I'll be back.

Hello old and new friends. My blog has been inactive but I am still around. I loom-knit (and weave now, too!) but I seem to take more photos of my toddler than my crafts these days. She has that cute factor going for her. Because of this, I have started a tumblr called Tiny Taughts of our home lessons, crafts and projects. Please visit me there and I promise to come back here soon!


Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Refraining from hibernating

If my heel doesn't want to go for a walk, at least my knitty projects can come out to play.

Vegas Scarf reflection

After picking up a few projects from 2009, I finished the previously mentioned Mossy Scarf but then got the itch to knit some new ones. I learned some lace for a friend's birthday present. But then I cast on and off a drop-stitch scarf before finishing the belated gift. Spring startitis has taken ahold.

I wanted a nice, airy scarf for an upcoming trip to Las Vegas. And I really thought it would take longer to knit. The drop-stitch pattern was easy and fun but once it was off the loom, I frowned. Despite the garter edges, it was curling and wasn't laying right. While it wasn't technically lace, I borrowed my friend Zoe's wire blockers. And the scarf came alive! (And my own set of blockers just came in the mail while writing this. Yay!)

Vegas Scarf
I used Skacel Meditation yarn. When I was looking this up for a link, I discovered that it is lavender-scented. So that's what that smell was while I was knitting!

I also am working diligently on sweater-esque purse for a hair stylist at Fantastic Sams. The colors are striping quite nicely. I hope to finish the knitting this week so I have plenty of time to sew the liner and buttons.

Bopper 2 purse WIP

But the itch is back! Since I finished the Vegas scarf so quickly, now I'm dreaming of a felted bag I want to bring, too. I bought some gorgeous Kaleidoscope wool from Door County a few weeks ago and then paired the perfect pattern — Isela Phelp's Rowan bag (PDF link).

Kaleidoscope

And I haven't forgotten about some spring/summer items for my Etsy shop. When I knit every week at Loops and Links yarn shop, I like to use her yarn. And right now, all I have in progress are the sparkly socks. So I will be winding some Nashua Snowbird today to start some fingerless mittens for you. That's a totally legitimate reason to start ANOTHER project … right? ;-)

Nashua Snowbird coral

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Mossy Scarf

Are you ready to think green but the weather is still wintery? I loom-knit up this simple scarf in silky soft Frog Tree chunky alpaca. (Feeling déjá vu? I'm pulling this pattern from my previous blog post to make it easier for knitters to find.)

Mossy Scarf

I love moss-stitch bumpies. Seed and moss stitches seem to have different definitions throughout the knitty world. I follow those who say seed is knitting your purls and purling your knits on each row. Moss is just doubling this. Here is my free Mossy Scarf pattern with a garter border (S=slip stitch, K=knit, P=purl):

Moss scarf

Crochet cast on 17 pegs.
Start with 8 rows of garter stitch (K row, P row)
S K K P K P K P K P K P K P K K K
S P P P K P K P K P K P K P P P P
S K K K P K P K P K P K P K K K K
S P P K P K P K P K P K P K P P P

Moss scarf WIP

Repeat above until you reach desired length. My scarf is about 6 feet long because I wanted to use all the yarn.

Moss scarf WIP

End with 8 rows of garter stitch.
Yarn-over bindoff for an edge that most closely matches the stretchy crochet cast-on.

Mossy Scarf

Friday, March 12, 2010

Thinking green ...

But shades of gray are rolling in.

Raindrops on the dogwood
Fog has dropped in for an extended stay after a sunny weekend.

Last weekend, spring came early and canceled our snowshoeing trip. With blue skies over our heads, my friends and I strolled around the NEW Zoo. The animals were enjoying spring fever themselves as they scurried about. I fed a giraffe and my husband befriended a black sheep who climbed the fence to get more kibble.

Feeding the giraffes
Hello to my new giraffe friends! (More zoo photos for Facebook friends)

The walking was a breath of fresh air and inspired me to do something active everyday starting then. Of course, my body had different plans but I'll touch on that later ...

On the heel of the snow-melt, I failed to see much green in our backyard. Do you remember our vole friends from the summer? I guess our traps didn't cull the population as much as we thought. They carved a deeper superhighway into our lawn during the winter. A small part of me admires their artistic interpretation of our backyard while the rest is dreading the spring cleanup to come.


So I turn to knitting for a dose of green. I finally finished my Mossy Scarf on a foggy night and took a photo this foggy morning. Maybe the damp weather is lingering so I can wear this tonight!

Mossy Scarf

I've also been itching to try out my new Loom Knitting Socks book but I'm not ready for another pair of skinny-yarn socks yet. So I decided to translate a pattern for bulky yarn. Katbyrd on Ravelry helped me figure out the lace on the Little Wisps of Wheat pattern.

Shamrock socks
Socks loom-knit with Knit Picks Shamrock yarn

So here's the footnote of this week's post. My burst of energy earlier this week could lead to the burst of my Achilles heel if I'm not careful. It started hurting earlier this week but no swelling or bruising showed up so I didn't worry much at first. Once I realized I would have to skip my pricey yogilates class, I decided to see a doctor.

Achilles tendonitis
This photo does almost nothing to illustrate my injury. But look, green toes!

My spring surprise is Achilles tendinitis. I get little shots of pain when I flex my foot in certain ways, add the surrounding pressure of a shoe and lately, for no reason at all. The doc says he sees about six Achilles ruptures every spring with people rushing into outdoor activity. So I've been told for the first time ever to stop exercising, which really puts a damper on my weight-loss goal.

Greater forces take away but they also give back. My own Bee Bopper purse earned me a commission for another after my doctor's appointment. My hands will stay busy while I stay off my feet for these first few weeks of spring.

Bee Bopper purse

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Threadknitted

With a rush of last-minute entries — mine included — Threadknits reached the end of the skein at midnight Tuesday.

RED threadknit
RED was my finale project. You can read about the process on my Threadknits submission page. This one is all mine.

So I wrote up, cast on, knit, cursed, frogged, knit some more, bound off, seamed, tweaked and embellished seven projects. You've heard all about most of them before either here, Facebook, Flickr or Threadless. A quick recap :

Sock Battle mittens
I finished the Sock Battle mittens the weekend before the deadline. I'm really happy with how I captured the characters created by Kasey Loman in her Threadless design. You can read more about them on the entry page. This one will head to the shop soon.

Horror in Romantic Comedies hat Yeah Attitude mittens done! More RGB
Hello in There! threadknit hat Woolly hat 2.0
1. Horror in Romantic Comedies hatEntry | Etsy
2. Yeah Attitude mittensEntry | Etsy
3. RGB hatEntry | Etsy
4. Hello in There toddler hatEntry | Etsy
5. Woolly hatEntry | Etsy

But enough about my stuff. I want to share some of my favorite entries in this contest. These knitters and crocheters just blew me away with their talent. (This is in no particular order.)



And this is just the tip of the iceberg. I could go on and on. Instead, I'm just going to tell you to head over to Threadknits gallery and check them out. Can you predict the winners?