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


WIP Update

Just a quick WIP post. I have been knitting on Margaret Tudor for hours this past week, but haven't made much progress. I'm doing the first thistle panel and it has not gone well. All I have managed to finish is 3 repeats of the chart. There are supposed to be 5+ repeats in each panel.

It's a little more difficult than I remember. I keep making mistakes and having to frog back. I've re-knit this thing 3 times so far. I get just about finished with the 3rd repeat and I'd find a bad mistake down below near the beginning. Man, I'm putting a lot of hours into it for not much progress. Today I finally got past the spot I always find mistakes at and made real progress. It's only a few rows, but it sure makes me feel better. I think I'm getting to know the chart now. I have all the symbols memorized so I don't have to refer to the abbreviation list any more. Things should start going better.

I gave the needle case to my friend Phyllis and she loves it. That makes me very happy. Now I'm inspired to do some more sewing. Early last year I ordered a couple patterns and some cotton fabric to make myself some tops. I'm going to start one of them. This is the fabric. Knitting sheep, seems so apropos. I pre-washed it yesterday.

This is the pattern I'm going to use.  I will start cutting out pieces tomorrow, I hope.

There's shorts in that pattern too. It would be nice to have some matching shorts to go with. Maybe in a bright red corduroy. I love corduroy. Haven't had any in my wardrobe since the 80's.

The winter storm I was expecting at my last post didn't happen until a couple days later. We had another one last night that dumped a few more inches. Ugh! More is supposed to come in the days ahead. I am so tired of snow. Records of snowfall for February are being broken all over the area. Temps too. Usually in February we get 40's during the day and 20's at night. We've had several days were it didn't even get above freezing during the day, and single digits at night. Hey Spring! We're ready for ya!

Live long and prosper. \\//


Sewing Project Finished

I finished my sewing project. This is a case for storing circular knitting needles.

The pattern I used is an old Butterick Pattern B5006. I found it on Ebay but it's also available on the Butterick web site. The outside is from a remnant I found in the stash. It's from Timeless Treasures Tree of Life collection. I used this fabric to make a small knitting bag for carrying small projects called the boxy bag a few years ago.

The pockets are made with some quilting fabric I bought for another sewing project that I didn't get to yet. It's supposed to be lining for a tote bag, but I liked it for these pockets. The background fabric is something I found at Joann's a few weeks ago.

There are 12 pockets in this little case. Every one of them with curved corners. I got pretty good at sewing those corners by the time I got to the 12th one. It will hold a lot of needles.

As sewing jobs go, it's not my best, but better than I expected. Except the top stitching. I am so terrible at top stitching. So I won't show it to you.

I had planned to make this before Christmas for a gift, but life got in the way. I will give it to the recipient next time I see her. Better late than never.

We have a lot of snow. We're having a sun break today, and then it's supposed to start back up again tonight. We are way above average for February snowfall. Right now there's about a foot of it on top of the garage. It's not slid off yet. I hope it doesn't do what it did that year it all sailed off halfway across the back yard slamming into a small tree, knocking it down, as well as breaking the heat pump.

I have been working on Margaret Tudor. I started the thistle panel. I got about 30 rows into it and frogged it. It was so sloppy looking as I learned the various chart symbols for stitches along the way. I finally caught on to it (the chart), so I ripped it out and started over. It's looking much better.

The stitch definition is great with this yarn. It's easy to split though because I'm using very sharp pointed needles. I think it's an Addi Turbo lace, if I remember correctly. I will have to be more careful so I don't make a mess of the yarn.

I spent part of this morning trying to take pictures of the birds eating at the buffet. It is very hard to get good pics of Chickadees. They don't stay still for more than a nano second. I did get this Black Capped one, which isn't too bad.

I got a good one of a female wood pecker. Haven't seen her mate around though. I hope he's okay.

I had 3 Magpies this morning eating at the suet cages, but they flew away every time I tried to approach the window to take their pics. I've got lots of birds right now. Besides these, I also have a large flock of Purple Finches, a pair of Nuthatches, and something new for us - three Dark Eyed Junco's. What is not here is Pine Siskins. I wonder where they went?

Live long and prosper. \\//


WIP Wednesday February 13, 2019

It's WIP Wednesday and I have something to post.

I finished 4 panels on Margaret Tudor, which I haven't taken pics of because I didn't want to. After the 4th panel, I started another layette set because KnitWits.

I have 3 pieces of the orange and teal fleece so I'll be working with those colors for awhile.

I also started a sewing project. I intended to sew this before Christmas because it was going to be a present, but then life got in the way so I'm doing it now.

I'm about a fourth done with it, and I'm very proud of how it's looking so far. I got the outside part done. It has 4 pockets in it, plus a strap, and a velcro tab for closing. My best sewing job in a long time. I'm making a circular needle case. Only 10 pockets left to make. I found a very old McCall's pattern for it on Ebay last summer.

The last few days it has been snowing, and snowing, and snowing. It's a good 3 feet deep in the back yard. The snow falling off the roof is up about a foot above the windowsills.

The freeways and highways are in various stages of being opened or closed because the conditions are so dangerous. We didn't even have knitting yesterday.

Right now the sun is shining, giving us a much needed break. More snow is expected tonight and for the next week. Winter is making up for the mildness of it's beginning. We're okay. There's lots of food in the house, and I've got tons of knitting, beading, cross stitch, and sewing projects that I can do.

Live long and prosper. \\//


Margaret Tudor Reborn

At the beginning of the year I like to set myself a knitting goal. Sometimes I accomplish it, sometimes I don't. This year the goal is Margaret Tudor.

About 10 years or so ago I was working on an Alice Starmore pattern called Margaret Tudor from her book Tudor Roses, first edition. I stopped working on it because I discovered I didn't have enough yarn. I have to enlarge the pattern because it doesn't go up to my size and I miscalculated how much yarn I would need. I put the sweater on hold while I looked for more of the yarn, which had been discontinued. Unfortunately, I have been unable to find any. So I ended up frogging the project. I was very discouraged over the whole ordeal.

Margaret Tudor (First Edition)

In December of last year my knitting friend Dorothy was talking about a Starmore sweater from the same book that she wants to make but hadn't been able to get herself motivated. We decided that we would start our Starmore projects in January together and encourage each other to keep it up.

In January I ordered some yarn. I got Palette from KnitPicks in Iris heather. It's a gorgeous wool fingering weight yarn. Pics do not do it justice.

The pattern calls for Scottish Fleet, a yarn I detest. It's sport weight, according to Ravelry. However, the gauge is 9 sts to the inch. That is awfully firm for sport weight. I don't even think I could get that kind of gauge, and if I did I know it would hurt my hands knitting it. I'd practically be knitting cardboard. I perused the notes of knitters on Ravelry who have made this sweater and most of them used fingering weight yarn, so I have chosen to go with that.

I very carefully knit test swatches as directed by the pattern instructions. I got gauge with size 1 needles. Last week I started knitting.

This sweater is knit in panels that are sewn together. I decided to start with the easiest panel. I cast on last Thursday. It only took two days to knit it. There was a serious problem though. The panel was only 17 inches long when it was done. It's supposed to be 22 inches. Clearly I was having a gauge problem. I decided to knit it again, and went up to size 2 needles. Lo and behold, it turned out perfect in length and width. Hooray! Size 2 it is. Here's both panels so you can see the difference.

I don't know why the swatches were so off, but it's not the first time this has happened to me.

I need two of this particular panel, so I'm well into the second one.

I'm kind of excited about this project. Doing it with Dorothy is going to be fun.

Live long and prosper. \\//


Layette Set #37

This is the first officially finished project of 2019. Layette set 37 will go to KnitWits.

The Cardigan

Pattern: Polka Dot Cardigan by Linda Jo Park

Size: 3-6 months

Yarn: Cloverleaf  by American Thread Company
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: 348 Tangerine

Yarn: UnKnown Acrylic, but probably a Red Heart yarn
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Medium Teal ?

Needles: Circular size 6 and 8

Started: December 25, 2018
Finished: January 3, 2019

Comments: This is the third prototype of my design. Checking to make sure I've got it right. This is the back.

Here is a close up of the stitch pattern. It's a 2-color Moss stitch.

I had a very hard time finding buttons to go with these colors. I found these ones online at Embellishment Buttons on Etsy.

It's not what I really wanted, but they'll do I guess.

The Hat

Pattern: Polka Dot Hat by Linda Jo Park

Size: 3-6 months

Yarn: Cloverleaf  by American Thread Company
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: 348 Tangerine

Yarn: UnKnown Acrylic, but probably a Red Heart yarn
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Medium Teal ?

Needles: Circular size 7

Started: January 5, 2019
Finished: January 19, 2019

Comments: I didn't put ear flaps on this hat. I think I like the ear flaps better.

The Booties

Pattern: Polka Dot Booties by Linda Jo Park

Size: 3-6 months

Yarn: Cloverleaf  by American Thread Company
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: 348 Tangerine

Yarn: UnKnown Acrylic, but probably a Red Heart yarn
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Medium Teal ?

Needles: Circular size 8

Started: January 26, 2019
Finished: January 29, 2019

Comment: I used a larger size needle. I think I like the smaller better.

The Blanket

Pattern: Shell stitch

Size: 32 by 28

Yarn: Cloverleaf  by American Thread Company
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: 348 Tangerine

Hook: Size G

Started: January 30, 2019
Finished: January 31, 2019

Comment: Now you see why orange and teal. I have fleece in those colors.

And that's the end of that. I have KnitWits this week and I'll be turning this in.

Live long and prosper. \\//