Saturday, March 28, 2015

Bamboozled!


I found this beautiful hank of yarn at my local knit shop on Thursday. The yarn is thick and thin and is called "Bamboozle" by King Cole.  The color way is Heathers. This is the only color way they had at the shop. I would like to see this yarn in other colors, but I really like the shades of lavender in Heathers. 

I am making a cowl. I cast on 120 stitches on US size 9 needles. 

I need to stop casting on new projects. The way it is now, I feel as if I never finish anything. 

Happy Knitting!

Friday, March 6, 2015

Reveal: Yarn Bowls are Done






The yarn bowls are done. The owner of Hobby Hut Ceramics took these photos and I am so glad she did. Many of the bowls were already picked up by the time I got to the shop so I was glad to see everyone's completed projects. 



Here are my bowls.  

Yarn Bowl #1 
Before...



And after...



For yarn bowl #1, I used a glaze called Hot Tamale for the first two layers. The third and final layer had little flecks of white in it.
 

Yarn Bowl #2
Before...
 

And after...
 
 
For yarn bowl #2, I used a glaze called Candy Apple Red on the bottom and on the inside of the bowl. The outside of the bowl is a glaze called Peppermint Twist and it had big chunks of "crystals" which burst when the bowl was fired, giving the bowl a great colorful, mottled, almost drippy look.
 
 
I always assumed the holes in the yarn bowl were for yarn, although I prefer to use the "J-shaped" portion for my yarn. The ceramics shop owner, Teri, told me the holes drilled in the bowl is for knitting needles.  Duh!


Sunday, March 1, 2015

Watermelon Head


Knit Picks Stroll Hand-Painted Fingering Weight yarn in the Watermelon color way.

Sometimes I just don't know what I had in mind when I pick out some of the yarn I purchase.  This is yarn I bought on line; if I would have seen it in person, I probably would not have purchased it. The colors are less vibrant than I expected. This yarn is Knit Picks Stroll Hand-Dyed in the "Watermelon" color way.  I actually tried the yarn out in a sock pattern and maybe a scarf pattern as well, but I wasn't satisfied.  This yarn is in my stash and it kept bothering me, so I did a Ravelry search for some inspiration.

A cool function on Ravely is that you can select the "yarn" tab at the top of the screen. Type in the yarn you have and see what other folks have made from the very same yarn. Fun, right!?  So when I entered in Knit Picks Stroll Hand-Dyed, I saw that a number of folks used this yarn for a hat called "Sockhead". This is a pattern I've made one time before and I am curious to see how the yarn pools using this hand-dyed yarn.

Like I said, I knit this pattern once before.  I also used Knit Picks striping yarn for his hat.  Here it is:




Today is a rare, super rainy day in Colorado. Great weather for knitting!

Yarn Bowls

 
Yarn Bowl #1 (front view)
 
I made a yarn bowl at a local ceramics shop last year.  The place is called Hobby Hut Ceramics.  My friend, Mrs. W, paints ceramics there a lot and I have been gifted many great things she's made for me at Hobby Hut.  A few other knitter friends got wind of yarn bowls being available at Hobby Hut and were interested, so Mrs. W helped coordinate a Yarn Bowl Day at the ceramics shop.  It was held yesterday.  Turned out a lot of the folks who painted yarn bowls yesterday are folks I also know from my local yarn shop. It was fun to see them and work on a different craft as we chatted away.
 
 
Yarn Bowl #1 (inside view)
 
I ended up painting two yarn bowls. I learned that there is some lag time between layers of glaze when I painted my first yarn bowl a number of months ago, so it was nice to have two projects to work on yesterday.  From the photos above, you cannot tell what the colors will be and I'll keep that a surprise.  When you pick out the finishes or glazes, you get to see what the glaze should look like, but you are only looking a 1" x 1" tile square. It's like looking at paint samples on cardboard strips at your local hardware store.  You just don't know what it's going to look like until you see it on a larger scale.  So I have an idea what I THINK my bowls will look like, but it will be exciting to go pick up the yarn bowls at the shop after they've been fired.  It must be really fun for the shop's owner, Teri, every time she opens up the kiln after a firing.
 
 
Yarn Bowl #2 (front view)
 
For now, I won't give out any clues as to how I think the bowls will look.  It will be really fun in a week or so, after I pick up the bowls, to show side by side BEFORE and AFTER photos.  For now the bowls have to completely dry before they can be fired.






I'll keep you posted!

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Traffic Island Socks


Traffic Island Socks




Things are zigging and zagging at my house. I love this pattern. The pattern designer says she called the design Traffic Island because the design reminded her of playing the video game "Frogger" where the player helps the frog safely cross two sets of highways and two sets of waterways, using the traffic islands in between as breathing places, safe from cars, trucks, snakes, alligators, and submerging turtles. 

I used to play Frogger many moons ago and I don't really see it, but the colors in the yarn I am using kind of remind me of frogs a bit. The yarn is Knit Picks Felici in the Acquarium colorway. This is the perfect pattern for self-striping yarn and it's a super fun knit!  You'll have the pattern row memorized in a jiffy if you give this pattern a try. 

I am knitting these socks two at a time in two sets of dpns (2.25 mm). This pattern would be a great Magic Loop pattern, a technique I recently learned (but am far from mastering). 

Happy Knitting!

Friday, February 27, 2015

Colorado Weather


February 20, 2015

I took this photo a week ago on Friday. We had taken the dogs for a walk and then put them in the backyard to play since it was so nice out. I ran to the store for groceries and got fried chicken and fresh bagels in the deli section for our lunch.  This has become a nearly weekly ritual with the dogs; some weeks we eat outside under the pergola and then we hurry indoors as its too cold to linger. But last week, we enjoyed staying outside for a bit. It was so nice out. In the photo above, I am reclined in the chair and Brutus is lying on my lap. Sweet boy. 

Then it started snowing on Saturday and it's been very snowy ever since. We did get a break from additional snow on Tuesday and Wednesday, but it's been snowing on and off since Thursday. 



February 27, 2015

No picnic under the pergola today. 



The big, overgrown evergreen in the front of the house is rather droopy. 




I love the brilliant blue sky peeking through the pergola. 



And even more, I like the shadows the snow covered pergola makes. 

In Colorado, there is a saying about the weather:  "If you don't like the weather,,, just wait 15 minutes. It will change!"

Top This! Hat Knitting Kit





Check out those cute hats!
 
This is a fun novelty yarn called "Top This" by the company called DMC.  My local yarn shop just had one version in the shop so I bought one "kit".  The kit is a single ball of yarn and a hat topper.  The ball of yarn is wound continuously but the yarn changes from one type of yarn to the next with no knots or breaks in yarn.  You just cast on and knit.  The pattern on the label calls for US Size 9 circular needles (16 inch) and you can make a child size or an adult small size.  For the larger size, you just cast on more stitches and knit more rounds. 



Pretty cute, right?  I made the adult small. It knit up very quickly on US Size 9 needles. The yellow yarn feels like chenille. 
 

I love the topper. It can be easily removed for laundering. 



I took all these photos at the knit shop this past Saturday. Marilyn tried it on and we thought it matched her beautiful shawl quite nicely!
 
The one problem I had with this project was my fear I would run out of yarn knitting the larger size.  When I got to the point in the pattern where I began the decreases for the top portion of the hat, I noticed the pattern said to complete decreases EVERY row.  In most hat patterns I've knit, you complete decreases on one round and then you just knit the next round with no decreases. This results in the hat being a bit longer and the hat tapering in at the top a bit more gently.  As I was knitting,I kept looking at my remaining yarn, concerned I would run out. I did knit a few rounds in the decrease portion with no decreases. Turns out I had PLENTY of yarn left over.  If I were to knit a hat with one of these kids in the future. I would definitely knit one round with no decreases after EACH round WITH decreases for a hat which would be a tad longer.

I found a few more versions on the Internet.  I love the giraffe and the unicorn a lot, but I really want a puppy hat for me!