Today I downloaded: Shawls and socks

KnitPicksPansyStroll

I recently finished a beautiful, lacy scarf. I blocked it as best as I could with towels and pins, but it just didn’t open as evenly as I hoped it would. I figured it was time: blocking wires.

I had recently received my Knit Picks catalog and while I was adding the wires to my cart, I remembered I needed Soak Wash (have you tried this stuff? It cleans but you don’t have to rinse it out!) and my neighborhood shop didn’t seem to carry it anymore. Of course there are about a hundred yarn and craft stores of all sizes within five minutes of my house, but, well, isn’t online just easier sometimes? And, gosh, if I spend $50 I get free shipping so I PROBABLY should add in some of that beautiful yarn I just saw in the catalog. I’ve heard Knit Picks yarn is really nice to work with so isn’t it my blogging duty to try them out? …

Anxiously knitting

DentistKnitting

This hasn’t been my favorite week. It wasn’t really bad, it’s just been anxious and sad. There have been unexpected changes at work and someone I love to work with was laid off. A new friend from my knitting group will be moving across the country for a great job opportunity and to be closer to family. And I visited the dentist for the first time in a very, very, very long time.

You got hung up on that dentist thing, didn’t you? I know. I’ve made it through a lot of truly scary things in my life. Even at its worst, a dentist appointment is such a little thing. But to me, it isn’t. I don’t know the whys, but I have been truly and completely terrified of the dentist my entire life. I could probably track it back to my mom and her aversion to dentistry. Maybe she said something one time when I was little. I truly don’t know. The why doesn’t matter. I am so afraid that I haven’t been to the dentist for a long time. And it’s been fine. Until now when I found I have a cavity or chip in a back molar. So my husband, being the saint he is, made an appointment for me to make sure I didn’t back out. …

First time charting

I love Malabrigo yarn. It’s soft and squishy and the color is always beautiful. I made my first pair of socks in Malabrigo. They were soft and warm and the beautiful, fluffy loftiness of the yarn found me wearing holes into the bottoms of the socks long before I expected.

After knitting the socks—but before getting the holes—I purchased one skein of worsted Malabrigo in a beautiful purple color. One skein. What could I do with one skein? Because I wasn’t going to make another pair of socks and it might be kinda short for a scarf. …

Pattern collecting

RavelryPatternScreenGrab

 


We all do it. A quiet moment at work. Waiting for dinner. A commercial break during a season finale. That short time before bed when everyone else in the house is asleep.

We search. Maybe for hours. Collecting and saving and downloading patterns we may or may not ever make. But we have them. The beautiful somedays. The potentials. The maybe-if-I-find-the-perfect-yarns.

The free patterns on Ravelry are downloaded. The pay patterns are added to queues and libraries. Websites are visited. Blogs scanned. …

WiP Wednesday: Prickly Pear Socks

This winter I expanded my horizons. I boldly went where no, um,  me had gone before. This winter, I became a sock knitter.

My first pattern was a simple toe-up sock in a worsted Malabrigo (dear, beautiful, soft, Malabrigo). To be super cool, I knit the socks two-at-a-time on Magic Loop from one ball of yarn (which is really easy but makes me look like a magical unicorn knitter when I whip out the project in public).

Having completed a pair of simple socks, I of course decided that was enough practice and could now jump into a patterned sock. I selected the Prickly Pear Sock pattern by Thayer Preece Parker. It looks complicated, but is pretty simple. …

WiP Wednesday: Be Simple Variations

I like to keep a simple, easy to transport knitting project with me at all times. Extra points if I can memorize the pattern (spoiler alert: I’m terrible at memorizing). While I won’t hesitate to buy a new skein of yarn when I’m visiting a shop, I like to “shop my own stash” when starting a new project. This past weekend I headed into my plastic bins to pick my next project and finally decided to knit with one of the gems of my stash: Knitwhits Freia Handpainted Ombre. …

Colonnade Shawl

I’m terrible at remembering to knit things ahead of gift-giving events. Christmas I remember, but I don’t really plan it well so not everyone will get a knit gift. I’m a slow knitter and I really knit for my own enjoyment. It keeps my hands busy. It’s comforting. I love to see the pattern come to life. To see the yarn take shape in something beautiful. And I’ll say it: to marvel at this beautiful piece of art I have created with my own two hands.

This spring I was digging around Ravelry looking for a new shawl pattern (you know, because the dozens I have saved from previous Ravelry searches weren’t quite what I wanted). I came across the pattern for Colonnade Shawl by Stephen West. …

Welcome to fidgety knitter

Close up of knitting

Sometimes, you just need a fresh start. I have had this blog for several years. It was a book review blog to begin with. I love to read and it seemed a great way to keep track of my reading. But it’s a lot of work to blog about books and it wasn’t very fun. Then I tried a “I’ll write about anything I want” blog. But that was a disaster. Without a topic of something I truly loved as the foundation, it seemed disjointed. I couldn’t figure out what to write and who I wanted to read this. It wasn’t fun

So I scrapped everything and spent a lot of time thinking. And knitting. I’m always knitting. When I’m not working or reading, I’m knitting. I can knit while I talk, while I listen, while I watch TV. I usually have a project on or near me. I always have my little bag of notions nearby like a safety blanket.