Saturday, December 30, 2006

It's finally snowing!!! 23 degrees and a beautiful fine snow is falling. This winter hasn't been a winter so far. I'm sure after the 5th or 6th storm I'll be cursing snow but right now it is so pretty. Today's project is to continue with the yarn inventory. Every bag will be opened, counted and all the info put into an Excel spreadsheet. It's fun rummaging through the bags, some of the yarn is 30-35 years old and still in good condition. I've worked my way through a lot of the oiled Irish Aran yarn brought back from a trip to Ireland 30 years ago but there is still some left. Amazing what is in that closet, everything from old Tahki to 2 ply jumper weight. Doubt I'll live long enough to use it all up.

Christmas in VA was a good family time. Photo is of mom with the red/white scrap lap quilt I made her. Perfect size for her to sit in her favorite chair and read. It's a 14 1/2 hour drive down to VA but worth the trip. Just seems longer and more traffic every time we drive it.
"Marina" is 6" short of finishing the second sleeve and blocking to wear. "Shirt Tail Hemmed Fair Isle" has first sleeve started, body done. Joe's all over rib has front done, back 3/4 and no sleeves. It's the car sweater since I don't have to look at it to knit. Three fair isle patterns with yarn all collected and ready and who knows what will inspire me going through the stash.

Happy New Year to all. Hoping the new year brings more finished projects than started ones!

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Two boy sweaters done! As predicted the blue sweater was a bit too big and the red a bit too small but the boys should get some wear out of them this winter. I didn't have the opportunity to measure them so we went on size 2T and 5T. Mr. Blue Sweater is growing quickly so his will be perfect next year or later winter. Mr. Red Sweater might get some of the winter out of it but it won't go wasted. My daughter has lots of friends to pass this along to. Next set of sweaters, I won't go by the generic measurements but make a trip to visit and break out the old tape measure. Kept waiting for security in kids clothing stores to come ask me why I was measuring all their sweaters!

Christmas gifts are all made. Once they are wrapped I'll get back to both sweaters - Beadwork and Marina. Very different knits and I swap off to rest the hands.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Pictured is the top of the shoulder on the Marina sweater with sleeve started. I'm not truly happy with how the motif flows down from the body to the sleeve but cannot figure out any other way to pick it up and have an even distribution of stitches. It's a fun sweater to knit and I'm glad to be back with it again. The Christmas sweaters and quilts are all finished and I'm now back to sweaters started on line in "KALs" - knit along groups. Great way to meet knitters from all over the world and share the experience of knitting a more difficult sweater.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

The quilt is a lap quilt made for Mom for Christmas. The photo shows the blocks up on the design wall prior to piecing them together. It's all together sewn together now, safety pin basted and ready for machine quilting. The days of hand quilting are long gone. The panel to the left of the quilt blocks is a challenge done last year. Each of us got a copy of a Christmas card and the leader cut it in four pieces vertically. I lucked out and got to recreate the part of the card that showed the lighthouse and seagull. Lots of fun but more difficult than expected.

Button, button, which button? The button band on Marina is done but NOT blocked yet. Sure am hoping that it lies flatter than it does unblocked. Might have to put a cinder block on top of it.

Photos are of buttons I'm previewing for the sweater. Sleeves still have to be knit so there is a ways to go before wearing it. Our local button shop closed recently after 25 years so I stocked up. Tell me over on the Marina Yahoo group which one you like.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Beadwork progresses but.... do NOT work on this pattern in poor evening light "thinking" there is an error but not getting up to go to better light and check. The diamond is incorrect beside the blue stitch needle in the photo. It has to be ripped 4-5 rows back. Don't know how it happened as I keep a magnet board with a copy of the chart held down by the magnet bar. As I go line by line, the bar is shifted to show the next line in the pattern. Also use a barrel type row counter but somehow got off between the two. Oh well I guess ripping is part of knitting? but it sure does waste time.

Fairly pleased with the hourglass pattern though it seems to "poof" where the waist of the hourglass comes together. it will probably block out okay. I still like the feel of the Patons Classic Wool. No sign of pilling or fuzziness so far. I'd like to try this is a Starmore Aran that calls for lighter weight. The gauge varies depending on the chart but overall I'm probably getting 6 sts to an inch. The sweater is turning out the size I wanted.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

The boys Aran sweaters are done and machine washed and dried to be sure they held up and didn't shrink or pill. The blue one is for a 5th birthday coming up in a couple of weeks. It's a good weight for this time of year and a bit big so he should get a year or two out of it. It is made out of Plymouth Encore Chunky on size 9 which is way larger scale than my last few years of knitting. The red sweater is the same yarn and is a good brick red, not orangey like in the photo. Gloomy rainy day in Maine today and not good light for picture taking. I was going to give them for Christmas gifts but the birthday is first and (along with a small toy) will be usable now. The red is for a 1 1/2 year old and it already looks too small. Better give it now before he outgrows it.

We went through the dozens of quilts and quilt tops in the house this morning trying to see if there were one that would work well for mom as a lap quilt Christmas gift. Lots of square wall hangings that didn't work, large quilts way too big, and class samples that look worn. There were a couple of UFOs (unfinished objects) that have possibilities but Joe and I took down the boxes of reds and off whites in case none of the UFS caught my fancy. Will probably spend the afternoon rotary cutting strips for a red/white scrap quilt. Have a good book called "Combing through the Scraps" by Karen Coombs that has a lot of graphic scrap quilts in it. I've been knitting so much lately, I've missed the quilting. Nice book if you like scrap quilting

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Finally!! I'm happy with the definition and pattern for the Jade Starmore "Beadwork" sweater. I played around a lot trying to make the more formal, finished look of the sweater fit into my current life style which is more jeans and fleece. Rather than quit working with the pattern, I changed the sweater design to a pullover worked in the round. I set it up with the charts from right to left as B A A A B C C C B A A A with the cable B at the sides so that tiny cable runs up the side "seam". Four stitches of B end up on each side of the sweater. I'm using Patons Classic Wool on US size 4 (3.5mm). It has a very silky feel to it and I was worried that the stitches wouldn't define well. As the photos show, the stitches do show!!! The color shows truer on the lighter color grey.

If you wonder what the little stitch markers are they are metal lock washers from Home Depot - cheap and plentiful rather than those nice colored rings I loose all the time. I'm not up to a full repeat of Chart C but the measurement so far shows 42-43" which is right where I wanted to be as a finished size.

All the swatching done for Beadwork was profitable as I learned a lot about the yarns being previewed. Also I swatched so much I've pretty well memorized the pattern and don't look at the charts very often. Still swapping knitting projects between a grandson's Aran which is being knit with a chunky super wash yarn and the Beadwork. What a difference in feel on the hands Can imagine that by the time I get back to the two ply jumper weight on the Fair Isle sweaters, it will feel like thread.

Rainy cold fall day again tomorrow and all the errands are run so I get to knit again tomorrow. Retirement sure is just what I was hoping it would be.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

The front steek of "Marina" is finally crocheted. It took two hours and my hands ached afterwards but it is done. Have to see if I machine sew the sleeve and neck steeks or crochet them. The photo shows the steek at the V neck of "Marina". The darker two vertical lines of turquoise are the crochet lines. Unfortunately the photo also shows that somehow I am a stitch off on the left side of being symmetrical. It also could be just the way the stitches are lying before blocking as close exam doesn't show an error, just in the photo?? I want to get the three needle shoulder bind off done and then work a while on the "Beadwork" sweater. That one is on the needles with the bottom diamond band done and the pattern set correctly for working in the round. It will be so odd to work with only one color.

The quilt photo is of a large lap quilt just back from Virginia Anne Quilts, a local woman who does excellent machine quilting. My hand quilting was never very good and I could never do it now with these aging hands that may be getting arthritis. The quilt is a recreation of the center of a king size wedding quilt made for my brother and sister in law 15 years ago. I even found enough of the exact same fabrics in the quilt fabric stash to make the lap size. The pattern is "Paramount Stars" by Mary Kay Ryan of Vermont. Excellent pattern and involved but not difficult. It is so pretty I'm toying with making a large one for us in blues. Think I'd better live to be 110 to finish all I want to do. Retirement sure is a joy especially now that all the gardens are put to bed for the winter and I never do much housework anyway.

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Boots, the cat, and the ornament/yarn box - I found this really nice fabric box at the local "Christmas Tree Shops". For a change, the store actually had Christmas items in it plus a ton of Halloween stuff. This box is lightweight red fabric with a zipper and cardboard inserts to mark off little bins to put ornaments in. Can you say perfect box for Fair Isle knitting and putting all those balls in their own little bin? Pretty nice idea for $1.99. Got two of course. Much easier to find then rooting through a big bag at each color change. Guess who found the box and managed to stuff herself into the corner. Why Miss Boots of course!! She is becoming much more of a people cat now that she is the only one in the house. I really miss Patter but he was the alpha cat and she lived in his shadow. Now she is making her presence - and voice heard.

Marina is up to five rows before the back neck steek. I'd like to get the sweater to the shoulder bind off this weekend and then work on "Beadwork" for a while. It feels so odd to be one hand knitting with one color on Beadwork and with a slightly thicker yarn. Cannot imagine what it would feel like with regular weight knitting worsted!

The perennial gardens are all cleaned up and mostly mulched for the winter. Flock of wild turkeys roamed through today, really pretty with the bright fall leaves behind them. It's beginning to get colder but no snow yet.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Progress on Marina continues. It is such a relaxing knit since the motifs continue across the rows instead of many charts across like the Sweaters from Camp sweater. I absolutely love the colors. Yesterday, we went into the shopping part of Freeport and found out the button shop was closing this Saturday. The shop is the first floor of an old house and absolutely stuffed with every button you can imagine. Picked up three different possible buttons for Marina, one purple, one blue and one kind of a mix. I'll miss that shop as you were always able to find just what you need. Taking mother in law, the button collector, in today and will pick up some wooden buttons for the stash.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

SFC - Short row sleeve cap. This was NOT fun but it was educational. First you pick up all stitches from around the sleeve except for those held on a holder for the underarm. Then, starting at the top of the shoulder cap, you work back and forth in pattern, decreasing by wrapping a stitch as the pattern rows turn. Hours of trying that - no way so I finally just "cheated" by knitting one of the rows over to the decrease and purling back in pattern for the next row. Break the yarn and move the next row's added stitches over to the needle. Repeat until cap is done knitting two together instead of short row wrap. Maybe one day I'll sit with a knitter who has done this before and see how it is really supposed to be done. BUT - the cap is done, ready to start the sleeve pattern, top down and decrease as usual along the way. I've learned so very much from this sweater especially the fact that it takes a long time to knit a Fair Isle.

Friday, September 08, 2006

No wonder I like the colors in Marina so much. They echo the colors in my gardens. The blue/green of the junipers, the light colors of the ornamental grass stems, the purples of the phlox and blues of the bachelor buttons. However, this knit is easier than the weeding.
Up to row 28 and very happy with the ease of the design, colors and the way the Jamieson and Smith yarn is acting on the 3.25mm Inox circular needle. And yes, I know my arrows are pointing different than in the photo but who is going to know unless we have a room full of Marinas?

The white cord at the bottom of the corrugated ribbing is simply to keep the rib from curling. Didn't want to steam the ribbing to flatten it out so just sewed it shut for now.

Have to get a 20" circular in 3.25mm to keep going on the Shirt Tail Hemmed sweater. NO WAY am I ever going to knit Fair Isle sleeves on double points. Hmmmm.... road trip up to Camden and Unique One Knit shop and an overnight camp stay on the ocean edge? Great time of year for it as the leaves are starting to turn and the leaf peeper crowds aren't here yet.

Monday, September 04, 2006

(First photo is with the corrected color - Jamieson #598 Mulberry)
Economy doesn't always pay off. Thought I could use a Jamieson "Bramble" in place of the J&S "Crowberry" in Marina. Cold rainy day yesterday so happily spent time starting the ribbing. By end of day I was up to start of the body of the sweater. Not a happy camper with Bramble as it is too light in contrast to the other darks it is near. Friend Shirley said Crowberry is more a grape color and of the same color value as the Indigo and Dark Green surrounding it. So..... ribbit, ribbit back to the Bramble. Might just ladder down to the Bramble for about 8 stitches and try knitting it in to see if I like it better. Won't matter since the Bramble has to come out anyway. I found some Jamieson Mulberry Color 598 which I'll preview. It's much closer in value. If it doesn't work, might try the only LYS with J&S nearby to see if there is a dark grapey color. I think it would be easier to color design your own entire sweater than to substitute one or two colors into a Starmore.

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Steeks!! Steeks!!! Don't we all love Steeks!! Not but they sure solve a lot of problems with Fair Isle sweaters. They eliminate purling back across a row with two colors and trying to read the charts backwards. They let you spit splice colors in the center of the steek and eliminate all those ends to sew in. And lastly, once your online guru knitter friends and a bunch of books help you out, you learn how to neatly crochet the steek center, cut and end up with a perfectly secured edge with no raveling.

Next steek will be planned a bit better for contrast of color in the center rows. this steek was 12 stitches wide with the center two the same color, pattern in this case with the outside two rows in background and the ones in between speckled. . Next time I think I would do the two center in darkest color and the one on each side in the lighter color. Would make finding the edges of the steek a lot easier.

One shoulder is three needle bound off, the other is next. Then on to pick up for neck ribbing and then for sleeves. The end is not in sight but it's a lot further along now that the steek cutting is done.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

The Neck Steek is started!!! The Shirt Tail Hemmed Fair Isle from "Sweaters from Camp" by Meg Swansen is finally done up to the neck. I've started the steek and the decreasing for the neck. I have learned so much making this sweater. It is a long knit, over 82,000 stitches plus the ribbing so far. If we ever think of sweaters as how many stitches there are, we would probably never make one!
I start short rows for the first time in 12 more rows. I'm really glad the online knit groups exist since there is always someone, somewhere who has done short rows before and are willing to help. Cloudy, rainy day today so might even make it up to the short rows. Weeding is done for the day and housework doesn't interest me as usual so knit on.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

I've joined another online Knit Along, this time to make Jade Starmore's "Beadwork". The KAL is at We're all in the middle of chosing fiber for this beautiful cardigan which is one color and uses purl stitches to make the sweater appear to be beaded.

I'm very lucky and live about a half hour from Halcyon Yarns in Bath, Maine. This is a huge yarn shop originally set up for weavers but knitters now have as much space. Always fun to drive up and visit the shop plus see all the yarns in person. I took all the Beadwork swatches and talked with staff and other knitters. We all agreed the only one that really worked was the Harrisville Shetland. Sat in the store and knitted a small swatch with their in house Jagger 2/8 yarn and fell in love. Home now with two cones of color #9, pewter, and now will knit and post a larger swatch. This is right on gauge and also has a nice sheen to it. Ruth, the store knitting guru and teacher, told me she knits it right off the cone as it is already washed unlike the Harrisville Shetland. I'm going to knit a swatch off the cone and also knit a swatch with some pre washed to see the difference.

Photo is of all the swatches done to date plus the cone of pewter Jagger. Amazing how many yarns just did not work for a small gauge that needs to be firm and show stitches well.


Would useJagger Spun Maine Line Wool 2/8's

Fiber Content: wool fingering weight 2 plyGauge (stitches/in...needle size): 6.5 to 7 on size 2 to 3 Good color range

Price in Size: 1 lb cone, approx 2240 yds Price: $31.95

Price in Size: 275 yd mini-cone Price: $7.50

Nice tight twist and has a sheen to it

Stitches popped very well, fabric is firm but still soft (if that makes any sense)

Halycon Web site says "These versatile, high quality worsted spun yarns have become staples of commercial and recreational knitters, weavers, and others. Made in Maine of soft, medium grade wool, these yarns will easily make a way into clothing and other products. As a worsted spun yarn, it is smoother and shinier than woolen spun yarns, such as Harrisville. They also won't full as much when washed/finished, so plan on a closer set or tighter gauge (finish your swatch to determine if you like the finished piece). JaggerSpun is dyed with the finest dyes possible and mothproofed for a long life. Excess dyes may be present in some colors so sample first. If excess dye is present, skein the yarn and rinse until the water runs clear. Deep purples may not be colorfast when exposed to sun, so avoid prolonged exposure to bright light."

Monday, August 14, 2006

How much better can it get? Photo says it all, RV trip, mountain lake in the mountains of NH, sitting to knit by the lake. Started the day at a county fair in Skowhegan, then a cross country trek to the Rangeley Lakes for lunch, through the mountains to NH. Tomorrow we go to Saint Gaudens National Historic Site (home of a sculptor) to tour the gardens and see the garden sculptures. Other reason is to pick up Joe's Golden Age National Parks pass since he just turned 62!

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Just back from another short RV trip, this time up to Greenville and Kokadjo, Maine and then over to St. Andrews, New Brunswick. We cut west to east through an amazing expanse of unoccupied forests, broken occasionally by old farms. Never did see any moose but Canada geese are not in any danger of becoming extinct. They are everywhere. Stayed at a campsite at Northern Pride Lodge right on First Roach Pond at Kokadjo. Sat by the lake and knit and read after taking a very long hike. No noise, not many people, just a night sky almost white with stars. Moosehead Lake is still unspoiled and worth the trip. Town of Greenville is not the quaint logging town it used to be, it's two blocks of stores now being mostly tourist shops.

We returned to St.Andrews, New Brunswick, Canada for another visit to Kingsbrae Gardens, 27 acres of every perennial and ornamental tree you can imagine, all in full bloom. We spent several hours just walking around enjoying the color and variety and then had lunch at the tea room, a sampler of salmon and fruit and pastries - not very calorie wise but delicious. Walking through St. Andrews, I was again drawn to the Cottage Crafts knit shop and couldn't resist some light weight off white wool yarn. This should be perfect for "Beadwork", a Jade Starmore design. I liked the colors of the one ply yarns though there is no where near the variety and depth of color of Jamieson and Smith.

Somehow just happened to stop in Harvey, NB at Briggs and Little yarn store and another sweater worth of yarn made it into the truck. Bought "Knits from the North Country" a truly wonderful design/pattern book by all Canadian designers. Link is here to more details on the patterns - I go the suggested yarn and colors for the "Prairie Sunset" sweater Good gift for mother in law for Christmas.

Since the line at US customs to get out of Canada was hours long, we drove up to Vanceboro to cross back in. Good move as we were the only one at the border! Customs went into the camper to look around but they said they enter all campers. The border patrol people don't even blink at the amount of yarn in the truck. I think they are used to it since Vanceboro is so close to Harvey. Truck camper worked flawlessly again. Mileage is now up to 12.1 mpg fully loaded. This rig has been perfect for us, letting us get into small areas without the worry of trying to move or park a big rig. Time to plan the next trip!

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Marina is a sweater design by Alice Starmore. This fall I'll be joining an online KAL (knit along) for making this sweater. I'll be using the Workbasket version and the original colors. In online discussions, some thought the colors were very muted. I think the opposite and think they are a bit bright for this woman who likes mostly blues and greens. Photos show the yarns for the ribbing and then all the yarns. These are all the original colors except for one of the purple heathers. I had a Jamieson yarn called Bramble that was too close not to use up. Trying hard not to start it early as I'm still working and enjoying the Shirt Tail Hemmed Fair Isle.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Remaking a quilt can be fun - especially if you still have the original fabrics. "Paramount Stars" a pattern designed by Mary K. Ryan of VT is a beautiful quilt. I made the 96" square quilt for my brother and sister in law for their wedding present 15 years ago. It has been on their bed ever since and is just about worn out. The colors are faded so it is hard to see the colors or pattern. It's been washed so much it is fragile and torn in places with batting coming out in others. It is actually so good to know something I made has been loved and used so much. SIL asked if I could repair the quilt. After discussions with local friend quilters the decision is basically no way. However - I loved the fabrics used in it obviously since I still have some! My sewing room is bright but gets no direct sun and the fabrics are sorted in large light proof tubs. The colors are bright and look new. I've already remade the center star and working on the first feathered border. I won't be making the whole quilt again but a laptop size. My hand quilting days are gone, so this will be machine quilted and hopefully good for another 15 years. Photos show old faded quilt and new center pieced but not quilted yet.

Thursday, June 29, 2006

The talk of knit project storage containers on KBTH (Knitting Beyond the Hebrides), an online knitting group reminded me of a recent goodie bought for "Marina". This nice canvas collapsing box with a handle and an outside net storage pouch was $3.99 at Christmas Tree Shops. The box is 13" long 8" deep and 8" wide with a divider in the middle. I got two (of course).

It's so muggy today it is like a steam bath. Cleaned up a large BBQ grill, weeded a tiny bit and now going up to the FROG (finished room over garage) turn on the AC and play with sticks and string.

Friday, June 16, 2006

Wendy 5 ply Guernsey wool in shade 674, the lighter of the traditional blues, was used for this sweater started quite some time ago. The pattern is an old Plymouth Yarn Company aran pullover #IN34. I was trying to use the Wendy in place of an alpaca and and just adjust the size knit to fit me instead of a man. Well...... even though I swatched and the swatch was perfect, the sweater was less than. Ended up at 9 stitches to an inch on size #3 US circular. Sweater measures 36" around - not in this lifetime!!

So as pretty as the pattern is, it will get ripped, re-swatched and hopefully used for the KAL "Beadwork" to start this fall. I HAVE to learn to remeasure as I go along more often. At least the cable patterns really pop with a tight gague and this yarn.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Since the FLAK is done and the SFC Shirt Tail is a long, slow knit, I knew there would be no way to keep something new off the needles. Playing with starting a FLAK for hubby or joining in with the Marina Fair Isle knit. I'll be looking this cold, rainy day at what I have in the stash that will work for Marina and what I would need. Here is a spread sheet you can copy for your planning needs. When you print this, set your printer to landscape mode to get all the columns. It will print out darker than it appears on the screen and you will be able to read all the info.

It is always hard chosing the next project since you live with it a long time!

Sunday, May 28, 2006

The FLAK is done!!! I've not had a sweater fit me so well before and it isn't even blocked yet! The photo makes it look a bit out of square but it isn't really. I learned a lot making this sweater and look forward to making another one with different cables. I added cables down the side where a seam would have been under the arms if this hadn't been knitted in the round.

I've been skimming Janet's new Aran design book and an anxious to start a new Aran. However I WILL wait until I have finished the SFC Fair Isle. This FLAK took 8 skeins of 220 yard skeins of Cascade 220 in a royal blue type color. I would use this yarn again for an Aran as it does show the cables well.

80 degrees today in Maine so won't be using this sweater for awhile. Will get it blocked and ready for fall. Thanks for all the encouragement and participation from the FLAK group.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

We're back from our RV trek down south to visit my mom and test out the new truck camper. Mom is physically much better in the two months she has been in the assisted living center. It is amazing what nutritious food prepared for you and served with no work on your part will do. She's gained some weight, is more stable and doesn't need the walker anymore. She's miserable being there but it is currently the best place for her. We took her out for most of 5-6 days doing fun tourist things and lots of family time.

See the RV trip at I'm having problems posting photos to that site but will keep trying. Not a lot of knitting was done on the trip as we stayed so busy outside. Basically we ate supper and slept! I was able to get about six inches done on the body of FLAK and am pretty pleased on how it is coming. Don't like my bind off row on the neckline but didn't sew in the yarn tail so will get another chance at it. It just seems to roll too much - course it isn't blocked yet either. I added a braid and two side honeycombs down the center on each side under the underarm. It's so much fun just playing with design on this FLAK. I cannot wait until I start the next one after I work my way through Janet's new book. Took the book on the trip also but it's a heavy book and I hit myself in the face a couple of times going to sleep while trying to read it - snooze!

I took the SFC Fair Isle Shirt Tail Hem sweater with me also but never got but about 5 rows done. No way could I knit that one, watch the scenery and follow a chart at the same time. I could knit on FLAK as the cables are easy to memorize. Now that we are home and there is a week of rain coming that will keep us out of the perennial garden cleanup, I should get back to both projects. Poor Spring Forward sweater is a distant third at the moment, but will be finished.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Back to working on the Shirt Tail Hemmed sweater from Sweaters From Camp. It is so pleasurable to see this sweater grow. It is VERY slow since I've been unable to memorize this long a pattern. I've done three repeats now as well as finished off the hem. I'm very pleased with the colors and how they are playing against each other. It was curling so badly I took a wet washcloth, laid it over the hem and steamed it with a pretty hot steam iron. Didn't felt or mat the yarn and now it lays flat and is so much easier to work on. I still alternate the SFC and the FLAK since I could memorize that chart.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Terri asked what I don't like about the Spring Forward cardigan front. Please understand I think Janet's design sense is awe inspiring and she is helping so many new knitters make very complicated sweaters. However, for my personal taste there is too much moss stitch on the front near the button bands. I decided to add cables to this area which was a bit tricky on where to start the cable as you are increasing stitches for the V neck. As you can see from the photo (hard to see), I chose to start the cable AFTER the increases were done over where the cable was going. Now that I've done it, I'm not happy with it because it looks like what it is - just stuck in there!!! Do you think that is why Janet didn't add cables to the front? (smile) I think I'm going to frog and try to start a little cleaner and add the two twist cable on each side of the rope. This is all after FLAK is finished and SFC is a bit further along. The SFC is going to be a long, long knit and I don't mind having another project and switch between the two.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

SFC Knit along continues. I get 4-6 rows a night done lately. I figure when we take off on our first RV trip it will be the only knitting project to go for the ride- enforced finishing! Took the RV to mother in laws Wednesday, picked up salads and had lunch on Kennebunkport Beach. The photo is of the truck by the jetty leading to Kennebunkport's tiny harbor, open Atlantic ocean in the background. I LOVE Maine.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Sweater photo is the neck of FLAK with the large neck, decreased down to good size for me. I KNEW it was too big - sigh... but worked around it. Sleeves are down to ribbing on one and two inches to ribbing on the other. The neck is tighter than it looks when the body is pulled around correctly.

Truck is our new toy, used F350 pickup with a Lance 1121 truck camper body. Having mom in the assisted living center just increased the urge to travel before we can't! I don't want to be in a health care home myself regretting not seeing the places in the USA I've always longed to see. Besides there are cubby holes for knit and quilt projects all over the truck.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Progress photos -

Fair Isle is the Shirt Tail Hemmed sweater from "Sweaters from Camp". Pretty complicated chart to follow so progress is slow but very satisfying. I have lots of FIs planned and have started collecting fiber.

Red is Janet Szabo's "Spring Forward" cardigan from a Twist and Turns issue. It's ready to start the sleeves. I added a cable in the moss stitch area on the front cause I couldn't stand that much blank space. The cables do line up and all is straight on the sweater though the photo doesn't look like it.

Blue is the FLAK , Follow the Leader Aran also from Janet Szabo. Second sleeve is close to the cuff as is the first. Ready to start the body probably this weekend if there is time at our knitting weekend/retreat.

Really enjoying retirement. Worked in the gardens doing winter cleanup today - first time it hit 50 degrees with low wind. Some of the herbs are showing - bad since I'm sure we have at least one more big snow storm to come.