Thursday, July 27, 2006


Wow, it's been so long since I've posted that I forgot my password. I've had both kids home since the end of May, so we've been a bit busy. We've spent most of our time at a lake in northern Indiana, and it has been great. We've been with family and the kids have been able to play with cousins, so that has been good. However, today is a rainy day, which is not a good time at the lake to be stuck inside with all of us having cabin fever. I would be content to sit and knit all day, but alas and alack, my children actually want my attention. The noyve of them!

I have so many projects going, I've decided to have a little Free the Needles action.

Currently I am working on a cute little bag made of a thick variegated cotton by Lang called Filo Color. Best of all, I got it in the Clearance Sale Room at Mass Ave Knit Shop for just $4 each. Mine is a mix of orange, salmony pink, and white, and it is turning out nicely. Just need to finish the handles and sew them on. I saw it made on Knit One, Purl Two on DIY, but the directions on their website are scanty at best. They tell you what pieces to make, but not how to put it together, nor can you tell from their half a picture how to do it. I had to use my imagination on this, but it looks good. And here it is:

Also on the needles is a beautiful little scarf for my dear mother-in-law for her birthday next week. It is made of a lovely Koigu yarn, my first use of it, and it is, as they say, a true joy to work with. The pattern is from a book called Knit Ponchos, Wraps, and Scarves, by Jane Davis, though it is listed in searches as Knit Scarves & Shawls. Go figure. Anyway, the scarf has a lovely flared bottom on each end, to which I have added beads, another first for me. It will be off the needles soon, as her birthday is coming quickly. Here is one half. The other is hiding in the container.

I am also working on the last pattern section for a beautiful laceweight shawl from Meg Swansen's A Gathering of Lace book. This one is called the Shetland Tea Shawl, and is shown in red, though mine is being done in a cream colored Suri Alpaca from the Alpaca Yarn Co. It is so wonderful to work with that this will definitely not be my last rodeo with this yarn. It's a giant cobweb right now, and I can't wait to get it done and get it blocked.

When I am done, it should look something like this one I found on another blog by a girl named Sydney called As the Yarn Turns. Quite lovely, don't you think?

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

One of the Seven Wonders of Knitting: Blocking Lace

Who'd a thunk it?
I can't believe this:

could turn into this:

Ah, the wonders of blocking....I never cease to be amazed.

This is the amazingly simple, amazingly beautiful (in my humble opinion) shawl I made for my aunt. It is from the Wrap Style book, and it truly could not have been an easier lace pattern. With only 10 rows to repeat, half of which are simply to purl every stitch, it was a breeze. My aunt mentioned that her shoulders get cold sometimes, which, or course, set my mind to working. It is a smallish shawl, so I think it will be just the ticket. She has no idea this is coming, and I can't wait to hear what she thinks.

Monday, April 17, 2006


No, it is not a giant doily. It is my progress thus far on the above named jacket by Annie Modisett, from the current Interweave Crochet (see link 2 posts ago). This shows the back of the jacket, including armholes, and a little progress on the lapels. I did it in a single color, and so far, I am really enjoying it.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Carnival Shawl

Finalmente, the shawl is done. Es todo. It is all put together, but I haven't tucked ends and fringed it. But the hard part is over. The sewing together was an odious task, but, alas, it is done. That is all for tonight. There's another tornado warning, so I'm off to huddle in safety. Bon soir.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Cross-Stitching: Knitting AND Crocheting

"It's a beautiful day for a motor car race." Actually, it was a beautiful day for anything! Half a day off from school for my son meant a half a day filled with fun with friends, while the kids played and the moms chatted. I can't tell you how long it's been since I've had a good one of those. I didn't have to think about lunch, it was all prepared for me. My kids were entertained, I was set with some good girl talk, and all the while the sun was shining and the breeze was blowing. And that was just HALF the day! I got to spend the other half knitting with some other friends. Well, actually, they knitted and I crocheted, as I'm working on the Lacy Leaf Shrug by Annie Modisett in the latest Interweave Crochet. Yes, I'm a cross-stitcher. That is, I knit AND crochet. Not the stuff with the 14 count Aida cloth and a needle and floss. I quit that years ago. Those supplies I just had to have now languish near the tubs full of yet-to-be-used-yarn. I haven't had the heart to break it to the cross-stitch stuff that it will never see the light of day again. I figure if I leave it there in the same room with the yarn, it can at least go on hoping that I will someday pick it when I do my search and seizure (not the kind where you fall to the floor and writhe. I leave that for my husband to do when he enters that room and sees how much yarn I have.)

I got one more strip of the Carnival Shawl put together tonight, but it doesn't look different enough from the photo I posted yesterday, so I didn't bother to post one tonight. Actually, I've renamed this project. For me, this is actually the Nautilus Shawl. I opened the new Knitty today, and there were some knitted "Nautie" toys, and low and behold, I found the Nautilus shell I kept trying to think of name of to describe the motifs of the Carnival Shawl. That is EXACTLY what I meant, but for the life of me, I couldn't come up with it. Thanks Knitty!

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Carnies Unite

Two words for you, Wendy. Carnival Shawl.
I got all the motifs done and started putting it together today. You are looking at the right half, minus 1 motif on the left most strip, which will be added to the bottom tomorrow, because it is 11:30 p.m. here in the Midwest. The putting together might be worse than making the motifs. I strongly advise you to lay it out on the floor, or other flat surface, so you can see what you're doing. Intuitively obvious maybe, but you could end up playing Twister with it if you don't. Good luck, and may the force be with you!

Tuesday, March 28, 2006


It was two long weeks without a babysitter and without any knit-togethers with my friends. Now I've had two nights in a row and I'm feeling nicely sassified. After getting together with my friends last night, I felt it had done me as much good as taking a nice long deep breath. Just feel yourself doing it. Ahhhhh.... I felt reconnected and good. It was so nice to see everyone and share a drink and a tink (I had to make it rhyme!). I come home refreshed and ready to be a better mom and a better me. I'm easily pleased.

Sunday, March 26, 2006


While no one could ever acuse me of being a slacker knitter, I certainly have been a slacker blogger. But that's because I've been busy knitting. Too busy to write about it. And here's the proof:

I finally finished Annie Modisett's Circular Cocoon Jacket from the Fall 2005 Vogue Knitting. I didn't do all the twisted stitches and just used a varigated yarn, recycled from an ugly silk and cashmere sweater. I knew it could be something pretty if I freed it from the ugly sweater. And because my friend, Cathy, pictured below, says I never wear anything I make, I actually wore it last night to her birthday dinner.

And this is the Isolde sweater from Twisted Sisters, which I called Strip Tease, since it is made up of strips and then set on the bias, then picked up and gusseted and skirted and....Actually, it's easy and fun and different. However, the sleeves ended up looking a little Victorian the way I blocked it, so I'm going to try to reblock it, and if that doesn't work, I'll try to take them in a bit. I've been working out, but my guns are not that big yet!

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Ah, the first day of spring and we're snowed in. Well, not exactly. It's a choice. I love it when it gets so snowy that you have to stay home. We were expecting 6-8 inches but only got about 3 or so, but we're having a stay in day anyway.

I can't believe how long it's been since I've posted, but I've been quite busy knitting. I'm finishing up lots of projects, such as the circular sweater from the previous Vogue Knitting magazine which I got done last week, and now am finishing up on the Twisted Sisters Isolde sweater. When that is done, I'll have yarn I can return and exchange in time for the big sale at my LYS later this week. This buying hiatus is killing me, but it is forcing me to use up stash, which is always a good thing. Photos to follow....

Saturday, March 04, 2006


What I Did on My Not-So-Summer Vacation
There are my sons having a blast on the beach. The weather was glorious, and it was so nice to be together as a family. I was able to do lots of knitting, too.

I worked on the Am Kamin, which is coming along nicely. I have since started the first sleeve, and plan to join it all together at the raglan decreases. We shall see......

I also knitted up a cute tank top, modeled here by my friend, Cathy. I thought it fit me great till my two twig friends tried it on and it fit them. Let's just say I have a little more frontal real estate than they do. Maybe this will turn into a gift. Speaking of bust, on the stash-busting front, I actually bought the materials for this as my second project of my knitting career, back in March of 2004. Two years later, I finally got it out of my stash and made it. I based it on a pattern found at Spun Magazine . I used Crystal Palace Mikado Ribbon and Berrocco Candy FX held together. I added garter stitch edges at the bottom and around the armholes, as the holes were quite large and would not cover my bra. I think it turned out nicely.

Today was finishing day. I finally finished the few inches of sleeve I had to do on my son's Tomten Jacket, by Elizabeth Zimmermann. The Malabrigo yarn I used is SO soft, and the color, Azul Lindo, is appropriately named (pretty blue).

These boots are made for lounging. The UGG boots are finally done. I based it on this pattern, seen on Knitty Gritty, "Das Boot." I used moccassin bottoms instead of high-heeled shoes, and the moccassin bottoms I picked up at Hobby Lobby already had the holes in them, so I didn't have to drill anything. I used GGH Velour, which looks and feels like suede. The fluffy white stuff at the top is Gedifra Chapello. They're not pretty, but they're done, and at this point, that's all I'm shooting for!

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Prepare for Absence
I am off to sunny Florida for a few days soon, so the ole blog will be dormant for a bit. But, I just thought I'd leave you with proof of my dive off the deep end. As if it wasn't enough to be knitting a complicated Aran pattern in Japanese, I am now translating and about to bite off another Aran, this time in French (Pull Col Roule). Some call it crazy, I call it industrious/adventurous. Lest my brain go to mush, I must feed it with some exercise. I'll let you know how the mental gymnastics go.

Sunday, February 12, 2006

I am bored, bored, bored with all my projects. Not just one of them, all of them. I don't feel like doing any of them. I finished my first pink sock yesterday and promptly put it on and wore it with a non-matching black sock. Okay, they were inside my boots, so it doesn't matter. I wish I could say I was a believer now, but I don't know that I have the energy to start, let alone finish the mate. I worked on 1 row of my CIT sweater and now I'm bored with that. I've worked on the Strip Tease for days, now I'm bored with that. None of my umpteen other projects is calling me either. I think I need a nap. I'm feeling snarky....

Friday, February 10, 2006

My son helped me make "knit balls," as he calls them. This is Cottage Craft wool that I got for my mom for her birthday, which was yesterday. The wool was a little scratchy, so I washed it all and am winding it for her, since she doesn't have a swift or a winder. She's not hard-core like me. I've got to have a swift and winder in every corner. Anyway, the washed hanks did get a little twisty, which I'm finding every 15 seconds while we are winding. Wind, wind, STOP, untangle, untangle. Okay, go. STOP! Untangle. My son thinks we're playing Red Light, Green Light.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

I have nearly had it up to my baby blues with blogspot. For the last 2 days, I've done nothing but try to get photos posted, buttons on my button bar, etc., etc., but the &$@*)ing thing has not been cooperating. People tell me they cannot get my site to come up. What is up with that? I change something and it looks great in preview, then, VIOLA, it's not there when I republish for real. So alas and alack, I've had it for now. Today I will leave you a link to some great tips for knitters, especially those participating in the Knitting Olympics, on how not to muff your body up in the process. Here it is:
PT Tips for Knitters

Monday, February 06, 2006

Superbowl of Knitting

Strip Tease
Yesterday was the Superbowl of Knitting for me. We watched several episodes of 24 on DVD, finishing the second season, then, of course, the superbowl, so I got lots of knitting time. DS2 got the tummy bug from DS1, so between pukes, there was plenty of sitting and knitting. I worked on the Twisted Sisters Isolde sweater, which is done in strips, which you see pictured here. It is coming right along. You've never seen knitting fly faster than it did when DS2 started vomitting right beside me, mid-row. It (the sweater I was knitting) landed across the room while I grabbed for the bowl in record time. I'm not sure a whole second ticked off the clock. It was that fast. I wish I'd had the video camera going. Well, for the fast move, not for the upchuck. That I could go a long time without seeing again.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

No Knitting for the Last 2 days!!!?????

No Knitting for the Last 2 days!!!?????
You heard it here, folks.  I have not touched the needles in two whole days.  Am I sick?  No, but my son is.  Poor guy tossed his cookies all night long, and has laid on the couch all day.  I could have tossed my own cookies yesterday when I got the news that his school will no longer provide elementary classes next year, and we now have to scurry to find him a new school AFTER the application dates have passed.  Great timing, huh?  I’m sure this was meant to be, in some odd way, but for right now, it is a pain in the tushki.  I don’t do well with uncertainty.  I will have to learn to do so for the next couple of months, as I will have no choice.  So, anyway, I’ve not had the opportunity nor the gumption to knit for the last couple of days.  But maybe I will tonight.  Wish us luck in the school department…..

Monday, January 30, 2006

More Finished (and Semi-finished) Objects

I was too lazy to post these photos over the weekend, so here, now is my progress report.

That's me, modeling my Rowan Big Wool Coat. This was just sent to my by my mentor, Barb, who took the photo at our weekly get-together at Barnes and Noble. If you look in the background, you will see that they've gotten hip to us and strategically posted some knitting books on an end cap right by the cafe where we get together with 5-20 people to knit and for Barb to teach her unending, 50 years in the making, knitting knowledge. I'm still pushing her (gently) to get started on her book of awesome tips. Look for it in your favorite bookstore....soon.

This is the Tahki Ghost Print sweater I talked about earlier. I had finished it previously, but then decided it needed to have a shawl collar and cuffs. So here is my friend, Cathy, modeling the finished product for me.

And here is a shot of my progress on the Crossed in Translation sweater. Please note that it is crammed onto a 24 inch needle, so you're only seeing what I can show without popping stitches off the needles.

Here is the halfway finished UGG boot. Just a few more rows to go, but I'm bored.....SO....

I move on to yet another project (remember how starting projects really jazzes me?). Yesterday I started a Twisted Sisters sweater, Isolde. Because of my husband's (cough, cough) mandate that I use up my stash before buying new yarn, I searched around for something to go with the Artyarns Supermerino I had chosen for this sweater (without knowing I would need 24 skeins) in colors 209 and 210, and I finally found some Chelsea Silk that was just right (as goldilocks would say. So here is a photo of my first strip of the sweater.

That's all for now, kids. Julie, out.....

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Got Yarn?
I do! The nicest woman, Pat M., came to my house on Saturday, bringing her Ashford Traveller spinning wheel, to teach me how to spin on a wheel. I've spun on spindles, but not on a wheel, and I've been itching to try. It thrills my husband to no end that I've found yet another thing to obsess about! Pat had answered my question about why people knit socks, and I noticed that she, too, was in Indianapolis. We corresponded a bit and I asked her if she knew someone who could teach me to spin, and she offered to do it herself. She was so nice, so gentle, and so patient with me. She taught me that you can't do anything wrong, except where you're not getting what YOU want. That was freeing. I found myself in a Zen mode after awhile, and I did not want to stop. It was SO relaxing! She explained that after awhile you begin to tredle at the beat of your heart, and I guess that's what makes it so mesmerizing and relaxing. My kids had their cousin here to play with, so I was able to spin to my heart's content. I can't say enough how much I appreciated this woman's generosity, and I will have her to thank while I lower my blood pressure over the coming years. Well, that it after the initial surge of pressure when my husband says, "You want WHAT???? A SPINNING WHEEL????"
So here is a photo of my first wheelspun yarn. The yarn on the right (grey) is a two-ply Shetland (yes, Pat also taught me to ply), and the one on the right (white) is a two-ply alpaca, which I did on a spindle and Pat helped me ply on the wheel.

Thursday, January 26, 2006

I have no beautiful photos to post today, but it was a productive day. I did several more rows on the Am Kamin sweater, and it is looking quite lovely. Not enough progress on that to bother with posting a photo. I also added a shawl collar and cuffs to a Ghost Print sweater I'd finished last month. My husband actually let me sleep in one Saturday and took the boys down to a yarn shop and bought me the yarn and pattern to make the sweater. With that big yarn, it was so fast and easy. I had it done in two days. But, I really made it too small. So, I bought back one of the balls of yarn I'd previously returned (yes, knit store owners, I'm sure you love people like me), and today I finally sat down and added the collar and cuffs. It looks much better now. Photos to follow.

I'm also almost finished with the second UGG boot. I'm SICK of it, though. I just want it to be done. I have two prototypes, which, like it or not, are going to be a pair. They do not look alike, but they are reasonable facsimiles of one another, and I'm sure as (*&(*^&* not taking the first one apart and making it match the second. Herein lies my problem with socks. Once I'm past the initial climax of finishing the first one, I'm over it. I just want to roll over and if I smoked, I'd have a cigarette. I don't want to make another one. I don't want to watch a movie twice, either. I'm a one time and out kind of girl.

Speaking of climaxing, I came up with a new word today to describe the addictive quality of knitting for me: Knitphrodisiac. That's what knitting is for me, a kniphrodisiac. Actually, if the truth be told, it is the STARTING of the knitting project that is the knitphrodisiac for me. After that, my interest wanes. Then I start another project to get my fix. And the cycle continues. Herein lies the answer to my many unfinished objects. I love the starting, it's the finishing I'm not into. Same with my stash. I can shop a whole lot faster than I can knit. And once the stuff is home with me, it isn't screaming at me anymore quite as loudly as it did in the store. Not to mention, I've got the umpteen unfinished objects hawking over me. And so it is, and so it shall be.

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Another One Bites the Dust

Today was finishing day for me. I finished this Rowan Big Wool Cardigan/Coat, buttons and all. I've also gotten through phase one of the second prototype of the UGG boots I'm making, and am in process of the second phase, which will be the outer, suede layer. We'll see....

I AM-KAMIN along with my sweater
There she is, my progress to date on the Crossed in Translation sweater. Boy, oh boy, am I ever glad that I switched yarns! The cables just pop in this Maggie's Aran. I love it! I just tried it on, and I think it will do nicely.
I'm so thankful to whoever made the suggestion to scan in the charts and flip them to do the second half of the panels. Why didn't I think of that? It worked like a charm!

Friday, January 20, 2006

Sock It To Me Baby...

Well, it's finally happened. I've finally succumbed to the sock knitting craze, as I swore I never would. What's with these socks anyway? What's the big deal? My mentor knits them constantly, and is never without one on the needles. So finally, I tried on one of hers. Hmmmmmmmm......these feel scrapey, scratchy seam to harrass my poor little toes.....hmmmmm....maybe I ought to try a pair.......

So what is it people? What is it with these socks? Why are there so many sock knitters out there? What are you Jaywalkers up to, anyway? Somebody esplain it to me, por favor. In the meantime, check out my socks:

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Here are a couple of pictures of the bolero jacket I made for my sister-in-law for Christmas. The pattern is from Vogue Knitting Winter 2005. I think it turned out great, and she tells me she gets lots of compliments and questions about it.

Monday, January 16, 2006

I took another photo of the Two Sticks and a String sweater to see if it looks better in plain sunlight.

Here is the latest rendition of my Crossed In Translation sweater. As you can see, not much progress. But for the fourth time around, I'd gotten bored with the pattern. I moved on to finishing a Rowan Big Wool cardigan I'd started last month. It's now all done but the crying. That is, the collar and one side seam. I will post pictures of it when it is all done.

This latest Am Kamin is being done in Maggie's Aran from Maggie Jackson. It seems to have great stitch definition. I think it will work great, but if anyone knows why it wouldn't, PLEASE let me know now!!!

Monday, January 09, 2006

Here is a photo of my progress on the Two Sticks and a String aran sweater, too. It is being done in Wensleydale yarn, and it is just beautiful in person. It has taken a backseat to the AmKamin for awhile, but I'll get back to it....eventually.

Crossed in Translation...Again
Here is a photo of my progress on the beginning of the AmKamin sweater. I've done about 5 rows of the body pattern, and it gets pretty boring after the 3rd or 4th repetition! Well, maybe not boring, but I do get sick of doing it! This sweater may be a long time coming. I may have used up my excitement on all the swatches. Plus, the first week's excitement seems to have dissipated over at the Crossed in Translation blog, too. What are you all up to out there? Let me hear from you!

I don't know how to get the lighting quite right in these photos to really show the cables. If you all have any suggestions, I'd sure like to hear them!

Saturday, January 07, 2006

Here is a swatch from the AmKamin Crossed in Translation sweater I'm knitting. It's in Rowan Cashsoft DK, and I'm zipping along now, knitting the sweater in the round, and I'm up to row 4 of the main body pattern. This swatch just shows a couple of the cables with garter stitch on the sides. I tore out the other big swatch of all the cables and started knitting the sweater before I remembered to take a picture of it. Oh, well.

I took a break from this to work on the Tomten jacket I'm making for my son. I had an hour and a half to knit on it while we drove down to the IU basketball game today. GO HOOSIERS!!!! I didn't think they'd pull it off, but they beat Ohio State in the last few seconds. Ended up sitting next to a couple from my hometown. Small world! My sweet husband, a Purdue grad, actually took me to the game, a great sacrifice, indeed! True love! ( :

Friday, January 06, 2006

And here is my first sweater knitted in the round, which I finished the same week as the pink one below. This, too, was done in Karabella Aurora 8. I love that stuff!
I thought I'd try to post some of my FO's while I'm thinking about it, so here's the first try. This is a sweater I made out of Karabella Aurora 8. In fact, it was my first sweater. The pattern was in an Online magazine. Please ignore the giant fruits...and the ones on the pants!
For the Crossed In Translation knitalong, I've cast on and finished the fancy ribbing. Now I'm about to start the body!!!! I'm so excited to be getting going on this. I'm frustrated with this blogger, though, because I can't get my photos uploaded.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

I've been so busily posting over at the Crossed in Translation blog that I haven' t posted anything here in a while.

I've done many a swatch and even started the sweater, only to frog it when it was 45 stitches too big! Now I've changed yarns to Rowan Cashsoft DK, measured 100 times, and I've cast on in the tubular cast on, and I'm ready to roll!!! I'll be posting photos as soon as I figure out how to do that!