Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Haloween!

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Aren’t they spooooooky?
Ok, maybe not, by they are very autumnal, it's a pair of socks I'm making for Bill out of some of the yarn I bought at Rhinebeck. Dorchester Farms Hand painted.

I was hoping it would turn out more like the toes – all mottled, but the striping is pretty spiffy too, kind of looks like tiger stripes. One skein is striping thicker than the other, but that's to be expected with two separate skeins of hand painted yarn. This is why I prefer just one big skein.

I did finish the squirrel and oak mittens too, on Saturday actually; I'm just a big slacker and didn't get around to posting about it until now.

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I had a lot of tension issues; this was my first time doing stranded colourwork two at once. And most of it was car knitting, which is never too even to begin with.
I'm hoping a good blocking will help them, but right no Bill loves them as they are and won't give them back, he's already worn them out several times. Maybe they will even out with wear, and I know I'll be able to block hem in the spring when I was all the winter wear.

Then there is this little guy:

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One of the ladies at my knit night recently became a grandmother and wants to make the little ones some winter mittens, but she doesn't want to knit just plain baby mittens, she wants color work, and not big motifs, but little all over ones, I went online and looked around but couldn't find much, and she refuses to improvise, so I'm working out a pattern for here with a couple of different colourwork patterns to choose from.

I hope everybody has a spooktacular day! I live too far out in the boonies to get trick or treat-ers, so I'm making muffins and Bill and I are going to watch movies tonight. Woo!

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Saturday Sky

it's been rainy and dreary all day, and I was afraid I wouldn't be able to take a picture for today, but it just cleared up for a little bit, everything but this little patch was still dark and grey.

the clouds were scudding across the sky quite fast, it was beautiful,

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Saturday Sky, taken Saturday October 27, 2007 at 5:30pm, out front of the Platypus Nest.

Friday, October 26, 2007

one year

happy birth-day to you!
happy birth-day to you!
happy birth-day dear knit bloooooooog,
happy birth-day to you!

yep, it's been a whole year of knitting goodness.
wow, it doesn't really feel that long.
spiffy.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Itching for some socks.

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Those are all the socks I knit last winter.
Not bad, but I haven't knit any socks all summer, and I'm getting twitch for some more.

But I won't let myself until I finish more of what I'm already working on.

I'm still plugging away at Bill's Squirrel and Oak mittens
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Actually more has been knit since that picture was taken, but not much, must get moving!

But, I'm making good progress; I finished the blue butterfly doily:
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Now all I have to do is block it.

This was definitely a learning experience, the big lesson? LOOSEN UP! My starting chain was way too tight; I gave myself eyestrain and a tension headache working that first row. And working into the chains to fill in blocks was horrific until I finally began to loosen up when I was working. Also my TR's were too long, and the parts where I increased a filled block at the end of a row are all wavy because they are looser than the rest of the piece. I'm hoping a good blocking will work a lot of those imperfections out, but I know it won't fix the part where I accidentally spanned two blocks while making one, and then instead of ripping back I just increase two from one in a subsequent row. I know, sucky but it's just practice, and there were so many problems anyways. It'll still get use in my home.

I've started working on the crochet snowflakes for the cards this year, I want to get some more of those made and maybe a few rows done on the feather and fan shawl before I start any new projects.

We'll see how well I hold out ;)

Monday, October 22, 2007

Back!

(warning, this post has a crap ton of pictures, slower connections beware)

Wow, Rhinebeck was awesome this year; I had such a great time!

When we first got there on Saturday we had to go straight to the fiber animals...

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... I mean petting zoo, where we got to feed some adorable baby goats.

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THEN it was to the livestock.

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the tag on this guy's pen said that he was a natural coloured sheep. He looked quite dashing in those grey stripes.

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this picture was taken on Sunday, they had just packed away this guy's neighbor, and I think he wanted to go along, he was being quite vocal about it.

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I love how when sheep "baaah" they have to stick out their tongues.

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Our favorite type of goat, Cashmere. Bill used to own a couple of Cashmere goats before he met me, and always has a soft spot for the little guys.

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alpacas! These guys were humming up a storm while we were there.

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this guy and his friend were taking a nap when we walked buy, oblivious to everybody around them, I love the spots, the look like chocolate chip Llamas!

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Sunday on our way to the Author's tent we saw this gentleman riding his horses. Quite spectacular.

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Ahh... Stitchy McYarnpants herself.
This woman was awesome, I loved talking to her, we got to meet previously during the blogger bingo/ravelry meet up. I would just like to point out all the little items scattered around her and her books... yes, it's the result of many of the patterns from her book, I don't know why that tickles me so much.

And then there was this stunning lady:
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I knew that there was going to be an author's tent, and I knew the Stephanie was going to be there, but for some reason I didn't bring any of my books, and was way, way too shy to actually say anything to her while I was there, instead I hid in the background and took her picture... then ran. Ah well... maybe next time.


So, what did I come away with this year?

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this.


On the far left the four autumnal skeins are hand dyed sock yarn from Dorchester Farms (their business card says they have a web site, but when I type it in it doesn't go anywhere.)

Next up is the blue green skein of sock yarn from autumn house farm

Then a purple and pink skein of Aussi Sock, sock yarn

And finally on the right, a skein of On Line Supersocke 100 (I know, not hand dyed, but it amused me.)

And then there was the purchase that made me nearly hyperventilate.
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a skein of the most gorgeous gossamer weight yarn I have ever seen/felt. It is appropriately named "Heaven" 120 grams, 3100 yards of pure purple heaven. *sigh*

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I have never worked with something this fine before; I am afraid to even handle it.
I have no idea what I am going to make, but I couldn't not buy it.

I also bought a couple of sock books, Cat Bordhi's Socks Soar (I've been hearing a lot of good things about her newest book and wanted a little background, and her toe up heel intrigues me)
And this:

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last year I meant to buy this book, but when I came back on Sunday it was all sold out, so I made sure to purchase a copy as soon as I arrived on Saturday.


Besides yarn and wool and fiber animals, and spiffy authors, there was also Blogger Bingo!

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Yeah... no bingo for me.
I met tons and tons of bloggers, but nobody was on my card!
I don't mind though, because I have gained about a hundred more blogs to read from all the really nice and awesome people I met there.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

NYS&W blogger bingo

BINGO!

well, the final preparations for the trip to Rheinbeck are under way here at the Platypus nest.

we have started packing, and making lists and will be leaving Friday morning to head to Albany.

I have my knitting all queued up, we have driving snacks all procured, friends cell phone numbers entered into my phone and I'll be dying my hair tonight.

for those of you looking for me for blogger Bingo, I will be using a cane (pictured below) have waist length brown/red hair (henna rocks) and will be wearing a dark blue hoody, ether on, or wrapped around my waist. in tow will me my awesome Husband/Sherpa (I love you honey!) he wears glasses and has shoulder length blond hair.

also there will be an unofficial ravely/blogger bingo meet up in front of the Food building (building E) both days at noon.

the cane:
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Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Woosh!

I'm moving right along with my projects lately, the butterfly washcloth is finished:

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I'll be including it in a home made spa package for my mother.

The other butterfly is coming along very nicely too!

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Just over half way, I've made a few mistakes, but that's ok, that's why I did a practice piece first. it still looks cool, and I can't wait until I can block it, I don't know where I'm going to put it yet, perhaps use it as a wall hanging.

Then if that weren't enough I've picked up the squirrel and oak mittens I started last spring for Bill.

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I had made a mistake and needed to tink back a little bit, but once I sat down to it I made pretty good progress. these will be my project for car knitting on the way to Rheinbeck.

Speaking of Rheinbeck; I received my Bingo card the other day!
I've already begun stalking checking out the blogs and bloggers on my card.

For those of you who have me on their cards, a description will be forthcoming, as soon as I decide what I'm going to wear.

Friday, October 12, 2007

FO and winged WIPS

Well, the oval doily is done! All I need to do now is wash, starch and block it. Unfortunately I don't know when I'm going to be able to do that. Hopefully I'll find a safe place for it within the next week or so.

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it looks a little better then the previous photo, but it would greatly benefit from a good blocking.

***

while at Jo-Ann's the other day I saw a spiffy dishcloth book (garden dishcloths to knit) after I got it home I cast on for the Butterfly dishcloth.

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So far so good, I think it will make a nice washcloth to put into a sort of bath gift basket for my mother for Yule, I already have a nifty recipe for fizzing bath salts, plus a bar of natural soap from the people at NYS&W and it will be perfect.

Speaking of butterflies and other winged creatures.
While surfing around Ravely (uh oh...) I spotted the most gorgeous filet crochet fairy pattern and fell in love, I really, really want to make this, but I've never done filet crochet before, so I looked up a bunch of tutorials, and then went looking for a slightly easier pattern to practice on.

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so far so good! It's the Filet Butterfly Doily from Celt's vintage crochet. I'm just about ready to start the actual butterfly part, and am quite excited.

I'm not entirely pleased with the way the filled mesh increases look at the end of the rows, but I'm sure I'll get better as I practice.

I seem to be in the middle of a major thread crochet jag, and the feather and fan shawl is still on hiatus, don't worry, I'll get back to it eventually.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Warm feet and hiking help

It's been a week of last minute hurried knitting and crochet.

It's been getting cooler out over here, and with cool weather comes cold feet.
Every year I make Bill a pair of slippers, and every year, without fail they are un-wearable by March.

For this year's pattern I chose the two needle slippers from the Irish Ewe.

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But I hate seaming, and I thought a seam right along the sole of the foot would be a bit uncomfortable, and a prime weak spot for wearing. So instead I used the Turkish cast on and knit these puppies in the round. I also double stranded the sole portion to add extra tightness to hopefully extend their life, it also made them extra squishy and warm. (although the tight gauge did hurt my hands, but luckily the soles knit up quickly.)

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I used 100% wool stash yarn left over from other projects; I call them his Superman slippers.


With the sudden freedom from work I have had plenty of time to do other things, including Hiking, one of Bill's and my favorite activities.
The weather was perfect this Sunday for a nice hike along the trails on Wellesley Island.
As we were making plans on Saturday night Bill mentioned we should bring water, (as we always do) but he didn't want to bring the whole backpack just for a couple of bottles. Luckily I had Ravely and remembered seeing a pattern for a water bottle sling just the pother day! (I do so love my Ravely!)

So that night I grabbed some cotton and my crochet hook and worked on Hidrate!

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The pattern calls for fingering, but I didn't have any fingering cotton on hand, and really wanted these done by Sunday afternoon, so I made a few changes and went to town.
They turned out rather nice, the pink one was my first try and I had a couple of sizing issues, but those got worked out on the blue one. Also, I knit faster than I crochet, so I actually knit the straps, instead of the crochet straps that were called for. I probably could have made them longer, the can go across the chest, but the bottle sits rather high up, I'll fix that when I make the next batch, as we usually carry bigger bottles that the small 16 oz ones these were made for.

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That has pretty much been the scope of my fiber arts over the last few days, although I have picked up the doily again and plan on finishing it before I pick up the shawl, I have far too many projects going right now for my tastes.

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Saturday Sky

a little late, but I was way to tired and headachy last night to fiddle.

this was taken shortly after a sudden downpour of rain, as the clouds began to break up.

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Saturday Sky taken Saturday October 6, 2007, 4:40pm, from the Bertrand's Motel parking lot

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Caught up

Only one more day left to work, and I will have more time to knit and write about knitting.
(And I can't forget Rhinebeck!)

Not much has changed between last post and this.
The shawl has gone on a slight hold, I'm finding it difficult for me to concentrate, and I think I need to get back into a really good audio book or something.
The doily has gone on hold as well, I found a mistake and had to rip out a round and a half to go fix it, and am now having trouble facing it and going back to redo all that I had done before.
Strangely my queue over on Ravely has been getting longer and longer...

I did crochet a grocery bad dispenser/holder thingy, although it's not all that spectacular:

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Pattern from here

I made a lot of changes to the pattern, mostly do to my ineptitude at crochet, but it does its job and doesn’t look like complete arse.

I've also been knitting a crap-ton of dishcloths.
Christmas is approaching, and my Grandmothers and Aunt have begun calling for more.

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These are the only dishcloths they will use, and last time I mad any was two years ago when I was still going to school. (Knitting made the long boring lectures go by so much quicker) and they are in need of more, so I'm cranking out a bunch of these.

Perhaps once I make a few more I will be able to get myself to go back to the doily and shawl.

Socks? What socks?

Oh... yeah...
Tasha's socks are on hold too, I'm going to try and finish them by Christmas so I can give them to her but the needles are smaller than I usually use, and they hurt my ands, and I think the Sock a Month KAL I was in burnt me out on socks for a while.
Sad really as I do love knit socks.

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