Sunday, November 29, 2009

Wow, time is flying by! But, the garden is at rest, the wood is all stacked, the leaves have all fallen and been picked up! I'm waiting for the first snow (which is late this year but nobody is complaining) and more time to knit!

Cindy has opened a second store in Petoskey, right on Mitchell Street. It is Cynthia's Too and will be open year 'round with lots of yarn, classes and a place to meet up and sit and knit and a knitting night starting in January!

I have knitted some samples for the new store and have actually spun up some of the romney wool that I bought at the Charlevoix Fiber Arts Festival. "Leo" (aka my spinning wheel) was happy to be back in action. Looking foward to winter (but not all the plowing I will be doing when the real snow comes) and hopefully getting a couple of knitting patterns that have been developing in my brain onto the needles!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Harvesting and Noni Workshop

Harvest time is upon us! I've gotten three rows of potatoes dug, made freezer slaw from one of the Dutch Flathead cabbages (this should be an excellent compliment to our "grown at home" pig) and the blackberries are wonderful this year. Two batches of blackberry freezer jam and two quarts of frozen berries which I plan to take with me when I visit mom. I'm sure she will make me a blackberry pie!
Tomatoes didn't do so well this year, but there are plenty of carrots to dig and winter squash to pick as soon as we get a (shhhh) light frost. Unfortunately Zeke (my 100 pound chocolate lab) ate most of the green beens out of the garden so I only put up two bags in the freezer. And he felt no remorse either!
Also, the wood is all stacked!!!!
AND this is the weekend of the NONI workshop in Mackinaw City. I've got three bags knitted and felted, packed away damp in plastic bags ready for day one....blocking and embellishing! I also found two beautiful brocades at JoAnn Fabrics to use for lining my Hydrangea Bag and my Felted Carpetbag. The other bag, Urban Adventure, I am going to leave unlined for a more organic shape. Should be a fun and very educational workshop!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Fiber Arts Festival in Charlevoix, MI

The Fiber Arts Festival in Charlevoix was wonderful. This is one of the 6 fleeces that I purchased. It is a gray Icelandic fleece from a sheep named Ink. It is now washed and I am awaiting some Alpaca fiber samples which I will blend with it prior to spinning!
I also bought 5 beautiful Romney and Romney X fleeces from Big Hand Farm in Boyne City. The sheep were covered so the VM is minimal and the staple length is 5"-6"! I have one of the fleeces washed and it is a beautiful snowy white with a little luster. I have ordered some Merino top and some Bombyx silk to blend with the Romney. Time to get the dyepots out!
I also bought some yarn from Briar Rose for a couple of projects that I would like to knit. I think I have enough projects to keep me busy for the (shhhh) winter!
But the best find at the festival was a woolpicker!! I have been shopping on the internet for one and decided to wait until after the fiber festival. I was not really expecting to find one but I stopped in a booth shared by 4 women to look at the Icelandic fleece pictured above. As I was standing there talking to one of the ladies, out of the corner of my eye I spotted it sitting in the corner with a price tag on it. As it turned out, it was made by the husband of the lady to whom I was talking. As soon as I touched it, I new it had found a home!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Two at a Time Socks

Here are my first ever "magic loop" socks, and two at a time! It is the Twilight pattern from the book 2-at-time socks by Melissa Morgan Oaks. While I enjoyed having "a pair" of socks at the end of the process, I had a little trouble manipulating the needles, the extra cable and two balls of yarn. I normally knit one sock at a time on two circular needles and during the magic loop process it seemed to me that I was spending a lot of time situating everything so that I could knit rather than actually knitting. However, these are not the first and last pair that I will ever do. I think with more practice I could knit them almost as fast as on two circs!
Hey, I finally got to finish a project! This weekend I'll be off to the Fiber Art Festival at Castle Farms in Charlevoix, Mi. It's sure to be lots of fibery fun!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Too Busy to Knit?

Summer is flying by and there have too many things on the "to do" list and not much time to knit. I've been busy with the flower gardens and the vegetable garden. I bought some new perrenials and the flower gardens are doing well. As for the veggie garden, things that like cold weather are doing great but still behind schedule. We should be eating fresh green beans and new potatoes by now. The green beans are just starting to flower and new potatoes appear to be a couple of weeks away.

I've also been busy stacking wood, as you can see. I've gotten about half of it stacked.......

and the other half is a work in progress! One advantage of a cooler than average summer.

I have been knitting a little bit and almost have a pair of socks finished, which I will post a picture of as soon as they come off the needles!!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Little Dipper Vest Pattern is Available

This is the Little Dipper vest. The pattern is designed for young girls, approximate ages 2 thru 10 and worked in the Star Stitch pattern. The pattern and project info is available here and payable through PayPal.

Telegraph Road Pattern is Available

Boy, do I make a poor model! Anyway here is a picture of me wearing the Telegraph Road Cardigan and the pattern is available for purchase at Knitting Knorth Designs.
I am also offering this as a class this spring at Cynthia's Fine Yarn and Gifts in Mackinaw City, Mi.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Where I've Been

I have had more than enough "stressful situations" to deal with lately. Mike made his annual journey to the V.A. medical center in Millwaukee on May 3rd. Without going into detail, suffice it to say that his '74 Monte Carlo burned to the ground on the way there. Luckily, I still have him!

While he was in Milwaukee for 2 weeks I had to deal with remodeling his bathroom also. All the tile was removed (floor and shower walls), drywall repair, a new coat of the oddest color of paint (called ladyfinger, looks like a golden brown twinkie) and all new tile plus a heating mat under the floor tile which he will absolutely love, if we ever get the right control unit and can actually use it! Also waiting on the tile guy to come back and do something with the areas of gray grout which are supposed to be almond.

I've also been trying to get the flower gardens into shape and plant my vegetable garden but the weather has not been cooperating. We are in the first week of June and it is still freezing at night. I have planted my brassica's, winter squash and cucumbers (lost one to frost, even covered) but my peppers and tomatoes are moving in and out of the garage every day. I did get my seeds planted yesterday: carrots, beets, kohlrabi, radishes and lettuce and the potatoes have been in the ground for a couple of weeks. No sign of them yet!

I have also been doing a little knitting. My brain was under a lot of stress and I started a new design so I had something to focus on. It is a cardigan for children ages 2 thru 10 and knit in KnitCol, a self patterning yarn. It doesn't have a name yet but here is a preview, not quite finished yet! Toes not included.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Cynthia's Annual Spring Luncheon

Here is part of the gang that came out on April 25th to enjoy the annual spring luncheon put on by Cynthia's Fine Yarn and Gifts in Mackinaw City. An afternoon of friendship, games, sharing, laughter and fun. Plus a preview of the new exciting patterns and yarns in the yarn shop!

Jenny won the big door prize (on the table in front of her) and is showing the bee sweater that she knitted for Avery (first grandchild)!

Jean with her felted "hand bag"!
The hands are felted cutouts traced from her grandchildrens hands. How cool!

Martha and Myrna in the background during show and tell.

Martha Myrna and Sherry play the "Know Your Fiber" game as Jamie cheating!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Just Enough Ruffles Done

Spring has sprung, well almost. We had some nice days and I was busy working outside, trying to get as much done as I could, before the blackflies come out (that is another story). Hubby and I got the yards cleaned, a whole new yard planted with grass seed and the screen room cleaned and ready for summer and I was too tired to knit. I hate when that happens...I get the lovely yarn out of the knitting bag, get all comfy and there I sit with the project in my lap for hours, not one stitch knitted. We've all been there I guess.

Well the last two days have been almost winter-like. Cold and rainy, perfect knitting weather! And I finally got one of the three projects finished that I started for Malabrigo March in the Malabrigo Junkies group over on Ravelry. Here is my version of Just Enough Ruffles:

As for my designs, I have finished my Mitered Panels Cardigan for Adults (pics to be posted soon) which is based on my Mitered Panels Cardigan for Kids but with a different neck line. This along with Little Dipper, Telegraph Road and a new free pattern (which will also be posted here) will debut this Saturday at Cynthia's annual spring luncheon! How exciting.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Two Test Knitters

I have lost two of my test knitters who were working on the Telegraph Road cardigan.

candy1380 is a volunteer for the Red Cross and was deployed to Fargo ND until the end of April. As she said, there was no room in her bag for her sweater project and working 15 hours a day, 7 days a week leaves no time for knitting. Hope you stay safe out there!

mugginsquilts is the victim of outright theft. Somebody broke into her truck and stole the bag that had her sweater in progress (over half finished) and the yarn for it. And she has no yarn to make another one. All those hours of knitting, and it's just gone. Hope the yarn fairies are watching over her!

We also had a snowstorm on the 29th, 6 to 8 inches of wet, heavy snow. Lucky for
me I had taken the snowplow off my truck so I got to knit and Mike got to move snow with his tractor!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

The Worms Have Arrived or The Cutest Buttons Ever

The buttons have arrived for the Little Dipper Vest and they are sewn on! If you are looking for the most adorable buttons, check out Gold Seal Products .
So far so good, Telegraph Road and Little Dipper are in the hands of several test knitters to whom I owe a mountain of thanks. Everything has gone smoothly so far! Thanks also to Wiste for creating a wonderful resource for bringing designers and willing testers together in the Free Pattern Testers Group!
I'm falling further behind on my Malabrigo Junkies KAL's but am swatching for two new design ideas, an adult cardigan and a summer dress for young girls!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Little Dipper Vest

This is what I have been working on for the last two weeks. The pattern is written as a short, slightly oversized vest for young girls, approximately 2 to 10 years of age. My husband came up with the name Little Dipper when I showed it to him and told him I was having trouble coming up with a name relating to little girls and stars (which is a reference to the stitch pattern used). It made sense in that someday I would like to design an adult version, Big Dipper.

And as an update to my Malabrigo March KAL's, here is a picture of my gauge swatch with the chosen buttons for my February Lady Sweater. I beat the March 31st deadline and cast on last night!

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Telegraph Road

My latest design, Telegraph Road, is finally finished and the pattern written but not released yet. It is worked in a slipped stitch pattern, Dots and Dashes, from which its name is derived. It is worked in two yarns, Berroco Ultra Alpaca and ShiBui Knits Merino Kid with finished chest sizes of 36", 40", 44", 48" 52". I haven't yet captured the elusive "perfect picture". For some reason it is hard to photograph (could be my camera skills are lacking).

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Malabrigo Junkies May Put Me Over the Edge

Not that my knitting itinerary is not full enough, I went and joined the Malabrigo Junkies group on Ravelry. Then I proceeded to join three of the KAL's. There are plenty to choose from but I am trying to limit it to three!

New Rule: as long as you have the needles open for a new project, go ahead and cast on. Note to self.... buy more needles!

So, now I am in the Forest Canopy Shawl KAL, The Just Enough Ruffles KAL and the February Lady Sweater KAL. That is my yarn for the February Lady Sweater in the dyepot. It was Mal worsted merino in Jewel Blue, now it is Mal worsted merino in Jewel Blue overdyed with a mix of Fuschia and Violet! Much prettier (IMO) but now I have to wait for it to dry before I can cast on.
I am going to try to post more often, but I would rather knit. For now I will be sitting at the computer writing the pattern for a new cardigan that I designed. Is it going to be Telegraph Road or Morse Code?

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Snow Returns

I've been busy working on a couple of new patterns and enjoying the time spent not having to plow. I haven't had to plow for a least two weeks and have had some extra time to knit! we have about 5 inches of new snow and more on the way, back to shoveling and plowing. I will still find time to knit!!!!

Friday, February 6, 2009

Knitting Knorth is OPEN

This is Meta's Six Panel Sweater for Kids and is my first listing in my pattern store, Knitting Knorth Designs, on Ravelry. The finished sizes range from 24" to 32" chest and it is constructed with six panels but only two sewn seams at the shoulders. The side seams are joined with a 3 needle bind off and the sleeves are pick up and worked in the round down to the cuff. A simple but fun knitting project!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

New Pattern Prototype

I just finished the "prototype" of the new pattern I'm designing but I couldn't get a good picture of it. It is a cardigan, in baby sizes with I-cord trim along the front bands and set in sleeves with a "surprise". I'll see how it debuts at knitting group tomorrow night and find some buttons for it!
Now I'm off to do some mindless knitting for the evening. I'm going to start the Domino Blanket by Lucy Neatby for one of the babies on the way. (not mine!) Mitered knitting...I love it.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Mitered Stripes Felted Bag

This little felted bag is constructed with mitered squares on point (which makes them diamonds). A semi solid and a self striping yarn are worked alternately and stranded up the side of the module being knit and stitches are picked up from the previous modules to build the next module (no sewing). An I-cord edge is applied to the top and an I-cord strap is knitted and sewn on after felting. The approximate finished size is 10” wide by 9” tall. The strap can be adjusted by trimming it after felting, before sewing it on to the bag.

Yarn: M.C. Malabrigo Merino Worsted ,( 216 yds per 100 g skein) 1 skein in color Apple Green
C.C. Noro Kureyon, (110 yds per 50 g ball) 1 ball in color #209
Needles: Size 11 (8.00 mm) 24” circular and D.P.’s
Size J crochet hook
Stitch markers, darning needle etc.
Two coordinating buttons
Gauge: 3 sts per inch in garter stitch

The mitered modules are worked with a Centered Double Decrease as follows:
CDD: Slip 2 sts together knit wise from left hand needle to right hand needle, knit the next stitch on the left hand needle, pass the two slipped sts over the st just knitted and off the right hand needle.
This stitch will be purled on the return (wrong side) row, creating a line of stockinet stitch.

Bag Body
Row 1: (RS) With M.C. cast on 49 sts. On subsequent rows this will be worked as: With M.C., knit to 1 st before center st, CDD, knit to end.
Row 2: (WS) Knit to center st., Purl 1, knit to end.
Row 3: With C.C. knit to 1 st before center st, CDD, knit to end.
Row 4: Knit to center st., Purl 1, knit to end.
Continue as established, alternating colors every two rows, working a CDD every right side row and purling that stitch on the wrong side row until 1 st. remains. Pull tail through and mark the last st. This will be the top, front of Block 1.
With M.C. and right side facing, starting just to the left of the marked stitch, pick up and knit 25 sts along the left hand edge of Block1. Continue along the cast on edge, pick up and knit 24 sts along this edge and ending just to the right of the CDD line at the top, back of Block 1.
Work as for Block 1.
Block 3 is worked along the opposite side of Block 1 as for Block 2: With M.C. and right side facing, starting just to the left of the CDD line at the top, back of Block 1, pick up and knit 25 sts along cast on edge, pick up and knit 24 sts along the right hand edge of Block 1 thus ending just to the right of marked st at the top, front of Block 1.
Work as for Block 1.
Block 4 and 5 are worked opposite each other between Blocks 2 and 3 and are half the size.
With front of bag and right side facing and M.C., starting in the 13th ridge from the top of Block 3 pick up and knit 12 sts along the left hand edge, 1 st. in the marked st at the top, front of Block 1, 12 sts along the edge of Block 2 (ending 12 ridges from the top of Block 2). Work as for block 1 until 5 sts remain ending with a RS row and M.C. Place these sts on hold.
Work as for Block 4 on the back side of the bag between Blocks 2 and 3 until 1 st remains. Pull tail through and cut yarn.
With the back of the bag and right side facing and M.C., starting at the top ridge to the left of the top st of Block 2, pick up and knit 12 sts along the edge, 1 st in the bottom corner, 12 sts along the right hand edge of Block 5 ending at the right of the top st.
Work as for Block 5.
With the back of the bag and right side facing and M.C., starting at the top ridge to the left of the top st of Block 5, pick up and knit 12 sts along the edge, 1 st in the bottom corner, 12 sts along the right hand edge of Block 3 ending at the right of the top st.
Work as for Block 5.

With M.C. measure out a tail of yarn about 30” long. Do not cut. With a 24” circular needle and the front of the bag facing, start picking up sts with the measured tail (starting at the measured point and working towards the end, not towards the ball of yarn) at the top of Block 3 and ending at the top point of Block 2 as follows: Pick up 1 st in the top point of Blocks 3 and 2, pick up 1 st for each ridge, pick up 1 st at the bottom corners and 5 sts across the sts on hold. Now go back to where you started picking up sts, with RS facing and a spare D.P. needle cast 3 sts onto the right end of the circular needle working with the yarn that’s there waiting. Start working Attached I-cord as follows: *Knit 2 sts, knit the next 2 sts tog through the back loop. Slide the sts back to the left needle and repeat from *.
Work I-cord across the front edge except when you come to the two bottom corners: work to 1 st before the bottom corner st and work the next 2 sts together while attaching I-cord (like a K3TOG through the back loop). ALSO, work 1 rnd of unattached I-cord at each end of the 5 sts that were on hold. Do not cut yarn when you reach the top of Block 2.
Continue along the back flap edge:
Pick up 1 st for each ridge across the edge and at the points of the two diamond flaps work a K1,YO,K1 in the top center st of each flap. Pick up one st in the edge of the front I-cord at the top of Block 3. Turn and knit back across these sts. Turn, cast on 3 sts and work attached I-cord across the existing sts. Bind off.
Sew the little gaps under where the two I-cords meet at each top edge of the bag.

Cut two 30” lengths of M.C. yarn and fold in half. At the points of Blocks 6 and 7 and with the crochet hook, pull the fold of the yarn through and chain to the end. Pull tail through to secure. These can be trimmed to your liking after felting.

With D.P.’s and M.C., cast on 4 sts and work I-cord for 50”. Bind off.

Weave in any ends and felt the bag and the strap in the washing machine to your liking. Block the bag and let dry. Sew the strap on with matching thread, placing the ends of the strap about 11/2” to 2” from the top at the sides of the bag.
Sew the buttons to the front of the bag just below the points of the two flaps and wrap the button loopers around them to secure the flaps.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Some Handspun Yarn

We had a power outage for several hours a couple of weeks ago so without my light to knit by I got out my wheel and grabbed some fiber out of my stash and and did some spinning. I finished a second skein yesterday since it was too cold and windy to go outside. This is from a 75% Romney, 25% mohair roving purchased from Linden Lane Farm and has been in my stash for a long time. The colors in the roving are blue fuschia and golden yellow. I have enough left to do one more full skein plus. I haven't taken time to spin for sometime and enjoyed the rhythm of the wheel and the twist going into the fiber, very centering indeed.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

I'm a Ravelry Designer/Snowshoeing Buddies

Here are my two snowshoeing buddies. Piper is the small chocolate lab on the left and he is one year old and Zeke is the HUGE chocolate lab on the right and he is three years old. Looks like we'll have to take a break from snowshoeing as the weatherman is calling for snow and highs not above zero. More time for knitting and spinning!

I found out on Friday that I am now a designer listed on Ravelry!! My design profile can be viewed here, and I'm waiting to be added so I can set up my Ravelry store. Exciting, yayyy. Now I'm off to do some spinning and unwinding (er, relaxing).

Thursday, January 8, 2009

A Day of Sunshine

Yesterday we had snow so I had to go out and shovel and plow this morning but the sunrise was beautiful and we had sunshine all day. I even got my snowshoes out and took Piper and Zeke out for some exercise. Now the sun has set and it's time to work on knitting!

Monday, January 5, 2009

This project has been "resting" so I pulled it out and started the sleeves. I'm not sure what I am going to do with the bands yet. Maybe just I-cord? Hmm.....

I also finished my third Mitered Panels Cardigan yesterday and found the cutest ladybug buttons for it. This is the smallest size (20" chest) and will be displayed at Cynthia's for the summer. The pattern will be available after I finish the process to be a designer on Ravelry!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Hand Dyed Yarns

The first yarns I hand dyed this year. There are 3 skeins in each colorway of Ultra Alpaca dyed for Cynthia's Fine Yarn and Gifts. They will be kitted up for the Sonoma Shawl and she is going to take them to Knit Michigan on Feb. 07 2009.
I finished a Mitered Panels Cardigan for Kids last night, just have to sew on the buttons. This one will be an in store model and hopefully the pattern will be available soon on Ravelry!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year 2009

A new year and my first blog. I have a lot of expectations and not enough time. Hopefully the year will be full of knitting, new designs, spinning and dyeing!