Friday, December 2, 2016

Slow and Steady

I'm making progress on Kiko's mitts, but it's in fits and starts.  After texting back and forth on color options, he selected the dark gray. 
Easy enough.  I had leftover gray from another project.  It seemed like a fairly big ball, but just as I was getting ready to cast on I decided to play it safe and weigh the yarn.  Looks can be deceiving, and the ball of yarn that appeared to be so big was only 40+ grams.  Not enough for these mitts.  I found a full skein of the same gray.  Problem solved.

With a full skein in hand, I debated my options for winding.  My umbrella swift made its final turns a couple weeks ago, and I haven't had time to replace it.  I thought about putting the skein on the back of a chair and winding it that way.  It's time consuming, but it works.  Then I remembered this.

My table top swift.  Another problem solved.  

I'm still winding by hand because my ball winder is attached to a work table, and there's isn't room for this 4-dowel contraption.  This winding process is a good mental exercise, and I'm trying to appreciate the slower pace.  And it definitely beats the back of a chair.

I found this week's color inspiration during an outing by the ocean.  The world is full of loud noises and bright colors.  Every minute of every day is a cacophony of information.  During these tumultuous, troubling times, it's essential to take a break and step back.

Peace, quiet, soothing solitude.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

My Strategy

The last couple years I've adopted a new strategy when it comes to holiday knitting.  Instead of knitting something for everyone in the family and trying to keep it all secret, they can each make specific requests.  If someone doesn't want anything, that's fine.  

The idea is that those who ask for a handknit will in fact wear it, and I won't spend time making something that won't get put to good use. And it takes the pressure off knitting in secret.  My knitting follows me around the house, and it's really hard to keep a secret that way.

This morning I consulted my list and decided to tackle the fingerless mitts my son, Kiko, wants.  When he made his request, we had discussed colors but hadn't settled on one.  In an attempt to be efficient, I sent Kiko a text. 

Now I'm waiting.  Sometimes texting doesn't produce immediate answers.  I think I'll get more coffee while I wait.

Monday, November 28, 2016

Back to Work

Whoosh!  I made it to the other side of a busy holiday weekend. Friends and family have come and gone, and the leftovers have been eaten.  All the work I had scheduled for the weekend didn't get done, but sometimes it's more important to savor the moment.  It's good for the soul to linger over lunch with friends I see only once a year.

The 15% off discount for Small Business Saturday runs through today. You'll find all the details on the website.  Check it out.

Now it's time to get busy.

The dye pots are on, and I have this little project to keep me entertained.

Friday, November 25, 2016

The Weekend Ahead

I hope everyone who was celebrating yesterday had a good holiday. After spending a crazy amount of time cooking and baking, I'm ready to stay out of the kitchen for the rest of the weekend.  With any luck the leftovers will get us through to Monday.

Now that Thanksgiving is behind us, the holiday preparations can begin in earnest.  To get things rolling we're participating in Small Business Saturday.  Orders placed between Saturday, November 26 (tomorrow) and Monday, November 28 will receive a 15% discount. Enter code SmallBiz16 in the comment section and the discount amount will be refunded to you.  Please note this offer does not include Yarn Knot Subscriptions and gift certificates.

As you'd expect I'm ready to settle in for some extended knitting time.

I have a project brewing with these 6 colors . . . I'm still plotting and planning.  During this winding session my swift crapped out and is beyond repair, so the rest of the skeins will have to be wound the old fashioned way.  More time to consider my project options.

Finally, the fun people at Hansen Crafts produced this adorable spinning video.  


I make a point to add some color to the holidays with fresh flowers. This week's color inspiration . . . 

A little bit of everything.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Before the Baking

Holiday preparations are well underway here.  I finished the grocery shopping - the worst part is over.  Cooking and baking are easy. Congested parking lots, crowded aisles and crabby cashiers . . . that's the challenging part.

Today is pie day, but before I get too deep into flour and fillings, I'm going to take a few minutes for coffee and knitting.

Just a few rounds to finish the thumb gusset.

If you're celebrating Thanksgiving tomorrow, enjoy your holiday.  Savor the time with family and friends.

Monday, November 21, 2016

On the Couch

A nagging bug has been flirting with me for a while now, but I was fighting the good fight to ward it off.  At some point last week I lost the battle. Over the weekend I surrendered and gave in to the worst cold I've had in a long time.  

I often rate the severity of a cold by how it affects my knitting.  If it confines me to the couch and I can still knit, it's not so bad.  I consider that bonus knitting time.  If it confines me to the couch and I'm struggling to keep my eyes open, it's bad.  That means all I can do is think about knitting and nothing is actually getting done.

I was almost on the bad end of the spectrum this weekend.  I sent my daughter to the store, and she came back with cold medicine for my severe, multi-symptom condition.  Normally I'm reluctant to take anything heavy duty for a cold, and my daughter knows this.  She stood over me and refused to leave until I had swallowed a couple horse pills.

Over the weekend I let go of any thoughts of cooking, cleaning or holiday prep, and today I'm still on the mend.  The pills allowed me to function at a low level of activity, and I did get a little knitting done.

Cables are not my preferred project when I'm sick, but believe it or not I didn't have anything else on the needles.  And I wasn't in any condition to start something new.  

My to-do list for the week is looming large.  Maybe I'll knit a few rounds while I ponder my strategy for catching up.

Friday, November 18, 2016


With so many pending projects lingering, it felt good to finish something.  It didn't have to be a complex, intricate project to give me a sense of satisfaction.

A simple ribbed hat for my son did the trick.  

I didn't follow a particular pattern.  With 2.75mm needles I cast on 144 stitches.  I used the double knot cast on for a stretchy edge.  I won't give you step-by-step instructions.  Follow the link for details.  I worked in K2, P2 ribbing and added a couple stripes.  When I reached the length my son requested, I decreased following the instructions in the Tri Koigu pattern.  Easy-peasy.

The yarn is Lillian March Sky with a smidge of Sea Breeze thrown in for stripes.  There's a chill in the air, and I feel a hat binge coming on. I've already highlighted a couple patterns.

I had one requirement for this week's color inspiration.  It had to be something to brighten my day and cheer me up.  These lanterns fit the bill.  

Colorful, creative, one of a kind.