Saturday, September 29, 2007


Well, I have to report that, so far, I’m winning the battle of the squirrel. I put down the heavy river stones and he has not yet been able or willing to do battle with them. I’m not saying this too loudly, however, because I don’t want the challenge to get back to the squirrel. Just, so far, so good.

This morning was the last of 4 classes my local fiber arts guild sponsored at the local community college. We had 9 students who took the class on socks, hats, and mittens. All were fairly new knitters but all willing to jump right in and experiment and learn so I think it went well overall. They were a great bunch and I really enjoyed them. Sock knitting, when you’re not an experienced knitter, is a lot to take in over just 4 classes (3 weeks). They even had a go with the MagicLoop experience and all were like the proverbial duck to water with it. Thanks, Debi, for bringing the samples for us to play with (yes, I had a go, too, as I’d never done Magic Loop before).

Skrå-Trøyer Update: It may not look like much yet, but I have gotten to the point where I will start the main motifs and side seam pattern. Next I will lay out stitch markers for each of the motifs and side seams until I get the rhythm of the pattern and I’ll be good to go for a couple of months! Actually, once I get into this part, I think it will go pretty well; having to pay attention to the pattern will help.

Victorian Bead Bag: I’ve got the knitting/beaded part finished and am just now working on writing out the pattern (it’s my own pattern) and sewing the lining. Then I’ll have to get the knitted part and lining attached to the purse frame where I’m going to try something a little new (to me). I'll post pictures when I get it done. I just love the play of the blue silver lined beads and the silver of the purse frame.

Vertical Stripe Sweater: Hip, hip, hurray!!! I’m finally completely finished with everything! This has been quite a project. I got the idea with these socks (I call them my rat pack socks because the colors reminded me of Dean and the gang in all their 1950’s splendor). I knitted the bottom of the body flat, using a striping pattern with the colors then I Kitchenered the ends together. I did the sleeves the same way. Then I made the bodice and sleeve tops. My math went terribly wrong so the bodice ended up being very wide which meant the sleeve caps were too long (they’d been made to fit the bodice). Not having the heart or the courage to rip it all out (or the yarn, to be honest), I went down the steeking road. I know steeking is supposed to be for another purpose but this sweater is wool and I figured the same principle would apply. I got out the old trusty sewing machine and sewed three passes on each side seam and sleeve top before I took my scissors to the excess. I just did it quickly and have banished all scary thoughts to the outer darkness. When I wash it for blocking I may go ahead and felt those edges down a bit. I wasn’t too sure about the sleeves but I ended up hemming them up a bit and now I feel much better about them. I can’t believe I’m finally finished. I guess I’ve had this going almost 2 years now. Sigh… I did keep some sort of track of the pattern as I was working but I’m going to have to adjust it to all the fiddly stuff I ended up having to do. I think it will be okay, though. It’ll just need some work.

I’ve been getting quite a few of my patterns worked up into actual pattern format and have been amazed at how many I’m getting. I need to figure out how to post the .pdf files and get some of them out there for people to try out. I’m hoping to finish my pattern for the Fisherman’s Sweater (aka “pretty man sweater” – long story – I’ll tell you sometime) test finished so I can make sure the instructions are reasonably accurate.

Next time I’ll try to have pics of my new line of stitch markers. I’ve been having a lot of fun with them and will have them for the next Guild meeting for people to see.

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