Posted in knitting

Finished Object – Water Shawl

Today is the last day of March. I told myself that I would have this KAL done by today. Despite the difficulties of working on the road, the obstacle of my computer WIFI failure and the minefield of working on Someone Else’s Computer, I am ready. Here you see the blocked shawl hung up against a striped curtain.

My daughter agreed to model for me.

The temperatures here in Wisconsin dipped down into the upper 20th last night. At the time of the photo session, it was still only about 45 F. She professed that the shawl is quite warm.

I’m pretty happy with it. I did run out of the dark yarn and had to improvise a bit at lower edge, just above the lacey bind off. I have plenty of pink left. So I can’t call this a stash buster. But it is a unique and graceful design. I recommend this pattern for intermediate knitters.

You can find this pattern on Ravelry.

Ravelry: Water pattern by Sylvia McFadden

Posted in knitting

Cast on Monday – Knit Along

It’s time for another cast on. This time I am working a group knit along project organized for the Blogville Knitters group on Ravelry. Alissa has chosen this shawl by Sylvia McFadden.

Ravelry: Water pattern by Sylvia McFadden

While the designer was going for a watery look, with insets of lovely lace, I have chosen two yarns that give more of a chocolate cake with pink icing sort of feel.

For my main color, I have Wisco sock yarn in colorway Dark Plum by Ewetopia. The contrast color is an alpaca rayon blend by Berroco called Folio in colorway Cardinal.

Here you see the first swirling lace inset. Doesn’t it remind you of waves? There will be six sections like this in between the garter ridges. So far I find that the stitches required to make these waves are a little tricky, and need to be worked at a much slower pace.

The plan is to finish by the end of June March? It’s doable.

Posted in knitting

F.O. Friday – Knitting

Here you see the pair of socks I knitted for my S-I-L. This was to be a Christmas gift, but it appears that I missed the deadline by about four weeks. I have no regrets – I did what I had to do.

On my feet – a pathetic stand-in model for the giftee.

You can almost make out the 3 by 1 rib I used on the leg and instep sections. This is currently my favorite stitch for socks. I find it more soothing to work than a 2 by 2 rib. Another feature of this sock is that I doubled up the yarn at heel and toe. I am hoping the extra thickness will increase the lifespan of the socks.

Pale blue yarn is a blend of alpaca, wool and acrylic. Dark blue is Cascade Heritage, a superwash merino, reinforced with nylon, and one of my favorite sock yarns.

TGIF, and TGI ready to mail off to the giftee!

Posted in knitting, weaving

December Holiday in Review

First of all, I want to say that the Christmas To-Do list posted on the wall was a big hit with family members who visited us this year.

Of the twenty items on the list, all but four were completed – with great enthusiasm, for the most part. We made a few changes: no one was interested in making wreaths, but the fly fishermen among us wanted to tie some flies. So there was that substitution. And since the cars took up the whole driveway, we played sports in the backyard. Many times. The weather was remarkably warm and sunny, hence No Fire in the Fireplace.

I received two fibery gifts. The first was a pair of sock yarns, originating in Wisconsin.

I have worked with Ewetopia sock yarn once before and found it very pleasant – it is round, tightly twisted and produces a sturdy fabric. The swatch of the dark plum gave a deep tonal, slightly shaded fabric. The yellow green color, named Caterpillar, gave a stripey fabric characterized by short repeats.

My second gift was a handful of woven linen swatches, made decades ago by my son in law’s grandmother.

After studying them for a while, I was able to work out which direction were warps and which were wefts. Some of these brocades must have been devilishly difficult to construct. I want to preserve them, but I also want to use them in some way. At the moment, I am considering working the swatches into a stretched canvas piece.

It was a busy and tiring week at chez LauraKate. While I intend to write about my body of work made in 2020, that discourse must wait for tomorrow. Today will be dedicated to tidying the craft room, folding the laundry and roasting a chicken.

Posted in knitting

Wednesday WIP

Here before you is the glove I cast on a little over a week ago. I had expected to make faster progress. It was my travel project for a recent car trip to Ohio. My biggest roadblock was light. When I had time to knit, I found myself in locations with poor lighting. I had underestimated how the lack of contrast in value between the solid yarn and the variegated yarn would slow me down. So that’s my big excuse.

Another problem arose because I wasn’t working from a pattern or chart. This proved troublesome on the thumb gussett increases. Fortunately, here the lack of value contrast turned out to be my friend. Inconsistencies in the stitchwork are not obvious to the casual viewer.

I love the texture created by working purl bumps on alternate rows.

Now that the palm section is done, I will drop the blue yarn and complete the fingers using the variegated. That means one less element to deal with. Perhaps my knitting will go more swiftly.

Posted in knitting

Cast on Monday

It’s a particularly cold and dark Monday morning. There is a light rain falling. I guess the rain is just enough to make roads slick. In the distance I hear the sirens of emergency vehicles racing to the scene of an accident.

No matter. There is coffee brewing and wool to keep me warm and occupied for the day. This yarn is a Berroco sock yarn called, appropriately, Berroco Sox, color number 14100. I am casting on this pair to gift to someone who loves me. The stitch pattern is the same 3 by 1 rib that I used for my husband’s cashmere socks. Which, by the way, he finally wore for the first time yesterday.

I hope your Monday sees you warm and content, making something you enjoy.

Posted in knitting

It’s Friday, it’s a Finished Object

It’s the season for sock making, and here is my entry. Just your basic sock, nothing fancy.

The only thing worth commenting is this: I have been knitting for twelve years, and this pair is the first I have knit with a self-striping yarn. This particular yarn is KnitPicks Stroll. The colorway – Test Pattern – was on sale earlier in the year. I’m pleased that I was able to get the wide stripes to line up the same way on each sock.

Posted in knitting

Finished Object Friday

I am remiss in not sharing photographs of the completed cashmere socks that I knit for hubby. They have been off the needles for about a week. I was hoping to take a photo of them on his feet, but alas, he hasn’t worn them yet.

They are slightly loose on my feet, but look okay in the photograph.

The cuff is a 3 by 1 rib which is carried on over the foot. I used Elizabeth Zimmerman’s method for heel flap and gusset.

The yarn is from Knit Picks. I enjoyed knitting it so much that I plan to buy more in other colors. Just think how nice a cashmere-blend cowl or scarf will feel around your neck on a cold, blustery day.

Posted in knitting, painting

Vacation in the Rear View Mirror

Another view of travel knitting, this time on the way home. While on vacation I was too busy to finish this sock. However I do have a few things fibery and artsy to share.

When visiting one of my favorite yarn/book stores, I snagged this pretty ball of Berroco Sox yarn and 1000 yards of Plymonth Encore in a heathery mahogany color.

My grandson agreed to accept a pair of socks from me, and approved of this yarn. I plan to use the Plymouth yarn to knit myself a loose cardigan for lounging around the house on cool winter nights.

I got the sketch book out during the vacation just once. Here is a view of Shell Lake.

It was so fun introducing my 2-year-old granddaughter to water color paint. First I made an assortment of paint puddles, taped down a piece of drawing paper and handed her a cotton swab. Following my example, she dabbled with lines and dots.

She also grabbed a small sponge, stroked it over the red paint then applied it to the paper. When she ran out of space on the paper, she wiped the sponge vigorously over her belly.

FYI: Red watercolor paint on a baby’s body looks very much like a bruise. Gramps had a moment of concern upon viewing her body art, which he quickly overcame after I wiped her clean.

Today marks the last day of WorldWatercolorMonth. Despite being gone for twelve days this month, I was able to complete fifteen of the 31 challenges. Here is my final one. The prompt is Pose. I chose this little cedar waxwing, who was posing for the camera by cocking his head to one side.

It’s nice to be back in my studio. I look forward to digging in to my stash of UFOs and dreaming up some interesting new projects.

Posted in knitting

Finished Object Friday

Fresh socks off my needles and blocked

This is a stash-buster project, made from Cascade Heritage sock yarn.

The pattern is called Firefly. It features a two by two right twist cable that is inserted in a staggered fashion. I love how it looks and how much stretch it provides to the sock cuff.

Wearing them feels like walking on air.

I highly recommend the pattern, in fact I recommend the book where the pattern appears. It is by Clara Parkes.

The Knitter’s Book of Socks: The Yarn Lover’s Ultimate Guide to Creating Socks That Fit Well, Feel Great, and Last a Lifetime

I borrowed it from the library, but it is available on Amazon.