Sunday, January 27, 2013

Mattress Stich.

I think I've got it!

Could be a lot neater, but for the first time and in this flimsy yarn (excuses, I know) it's pretty good.
 And I get to practice much more with Jack's sweater that I am knitting right now.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Spot the difference!

and when you do, you are allowed to call me a complete idiot!


I have no idea how this happened, I was not drinking, I was not toking, I was only watching Criminal Minds!
And I went on to block the darn thing before I noticed it!

Monday, January 21, 2013

To Frog or Not To Frog?

I will out myself as a complete idiot here, but I have discovered another mistake in my Mimosa Shawl! The knit stiches are supposed to be twisted, i.e., knit into the back leg. Yes, it is clearly stated in the instructions, yes, I remember reading it, and yes, in the whirl of broken needles, wrong size needles, and forgetting the rest rows I forgot to twist the knits! So sue me!

The designer, Andrea, says that I could just continue with the patters without twisting the stitches. A part of me wants to, but that other, loud and insistent, perfectionistic part, wants to frog.

I have not decided yet!

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Koumbaros Scarf

Two weeks ago my husband and I got married again in the Greek Orthodox Church. He proposed to me again on our twenty-second wedding anniversary on October 6th. In front of our sons!

We wanted to have as many people from our small family there so we arranged the wedding to take place when my Cambodian-living sister and brother-in-law were in town for Christmas. Having settled the date for January 4th, 2013 we only had one thing left to do - find a koumbaros.

A koumbaros is a very important part of the Orthodox wedding ceremony - he holds and exchanges the crowns and exchanges the rings three times after the priest puts them on. And as he does so, he becomes a part of our family. Usually it is the groom's best friend. Well, Jimm does not have any friend that are Greek Orthodox and his only brother who was our best man at our first wedding died four years ago. We were in a bit of a pickle until Father Theo asked John M. to be our koumbaros.

We liked him instantly. He took his duties very seriously and took great care of us. So I made him a Striped Noro Scarf.

And then I wrapped it really nicely. Made labels.

It took nearly as long to wrap it properly as it did to knit it! Well, may be not, but it was quite a production.

End product.

And he loved it!

Thank you John!

Friday, January 18, 2013

Happiness Is...

switching from short toothpicks to a circular needle!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Lace Knitting It Is Not!

Knitting The Mimosa Shawl was bordering on drudgery and I was nearing the point when I stick the short toothpicks of needles into my eyeballs for entertainment. But as I thought that I was knitting lace (as opposed to producing knit lace where every other row is a rest row, purl in the flat and knit in round knitting) I persevered.

For three days I thought I was advancing into the stratosphere of knitting techniques only to find out today that “All even numbered rows are knit plain and are not charted”!


Inattentivness to pattern instruction does not make one a knitting astronaut.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Is It Meant to Be?

First clue? Broken Knitter's Pride sock needles in 3.25mm. I bought them a year ago and have never used them. Thought that they would be great for starting the slippery silk yarn, which falls off the four needles as I knit the first few rows. Brought the whole kit and kaboodle with me to work in a backpack (which, in hindsight, might not have been the best idea). Opened the case (the fastening broke into smithereenes, but I digress) and took out - two needles and six pieces!

I did not give up! Cast on 3mm needles - so there! Starting a centre out project in thin yarn and tiny needles is not for the weak of heart. But the friction of the wooden needles definitely kept the yarn on! Woo hoo!
After work I went to Needle Emporium and bought 3.5 mm wooden needles from Julie. Now to cast on again.
 PS. This is the Flying Cranes stole as I took it off the needles last night. May be I shouldn't have?

Monday, January 14, 2013


So it looks like Flying Cranes is not the right project for Claudia Handpainted Silk Lace after all. I am almost done and I have only used 40 gms of the 100 gm skein. I need to find some other pattern that will use up this whole 1100 yards monster!

I may try Camino Leaves, but I am not sure. It still does not take up the whole skein. On the other hand, squre shawls like Corfu and Mimosa need a lot more. Well, Mimosa does not, but I always wanted to make it in pink and even bought a yarn for it - but of course I did not buy enough! How cosmically jinxed is that? I have enough blue-green yarn that was supposed to be sea-related to make Mimosa which was supposed to be pink. And I have not enough pink yarn to make the pink confection that I always thought Mimosa was supposed to be, but it will suffice for a sea-titled/related one. Pink seas anyone?

I think that I will make a blue-green Mimosa. I have already bought the pattern, I have the right yardage, it is meant to be. Now to frog.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Wants and Needs...

a yarn bowl:

knitting bags in many colors and with "Paws off My Knitting" and "Shh... I'm Counting" and "Tangled String" labels.

And need:

a hanging circular needle case:

Friday, January 11, 2013

Flying Cranes Stole and Knitting Silk.

Working away at this. Started it just after Xmas and I was about 2 inches into it when I dropped a stitch and needed to frog it. Luckily I did not need to frog the cable cast on! It was 300 stitches with a slippery needle and a slippery yarn - not much fun.

Will keep bloody-mindedly going on with it. I need to finishi it, becasue it is the last thing that I am willing to try with this yarn. Claudia Handpaineted Silk Lace - 100% silk in an exquisite blue-seagreen. It was a total impulse purchase, right after I discovered Ravelry and all the wonders therein. Subconsciously I must have seen this yarn hanging by the door of the Needle Emporium for months before that. And then - not thinking exactly about it I went to the story looking for "turquoise-Caribbean" yarn. And there it was. And I had to buy it. And now - five years later - I still do not know what to make with it. Silk is deceptive - soft which turns slippery when you knit it, smooth which turns fuzzy after you wear it. And non-blockable. And non-stretchy. In a word - difficult. And not so pretty when knit up.

Hah! This is new! I cannot upload photos directly from my computer! Whose idea is that?!

Sunday, January 6, 2013

New Year's Update.

Finished Jimm's Hiker. This is the first sweater that I have knit for my husband. Ever. Finished it on the day of our second marriage. Twenty-two years ago we were married in a Roman-Catholic Church. Jimm is Greek-Orthodox and this ceremony was not recognized by his church. We have been talking about doing it in the Ortodox Church for years, but it never happened. In fact, I thougth that we would "elope" and do it in Greece. But we ended up doing it at home, in Canada. It was wonderful.

Now I am making a Striped Noro Scarf for our koumbaros. We met John two days before the wedding and liked him instantly. He took great care of us and of our wedding. So he will get a silk-mohair hand-knitted scarf. Although I am not sure about the color choices. Will see how it continues to stripe, but I find these particular colors a bit too bold and saturated.

I have many other knitting plans for this year. We shall see how many of them will actually materialize. Some have to do with destashing, some with frogging, some with knitting for my sons and my husband. And some with finally donating things to charity.