Eager Beaver Gets the Job Done

I feel like an entire year of pent up pandemic energy exploded this week!

The Just Craft is now available on Stitcher, Spotify, and Apple Podcasts. Google Podcasts had already indexed my episodes — which I didn’t know — but I’ve submitted the new feed to them. I‘ve got two exciting interviews lined up. And James is going to interview me for Podcast Tactics! Now I need to come up with a new logo concept.

I am the cow’s tail (as my Mother and Grandparents would say) on the Water shawl KAL. (That means I’m behind everyone else.) But I did finally finish the second lace short row section. It’s been a rough week, and I have to pay attention when I’m knitting this. The good news is that the lace is repetitive, and I think I can read my knitting now. That should make it go more quickly and easily.

I received my yarn for the Beaver KAL. I ordered Bougie Beaver but oops received Saturday Night Beaver. It’s really pretty and is very close to another yarn I have in my stash. Weirdly close. A little more gold, though. I really wanted Bougie Beaver for my Jessica Jones Cowl, so I ordered another skein, this time in Solo Fingering. I left an order note indicating to send me Bougie Beaver, please and thank you. I’m sure they are overwhelmed with eager KAL beavers.

I am making an effort to not order anymore superwash yarn after this. Here’s an article from Woolful that talks about reasons why superwash wool is not environmentally sustainable. This isn’t new information to me, it’s just that I hadn’t really wrapped my brain around just how many dyers are using superwash wool and how, now, if I order yarn online without paying close attention, it’s likely to be superwash. My eyes are agog at the colors, and I don’t stop to think about the environmental cost. I have purged my stash of some, but not all. I don’t even like the hand of superwash for garments for myself, to be honest. I may use what’s left in my stash for knitting for family and friends who will likely throw their garments in the washer and dryer.

Here’s my second Rikke hat I’m knitting in Malabrigo Arroyo. Oops. It’s sport weight instead of DK. I went down a needle size because my last Rikke was a little big and floppy. I hope this one fits! This is the Anniversario colorway, and it is really pretty.

This is my most recent yarn purchase. It’s my favorite wool from my favorite farm. And hopefully I will soon get to meet Clancy, the sheep. This is the same yarn I used to make my Paris Toujours shawl that I wear all the time. It’s my favorite garment. Maybe I’ll even get to meet Hollis, the sheep who provided the wool for my shawl? I need to decide what color to dye it, although it’s very pretty as is.

YOPing on a Sunday

I updated my Year of Projects (YOP) list today, and it felt good — a reminder of why I should keep doing Year of Projects.

Fiber Art

I reached out to the gallery owner to share my work so far, and make sure the show was still on in September. And it is! So yesterday I looked through my photos for inspiration. I think I will spend some time sketching today. I have four pieces completed, although the fourth is in the still-hemming-and-hawing-and-stitching phase.

Knitting

I’ve been working on my Water shawl since I finished Turtledove. I’m almost to the short row panes.

I also need to cast on the Getting Warmer cowl (Rav link) for the silent auction winner for our fundraiser at work This will be a nice mindless knit for when Water is too challenging for my evening brain.

Sewing

📸 The Avid Seamstress

This is the raglan dress I’m making in the plaid flannel, although I think I will make the sleeves elbow length and a little more fitted than these.

📸 The Avid Seamstress

Here’s the short sleeved version which I will make in a blue cotton shirting. They have a tutorial on their website if you would like more information about this dress. Today my plan is to piece the pattern together.

This has been a Year of Projects Update. You can read my updated list here. You can find out more about the group here.

Bonus content: I am trying my hand at making vanilla extract. At work we are developing a partnership with a Fair Trade vanilla bean farm. Extract is super easy to make. I split the beans and dropped them in vodka. They have only been in there 2 days and it already smells amazing!

Put a Pom Pom on it!

In the before times, you wouldn’t have caught me with a phony fur pom pom on my head. Or, for that matter, speckles in my yarn or a fade on my being. But I can admit when I’m wrong. I was wrong about these things.

You know why? Because knitting should be whatever makes us happy. I think I was taking my knitting WAY too seriously, don’t you? So here’s my Kenora Toque in Rauma Strikkegarn with a pom pom! (Rav link)

Very happy and look how well it matches my duffle coat.

I’m also really, really excited to tell you I am now on the sleeves of my Turtledove! I cannot wait to wear this so I will probably focus on it until I finish it. It’s very soft and squishy. Also, I want you to know, that after knitting the Cocoknits method, I will never, ever try to pick up and knit underarm stitches again. I will (and did) cast on enough stitches on the sleeve to match the underarm, then I will seam it when I’m done. That way I won’t have those weird holes and ladders that I can’t unsee and pretend aren’t there.

Speaking of fades, I’ve decided to knit a Boxy fade (Rav link). I splurged on a yarn fade bundle from La Bien Aimee. It’s my first time ordering from her, but I’ve been drooling since Knit City.

I also ordered some really nice plaid flannel fabric that I had intended to make PJs with, but it is too nice. It wants to be a dress. So I’m sewing this raglan dress. I love it so much, I also ordered some beautiful blue cotton shirting to make a summertime one. I have a lot of projects to add to my Year of Projects list, don’t I?

I’ve been a little down lately, so I haven’t been blogging much. That probably explains all the splurging. I have one last splurge to share.

This print is from a UK artist who made this for Shetland Wool Week 2020. I’ve been waiting for her Etsy shop to be restocked. Now I just have to find a suitable frame. I will hang it in my studio and gaze upon it lovingly and sigh.

How are you doing? Are you okay? I haven’t really been that okay, and a friend recently asked me straight up how I was. It helped to just be able to say, I am not okay. We lost a family member recently, a dear “Uncle” who was technically not my biological uncle, but he was my Dad’s best friend, and my best friend’s Dad, and definitely an important Uncle to me. We were close when we lived in Oklahoma City, and he was there for me during my separation and divorce, and helped me get back on my feet financially. He helped us get back on our feet financially after my Dad died, too, though I was too young to understand that at the time. So, feeling sad but appreciative. Godspeed Uncle Jack. ❤

Also, I am feeling depleted. As I am sure many of us are after a year of living through a pandemic.

But how are you? Please spill your beans in the comments, if you like.

Happy Water Shawl KAL Cast On Day! 🎉

In other news, I sewed a manatee bag for my sister for her birthday.

I finished knitting my Kenora Toque for The Wooly Thistle’s Colorwork KAL.

I’m quite proud of my floats. It’s blocking now, and it’s a tad large as my gauge is 20 stitches to 4 inches instead of 22, but close enough. I’m waiting for a black pom pom to arrive to sew on. I’ll take another pic once it’s final final.

I recreated the yarn emoji. 🧶

Happy March!

Saturday: I’m Makin’ It

I’ve got a chance. I’m takin’ it. Do you remember that show? I’m old. I remember it. Is that the same guy from An American Werewolf in London? It is, isn’t it. David Naughton.

I joined The Woolly Thistle’s Colorwork Accessory KAL and I’m really enjoying this slipstitch pattern Kenora Toque. Look at my loopy floats.

I donated a handknit cowl made with the merino yarn I was given in Kenya to our fundraiser silent auction at work. The winner chose vermillion for the color (one of my favorite colors!) and I dyed the yarn today.

I sewed my project bag for our Water shawl KAL. I have enough fierce merpeople fabric to sew three more bags: one for Marilee, one for Bonny, and one for…? Even the fish are giving attitude on this fabric. I love it so much. I’m making a gradient bag for Sarah. I’m not sure what Laura wants yet. Am I missing anyone? Our KAL starts March 1.

When I look at the mermaid with the ship on her head, I think about the film Revolution with Nastassja Kinski. It’s been a long time since I’ve seen that film, but I remember it having stunning costumes.

What are you making today? Are you watching any old films from your youth?

📢 Sunday Sunday Sunday Year! Of! PROJECTS!!! (projects projects projects)

Sewing

I finally finished sewing all the curtains. Adding these to the living room allowed us to rearrange the furniture, which Bob likes to do fairly regularly to rewire our brains. I was glad not have to make panels for these, although in hindsight, panels look nicer. These block out more light, though, which is nice for TV viewing.

Knitting

I’m plodding away on my Lucky Number Cowl and Turtledove. And my list keeps growing. 😳

Fiber Art

Sneakapeekaloo

I hope to finish stitching on piece number 3 today. Then next week I can frame it and lay out piece number 4.

This has been a Year of Projects Update. You can read my updated list here. You can find out more about the group here.

Today is our Blogville Knitters Virtual Knit at 1PM Eastern. If you are new and would like to join us by Skype, please DM your Skype ID to me on Instagram or Ravelry. You might also leave a comment for me to remind me to go check my messages.

Sunday Year of Projects Update

Hello!

Fiber Art

I had an interesting experiment with the dye pot today. I tried Lanaset dye with citric acid and added some unprocessed wool to the dye pot as well. The merino did fine, but the Shetland (top left) and the Romeldale CVM (top right, unprocessed) did not take the dye well. That’s fine, because I dye the wool for art and I can always use odd colors. And I still got the brown I need for the next piece. Next dye pot will be Jacquard Aztec Gold and back to white vinegar for the acid bath. I also stitched on piece number three today.

Knitting

Knit knit knitting on my Litmus Cowl, which I’m now calling my Lucky Number Cowl, because the number of rows in a stripe is 14, my lucky number. This is great TV knitting. Round and round. And I’m making up for lost time on Turtledove. I hope to be back to my pre-kerfuffle progress soon.

This is my Black Welsh Mountain yarn. I love it, and was planning to make a cardigan with it. But I don’t think this is the right kind of yarn for Emma (Ravelry link). It’s pretty coarse. It would be a great coat, but I’m thinking I might knit an i-cord hearth rug out of it. We need a hearth rug. Did you know wool is fire retardant? It’s true. Wool is a miracle fiber.

This is the gansey I knit for Bob that I am now wearing, because it shrunk and felted and is too small for him now. I found a hole in it so I thought it was a good opportunity to practice my darning. I wanted to try to use duplicate stitch and the results aren’t too bad. I’m calling it “crazy darning” or “darn crazy.” Take your pick. Just remember, you heard it here first.

Don’t worry. I’m planning to knit Bob a new sweater (Ravelry link).

This has been a Year of Projects Update. You can read my updated list here. You can find out more about the group here.

Today is our Blogville Knitters Virtual Knit at 1PM Eastern. If you are new and would like to join us by Skype, please DM your Skype ID to me on Instagram or Ravelry. You might also leave a comment for me to remind me to go check my messages.