Friday, April 18, 2014

Scattered

Recently I read an online discussion about lists and reminders - how people in business keep track of everything that needs to get done.   The discussion included electronic notes, apps, voice memos, pencil and paper.  People have interesting and creative ways to manage lists.  The bottom line is what works well for one person might not work well for another.

Over the last year I've used a hybrid list system that includes everything from post-its to electronic alerts to voice memos.  I've been managing, but there are definitely holes in my system.  The other night I woke up and remembered a special order that had fallen off my radar, and then I started racking my brain for other things that might have fallen through the cracks. 


So today it's back to basics.  I'm transferring everything to paper . . at least for now.  I have a recent dyeing experiment to keep me company.  Just another thing to sort out.

These beauties caught my eye the other day and are my color inspiration for the week.


Subtle shifting colors.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Mistakes Happen

I've been thinking a lot about knitting mistakes.  They are an inevitable fact of every knitter's life.  No matter how hard we strive to knit to perfection, mistakes manage to creep in, but it's important to put them in perspective.

I teach classes for new knitters, and mistakes are abundant.  Some of the students work to achieve perfection with the very first row they knit.  They rip out repeatedly until they get it just right.  Others are more casual and knit on through all sorts of mistakes.  Eventually they get the hang of it.  Students have different learning styles.

From the very beginning I warn all my students that mistakes will happen.  They are part of the process.  But I also tell them that mistakes are the best teacher.  Learning how you made a knitting mistake teaches you how to do it correctly and reinforces your skills. Back tracking to figure out what went wrong leads you down a path to do it right.

Seasoned knitters also make plenty of mistakes, and some are easier to live with than others.  I can be as much of a perfectionist as the next knitter.  There's a certain satisfaction that comes with doing it just right.  But keep in mind that unless you point out your mistake, chances are no one else will notice it.  

Even more important, instead of focusing on that one little mistake, look at all the good knitting it's surrounded by.  So often we dwell on a few seconds and one little blip and ignore the hours and hours spent on perfect knitting.  Give yourself a pat on the back.

Recognize your mistake and fix it if you must, but don't be too hard on yourself.  And don't forget to give yourself credit for all your error-free knitting.  Focus on the positive and look forward to more knitting challenges ahead.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Sunday Snapshots

After a delightful Sunday road trip to Rhode Island, Monday is proving to be full of potholes.  I blame in on the impending full moon.  I'm off to unload my truck, but I leave you with a glimpse of the Great Rhody Yarn Crawl Marketplace at Mount Hope Farm.




The spinning tent.  












Don't ask me about this mirror.  It was outside along the barn wall and toward the back.  Everyone had already left, so I couldn't get the story, but I am curious. 

Friday, April 11, 2014

A Trio

It's a gray day here, so I'm trying to brighten it up by releasing a handful of new colorways.


Beach Bum, Minty Mix and Salmon in Lillian.  I'm always compelled to celebrate new colorways by casting on a new project, but I'm trying to stay focused on the projects already under construction . . . at least for today.  Who knows what will happen over the weekend.

My color inspiration this week is full of hope.  All we need is sunshine and warmer temps.


Buds shifting from brown to green.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Midweek

It's only Wednesday, but it's been a long week . . . so long that yesterday should have been the weekend already.  Notice I said it's been a long week, not a productive week.

If I do nothing else today, I'm going to regroup and get back on track. The next 8 weeks are action-packed, and I'm going to need a higher level of organization if I plan to come out on the other side in one piece.

First up for today is dealing with this colorful pile.


Silk hankies ready for packaging.

Now if you have a little time to spare, hop over to Indie Untangled to view new offerings from several yarn and fiber vendors.  Full disclosure:  I have a posting on this site.  Indie Untangled is updated regularly, so with one stop you can see the latest from participating vendors.  Have fun browsing! 

Monday, April 7, 2014

Now for the Fun

Sometimes I find myself working on a knitting project that has a tedious part - a section or detail that takes longer than anticipated to complete.  It's either awkward or repetitive or just plain boring.  It takes an extra bit of resolve to get through a monotonous section, but I know that once I get past the rough patch, there will be fun knitting times ahead.  

And so I slog on . . . which is what I was doing over the weekend with my Biellese.  I was bound and determined to finish the border with its 100 ruffle ridges.  I set short goals for myself.  Work 10 more ridges and you're entitled to a fresh cup of coffee.  Or, work 5 more ridges and you can browse Ravelry for 20 minutes.

In the end all the cajoling paid off.


Ruffle border finished, 303 stitches picked up.  And now it's on to the slip-stitch pattern.  This is what I was waiting for.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Since It's Spring . . .

The spring theme has spilled over into my knitting.  This lovely little shawl was off the needles, waiting patiently to be blocked.


Leonarda Shawl.

This is the most recent Yarn Knot installment.  I finished it several days ago and then promptly set it aside until I could find time to block it.


Yesterday I spotted it on top of the pile and decided to make time to block it.

I've been craving a splash of color, and this shawl definitely fits the bill.


This design uses elongated garter stitch throughout the body followed by a drop-stitch border.  This was my on-the-go project for a while . . . simple yet entertaining.  The yarn is Bertha, a blend with a bit of cashmere.  This shawl is perfect for our still-chilly spring days.

This week I've been looking outside for colorful signs of spring, but I've heard the plants are behind schedule in blooming.  I found this week's color inspiration on a recent trip to the store. 


A taste of spring, packaged and ready to go.