Knitting and Spinning Updates and a New Cria!

In the first picture are some of the things I am actively working on, a little girl baby sweater (yes the Flax :)), it’s in the Yarn Bee Soft & Sleek in Coral colorway. The larger item is a garter stitch comfort shawl in Lion Brand Homespun in the Waterfall Cascade colorway. The last item is the hat I will be knitting for my family member out of the lavender hand-spun (wool with a little alpaca blended in) that is showing in the next picture. I haven’t started the hat (Snowtracks Cap by Timothy Peters) yet, but I did get it wound into a ball. I actually enjoy the hand winding process, I find it a mindless and peaceful experience, well except when it is tangled as I wind, then it’s just an experience :P.

The next picture is all the yarn I’ve spun this year, (well except the orange skein it was a fractal spin I did last year, it’s just pretty :P).

The next two pictures are the alpaca cria (baby alpaca) roving I am spinning on my Rick Reeves double drive wheel. The alpaca fiber is butter soft as it goes through my fingers, and oh my it almost spins itself!! This roving was from a cria fleece that my daughter bought me a few years back that I had sent off to a mill in the east to turn into roving and they did a tremendous job!!

The last picture is one of my son’s alpaca, Summit, and her new cria, who was born this last Thursday, isn’t he a cutie, he’s white just like his mom! His dad was a beautiful fawn color from another herd. They have one more cria to be born in the next two weeks and that will make 4 new babies this year.

Summer Sock Camp at the Ready!

I decided to do the Summer Sock Camp with The Crazy Sock Lady. She has a podcast on youtube this is a link to her video about the Summer Sock Camp. Her channel is fun. I haven’t knit socks in over a year, maybe 2, and thought it would be fun to knit socks again. If you like to knit socks and are interested in being entered for some pretty nice prizes, go check her out. This goes on from June through August.

This is her vanilla sock pattern and she has a video on using 9″ circs for this. She also has videos for using two circs, the flex flips and magic loop techniques, top down and toe up. I prefer the 9″ circular needles and I like the bamboo because they are a bit more grabby and my yarn doesn’t slip off the tips. I have to go down an additional size so I use a 0 because I knit loosely anyway and knit even a little more loosely with the 9″ circulars. I chose her vanilla sock pattern (available in her Etsy for $2.00) because I am using Threads and Loops Perfect Pair sock yarn and I wasn’t sure a textured pattern would show well or maybe even be over the top with the color designs in this sock yarn. The Crazy Sock Lady (Kay Litton) has some truly beautiful sock patterns on Etsy. Hope to see you over there on her podcast :). Let the fun begin!

A FO!! One Down and Several to Go

Well these have been on my needles for about 6 months, sheesh. The winter was hard on me this year, was hard to focus on things and get them done. These are the Te Ara Fingerless Mitts by Rachel Cooper, they are a free Ravelry download. I used left over yarn from the Daisy Rectangular Wedding Shawl I made and a size 3 9″ ChiaoGoo circular needle, which is a size smaller than called for because I knit a little looser with Combined Continental knitting. But because the yarn was a very lightweight fingering, not quite a lace weight, if I use this yarn for another pair I will go down one more size. They look small but they have a lot of stretch. I used a lavender acid dye, Jaquard, to achieve the color. I hope she will enjoy them this fall and winter :).

Working on the baby sweater now, my friend’s baby is due next month, then since I now have some brain to wrap around things I will work on a hat a friend sent me because I told her to send it to me and I would be happy to finish it for her. I will get to work with musk ox yarn!!! It’s very soft. I will have to look at the pattern and figure out where she left off.

Hope everyone is enjoying this very weird weather, better than snow and below zero weather for sure, but this hot and cold stuff is annoying. It was on the cool side for quite a while (not complaining, I can handle 50’s and 60’s, just means a long sleeve shirt and some people are wearing shorts in that weather here :P) but we have had a lot of rain and for the past several days it has been in the lower 80’s and the humidity is stifling!! I turned on my air conditioning. But Thursday another cold front is coming through and we will be back in the lower to middle 60’s and lower 70’s. LOL, and I can turn my air off again. I’ll just enjoy it, because before you know it summer will be here soon with 90’s and stifling humidity, life in the midwest.

Finishing Some and Casting on All the Things!

Spring has finally brought back my knitting and spinning mojo!

First my finished spinning project that has been on my wheel for about 10 months? I finished the wool/alpaca singles I was spinning and plyed them. Well you can’t really call it finished because now it will become something haha, I will be knitting that into a hat for a family member who moved to AZ and complained this past winter it was cold HAHAHAHA, I’m laughing because I live in the Midwest which is where she grew up too, Cold My Foot! sigh. I dyed the yarn lavender, and it will become the Snowtracks Cap by Timothy Peters, free download. My yarn is not dk but a light sport weight so I will knit the medium size instead of the small that I usually do for her. Hopefully it will fit :P.

2nd, Knitting, I am working on the Ara Fingerless Mitts, free Ravelry download. One is done except the thumb and I’m at the start of the design on the 2nd one. Should have those done this week, yeah!! They are only 3 1/2 months late :P. I am using left over yarn from the wedding shawl I knit last fall I am using a ChaoGoo size 3 9″ needle and I always have to go down a needle size because I knit a little loosely, the combination continental knitting style seems to do that, but because that yarn is a light fingering I would use a size 2 needle next time if I make them again.

Next I started another hat to donate to the homeless shelter this next fall. I like knitting them, they are a mindless comforting knit when I need to unwind and think about things, or just not think at all, so not only am I doing good I’m also finding comfort in them. I’m using I love this yarn and my new Knitters Pride Ginger Special interchangeable needle set, size 5 needle with a 16″ cord. These needles are so nice to knit with, not as grabby as bamboo but not as slippery as metal. I love these sets!

Next I’m also working on a long term project that I have had on my needles for a couple of years, eventually it will get done and I will probably give it away and then start another, it is just for something to knit when I need some mindless knitting that has pretty colors to pick my spirits up, is just a long skinny diagonal scarf. We all need those mindless knits. I’m using a bamboo size 5 needle 12″ and Yarn Bee, Glowing, in purple multi from Hobby Lobby.

Finally I have started another baby sweater using Hobby Lobby, Yarn Bee, Soft and Sleek, in Neutral Stripe and a Knitters Pride Karbonz size 5 needle 16″ for the neck and ChaoGoo size 5 needle 9″ for the cuffs and KnitPiks Radiant (wooden) needle size 7 16″ for the body and ChaoGoo Bamboo size 7 needle 9″ for the sleeves. After I get past the yoke the body and sleeves are mindless knitting too. There must be a theme here!

I generally do not have so many things going at once I usually find it stressful to have so many things on the back burner, but I just want to knit all the things!!

I hope everyone is enjoying this wonderful Spring, it’s been warm and cooler, warm and cooler, rainy and sunny etc, but it’s not COLD!! The birds are out and singing, lawn mowers are humming, the grass is green and leaves and flowers are budding and the Spring smells are amazing! Gotta love it!!

Hats for Warmth Project, Te Ara Fingerless Mitts and Other Things.

It’s toward the end of the month and I haven’t posted. After finishing the wedding shawl I took a break from knitting for a month and just lost my knitting mojo and didn’t even finish the Christmas gift I was working on for someone I knit a gift for every year. Then the day after Christmas I lost my dad, so last year, with the pandemic and 2 Derechos we had and my dad’s passing, was just not a very good year for motivation.

I have finished a hat for what I call my Hats for Warmth project, which are hats to give to the homeless shelter. And I did pick up the fingerless mitts I was working on for that Christmas gift. I can at least get those done before she doesn’t need them this year anymore :p. It is the Te Ara Fingerless Mitts pattern by Rachel C. and is a free pattern. I am using some left over fingering yarn from the wedding shawl and will dye it some shade of lavender and am using my ChiaoGoo 9″ size 3 needles, it calls for a 4 but I knit rather loosely and tend to have to go down a size to get any gauge close to correctly. I need to get another set of those in a size 2, I have 1’s and 0’s for socks but tend to use the 0’s for the socks :). The sizing on this pattern has a lot of negative ease and looks small but stretches out quite a bit so unless you have pretty large hands I suggest the small size in the pattern.

I am using my Mandalorian progress keeper Mythosaur (an extinct Manadorian dragon that they use to tame and ride or kill wild to prove themselves) and the frog stitch marker like the one The Child (Grogu aka baby Yoda) ate in the series, was some funny stuff :p. The progress keeper and stitch marker set makes me smile and has helped pulled me out of the loss of my knitting mojo. The Mythosaur was a gift from AdoreKnit on Etsy. I have just ordered a new set of her stitch markers with a Mud Horn (Din Jarin’s signet by killing that beast and it becomes a symbol of his clan of 2 given to him by the the Mandalorian Armorer ) and a stitch marker set with a Mandalorian figure progress keeper and and a bar of Beskar (metal that makes his armor) stitch marker. Can you tell I love the Mandalorian series? They are making Star Wars fun again :). AdoreKnit markers are so much fun to use and they are well made, if you haven’t checked out her store, you should go look at all the stitch markers and progress keepers she has and she even sews some bags :).

I picked up some more yarn for the hats and some baby sweaters at Hobby Lobby as it was their bi weekly 30% off yarn sale week :). I have also been working with a younger family member on sewing. I’m not a sewist, but I can do basic things and can kinda sorta follow a pattern. I bought her a decent sewing machine for Christmas and she was excited to start using it. So far we have just practiced threading it, winding the bobbin, and using the stitches with white thread on black cloth so she can see what she is doing and what the stitches it comes with looks like. She bought herself a pattern for a toy to sew, but of course it needed a furry fabric so I have convinced her to wait to make it until we practice on more stuff first. I thought maybe an easy quilt square she can frame to put up in her room or give as a framed gift. Something with straight stitches and pretty easy to sew but looks amazing when done for some self confidence before moving on to harder things :). I’ve always thought quilting looks like magic with cloth :).

Hoping for a better year and wishing the same for you all as well.

My Daisy Rectangular Shawl has been Reworked for Errors

My Shawl pattern fixed

I reworked my Daisy Rectangular Shawl to fix an error I had made in the design.  It’s working out for me but since I don’t have a tech editor, I hope I have fixed it 😛  I have updated the pattern on that page.  I have only done one repeat of the 24 row pattern and this is not blocked, so the lace is … well you know how lace is before it’s blocked :P.  Another lady who knit this pattern used stitch markers between the repeats because she said it drove her crazy until she did,  but marking the repeats messed me up, guess I’m a little strange, I have no problem counting stitches between repeats and reading my work,  You use whatever works for you :).

I’ll have updates on my progress, as I have to have this done by Oct.  Hope you enjoy the pattern if you have a mind to knit it. 🙂

Summer Solstice, New Progress Keepers and Lace Bookmarks

Sorry Word Press has changed some things and I don’t know how to get around in it yet, sigh.

Ok it’s the Summer Solstice, which for me means our daylight hrs will start to get shorter.  I only pay attention to the solstices because they signal days getting shorter or longer.  I always look more forward to the Winter Solstice, because it means the daylight hrs are increasing and Spring is coming. 🙂  I guess I shouldn’t look at Summer Solstice as a negative and just enjoy the summer and fall without worrying about winter yet.  Can you tell I am not a winter person, and yet I live in the Mid West?

I have been working on the lace book marks and they are now all sent out to their intended recipients.  I knit them on size 1 (US size) needles using left over sock yarn, used about 4 to 5 grams including the tassle, depending on how thick your sock yarn is.  They are quick and easy.

This past week I got a surprise package in the mail.  I opened it up and it was from one of my favorite stitch marker/progress keeper makers, Adoreknit .  She knows I am an huge Mandalorian fan.  I was so excited when I opened it and found these two Mandalorian progress keepers!  Put a big smile on my face, baby Yoda is adorning one of my WIPs, is he not so cute!  Makers are the best people!

I got the new yarn I ordered for the wedding shawl that I need to have done before October.   The yarn I ordered before was too coarse for bare shoulders and I returned it.  I ordered both yarns from LoveCrafts and they were very good about taking the previous order back.   I’m using my Daisy Rectangular Shawl pattern.  I hope I have corrected the error (miscalculation) on two rows being too close.  I haven’t updated my pattern yet because I want to knit up my correction to make sure I didn’t make it worse :P.  If this corrects it, I will update the pattern.  I will post more on this shawl (yarn, needles etc) as I get further in the pattern as I have only finished the border on the bottom at the moment.

I’m on the last sleeve of the Flax baby sweater.  I will post a picture when it’s done :).

New Bobbins, New Baby Flax on the Needles, Lace Bookmark and New Needles!

Lots of pictures today!  Ok, the first picture is the one of the Rick Reeves bobbins I had made by a furniture maker (on the left) and the bobbin I sent him to copy (on the right) from a few months ago. The hole was a little off center, didn’t have the metal sheath in it to protect the wood when it was spinning and the hole was actually to small to fit on the flyer (the flyer is pictured underneath that one.) I did find another wood worker who has made these bobbins before and I had him make me two. He did and as you can see they fix perfectly and look exactly like the original one!! Makes me a happy camper :).

I have made 4 of these lace bookmarks in the last month or so but keep forgetting to get a picture before giving them to the friends I made them for.  But this time I remembered!!!  These are easy to knit and because they are small they don’t take very long to make, an hr or two depending on how fast you knit.  The pattern is Bookmark Tri which is a free pattern on Ravelry.  I used the lace pattern.  It is a fun pattern to knit and a quick gift that looks really nice :).

I did start a new Flax baby sweater, size 6 month to 1 year, in Hobby Lobby’s Yarn Bee Soft & Sleek yarn in the color Denim Stripe, eventually I will need a little boy sweater ;).  Using size 5 needles for neck and sleeve cuffs and size 7 for yoke, body and sleeves.  After you get the yoke done this is a mindless knit and since it’s a baby sweater it goes pretty fast.  I will get to give the pink and purple sweaters to the intended recipients (hopefully) on Tuesday! One was born last month and the other one is due soon.

I was hoping I would be knitting this on the new needles I ordered.  They were on sale on line at Webs (about $25 off) and I was so excited to order them since I had wanted this set for almost 2 years, but since they were on sale they ran out and had to wait for more stock to get in, so I had to wait 2 weeks.   When it came in my mail, I opened it up and realized that they hadn’t sent me the Knitter’s Pride Ginger Interchangeable Special Set, but instead the Knitter’s Pride Ginger Interchangeable Deluxe set.  They are both the same cost and beautiful needle sets, and I eventually wanted to get the Deluxe set but the Special set has shorter needles for the size 16″ and 20″ cable lengths they come with, which I wanted for the hats and baby sweaters I knit.  The Deluxe set is nice and has the same sizes in the needles but the needles are longer and have size 24″, 34″ and 40″ cable lengths.  I told them I would keep this set, since I wanted it eventually anyway and will just save for another 6 months and wait for another sale, as they are anything but cheap.  But they are beautiful wooden needles with a very nice case.

We have already had one 90F degree day a week or so ago, and it looks like tomorrow will be 90F again.  On Wednesday it looks like it will go back into 70’s for about 4 days then back up into the 80’s.  Summer is here!

Hope everyone is in a safe place.

December is finally here! Plus Flax Sweater is Finished!

I finished the Flax infant sweater by Tin Can Knits.  Love her design, knit from the top down and no joining or sewing up seams, perfect!!  Wish to colors showed up better, I seriously lack photo skills!  It has light blue, pink, purple, green and yellow.

The 2nd picture is a musical clock that I received as a gift on Thanksgiving.  My son’s mother-in-law and I exchange gifts on Thanksgiving and this was the gift she gave me.  My eyes almost popped out of my head, I love it so much.  It plays music on the hr and turns off the musical chimes when it’s dark so it won’t wake you up, how is that for awesome.  I gave her the Changing Stair Cases shawl  I had been knitting for her, hehe, she was also very excited :), lace shawls will do that ;).  Life is good :P.  I’m still working on some Charity hats, but I need to pick my next project.  Well actually I think it has picked me and I need to finish my spin for the hat I’m making for my family member.  I will have some time later this week to work on finishing it.  Hope everyone has a great December, only 3 or 4 more months (depending on where you live) until Spring :P.

Another Flax Sweater Started

Flax baby sweater 2a

The color in this picture is not showing as colorful as it is, it’s a white with lots of colors (lavender, green, pink and purple running through it, sigh, I’m not a good photographer).  I used the same yarn and needle sizes that I used on the other Flax sweater .  You can see the color a little better on the hat .  I love the construction on this sweater and it’s a free pattern.  Knitting these small sweaters is pretty fast and addictive.  But you can knit larger ones, the sizing goes up to 4XL.

Trying to shake another cold, so sick (pun intended :P) and tired of catching stuff, ugh.  No choir Christmas singing for me this year because it has wrecked my voice for the next month or so, makes me so sad :(.