Tag Archives: shawl

The Ravellenic Games Main Event Project!


I joined the Ravellenic Games for the first time this year and I went all out for Team Sasquatch! My main event was Event Shawl, but I also signed up for Event Charity, Event Single Skein and Event Modular (which was a huge mistake but more on that another day).

My main event was to knit a shawl. Since my disgrace with the Fiori Autunalli by Rosemary Hill I have been downright scared of knitting lace. Did I mention the disgrace came from 1. Reading the wrong chart 2. knitting the wrong chart 3. switching rows while knitting the wrong chart and 4. frogging about 1,000 sts in tears at my LYS? Word to the wise friends and neighbors, don’t knit when you’re too tired to remember your middle name!

Anyway, here I am rambling again! I choose for my Games piece a shawl knitted in worsted, I felt like it was my knitting equivalent of a nightlight. So The Lonely Tree Shawl by Silvia Bolvia (which is not only amazing fun to knit but FREE on Ravelry) seemed like the perfect choice. I gathered up some Caron Simply Soft in Dark Sage from my yarn stash and was off!

Humble Little Beginnings

Humble Little Beginnings

I was going really slow until the leaves started to emerge, trying to remember that lace knitting is only as hard as I let it be in my head. Once I got to this point I felt kinda confident.

(Disclaimer: Some lace knitting really is freakishly difficult, my problem lies in my lack of confidence after mucking up the same pattern so many times.)

and it kept growing….

and it kept growing….

and growing...

and growing…

Before I knew it, it was time to bind the bad boy off. I felt bad for not picking a harder, more involved project at this point though. I know that point of the games is/was to challenge yourself, and I stand by my reasoning that I had to conquer my fear of lace – otherwise the Fiori is never going to get done.

But my shawl is done!

Blocking

Blocking

High Def filter - I love the leaves!

High Def filter – I love the leaves!

Leaves! Done correctly!

Leaves! Done correctly!

It's about 350 yards - much bigger than it looks.

It’s about 350 yards – much bigger than it looks.

Aww….Happy Place!

Aww….Happy Place!

So there you have it friends and neighbors, the first leg of my Ravellenic journey came to an end. I’ve already given the shawl to a friend. I forgot to take a picture on the mannequin but I gotta tell you – giving away something that gave me a little confidence was pretty epic!

Happy Tuesday!

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All Aboard the Hogwarts Express!


Since my last post was very word heavy, lets make this one picture heavy shall we? I tried to take pictures of the progress of my Hogwarts Express Shawl by Susan Ashcroft. It was a lovely gift from a friend for my birthday – no worries if your reading this, I will keep your identity safe. 🙂 I used Malabrigo Sock Yarn  (my first time working with Malabrigo – also a gift) in Cordovan. Any other information you would like to know about my project – or the minuscule tweaks I made with 440 yards of this luxurious yarn, click HERE.  Otherwise, let me let the pictures talk for themselves.

The Yarn was already caked.

The Yarn was already caked.

The set-up with my yarn pet.

The set-up with my yarn pet.

Lovely, calming garter stitch.

Lovely, calming garter stitch.

The yarn is oh so pretty.

The yarn is oh so pretty.

Garter section is done

Garter section is done

The owls have eyes - all 34 of them!

The owls have eyes – all 34 of them!

Max does not like being stared at.

Max does not like being stared at.

Completed at 4am

Completed at 4am

I can't quit taking it's picture.

I can’t quit taking it’s picture.

On the bed in the basement

On the bed in the basement

Still pretty darn stunning

Still pretty darn stunning – and my favorite picture.

Friends and neighbors, I love this shawl!!

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Knitting Panic Monster & Finished Objects


Max admonishing me for not knitting my sock.

Max admonishing me for not knitting my sock.

I was sitting in a waiting room today, mindlessly knitting on a project when it struck me….I appear to be suffering from knitting ADHD. Usually, my best brainwaves happen in the shower – years of showering in the dark, preparing to make my body think it is nighttime and thus time to think, removes all the fuzz from my brain. But sitting in this waiting room today it just hit me: I am afraid to finish my big projects because I am afraid I am going to muck them up.

This is silly. My Panic Monster may be in fine form lately but I refuse to be beaten by the means of that little bugger. So going home I told my husband I was going to finish two projects today – turns out I finished three. 🙂

Sock 1 of 2.

Sock 1 of 2.

So this is the first sock of my third pair. I am no longer really following a pattern – just taking bits and pieces from a lot of patterns to find something that I like. Despite doing the toe decreases a little wonkily the sock fits like a dream! I also really like Patons Jacquards – this on is the Aqua Jacquard, and working with size 2.25mm needles really isn’t that scary.

The Boneyard Shawl is FINISHED!!!!

The Boneyard Shawl is FINISHED!!!!

11474926796_8640bc545cThis, friends and neighbors, is my finished Boneyard Shawl! It is a free pattern on Ravelry by Stephen West (he was the one who designed the Dustland Hat, which is awesome) and I love it! I should be embarrassed to show a picture of it before it’s bath and block, but I am so excited that I finally finished it. I did the Russian Lace Bind Off for Cast On, Bind Off which is gloriously stretchy, and the yarn is Bernat Mosaic in Aura. I don’t really like this yarn to be honest, but the color progression is lovely, so I will forgive it. Again, it was another long-term project that was languishing in my cabinet, just waiting for me to put in a couple of hours and finish it.

My Design!

My Design!

This super bulky, cabled cowl is one of the first of (hopefully many) my designs. I geared up my noggin, picked up some sticks and string and let it rip 😉

It was knitted on size 15US needles with Lions Brand Hometown USA in Little Rock Granite. It may be acrylic yarn but it knit up really nicely, and more importantly handles the two cable needles and 9 stitch cable really well. The only problem I’ve encountered is the seaming, everything lines up perfectly but there is that little row where the sewing shows – if you’re looking. Which…I am.

I would really like to write-up the pattern but don’t think I should until I figure out the seam – what would be the point of putting it out there without a way to finish it seamlessly? Hmm….I find the whole thing a little baffling.

One day, three projects and I feel like attacking everything in my knitting cabinet. I was fortunate that my WIP cabinet is in our den, if it was still in the basement the burst pipe would have taken all this work. Now I just have to tackle that sweater….and with that friends and neighbors, I will leave you with my thoughts on that!

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Multiple WIPs to Combat Hand Fatigue


I was able to pick up my needles this week but quickly realized that I was going to have to find a sweet spot to appease both of my hands. This gave me the best excuse to cast on several projects, I mean, I have to keep my hands happy!

I have found that different types of needles, different needle sizes and different types of yarn are the best way to keep my hands from feeling any fatigue – also, I never get bored working on one project. Pretty awesome in my book, maybe this whole arthritis thing isn’t so bad after all! 😉 So here is my WIP run down:

Size 2US DPN – Sock Weight Yarn – Patons Jacquard & Stripe Socks #104

What a finished pair looks like. It smells like victory though!

What a finished pair looks like. It smells like victory though!

I casted on another pair of these immediately after I finished the first, I am only on the ribbing so no picture yet, but they are fantastic to knit and easy on both hands.

Size 4 Circular Needles – Lace Weight – Fiori Autunnali Shawl

What it looks like finished - photo courtesy of  teresat2 on Flickr

What it looks like finished – photo courtesy of teresat2 on Flickr

This pattern is from the Craftsy Class New Directions in Lace. It is an incredible early Christmas present from my Mom – and there are beads! I am still a bit daunted by how much work it is going to take to finish this beast, but it’s just so pretty I don’t care. Romi Hill creates the most beautiful work and her class is so full of information I’m surprised it didn’t cost more. If you like lace, like learning, want to try something new and work with a stellar pattern – go sign up for this class.

This is where I am in the pattern:

Yes. I am scared to take off the belly button cast on.

Yes. I am scared to take off the belly button cast on.

Size 5US Circular Needles – DK Weight Yarn – Jayashri Sweater

Jayashri Pullover from Knit Picks

Jayashri Pullover from Knit Picks

This is the kalallnight that Stacy over at Musings and Motion and I are making. The pattern is available from Knit Picks and if you still feel the urge to join feel free! I have a feeling that Stacy will finish way before I do and I wouldn’t mind the company! Here is where I am so far:

jayashri sweater - week 4

Size 7US Circular and DPN – Worsted Weight – “Hat on the Brain”

I have gone on a mini design kick trying to make a bunch of different beanies. I am trying to have a very styled brim (usually combinations of stitch dictionaries) and working my way through a list of hat decreases. I just finished the one last night, the rusty orange beanie above ↑ so I will need to cast on another one today.

Size 8US Straight 7″ Needles – Worsted Weight – Looped Loop Cowl

Courtesy of Ravelry. © lavidaloca

Courtesy of Ravelry. © lavidaloca

Here is a super fun cowl by Kirsten Johnstone that I just had to cast on – despite the fact that straight needles make both my hands hurt and the pinkie on my right hand usually gets rubbed raw ( you know, since it just lays there and doesn’t move…man…that sounds super dirty ;)). Anyway, I had to give it a go and here is the progress:

Total length needs to be 44" - still a bit to go.

Total length needs to be 44″ – still a bit to go.

Oh! For fun, here is Lucy Neatby showing the coolest provisional cast on I have ever done.

And finally….

Size 15US Straight Needles – Two Strands DK Weight – Eyelet Scarf

This was another attempt to create something out of my own noggin….and some stitch dictionaries. I am trying to combine different variations on eyelet patterns so it looks swirled. I started it before I hurt my left hand so I can only work on it maybe 20 minutes a day. The color is beautiful though so I don’t mind looking at it everyday.

So Far...

So Far…

So that’s the low down on my WIPs for Wednesday. I hope you’ve enjoyed my ranting and hopefully I have given you an excellent excuse to cast on more projects – you must think of the health of your hands!

So friends and neighbors I am interested to hear, if you would like to share, how you combat both boredom and hand fatigue. I was once a fairly monogamous knitter (no more that three projects going at a time) so this is all new to me. Feel free to share – I love to listen!

What a Wonderful Weekend ♥


This weekend I turned off my computer – turned off any access to the internet at all and embraced a simpler life. I gardened, I went for long walks, I read and most importantly I rediscovered my love for knitting. It sounds strange that just three days could change my perspective – I guess I owe that in large part to all of you. My own version of the constant readers. 😉

I owe all of you a great deal of thanks. Praise and admiration for all of you that helped me clear my head and rid me of my Panic Monster. All of your comments, your feedback and you kind words reminded me that if you love something, well, that’s all that matters. I could write thousands of words in this post, but I think I will let the photos speak for themselves.

Thank you so much for reminding me that I truly love my craftiness.

♥♥ The Shawl ♥♥

My Baby Being Blocked.

My Baby Being Blocked.

It’s had a bath, it’s being blocked and I am just head over heels in love with it!

♥♥ The Cowl. The Cape. The Shrug. All in One ♥♥

The Stash Busting Beauty.

The Stash Busting Beauty.

I have been sitting on this pattern for months, the beautiful little stash buster that it is. So my aunt Kathy’s Christmas Present is all done!

♥♥ Hexipuffs for My Beekeeper’s Quilt ♥♥

Hexipuffs.

Hexipuffs.

I haven’t made a single hexipuff for weeks! I’ve been so busy worrying about selling that I forgot how much I love this quilt. Even though Max ate part of the brown one (no great loss, it was super cheap sock yarn) the Yarny Cakes yarn – the gorgeous purple color way – was a freaking delight to work with! Here is Yarny Cakes BLOG, the FACEBOOK PAGE and of course the ETSY STORE.

♥♥ The Stitch Pattern That Became a Scarf ♥♥

Horizontal Weaving -or- Waves Scarf.

Horizontal Weaving -or- Waves Scarf.

Another wonderful stash buster! The scarf knit up in a few hours and I was pleasantly thrilled with how it turned out, front and back. Just wish I had taken better pictures, after I blocked it but before it got mailed to a friend. 😉

 

♥♥ The Ruffle Scarf for my Mimi ♥♥

Yup. Another Ruffle Scarf.

Yup. Another Ruffle Scarf.

I know I was going to swear these things off but when your grandmother (my Mimi) tells you she loves it and would you pretty please make one – you do. You know what’s funny? I really liked making this scarf….perspective is everything.

 * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

So for a weekend I put the outside world out of my mind and knitted. Knitted so much in fact I cannot believe my needles aren’t smoking! Now it is time to go back to the real world, but that doesn’t seem so daunting now. It has its perks – now I can catch up on all my favorite blogs! So I wonder friends and neighbors, do you have a favorite pattern?

I’ve missed you, I thank you. You are all overwhelmingly amazing!

 

A Fiasco at the Zoo & Oh Crap! FROGGING!


When I get stressed out I knit – I know, I know, big surprise there. I turn to knitting as a way to calm my mind, I just should have figured out that a project that requires my full attention was not the best way to go.

Frogging over 2,000 Stitches. *SIGH*

Frogging over 2,000 Stitches. *SIGH*

I was so intent on blocking the trip to the zoo (more on that later) from my mind that I was solely focused on finishing my lace shawl. The problem, as you can see above, is that when you aren’t paying attention you end up screwing up 10 whole rows and over 2,000 stitches. To think it had been going so well….

It is a pleasure to inform you now that after two hours, and a lot of cursing, the shawl is back on track. I really am hoping to get it finished either tomorrow or Tuesday – but boy oh boy I wanted to finish it today.

*************** ******** ******** *************** 

** The Zoo Fiasco **

What led to this particular frenzy of knitting was a trip to the Columbus Zoo on Friday. It should have been a fun little outing; Trevor, Mom, Gloria and I bundled into the car (despite the heat) and made our way towards furry, fuzzy goodness. It started very well – just look at Trevor and his new best friend.

Everything seemed to be going so well, until my Mom’s first asthma attack.

All things considered it really wasn’t that bad, since her diagnosis with COPD almost 10 years ago we’ve all gotten used to varying degrees of attacks. Two hits on the inhaler, some water and cotton candy and we were on the move again.

We saw polar bears….

Some Blue Mallards….

and baby elephants…..

Things seemed to be going pretty well – until they weren’t.

We were standing in line to get on a ride about dinosaurs of all things. I should say that no one but my mom wanted to do this, but she was like a little kid – so excited to go see the dinosaurs. So we humored her, put away our cameras and stood in line. I didn’t even know anything was wrong until she was grabbing my shirt and pushing through the throngs of people behind us.

By the time we were clear of the crowd her asthma wasn’t going to be easily controlled. Two more hits on the inhaler didn’t seem to damp it down, neither was hot water. I left her in Trevor and Gloria’s care and ran to some poor kid selling ice cream to see if he could get me a medic cart. I scared the hell out of this kid, but my insistence – as well as my fear that my mom was going to drop dead at the zoo – made me determined to get what was needed.

He radioed the cart and I returned to where my family was perched on a bench. I should have been freaking out when I saw here EpiPen but oddly enough I am always calm in stressful situations. It’s usually only after that my Panic Monster and I get reacquainted. She was holding it in her fist, shaking from tears and adrenaline released from four monster hits on her inhaler in less than two hours. All she could keep saying was “I want to go home”.

By the time the cart there all I wanted to do was go home too, unfortunately the cart held 3 and us being 4 I had to run behind the cart. This isn’t usually a big deal but my shoes were not fit for running and after about 35 minutes of this (the cart was kind enough to take us to the care) my shoes were full of blood.

My mom is fine – physically she is fine, mentally is another story. It breaks her a little every time her asthma takes something else away from here, and it has been doing that pretty steadily for the past 10 years. So, to work out the frustration of knowing my mom is mortal I temporarily ruined my lace shawl.

Silver linings right? The trip was great (except for the asthma). The shawl is going great (except for the marathon session of frogging). My mom is better (for now) and life keeps going.

Ahh, it feel ridiculously good to get that off my chest. As a reward friends and neighbors, how about a few more photos? You’ve earned it! 🙂

New Catching Fire Trailer – Better Images of the Shawl!


With all the wonderful designers out there looking into making this shawl – with no still photos – here is a new trailer with a much better view of my knitting lust!