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

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

A furry visitor this week

My grandkitty is staying with me this week while her Daddies go on vacation. Her name is Joules and she is the sweetest ball of fur I know! She has made herself quite at home and loves her morning routine of heading out to the screened in deck to protect us from marauding autumn leaves! She is an indoor cat and this has been quite the vacation for her too.
We were able to take advantage of the 72 degree weather and had a wonderful afternoon on the deck while Joules watched from behind closed doors. Not everyone is comfortable with kitties wandering free.
Liz finished the angora scarf. It's lovely!
It will be a warm defense against the cold this winter.
Then she started a hat to match and it's coming along nicely.
Elaine grabbed her knitting bag and hurried over here only to find out it didn't have her knitting in it! So she borrowed my needles and started a 2X2 ribbed hat in Lion Brand Wool Ease yarn in a heather red color.
I had yarn left from the scarf I finished last week so I started a cowl. I'm knitting 2 rows of each color so I'm getting lots of practice knitting the "Jogless Stripe". When you knit in the round you are creating a spiral of rows so the second round doesn't line up with the first stitch. The video shows how to avoid this.
This past Saturday was the Southern Adirondack Fiber Festival at the Washington County Fairgrounds in Greenwich, New York. It was a lovely day to be out and around in the sunshine. I found two yarns which I couldn't resist. The teal is from my friend Karin and it's from her new product, Delirium, a blend of Yak fiber, merino and nylon, colorway "Set in Stone". The gray is from Ball and Skein called Ariel, colorway "Silvery Moon", and is a blend of Alpaca, silk, and cashmere. These two yarns are so soft they have to be held down so they don't fly away! I'm making Martina Behm's Leftie scarf for myself. I think I'm going to love this!
Beth knitted a hat for someone and decided he wouldn't like the slouchy style so...
she knitted another hat for him using the basic principles from the Baa-ble Hat pattern, for sale on Ravelry. She had to start it with a provisional cast on so she could knit the ribbing for 5 inches then fold it up and knit 2 stitches together, one from the needle and one from the provisional cast on edge. This method gives a double thick band of ribbing and a nice finished edge.
Her son and daughter-in-law are expecting their first baby in November so she also knitted a hat with the colors of Ohio State. Cute!
And let's not miss the cute little toy she made! This little elephant was even cuter in person! This grandbaby will have the most unique toys and clothes!
Not sure of the recipient yet, Beth started "What Alice Found" scarf a few weeks ago. She was knitting along merrily when suddenly she realized the stitches were twisted! Those knitters out there who knit in the round know how frustrating it is to check and recheck those stitches when joining to knit in the round only to find out that those 300 stitches got twisted when no one was looking! 
It's those knitting gremlins!
From top left going clockwise: Liz's finished angora scarf, Beth's finished cowl, and Carole's finished lace cowl. Beautiful job ladies!
Carole started this hat last week with Plymouth Encore and made some progress tonight.
She showed us a project she is knitting for her friend who loves color so what better choice of yarns that Noro Silk Garden?! These are two different colorways that will be striped to make...
Shizuku. Carole is pointing to a section where she had to cut the yarn and bring in a new color because the two skeins were too close in color to knit together at that point. She did a very nice job of fudging it!
Dorah's Mistake Stitch scarf is growing steadily.
And Beth started a real Baa-ble hat tonight. Check out the pattern. It's really clever and cute.
Maureen is still plugging away on her cowl. The colors are just energizing!
And look who came to supervise our knitting. She had her paw on Dorah's knee to make sure she didn't get away.
The Joules noticed the end tail of the yarn. Now that's there just for her to play!
Maureen was under close supervision too. Yes, Joules is a big cat! And oh so loveable! 
I'm going to have a hard time giving her back!

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

The goods were delivered today

Some of the Chicks and I delivered our baby clothes to the Community Maternity Services today. We had a lovely visit with Anne Marie Couser, the Executive Director. She pulled items from the bags and ooohed and aaahed over each one. She made us feel special with her compliments. It's so nice to make things for people who really appreciate them. It helps to make us feel like we're really making a difference in someone's life. 
(left to right: Cinzia, Anne Marie, Liz, and Elaine. I'm hiding in the back)
The evening Chicks started some new projects and continued on those in progress. Carole started the Conifer hat.
She found a skein of Plymouth Encore in this lovely green and cast on the required number of stitches. She's well on her way to a warm hat.
Dorah found a nice Arucania yarn to start her Mistake Stitch scarf, a favorite standard for all of us. It's one of those patterns that is hard to mess up so it's a good one for conversation or TV watching.
Maureen doesn't have too much left to knit on her Last Minute Cowl. I love the brightly colored yarn!
I've made some progress on my Miss Winkle too.
Those loops look like they would be difficult to knit but the pattern is very clearly written and this is becoming one of my favorite knits.
I finished blocking my Nurmilintu and didn't notice until it was pinned out that it has little hearts in the lace. The yarn is Queensland Sugar Cane yarn. No, it doesn't taste sweet! Ask my goofy son!
When I made the first one it was with a yarn that was variegated, almost tonal so it was too busy to see the lace design. But this solid red really highlights the lace.
That's why it's so important to study the yarn to make sure it is appropriate for the pattern you'll be knitting.
There's nothing worse than knitting for several weeks on a garment only to dislike the finished product. Believe me, experience is the best teacher!

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

It still feels like summer!

We started the day winding up some cakes of yarn. None of my tables are the right size to clamp the ball winder so I have to improvise. Today I attached it to the armrest of the deck chair. Sometimes I clamp it to the leg of the coffee table. Hey! Whatever works!
 Cinzia finished the sweater vest and was looking for opinions on a button.
 Dark or...
 We all liked the one that looked like wood. And look at how beautifully this sweater blocked!
 Cinzia added a cowl to the inventory too. She was intending to make a long scarf but ran out of yarn way too soon. Plan B! Make it a cowl! That's the great thing about knitting. There's always something you can create if you just use a little imagination.
 Elaine is whipping up a Mistake Stitch scarf with a warm wool of navy blue.
 And Liz's angora scarf is coming along nicely. She will definitely have enough yarn to make a hat to match.
 Carole had to stop knitting on this little baby sweater until she can find more yarn. She might have to resort to pastel stripes somewhere since there is no more of this color and she needs enough to finish the sleeves.
 Maureen's cowl looks so nice and bright. It's a quick easy knit, great for having a conversation.
 I finished the Noro Stripe scarf and couldn't resist starting something new...
 Miss Winkle (using Periwinkle Sheep Sock Dream in Memories of Summer) is an asymmetrical triangle scarf. The yarn is a blend of superwash merino and 10% cashmere. It will be a softee! I've been eyeing this pattern for a couple of years now and finally decided to purchase it. I don't usually like to buy patterns because I don't want to suddenly find out I hate it and already laid out good money for it. But this one's a keeper!
I see many more in my future!

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Making labels

There was a full house of busy bees this afternoon. We labeled everything so we could inventory a donation to Community Maternity. Sofia (second from the left) told us a funny story about someone she saw while she was lifeguarding at the pool. She noticed a woman bouncing up and down in the pool and thought nothing of it but then noticed she was leaning her elbows out of the pool. On second look she could see the woman was knitting! In the pool!  Making a sweater! WITH CABLES!!! We all laughed and wondered how she avoided wetting the wool or dropping everything into the water. Some knitters just can't waste a second of time! 
We knitted 39 items this time around including hats, sweaters, booties, vests, blankets, and a cute little dress.
 Cinzia made a bunch of baby hats like this one. So cute! I'll have to get the pattern from her.
 And Liz's scarf has gotten much longer since last we met. The yarn is a blend of merino, nylon, and rabbit angora. Not only is it soft, it has a fuzzy halo that makes the fabric luscious!
 Barbara is working on another Present cowl. This is a quick and easy pattern if you need a gift in a hurry. This will go into the inventory for our yarn bombing.
 Elaine cast on for a Mistake Stitch Scarf in a nice denim blue.
Maureen started a Last Minute Cowl just like the one Beth made a few weeks back.
And here is the second one Beth started with the same pattern.
And Carole's baby sweater has grown quite a bit since last week but she is wondering if there'll be enough yarn. She might have to throw in some contrasting stripes.
Time to design a new element!