"Properly practiced, knitting soothes the troubled spirit, and it doesn't hurt the untroubled spirit either." ~ Elizabeth Zimmerman

10/10/18

WIP Wednesday

I'm working on the cardigan for Layette set 35. I'm loving the bright colors in this variegated yarn.



I'm still working on the second of the socks I'm making for Frank. I'm about 20 rows from finishing the stranded pattern.

I am having a somewhat miserable week. Last Sunday I took myself to my favorite Urgent Care clinic and was diagnosed with Shingles. Shingles is no fun. I've got severe pain that starts in the middle of my spine and radiates around my left side to my abdomen accompanied by a very painful rash that has spread around me. My skin feels like it's on fire. I broke out in the rash Thursday morning. By Saturday evening I was pretty sure I had Shingles. Thus, hauling my ass to the doctor early the next morning. I've been given a prescription for an antivirus medication which is supposed to cut the length I have this torture. Other than that, it's just waiting until it works it's way through to healing.

I'm contagious as long as the blisters of the rash are blisters. I'm staying home this whole week. I can't give someone else Shingles, but I can give them Chicken Pox if they haven't had them before. So, I've been trying to knit and stuff. It's hard, though, cuz the pain distracts and makes it hard to do anything.

When I am well again I will be getting the Vaccine . You can get Shingles over and over again. I don't want this ever again.

It's a beautiful sunshiny day today. I'm hoping the afternoon will be warm enough that I can sit out on the deck for awhile. I could use the fresh air.

Live long and prosper. \\//

10/4/18

Yesterdays WIP Wednesday

I wanted to post this yesterday but I didn't have the time. So I'll do it today.

I have completed the knitting of the first sock and have started the second one.



I am not completely happy with the first sock. As you can see in the photo, I have a problem where the needles join in the corrugated rib cuff. I can't figure out how to make that column of stitches even in size with the rest of the columns. I'm very frustrated because the same thing is happening with the second sock. The body of the sock is fine at the join. It will block nice and flat. The floats are perfect on the inside. So, anyone got any advice on that cuff problem?

I've also been doing a bit of beading. I stumbled across something new in the beading world. It's called Peyote With A Twist Not Crochet, or PWAT for short. It's a way of making peyote tubes that look like bead crochet.



I am learning how to do it. There are lots of cool patterns being created for it too. Tons on Etsy.

This technique came out in the August issue of Bead and Button magazine (though that's not where I came across it. I didn't get that issue). I found it here on the internet while looking for something else. So far, I like it. It's fast becoming popular too. If you're interested, there's a very nice video that teaches how to do it here:


I am wondering how the gal who invented it did so. What was her thinking that led her to do this? I'm amazed by some peoples thought processes.

I managed to strain my back over the weekend. Ugh. I'm in a lot of pain, but I think it will heal fairly quickly. All I did was sit in an uncomfortable chair for about an hour. Judging by the pain, you'd think I'd tried carrying a 500 pound rock or something. Ice packs and pain killers are my friends right now.

Our weather is getting colder each week. We had a fairly heavy frost on Tuesday night. Killed off my Marigolds for sure. Winter is coming.

Live long and prosper. \\//

9/28/18

Layette Set #34

Another one done. I didn't have to do the blanket this time. A pretty little pink blanket was donated to KnitWits, so I made it into a Layette set.



Cardigan



Pattern: Super Natural Stripes by Fawn Pea

Size: 0-3 months

Yarn: Caron Easy Care Acrylic
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Off White

Yarn: Caron Jumbo
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Spicy Ombre

Yarn: Red Heart With Love
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Bubble Gum

Needles: Circular size 5 and 8

Started: September 10, 2018
Finished: September 17
I love the pinks in this project. A nice change after all the brown. Back of cardigan.



Nothing fancy about the button. I sewed it on with yarn. I split the plies apart and used just one ply and a small tapestry needle that would fit through the holes in the button.



Hat



Pattern:  Chibi Striped Baby Hat by Chiaki Hayashi

Size: 0-3 months

Yarn: Caron Easy Care Acrylic
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Off White

Yarn: Caron Jumbo
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Spicy Ombre

Yarn: Red Heart With Love
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Bubble Gum

Needles: Circular size 5 and 7

Started: September 18, 2018
Finished: September 20, 2018

Booties



Pattern:  My own

Size: 3-6 months

Yarn: Caron Easy Care Acrylic
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Off White

Yarn: Caron Jumbo
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Spicy Ombre

Yarn: Red Heart With Love
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Bubble Gum

Needles: Circular size 7

Started: September 25, 2018
Finished: September 27, 2018

Back to working on the socks.

Live long and prosper. \\//





9/26/18

Layette Set #33

Geez, I had a hard time getting this post done. Everything was working so slow on the internet. Sweet Hubby suggested rebooting the modem when he got home from school. It fixed the problem. I wish I'd thought of that sooner. Would have decreased the frustration.

Layette set #33 is done.



Cardigan



Pattern: Unnamed design by Me

Size: 3-6 months

Yarn: Red Heart Super Saver
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Caffe Latte

Yarn: Red Heart Wintuk 4ply Knitting Worsted
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Off White

Needles: Circular size 5 and 7

Started: July 17, 2018
Finished: August 1, 2018

Comments: This cardigan is from a pattern I've been writing. I hope to have it published before the end of the year. I've been trying to come up with a clever name for it. I love this stitch pattern.



I found some adorable sheep buttons for it.



The back looks pretty nice too.



Hat



Pattern: Chibi Striped Baby Hat by Chiaki Hayashi

Size: 3-6 months

Yarn: Red Heart Super Saver
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Caffe Latte

Yarn: Red Heart Wintuk 4ply Knitting Worsted
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Off White

Needles: Circular size 7

Started: August 7, 2018
Finished: August 11, 2018

Comments: I used the same hat pattern as always. Just adjusted the cuff and used the stitch pattern from the cardigan.

Booties



Pattern: My own.
Size: 3-6 months

Yarn: Red Heart Super Saver
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Caffe Latte

Yarn: Red Heart Wintuk 4ply Knitting Worsted
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Off White

Needles: Circular size 7

Started: August 14, 2018
Finished: August 15, 2018

Comments: I should write this pattern down and publish it. It's very flexible to being changed to accommodate matching the cardigans I've been making.

Blanket


Pattern: My own.
Size: 36 by 30 inches

Yarn: Red Heart Super Saver
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Caffe Latte

Crochet Hook: Size G

Started: September 22 , 2018
Finished: September 22, 2018

Comments: This is the last piece of this fleece fabric. Yay! I was getting tired of knitting with brown.



I was going to go all fancy on the edging cuz I found a cute one with polka dots, but realized I would be happier with a little bit plainer, and perhaps more masculine edging. So it's just a couple rounds of single crochet.

Since this is also Wednesday, here are the current WIPs that are getting my attention.

I've made a 34th set and am working on the booties for it now in glorious pink. A nice change from brown.



I'm making progress on the first of the pair of socks for Frank.



I am working on the heel flap. The pattern has vertical stripes here, but making them is incredibly fiddly so I decided to just make a plain one. Horizontal stripes would be cool though. Hmmm.....

Summer is gone. It's autumn in North Idaho. The leaves are changing color, and the temps have cooled down considerably. I feel like I've been cheated of the best parts of summer because it was so unbearably hot the whole time, and from the last week in July until the end of August I couldn't go outside and enjoy my deck because of the smoke from the wild fires. Phooey. Winter is on its way.

Live long and prosper. \\//

9/15/18

New WIP

Christmas is coming so I figure I better get the present knitting going now or forget about it. I have started a pair of stranded socks for the son-in-law.



The pattern is from the book Socks Socks Socks and called Bob's Socks. However, these will be Frank's socks. The above picture is how they looked this morning when I got up. I decided to spend the morning working on them. About 2 hours and several rows later I discovered I made a HUGE mistake in the very first row I'd knit this morning. I had to take it all out. So now it sits on the coffee table where I glare at it. No progress today. I will give it another go after I'm done writing this.

Our weather has been good. It cooled off to perfect temps of upper sixties and low seventies. We even got a couple days of rain that knocked all the smoke out of the air. It's been very nice. We had frost earlier in the week, so summer is over. The leaves are turning already.

Sweet Hubby is doing well in school. He's enjoying it too. This week he made a robot move. He was very very excited about it. He's enjoying the homework and he's been "hired" to work on a research project too. He'll get undergrad wages (don't know what that is yet) for about 10 hours work a week.

He has also been told they are arranging to give him a teaching fellowship, which is kind of like a scholarship, but he will have to teach a class or two. It's not a lot of money, but it will come in handy. The fellowship also includes free tuition, so that is good.

I got a new knitting book, Lithuanian Knitting.



It's a neat book. It's half about the history and importance of knitting in Lithuania, and half patterns for mittens, gloves, and socks. I did not get this from Amazon. I went there looking for it first, but the price was over $3000! Um, no. Nuh huh. No way, no how.



That is a ridiculous price. Not paying it. I found it on Schoolhouse Press's web site for $34.99. Much better price.

Some day I'm gonna be knitting like a Lithuanian.

Live long and prosper. \\//

9/10/18

I Can Knit Like A Latvian

I think it was 4 years ago (?) I decided I wanted to learn how to knit those fancy Latvian/Norwegian style fairisle mittens that are done with fingering weight yarn and small knitting needles that look so incredibly fabulous in pictures. I'd acquired a few books about them over the years. In November 2014 I started with the Warm Hearted mittens, but it didn't take very long for me to figure out they were a little over my head and I needed to start with something easier. So I put them in hibernation until further notice.

Then life got in the way and I put the whole idea on the back burner. Last year the idea came back, and if you will recall, I decided to do a pair of children sized mittens for my first project. I took them on the Star Trek cruise with me and worked on them pretty faithfully until done.



More time went by and then around May I joined the Knit Like a Latvian group on Ravelry and was inspired to get back to the Warm Hearted mittens.

I ripped out what I'd already done before hibernation and started over. They were a HUGE challenge for me, but I got help from folks in the group, my books, plus Google videos and articles. Eventually, I figured out the proper way to knit them. I am so excited because I've finished them!



PatternWarm-Hearted Mittens by Yvette Noel

Size: Womens Medium

Yarn: Knitivity Knitterman's Fingering Blog Reader Special
Content: 100% Superwash Wool
Color: Variegated fuschia, violet, white, and brown

Yarn: Cascade Yarns® Heritage
Content: 75% Superwash Merino Wool, 25% Nylon
Color: White

Needles: Circular size 1

Started: May 30, 2018
Finished: September 8, 2018

Comments: I learned a lot of new things making these. Some of them have improved my knitting overall. I have to say the second mitten went way faster than the first one. I would not say they are good for a first time fairisle mitten project, but good for learning the more advanced techniques needed to make them. 

Mittens in the style of the Balkan Islands (Latvia being one of them) usually have one stitch pattern for the back, one for the palm, at least one for the cuff (sometimes more), and one for the thumbs. In the case of these mittens all the stitch patterns are fairly complicated. I knit them exactly as written. The instructions are fairly well written. Better than a lot I've looked at.

This is the back of the mittens.



Here is a close up of the back stitch pattern.



This is the palm side. I love this stitch pattern.



A close up of the palm stitch pattern.



Close up of the cuff stitch pattern.



This particular cuff includes 2 Latvian braids, which I found very easy and fun to make.



This is the back side of the thumb.



This is the inside of the thumb. One of the interesting things about these style of mittens is they have stripes on the sides. This hides the jog one normally gets when knitting stranded patterns in the round. You can see that in this thumb. The round started with the center column of colored stitches.



I am quite happy with them, but not happy enough to be entering them in the fair. They will get hauled around for a bit in my knitting bag to show them off to all my friends, and then go to KnitWits.



It's time to start my Christmas knitting. I've decided on socks for the son-in-law. I think I'm going to see what's available in Latvian sock patterns.

Live long and prosper. \\//