Knit Mitt Kit Swap

Img_1261 I’ve had an idea for a project bag for a while, and KMKS gave me the chance to try it out, so my pal will get the prototype.  I used jewel-toned fabrics that my older sister gave me several years ago as a part of a huge stack of fat quarters.  I love purple and green together; many of my quilts were made in this color combo. 

Img_1262 Here is a peek inside.  Like so many of us, my pal carries her small projects in ziplock baggies.  I wanted her to have a bag for small projects, which is why everything looks squished–she will not likely carry so much in it.  I purchased Eunny’s Anemoi pattern (I bought myself a copy, too!), light and dark green yarn, a chibi, two sets of dpns in the right sizes (I hope–the different sized mittens call for different sized needles), and a crochet hook.  I also added a stack of post-it notes to help keep track of the charts.  I used the big round handles so that the bag can easily hang off of a chair.  When I’m out at SnB, I like to keep my bag off of the ground, so I always like handles that accommodate that.

Later today or tomorrow I’ll post pictures of the beautiful yarn I recieved for the Interweave Spin to Knit Swap. I’ve taken a short break from spinning my shawl yarn to spin for my pal, and I’ll be sure to show you a picture once it’s plyed and set.

Thanks to everyone who commented, both on the blog and privately, about my last post. 

Oh, Webs!

How I love thee, Webs!  I hit their big sale on the way out of Northampton today and scored yarn for Eunny’s Anemoi mittens (brown and pink for me, light green and dark green for my KMKS pal), two skeins of Rowan Big Wool, and thirteen (yes, 13!) skeins of Noro Cash Iroha in lilac, which I’m slating for the Hourglass Sweater, as long as I can figure out how to modify that wide neckline.  Or, maybe this will work for the Simple Knitted Bodice

I’m planning a yarn fast for at least some part of 2007.  I think I’ll have plenty to keep me busy!

KMKS Questionnaire

What are your favorite colors? Black, grey, pink, green.

Are you a new mitt knitter? How long have you been knitting mittens? I’ve knit several pairs of mittens, including Kate Gilbert’s Gifted, as well as numerous wrist warmers and mitts (ok, when I write mitts, I mean fingerless gloves/mittens).

Do you prefer solid or multicolored yarn?  I’ve recently learned to knit with beads, which makes me like solid fibers more than I have in the past.  This might be wishy washy, but I think the pattern determines which type of yarn to use.

What fibers do you prefer in mitten yarn? Soft, not scratchy wool.  I bought my first Malabrigo for some holiday knitting of Fetching, and I lurv it. 

Where do you usually knit mittens? I usually knit everything either at home, on my chair, in the car, or at my knitting group.

How do you usually carry/store small projects?  I have a variety of bags where I stash projects.  My smallest bags (used for socks) are my Madison bag and my GoKnit pouch.

What are your favorite mitten patterns? I like Gifted, and I also like Mrs. Beeton’s wrist warmers.

What are your favorite mitten knitting techniques? As I mentioned earlier, and this is not necessarily just for mitts, I like knitting with beads.

What new techniques would you like to try? Is it possible to knit two mitts on two circs?  I wouldn’t mind learning thrumming.

What are your favorite needles for knitting mittens? I like dpns for mittens.

What are some of your favorite yarns? I’m having a love affair with Malabrigo right now.

What yarn do you totally covet? Cashmere always rocks my world. I’d like to try Lush or maybe some Frog Tree alpaca.

Any pattern you would love to make if money and time were no object? One of those fabu capes in Cat Bordhi’s book.

Favorite kind of needles (brand, materials, straights or circs, etc)? Really depends on the fiber. 

If you were a specific kind of yarn, which brand and kind of yarn would you be? Black cashmere.

Do you have a favorite candy or mail-able snack? Candied ginger makes me happier than anything else, as far as candy goes, at least.

What’s your favorite animal? Beavers and my dogs (stop it, Mona.  I hear your snickering.)

Would you prefer super warm mittens or something more like fingerless mitts? I could go either way.  I wouldn’t mind trying convertible gloves, you know, the ones with fingers under a mitten top?

If you were a color what color would you be?  Black.

What is your most inspiring image, flower, or object in nature? Water, especially the ocean and the Hudson River, make me happy.  Especially after two years in the high desert.  I also like peonies and ferns.

Do you have a wishlist? Yup, on Amazon.

Anything else you’d like to share with the group today? I’m so excited at the number of people playing with me and Scout for this swap.  Thanks, and I hope you all have a lot of fun.

Hurry if You’re Going to Join

We’re at 120 folks for the KMKS.  Head on over to Swap-bot if you want to join. 

In the meantime, have you checked out Scout’s Swag?  I sent an urgent e-mail last night to tell her that I. Must. Have. A. Sushi.Wallet.  I need one like I need air, and that’s not even an exaggeration.

Thanks to the encouragement of Julie (and the Craftborg podcast for company), I started spinning up the yarn for my shawl from that lucious green roving I got at Rhinebeck.  Kay in NM, my spinning mentor, reiterated that I really need to pre-draft to get the quality of yarn I’m after, so I took her advice and am pleased with what I spun today.

The dogs are taking turns jumping onto the chair and pawing at me.  Their watches are off.  It’s still early for their afternoon stroll, but they want to go now.  Sucker that I am, off we’ll go.

I’m Just a Girl Who Can’t Say No

My oldest sister played piano for the high school musical Oklahoma!, so I can sing along to all the songs.  Even though it was about 25 years ago (sorry to point that out, MB), that music is lodged in my memory. 

Anyhow, the point is that Scout innocently (ha!) e-mails me a one-liner.  "What do you think about another swap?" And we brainstorm.  I’m convinced that we were business partners in another life, we work so well together.  Lickity splickity, before you know it, a new swap is born.

The Knit Mitt Kit Swap.  How can you resist that rhyming?  Head over to the blog to learn more about it, then to Swap-bot to sign up.  Sign ups are only until Friday, so don’t delay.

KSKS Bag: Fini

Img_1066 I spent the entire day–nearly twelve hours–sewing yesterday.  I completed two Madison bags:  one for Lisa who won it for completing Tour de Fleece and this one (almost identical–different lining) for my KSKS pal.  My pal is an exquisite knitter, so I’m super worried about the pattern. I keep looking at stitch dictionaries hoping to find just the right pattern for her and the yarn I’ve selected.  While I fret over patterns I’m working on a needle case to include as well as a little wallet per Split Yarn’s tutorial.

My almost-15-year-old nephew came over to hang with me last week.  He’s into drawing and music and art–an anomoly in my highly pragmatic family, as I am.  Well, let me clarify.  There is a lot of creativity floating around in my family, but there seems to be an inability to embrace it, to take risks with new skills.  But I’m going off on a tangent that I could write about for hours. 

So the kid comes over, and I’ve got three pounds of roving and some new dye from Selling Dye 2 You (won via Dye-O-Rama, woo hoo).  What better way to play than to mess around with these supplies?  Here are some of the results, all destined for PIF :

Img_1065 There’s a pink and black roving that didn’t make the picture.  I’m going to spin it into yarn for my nephew to use.  I tried to teach him to crochet (he wants a skater boy beanie), but he lost patience too quickly.  He thinks I’m going to make the beanie for him, but he’s wrong.  I’m a determined teacher and auntie!

Jen posted a link to this beautiful sweater.  I bought the pattern, and I’ve decided to make it as a reward for turning UFOs into FOs.  It may be the prettiest sweater I’ve seen in a long time.  Ok, it is.  And, as you know I believe, sometimes pretty is enough.

Don’t forget to sign up for the Funky Scarf Swap.  I can’t wait to challenge myself with a fun scarf for a new friend.

Catching Up

So much to show, so much to tell.  Taos was wonderful, especially because my girlie Liz adopted an adorable mutt, Tiwa, from the Taos Pueblo.  I’m sure she’ll have the whole story and pictures up before long, so I’ll let you read about them from her.  Trust me, though, Tiwa is possibly the most amazing little pup, and she got lots of love at the conference.  She’s hit the lottery going to live with such a loving family, too! 

I workshopped a story that I first drafted about two years ago, and I think I’m almost done with it.  I plan to give it one more draft, then send it out into the world of seldom-read lit mags.  Believe me, I’ll keep you posted if there is ever good news on the writing front.

I got back on the wheel pretty quickly after my return home.  Tour de Fleece, after all, is almost at a close.  I, as noted on the Tour blog, am among those who decided to change strategy.  After much input from spinners wiser than I am, I ordered some new roving for my sock yarn challenge.  I’ve got almost an entire bobbin filled, but I spin on a Lendrum, so that’s not saying much!  I do have a question, though.  I’ve got 8 oz. of roving, all of which I intend to spin.  So, I’ll also need to ply that, too, right?  So I’ll have the "length" of 4 oz. of roving, all together, right?  Does that make any sense whatsoever?

Ok.  Now for some pictures.

Img_1044 My KSKS kit from Scout!  She included a fabu fair isle pattern from Blue Moon, her own beautiful handpainted yarn, lovely stitch markers, an extra skein of sock yarn in a beautiful burgundy, pretty incense and lots of tasty goodies.  I had a great visit with her, T., the Super kids, and Mr. Gus, the baby dog.  I’ll confess.  It was hard to leave them all behind in NM!  Either they’ve got to move back east (ha!) or I may need to go back there.  By the way, did you notice how Scout chose a fabric that matches my blog? 

There were packages waiting for me when I got home, too. Img_1049_1

The gorgeous July Project Spectrum color from Mama-E.

And.

Img_1042 This lovely box of goodies from my One Skein Secret Pal.  She spun the yarn herself, and it is SO pretty!  Thank you! 

Oops! I almost forgot!

What are your favorite colors? black, pink, green

Are you a new sock knitter? How long have you been knitting socks? I knit my first sock in 1998.  I’ve knit most of a Jaywalker and a pair of Sockapaloooza socks.  So, no, not new.  But not overly-experienced, either.

Do you prefer solid or multicolored yarn? I love variegated yarn.

What fibers do you prefer in sock yarn? Wool.  I haven’t tried any blends, but would be glad to. 

Where do you usually knit socks? I’ve knit while reading, riding in the car, on the train, in my chair, during presentations, at SnB.  Wherever I can!

How do you usually carry/store small projects? In ziplock bags that are then stashed in my purse or my Madison bag.

What are your favorite sock knitting patterns? No favorites yet.  I like the Sensational Knitted Socks book.  I think the claim that it is the only sock knitting book you’ll ever need is almost true.  ‘Cept I love knitting books!

What are your favorite sock knitting techniques? I’m in major love with two socks on two circulars.  LOVE.  True love.  If I could, I’d marry it.

What new techniques would you like to try? Two toe ups on two circs.

Do you prefer circulars or dpns for sock knitting? Circulars.  Inox, which have the nicest joins, IMHO.

What are some of your favorite yarns?  Hm…Brooklyn Handspun, Scout’s Handpainted Swag, Mama-E’s fiber, Dave’s Cabin Cove.

What yarn do you totally covet? I’d love to knit cashmere socks.

Any pattern you would love to make if money and time were no object? Cat Bordhi’s cape in the first mobieus book.

Favorite kind of needles (brand, materials, straights or circs, etc)? Inox Circulars.

If you were a specific kind of yarn, which brand and kind of yarn would you be? Today I would be a Superwash sock yarn…easy to take care of!

Do you have a favorite candy or mail-able snack? Anything ginger always rocks my world.

What’s your favorite animal? beavers, dogs, horses

Do you have pets? What are their species/names/ages? Yup.  Maddie, border collie/daft dog mix, aged 2 and Tilly, blue heeler/German shepard smarty pants mix, aged 3.

If you were a color what color would you be? Black.

Describe your favorite shirt (yours or someone else’s). Today it’s a long-sleeved sailor shirt with a hood from Old Navy.

What is your most inspiring image, flower, or object in nature? Ferns.  I also love the brook in the woods where I walk the dogs.  Water always makes me happy.

Tell me the best quote you’ve ever heard or read. "Never complain, never explain" –Coco Chanel.

Do you have a wishlist? Yup

Anything else you’d like to share with the group today? I’m so glad you’re all in this with me! 

Happy Father’s Day, A Gift, KSKS, and a Cruise

Img_0596 I’m a daddy’s girl through and through.  I adore my dad, and he adores me (ok, and the other four kids, too) right back.  My father is one of the most gentle and ethical persons I know, and he has a heart as big as…well, the universe.  His favorite gifts are little treats, so this year, it was "straight up" rhubarb pie.

A big, happy thank you to Kirsten of Through the Loops.  I discovered her blog through Dye-O-Rama and have enjoyed getting to know her…and when I won a contest for the 100th comment on her blog, she sent me this lovely.Img_0985 Wonderful colors, and the card has a recipe for chocolate cupcakes–yumsters!  Kirsten was also gracious enough to post her original Sunkist Cardi pattern–I can’t wait to make one for myself.

I’m happy to report that I just finished sending out the last of nearly 200 e-mails for the KSKS participants.  I felt badly taking longer than I had promised, but I can sleep well tonight knowing that’s done.

Finally, have you heard about Mama-E’s Sea Socks 2007 Cruise?  It sounds like Noelle is thinking of going, and spending time with her and Mama-E is enough to entice me!  I don’t have my dissertation defense date yet, and it’s bound to be sometime in April, so I can’t commit to it.  There are rumors of a Fall ’07 East Coast cruise, which I will be on if it’s a go! 

I’m getting off the computer now.  I’ve been attached to it for too long over the last few days and need to finish up some knitting (gasp–did she say knitting?).

196

One hundred and ninety-six of you signed up for KSKS.  I’m astounded.  When Scout and I first started talking about setting up this swap, we decided that if 25 folks wanted to join, it would be a go.  I’ll be working on matches all week…the timing is good as my only work right now is writing my comps and playing with the dogs.

I’m having perogies and roasted veggies for dinner.  One of the joys of living in this area is Polish food.  And good Italian.  Sorry, NM, you’ve got it all over the Northeast on Mexican and New Mexican, but I’m happy to have a decent pizza again.  And Polish food.  Then, I’ll be off to knit with my childhood pals.  Still looking for an SnB that suits me time/place-wise…anyone??