Monthly Archives: January 2013

Watcha Doin’ Wednesday 2 & 3

Last Wednesday I had a wonderful time at my once a month Bunco club, so I neglected to update my progress. So while it may seem like I have made great progress this week, keep in mind it was 2 weeks, so eh, maybe I didn’t get that much done 🙂

Nancy's throw strip details
First and foremost the throw for my girlfriend’s birthday on Feb 1 is over 1/2 done. 23 of the 35 squares are complete and 3 strips of 5 are together. That is obviously my focus until completion because it has to be done a week from Saturday. I am pleased with my progress. Oddly enough, one of the pictures for this project looks way more purple than the true wine color of the yarn. The pic with the 3 strips on the table are much more the actual color, but I included the other one to show the detail of the stitches

Nancy's throw strips

Next, I worked on my helix scarf and think it is coming along nicely if I do say so myself. 

hanging buffalo

And finally I finished the seed stitch square for the Master’s Program.

Master's Swatch #3 Seed Stitch

Hopefully next week you’ll see the completed throw.

 

2 Comments

Filed under Crocheting, Knitting, TKGA Master's Program, Uncategorized

Masters Monday #3

I made my first swatch for the TKGA Master’s program this weekend. I chose to make swatch number 3 first because, quite frankly, it is the easiest one. It is a small, 4.5 inch seed stitch swatch. I am familiar with the stitch, have used it many times to edge washcloths and cuff hats. But I’ve never had a knitting expert examine my stitches before, so that made me knit a little slower than usual to make sure each stitch was as close to perfect as possible.

I am using the required worsted weight yarn in a cream color. I purchased it from Unwind Yarn House (http://unwindyarnhouse.com/). They were at Stitches Midwest, and I liked the feel of their yarns. The kind I purchased is Timothy Street, and has wonderful definition. Each stitch can be seen, which exactly suits my needs for this project.

Debbie's washcloth

The edging of this washcloth I made last Christmas is seed stitch, which keeps it from rolling. Seed stitch may be an easy stitch, but I thought I’d learn a bit more about its origins if I could. Thanks to the internet, anything can be found. My first stop was http://knitting.about.com/od/stitchglossary/g/seedstitch.htm. Here I found out that it is made by working multiples of 2 stitches. Either an odd number of stitches in each row, working k1, p1 for each row (this was the requirement of my swatch) or alternate even number of stitch rows k1, p1 and p1, k1. Most knitters know this already. 

What I didn’t know was it is also called the “British or Irish Moss Stitch”. The Tricksy Knitter website (http://www.tricksyknitter.com/knitting-stitches/irish-moss-stitch-634) also calls it the rice stitch.

The dense fabric this stitch creates (no matter what you call it) is very useful, but apparently it isn’t that interesting because every site basically said the same thing.

I’m glad the questions that have to be answered aren’t about the history or uniqueness of the seed, moss or rice stitch.

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Knitting, Knitting Techniques, TKGA Master's Program

Master Monday #2

This week I read through the questions for the TKGA Hand Knitting Master’s Program Level 1 to see what I need to be looking for to answer them fully as I make progress on the program this year.

Question 1 has you look at the yarn band to collect information to determine gauge, and various other info. My yarn band gave me less information than many others I’ve used. It read: “Worsted, Afghan, Aran; 16-20 stitches per inch on 4.5 – 5.5 mm needles”.

This was a short story  compared to the sagas on some bands. Sometimes you learn when and where the fibers were collected, washing instructions in several languages and pictures and in once case the name of the alpaca whose haircut allowed me to knit. (pic from google images: u-knittedamiras.blogspot.com)

I’ve downloaded the “Standard Yarn Wt System” to give me all the info I needed to reference regarding yarns. I’ve been knitting for over 40 years and learned new things reading the info on their the Craft Yarn Council website.  http://www.craftyarncouncil.com/weight.html

They have advice, answers and classes for new knitters and crocheters and seasoned veterans. You get discounts on classes they offer with your TKGA membership.

So I’ve bookmarked the site on my computer for reference during and after the Master’s.

I am going to make swatch #1 this week and answer the associated questions. I’ll let you know how it goes on Monday.

Meantime, I had to share the coolest yarn holder my son bought me for Christmas this year. He was with his wife at a craft show and saw these handmade yarn bowls, thought of me and now I think of him every evening when I knit or crochet after dinner 🙂

yarn pot

Leave a comment

Filed under Crafts, Crocheting, Knitting Techniques, TKGA Master's Program, Uncategorized

Whatcha doin’ Wednesday #1

To keep myself on task a weekly report on my 2013 projects seemed like a good idea. I was going to call these posts WIP Wednesdays but that seemed too ordinary. So Whatcha doin seemed to be more in order.

This week has been productive project week for me. I haven’t taken pictures of the two projects I am working on except this one of the first square for the Spiral Fan Throw I am making for my girlfriend’s birthday.

Fan throw first square

So far I’ve completed 14 of the 35 squares and have them in two strips of 7. I only have 3 more strips and the edging to complete, so feel fairly confident that this project will be completed in time for her birthday. I’m using Brava Worsted from Knit Picks in Wine. I really love the feel of this yarn and the way it works up. It is soft and feels as though it will be really warm and cozy.

My knitting project is a helix scarf I am making for myself out of the bison yarn I purchased at Stitches Midwest. I was encouraged to start this project first by my friend. She was with me when I purchased the yarn and was anxious to see how it would work up. It has the feel of cotton even though  it is 90% super was merino and 10% American Bison. Fun yarn from Stitches

It is the hot pink and black hank in this picture of all of the yarns that I purchased at Stitches. As a sidebar – I have used almost all of the yarn pictured here. The blue and orange is now a scarf made for my son’s girlfriend. Go Bears!! The two at the top – the brown and beige variegated –  are now a washcloth for my girlfriend for Christmas and several dishcloths for our kitchen. The only thing here that is still in my stash are the three little twists of bison yarn. They came with a pattern for cute little Christmas stockings. This is inspiring me to add those 3 little projects to my list of things to do for Christmas 2013.

How are your projects coming along this year? Have you jumped in with both feet? Are you planning your projects? Are you more of a free spirit and do what you do when you do it without a real plan of action? Just wondering what you are doing. 🙂

Leave a comment

Filed under Crafts, Crocheting, Knitting

Master Monday #1

All programs, degrees, certificates and other achievements have to begin at the beginning. That is what I have done with The Knitting Guild of American’s Master Hand Knitter’s Program Level 1. Actually, my beginning began last year when I downloaded the instructions and bought the yarn. I was rather unorganized and not surprisingly let life get in the way of completion.

This year I requested and received the updated instructions and reread them to freshen up my memory. I am taking this program slow and steady and hopefully to completion this year. So far, I’ve read said instructions and wound the yarn. I know it doesn’t sound like much, but we are only 7 days into the new year and it is further than I was last year. LOL

I’ve decided to update my progress every Monday. Hence the name of this post. By #52 I have the highest hopes of saying my notebook was sent to the committee for consideration. Come along with my craziness and we’ll see where it leads.

Leave a comment

Filed under Knitting, Knitting Techniques, TKGA Master's Program

Setting Goals for 2013

Happy New Year to one and all!

I am not one to make New Years resolutions. Instead I prefer to set goals for myself. These can be lofty, wishful and/or hopeful, but it gives me something to strive for in the upcoming year. This year I have a list of projects I want to complete, some of them are roll overs from last year, these goals are the mean stepsisters of resolutions past.

Since I am sharing them with all of you, any of you, some of you…maybe more of them will be completed this year. I’ll circle back to this post in late December and assess my progress or lack thereof.

I’ll start with my writing goals:

1) Publish at least 4 blog entries each week starting now (I know, already 5 days into the new year) either on this blog or my writing blog (inmywords.wordpress.com) – this will keep me motivated to write, write, write. I write in my head all of the time, getting these words to paper is a long and laborious task.

2) I will get at least one story, book, article or essay published this year. I know one doesn’t sound like a very lofty goal, but if you are a writer, you’ll be shaking your head muttering “Good luck with that, ha ha ha”. Getting published is very, very difficult but wonderful when it happens.

Knitting and Crocheting goals:

1) I will attempt to complete the Knitting Guild of American’s hand knit masters’s program this year. I’ve already downloaded the new instructions (they change slightly each year) and will make Monday’s blog entry an update day. Master’s Mondays will start to appear the first Monday of January.

2) I will complete the Fan Throw I began working on Jan 1 for my girlfriend’s birthday on February 1. Originally I was going to make her a shawl, but decided on a throw instead.  Fan throw first square

3) Left over projects on my 2012 goal list need to be completed. Namely the alpaca hat and buffalo mittens (which may change to a helix scarf because I would wear that way more than mittens). I would be remiss if I left off the third pair of socks that I didn’t complete last year. I have issues making things for myself. They always get pushed to the end of my lists of things to do. All three of these projects are for me, so hopefully I’ll get them done and you won’t see them on my list of goals for 2014.

4) Two baby blankets must be completed by April for the little boy that is due.

5) Assorted Christmas projects. I am not sure yet what Christmas projects I want to tackle. One will most likely be an afghan or throw for my cousin. The problem I see is I have 2 cousins so should make them each one this year. This makes the goal even a bit crazier, but what the heck, this is January and I’ve ordered the yarn for one of them already.

Now that my goals are on cyber paper, it brings life to the list. I’ll keep you all posted which will keep me on task.

Here’s to a great 2013 to all of you. May all of your goals be completed. Reach for them – the whole year is ahead of you. Live it to the fullest and have lots of laughter and fun while enjoying it.

2 Comments

Filed under Children's Writer, Crocheting, Knitting, TKGA Master's Program, Writer & Book Reviewer