"Learning to knit was a snap. It was learning how to stop that nearly destroyed me."
Erma Bombeck

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Deja Vu, my shop on Etsy

DH and I spent two hours filling out camp forms for Katy this morning---no wonder I procrastinate! I should photocopy them, and then just change the dates next year. We rewarded ourselves with lunch at LOLA'S, umm good.

I then spent the afternoon setting up my shop on Etsy. It's time to share the bounty, find some new homes for my treasures. I have just one listing...don't laugh, well okay go ahead...it was pretty simple, there is a learning curve, but it was fun. My daughter Anne thought I should sell on ebay, but I like the look of Etsy and their target market is perfect for what I'm offering. Check out my shop by clicking on the Etsy button on the right.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

It's a Party and We're Invited !

Bring your project and join us as we knit with hundreds of other knitters around the world on the same day! All ages & levels of experience are welcome.

Saturday, June 12, 2010
Books-A-Million, 1-5pm
401 N Hwy 190, Covington, LA
Hosted by Robin Bronston & Jennifer West
R.S.V.P. (985) 966-3713

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Take a knitting break.

Laundry and more laundry---this the time of year that I wash blankets and bedspreads; it is hot enough to dry them outside, and doing so may keep my 33 year old Maytag dryer going a while longer. There are sooo many things I'd rather spend money on than appliances. Wrangling heavy, wet bedding is hot, sweaty work though, necessitating regular knitting breaks. Although I've had a couple of doubts regarding the SOL shawl, I put my mind at rest by searching for Noro shawls on Ravelry---I saw many beautiful ones. That site is a wonderful resource, chances are good that someone (often many someones) has made the project you are contemplating, and perhaps has posted helpful suggestions.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Summer of Love

Channeling my inner hippie----I'm lovin' knitting my mostly garter stitch Noro shawl, very relaxing, very casual, very James Taylor :-)

Friday, April 30, 2010

Express your personal style: Necklines

I enjoy analyzing knitting patterns, and a collar or a pretty neckline is my favorite designer feature. The Buttercream Jacket is from the newest issue of Interweave Knits; Deborah Newton has expertly combined three textures in a shawl collar which frames the face and neck beautifully. In the photograph below the Essential Cardigan (from the same issue) is a classic design which would flatter any figure; the neckline and asymmetric closure are couture touches, yet this is the kind of practical design once offered by Chanel as a contrast to the exaggerated femininity of Dior. I'm thrilled to see some alternatives to the current "baby doll" styles that have been popular for a while.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

I've fallen and I can't get up - the Venita Shawl.

As I've said before, I may not be the Yarn Harlot, but I am a yarn harlot. Who else shops for yarn when my stash contains yarns of countless colors in all weights and every fiber? But Elann had Noro sock yarn at a 40% discount (sold out in minutes), and I found myself sitting in front of the library computer at 11 o'clock sharp this morning. My heart sank when I realized that I didn't have my credit card with me, but miraculously I realized I had memorized it! My first choice, Jade Garden, was not yet sold out....I plan to knit a lacey shawl from the Venita pattern ( a smaller version--shoulder shawl), a free pattern from Lorna Pearman. http://peargirlknits.blogspot.com/ This simple pattern has shoulder shaping for a better drape. It would be a great stash-buster too.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Lemonade Baby Blanket

If you are a fan of the Blossom Street novels, Debbie Macomber has a new book in that series coming out this month. I signed up for her mailing list and I got this free pattern for this quick and easy baby blanket. Designed to be knit with large needles, you'll be finished in time for the shower. Lion Brand has just introduced a new yarn called Baby's First (a chunky version of Cotton-Ease) which would work beautifully with this pattern. LEMONADE BABY BLANKET
(approx. 36" x 45")
855 yards bulky weight yarn
29" circular needles, sizes 10 1/2 and 11 (or sizes to get gauge)
Gauge: In pattern with larger needle 13sts and 19 rows = 4"

With smaller needle cast on 118 sts.
Rows 1-5: Knit across.
Change to larger size needle.
Row 6 (rs): K4, *yo, ssk, k4; repeat from* across
Row 7: K4, purl across to last 4 sts, k4.
Row 8: K4, *k2tog, yo, k4; repeat across.
Row 9: Repeat row 7.
Repeat rows 6-9 until blanket measures approximately 44", end by working a right side row.
Change to the smaller size needle.
Knit 5 rows.
Bind off all sts.

Spring Knitting

Just as I am compelled to work in my garden in the spring, I also feel I must start a project (or two) to celebrate the season of renewal, something light and airy. I shopped my stash for yarn, selected Provence in creme and downloaded the pattern for the Sorelle Lace-Edged Pullover, a Knititude pattern. I love the Knititude patterns, they are beautiful, well written and come in a wide range of sizes. I also plan to knit this shoulder shawl, Cascata, from the latest issue of the Twist Collective. The lace pattern is one of easiest I've ever seen, and isn't it pretty?

Saturday, April 24, 2010

"Lo, how a Rose e’er blooming ...."

This is 'Constance Spry', I purchased it many years ago from the Antique Rose Emporium. A vigorous climber, the flowers of ‘Constance Spry’ are perfectly gorgeous. Large, cupped, and cabbagey, the double flowers are perfectly pink and have a potent and unique scent of myrrh. The vigorous canes can be pruned to form a large shrub. This rose has survived some extreme neglect in my back yard.

The exquisite 'Ballerina' rose.

I planted a pair of these on either side of our gate after we got our picket fence two years ago. Ballerina’ produces clouds of small, single, pink roses with white eyes on a compact arching bush with thick foliage. When the leaves begin to thin in the late fall, the entire bush is lit up with tiny orange-red hips like bright Christmas lights.

There is no vaccine for Farmville Mania.

There was a time in my life when the time I spent on the computer was strictly utilitarian. I had recently gone back to school to get an education degree, and my family wanted an Apple PC for Christmas. I remember saying something like, "Okay, but I hope y'all use it, because I'll be busy with school, " etc. We were the second family, of all our aquaintances, to have a home computer (not counting my engineer brother who built his own!) Even though I had a new typewriter (w/ word processor!), that big Apple dinosaur was a workhorse---term papers and essays made easy, footnotes - no problem, abstracts combining class notes and textbook notes - simple. I copied a knitting gauge conversion program from Knitter's Magazine, and soon after that I wrote a comsumer survey program for a class project. However we resisted internet acess for a year or two, but when we relented I fell into the net that is the worldwide web. It has been wonderful to able to have access all kinds of information about my hobbies and special interests, but I never really experienced to obsessessive nature of computer games until I played Farmville! Which is partly why I haven't blogged for almost two months; the other reason being the fabulous April weather we've had this year.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Luck o' the Irish

Here is a chart for a mosaic shamrock to knit...Happy Saint Patrick's Day! Just click on the image to enlarge and print. (Rotate the chart counter clockwise so that the stem is on the right.)

Monday, February 22, 2010

Twelve Months of Christmas Knitting

Have you started making your knitted holidays gifts. This ornament is very pretty, and it's an easy introduction to knitting with beads. The design is from the BagLady Beads website, and all supplies can be ordered from there. Instructions for Bead Knitted Christmas Ball Ornament
I plan to try to adapt the pattern to knit an Easter Egg!

Monday, February 1, 2010

A day or three late

First sign of spring---my jonquils are blooming!

A quote from the most recent Yarn Harlot Blog, "# 1 reason for knitted crap.....Failure to read instructions!" It probably wouldn't have made any difference if I had read this a few days ago, my head and chest were clogged up with stuff, but my body equates resting with knitting, and I was dying to get started on the Undulating Waves Scarf. The written instructions were short, the chart simple......autopilot knitting.....wrong. The instructions are short, but every word is vital, and I could have saved myself some ripping and re-ripping if I had read the pattern not just once but two or three times. However I got on the right track Saturday night after everyone else had gone to bed, the scarf is proceeding nicely now, thank you. I am very appreciative of the yarn which did not show any wear and tear from all the ripping. My students will benefit from my experience (mistakes). I wish I could show you a photo of my progress, but Hugh needed the camera today. However I love the interplay of this yarn with this pattern, and I hope to share a picture with you tomorrow.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Knit Therapy

I'm a bit under the weather---at least it's a gray and rainy day. I've prescribed TLC, knit therapy, hot soup, and Netflix for myself.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

The Beads Go On

This Schaefer yarn is gorgeous, 100% cotton, the colors are vibrant---intense and supersaturated, and the glossy mercerized finish stood up beautifully to the process of sliding the beads onto the strand, which can cause severe wear on some yarns. I haven't knitted with it yet, but the yarn doesn't look as if splitting will be a problem. The yarn is smooth and crisp to the touch, but I'm expecting some softening with wear and time. I can't wait to start knitting late this afternoon, and perhaps I can post my progress tomorrow. Here are three more beautiful colors from Ewe Need Yarn.
The size 6 Matte Charcoal Seed Beads I chose to go with the yarn are pictured above. Seed beads are tiny pieces of glass cane that have been heated until they are smooth. Available in hundreds of colors and many finishes, they are sized by number, the higher the number, the smaller the bead. Japanese seed beads are generally recognized as being the best. Fusion Beads ,located in Seattle, offered free standard shipping (no minimum order); and my beads arrived in just a week. Included in the package was a free gift for a new customer :-)

Monday, January 25, 2010

It was a nail biter, but they won, and their fans are thrilled that the Saints are Super Bowl bound. You can show your support by knitting this Black & Gold Fleur d'Lis using mosaic knitting, a technique in which one one color is carried per row and contrasting colors are slipped. Reply to the blog for more info.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Geaux Saints!

Bless You Boys! Whatever happens today, it has been a great season, and a lot of fun. Finish strong. At our house we'll be watching, and my knitting will keep stress in check and my hands out of the snacks.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Knitting With Beads

Many of the generous knitting designers that sell their patterns on Ravelry have pledged a percentage of their sales to Haitian relief. Ravelry has grouped these patterns here. The pattern for the Undulating Waves Scarf is one of those listed; this beautiful scarf uses Schaefer Susan handpainted cotton and #6 beads. I will host a mini class on Knitting With Beads if any of you want to join me in making this scarf. I ordered my yarn from Ewe Need Yarn and my #6 Miyuki beads from Fusion Beads (I ordered 6 pkgs). Please purchase the Susan Undulating Waves Scarf from Ravelry (the wool Heather Undulating Waves Scarf knits to a different gauge). The class fee will be $10.00 and the entire amount will be donated to Episcopal Relief for Haiti. Let me know if you are interested. The pattern for the French Press Slippers is also available at the same link. If the link doesn't work for you, just go to Ravelry. ">

Monday, January 11, 2010

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!

Don't you like this photo of a Louisiana winter scene.? I've enjoyed being able to see the birds more easily now that so many of the trees have shed their leaves.

I've been having computer problems, three defective modems later I'm finally back on line, ready to get back to blogging.

The twelve days of Christmas are my favorite part of the season, beginning with an afternoon church service, followed by all the wonderful happy chaos of family, food, and laughter and ending with Katy's birthday celebration. She is twelve, and still a joy. Over the past few years, it has been my custom to spend December 26th in my red robe and slippers, sipping coffee or tea, knitting, reading, napping.... All this cold weather is conducive to indoor activities, and I have been in cocoon mode, content to let Hugh run the errands (he seems to suffer from cabin fever much more frequently than I).

I thought this Soft Rib Rib Sweater would be perfect to wear while curled up with a good book or knitting; it could also double as a bed jacket! A quick knit on large needles, it is a free pattern from the Lion Brand web site.