Thursday, May 19, 2016

Thursdays Are For Knit Group

A very special visitor came to knit group today.  Meet three week old Sawyer.
This is Sandy's newest grandson.  The recipient of her winter of  baby-clothes knitting.  You can see he attracted  lots of attention.

Baby knitting is still the big focus for many  of our knitters.  Jean is working on a baby blanket for her coming grand child.
 Knit with Bamboo it will be soft against the baby's skin, with lots of little holes for baby fingers to find. Perfect.

Sharon is knitting the cutest 'animal-like' neck pieces for her two little grand daughters.

For at home wear, as scarves are not allowed at school these days.

Sharon R keeps her baby blanket knitting just for knit group.
  Something she can knit while chatting.  Gail really isn't judging the work.  She just happened to stand up to show us her completed, mitered square pillow.

 Knit with sock yarn, it is Gail's first mitered square project.  A great way to use up all those bits of left over sock yarn.

Special visitors and special knitting.  A great combo.

Monday, May 16, 2016

Cowl Cache

2016  - the year of my stash annihilation/acquisition.  Is there a compound word that could mean both?  The year started with me wanting to annihilate my stash but  not even half way through the 365 days, has seen me enhancing it instead.
Cowls are the thing I'm knitting.  The goal being, to use large hunks of yarn for each project.  That should tip the scale towards annihilation but it will, nonetheless,  be far from complete. I can tell that already.

Last week on the trip to and from the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival, I knit three cowls.  All from yarn I grabbed from 'Sue'.  Since arriving  home, I have knit two more.

Funky, unspun, artisnal yarn from Pagewood Farm gave me these two cowls.

 Either love 'em or hate'em cowls, I think.  With 10 stitches, garter stitch and  15mm needles, they hang once round the neck.

A longer, twice-round-the-neck cowl, I knit with two yarns; a commercial, multi-coloured red along with an  artisinal un-spun yellow.  120 stitches on 12mm needles, with  stripes of red garter and yellow YO K2togs.

The long, pinkish one below is knit exactly the same way as the red one above.  This yarn, Online Linie 231, is  a commercial yarn but again with an unspun look 

Below, another cowl with pinkish overtones.  Using three balls of Joy, this one is knit across 30 stitches with 12mm needles, changing  stitch pattern for each ball of yarn.  The first ball was knit in garter stitch, the second ball in stripes of garter and stockinet, while the final ball has   three rows of YO, K2tog every 5 ribs of garter.  It kept me from being bored.

This cache of cowls is intended for my Christmas give-away box.  I am way ahead on the gift prep but lagging way behind on the annihilation.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

May 11

Ten years ago today, we came to view this house and later that same day put in an offer to buy it.  2006 was a beautiful spring; it started early, leaves were out and temperatures warm as we house searched.  

When Fred stood at the patio doors and looked out over the back yard, he could just manage to see a structure  out back.  Worried that it might be a busy commercial enterprise, he turned and asked the realtor  "What's that building back there?"
"The United Church, replied the realtor."  So camoflaged by the leaves on the trees that it was barely visible. 

May 11th,  ever since, has become spring test day.  Are the leaves out? Can we see the Church? How far along is the spring? 

Well, not very far, this year,  as you can see. 

2016 is the year of a slow-starting spring.  The direct opposite of ten years ago.  Perhaps this will be a  year of no spring. Perhaps a year when we go from a weak winter directly into summer. With fingers crossed, I hope for a strong   summer. 

While I would rather have warmth, leaves, flowers and sunshine, at least I know if I cannot garden, I can knit.

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival 2016

Home now from the 2016 Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival.  It was just as much fun, just as invigorating,  just as exhilarating, just as socially expanding - and - just as exhausting  as other years. 

You can tell the US economy is in good shape.  Shoppers did not quibble over  price, they did not take more than a quick second to 'think about it', and they paid almost as often in  cash as with credit cards.  All positive economic  indicators I think.  The government could save millions by just asking a yarn show vendor about the economy.  Why pay those  highly educated economists, when they could simply ask a knitter who has a booth at a yarn festival?

To give you an idea of what it is like to 'man' a cross-border, trade show booth  ---

We left home Wednesday, arrived late afternoon Thursday and this is what the 'main barn' looked like Friday as vendors put together their displays.

It requires some thinking -

Sometimes two heads are needed - 

Some searching - 

Below is our booth - Shelridge Yarns - starting to come together.
 Doesn't that person on the left look as if she/he is tearing their hair out?

Eventually it does come together.  By 5pm Friday, all our garments were hung, labelled with name and price.  All kits were appropriately placed close to the display garments.  All signage was up and our booth looked  great.

Saturday started with early shoppers.  The doors open at 9.  We are not supposed to 'sell' before 9. Our first sale took place at 8:15am.

It is fun.  And I am so very grateful that Shelridge Yarns thought of me when they needed a helper.  But even a good thing can  last  only so long.  I gave my notice this trip and have retired.  No gold watch though.  I preferred the lovely, Evelyn Howard shawl kit (Pink shawl above)  that was offered to me.  

Good bye Maryland.  I will miss you next year.  

Monday, May 2, 2016

Margarita Monday

I couldn't resist that title.  How opportune to be knitting a sweater that starts with 'M' as does this day of the week. Who am I to question this gift of alliteration? Especially when there is progress to report?  So Margarita Monday it is. 

After 4 inches of knitting towards the waist from the great divide of sleeve and body, the pattern tells me to start the  waist shaping.  I am almost there.

And the lace is looking fabulous. 
Thankfully, our weather has changed to allow for  some outdoor knitting in bright sunlight.   If there is to be a mistake in the lace caused by distraction, I'd much rather be distracted by chirping birds and budding flowers than television.

There won't be much progress on Margarita this week, as I leave Wednesday morning for Baltimore and the Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival.  Margarita is too easily knit incorrectly  to  be worked while travelling.   Most likely, a couple of the  cowls I plan to knit from Bag Lady Sue's wool will be my car knitting for the trip.