Your greatness is not what you have, it's what you give.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Chicks knit and I visit the beach

Barbara has become our official model for all finished projects. Thanks Barb! Here is Elaine's finished Gaptastic Cowl. Looks good!
Elaine finished a beige alpaca hat (on her lap) and she started another Gaptastic Cowl in brown. We are so happy to have Elaine back again.
 Now Barbara is modeling Kathleen's finished Amsterdam Lace Shawl. It's an adaptable pattern which you can knit in any weight yarn and any size so here Kathleen made it bandana size. It's a very memorizable pattern that easy to knit.
 Kathleen's fingers were busy as usual so she added another pair of mittens to our inventory.
 And here she is working on another cowl. We're going to have many warm necks this winter!
Liz finished her version of the Cushy Cowl. She used a super bulky yarn which gave it nice body but it's a killer on the hands and wrists to knit so her next project will be a softer and lighter weight yarn.
 Barbara found a pretty heathered green yarn which will become a hat and matching fingerless mitts.
 And Cinzia started a Nymphalidea Scarf. After she knitted this far into the project she noticed a dropped stitch and offered to rip it back to fix it. Instead I suggested she just thread a needle with the same yarn and weave it back into itself so she doesn't lose knitting time. You'll never notice it within the colors and pattern. And if I can avoid ripping it out I'll find a way to make it work.
 Our evening group worked on cowls and scarves too.
 Carole's Cushy Cowl is almost done...
 And Maureen did the bind off on hers tonight.
 Beth is almost done with her scarf.
 But I still have quite a way to go on my striped scarf.
 Last week I finished my Cushy Cowl. I have 4 other projects on needles which need to be finished. Maybe by next week I'll have a completed project to show you.
 DH and I took a very short vacation to Williamsburg, VA to visit the historical sites; Jamestown, Yorktown, and Williamsburg Village. I learned a lot from very entertaining park rangers. We had great weather until Sunday when we went to Dewey Beach in Delaware on our way home. We were told there was a storm out at sea and it caused the waves to be powerful.
 There's DH watching the clouds roll by.
 To say it was windy was an understatement! But the water was very warm and there were people swimming and body surfing all along the beach. 
By 4PM the dark rain clouds were replaced with pretty puffy clouds and blue sky started showing through.
 We were back at the beach by 8:45AM on Monday and the morning was glorious!
 As you can see it was beautiful on the sand. I really didn't want to leave.
 I met all sorts of creatures both small and ...
 friendly. That's Diesel. He truly enjoyed his romp on the beach.
But all too soon it was time to say goodbye to the sand and surf.
So now I have my photos to remind me how much I love the ocean. It's where I really feel at home.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

There will be warm necks this year!

Elaine made great strides with her Gaptastic Cowl since last week. She'll be binding off stitches soon. It's a free pattern from Ravelry so if you are not a member yet, I suggest you join soon. It's free and has so much to offer fiber artists.
 Liz finished her slouchy hat and it has a drawstring so girls with long ponytails can feed their hair through the top of the hat and close it with the I-cord drawstring.
 She also finished the blue cowl on which she was working last week. This would be good for a non-gender specific knit and it turned out great.
 Kathleen made two Cushy Cowls.
 This blue one looks cozy and 
 This one will be too!
 Kathleen turned some Periwinkle Sheep yarn into a stretchy hat. She demonstrated how it looked so small but it really stretched large enough to fit an adult.
 Cinzia used a Malabrigo yarn to make another short rows scarf that meanders through the colors.
 Now she is working on a Reversible Stripes Scarf with vertical stripes on one side and...
 horizontal stripes on the other.
 Carole's Sanibel Cowl is just about finished. She'll have it blocked and ready next week.
 And Beth is back from 2 weeks in California, touring Yosemite National Park and Napa Valley for a wine tasting tour. From the stories she told us it was a good vacation with lots of hiking and good food and wine. She even had time to knit a few stitches on her scarf.
 Dorah is also knitting the Sanibel Cowl with a Periwinkle Sheep Yarn. We talked about the randomness of the stockinette portions of the cowl and how it might drive a person a bit whacky if they had OCD.
 Dorah added 3 pairs of socks to our inventory. These self patterning yarns add so much interest to a good vanilla sock pattern.
 I had some cashmere left from the cowl I made and couldn't bring myself to tossing it out so I turned it into a headband to match the cowl.
 And after seeing Barbara's Cushy Cowl I felt compelled to make one. It was a quick knit that took only 3 days to complete. I have another one on needles as we speak and will be binding off the stitches as soon as I'm done here.
 Now, what will my next knitting project be?

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Howdy Stranger!

For those of you who have followed The Chicks since way back when, you may recognize Elaine (sitting on the far left) as one of our original members. She came back for a visit today and you can tell by the expression on Kathleen's face it was a surprise for all! {{{I knew, but I kept it a secret}}} It was nice catching up with her and having another knitter in the flock. I hope she will feel inspired to start knitting again and rejoin the group!
 She did bring us two sweet hats to add to our inventory.
 Barbara got back on track with her Mistake Stitch Scarf and finished it beautifully along with...
a lofty, soft cowl. She told us it was a very easy pattern. That remains to be seen with the way I've been knitting lately. More on that later. 
 Barbara started another hat using Manos Maxima yarn. It's such a creamy red and soft yarn.
 Another scarflette finished too.
 Tied with the point in the front makes a nice bandana cowl.
Kathleen is making the same pattern with a different weight yarn. It's called the Amsterdam Lace Scarf  and can be knit in any weight yarn as long as you use the needle appropriate for the yarn. It can look like a tight knit pattern or a wide open lace, depending on how you block it.
 And Kathleen also finished the variegated gray vest she worked on last week.
 Liz is working on this slouchy hat.
 It's almost finished.
 Cinzia added a cute crocheted flower to her hat and again without using a pattern. Sheer genius!
 Maureen's cowl looks great. The variegated yarn shows off the knit 3, purl 3 pattern knitted in the round better in person.
 This is the Sanibel Cowl that Carole is knitting with the yarn from last week's cowl that she had to frog.
 This cowl is working up much more easily than the other one.
Remember the hat Dorah was knitting last week? This is it! We started recounting our experiences with so-called "easy patterns" and all the problems we encountered with them. We've decided that none of us can multi-task anymore. Remembering when our children were little and we could carry on 2 conversations at once while cooking dinner made us melancholy. We laughed about how Maureen made a beautiful buttonhole in a sweater but was called away by some distraction and when she returned to her knitting was horrified to see a big hole in her knitting which she proceeded to repair, only to discover 12 rows later when she was making another buttonhole that uh-oh! that hole wasn't a mistake! Bummer! 
 This is the Barber Pole Cowl designed and knitted by the lovely Staci Perry of in the photograph. I was knitting this last week, operative word here is "was".
 It is a very easy pattern knitted in the round to create a double thick cowl, but leave it to me to mess it up! I had knitted about 8 inches when I discovered 3 different blips in my knitting. The stripes were moving in crazy directions because I got off track. So I tinked back about 2 inches to start in a spot that was following the pattern. But again there were blips. Darn! Frog the whole thing! So now it's a straight forward striped scarf. 
I think I need to use 2 yarns that have a sharper contrast to each other next time I try the Barber Pole. So even as experienced as we all are, mistakes are made and corrected or sometimes ripped out and on to something totally different. Besides, it feels good to rrrriiiipppp it out!