Monday, July 31, 2006

Woolie Ewe Haul

So Friday I get an email from the Woolie Ewe that they are having a 40% off everything sale. From what I've heard not everyone knew about the sale & all I can say this THANK GOODNESS because it was packed in that place!! But late Friday night, my list began. I tried to think of upcoming projects so I wouldn't get too out of control & I would have some focus. You see, some yarn NEVER goes on sale. So now is the time to get it at a discount, I mean, if you are going to buy it anyway!!! The idea of "everything" on sale didn't register for me so lucky for my wallet I didn't include needles or books on my wishlist.

So here is the rundown of what I got and more importantly, it's purpose.
* A bag (10 skeins) of red Cascade 220 to make the Knitty Mariah
* 2 skeins pink / 2 skeins choc brown Cascade 220 to make an unnamed felted bag of some sort
* 2 skeins Plymouth Baby Alpaca Grande in Ivory to make a scarf for Patrick's dad for Christmas
* 6 balls of Rowan kidsilk spray to make Aimee (see Projects of Interest)
* 2 skeins of Plymouth Encore in pink / grey varigated to make a scarf & hat for a friend's child for Christmas
* addi Turbo size 7, 24"
* addi Turbo size 8, 24"

And that's all folks!

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Curse of the Hand Knitter

I am a self-confessed extreme bargain shopper - therefore my closet runneth over with $10 deals. I have so many clothes that it's seriously not even funny anymore. I had an obvious epiphany recently that since I work from home & don't go anywhere except Walmart, Target, knitting events & shopping that if I had 10 -20 really great pieces of clothes that I was totally in love with that I'd be set for most occassions. Recently we have gone out to eat to places that I didn't feel comfortable in jeans or my ratty capri pants and then there was the panic while trying to figure out what to wear to go see Mamma Mia! Maybe I should have a few pairs of nice pants & a few tops that aren't tshirts, then I'd know have effortless pieces in my closet no matter where I'm asked to go. Which brings me to my point....

Nordstrom is having their anniversary sale so I decided to get something to fit into this new philosophy. Something stylish yet classic that I could throw on and look great but not like I am trying too hard. My criteria was simple - nothing over $100 but nothing "cheap". So in my search I found the prettiest sweater in a great chocolate brown color, put it in my shopping bag online & held my breath as they charged my debit card the $70 some odd dollars. I am a grown up now, I should be wearing something other than a M*A*S*H tshirt & pants that can be long or are convertible to capris from Walmart! I anxiously awaited it's arrival in my mailbox. Flash to this's here! It's so pretty.... what easy construction....Brillant. I COULD MAKE THIS! Is it really worth nearly $80 if I could make it? Should I pay someone else for simple design and construction that I could copy & make myself? It's soft & I love the yarn - get's ACRYLIC! What the hell? I'm completely confused. I know that the yarn I'd buy to make it PLUS the time it would take me to design (copy?) the pattern PLUS the time it would take me to knit it would be WAY more than $80. I just don't know if I could ever be happy with this garment though knowing that I could do it myself but make it even better by customizing it to my body. It could be slimmer through the waist to play up my assets. I'd like it to be just a tad longer.

Will I ever be able to buy a sweater at a store ever again in my whole life? Or a hat or scarf or....dare I say it....socks (gulp)? I guess I could look at the bright side. If I take it back, I have an extra $80 for yarn shopping......

Monday, July 17, 2006

Instant Gratification X 2

Isn't this great? I am in love with this hat & scarf combo. I worked on this scarf & made it about half way through Saturday night at our knitting group & then knitted for a few hours yesterday to finish it up and do the hat. The hat is so super easy - the pattern can be found on the Berroco website, it's called but I didn't use the Softee with it. The scarf is a plain garter stitch knitted on size 50 needles, and only 10 stitches across! Now I remember why I enjoy knitting on huge needles though this is my first time on 50s. I have loved this yarn (Berroco Hip Hop in BeBop shade) since I first layed eyes on it & but it finally decided that it needs to be mine. Well, actually it is my sister's Christmas present, but I did have the good sense to buy enough yarn to make a matching set for myself. I do think I'm going to add about an inch to my hat though. This was so fun & quick that I feel like I've accomplished something. So much for working on my new size 3 needles! (I'd like to thank Priscilla for modeling for me & not giving me any grief about it).

Another great & quick project that I had a ball knitting. This apple dishcloth compliments of on the LoneStar Knitter's list. It really was one of the most fun things that I have made in quite some time. It was quick, just enough of a pattern to keep me interested but not so much that I couldn't watch TV - or drink wine. I will be doing more - these are supposed to be a gift for my mom, we'll see how many I get done!

I love on-the-needles projects that come off-the-needles finished before I even have a chance to blog about them. Sometimes a girl just needs instant gratification!

Friday, July 14, 2006


I really think I have a problem. I have been buying yarn like a maniac! While Patrick was gone here is the yarn I acquired and the accompanying excuse..I mean reason I bought each. Why I feel that I have to justify my purchases is just beyond me. He doesn't care. I have the money. Really, does it matter? But every single time I buy some for no reason I have to attach a reason to it! However, coincidentally I do have a reason for all this.
** 10 balls of Jojoland Melody wool in a fingering weight - top left. My reason for this is so horrible. It was on ebay & I was feeling competitive? Is that wrong? I had been watching their auctions every since a girl on the Lonestar Knitters list that I am on won some great cashmere from them. I loved this colorway & it has the elusive red that I seek for the perfect gift for my sister. Not sure that this is it, but hey, it's as good of a reason as any. And I got all 10 balls - not that I needed anything like 10 balls - for $36.00 total ($65 retail) - so really - how could I not do that? Plus I felt like a real woman when I beat the other winches out of this yarn.
** 7 skeins of Fun Fur or Fancy Fur - top right. Reason? THEY WERE $1!!! I like to knit chemo caps out of this so I seriously couldn't pass it up for $1. It's at the Big Lots at Independence & 15th Street in Plano in case you are close to there & I bought it on July 3rd so they probably still have some. Some of the same colors was marked $2 though so make sure you are getting the cheapest (mismarked??) stuff.
** 2 skeins of Plymouth Encore Chunky is the prettiest pink ever - bottom left. I bought it thinking I'd make another Breast Cancer scarf & it seemed like a chunky enough weight to go pretty quickly, but smooth enough to try cables. Now who knows what it will end up being. Real reason? I went to the Woolie Ewe to buy ANOTHER book - Stitch N Bitch Nation - and truly, who can leave there without yarn?
** 10 skeins of Sugar N Creme cotton though only 9 are pictured - 1 is MIA - bottom right. Reason? THEY WERE $1! And I wanted to try my hand at dish clothes, the real use being for dish clothes for my Mom's new house. I made one (picture to follow) and I'm just not sure they are big enough for her to use for that purpose. The pattern was so entirely fun & it took no time to make though! Back to the yarn. For some reason I couldn't buy just a couple skeins, I had to buy 10, since it was still only $10 worth. Don't ask me why - it's a sickness.
** 2 skeins of Cotton Tots - to make squares for baby blankets for the Lonestar Knitters group.
** 1 skein red Patton's Merino - to make fingerless gloves for my little sis who is going off to college next of course...her new school colors. It's my first stab at cables & they are so fun! Just hard enough to keep it interesting but easy enough to still drink wine while knitting or to watch tv without making too many errors.

I've been knitting At Knit's End by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee & I realize now that if knitters are reading this, they are nodding their heads in agreement. If my family or non-knitting friends are reading, they are probably planning an intervention.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Bored Stiff.

This will probably be boring for ya'll too because I can't post any pictures. Patrick left for Dublin / London on Friday & took our camera with him so I can't take photos for my blog - THE NERVE! What, is the once in a lifetime trip pictures more important than my knitting progress? Ha. Seriously, I'm not excited about one thing I am knitting: Here is what I have OTN:
* Rowan Beth sweater. It's not so much that I am bored with it than that I'm stuck & paralyzed with fear that I'm going to have to frog the whole thing so I haven't progressed at all. I have another private lesson with Alissa on July 10th so I really need to be done with the back by then. I'll try to work on it.
* Pink Left Leaning Decrease lace scarf for donation to the Breast Cancer scarf drive. It is the pattern we were giving in my lace class at Fiber Fest to further understand....any guesses? Left leaning decreases!!!! I do like it but I just can't concentrate on it right now & I have no good excuse.
* Hobby Lobby had Sugar n Cream cotton on sale for 0.99 last week so I went & bought a chunk of it to make new dishclothes for my Mom as a house warming present. I folded clothes for her when I was home in May & I told her she was in NO way to bring those dish cloths / towels into her new house! I think it's just one of those things that we as women pay no attention to & never buy new for ourselves. So I'm working on a dishcloth with an apple motif that was designed by Rainy - a girl on my LoneStar Knitters yahoo list - the design is FANTASTIC. I have never worked with cotton & am not sure how I'm feeling about it. I literally just started it about, oh, 5 rows ago, so I'm still struggling to work with yarn that doesn't have much stretch.

I finished the second pinwheel baby blanket - pictures to follow. I am pretty pleased with it despite the fact that after about an inch of seed stitch border it still curls a little. I really don't think the baby will mind either.

Now to my recent book fetish. I don't know what in the world is wrong with me but in the past 3 weeks or so I have added quite a few knitting books to my library. As if I didn't have enough already (these are in addition to my many magazines). I joined a craft book club ( in case you care) so 5 of these were from that & they were uber cheap. Here is what I have gotten:
* One Skein by Leigh Radford
* Scarf Style - editted by Pam Allen (fav of all these for sure - changed the way I see scarves)
* 200 Knitted Blocks by Jan Eaton - I was deadly curious & figure I'll use this eventually
* At Knit's End - Stephanie Pearl-McPhee - hysterical.
* Modular Knits by Iris Schreier
* Vogue Knitting from Amazon - I LOVE it. I am highly impressed & it's worth the hype. Terrific design section.
* Loop-d-Loop by Teva Durham - for one pattern that I wanted that was $6 but I could buy the book on ebay for $11 shipped. I mean really - no question what you should do. I like several things in there.
* Stitch N Bitch Nation by Debbie Stoller - picked up at The Woolie Ewe yesterday. The BEST discussion on adjusting a pattern for yarn substitions & pattern mod that I've seen yet. I am starting to study now!
Thus my lack of recent knitting. I've been reading about knitting more than I've actually been knitting. I know that sounds wrong, but it's just true.

So that's what I'm up to. I'll post pictures just as soon as I get my camera back & download those...cultural experience / pub crawling pictures from the other side of the pond! BTW - I did think to remind him that yarn makes a great souvenir. I've since searched & though I doubt he'll go seek out a yarn store (since I also picked out some Celtic jewelry) but maybe maybe maybe he'll run across something at a street vendor? Apparently knitting as a hobby has not caught on in Dublin so you actually have to search for yarn, you just don't trip over it as I imagined. I'll let you know!