Wednesday, December 19, 2007

This Used To Be My Playground

My co-worker is blasting 80s & 90s music this week (in between Christmas carols) - from New Kids on the Block to Genesis. It's made me a bit homesick for my friends & family so I'm especially looking forward to an extended vacation down south next week including the week of mostly uninterrupted knitting...

I've finished the Chaos sweater - blocking & all. I'm rather sad that it's over & now I'll have to begin a new project that's not the Chaos sweater...This was really the most fun knitting project ever and it looks fabulous. It knit up so quickly despite the continuous die rolling.

I'm still working on the Big Snugs KAL - trying not to get ahead of my knitting group.

Speaking of getting ahead, I was really rolling on the AOGG K&RAL. I got thru the first 6 books with such joy & vigor. I remembered being like Anne - young with hair as red as carrots with my tongue hinged in the middle. [My 31st b'day came & I realized now I'm old with hair as red as carrots with my tongue hinged in the middle.] I cried with delight when Anne & Gilbert got married & had babies. Now I'm on book #7 Rainbow Valley - I keep falling asleep trying to read and/or listen. I'm just finding it difficult to get thru it & I feel guilty about it. I feel so loyal to Anne & I want to care about her children's many (many) adventures. I do perk up a bit when the characters are knitting, but then I fall into the depths of despair when the author doesn't elaborate on the project. It's definitely been a different experience to read the books as an adult & I've cherished the experience despite the hardships.

I've started an ongoing project called "Labyrinth Circle Rug" from One Skein. The pattern calls for various colors of worsted weight yarns. I'm using my "leftovers"...doubling the yarn when appropriate. It's fun to go thru yarns & recall my (many) succesess and (few) failures over the years and it seems appropriate to make a labyrinth logging the many twists and turns of my occupation as a amateur knitter.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

The Ketchup Song

Ravelry has encouraged my OCD like no other thing could. It drives me crazy that I don't have pictures of every FO I've ever made as well as current photos of my WIPs. Each time I log in, I know the project page is gonna come up and I'm gonna see BIG WHITE SQUARES taunting no featured photo. So, I've been stalking everyone for whom I've ever knitted anything. People all over the country are getting weekly reminders that I was nice enough to knit something for them and I'd appreciate a photo in return. This may seem a bit rude but, since I only knit for those I really love, they seem to love and understand me enough to get past the rude part & GET ME A PICTURE! To those individuals who've fulfilled their obligation, I salute you by posting your picture:


Striped Baby Blanket (my pattern; Dale of Norway Baby Ull)

Knitted Blocks (Knitting to Go; scrap yarn)

Dishcloth Baby Blanket (Moma's pattern; Velvet Touch)

Mal's Grandmother
Knitted Elephant (Last Minute Knitted Gifts; random stash yarn)

To those who haven't yet provided a picture: I'll be in touch:)


About a month ago, abehap organized a "Carrot Top KAL" for the Redheads ravelry group. The plan was to knit something green during the months of November & December since redheads look so handsome in green. Although it sounded fun, I opted out since I didn't have any shade of green yarn in the stash nor any plans to make anything green anytime soon. Since then......I've made these:

Peekaboo Mittens from Magknits

and these:Snuggles Fingerless Gloves

and now I'm working on this:

Chaos from Knitty

Knitting conspiracy or just a fluke???

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Fast Lane

There's just nothing like knitting a garment I can actually wear. After the great success of Lift and Separate, I was excited to move on to More Stripes. Although I despise Noro yarns in general, the pattern called for Silk Garden & Moma just happened to have 8 skeins of 2 different perfectly acceptable colorways that were perfectly loverly. A fast, fun challenging knit ensued -made more exciting by the stEEKing involved. This is a technique I've wanted to try since Yarn Harlot wondered at its mysteriousness.

I completed the back & the front in one piece each then had to wait around in anticipation while I searched out a sewing machine. Moma was kind enough to being one along to meet me on a recent trip down south. After a couple of quick turns, I had the stitches I needed to move along my merry way. I had to wait on the rest until I got home...
That Monday loomed ahead of me. I was both terrified and excited. I located my sharpest sewing scissors and got into position. Then, I started to cut...

It was thrilling to cut into the dense knitted material. I sat agog with disbelief that the stEEKing was actually working - the material really wasn't unraveling!! What an amazing tehnique!

Finishing was quite speedy as well and I had a wearable sweater vest in practically no time.

Asleep at the Wheel

I came across someone's blog the other day (so sorry, can't remember whose) wherein the blogger referred to her hibernating projects. I like that term ever so much more than WIPs or UFOs - terms which some might infer as "I should feel guilty that the poor little project sits untouched & unloved in a dark corner closet collecting dust just hoping a kind soul will come along and help it fulfill its dream of becoming a FO." Instead, it's just hibernatin'...taking a well-deserved rest or a even a sabbatical so both the project & I can reflect on what its true destiny might be. Perhaps it was originally intended to move on to a little boy in Memphis but somehow Memphis lost its appeal (or said boy moved to L.A. where one wouldn't need a warm sweater).

Here's one project that's come out of hibernation. It's Sirdar's Tiny Tots #1560 Sweater and the yarn is Rowan Cashsoft DK. Although its final destination isn't quite clear, it's certainly enjoying the journey made more felicitous after a good year's sabbatical.

Rhapsody in Blue

One of the many things I've learned from Ravelry is that there's an underlying cult of redheaded knitters evidenced by the development of the Redheads group early on. (There still aren't blonde or brunette groups.) Discussions range from properly choosing yarn color appropriate for a redhead- almost never yellow - and whether or not we're in danger of extinction.

Then there's the Anne of Green Gables group dedicated to "all things Anne" which doesn't assert that members must be redheads but I've noticed most are thusly endowed. Dialogue includes WWAK (What Would Anne Knit) and the AGG R&KAL in which I'm currently ensconced. [Note: The RAL has spurred the employment of grand, flowery words into my vocabulary. Here's a thesaurus.] The idea of the R&KAL was to knit what Anne might knit or wear at the least. The beauty of an online group is that no one is around to gaze at me with disdain when they discover that I'm listening along and knitting projects Anne would never wear. That said, in typical Anne fashion, I am frequently bowled over by the multitude of exquisite and interesting projects I want to knit which is why I'm trying my best to stick to my current queue.
Here's one such finished garment:
The pattern is Childhood - it knit up so fast and so fun. The yarn is Laines du Nord Baby Cover which was just delicious and is even machine washable. This was the first time I'd sewn on snaps, but they looked cute and sturdy after I'd finished.
Although the bear relished wearing Childhood for a brief time, the lucky recipient is my almost-niece Audrey. I've requested the garment be worn to death and I shudder with joy each time I picture Miss Audrey on the playground staying warm & toasty in her striped hooded cardigan during a rousing game of Red Rover.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

The Sounds of Silence

Knitting blogs (including mine) are eerily quiet. Knitting needles have stopped clacking all over the world. Where have all the knitters gone???

They're at a BIG 'OL PARTY called RAVELRY!!

I was lucky enough to receive my invitation several weeks ago. So far, I've added my complete knitting library as well as my inventory of needles and photos of my stash. Then I went thru my knitting scrapbooks and added info on some of my completed projects as well. THEN, I started joining groups. The Pug Lovers group, the Heros group, the Grey's Anatomy group, the Baby cakes group, the....hmmmm maybe these groups are a bit out of control....anyway, then I started adding projects to my queue and I have quite enough to last for a while. It's just been so much fun - I've barely had time to knit - or work.

I'm a bit of a ravelry-aholic (there's a group for that too!!). I had to establish some rules. So: 1. No ravelry while I'm on the subway - I'll knit instead. (Of course, I don't have a computer on the subway anyway so...). Ok -that's the only rule. Still, ya gotta start somewhere.

Now, I have to get back to the mean work.

Friday, September 14, 2007


While on vacay, I got the chance to attend Moma's knitting group at the Lawrence County Public Library. They are involved in the most s'wonderful program called Guideposts Knit for Kids. Their goal is that each knitter will complete one sweater for the program. One knitter had finished 2.75 sweaters in just a couple of weeks!! Moma even finished hers during the meeting. (This may have been the first time I've witnessed Moma actually finishing a knitted item.) Here's a picture of just a few of the completed sweaters & there's Moma with her completely done even the ends woven in sweater. It was quite an impressive affair.

As a special added bonus, my Marijke sleeveless pullover made a surprise appearance at the group so I could snap a shot. I finished this little number about this time last year and I think it looks just fab-u-lous on its recipient.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Wouldn't It Be Loverly

All I want is a room somewhere,
Far away from work and care.
With one enormous chair,
Aow, wouldn't it be loverly?

Lots of fiber for me to pet,
Lots of yarn for me to get.
Sweaters & socks for us to knit,
Aow, wouldn't it be loverly?

My vacation was simply loverly. I got quite a lot of knitting done & made a few acquisitions. I picked up a few things at Shai's & a few things at Threaded Bliss and a few things at Angel Hair and my suitcase had a few too many things, but it was well worth it. I can hardly wait for the cold, rainy autumn days just made for watching old movies & knittting. Here are some of my acquisitions for your viewing pleasure:

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Best of Me

I was thinking a little too much this morning (pre-coffee) and it suddenly dawned on me why knitting is my niche - genetics. For me, knitting requires the best traits that I inherited from each of my parents.

Moma is creative - some might call her crafty. Ever since I've known her (pretty much my whole life), she's been good at all things home economic-y -- sewing, cooking, embroidery, home decor, art, smocking, gardening and knitting.
My daddy gets the job done. No matter what it is or in what order it was left, if it needs be finished up, my daddy can do it.

For a while, there was doubt that I was Moma's daughter - except for that whole she gave birth to me thing. When I'm not burning Rice Krispie treats or killing cacti, I'm also not sewing a straight line or perusing paint colors. It's not that Moma didn't try, it's just that my talents do not lie in those areas. Then along came knitting -finally Moma could see a little her in me not to mention that she had a new partner in fiber crime.
There's never been any doubt that I am my daddy's daughter. Whenever anyone in my family is annoyed with me, they blame my paternal heritage. I accept it as a compliment.

Knitting is truly the optimum use of my best traits. Now I think my traits & I shall go back to getting it done in a most crafty way.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Miss You Much

I haven't knitted a stitch in 14.5 days. I'm antsy & my hands itch & it feels like I'm missing something. I wake up in the middle of the night knowing that I've forgotten something...then realize it's the knitting...

Ok, so I'm not really waking up in the middle of the night, but it definitely feels like something's missing from my life. Two parts of my psyche are fighting a bitter battle. There's my need to organize & clean my new apartment and then there's my yearning for wool. Luckily, a reprieve is in sight. I'm vacationing all next week & it's the kind of vacation where I'm not expected to go or do or see. ...Knitting and catching up on daytime tv for a whole week! I have a special project in mind as I'll have access to my Moma's sewing machine - STEEKING! I'm delighted & petrified. Maybe I need a little project first though, so I don't get too overexcited...kind of like a knitting appetizer. I'm considering the Baby Bolero from One Skein as I have one skein of Mission 1824 Wool burning a whole in my stash. It might be just the thing to wet my appetite.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

(W)Rapper's Delight

This yarn was simply delicious crawling across my fingers and the clapotis pattern was a delight to follow. Like reading a short story, parts were familiar and some pieces surprised me. And that's all I'm gonna say about it.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Wishin' and Hopin'

Looking for an apartment in NYC is like trying to find someone who doesn't think Britney Spears is crazy. You might find one guy but, chances are, that guy is a little bit nuts himself. I stumbled upon my own minor lunacy today during a chat with Moma and realized my knitting affair has even infiltrated my apartment hunt. On the inside, I've pondered where I'll put the cedar chest which houses my stash & current project(s), as well as how the light from the windows will affect my hobby. On the outside, I've considered the proximity of yarn stores and whether the commute will allow ample knitting time.
Is that crazy? (rhetorical question) I don't think so - it's just being conscientious. It's being a smart shopper. Of course, maybe Britney doesn't think she's crazy either.

Friday, July 27, 2007

You're So Vain

I haven't had time to post because I've been shamelessly showing off my new sweater and accepting all sorts of compliments on it. Everyone's acted so amazed that I knit is myself and that it's my first one and how wonderful am I. I like to impress people. I was always good at "Show & Tell".

On a less gloaty note, Moma came up for a short trip last weekend. The weather tried to interfere, but we were not daunted. We still made it to 4 yarn stores in 2 days. On Friday, we headed uptown to String to check out their ample supply of cashmere & silk. Everyone was cheerful and I'd go again just to check out their samples - just the cutest little sweaters & coats - all original patterns. After that, we headed over to Knitty City. Their website says they are "one of the friendliest knitting stores in New York City" and that they "have the best and most up-to-date knitting books on the market." I agree that they were very friendly and that they had LOTS of knitting books. They have so many knitting books that even Moma found some she didn't already own. The store itself was a bit overwhelming with all the books and all the yarn just a bit all over the place.

On Saturday we hopped over to The Point. I had a 25% off coupon burning a hole in my pocket & had finally decided to try Clapotis (apparently pronounced clap-o-tea...who knew!). I love The Point. I love that they are open late and that everyone is so helpful. Most of the yarn subs were a bit out of the price range I'd set even with that coupon, but one helpful person suggested a bamboo yarn from Southwest Trading Company in a color called Midori. As luck would have it 1. I've been wanting to try bamboo yarn for quite some time now 2. It fit perfectly into my price range 3. Even the name of the color perfectly evokes the surprise recipient of this piece. So, Clapotis went on the needles that night and I hope to finish by next weekend.

Our last yarn related stop was Brooklyn General. It's just the cutest little shop all nestled in Carroll Gardens...all very well organized.

Moma says there are 26 yarn stores in NYC and we only have 18 to go.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Whomp! There It Is

I've finished the back. I've finished both fronts. I've finished the ties. I've finished the finishing.
I'm so excited to have completed my first adult sweater - and it's for me. Now, I can throw away the dirty, slightly ratty store-bought thing in my office and show off my very own artwork.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Hope to Carry On

Sometimes you just need a small project to rekindle the love you first felt for knitting.

Lately, I've been feeling bitter and angry...I've started to hate my sweater. I try to think about the 100% alpaca...the softness, the silkiness. Then my mind comes back to the neverending border and all those ends to weave in and the fact that I still need a tie...

Anyway, I finished a little project (Saturday Market Bag) & it's rejuvenated me a bit. Maybe I'll be able to wear my sweater one day.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007


I've been ashamed. And embarrassed. And feeling guilty.

I've made judgements. I looked down on others. I didn't think it could happen to me. I didn't understand. Now, I do.


Whew...I've finally said it. They say that admitting you have a problem is the first step.

It all started with just putting the sweater away for a day or 2. "I'm tired," I said. I told my family & friends I was just busy. A day or 2 turned into a week...then 2 weeks. Then I had to go out of town. I told myself I'd be rejuvenated when I returned and then it would only take a couple of days to finish. Since then, it's been the same old story. I just couldn't help myself. And now it's been almost a month and it's still not finished.

My name is Loo and I've been unable to finish my sweater.

As of today, I'm on the wagon. I will finish it....ONE STITCH AT A TIME.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Bust a Move

This weekend's projects are part of a whole bigger stash busting endeavor. I keep my small stash, UFOs & other knitting provisions in a cedar chest & I hope to have it mostly empty by the end of the year. I must admit that this is when it's advantageous to have several friends having several babies. Babies don't take much yarn. Here's the stash I hope to use up this weekend:

Friday, May 25, 2007

Love You Til Tuesday

Ahhhhhh....I love the beginning of a long weekend. (Since I got to leave work a bit early,) I get a whole extra day and a half to get things done around the house like yardwork and general cleaning...and knitting. I've got several things on the agenda for this weekend:

  • finish 2nd sleeve of cardigan (completed a/o 5/26 11:42P
  • put together "Lift and Separate" cardigan (blocking a/o 5/26 11:54P)
  • knit a couple of change purses for some friends
  • knit 3 blocks for a friend's baby
  • knit a purse with fringe with friend's 2 yr old (completed a/o 5/28 1:56P)
  • wash dishes (completed a/o 5/26 2:03P)
  • weed-eat the yard (completed a/o 5/26 6:48P)
  • clean the air conditioner (completed a/o 5/26 2:58P)

Huh...just realized how far down the list yardwork is...makes me wonder whether I'll get to that...

In other news: Today I realized I can knit while standing on the subway. I'm so excited about it. I'm always so bummed when I don't get a seat because I can't knit. Now if I can just figure out how to knit while doing the dishes....

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

How Long

I never realized I have such long arms.

I always thought my arms were proportional to my body, but then, I guess arm length doesn't really impact your life so much....until you have to knit sleeves. This pattern starts at the cuff, has some simple increasing, then suggests you knit in stockinette to your underarm before you get to the next bit. Well, I'm telling you now that it's an inordinately long way from my wrist to my underarm.

I've started to consider 3/4 length sleeves for this sweater. I suppose some people would consider that a cop-out. I think it's creative problem-solving.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Mama Tried

Ode to My Moma

Please allow me a minute on this special occassion
to honour My Moma
who deserves celebration.

My Moma is young and cool and fun,
loving and generous,
crafting handmade gifts for everyone.

She taught me to knit; the reason I rhyme
She passed on her talent
My Moma gave me her time.

When I couldn't remember how to knit one square inch,
it was due to her teaching
that relearning was a cinch.

I knit her some socks in order to say
I love you
on this My Moma's 30th Mother's Day.

Monday, April 23, 2007

L - O - V - E

L is for the way it feels to me
O is for the only yarn I see
V is very, very made from alpaca-hairy
E is even more than anything that I've knit before...

I L-O-V-E this yarn. It's Prime Alpaca and every time I pull out this project, I put it against my face and just *sigh*.

I guess that's good because I think I'm going to be knitting this sweater for the rest of my life.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Tisket, A Tasket

A Green & Yellow Basket...

Isn't my little guinea pig cute with his Easter Basket?

Monday, April 16, 2007

With a Little Help from My Friends

It takes a strong person to admit they need help. A few months before my pregnant knitter friend's due date, she called to ask for help. She'd purchased several skeins of a yarn she LOVED to make a blanket for her baby. Now that she was well into her pregnancy, she realized she was running out of time and would likely never finish it and would I please help her. Of course, I accepted the task. It sounded so easy....the main component was a garter stitch piece all in one color....then an easy border in a contrasting color...
Just after I accepted this task, new babies starting coming at me from all directions, so it was many hats & bootees later when I sat down to start working out this particular project. In fact, the recipient of the blanket had already left the womb by this point. As I am adamantly against gauge swatching, I just determined what my gauge should be based on the yarn's label & then how many stitches I should cast on to assure I'd get a perfect square, all the while thinking that, should it not turn out so perfect, it's only a blanket. Well, "it's only a blanket" quickly became "it's only a scarf." At the end of skein 1 of 4, I realized I was getting a BIG 'OL RECTANGLE that was not at all acceptable or recognizable as a baby blanket.
I was lamenting to my Moma about such things and she suggested that I use her handy-dandy dishcloth pattern. That way, I could increase for 2 skeins & decrease for 2 skeins & was sure to get a square. The next part went rather quickly for a BIG 'OL SQUARE of GARTER stitch. Happily, the FO was indeed recognizable as a baby blanket. But there sat the skein of contrasting color staring me in the face... My friend was so excited about the contrasting border, that I had to complete that part. I mean, who wants to disappoint a hormonal new mother?!
Since I'm as anti-crochet as I am anti-gauge swatch, I combed thru my knitting manuals to find an acceptable knitted border. First I picked up every other stitch around the blanket. I tried a simple rib stitch. It looked terrible. I tried a simple garter stitch. It looked awful. I was desparate, so I turned to *gasp* the directions for crochet. I learned that I am really bad at crochet & that it's harder than it looks. It was time for me to ask for HELP!
Moma came to the rescue again. An accomplished knitter and crocheter, she volunteered to complete the border. And she did. Beautifully.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Friday, April 06, 2007

Baby Mine

My new godson is also my new guinea pig. He gets the stuff I'm dying to make, but for which I may not have a recipient. He also gets stuff I'm not too sure about....which is where this blanket comes in. I was dying to make this blanket (aka my slightly complicated cable commission), but wasn't altogether pleased with the picked up stitches for the border. I LOVE the cable pattern in the middle & the general idea of the blanket, though.

I used the Endora pattern from Berroco and Berroco's Lullaby & Plush as called for. Both yarns have great texture and is very snuggly for a baby, but the Lullaby has so much stretch that I found it difficult to pick up the stitches for the border. It was definitely holey around the sides.

I made the bootees & hat as well - just using up some stash yarn.

Friday, March 30, 2007

It Takes Two

Well, it seems that I may knit a tad differently now that I did a year ago. So, I've decided to start a new trend. Since everyone has a slightly bigger foot, I've provided a slightly bigger sock for the slightly bigger foot of the recipient of this slightly mismatched pair.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007


I hate knitting socks. I hate it because of the "REproduction factor." You finish the first sock & the sun starts to shine, birds sing, the Hallelujah Chorus plays in your head...and are FORCED to knit exactly the same object with exactly the same yarn and exactly the same needles all over again. REproduction of the sock is exacerbated by the fact that you knit sock #1 about a year ago & are now expected to remember any changes you may have made since you didn't write them down, of course. I hate knitting socks.