Sunday, December 31, 2017

And That's a Wrap!

As I get ready to greet the new year, with hopeful anticipation that it will be a good one...I have one final project to share with you.
The Indie Gift Along is getting close to the madness that is the New Year's Eve party and the "locking" of the threads, because as 2017 ends and 2018 begins the knit along comes to a close.

I don't think I have it in me to finish one more project, and although that means that I only have 2 Finished Objects in the Finished Object threads one of them was a doozy!

Presenting my version of Phoenix by Svetlana Loginova.  (If you like shawls you really should check out her pattern store, she has some epic ones!)

I used Knit Picks Gloss Lace in the colorway Sterling.  The entire piece took just under 5 skeins or 2221 yards of yarn!  (This would be why I couldn't Opadoo this year!)

Size US 2 (2.75mm) needles and thin yarn, you would think would result in a small shawl...but you'd be very wrong!

63 inches square (140 cm) means this shawl is wider and deeper than my usual model is tall!

And as we woke  up to a Winter Wonderland and it is snowing yet again, the model balked at getting modeled shots out in the snow...so instead I draped it as "artfully" as I could, allowed the knitting inspector to give it his "seal of approval" and made a quick collage for my finished object post!
The pattern itself is very straight forward, with charts spread over 12 pages so you can read them easily.  The only "fiddly" part at all is the "pea stitch" which covers a right and a wrong side row, but after a few (hundred) of them, they become as intuitive as the rest of the pattern. (For quite a lot of it I didn't needed to really follow the chart, just glance at it every now and then!)

One of my traditions is to start the new year the way I intend the year to continue...so today we will be cleaning up and setting things in place to start Monday the way we intend to go on!  Happy, together as a family and warm and cozy in our little house!

I wish you the very best of things in the upcoming year!

~M




Thursday, December 28, 2017

Sweaters and Shawls and Socks, Oh My!

Although 2017 isn't quite over, there are a few days left, I thought today would be a good one to look back at what I managed to accomplish this year, at least knitting and design wise.

As usual, there was knitting completed that can't be shared yet, but there is quite a bit that can!

January saw the publication of The White Queen's Shawl, with Knotions.  It, currently, holds the position of my most popular pattern on Ravelry.

February had me publishing Overgrowth, a quick moebius cowl knit in a fingering weight yarn. 

March was a "two-fer" month with socks and a smaller shawl/scarf..Disco Tuned and Living on Floyd Time.

April I was back in Knotions with Fine Tuned Socks.

May was an exciting month for me, with three patterns released and one was in a book!  Mock Turtle Socks was published in Artful Arches which is available as a Ravelry download, a Knit Picks download and the physical book through the Knit Picks website.  It also saw the release of my Second Saturday Shawl in partnership with Skein Shop and the Linen Swatch Cloth, available for free on Skein Shops blog or as a paid pdf on Ravelry.

June and July each saw a sock pattern, part of the "Tuned" series, with Knot Tuned Symphony and Knot Tuned the Ballet.

Back to Knotions I went in August with Twined Vines.  I had so much fun designing this one that I did it twice, once in a fingering weight and once in a lace weight yarn.


September saw my first "footie" socks, with flirty little cuffs!  Ain't She Sweet works well in both self striping and plainer yarns.


And back to Knotions again in October with Agalina....because who wouldn't want to knit a glacier?

November was all about my Indecisive Heart.  I loved the cotton yarn I used for it, which I got from Unplanned Peacock during the summer when they were at the Mid Ohio Fiber Festival.  Such a pretty combination of colors and a wonderfully soft yarn to knit with.

December and my gift to you was another free pattern on Knotions....Hike to Marion Falls.  This truly is the easiest of lace patterned shawls!  A single increase, a single decrease and all the shaping is done outside of the patterning.

Other things were knit that weren't my own patterns during the year...a Quill Sweater
a Whispering Softly Cowl,  You Shall Pass socks , Autumn Cornucopia Shawl,  Ostrich Plum Baby Bonnet, Acropolis Hat,
Pocket Full of Dice bag, Attack of the Killer Rabbits Cowl, Sylph Shawl, Balderdash Hats, (I made two!) Be Strong and Carry On socks, another pair of Run You Clever Boy socks (this time in worsted weight!)...

Other things that will be my patterns or were just knit off the top of my head...two Colourmart contest piece shawls...one to be Days of Wine and Roses the other to be Lasciel. and a couple more pairs of no-real-pattern socks.

Currently on my needles I have an Orenberg Shawl, and a tank top, that I hope to finish in the next day or two and a long term endless garter stitch blanket which I will carry around with me for at least a few more months, adding a row here and there.

Not a bad amount of knitting, writing, photographing, editing, testing and publishing for a year!


Monday, December 25, 2017

A Merry Christmas to All....






I wish you the happiest of days, filled with good food, good friends and loved ones to warm your heart.

~M

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Wips are Wips are Wips are....

Now that my holiday sock knitting is done I have returned to my Indie Gift Along Knits.

Unfortunately you will have to take my word on how they are progressing because lighting in Central Ohio in December in the evening is not at all conducive to taking good WIP photos.

The shawl is trucking right along....I am nearly to the last three pages of charts and the top is holding firm at 50% completion!

If, and it is a big if because the rows are long and the nights are short, I can finish up the charted section of the shawl by Friday, all will be well in my GAL knitting world.

So you know, because of that, Minnie Mouse the Muse is screaming in my ears about a mittens pattern.

So while I knit, and get some pies into the oven...how's about a little Christmas music?

~M

Friday, December 15, 2017

Hike to Marion Falls.




I've been knitting for so long that very few things classify as "hard" in my book...some things are more fiddly than others and from a designer perspective some are much harder to explain, but a lot of people find that the idea alone of knitting "intricate looking" lace is hard!

It doesn't have to be.













A Half Pi shawl is the ideal place for newer lace knitters to dip their toes into the water of lace knitting.  All the shaping takes place outside of the patterning so you are not worrying about increases or decreases having "un-matched" increases or decreases.

This shawl, Hike to Marion Falls, takes the simplicity one small step further and uses only one type of increase, a yarn over, and one type of decrease, a centered double decrease.





The decreases line up through the sections of the shawl, so as on a long hike, you have landmarks to guide you from the top of the trail to the bottom.

The lace pattern in Hike to Marion Falls mimics the play of the rocks and water of a waterfall and is inspired by pictures of waterfalls in Oregon.


Marion Falls, Oregon


As with most shawls, any yarn weight and needles could be used, I opted for a wonderful fingering weight yarn from Valley Yarns, Charlemont.  With the subtle sheen of the silk and the bounce of the merino wool, I love this yarn for shawls!

Creating this pattern was quite the challenge for me!  Limiting myself to that single increase, single decrease and wanting to have landmarks for the knitter (myself to start with) to follow was the biggest challenge, but I think it turned out pretty well!

Obviously, so did the editor for Knotions!  And thanks to her, you can get the pattern free!

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Getting to be Crunch Time!

My knitting is starting to get a little frantic as we approach not just Christmas but the end of the Indie Gift Along. (It ends with 2017 on December 31st.)

I took a little bit of a break from the lace shawl (it is over half way done and I think I am "in the groove" of not needing to read every single square of the chart so hopefully the remainder goes fairly quickly!)

Phoenix by Svetlana Loginova....

The break knitting was a pair of super quick worsted weight Run You Clever Boy by Artesanitarium Designs.  

Knit Picks Felici worsted in Spaceman.

Some non-GAL socks in Knit Picks Felici worsted Treehouse colorway for TOB also jumped on and off my needles...



 leaving me with just the Goth Kitty for TDQ to get done before the holiday.

What's on your needles today?

~M

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

It's still not that Christmas Feeling

Maybe it is just that as time goes by and my children grow, the excitement of Christmas isn't quite what it was...or maybe it is the October weather in December.....

But it just doesn't quite feel like Christmas yet.

We've mostly decorated, you saw some of what we did in the Silent Sunday collage...in total there are six trees, ten wreaths (we do have spots for a couple more I just haven't had the time to dig them out) garland, "birds flying" around the house with decorations.  We have played Christmas music and done a few craftsy type projects, mostly involving food!...

The madness of GAL (Gift Along if you are new to the party) is in full gear.  I am so very close to being half way through my shawl. (And still sitting firmly in the camp of the Opadon't!)
My top is also close to the half way point.

I have yarn picked out for socks for kids...
And a fancy dinner menu being planned.....

Maybe a little of this will get me in the Christmas Spirit....

~M