Monday, September 13, 2010

Where I Have Been.

In August I went to a boot camp in British Columbia. It was phenomenal. I hiked every day in breathtaking scenery, I exercised after dinner every day, I had yoga at 6:30 every morning, I ate 1200 calories every day and I was never hungry, I got a massage almost every day, and I lost 10lbs. Actually, I am told that I lost 11.1 lbs of fat and gained 2 lb of muscle.

I took three genetics articles to work on and three knitting projects and I never took my coputer out of its case (it lived under my bed for two weeks!) and I managed to take my Two-Tone Vest only once and had to put it down - I was just too tired!

It was totally worth it.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Lynne Barr - I Started a New Group

I am just going through Lynne's new book and I have already started the Two-Tone Vest. I just love the simplicity of her design, combined with the unexpected twist.

Her reversible knits make me seriously wonder about how her brain works, just the same way that I wondered with her Knitting New Scarves book. The ideas for the scarves! The 3D designs!
Come join the group and let's all just rave about her!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Got Buttons!

The buttons from Lantern Moon finally arrived. They are beautiful, lovely turquoise colour, made of coconut shell. I sewed them on and they looked lovely with the Summer Tweed.

Then I put on the sweater and the collar still does not lie flat. I will need to knit a large wedge into the back so that it lies flat on the shoulders. The pattern just did not work out for me. I think it is becasue I used the Summer Tweed and not the Donegal Tweed. Will have to cut the middle and use short rows to flatten it out. I really am not looking forward to it.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

I Found My Dream Home!

It is a top floor appartment in a prewar Warsaw building na Rozbracie. Very chichi, actually (I went for lunch in the neigbourhood there in February 09; I did not realize it till today when I found the flyer for the restaurant!)

Two bedrooms, one oval living room, large hallway with French doors to everywhere, large kitchen and pantry. Lovely, lovely herringbone parquet floors.

Only one problem - where do I get $759,000.00? Bummer.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Crochet, crochet, crochet.

I decided that I wanted to complete my Interweave Crochet collection. I managed to find the four early issues that I was missing from people on Ravelry. One has arrived on Thursday, the others I am still wating for.
And InsideCrochet finally made it to my local mega-bookstore. Crochet all around!

Sunday, May 23, 2010


I finally finished the sweater for my Mother. It fits nicely, although it could be better fitted across the back. We went to Stitch in Jordan looking for buttons, but they did not have the size she wanted. I think I finally found what will fit best at the Lantern Moon online store.

We also visited the DyeGuy where Luke made friends with Miss Rusty, the resident mutt. She was lovely.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Two Bits at a Time On Circular Needles.

I always knit both my sleeves at the same time - two skeins, two identical pieces, on two single-pointed needles. This way, even if I make a mistake with increases, they are still identical. Also works for two fronts, you just need to remember to reverse the shaping.

Lately I have been knitting more and more on circular needles - easier on the wrists, takes less space. And - you see the problem, right? With circular needles the work shifts around when you put it down, and it is hard to know where to start when you pick it up again.

Eureka! Attach the two identical pieces with safety pin/stitch marker/whatever, so that the two pieces resemble one, with a right and a left side, and a right edge and left edge. You will only lose your place if you stop in between the pieces, so don't do it!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Not Much New.

Babcia Jacket is still not finished. I thought to finish it for Mother's Day, but then I was not making it for Mother's Day, so I decided not to finish it. It has been languishing on the carpet in my office, blocked for the last two weeks.
I started the sleeves on my Linen Tie Jacket. Considering that I made half of both fronts on 4mm needles instead of 6mm no wonder that I am still is not finished - it should have been finished last week. But otherwise it is going well, even if a bit crooked. It will need serious blocking.
Snuck out to Romni Wool today looking for past issues of Inside Crochet and Interweave Crochet; bought eight skeins of Katia Lino instead. In lovely marmalade color (4 skeins) and in pewter (2 skeins) and two in natural to have enough for the VK Top with Cowl.
On the other front, workwise, a lot is getting done, so I am not complaining. Plus I am on service right now, for all of May.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Something is Not Right.

No matter what I do, it will not turn into a square. I winged this and I thought this is the way to make a square with a laceweight yarn.

Obviously, I thought wrong.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

What a Good Day Means to Me:

- not working, just phoning in and e-mailing PRN;
- finishing "Literary Hoaxes" by Melissa Katsoulis;
- blocking the back and left front of Babcia's Jacket so as to be able to start the right front;

- getting a good hunk of Summer Meadow done so that the circular needle is not a pain anymore;

- spinning for almost one hour and managing to keep up (most of the time)[that's spinning on a bike at a gym, not yarn-spining :-/];
- getting a pedicure and having my toes painted shocking orange;
- stashing up four more skeins of Iro;
- savouring the Olympics again in MacLean's;
- finally finding the February issue of InsideCrochet!!!;

and only one day of work before we fly off with my three boys, four great books, and a good and easy knitting project!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010


I managed to start the square shawl in Sekku. Starting a centre-out pattern on 3mm needles using cobweb-weight yarn reminded me of the former Surgeon General who said that operating on newborns was like trying to stitch together a strand of spaghetti at the bottom of an ice cream dish. Yeah, it was like that. The yarn was too thin and there were too few stitches to keep the needles from falling out. The work kept on twisting around the few stitches on the needle. The pattern needed a few run throughs to become instinctive. But once the latter was achieved, I was able to do it. Now I just have to make it large enough to put it on my Addi Turbo circular needle and my holiday project is ready. We are going to Dominican Republic, for March break. Flying out of Hamilton airport woo hoo! Last time, on the way back it was 24 minutes door to door - airplane to house! That is civilized, unlike Toronto Pearson Int'l.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Monday, February 22, 2010

Moi?! Complain?

I told a friend yesterday that it seems that I only blog when things do not work out. "Now that you mention it... " So, to "mine own self be true" - here is today's dose.

I did not finish the Mora vest yesterday - I was planning to do it during the Canada-US hockey game, but I fiddled with the Sekku instead. Tried doing Citron in it - some people had nice results, but it did not work for me. Especially after I did a whole row of M1 instead of kbfs. Besides, the colors and texture variatiations of the Noro yarn take away from the lovely simplicity of Citron's design. And are lost themselves.

Now I have two Noro projects going nowhere. And I will have to try the Citron in something else.

On a happy front. The colors of the Sekku remind me of summer meadows. In Poland. With poppies, cornflowers and - this is a bit of a stretch - violets. The latter grow more in the spring and in the forests rather than in the fields with poppies. Now I have a title for my project, but no project yet. I bought Mimosa from BadCat designs and I will try the Sekku on it. Keep your fingers crossed.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Wondering Around/Aloud.

I have started the Mora Chevron Vest in Noro Silk Garden. I was soooo happy with my two Noro projects - Tropical Fish and Tequila Sunrise - that I just had to keep going with more Noro.
Well, I am not thrilled with this one.
First. The purple and black in the middle of the vest just don't rock my boat!

Two. Even though I matched the begining of the skein, the colors do not align. The reason - there is a knot in the middle of the first black-green stripe with an added length there.

Three. The wrong side looks - to me - much better than the front!!! I am seriously thinking about reversing the whole kit and kabooddle. It will require dropping the middle stitch and redoing it from the bottom up. I can do it, but will it be worth it?

I went to Main Street Yarns in Milton yesterday and bought two skeins of Sekku, colorway 5, but I am already wondering about the colors in the middle of the skein! The outside is great - poppy with green and white, but there is blue and purple lurking inside. Hmmmmmm.... What to make from cobweb-weight yarn?

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Finishing Day.

I have been waiting for the new issue of Inside Crochet, the English crochet magazine. It was due out on January 25, we always get it a bit later than that, but so long? Has Indigo! decided to not continue it? I have made two fruitless trips to the store in the last four days. Or - perish the thought!- has the magazine folded? Would not be the first time that a new craft title does not make it.

I finished my legwarmers (I really should wash that hallway mirror!), Lukie's socks and added snaps to his Noro sweater. Now I can't wait to do some more Noro and I may make a vest from the Noro book I got - I am on a real Noro bender. But I also looked at the patterns from Noro company itself and they are much nicer, I think. The Noro MiniKnits books is lovely.

And I have been hemming and hawing about buying the new crochet catalogues from Rowan. I really never crochet any garments, but I like having the magazines to look at. And having a whole set of crochet hooks. And pretty much every issue of Interweave Crochet.

Saturday, January 30, 2010


Feeling a bit empty-handed after finishing Tropical Fish (new name for Lukie's sweater courtesy of Jimm) I went to the Needle this afternoon and did some stash therapy. Got a new colourway in Iro - I loved working in it and I am considering making the Ekeby vest in it; got two skeins in Vintage - I love the washed out colors, but I am not sure what to make out of it; and replaced one Noro Silk Garden with a colorway that I liked a lot more.

On the Mama front - she does not want the jacket to be made in anything in wool because she is "allergic" to it and she had to "rip off" the scarf I made for her when we went out on Monday. The colors of the Donegal are also not to her liking. I think that the only way to go is to use Rowan Summer Tweed - colors are great and not a smidgeon of wool in sight. I must swatch it out and see if it will work.

May be I will start Tropical Fishes - the socks in the yarn that Lukie picked out last Friday at Spun. I will make them from the toes up - I seem to always make his socks too small.

On the work front, however, things are really great. Only a week left in on-service (I needed to extend my January coverage so that I could take March break off with the boys), papers are coming along nicely, one got accepted (yey! the blemmy will finally make an appearance in the genetic literature!), submitted another one and have two on the go. Love doing it again - I guess my writing should be in medicine and that's the end of that!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Friday Night.

I frogged the Noro sweater and have redone it to the point where I was before.
On Friday Lukie and I went to Spun for the S'nB. I have only been there once when only two women were present so I was quite stunned to see about 10 sitting around the little table. There was one chair left which I took and Lukie went around exploring.

I explained what had happened to the sweater and received a nice round of moans of sympathy.

Lukie found a sock yarn that he wanted and one must admit that he has quite the eye for color - it will match the Noro sweater just right.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Too Big....

What was your first clue?
Hint: this is meant for an 8 year old boy, who is on the small side.

Currently frogging the wonderful tubular cast off....

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Troubles with Gauge.

My Mother finally agreed to let me make something for her.
It is a Alex, a dressy jacket from Debbie Bliss's Winter Magazine in Donegal Luxury Tweed.
I got the yarn from Julie on Tuesday, but when I use the recommended needles I end up with 3/4 inches missing from my swatch! Ugh! I knew I knit tightly, but so much???
I also got some yarn for Kelly's winter skirt. She is the only skinny-minny who can wear a chunky, cabled miniskirt and still look - well, skinny. I need to swatch it, design it and measure her. That will be traumatic - measuring her!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010


Sunday, January 17, 2010

We Work the Black Seam.

[with apologies to Sting]

Yes, making a top-down raglan sweater is way easier than making it down-up in pieces. Yes, I am a perfectionist and when I bind off this sweater at the waist I have to use a tubular 1:1 rib cast off. And yes, doing it on over 200 stitches borders on insanity. But doing it with one long, long, long bit of Noro Iro? Totally wrecks all the time and seaming that I have saved on doing the top-down raglan sweater.
Loony bin, here I come.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Three Little Brilliances.

Three little epiphanies while making Noro Raglan for Lukie (Noralu):

1. The edge of slipped garter stitch looks massively better and neater if the garter is all PURLS. I would not recommend doing an entire sweater or blanket with purled garter stitch, but it is just brilliant as a little neck edging or buttonhole band.

2. My M1 look a lot worse than a simple twisted "add a stitch". By M1 I mean the "knit into the front and back of a stitch" method of increase, also known as the bar increase. The raglan for Sarah's baby is much more raggedy than the one I am making right now.
3. From the crochet world: working the first row into the bumps of the chain rather than across! It makes the end look like a bound off version or the top of a single or double crochet. And I have been crocheting for almost forty years and did not figure this one out. Sad. Really sad. This idea is from the most recent Inside Crochet out of the UK.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Happy New Yarn.

So much has happened. I started to work very hard at some writing for work, so I have had a lot less time for the blog. Knitting continued, but at a slower pace.
We had a really good Chrismas - my sister and her husband Yeng came from Cambodia (she is liontamer on Ravelry and the engine of Cambodia Knits). They brought lots of puppets and monsters for show, sale and delivery. My sons had a great time with their aunt and uncle, occasionally modelling for Cambodia Knits. Last Tuesday she made a presentation at our knitting guild (The Around the Bay Knitting Guild) guild and that went very well. It was good to have her here for a while, but it had to end.
On Thursday I felt quite blue and I went to the Needle for some yarn therapy. I had been there recently to restash a few yarns, but it was not therapeutic enough. This time I bought some Noro Iro, in spunky blue that I really do not know what I will make from it. Another scarf, may be? But getting it, petting it and sniffing it helped a bit.
Today I got the new Interweave Crochet and the new Inside Crochet came sometime before Christmas. I so seldom crochet, but I love reading about it and looking at different projects. The difference betweeen the UK and the American project types is illuminating - a lot more non-clothing doodads on the European side of the Atlantic.