Tuesday, February 27, 2007


Get a bunch of knitting gals in a room together and there is bound to be silliness. Laughing, joking, sarcasm, and down right silliness. Here is an example of said silliness:

The reason this is such a bad blurry picture is because I was laughing way too hard to hold the camera still!

Last night I got together with Sarah, Jen, Coleen, Jolene and Erin for bit of knitting. We ate, we knitted, we shared stories and had a grand time!

In all seriousness - I am very lucky to have gotten to know such a great group of women. Thanks ladies!

Sarah made stitch markers for everyone too - aren't they cute?

I love the packaging - and the sheep stamp is just perfect.

While I was there last night - I worked more on my Central Park Hoodie. Over the weekend - I managed to finish the back, and now I'm not working on one of the front panels. I realized that I had somehow managed to put an extra row in every cable repeat in the back panel. I realized this because when I went to do the first cable on the front panel - it didn't look quite right. Why? When I pulled out the back to look at it and compare - I found that it didn't match! I went back and counted the rows in the cable chart and wouldn't you know it - I added a row (two actually - a knit and a purl row) to each repeat.

Well - I guess if I'm going to do the pattern wrong - I better be consistent! Because there is NO WAY I'm ripping out the entire back. I actually think I like it better the way I did it!

I also did some more spinning over the weekend. I worked on some of the silk roving Amie gave me. I am very proud of this yarn so far - it is much thinner and more consistent than my last batch.

I can't wait to spin some more! Even my hubby was interested in the spinning. (Which is more than I can say for his interest in my knitting!

Saturday, February 24, 2007


I went to my first spinning night on Friday! It was at Cloverhill yarn shop in Catonsville. I have always loved this shop for it's yarn and pleasant helpful staff and now I have one more reason to love it. Their spinning night was so much fun! I'm a newbie drop spindler and wanted to get more experience. I was commenting on this fact to Laura and Amie when they suggested I join them on their monthly spinning group. Spinning group?! I was so there. Sarah came too and I'm glad - 'cause we learned together and I also I knew I wouldn't be the only drop spindler there!

As it turns out there were two other drop spindlers there as well. Jen and another gal... (who's name I already forget). There of course were many other spinners there with actual wheels. And I got to try one! Yeah! Amie was kind enough to let Sarah and I have a go with her Lendrum. It was harder than I expected to get the wheel going at all and I also had trouble getting it to "eat the yarn" fast enough (sorry for the nontechnical terms in advance!). I also overspun and broke the yarn several times. But I did get a bit of a knack for it... kind of...eventually... maybe?

Sarah did MUCH better than I did and I don't think she broke the yarn once! Go Sarah!

Here are some of the gals at work:

I soon went back to my dropping - I mean drop spindling and spun enough single ply - that I wanted to give plying a try. In the end - I ended up with a good amount of yarn. I am quite happy with the result. I used some of the roving I dyed at Mama-E's dye class.

Sarah made the most awesome gift too - A spindle bag holder! I love it! Thanks Sarah!!

After spinning - Sarah and I had a delicious meal at Mango Grove... did you know they serve meat now too?

Anyway - after that I came home and gave my new yarn a bath -

and then hung it up to dry.

I don't know what I'll make with it yet - but I do love it

Friday, February 23, 2007

Yarn, jewelry and more!

I am sending out the prize package today for Knitty Mama. I hope she likes it :)

Here are all the goodies she will be receiveing for winning my Got Labels? contest:

My hand dyed "Dreamsicle" yarn, hand made stitch markers to match, a little purse to keep the stitch markers in (made by me), two funny farm animal erasers....

and some earrings to match - to wear with whatever you end up using the yarn for. Yes I made these too.

I had a crafty day yesterday - full of jewelry-making and sewing! Fun! I love making earrings - I tend to give most of them away to friends as gifts and usually make up a huge batch in one sitting. I think I made about 15 pairs of earrings and 5 sets of stitch markers yesterday. Jolene - I made some for your fund raiser too!

In knitting news - I have started the shoulder decreases in my Central Park Hoodie yesterday! I love this yarn soooo much! Did I already mention that like 50 times already! But really - I do. I got to knit on it a little bit today over my lunch break - a rare occurrence indeed!

Some other knitty gals and I went out for a fiber lunch. My co-worker - Giants Knitter and I met up with several knitters who work near us - Sheila, Kathy, Kathleen and their friend Theresa (?) - (I'm bad with names - sorry if this is wrong!!!) She is a crocheter - but we let her hang out with us anyway. They are all bloggless too - the shame!

Anyway - this makes my third visit to the new yarn shop in Hyattsville - the Tangeled Skein. I didn't buy a thing this time - but instead sat on one of their comfy couches and knit on my CPH. I have the store memorized at this point and gave directions from my perch. You want cotton yarn? - it's over there. Bamboo? - around the corner. Everyone was suitably impressed :)
I actually remembered my camera this time too - will wonders never cease!

This was my view from the couch:

We had a great time at Franklins too - Gotta love those onion rings!

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

And the winner is....

Congrats goes out to Knitty Mama!

She won a skein sock yarn hand dyed by me! She was chosen with my highly scientific process of me numbering everyone who added a comment and then asking Giants Knitter to pick a number between 1 and 15 :) She picked 12 and there we have it.

There will also be some other goodies in the package - but here's a look at the yarn.

I am calling this colorway "Dreamsicle" because it reminds me of those frosty treats I used to eat as a kid. (which I think were actually named Creamsicles - but we always called them Dreamsicles)

Man I could go for one now actually - it's always sweltering in my office!

In other news - I have been busily working on my Central Park Hoodie. I am more than halfway done with the back right now. Here are some pictures I took over the weekend - but I think I've done about 4 more repeats since these were taken.

I just love this yarn - it's working up very quickly and I am definitley not bored with it. The cables and the subtle variations in the yarn keep it interesting and fun.

I hope everyone has a great week - it's finally starting to warm up around here - so hopefully some of our ice will melt soon! I did wake up to the most beautiful sunrise this morning - I thought I'd share....

Friday, February 16, 2007

New yarn and a Contest!

I knit up a swatch using my new batch of Araucania Nature Wool Chunky. It is the most gorgeous golden color. It's color 123 if you want some for yourself. - It's on sale at WEBS too! Go get some!

I am definitely a huge fan of all the Aracania yarns. The colors are so rich and warm.

I am using their worsted weight wool on another sweater right now - but it's taking me forever and the miles upon miles of stockinette are less than thrilling. I've been lusting after the Central Park Hoodie for a very long time now and decided I would add some cables to my life.

This particular yarn is thicker than the yarn the pattern calls for - but I think that will be a nice break from knitting miles on size 6 needles.

Isn't it gorgeous!

This swatch is knit on size 10 needles. It's washed and blocked and oh so soft! I swear I can't stop touching it. I am head over heel in love :) Who needs Valentines day when you can have Araucania to love. It doesn't matter that I still can't really pronounce it's name.... It knows I love it for it's body ;)

Anyway - I hope to start the sweater soon and I'll definitley keep you posted.

And now - on to a new contest!

As I was throwing the latest yarn label from my beloved Araucania Wool into my "yarn label basket" - I realized that I have quite a collection! When I first started knitting - I didn't want to throw away the labels from the yarn. I mean - really - what if I needed more! I wouldn't remember what kind it was etc... so I started keeping them in this basket I got at MD Sheep and Wool.

I have been adding to it for about a year now - whenever I wind up a new ball of yarn - the label goes into the basket. I know some people keep knitting journals and paste the labels in there. Others may just throw the labels away. What do you do with them?

Tell me what you do with your yarn labels and if you keep them - post pics of them on your blog.

It's about time for another contest around here - so whoever writes to tell me what they do with their labels will be entered into a contest to win a fabulous prize.... a skein of my hand dyed yarn!!

Since it's Friday and many people may be home snuggling by the fire instead of reading blogs - I will give everyone until Tuesday Feb 20th at midnight to leave a comment. I'll pick a winner on Wednesday Feb 21st and announce it later that day.

Enter my "Got labels?" contest and maybe I'll find a new way to store mine!

Thursday, February 15, 2007

You're right!

Several people have commented that my "Froot Loops" socks look like the photo of the day I posted.... (I also spelled Froot loops wrong! - Check out the website - there are some games!)

This is one of my marbled pieces that I did.

I have to agree - the colors are amazingly similar to my socks.

But then again - so are these frooty babies!

Anyway - I guess I tend to stick to similar colors - I find myself going back to greens and blues again and again.

What colors do you keep going back to?

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Fruit Loop Socks

I finished my first hand painted socks!!

I have been trying to figure out what this sock yarn reminded me of when suddenly as I walking down the cereal isle - it hit me. They look just like Fruit Loops!!

What do you think?

Yarn: Mama E's C*eye*ber fiber undyed yarn - hand dyed by ME! in the Fruit Loops colorway :)
Needles: US2 DPNs
Pattern: Basic sock pattern

I also went to a new yarn shop last Friday. The Tangeled Skein in Hyattsville MD. Giantsknitter and I work about 5 miles from here and we thought what better way to spend a Friday afternoon than ditching out of work early and going yarn shopping!! So we headed over. It was so awesome! Here is a very bad picture from my camera phone:

If you live in Maryland - I definitely suggest that you stop by. The owner was so sweet and took us on a tour of the shop and pointed out some new brands of yarn and even showed us some of her favorite patterns to go with the yarns we commented on. The space is amazing - lovely hardwood floors and rows of storage for the TONS-O-YARN. I mean this place is packed to the gills with yarn. I was in awe.

I managed to control myself - (sort of) and only bought a few things. I got one skein of Donegal Tweed that I have been lusting after:

and two skeins of the most gorgeous hand painted yarn from Araucania - Atacama Nature Alpaca.

Loved it! I can't wait to go again. This could definitely be dangerous - a yarn shop close enough to do a "fiber" lunch!

Monday, February 12, 2007

Happy Birthday Abe!

Today is Abraham Lincoln's birthday! I enjoy a bit of trivia now and then and since today is Lincoln's birthday - here are some random facts about him that I found interesting:

Eye color - Gray
Height - Six feet and four inches (my hubby's height)
Weight- 180 pounds (skinny!)
Shoe size - 14 (Wow!!)
Name of pet dog - Fido (How generic! I wonder if this is where the "genericness" came from)

I also found a really cool site that has famous quotes. I always knew Lincoln was smart. Here are some of my favorites...

"A woman is the only thing I am afraid of that I know will not hurt me."

"Am I not destroying my enemies when I make friends of them?"

"And in the end it's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years."

"Avoid popularity if you would have peace" (I guess I was wise beyond my years in high school - and more peaceful!!)

"Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt." (more people should remember this one!)

"Common looking people are the best in the world: that is the reason the Lord makes so many of them."

"If I were two-faced, would I be wearing this one?"

"Marriage is neither heaven nor hell, it is simply purgatory"

"The best thing about the future is that it comes one day at a time."

"Whatever you are, be a good one."

"Whenever I hear anyone arguing for slavery, I feel a strong impulse to see it tried on him personally."

"You can fool all the people some of the time, and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time."

"You cannot escape the responsibility of tomorrow by evading it today."

"You have to do your own growing no matter how tall your grandfather was."

And for those of you with kids (or those of you who just like to color) - here's a handy dandy picture of good ole Abe to print out and color :)

And if you're bored - here are Abe Lincoln related crafts I found:

1. Use thickened frosting or glue and pretzel sticks to make log cabins. You can also use graham crackers.
2. Make penny rubbings by putting a coin under a sheet of thin paper and rubbing it with the side of a crayon or pencil lead
3. Make a top hat

Happy Birthday Abe!

Friday, February 09, 2007

New Blogger

So I finally changed over to the "New and Improved" Blogger. I picked a new template and gave my blog a makeover!
What do you think?

Mac users - can you see everything? Is anything "wonky"? Please let me know!

Thanks for your help!

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Little bags

I finished sewing up four little wallet type bags and one drawstring bag last night.

I made this little drawstring bag for small knitting projects like socks or mittens. The inside fabric is one that I made when I did the marbling back in December.

Thanks to Sarah's good advice - I altered the way the drawstring opening worked on this bag. Instead of just leaving a hole at the top of the bag for the drawstring - I used a seam ripper and opened up the side seam to pull the cording through and added an extra round of stitches at the top of the bag. I think it looks much more "finished" doing it this way.

I also made 4 wallets/change purses

I just love this pattern. I made one mini wallet exactly as the pattern instructed. It's the perfect size for credit cards and money.

I then decided to alter the pattern to make a larger size. I'm thinking stitch marker holders? Needle holders? DPN holders? The ideas and uses for these little bags are endless! The one with the turtle fabric is my favorite!

I also used more of the marbled fabric I made:

Another alteration I did was to use velcro for the closures instead of snaps. I thought it would be easier to open and close and less chance of ripping the snap off or ripping the fabric by mistake. (Ask me how I know this! hehehe)

I will definitely be making more of these cuties soon. They are perfect for gifts too - so look out - you just may get one from me!

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Sew cool...

I've been surfing around on some different kinds of sites lately (sewing blogs) and I am finding such amazing things.

For instance....

I found the coolest little drawstring bags! I'm trying to improve my sewing skills (which totally suck right now!) and I thought that I could make some project bags for my knitting. After all - a sock-in-progress needs a nice home too :)

So - I'd share a few links that tickled my fancy with you. I actually made these last night. (I will post pics of my finished objects soon) I need to add a snap to one and perfect the drawstring opening on the other)

Change Purse

Drawstring bag

And, thanks to the lovely Sarah - AKA sewing superstar, I will be perfecting my bag with an improved method for doing the drawstring closure.

Until I fix it - you'll have to be satisfied with the links... pictures will be coming soon though!

Wait - there's more!

I also am overwhelmed with all the cool stuff you can make from this monster list of bag tutorials on Craftster!


There are some talented people out there!

I'm on the lookout for more cool purses and project bag tutorials - if you know of a good one - send it my way!


Friday, February 02, 2007

Do not go Gentle into that good night...

In honor of the 2nd Annual (silent) Poetry Reading - here's one of my favorite poems. It always reminds me of the movie Dead Poets Society...one of my favorites.


Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.
Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

And you, my father, there on the sad height,
Curse, bless me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

And as an added bonus - here's a look at my version of Fetching - yes I finally caved and made some fingerless gloves. I love them - they are my driving gloves. My hands don't freeze on the wheel - but I can still grip.

Pattern: Fetching
Yarn: Noro Silk Country in color #5
Needles: US6 DPNs
Alterations: Instead of doing the cable near the knuckles - I changed it to K2P2 ribbing.

Happy Friday everyone!