was dark pink eyelash yarn (Lion Brand fun-fur) I had gotten at a library yarn-swap. I finished the hat in that yarn and then used it to add a border to the scarf. That saved the scarf in my daughter's eyes, who was not very excited about the green color. BTW, the colors are most true in the first picture (enhanced).

The hat seems to be a little bit too small for Kamilla and it fits better for Ása Sóley. Ása might end up using it. She likes it with all the pink on it ;) First when I started knitting the yarn up, I was amazed at how soft it was and was sure I'd found a yarn for Ása. But when I put it around her shoulder's, she said it stung her! She seems to have a very sensitive skin and doesn't tolerate any wool, not even superwash wool. However, after trying this yarn (and rejecting it), she went straight for my yarn stash and pulled out a skein of cotton sock yarn and said she could use that! She was obviously no stranger to my stash! So now I will knit a shirt for her out of that yarn. I had started a shirt for a baby, but I couldn't get the gauge right. But with Ása here, I can try it on as I go. It's super-simple. Knit from the top-down, without sleeves. Couldn't be more simple. I did, however, buy the pattern. Mostly for the sizing for babies, but it is also good to just follow the pattern ;)

Oh, and after I added the pink eyelash yarn, Ása has no problem wearing the scarf as you can see in the bottom photo!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Crochet this time around

I haven´t blogged much lately but I´ve crafted. Today I´m going to show you some of the crochet stuff I was doing couple of weeks ago.

I've been secretly following the Potholder swap thanks to Grumperina (what an amazing knitter). You should check out the flickr page (there´s another great group here). What a beauties these are. Who would have thought potholders could look so good?

I started looking around for a potholder pattern and found this one. It's a great pattern. It's simple and clever at the same time. You start the potholder like you would a bag (from bottom up) but once you've crochet enough you fold it over and sew the top edge and it's a potholder.

So I made this yellow one and I couldn't resist adding an embroidered sun (although I did find out that crochet fabric is not the ideal embroidery fabric). This potholder and a corresponding scrubbie (pattern) out of the leftover yarn. According to the theme of this post I should have done a crochet scrubbie. Oh, well ;)

I made a red one for us, but decided against the embroidery this time. My husband has reported back to me that it doesn't insulate very well but it functions well as a hot pad instead. Perhaps it would be ideal to make them a little bit bigger (mine have 35 stitches in the beginning chain) and put an insulating fabric inside before they are sewn up.

Another thing I've done is crochet slobber bibs. Normally bibs are made to catch most of the food but these are for younger babies. When the teeth start coming in (months before the teeth actually come in) they start to slobber and their shirts and onsies (samfella) become soaking wet.

A friend of mine was showing her bibs of on Facebook and she directed me towards the pattern (in Icelandic). But the first one I made came out a little big (the circle overlapped).

So I made another one.

I know they look the same, but they're not. The second one has fewer increases and extra rows. The edging is not included in the original pattern but I added it for extra cuteness. I'm happy how the second one turned out. It's classic and in a neutral color, that can look cute on either a boy or a girl. That was fortunate because the bib was meant as a teacher's gift (end of the school year) for Kamilla's teacher, who is going to have a baby. I didn't know the gender of the baby-to-be so white was a safe bet for me. I love how it looks in white and I'm not sure if I'll try them in different colors! Kamilla brought back a thank you note from the teacher and she says 'he will look cute wearing the bib'. So now I know. She is expecting boy nr. 3! (I was so sure it was a girl since she already has two boys).

Friday, June 12, 2009

Yellow everywhere

Do you know what happens when you graft stitches when you are tired? Ever wondered about that. Just look at the photo.

Yep, there is a twist!

At the retreat about a month ago I finished the last 3 squares (out of 24) and Nancy´s mom Constance was a lifesaver and wove in the ends for me. Now I´m in the process of turning every 4 squares into this:

Which creates 6 big squares, which will then be joined into a large rectangle and a border knitted around it.

The kids can already see the usefulness of the blanket.

When I got the idea to make this (an Elizabeth Zimmermann pattern) over a year ago, I had no idea yellow would become such a popular color, or at least not consciously. I'm really happy with the colors and how it looks so far (save for the twisted square - argh!). I'll keep you posted (I swear).

Another project of mine is also yellow (or yellow-orange). It´s the sunrise circle jaket. I´m getting close to being done with the left front and beginning to wonder if I have enough yarn!

I have finished some smaller projects and there are plenty of stuff that I have taken pictures of (finished or not) but the photos don't always find their way to the blog, which is a shame, but you can find them on Ravelry (username sonjar).

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Knitting retreat

My knitting group had a retreat this weekend. This time we went to a cabin belonging to one of our group member. It is situated in the woods. A great place to sit outside and knit all day and eat good food and enjoy good company.

The cabin is often used for family gatherings and they have an area sheltered by a roof and with a lot of seating space. Perfect for knitting.

I started to piece my blanket together with a tremendous help from Nancy B's mom, Constance. Constance wove in the ends of all the 24 squares!!!! Hurray. She doesn´t knit but wanted to have something to do so she was more than welcome to my squares as well as some unruly yarn :) Thank you Constance!

Thank you all ladies. More photos here.

Sunday, May 03, 2009

Almost there

Almost there - the title of this blog post comes from the fact that two projects that I'm working on are 'almost there' but not quite - and then something comes up.

Do you want to see what a pile of 21 squares looks like?

Voila (I added a coffee cup to help see the size of it).

Too bad it's not a pile of 24 squares, which is the number I needed to make the blanket. The blanket is the April project from the Knitter's Almanac by Elizabeth Zimmermann.

Since last month was April, I decided to focus on this blanket and I ended up making the majority of the squares. I had originally planned to do this blanket a little by little but the temptation of doing the April blanket in April thwarted my plans. Last weekend I went to the yarn shop (Spinning Turtle) to get the remaining 2 skeins of each color that I needed to finish (there is one solid yellow and one variegated yellow-brown). This is the popular Brown Sheep's Lamb's pride Bulky, but she only had one of each. Apparently the yarn was back-ordered. However, the yarn didn´t come last week. When I talked to the shop owner the yarn wasn´t shipped because they were out of some of the colors!!!! Out!!! How can a big yarn company like Brown Sheep run out of yarn!!!!

Well, I could have finished all the squares in the month of April. I get 3 squares out of each skein of the variegated (and 7 out of the solid color). Let's hope it comes this week because next weekend is a big knitting retreat with the fabulous gals at the Athens County Knitters Group (AKA The Rowdy Knitters). Can't wait. I had plans to work on the blanket there, hopefully start crafting the squares together. I guess I can start on that whether or not the yarn comes.

The project I worked on after the blanket was the sideways cardigan from Vogue knitting a year ago (Summer 2008). I started the back last summer, then had to change what I had a little so it just lingered. Now I took it back up and did a lot of laborious lace. Imagine K3tog in cotton and knitting 4 sts into a single yo stitch. Not easy at all. The pattern has a lot of errors in it and the directions in the magazine are hard to follow for the lace, but they published a chart as well (which does have a small error, but who's counting, right?) and that chart saved my knitting. That is until I discovered that for some unknown reasons I had a lot more repeats than I was supposed to. Oh no! It might come from a seemingly innocent mistake I made in the very beginning, that I didn't think mattered, but probably did. So what do I do? Start the lace over? Let me sleep on it. I'll probably to the front pieces first and then reconsider.

Or maybe I'll just work on my own medallion sweater, which is the front page project from this year's Summer issue of Vogue Knitting. I could write a whole blog post about that piece. How I love it and hate at the same time. I probably will write that post someday because I already have the yarn for this project and I can see some swatching in my future.

In the meantime, I'm working on my Blaka, which is a small shawl with a bat motive from the Einband book. There is a KAL going on on Ravelry for it (Lopi group I think) so I'm motivated to work on it. Last time I photographed it, I had completed one bat, as you can see above.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

More on the homemade laundry detergent

When I first made the homemade laundry detergent I didn't have a functioning camera. Now 7 weeks later I have to make another batch so I took the opportunity and took pictures.

The first batch lasted 7 weeks! I can't believe it and it was only 1 1/4 cup Naptha soap, 2 1/2 cups Washing soda and 2 1/2 cups Borax! I had to add some washing soda and Borax because the mixture was too strong and I only used half a tablespoon instead of a whole tablespoon per load of laundry (more for bigger or very dirty loads). So this stuff goes a long way. In the meantime I've also discovered that our local Kroger does have the Naptha soap. It was just hard to find :)

What I do now it that I use 1/2 part Naptha against 1 part washing soda and 1 part Borax. And this is what you get:

I grate the bar of Naptha soap (like I would grate a carrot) and then I put it in the mixer to break it up even more. The smaller the soap particles the better. It's all about getting the biggest surface area for the mixture to clean more efficiently. This soap is very strong and you should wear gloves (latex) and wash the grater and mixer very well afterwards. It would be best to have separate equipment to use for the soap that would not be used for food.

Of stripes, miracles and big balls of yarn

The Sugar and Cream cotton comes in a stripe varigation. These long repeats are a lot of fun to work with. Behold


Both made out of the same colorway (natural stripes) and both patterns are free on Ravelry.

A miracle has happened here in the country side. A new yarn store has opened up! It's called Fiber FUN studio. Now there is no longer 30 min. to travel to the nearest yarn store. The new one is in my township (yes we have townships, that's how rural we are) and only about 10 min away max. It opened on Friday and I stopped there on the way home from work. It is very surreal. You go on a country road follow signs deeper and deeper into middle of nowhere and all of a sudden you are at a yarn store! It is very quiet and cosy and the lady has the yarn store in the basement of her house. The basement is at the ground level (the house is build into a hill) and the entrance is very nice. She has a big space and she weaves too and has many looms set up for teaching. I had a look of her inventory and ended up getting lion brand cotton in my kitchen and bathroom colors. I also had a look at her knittery works of art. She made a wall hanging that's just stunning. If you are travelling through Ohio (or live around here) drop me a note and I can give you the directions to this place.

In other news, I just started using my birthday stash. Last year my Icelandic online knitting group had a birthday game where we sent each other birthday gifts. I, as well as the other participants, got a lot of knitting goodies and some great yarn. I'm finally starting to use it. First I had to figure out what I wanted to do with it, then came Christmas knitting (and traveling to Iceland), then a very busy time at work. So now I'm ready.

I started with yarn that came from Rebecca and it's handdyed and local (for her). The yardage is very generous and I started a shawl called 'Simple yet effective shawl' by Cosmicpluto. It is very simple and I love how it alternates between stockinette and garter stitch. It really adds depth to the shawl but keeps it simple and easy to knit but interesting at the same time. Originally it calls for Noro sock yarn and it would be stunning in that yarn.

I wound the yarn up in the biggest ball of yarn I've ever work with. Here is my daughter as a comparison.

It was very hard to wind it up in the end because my hands were starting to hurt from holding it :o

Happy Easter and Passover everyone :)

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Knitting again

March was tough. There were just too many things going on. But now I hope to get back in the knitting groove. I started the sunrise circle jacket again, this time with the left sleeve/front. I´m still debating whether I should buy the updated pattern or try to wing it. Right now I'm on the side of buying it but I'm going to knit the fronts and sleeves first (the back is the part that has the mistake in it).

I've also been finishing up smaller projects and now I have 9 WIPs in my Ravelry notebook. I know I want to have multiple projects going on but if I have too many I feel stressful. I like having my projects in Ravelry because otherwise I'd be worried that I was forgetting a project.

How about some photos.

This is the Blaka I'm knitting. It is a small shawl with lace pattern of bats on it (bat in Icelandic is leðurblaka, hence the name). I'm using the lace weight Icelandic yarn I dyed with koolaid last year. The purple goes well with the bat pattern but since the color is varied, the bat doesn't exactly stand out. I do still believe it is the right pattern for this yarn though so I just keep on going with it.

After I came back from Iceland with a suitcase full of wool, I made couple of vests. One for me out of léttlopi (Lopi-Lite):

And one for K. out of plötulopi (unspun Icelandic wool):

The pattern is a dress originally, but I turned it into a vest. At the time it was freezing (20F for weeks, -6C) and it was just too cold to be wearing tights. Now it's getting warmer but it quickly gets too warm to wear anything made out of wool. I'm still planing to do the dress for Á.S. and last time I asked she wanted it only pink (I have the pink yarn) no white :o So that should be quick.

I have so many projects that I want to do and have the yarn for that I'm getting restless to start them. When I couldn't knit I still was thinking about knitting and planing future projects in my head, figuring out what I could do with the yarn gifted to me or that I've found at Goodwill. So now when I have it figured out, I want to do them right now! I do have couple of days off, but they are pretty much planned for other things. I don't want to wish for more knitting time because god knows what will happen! I don't want to be stuck in bed with a broken foot or something like that. The universe sometimes has a funny way of getting you what you want so the old saying 'be careful what you wish for, because it might come true' certainly applies in this case.