Birthday Yarn

Now, please note, my birthday isn’t until October, but my aunt and uncle recently moved, and rather misplace my gift during their transition, my aunt chose to give it to me while she knew where it was.  She gave me some BEAUTIFUL birthday yarn.

The yarn is by Leading Men Fiber Arts, and I made the mistake of going on their website and absolutely DROOLED over their gorgeous yarn.  Absolutely beautiful, guys.  Well done.  Here’s a closer look at the two fingering weight skeins I now have in my possession. Get updates from these guys on Facebook.

Beautiful birthday yarn!

You can read the details on the tags, like the colorways and such.  They a soft and squishy, and yarn like this should be.  YUM.

The yarn came from Main Street Yarn in Rebersburg, Pennsylvania, USA, which is not only a yarn store, but a lovely book shop.  How nice!  Knit and read.  Like them on Facebook.  You know you want to.  They threw in some extra goodies with the yarn, too.  The notepad will be particularly useful.

Main Street Yarn goodies

Now, what to make with this beautiful yarn?!  I will have to pick the perfect project, and my aunt deliberately chose colors that coordinate.  Any ideas?  I’m open to suggestions.

I love my birthday yarn.  I really appreciate the thought that went into the gift.

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Bad Dog

It finally happened.  Sputnik, my almost nine month old puppy, got into my one knitting storage chest and got at a skein of Lopi Einband yarn that I needed to use on my Faroese shawl that I work from time to time.  Bad dog.

I can understand why Sputnik went after it:  it’s wool!  It smells like an animal.

Luckily, and surprisingly, he left the actual project alone.  I’m thankful for that.

It’s one of those crazy situations that you have laugh, really.  Still, I’m not amused.  I think the skein is salvageable.  I still have it and put it in a sealing freezer storage bag, and away from the dog.  I’ll have to take a look at it when he’s not looking.

The skein before Sputnik.
In memorium.

Dog v. Yarn and Something Cool

The battle of Dog v. Yarn is getting better.  Sputnik is still curious about what I’m doing with string, but has learned, with the back up with a spray bottle, that yarn is a not a toy.  I’ve also been sticking to synthetic fibers as not to entice his nose with natural ones.  That’s another battle for another time.

I got a few quick projects off, like this cool hat I crocheted (yes, crocheted).  I also managed to knit a scarf for the Wrap Up! Project, too.

Me in my newly crocheted hat.

I apologize for the glare of the fluorescent lights on the hat.  Ugh, office lighting.

Now, for the cool thing.  Familiar with the Craftys Awards?  I nominated myself in the craft blogger category, and they featured me on social mediaHow cool IS that?!

I hope that you had a fantastic New Year!

 

My First Sweater: A Look Back

See that person up there?  Yup, that’s me, modeling the first sweater that I ever knit.  I wore it yesterday, actually, on the recommendation of someone said that I should. So, here’s a look back at my first sweater.  It’s Pattern 13 in the Noro: Catwalk 2 book by Jenny Watson.

I am often afraid to wear my sweaters because I’m worried I’ll damage or ruin them.  On the other hand, I should wear them because I’m proud of the work I do!

I knit this sweater during a class at Kitnit Fine Yarns, which is now The Speckled Sheep, in Lancaster, PA, USA.  I didn’t want to tackle shaping and picking up stitches alone, so I enrolled in this class which, in the description, said it would be a good project for the first time sweater knitter.  I took the plunge.

I’m proud of my work!  It’s a little big for me, but I don’t care.  It’s warm, it has pockets, it’s mine.  Here are some of the statistics for the sweater.

  • Knit from 11 skeins of Noro Kuryeon wool yarn
  • It took me well over a month.
  • The pattern had the dreaded p2tog through the back loop decrease.  It was horrible.  I looked on the Internet for advice on how to accomplish this, and found that if you p2tog stitches together, pull the stitch of the left needle and turn it counterclockwise once, you get the same result.  Here’s a video of how to do this technique properly, without cheating.

Back in the Ludicraft days, I did a week by week saga of how the sweater progressed.  You can wander down memory lane in the list below.

So, that’s basically the story of my first sweater.  As a note, it’s also featured in the pattern page on Ravelry.

What was the first sweater you every knit?  I’d love to see your project.  If you haven’t knit your first sweater yet, don’t be discouraged!  Take the plunge.  Find a teacher or research stuff on the Internet.  Knitting your first sweater is a very rewarding experience.  It was for me!

 

WUL Stash UFO: One Row Lace Scarf

UFO-Unfinished Object for those not accustomed to knitting lingo.

I am using some of the yarn that I got from the WUL stash dive is being turned into Norwegian knitter turvid’s One Row Lace Scarf Pattern, which is free over on her blog, which hasn’t been updated in a long time.  Still, the pattern is available. Check it out here!

The yarn I’m using is definitely wool, and I love the bluish-purple-y heather color it’s got going on.  Quite pretty!

The nice thing about turvid’s lace pattern is that it pretty much can be done on with any yarn on any needles.  I like patterns like that!  I’m pretty sure the yarn I’m using now is worsted weight, while my needles are US 10 1/2 (trivia….my favorite needle size!).

The scarf seems to be coming along fine and pretty fast, due to the large needle size.  I just cast on on my 15 minute break this morning, and I knit a row or two over lunch.

I can’t wait to see what this scarf will look like when its blocked.  That lace pattern should really open up!

So, that’s the UFO I’m working on at work/portable places project.  Cheers, rock stars!

3 Stash Diving Lessons Learned

I need to face it; I have a large yarn stash.  I think all knitters do, really.

Lately, for inspiration, I’ve diving through my stash to get ideas.  It’s been a good exercise to find things that I had initially forgot about, really.  I tend to grab yarn from same bin right beside my spot on the couch.  Going through my yarn stash has forced me to take inventory of what I actually do have.

Here three things I’ve learned about my stash collecting habits from the past few days.

  1.  I have a lot of yellow yarn.  And I’m not even a fan of the color yellow.  I mean, I like it, but it’s not my first choice in color selection.  No matter how I obtained it, I don’t tend to use it often, so I have a lot of it.  Yellow everywhere!  I’m starting to use it now for chemo hats, as it a bright and cheery color and some people do like it.
  2. I have a lot of mystery weight yarn.  A lot of what I have doesn’t have labels on it.  That means I’m going to have to get my inch measuring tool out and figure it out.  Or, I can just knit a scarf on whatever the heck needles I want with it.  There.  Problem solved.
  3.  I have a lot of cool odds and ends of yarn.  I think this another concept other knitters can relate to when it comes to their stash.  We tend to keep pretty bits of a ball of yarn that we can’t bear not to use.  But, what will we use it for?  I have small balls of chunky wool yarn that I want to integrate into a project, but I’m still figuring out how.  I’ll think of something.

That’s what I’ve learned from diving though my stash of yarn.  It’s been a pretty interesting learning experience.  I’ve used up quite a bit of weird stuff already, and it been fun, actually.  Duh!  I need to keep doing this.

 

Stash Flash: Aslan Trends Royal Alpaca

I received this skein of Aslan Rends Royal Alpaca yarn through a Ravelry swap I participated in. I have been holding on to it for a quite a while, as it is one of the few luxury yarns I have right now.

I guess you could say I was saving it for a rainy day.  Well, I started using it yesterday, but it’s raining today.  Close enough.

This is gorgeous yarn!  Alpaca is by far my favorite fiber to work with.  And this blue is just yummy, and is one of my favorite colors.  Whoever was my swap partner at the time sure got my preferences right.

I started a lacy scarf with it.  I have quite a bit done of it, and there’s a lot of yarn left.  I guess I’m about half done.  I’ll show photos of the scarf once it’s done and blocked.  Oh, and as for the recipient of the scarf….it’s me.  My favorite fiber and one of my favorite colors?  Of course, I’m keeping it!

See the photos  below for dye lot and other info about the yarn.  I also have a stash page on Ravelry about this particular skein.