Sunday, December 28, 2008

I've Really Got to Make a Choice

Okay, I know I said I was switching back to Blogger from Wordpress....I did a post about these on my wordpress here to read. Eventually, I will sort all this out.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Another Birthday

Friday, December 05, 2008

A Return to the Old

I think I am switching back to Blogger! But until I completely make the switch...go to to see what I am up to. Happy Knitting!

Sunday, May 25, 2008

A New Home

I have moved my blog to a new home. You can find me here. A new sittinandknittin. See you there!!!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Let's Go Shopping

Elisa's Nest Tote is finished!

This free pattern from Ravelry is a fun fast knit.
I finished making the handles this morning and boy are my fingers sore from all that i-cording. I did it on US#3 DPs to make it dense so it wouldn't stretch too much when it is fully loaded with farmer's market goodies or anything for that matter. I am very pleased with the finished results even though I did make a few boo-boo's along the way. I will probably be the only one that will notice so I am not too upset with my efforts. And anyway its a veggie tote which will probably end up getting stained from cherries or some other juicy fruit!

Relaxed it is about 10" x 12". The i-cord handles are 18" long stretched making it very comfortable to sling over the shoulder.

You can see how it really stretches when it is loaded up.

I am planning on making more of these to use up all that Sonata yarn from Elann that I purchased months ago. Sonata is just too stiff for clothing but for totes it works so well.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Another Try

Does everyone who uses blogger have so many problems with it? I was working along on the last post and blogger started acting really strange. It wouldn't let me use the space bar as I was typing and it wouldn't let me post another photo....very irritating.

This is the other project I am working on - a shopping tote! I am making this for a friend as a thank-you gift. This is a quick knit. I am using up some cotton I bought at Elann that I planned to use for summer tops. I really don't like the feel of Sonata against my skin but it is great for this application. Just a few more inches then I can add the i-cord handles. I knit this in the round and did a 3-needle bind off on the bottom so it would be very sturdy to hold all those farmer's market goodies.

The finished unstretched size will be 8" x 12" and when loaded it will probably be twice that size.

(I see my toes through the glass table top!)

Hotter then HELL

This heat wave is killing a/c in this hot house. I live in Marin Co, just north of San Francisco and we are in the midst of a killer heat wave. Yesterday it was 98 outside and 88 in the house. I work out of my home office so I don't have the opportunity to hang out in an air conditioned work environment...not a very productive day and today is just a carbon copy!

A couple of things I am currently working on - Mr. Greenjeans cardigan from I call mine Ms. Periwinkle Jeans. The photo does not accurately represent the color at all. It really isn't that gray looking. This is a fun knit, top down all in the round - no seaming!!!! I just have the sleeves to finish up and it is wearable, and by the time they are finished I hope this heat wave is too. I decided not to do the button that the pattern called for so I could leave it open or add one of my favorite pins if I wanted it closed. The cool thing about knitting in top down you can try it on as you go - no unwanted surprises in the end.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008


you could never tell by the expression on my face, but yes, I do love this cardi and the way it turned out. My husband took lots more pictures and this one is the best (most flattering). I wore the sweater yesterday and thought it would be perfect timing for a photo shoot...wrong. He had five minutes to produce professional (ha-ha) looking photos before preparing for his class, the wind was blowing and the sun was just too hot. Not good makings for a relaxed photo shoot. So this will have to do.

This is the Flutter Sleeve Cardigan from the Spring issue of Interweave Knits - 2008. I used the suggested yarn and made only a few modifications. 1. Three buttons instead of two. 2. Horizontal button holes instead of vertical. 3. Tacked the roll-up cuff to the sleeve. I never did block this and I probably won't. I don't think it really needs it because of the nature of the yarn. So what you have is a nice summer sweater!

A few more shots.

Posted by Picasa

Monday, May 05, 2008


This past weekend I accomplished a lot. I finished my Camo Tuscany Wrap and my Strawberry Flutter Sleeve Cardi. Flutter sleeve will be posted later so Camo will have center stage.

The yarn is Glacier Bay Sock Yarn - 3 ply merino, hand dyed. When I purchased the yarn at Marin Fiber Arts a couple of weeks ago, I immediately fell in love with the dye. I was concerned that the final knit up would be too stiff and scratchy for a wrap since it was sock yarn and the variegated dye would be too overwhelming for a lace shawl. When I was finished knitting it and after a 10 minute soak in the sink, the fiber bloomed deliciously soft and supple . When I took it off the needles it was so "springy" and "tiny" but after blocking it grew almost twice its size.

There are a lot of different opinions circulating out there in the knitting world about what type of yarn should be used to knit lace shawls or lace in general. In particular some think that variegated yarn will complete distract from the lovely intricate lace details...well, I will have to say I don't agree with that completely. Yes, this shawl would have been beautiful in a plain yarn and the lace detail would taken center stage, but with Camo, I think the yarn works extremely well in harmony with the pattern. I will have to add that Tuscany is a very simple pattern repeat and its simplicity lends a balance to the richness of the yarn. Some lace shawls have way too much pattern going on with them that a plain yarn would only be the way to go to show off all that hard work. In this case I think it works well and I am so pleased with the way it turned out.

This detail really shows the beauty of the dye with the light parts juxtaposed to the dark creating an almost 3 dimensional quality.

I can't wait to wrap myself up in this.
Off the needle size 25" x 55"
Blocked size 27" x 80"

Monday, April 21, 2008

Trying to Move On

Today is one week since Theo passed on...I have been slogging my way through life this past week trying to get on with it...I still can't bring myself to pick up the cookie crumbs he left behind on the floor or vacuum the carpet because the little paw print indents will be gone forever.
He was sent down to Monterey to be cremated and I guess he will be back sometime this week in a little urn. It will be hard to go into the vets to pick him up when he arrives.

A big Thank You to all of you for your warm thoughts. It is so hard to lose your best friend. Knitting helps a lot. Seems that is all I can productively do these days.

I am still working on the Flutter Sleeve Cardi, actually almost finished with it. I have the last sleeve cuff and sewing the side seam up and attaching the buttons left to do. I got a little side tracked on Sunday when I went to Marin Fiber Arts grand reopening...I looked at all the lovely new yarns and played on the spinning wheel (they were having spinning demos) I know how to spin, not particularly my most favorite fibery aspect of all things fiber - hurts my back too much, anyway it was fun to spin on a different wheel than mine. I got into a little trouble, I purchased 4 skeins of this lovely 3 ply merino - (actually sock) yarn but I am making shawls with it.
I started Amy R. Singer's Tuscany shawl from No Sheep for You...what a fun, and fast pattern. I started this yesterday and I can't seem to put it down.

Posted by PicasaI have my own little Tuscany right here on my porch!!! Really no replacement for Italy but a close second!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

In Loving Memory of Theo

November 1, 1992 - April 14, 2008

Posted by Picasa

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Zoom Zoom

Now that I am finished with the Printed Silk Cardi I am starting another knit out of the Interweave Spring magazine...the Flutter Sleeve Cardigan. I ordered the yarn from Webs and as usual they deliver fast! I received it this past Monday afternoon in the mail and cast on just an hour before dinner. I am 2/3 finished with the is a lot of stockinette but there is something addictive about the pattern with just enough stitch change in between to keep from getting boring. Here it is Thursday morning, at this rate I will have this finished in about a week, if all goes well with my time. The pattern is actually extremely easy, no complicated stitches to memorize or get tricked up on. So far the only change I plan on making is adding 3 buttons to the front instead of the 2 the pattern calls for, and changing the direction of the button holes from vertical to horizontal.
The yarn is wonderful to knit with too.
Classic Elite Silk
The color way is called tomato but it looks more like strawberry.

Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

I Do Wear What I Knit

It fits!!! (Since no one was around I used the self-timer...turned out okay).
Here I am sitting in my office, wearing my new blue cardi!
Just love those hand carved buttons.

Posted by Picasa

Ever Feel Like Alice?

Always running...about to slide down the tube....will I end up in Wonderland? Lately that is the way it feels to me.

Monday, April 07, 2008


My beautiful blue cardi is finished!!! I don't have snazzy photos of me modeling the sweater(maybe later), but you can get the turned out very nice and I am very pleased. The organic nature of the yarn is growing on me more and more.
It fits me better than I anticipated and the finishing is so professional!
There are lots of people knitting this pattern on Ravelry and commenting on the bottom edge rolling too much (and coming up with all kinds of strange alternatives to the original pattern) - that's why knitted pieces are blocked. Yes, my bottom edge rolled and look at it now after blocking...smooth and flat. After a project is knitted there is more to do than just sewing it up and moving on to the next thing. So many projects I see on Ravelry don't take the finishing step seriously and they end up looking home made instead of hand made.
I steam blocked instead of wet blocked since there is a combination of wool and silk. I will most likely be dry cleaning this one when cleaning time comes around even though when I did do a test for color fastness and shrinkage, and the dye didn't run and it didn't shrink.
I am stalled on Yosemite - just so much of the same boring pattern. My intention was to have it finished in a couple of weeks so I could give it to my sister for her birthday!!! I have knit half of it and it just sits there staring at me with a punitive glare (if a sweater could actually do that) screaming at me to pick it up. I snubbed my nose at it and raided my stash and started another sweater in spite! I went to my knitting library and flipped through a few books and found the perfect alternative to Yosemite, at least for now. I won't say what it is just now but will reveal it after I have made more progress on it.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Stress Kills

Stress and fatigue can be very dangerous. They always say...stress kills. I have now experienced the power of stress and what a toll it has played on the body. This past week I developed mastitis. No, I don't breastfeed (to old for that) and contrary to what most people think about this illness, anyone can get it. So I am taking high powered antibiotics, resting a lot and I am plugging away on the knitting when I feel some energy.

I am half finished with the right front and then the last sleeve to do. I am getting anxious to finish this cardi so I can wear it. I am still enjoying the pattern but I have found myself drifting to other projects. I just can't sit still when there is so much to knit out there. I see something on Ravelry, or in a magazine and I get this incredible urge to start! If I could focus and just stay with it I think I would have finished this up by now...but that's the way it goes.

I still love this yarn and have gotten used to the striated effect which seems most noticeable on the stockinette part. There is a big pool on the back, which is unfortunate, but just a characteristic of the yarn.

Love these buttons. I picked them up at Stitches West for another project in mind at the time, but these work perfectly for this sweater. Just the right size...just the right color...just right!

I finally gave into temptation and ordered the KnitPicks Options needles. They sure are slow to send things, very annoying especially when you want it now! They give you the 5 to 14 day shipping window (waiting time) took all of those 14 days to get them and not including the 3 days before when I actually placed the order. Webs on the other hand is fast, fast, fast! I ordered some yarn and it arrived in 3 days, including the day I placed the order. Now that is customer satisfaction.

After I received the needles I had to take them for a test drive, and since I have developed a cable obsession lately I started this sweater. The needles are really nice to knit with. They have a nice taper and point to them. I really don't like blunt tips, makes too much work.

Posted by PicasaThis is the start of the sleeve. The pattern has tons of texture and richness. Now enough of this rambling and back to the knitting.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

First Day of Spring

Pretty day for the first day of Spring!

Blossoms from my garden.

Cherry Blossoms....

Pink Peach Blossoms...

More Pink Peach Blossoms,

and what's on my traveling needles, aka mindless knitting. I really like knitting with this yarn and I think any kind of stitch pattern would become lost in the texture so just plain stockinette works fine. Not exactly spring knitting, but socks of some sort are always on the needles at any time of the year.

I am making good progress on the Printed Silk Cardigan. The back is finished, one sleeve finished and half of the left front. I would like to have that sweater finished in a couple of weeks so I can move on to the next queued sweater. I ordered a bunch of cotton/tencel yarn yesterday from WEBS for the Yosemite top that I am making for my sister's birthday. I have one month to get that started and finished. I plan to modify the pattern slightly and not do the sleeves. I think this top will look great on Lisa. She is thin and has big boobs and with the negative ease (the pattern says 7 inches...that's a lot) it will be perfect for her.

Posted by Picasa

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Always Learning More

This past week has been very trying, but I have managed to keep up with my knitting, if anything for my sanity. Very old dog Theo (he's heading towards 16 years) had another stroke. Absolutely freaked me out as he was going through this episode. It was different from the one he had over a year ago. Needless to say, restless and sleepless nights the past few days.
I have immersed myself with work on The Printed Silk Cardigan. The pattern has a very addictive nature to it. First, written well and easy to follow without any sneaky upsets along the way. Second, new techniques that are going to stay in my knitting repertoire for future projects.
Take this sleeve for instance, the cast on edge is worked
in a tubular cast on. I have never, ever seen that before. Some of you may have, but not me. It makes a perfect edge for the ribbed sleeve.

Another new way to knit the shoulder edge, instead of the usual BO that creates that funny bumpy uneven edge (albeit hidden in the seam when you go to sew it up) this technique uses short rows to create a gradual and smooth edge. Love it!

Both these techniques are explained in the latest issue of Interweave Knits - Spring 2008.
I have finished the back section. When it was time to add a new ball of yarn - look what happened. It looks like I used different dye lots. It is only in this section at the center back a couple of inches from the BO...

The yarn has a subtle dye variegation to it and this is how the two of them lined up. I couldn't tell this was happening until I had about half an inch knit. I have decided to keep it because who knows what it would look like if I started farther into the ball of yarn! I usually won't settle for this kind of discrepancy, but I am this time.

Posted by Picasa

Saturday, March 08, 2008

Must Be The Yarn

Green Soleil Tank...
Finished March 7th, 2008
I am quite pleased with how this tank knitted up and finished up. I used Cascade Pima/Tencel Cotton. The feel of this yarn is super soft, so that makes it a pleasure to feel next to the skin. It washed up wonderfully too and I even put it in the dryer to speed up the drying process. Because it has cotton in it when it was wet it was heavy and hard to block without it becoming extremely distorted. I took a chance and put it in the dryer on low for about 15 minutes until it was damp dry. Since that was a success I will wear this top and know when it is time to wash it I have nothing to fear that it won't reshape well.

As with the orange tank, the one with the unfortunate yarn choice, I made the same modifications to the pattern, mainly with the arm hole size and strap width size. I also edged both armholes and neck with 2 rows of garter stitch instead of crochet. Since I am left handed that hook is so awkward for me to use. I don't like armholes that are so tight that my antiperspirant rubs off on the fabric and you get this unsightly white dust on it...

One other thing I would change with this pattern is the plunging neckline. It just barely conceals my bra. The orange top didn't seem so low so I didn't even consider modifying that part on the green top. My husband on the other hand thinks it it wonderful!

And on a sad note, I found Carlos dead yesterday. He is still out on the driveway. I am surprised that he has not been picked off by a bird or some other roaming critter in the garden.

Posted by Picasa

Thursday, March 06, 2008


This magical creature lives in my yard. This is Carlos. We have named him after Carlos Castaneda. He is a Western Bluetail Skink!

My husband first spotted Carlos months ago but only a brief sight of the blue tail. I thought he was on something and dismissed this sighting to pure hallucination or just exhaustion. I was working in the garden last fall and I too spotted the elusive blue tail. So that confirmed that...he was real.

The other morning, just a few days ago, my husband saw him out on the driveway...quickly he snapped this photo with his iPhone. A bit blurry, but you can clearly see that fluorescent blue tail. I think he was trying to look like a twig to hide...Carlos is only about 4" long from nose to tip of tail.

And, on a knitterly note, I do have some things to show next post later today. Just finishing up the Soleil Tank Redux and progress on the silk cardigan.................................................

Posted by Picasa