Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Are these bright enough?

bright enough?
Originally uploaded by spindledreams
Okay my LYSO says I have been buying too many muted and dull colors and need to add some bright yarn to my life. Specifically she suggested a pair of socks. So we spent about half an hour looking through her sock yarns to find a "bright" yarn I approved of. We came up with the Trekking on the right.

Then yesterday I was in Ft Collins for "tea" at Lambspun and my friend Linda said she agreed with my LYSO. She then helped me pick out another hank of yarn with "color" the center ball which is Araucania Ranco Multy color number 303.

When we got home I was digging around looking for something else and found a wonderful ball of hand painted merino/tencel sock yarn that I had bought off eBay earlier this year. I really wish that picture could show you all the wonderful colors in it. Besides the vivid blue, red, and yellow that really show up it has lavender and green areas.

Next question now is which do I use for that pair of socks....

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Wow we have actual progress on my FLAK

Grin I got to start the sweater this weekend. My cable swatch is done. You can see it here before I cast off using EZs sewn bind off. That was fun as I underestimated the amount of yarn needed and finished with just an inch of my tail left.

My cable swatch has been washed, dried and measured. I enjoyed knitting this swatch and really love the way the cables have turned out.

I have the saddles started and tomorrow I may be able to start the back of the sweater :-) I am so thrilled to have actual sweater progress pictures. Another nice thing that happened this weekend was the arrival of my new stitch markers from Chappy. They are beautiful and stand out nicely on this yarn. I adore the row marker. It has been a huge help while knitting the saddles. (Wry grin)They have a 4 row cable repeat in the center and I kept getting my rows mixed up until that little marker arrived. Thanks Chappy.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

We have a winner!

Whew I was so relived when this set of cable plans turned out so nicely. I picked Attempt 2 to swatch first as I liked it a bit better then the Attempt 1. I just picked up were I was on my cable swatch which meant I actually started on Row 2 and knit upwards. I managed to finish row 12 before my stitches started to blur when I looked at them. Grin I figured that was a sign I had been up too long. Took some pictures and I am headed to bed as soon as this post is finished.

photo of attempt 2 knitted up
cable swatch
Originally uploaded by spindledreams

This photo is about the best I could get to show the new cable plan. Notice that the swatch for my orginal graph is below the current work. This lets me compare both patterns easily but grin I don't think there is any contest between the two plans. The second plan shows off my cables much better and is much closer to what I was wanting.

Friday, November 30, 2007

FLAK Preview 2

After picking a texture I needed to graph the cables and make a cable gauge. Only one problem, I wanted a diamond cable on my sweater and there were none in the pattern as written. So off I went in search of a diamond cable. Sigh that took some time but I finally found one that I thought would work. So back to my graphs. I originally thought of simply replacing the center horseshoes and rope combination with three diamonds as shown in the graph.

I did drop a wave cable that was in the pattern as it did not play well with my diamond. While pretty this made the center section too wide for my space. I dropped the center of the three diamonds and replaced it with a narrower section of Seed stitch. There were some problems with this attempt. My diamonds were not showing up well as they were two crowded in between the other cables. Also my little rope cable was being swallowed up by the Seed stitch. Back to the drawing board.

So I fiddled and fiddled and fiddled but nothing was striking me as a good solution. Then by accident I dropped the following sequence of cables on my blank "paper"

Hmmm now that looked interesting. Counted stitches and fiddled around some more until I found two possible solutions to my problems AND something that I liked. Both are nearly identical. I still have a pair of diamonds for the center AND I got one fitted in on each side of the the sweater for a total of 4 small diamond patterns. Both also have the honeycomb/plait/honeycomb combination that I liked from the original pattern. Where they differ is how I treated the space between the two center diamonds...

Attempt 1. Keeps my texture stitches between the diamonds but drops the ropes that were in the original changes. The yellow spots represent Seed stitch. This panel is 10 stitches wide.

Attempt 2. Replaces the Seed stitch with another honeycomb like I have used between the other cables. This one also adds some space between the honeycomb and the diamonds.

Which do you like best?

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

FLAK preview

In my last post I was off to make a swatch of texture patterns. That done I picked two patterns I liked seed stitch
row 1 K1 P1
row 2 P 1 K1
and a pattern called Sand Stitch from Barbara Walker Vol 1. Sand Stitch is a bit like a broken Seed Stitch grin. This stitch is a 4 row repeat even number of stitches.
row 1 and 3 knit
row 2 K1 P1
row 4 P1 K1

Okay so now I had two texture stitches. I liked both and both were fairly easy for me to do in my current state of mindlessness. Said state lead to difficulty in choosing just one for the sweater. Since I had to make a 4 inch or more square of my chosen texture stitch to get my gauge for this sweater I simply made a swatch that gave me about a 5 inch square of each texture. The photo shows my gauge swatch. Sand stitch on top seed stitch below.

I choose the Sand Stitch for my main texture stitch as i really like that shadowy diamond effect.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

textures galore

texture swatch 1
Originally uploaded by spindledreams
For a couple of years now I have been trying to get up the courage to make myself a sweater but lets face it me, depression, and multiple pieces that must match each other in gauge meant it was not going to happen.

This year I really looked at this pattern. The Follow-the-Leader-Aran Knitalong is so prettty and it turns out this beautiful cable sweater pattern is knit in ONE PEICE! YIPPIE! I love cables.

Then I reread the instructions and there is this line something like pick a texture pattern and knit a gauge swatch...

HUH pick a texture pattern with no way of knowing how it will look in MY yarn for MY sweater no way. So begins the story of my swatch.

Monday, October 15, 2007

babies and knitting and visits

It seems like I am getting loads of babies to knit for. My granddaughter Mina was born in August and now I have heard that Angie, my youngest sons girl friend, is pregnant! Then there is the driver we see frequently at work who is only about 8 weeks away from having her baby. I saw her night before last and passed on a pair of baby booties I had crocheted from some bfl handspun. You should have seen her glow :-)

Today I cast on and started a baby blanket for Angie's baby. I am using a nice looking pattern I found online The Castlefair baby blanket is very similar to a hap shawl actually. The center is all garter stitch and then the border and edging are in simple lace patterns making it a very special appearing blanket for a little bit of effort. I do love those type patterns. This one is being made in Caron Simply Soft in their Baby Brights Ombre. I think it is going to be rather pretty. I have enough for the center of the blanket but will buy a solid for the border and edging I think.

Also on the knitting front I made the mistake of buying the new Cat Bordhi book "New Pathways for Sock Knitters" Sigh this book may just make me change my mind about knitting socks. I actually have a couple of pairs now cast on just to see how the different architectures work. If you enjoy knitting socks you really NEED this book.

For those that have followed the news my son Peter was here last weekend for a quick visit. He and his friend Nate were headed to Nate's family in San Digeo but they stayed here for 4 days. While here they got to go see the Avalanche play. Grin they came back grinning from ear to ear asking how I had gotten them club seats for the game... Giggle I had no idea what a club seat was I just got him the best priced seats I could find. Turns out I did a good thing and they claim they are now spoiled for seats anywhere else.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007


As they said in the one cartoon that my sons watched. I got a call at about 1am MST from my oldest who has been in Iraq. He was in Kuwait waiting for his freedom bird :) His large extended family, many of whom he has never met,that will be cheering today.

It feels odd to hear your postman say Semper Fi when he delivers a package from Iraq or hear it at the counter when they see a package to a Marine over there. Uh rah(sp) and Semper Fi have become part of the vocabulary at work too. One driver just had his son get back and now the son and his wife are going to Okinawa, this was their second trip to the sandbox and he is very relived they will be away from it for a while. Now I can pass on that mine is home too :)

It will be even nicer when all are home and that includes those in all the killing zones.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Fair time is over

And I am soooooooo ready for some rest but it is always lots of fun during the fairs. I demo spinning at our local County Fair and of course I have some entries in. This year my biggest project was a shawl in a heavy lace weight/light fingering weight alpaca/silk handspun yarn. The shawl did well at both county fair and state fair earning a first place award both places. The best prize however came after the fairs when the lady I gave it to told me I had made her week! She had the most special goofy smile on. Grin and she looks lots better in the shawl then my borrowed wheel.

I also came home from the fairs with TWO new family members. Little Thunder is a beige roan Peruvian cavy (guinea pig) and Mr. Chips is a broken blue French Angora. Thunder is only 2 months old when he is an adult his coat will put the one on Mr. Chips to shame.

Mr. Chips is my second angora or rather the second I own currently his rabbitry mate is a beautiful red Satin Angora doe who has been making goo goo eyes at him. Grin I told Salsa to keep them eyes to her self she is not getting bred. She is already over 2 and never been bred. To do so now could kill her.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Campanula for the cure moves forward

I got my yarn in from Twinkletoes Yarns and I am busy swatching to see if I need to change needle size to get gauge. The yarn is a pale almost bubblegum pink with areas of lilac and smokey grey. Not enough to distract from the pattern but enough to be noticeable.

In this picture of the yarn you can see a bit of the subtle colors in it besides the pale pink. I think this will be a beautiful pair of socks for someone that likes pink. Grin I already have a couple of willing recipients in mind.

Remember it is not too late to join in and support this great cause. Just go to Campanula for the Cure to learn how.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

I hate knitting Socks

I also don't care much smart know it alls who think that it is just a matter of finding the right pattern or technique. The fact of the matter is I have lots of patterns and I have knit socks but they are far from my favorite item to knit.

So why am I looking at a new sock pattern and have even bought the yarn to knit it with? Because it is for a cause I strongly support. The sock pattern is CAMPANULA for the CURE. You can see it and read all the details at the designers blog

This pattern will be knit in a lovely soft pink yarn from Over The Rainbow Yarns She has some other pink yarns and yarns with pink in them but the one I got was my favorite and was her last skein. Whew glad only one is needed for a pair of socks.

I hope others will join me in my sock knitting.

don't you hate losing all your paswords?

Got a new motherboard for my old system and I followed all the rules and made a nice backup of the information I wanted to make sure I would not lose...

Had problems with old system and my DH got me a brand new system for Mothers Day. YEA! A nice machine with an LCD wide screen monitor etc and Vista operating system.

Vista does not recognize my backup file sigh Nor does XP so here I sit with no information from my backup available and that includes my passwords and user names for my web host and my old blog that was hosted by my domain :-/ not a good situation. Have been wanting to post things but was unable to get in to do so. Finally got tired of that situation and figured Blogger is as good a place to start over as any.

Hope this one stays here for a while but I really want to get into that backup...