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


Flower Power Pendant

This morning I finished the flower pendant I started earlier this week.

For those wanting to know, the pattern is called Flower Power by Holle Randy. It can be purchased on the Sova Enterprises site. If you decide to make it, just a couple things. It is made by starting with the outside edge and beading each side separately toward the center. The two sides are zipped together on the inside edges. You want to keep your tension fairly tight. Each side will be kind of wavy and warped, but when you zip it together it flattens right out. It's a very fun project.

I'm not sure what I'm going to do with it now, but I've taken tons of pictures experimenting with my camera and whatnot and I'm just going to post some here for posterity. They are some of my favorites.

Still workin' hard at the fair. It's been rather hot-in the 90's F. The needlecraft building is metal with no insulation, air conditioning, or even a fan and it gets like an oven inside. I am very tired of the heat. I drink so much water I feel like I'm gonna burst and I still feel thirsty. That, and I hate being all sweaty. Especially when it slides down my nose, or drips in my eyes. Ick. It's still better than snow though.

Live long and prosper. \\//


Just Call Me Moth Whisperer

This morning I went outside to take a picture of my new shoes.

They are metallic black and purple LAGear shoes with Honeycomb cushioning. Since my sprained foot is still sllllooooowwwllllly healing, I felt the need for some really well made comfortable cushioned shoes to walk the building in because the floor is concrete and my foot didn't like it after last week in leather loafers. (Actually, my back disliked it even more.) My sneakers are over 15 years old and well worn out. I needed new ones.

I wore them to Rathdrum Knitalong yesterday. They are the most comfortable shoes I've ever worn in my life. Not exaggerating! Usually with a new pair of sneakers you get a few days of pain while breaking them in. Not these. They are very light in weight too. Like wearing little hugs on my feet. I am so glad I bought them.

Anyway, to get back to the story, after taking some pics of the shoes I grabbed my lens cover and flipped my camera over to put it on and there was this little golden moth sitting on my index finger.

Click on pic to embiggen

If you've been reading this blog a long time, you might know this happens to me quite often with moths and butterflies. It posed for the camera for a few minutes, then fluttered away. Totally cool!

I have been working on the chevron sweater. I had planned to take it to Rathdrum Knitalong yesterday, but I misplaced the pattern I'd scribbled out. I was wishing it was in my phone. After returning home, I found it-right where I thought I'd left it.  Didn't see it the first few times I looked there. I just hate it when that happens.

This morning I went out on the deck while it was still cool and shady and worked on the chevron. I was still wishing it was in my phone in case I forget to take the pattern with me in the future when my phone beeped. There was an update available for one of my apps. Oh yeah! I'd forgotten about that. I have an app for 'scanning' documents and turning them into pdfs. Silly me! Now my pattern scribbles are safely in my phone. If you're a knitter, and you have a smart phone, I highly recommend an app like this. It works great. I have CamScanner-Phone PDF Creator.

This afternoon is my first Walk The Building shift at the fair. I'll let you know how it goes.

Live long and prosper. \\//


Fair Duty Stuff

I'm still alive. No, really!

Fair entries are way down in building 3 for everyone, except Sewing. They have more than normal. Did sewing get popular again? Perhaps it's a regional thing. I'm just glad someone had an increase this year.

I had Wednesday off, but I wasn't home. I was running all over tarnation doing errands like grocery shopping, going to the drug store, etc so there will be supplies during the days I don't have off.

Thursday was judging day. On judging day it is my task to take each entry to the judges, and get them back when they are done. Then I pin any ribbons awarded on the entries and make sure things get recorded into the computer. I don't do any judging myself. In fact, I'm very careful not to say anything about the entries unless asked by the judges, and then it's facts. No opinions from me. I don't want to do anything that might influence them. I really like our judges. They are very good at what they do. They both have taken courses to become fair judges. It was interesting watching them go over every knit item entered, inside and out, inspecting seams, looking for dropped stitches, ends not woven in (more of those than I care to think about) and things that make each entry special. The two top winners surprised me.

One is a vest knit by a woman who split 4ply yarn in half so she'd have 2ply yarn for the project (a fact that totally blew the judges away). The vest is almost knee length. The thought of splitting all that yarn makes my eyes glaze over. She really loved the color and wanted it that bad for her vest. She also did a beautiful job of knitting it.

The other big winner is a charcoal gray shell done in stockinette stitch with fingering weight yarn. The stitches are so perfect the judges were wondering if it was machine knit. It wasn't. I know the girl who made it. She used two sticks.

I really am amazed at what can be done with those sticks and a bit of string. I'll try to get some pictures to post here.

Friday we set everything up for display. It was a somewhat frustrating day for me. As with every other human endeavor, there is politics and personality conflict to deal with which I refuse to partake of, so certain people got a bit upset with me (no, the quilting dept is not the be all and end all of the fair. It's the Needlework building, not the quilting building). And then there's the people who don't have the authority but lord it over everyone and if you don't bow down they get upset. (I'm really good at doing that-getting them upset, that is.) I was constantly being scolded for wanting to use mannequins by people not in the sewing dept. even though I'd already discussed the matter with the head of that department and we both knew what I was doing (I ignored them.). Despite all this, we got the job done early. The quilters weren't done hanging quilts on the wall when I left, but they made it abundantly clear they didn't want my help, so I gladly went home.

Saturday I had to recover from Thurs. and Fri. I was very tired. I didn't do much. Laundry was about it. I slept a lot too.

Sunday my husband left early to go on a day bike trip. He rode 105 miles and was actually still functioning afterwards. Quite different from the 100 mile trip he did last May (where I was wondering if he'd live to tell about it), I am so proud of him. He will definitely be in shape and ready for his big ride in September. He's going on a 5 day 350 mile ride on the Selkirk trail which basically starts in Sandpoint, ID, goes up north into Canada, then west and down into eastern Washington eventually coming east back to Sandpoint. He's wanted to do one of these rides for years.

While hubby was gone I did more laundry (urg) and spent some time out on the deck beading.

That is half a flower which will be a pendant when I'm done with it. I wasn't real confident about my color choices, but seeing it in a photo, I'm quite pleased. That yellow was definitely a good idea.

I have been knitting some. I've been taking a sock with me for those times when I've had to sit and wait while doing fair stuff. I'm creating a new pattern. This one is from the toe up.

You have no idea how many times I frogged before I finally got the stitch pattern to look right. The only way to make it work is from the toe up. This is a mens sock right now, but the pattern will be unisex.

The fair starts Wednesday. I can hardly wait.

Live long and prosper. \\//


It Was a Slow Day

Yesterday was the first day people could bring their entries in to the fair. Wow, it was slow. Depressingly slow. I have less than half the entries we should have by now. And it's just not the knitting department. All the departments in the building are experiencing the same thing. I sure hope things pick up today or we're not going to have much to display during official fair time.

The weather is being unseasonably cool for August. 70's and 80's. In fact, the whole summer has been cooler than normal. We have only had 1 day over 90 degrees this whole summer. Yesterday it was almost cold, but the sun was out. To be honest, I've been enjoying it. I can spend more time outside when it's cooler. I feel really bad for those who are baking and roasting in the south and on the east coast. I think they got our hot summer weather.

On Sunday we (we being me, hubby, daughter, brother in law, sister in law and nephew) took a drive up into the Coeur d'Alene mountains over Lake Pend Oreille to pick Hucklberries. My nephew was visiting us from Boise and we wanted to give him an adventure.

The picking crew.
 Where there were berries up higher, they were all green. Where the berries would have been ripe, there were none. Commercial pickers have cleaned the place out. We didn't even find a whole cup worth of ripe berries. The drive was nice though. It's so beautiful up there. At one point we stopped on a ridge that overlooked the lake and ate a picnic lunch.

From the south end looking north.
My daughter had a hard time keeping her cookie away from Tripper.

Tommy enjoyed the trip immensely.

Such a sweet boy.
Further along our drive we saw the lake from the east side.

What a view!
We eventually made our way to the east side of the mountains overlooking the Clark Fork river. The valley is gorgeous right now.

Clark Fork river valley.
Montana is off in the background somewhere. We came down out of the mountains into this valley and then  headed for home. We didn't find much in the way of berries, but it sure was a beautiful day for a drive.

Live long and prosper. \\//


Sunset in Idaho

I had a beading marathon on Saturday to finish this baby in time for the fair. Actually burned some midnight oil. I call it 'Sunset in Idaho'.

Here's a close up of the focal point. (Click on pics to embiggen.)

Some large firepolished pink a/b crystals, some 4mm white a/b firepolish crystals, some 3mm gold beads (literally gold.) and a couple purple iris 12mm fluted czech glass beads. Oh yes, almost forgot, some gold bead caps for each end of the tubes.

I made odd count peyote tubes for this part using same delicas and seed beads as are in the triangle, except the purple ab ones-those are size 11 instead of size 6.

A peyote stitched toggle clasp. At the moment, it really is my favorite type of clasp.

I'm looking forward to wearing this one, but not until after the fair.

Speaking of the fair, today is the first entry day so my daughter and I will be down at the fair grounds, in building 3, helping people enter their items. I'm hoping for an incredibly busy almost chaotic day cuz that would mean lots of entries. The more the better! ;-)

Live long and prosper. \\//


Ready For The Fair At Last

 A Rainbow for My Hands is ready for the fair. Somehow I managed to match them up pretty good (color repeat-wise) despite not having the first one in my possession while working on mitt 2. (It was on display at the shop.)

  My daughter kindly let me use her hands for modeling. Back:

 The second mitt worked up much faster than I expected. Palms:

I find the texture of Entrelac extremely fascinating. Don't you? So complicated looking, and yet, amazingly easy to do.

Using a yarn with long color changes will give you this wonderful effect of making it look like you spent a lot of time choosing your colors and deciding how to arrange them.

I showed them to one of my nephews the other day and he had a hard time understanding that the way the colors laid out was just the way the yarn is dyed. A happy 'accident', if you will.

I designed and made these mitts for a class I taught last April for CDA Yarn and Fiber.

If you want to make these mitts, you can, because I wrote up the pattern and posted it on my pattern blog for free. It is currently my most popular pattern. Click the link below to go to it:

Live long and prosper. \\//


War of WIPs Call to Arms 2011

It's finished! Hurray!!!

 I'm so glad to have it done. It turned out better than I thought it would too. (Yeah, I know. I brag about my knitting way too much.)

For those who may not know. This sweater was donated unfinished to our local Knit Wits charity knitting/crochet group. The lower front, back, and cuff on one sleeve were done, but there was not enough yarn to finish the whole project. I added the stripes in the yoke and contrasting sleeve so it could still be a sweater.

I have 6 more unfinished donations to do. Urg.

If you care to join the War of WIP's 2011, please do so.

Live long and prosper. \\//


Insert Wolf Whistle Here

Just a quick post before I head out today. This fiiiine looking young fellow dropped by around dinner time yesterday.

Takin' a little stroll across the yard.

Stopping for a bite to eat. I guess Thimble Berry bush is a delicacy.

Just a reminder, the horizontal cross bar on the fence is 4 feet high.

Small as moose guys go, but still, darn big! He snorted a bit at me, so I kept my distance and used the telephoto lense.

Life at the Parkarosa is never dull.

Live long and prosper. \\//


Herringbone Donut Necklace-Check!

Another fair entry is finished. I worked on this on the camping trip.

I made the Herringbone chain using a tutorial by Perlen4U.de called Schnelle Herringbone Kette.  I found it via the blog Beads For Brains. Its a PDF file and written in German, but the graphics are very very good so no words are needed. It goes so well with the donut, doncha think?

 I love this donut. I should make another one. The pattern, Donut Herringbone, is by Vyolina.

The pattern is written in French and is 4 pages, so make sure you look for the other three cuz the above link goes to page one.

 The necklace is 19 inches long  and has a simple Vermeil clasp.

Now, to make a necklace to hang that wavy twisty triangle pendant on.

Live long and prosper. \\//


War of WIPs Call to Arms

I really didn't think I'd be able to address this until after the fair, but I was wrong. I actually worked on one of the aged WIPs yesterday. I took it with me to Knit Wits and worked on it during the meeting, between fielding fair entries and knitting questions.

I got all the seams sewn. Now I just have to put the neckband on and it will be done. I will probably do that this weekend. I was putting this thing off because I was dreading sewing the yoke to the body. Lack in confidence that I could make it look good. Turned out to be easy peasy. Silly me!

If you care to join the War of WIP's 2011, please do so.

Live long and prosper. \\//


Loop de Loop

I got the necklace using the beads from my sister-in-laws mothers sweater done while we were camping.

It's 19 inches long.

It's tubular netting stitch embellished with fringe loops at each intersection.

 The loops gradually get longer the closer to the center they are.

The size 11 gold glass seed beads and 4mm plastic pearls are from the sweater. I added the white seed beads from my stash for contrast.

The camp ground we stayed in had some interesting places to use as backgrounds for my photos.

 It's ready for the fair.

The original sweater.

The camping trip was great. I'll write more about that tomorrow.

Live long and prosper. \\//