Glorious Fall Sunday

Bob and I had a wonderful day today. It started out visiting our kid at the bakery where she works.

Everything is gluten-free and nut-free so we could eat everything! We had a tough time narrowing down our selections, so we didn’t. We each took one bite out of everything.

Then we went for a long hike at Mohican State Park. It was wet and rainy, but we were enjoying the trudge and took a break under a rock ledge.

I love to pore over the carvings in the rock. The oldest (dated) one we found was from 1871.

I brought coffee (an idea I got from stgeorgeknits) and what was left of the blueberry muffin. I may have been stalling a little on the climb up these stairs, too.

All the fall yellows were out in full force.

As you can see, I brought my Birds of Blendon Hat along.

We even got to walk across a covered bridge!

It was a charming day, and I made some progress on my sock while in the car.

And I got a thrill when we arrived back home. Kate Davies left a comment on my Instagram saying my hat was lovely! What a great topper to my day.

How was your Sunday?

Birds of Blendon Hat

I finished it!

I quite like it. It does remind me of that walk in the woods and the birds in the snow. I didn’t finish coloring in my chart, but never mind. The top is my favorite part.

I enjoyed knitting it so much I’ve decided to knit more stranded color work! I saw The Oa Hoodie on Ravelry and burst out, “I have to knit that!” When I stopped by my super local (around the corner) LYS 614 Knit to pick up some size 3 dpns for the crown of the hat, I fell in love with this yarn and it’s perfect for the pattern.

The purple will be the pop of color. I’ve never knit with Scout yarn before but it’s got a nice squish to it.

So another Kate Davies design in my queue and I haven’t even cast on the Carbeth yet. I guess I’m a fan!

Wooly Woods

I made two felt paintings for an upcoming art show. They are based on two Instagram photos I took last winter while walking in one of our local metro parks, Blendon Woods.

Photos:

Felt “paintings”:

Right now I’m in the process of framing them. I like how they turned out, and am planning to do more work like this. I’m also framing the photos to show with them, but as it’s a group show and I’m not sure how much space I’ll have, I’ll have to wait and see about that.

I am also hoping to include my Birds of Blendon hat which I am almost done with! I’ll post when completed (hopefully tomorrow.)

Are you glad it’s Friday? I worked on a budget all day. I’m glad it’s Friday.

WIP Wednesday Sick Day

I am under the weather today, and am trying to rest and take care of myself. Working from home is great, but it is so easy to fall into working all the time. I don’t feel terrible today, as my fever and headache subsided last night, but I know if I don’t recuperate today I may become more ill and miss work when it is inconvenient. Today is a light day anyway (until I get “deliverables” from my team) so I may as well take it easy and knit.

We don’t say “deliverables” at work. I think it is funny to throw corp speak around like I wear a suit or something. Say it one time with me: “deliverables.” Roll your Rs when you say it.

I’ve never posted a WIP Wednesday before. If I have the energy, I may even update my Ravelry today!

  1. To frog or not to frogimg_0870This is my West Highland Way Club design contest hat in Kate Davies’ Milarrochy Tweed. I had fully planned to frog it today and use the yarn for a Goats of Inversnaid hat for my youngest son, Hans, whose Chinese zodiac sign is a Goat, like me. He is also an Ares, so he is double ram. And, we like goats, a lot. I wish we could have goats.

    Just a goat running up to the camera from r/aww

    Anywhozle, I had frog freeze when I started to rip it out. I’m so close to finishing it, and I have plenty of yarn leftover to make the Goat hat. Really, all I have to do is finish the crown. Even if I don’t love it, maybe I should finish it. What do you think?

  2. Not so plain gray sweater for Harald in Manos del Uruguay Maximaimg_0873I am ready to shape the second neck edge and shoulder, and will mattress stitch the shoulders together. When he is here for family movie night this week (Hocus Pocus) I will have him try it on and make sure things are fitting well, as well as measuring for the sleeve length. I’m pretty sure I’ll have this done in time for Christmas.
  3. Bobbly Tam in The Fibre Company Arranmore Lightimg_0871 I’d really like to wrap this one up. I am ready to decrease for the crown. Is WIP Wednesday a thing because it’s hump day? I notice my knitting is like that. I reach a “hump.” Once I’m over that, things progress quickly.
  4. Plain blue sock in Knitting Goddess yarnimg_0874Nothing to see here. Not a Hunter Hammersen pattern after all. Just a plain old sock. I’m happy to be knitting a plain sock since the plan was to knit it while walking. I haven’t tried that yet. I hope I’m coordinated enough. Do you knit while walking?
  5. Purl Soho Sweatshirt in local handspun merinoimg_0872This yarn is super yummy to knit. It’s soft and spongy, and I’m wondering if it is soft enough for my son Henry to wear. He doesn’t like anything wool. He’s sensitive to the itch. I had intended this to be for me, but if it comes out too large, I may gift it to him. It’s his color, too. If not, I’ll look for a good acrylic to make something for him, or maybe cotton. Although, knitting with cotton isn’t my favorite since it has no elasticity. I don’t really enjoy knitting with acrylic, either. Any suggestions?

There they are, all my WIPs. I haven’t cast on for the Carbeth yet. I may wait until after the holidays. It’s a bright, holiday red color, though. Maybe I should cast on today? I hear it is a quick knit.

This post is a little loopy (get it)? I should probably take a nap. It would help if I could breathe through my nose.

I’ve highlighted questions and “action items” for you in red, for fun. Please post your answers in the comments, or on your blog. Post a video of you saying “deliverables” while rolling your Rs like Sean Connery. Bonus points if you have a glass of scotch in your hand. I would like that. Is that too much work for a sick day? That’s okay, too. Thanks for reading.

Fiber Fests Q&A

Another Q&A from nothingbutknit2!

Q. Have you attended a fiber festival? What did you think? Were you overwhelmed or in your element? If you’ve never been do you want to attend a fiber festival?

A. Yes, I’ve attended several fiber festivals. I love them!

Q. What is your favorite part of a festival? Do you enjoy the items available for purchase, the animals or are you all about hanging with other crafters?

A. I love it all, but my favorite is purchasing hand spun, hand dyed yarn directly from the makers.

Q. If you’ve attended more than one festival (you lucky crafter) which is your favorite and why? If you haven’t attended one, which one would you most like to attend?

A. I’ve attended Maryland Sheep and Wool, Great Lakes Fiber Show, A Wool Gathering, a local knitting conference, and a Knitter’s Review retreat. My favorite was the retreat. I got to sit around and knit in the Shenandoah Mountains and visit a winery with Annie Modesitt!

Q. I’ve been seeing lots of ads for crafty travel. Basically it’s a trip centered around a craft like knitting. You travel to a place and become a craft-centered tourist. There are also cruises where instructors teach classes on the ship. Have you seen these ads? Do you think you’d like to travel in a craft centered way? Would you like to visit wool mills in Ireland, Scotland or New Zealand? Would you want to take a cruise with your favorite designer?

A. I would skip the cruise but I would love to visit the Shetlands on a knitting themed trip. I follow Stitchtopia on Instagram! Iceland is on my bucket list too.

Speaking of, years ago when I was at that local conference, I purchased a hank of Cheryl Oberle’s Dancing Colors yarn, pic above. I have finally found the perfect pattern for it!

celtic myths shawl

(photo by lu7623 on Ravelry)

Tools

I thought it might be fun to post something about favorite knitting tools. Here’s a list of my “can’t do withouts”.

My Swahili Modern Fair Trade knitting basket. It was handmade by Senegalese artisans from grasses and salvaged strips of plastic. It used to have a handle, but my cat chewed it off. It’s okay. I carry it around like a big present because that’s how I feel about it, and it has a lid to keep the cat out of the knitting. Did I mention it is the happiest shade of orange?

From left:

Haven Herbs Flying Trapeze Balm for my dry and chapped hands. (Disclaimer: I’m a worker-owner of Haven Herbs.) The comfrey and calendula is healing and the lavender is antimicrobial and smells wonderful. It’s also natural and non-greasy because you don’t want that on your knitting.

Small Decomposition Notebook to jot down where I am on projects or other important notes. I love that these are 100% post consumer recycled paper and the different illustrations make me smile. Right now I’m using Wild Garden.

Plymouth Yarn Company’s travel crochet hooks. I use these on the regular because I’m a crochet cast-on person. Also good for picking up dropped stitches. Each end is a different size so they are compact. (These are old and I don’t know where you can get them now.)

Goose Pond’s sheep needle sizer and gauge measure. Cuz it’s efficient with 2-in-1 uses and it’s cute! (Also old. I’ve been knitting a long time.)

What are your favorite tools in your knitting kit? Please leave a comment if you post on your blog!

I wasn’t paid or rewarded in any way to endorse any of these products, except for sharing my joy. I wouldn’t mind if you checked out Haven Herbs, but no pressure.

Bonus question: Do you have favorite needles? If so, what are they? Mine are Peace Fleece‘s straight wooden needles with the painted balls on the end.

I would love to try their new yarn, too!

Experiments and a Q&A

experiments in leaves and wool and wax.jpg

Today I experimented with wet felting my coopworth fleece, real (pressed) leaves, and beeswax. Not a total failure, but nothing great either. I have an art piece due in a couple of weeks and hey, guess what, I don’t have one ready to hang. I might have to fall back on knitting, as it is the one medium I feel I have mastery over. I do still have time to knit something, but I am lacking a strong vision.

So how about a Q&A from nothingbutknit2?

What is the first actual craft you remember doing as a child? (Not coloring or finger painting. Something more special that you didn’t do regularly.)

Embroidery with my grandmother. I also remember some really great crafts at my hippy dippy primary school. We made those ice cube candles and sand candles, and batiked our own t-shirts. I made a Wild Cherry design on mine. (Enjoy.)

What is the craziest craft you’ve tried?

I can’t think of anything crazy. I made corn dollies for a short while. It was fun and easy and I was good at it. The hardest part was sourcing the dried wheat.

What craft would you like to try but you know you’d be bad at it?

I would love to try lost wax casting my own jewelry. I probably would be bad at it because I’ve never been a good sculptor. It was the one art class I didn’t take in college. Although, if I am being honest, I’m not sure that’s relevant. I did take painting, and I’m a horrible painter.

If you had to give up your crafting how would you spend your crafting time?

Probably still sitting on the couch watching horror movies but not knitting. I would like to spend more time hiking, though.

What craft isn’t your thing? Have you tried it or do you just know you wouldn’t like it?

Macrame. You would think it would be my thing, all fiber arty and really trendy right now. But I guess I have some old memories of the 70’s lurking in the back of my mind and some resistance to trying it. I have seen some beautiful jewelry made with macrame.

Anniversary Getaway

This week Bob and I went to Hocking Hills to celebrate our 6th wedding anniversary. We went for our honeymoon, and we go back every October.

This year we went back to the cabin where we stayed for our honeymoon, Evergreen Place. I was ambitious and brought a lot of knitting.

I made a point to knit at least a little bit on each WIP. And I started a sock!

The yarn is really that blue, but the basket it is sitting on is not quite that dayglo orange. Pretty close, though. The yarn is Knitting Goddess and it is 85% Wensleydale and 15% Shetland, and it is wonderful and full of lanolin! I picked it because it is all wool but sturdy enough for socks. I think I blogged about this before.

In addition to my knitting, we did a lot of hiking on this trip. On our last day we hiked Jacob’s Ladder (a steep zig zag incline) to be rewarded with this view from Christmas Rocks.

It was breathtaking, or maybe that was all the climbing. But we were happy at last to have a crisp autumn day, even if there isn’t much color in the leaves yet.

I had to share this photo because these are little fungus spores. I touched one and it puffed which surprised me, and I accidentally breathed the spores in. I told Bob the fungus might take over my brain and I might become the first zombie in the zombie apocalypse, so to keep an eye on me.

What do you think about this fall display we happened upon? It is certainly striking. I may have edited the photo to make it a little more dramatic.

You can tell I’m in a Halloween mood.

This means “a hundred thousand welcomes” in Irish Gaelic.

Here’s a random pic of Bob to wrap up this random post. Also, this bear. I love this bear keeping watch on the porch.

October is for Horror Movie Knitting

Bob surprised me today by putting on Joe Bob Brigg’s Horror Marathon on Shudder. I love horror movies, even bad ones. Maybe especially the bad ones. I watch horror all year, but we seem to watch nothing else as Halloween approaches.

We just watched Tourist Trap. Spoiler alert: this movie is from 1979, but in case you haven’t seen it and are considering watching this gem from bygone days of yore, you might want to skip ahead one paragraph.

Chuck Connors is hamming it up as a deranged serial killer who chops up unsuspecting daytrippers and brings them back to life as mannequins. The surrealism of the mannequins made this film really fun to watch. Apparently the director trained with Luis Bunuel. It shows.

I am still plodding along on Harald’s plain gray sweater. I’m almost done with the back. I decided on set in sleeves. I’m going to knit mock cables on the front, gansey style. So I guess I can’t call it plain anymore.

What is your favorite thing to watch while knitting?