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

5/22/20

WIPs Report

I have WIPs to share. First is a new baby cardigan for KnitWits I finally got started. I had this funky idea. The fleece I have for this to go with has brightly colored bears over a hounds tooth check pattern in pink and white. It inspired this.



The bears are purple, lime green, blue, and yellow. I chose the purple and green for the first set. I kind of like it.

The second WIP is the beginning of a second Kep. I joined the Knit Along being held on the Kep Facebook group.



The first week we make the cuff band. I've been having a hard time with it. Lots of stress in my life right now. I cast on 5 times before I got it right. Brain just would not work right. Once I got it cast on, everything smoothed out. I got this far. The tan is too light. You can hardly see it. I don't like it. So last night I ripped back and took the tan out.



I looked in my stash for a suitable brown replacement, but there isn't any. So I decided to use some of the leftovers from my Margaret Tudor sweater I made last year.



It isn't want I wanted to begin with, which was natural sheep colors, but it's what I have. So I'm going with it. It looks much better, contrast-wise, then the tan did. I'll be happy with it.

I am going camping this weekend and will be taking both of these projects with me.

This is the baby cardigan I've started for a nephew and his wife who are going to have a baby boy later this year.



It's a Drops pattern. Not an easy one because the instructions are not that well written. They assume you are an advanced knitter. I've got it sorted out. The pattern has a cardigan, pants, hat, socks, and mitts. I have until August to get this done.

Going camping for the 3 day weekend. Trying a new-to-us park. Looking forward to getting away for a little bit. Will be back Monday.

Live long and prosper. \\//

5/13/20

Black and White Plaid

As promised, the finished necklace. It feels so wonderful to be able to bead again. This makes the surgery completely worth it.



Pattern: Squared Hounds Tooth by Bev Baines

Technique: Peyote With a Twist-Not Bead Crochet

Size: 20 inches, plus or minus

Beads: Size 11 Miyuki round beads
Color: Black (401) and White (402)

Started: April 22, 2020
Finished: May 10, 2020

Comments: This is actually a bracelet pattern, but I thought it would look great as a necklace. I am right. I love the way it turned out.

The designer named it Hounds Tooth, but it looks more like Plaid to me.



It was very labor intensive. I think I put at least 60 hours in to it.



I used a silver toggle clasp and bead caps. I made the end caps in peyote stitch.



If you are interested in this pattern, it can be found in the Facebook group Peyote With a Twist-Not Crochet. The pattern for the beaded end caps is there too. The patterns are free. They are only available to group members.



It is raining today, hard. We've had more than half an inch since it started last night. We needed it.

I had a nice Mothers Day. My daughters gave me flowers and chocolates. I spent the day finishing up the above necklace. Most of my time was involved with trying to find something to fill the peyote tube so it wouldn't collapse. I went back and forth to the hardware stores in Rathdrum (we have 2 and I did wear a mask) buying pieces of rope. I got 1/2 inch first. Way too big. Then I tried 3/8th inch but it wasn't quite big enough. So I went back for 7/16 inch, but there was no rope in that size, so I settled for a piece of flexible plastic tubing. It was too big too. I ended up using the 3/8th inch, though I still feel it's just a tad too small.

For dinner, my daughter went to Nadine's and got take out for us. I had the Shepherds Pie and it was divine! It was nice not to have to cook too.

Husband is still working on his thesis, as well as homework. It's finals week, and graduation was going to be next weekend, though they've cancelled it this year because of the virus. He is not done with his thesis yet. They've extended his deadline into June, and would have let him walk in the graduation ceremony if they had one.

Live long and prosper. \\//

5/12/20

Diamond Dog

Zoey has a new sweater! I call this Diamond Dog. I have never seen a dog who loves wearing sweaters as much as she does. She gets so excited when I ask her if she wants to put one on. She'll run to the sweater drawer, I open it, she grabs one and drops it on my feet. Then she hops up on the bed wiggling so hard with excitement that it's all I can do to get it on her. She's such a silly girl.




Pattern:
Diamond Dog by me. Not available. I won't be writing up and publishing this pattern because dog sweaters have to be custom made according to your dogs size and I just don't want to deal with it. What I will tell you is I used Patons Basic Coat pattern in size large, customized for Zoey, and knit a fairisle diamond chart I got from a hat pattern.

Size: Large, customized for Zoey.

Yarn: Caron One Pound
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Baby Blue

Yarn: Premier Yarns Everyday Worsted Multis and Prints
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Winding River

Yarn: Red Heart Classic
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: White

Needles: Circular size 5 and 7

Started: March 30, 2020
Finished: May 7, 2020

Comments: I just kind of winged this thing. I didn't even do a test swatch. I just picked the stitch pattern and started knitting. 

Close up of stitch pattern

I changed the foreground color (baby blue and white) at every pattern repeat. The background color is a variegated yarn. 



I did not do this in the round, so I had to sew a seam. Next time, I'll do it in the round.




For the first time ever, I mitered the corners on the back end.



I'm pretty lucky I got gauge, and it turned out good. It fits her perfectly.

More detailed pics. Side.



Back/Top



Bottom/Underside



You'll notice I didn't carry the diamond pattern all the way across. I decided to leave the bottom in one color. I wanted this to be easy peasy. Putting leg holes in fairisle wasn't something I wanted to face.



This is most of what the pictures were like of Zoey. She's a silly girl and very hard to get to sit still long enough to get a decent one. I have a lot of pictures of her back side too, as she suddenly runs away from me.

We had some awesome weather over the last weekend. I got to really enjoy the deck. Today it's dark and threatening. Rain is predicted from this evening through the next weekend. That's a good thing because pollen season has arrived. Yesterday I was sitting at the table and noticed my phone screen getting tiny little yellow dots falling on it.

My trees have started flowering but they are not very good looking. The plum is not only sparsely flowered, but it's sparsely leaved too. I'm a little worried about it. Most of my wild Service Berry bushes had no blooms, nor does it look like the Choke Cherries are going to bloom either. No Choke Cherry jelly this year.

I did not knit much the last few days because I got bit by the beading bug. It is so nice to be able to see my beading now! I got going on that Peytwist necklace and worked on it for hours every day. I bet I've put 60 hours into it. It's done. I finished it yesterday. I'll blog about it tomorrow.

In the meantime...

Live long and prosper. \\//

4/30/20

Pandemic Journal 4/30/2020

So the Covid 19 Pandemic continues on. All in this house are tired of it, but staying at home is the best thing to do. I did get out today for about 30 minutes to pick up some refills from the drug store and restock some items from the liquor store next door. It felt so good to be out. I also picked up lunch at Paul Bunyans and brought it home. We like their burgers.

I've got an update on the WIPs. I've finished the main knitting on the dog sweater.



There are lots and lots of ends to weave in. One of the prices one must pay to knit fairisle. I sat out on the deck and worked on it after lunch. I'm really liking this thing, ends and all.

I got the grafting done on the cowl. It looks awful.


The white row between 2 blue rows just above where the yarn end is on the side is the grafted row. It's fine, but the 2 blue rows are all loose and ugly. I'm going to carefully pull on the leg of each stitch to even them out and then weave in the excess I guess. Not a job I'm looking forward to, but I can't leave it like it is. My pride in workmanship is too strong.

I started a baby cardigan.



I've got a funky design idea involving hounds-tooth check and some stripes. We'll see how it goes.

I've been spending the most of my time on the plaid peytwist. It's about 9 inches long. Only 11 inches left to go.



It takes 2 hours or so to make one inch. It's very slow going, but I'm enjoying it. I'm really enjoying being able to see what I'm doing. So glad I got that eye surgery.

Next week I'm supposed to have the monthly KnitWits meeting. But with the Pandemic, the senior center will not be open, so we're not having one. Instead, our leader is going to have those who need to drop off finished items and pick up more yarn come to her house. She has a huge one and it should be easy to maintain social distancing this way. I'm not going cuz I have plenty of yarn and I can wait to turn in my one baby set.

Another thing I've been doing during this shut in is watching all the seasons of Survivor. I love that show. I started at season 1, episode 1, and am working my way through them. I'm up to season 12 already. It's bringing back some great memories.

I've been able to spend quite a bit of time outside on the deck. It's been wonderful. We had a few days in a row where it was very nice out. Then it rained a couple days ago, and it was nice today. Rain is on it's way, along with thunderstorms for tomorrow and Saturday. I hope it's dry on Sunday. I'd like to do some work in the yard.

This afternoon I found my bag of fabric and patterns for the blouses I was going to make last summer (it all got put away cuz company was coming over). I might get it out and do some sewing over the next couple weeks. I could use a new blouse or two.

That's what I've been doing.

Live long and prosper. \\//

4/23/20

Yesterdays WIP Wedensday-4/23/2020

I had intended to do this yesterday, but instead I spent my time beading, and doing house cleaning kinds of things. Here's what I'm working on this week.



It's a Peyote With A Twist project. I actually started doing another one a couple weeks ago or so that is black and white Houndstooth Check(HC), but it was not turning out right. I was messing up somehow. This pattern above, which I call black and white plaid, but the designer has named Square Houndstooth Check, is an easier pattern to read. It has a 20 row repeat, whereas the HC has a 47 row repeat and is much more complicated to read. Besides, the plaid is super cool looking.

I spent most of the day trying to figure out what I was doing wrong. I figured it out, and now the pattern is coming out correctly. I was reading the word chart incorrectly, for one, and when I was getting to the edge join part, I was doing it wrong too.

There are basically two types of Peytwist patterns. Single and Double Join. These two patterns are both Double Join, which I'd not done before. I was going into the join edge at the correct place, but coming out again to start the next row from the wrong place. I won't tell you how I was reading the word chart wrong cuz it's embarrassing. I'm just glad I figured it all out and I'm doing it correctly now.

I've been working a little bit on the dog sweater. I seem to have kind of lost a bit of knitting mojo of late. I think the cowl is to blame. I need to finish it so it will be off my back. Anyway, I'm quite happy with how the dog sweater is doing. I've just been winging it as I go and it's awesome. The measurements for a good fit are spot on so far. I'm at the point where I'm decreasing the back sides.



Not a particularly feminine look, but Zoey and I don't care.

This project has inspired another one for a dog sweater. I ordered yarn from Joann's for it. Why drive down there and endanger my life if I can get it delivered to my front door? It arrived this week.

I have another yarn order that is not going so well. I want to make a Kep using natural wool colors. I ordered some from an Etsy seller on April 5th. It has not been shipped yet, and when I went back to the shop to look around a bit (maybe a message about shipping delays because of the Pandemic?), I discovered it's gone. The shop is no longer on Etsy. So I sent a message to the shop owner and have not heard back. I fear I'm out the money and no yarn is coming. It wasn't very much money, but when the hubby is unemployed, it hurts more than it would normally.

I've worked a few rows on the fairisle mittens. Not enough to bother with pics though.

Well, I need to start dinner so I'm gonna sign off. Keep healthy during this pandemic.

Live long and prosper. \\//

4/11/20

Pileated Woodpeckers

Yesterday morning, when I got up there was a Pileated Woodpecker at the bird buffet. I immediately grabbed my camera, but by the time I'd found where the memory card was and put it in the camera (ugh), the bird flew away. I hoped it would come back.

A few hours later, it did, and it brought it's friend. I took dozens of pictures trying to get my camera to focus on the birds and not on the thin twigs in front of them. It was frustrating. This is the best I got out of the whole bunch. I hope you can see them okay.



It is very rare to see these around here. Not necessarily because there aren't very many, but because they are extremely shy. We've known there is one living near the house because we've seen him in the trees on occasion over the last few years. This is the first time he came close to the house. I am so excited. It's a pair. The upper one is female. She has the black stripe on her face. The lower one is male. He has a bright beautiful red stripe on his face.

This picture doesn't due justice to how pretty they are. Or how large they are. They make the usual woodpecker visitors look down right teeny. I'm so thrilled they came for a visit. A rare treat indeed.

Live long and prosper. \\//