Posts Tagged With: Ravelry

I Love My Toys

I will admit to being something of a techno-geek. I love my electronic toys. I have a laptop; I have an iPod; and now, I have a tablet (I don’t have a cell phone, though… can’t see the need for one of those). I’ve been eyeing them for some time now, recognizing that my eyesight is… aging… let’s just leave it at that. As much as I love my iPod for things like music or audiobooks, it isn’t the best for things like knitting patterns, ebooks, or recipes.

This being the time of year of sales on all sorts of things, I decided it was time to splurge. John, of course, thought I was being a total idiot, wasting money on something I don’t need. Ah well, I intend on making good use of my new Samsung Galaxy Tab 4, 8.0″, 32 GB tablet.

New Toy

I’ve already added some apps to the tablet and have made sure to add the pattern I’m currently working on. I think I mentioned, didn’t I, that I received a new coat for Christmas? Well, a new coat needs new gloves. In my search for the perfect pair, I came across a Ravelry post that said Julia Mueller (aka Laris) was closing her pattern shop and offering all of her amazing patterns for free. As much as I hate to see that happen, it was too good an opportunity to pass up; I downloaded a bunch of her patterns.

A few years ago, I knitted her Knotty gloves; they’re one of my favourite pairs (I knitted them in an off-white alpaca blend). Julia’s patterns are well-written and gorgeous; she truly is a talented designer.

Of the patterns I downloaded, I decided on Bobbie. I’m using Lana Grossa Meilenweit Stretch sock yarn in a variegated denim blue/green combination.


It’s mostly blue, with a little bit of green thrown in for variation. Seeing as my new coat is navy blue, I think this is just the right yarn. And, as a bonus, on the tablet, it’s easy to read, enlarge, and mark up the pattern as needed.

Yup, I love my toys; I am one happy girl!

Categories: Blogging, Knitting | Tags: , , , , , , | 3 Comments

December – Part Two

Wow! It isn’t even noon yet and I’ve baked two batches of bread – two loaves of raisin bread and two loaves of Halifax County white bread. At least one loaf from each batch is destined for the freezer. Yesterday, I made a large pot of Dutch Split Pea soup and 5 one liter containers are now stored in the freezer. In addition to the baking, I’ve managed to keep the kitchen tidy and do some knitting. I need to do some laundry but the day is still young. I can honestly say I’m having a productive day.


In my last post, I ended by saying that there’s more knitting that’s in the works. Do you remember this mischievous little creature?


I knitted Little Monkey a few years ago now and have even started writing a children’s book about the Big Adventures of Little Monkey. (I’ve read it to Trinity and Ethan and they both loved it and wanted to hear more about Little Monkey’s escapades.) Well, this little monkey, we’ve decided, needs some clothes. To that end, I’ve downloaded two more of Annita Wilschut’s patterns, a pair of shorts and a dress, for this little monkey.

LM shorts

There isn’t much to see yet but I did cast on and worked a few rows last night. If you knit the monkey and the clothing in the same weight of yarn, the clothes come out just the right size. If you have never heard of Annita Wilschut, you should check out some of her creations. All of her patterns are very detailed and contain loads of pictures to guide you through the process. All of them are seamless, with minimal sewing required.  I have noticed some translation issues but, really, they’re minor. The only reason I know they’re translation-related is that I speak, read, and write (a little) Dutch, Annita’s first language.

Incidentally, I’ve already decided that one of my goals for 2015 is to write more Little Monkey stories. My grandchildren, my daughter, and my husband all agree that it’s something I really need to do.

Categories: Baking, Blogging, Knitting | Tags: , , | Leave a comment


And suddenly, it’s December! We’ve had snow, we’ve had freezing rain. We’ve had cold temperatures (down to about -15ºC); it’s warming up a bit now (at about 3ºC right now). Both John and I have been hit with our first colds of the season; mine kept me home for two days. We’re on the mend now, thankfully.

snow bikes

With winter weather comes the urge for knitting. I’ve really been bitten by the knitting bug this winter, more than I have all year. I suppose the break from knitting was a necessary one. Coming back to it now, I’m finding myself enjoying it more than I have in what feels like a very long time.

This past week, I’ve kept my needles busy. One of Ethan’s slippers is finished… well, the knitting of one slipper is finished. The second is almost half finished. They won’t be completely finished, of course, until the felting process is complete.


The little piece of purple yarn is there as a marker for joining the cuff to the foot. Once felted, these slippers will look like high top running shoes, complete with laces. Once Ethan’s are finished, I’ll make Trinity’s and won’t felt them until the kids are around to watch the process.

I also started, and finished a small project for a friend with a baby. Over the years, I’ve come to realize that scarves on little ones can be a hazard and the use of scarves is no longer encouraged for infants. When the weather’s cold, though, little necks need to stay warm, too. I’ve always been of the belief that if it’s cold enough for you, as a parent, to pull on a sweater or wear a jacket, hat, scarf, and mittens, you should be dressing your child accordingly as well.

To that end, I went hunting on the Drops (Garnstudio) web site and found a cute little pattern for a neck scarf that ties at the back.

The pattern is Henrik VIII (click the title to see the pattern). It uses less than one ball of yarn and would have been finished in one evening if my cold-clouded brain had comprehended the increase row near the end. If you check out the pattern pictures, you’ll see that it covers the neck nicely and looks almost like a dickey. It should definitely keep any cold winds or gusts off of the recipient’s neck.

The yarn I used was some leftover Sandnes Garn Lanett Baby Ull, 100% superwash wool on 2.25 mm straight needles.

I also decided this week that I’m going to knit another pair of socks for myself… maybe. I’m not sure I have any more of the yarn I started with so this may end up just being an experiment that will be frogged once I see how it fits after turning the heel.

red socks

We shall see. For now, it’s simply mindless knitting. I’ve been toying with a few ideas. I may knit this one up to the heel, work the heel in a different colour, then work the cuff in a third colour. Hopefully, working it like that might leave me with enough yarn to work the foot of the second sock in the same way. I only have one 50 gm. ball of the red yarn, unfortunately. I bought it quite some time ago so I doubt I’ll be able to find another ball of it; even if I did, I don’t remember what brand it is as there’s no tag or label with it. I do know that it’s a superwash DK wool and is very soft and cushy. If I do manage to make a matching sock, they will definitely be nice and warm. I like nice and warm!

Before I end this post, I have to do a bit of bragging. It’s not bragging about myself; I have to brag about my daughter. She’s been crocheting for some time now but has never quite picked up on how to read a pattern; well, she sure can now!

owl hats

Ethan doesn’t look very happy, does he? He wasn’t feeling well when Kristen picked the kids up from school and, shortly after this picture was taken, he threw up. He does love his hat… really! Kristen has been keeping her crochet hooks flying and I have convinced her to join Ravelry. Once she saw how easy it is to look up all kinds of crochet patterns, she was hooked (yes, bad pun, I know… couldn’t resist).

There’s more I could write about but this post is, I think, long enough. I’ll save the rest for another post. For now, I’d best get going. I made a big pot of pea soup last night and I’m planning on baking a couple kinds of bread today – Raisin bread and another couple loaves of white bread for the freezer. As well, there’s laundry to do and Christmas decorating to be put up, and…… well, you get the picture.

Categories: Knitting, Slippers, Socks, The Weather, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Fish Lips and Octopus Legs

It feels like I’m “under the sea”, as the Disney song says. I’ve downloaded a pattern with the lovely title of Fish Lips Kiss Heel and I’m working with two circular needles; yes, I know an octopus has eight legs but knitting with two circulars feels a little like knitting with legs dangling all over the place. It’s easy to lose count.. four, eight… when it’s ends of needles, who can tell?


This has become my very own personal challenge. I’ve been following the directions in the pattern/technique I wrote about on Sunday, the Fish Lips Kiss heel. Thing is, you start at the toe and the directions are for the heel. I’ve only ever made one pair of toe up socks and they are NOT my favourite socks, by any stretch.

Patty-Joy has you make up cardboard templates for each person you want to knit socks for (as you can see, I’m starting with Ethan – he has the smallest feet in the family around me) and work from that template. Last night, I had almost three inches of sock knit up but, when trying it on the template, it was on the big side. I’ll keep you informed as to how it all goes.

Herein lies the reason for today’s post (incidentally, don’t expect a daily post – I just happen to be on a roll and remembering how much fun blogging can be). Those of you who knit socks from the toe up… do you have a favourite toe? A favourite cast on? The one pictured is Judy’s Magic Cast On (there’s a link to it on the “On The Web” page (up at the top right of this page), which I quite like. I’m just not that familiar with starting at the toe.

Point me in the direction of your favourite toe pattern.


Categories: Blogging, Knitting, Socks | Tags: , , | 4 Comments

Fish Lips and Felted Slippers

Well, the knitting bug is back. I’m not going crazy but I certainly am back to enjoying the process. I’ve just cast on a pair of slippers for Ethan, my 5 year old grandson. If you’re a regular reader of this blog, you know that our suite has ceramic tile floors. In the summer, that is a definite bonus as the floors are always nice and cool. In the winter, however, the floors are always freaking cold!

The kids are very good about taking their shoes off when they come in but with the floors as cold as they are sometimes, I don’t like the thought of little feet getting frosty. Hence, slippers must be had.

A few weeks ago, I took Trinity and Ethan to our local yarn store, the Art of Yarn, and went through a book of slipper patterns. Both agreed that the Fiber Trends felt boot slipper pattern (CH-7) would be perfect. We looked at the appropriate yarns and they each chose their colours. Last weekend, I picked up the yarn and needles and last night, I cast on for Ethan’s slippers. This morning, I realized I had started on the wrong size so I’ve frogged the little bit I’d knit and started over.


I’m really looking forward to the felting process, which I intend to do when the kids are here. I think they’ll enjoy the process.

Now, in the matter of John’s socks. I’ll be going stash diving in a little while. I know I have other grey yarn that’s similar to the yarn I used.

Sandie left an interesting comment on yesterday’s post and I’ve followed up on  it. She referred me to the Fish Lips Kiss  Heel… try saying that three times real fast!… and I looked it up on Ravelry. It looked interesting so I splurged. I spent a whole $1.17 cdn and have downloaded the pattern, all 16 pages of it! Wow! That’s a lot of description.

I will definitely be trying that pattern/method. I think I’ll start with a pair of socks for Ethan before going big and making another pair for John. I’d rather knit a pair of socks for 7″ feet than for 12″ feet, especially since it’s a new-to-me pattern. When they arrive later today, I’ll start following the directions for measuring Ethan’s feet; we may even go stash diving together to see if any of the sock yarn I have meets his exacting standards.

If you’d like to check it out, you can find it on Ravelry. Just click and you should be taken directly there.

Categories: Blogging, Knitting, Slippers | Tags: , , , | 1 Comment

It’s Right Around the Corner

Christmas is rapidly approaching and I’m nowhere near ready. It isn’t that we do a lot for Christmas – we don’t – but I do like to send out a few cards to some special people in our lives. I usually make my own cards from one of my own photos or a photo I’ve found online (from a site like stock.xchng). They’ve always turned out well and, I think, been well received. This year, however, I’m doing something different.

Having taken up water colour painting, it’s only logical that I paint something to be used for my cards this year. It’s an agonizingly slow process, unfortunately. I mean, it is for me.

In progressIt’s taken a couple of weeks to decide the best way to tackle this little subject. This week, it all came together and I’m finally making some progress. There’s still some work to do on the painting but I should have it finished this weekend.

In addition to the painting coming together, I’ve also been doing some knitting this week. It’s a very simple knit but I anticipate that it will take a while to finish this project.

lessismoreThe pattern is Less Is More by Phazelia and is a free Ravelry download. The scarf in this picture is not mine; it’s a picture from the pattern. Here’s mine… all 2″ of it.

Lessismore_evThe reason it could take a while to finish this scarf is that it is knit with lace weight yarn on 2.5 mm circular needles. That’s some pretty fine knitting. The scarf is a long tube with “tufts of grass”, visible in the  top picture. I’m making the tufts and I’m adding some complementary glass beads. Both the tufts and the beads are placed randomly, wherever I’m inspired to put them. At this point, I’ve made two tufts and place one bead; I have a long way to go!

It’s been pretty cold here this week; right now (at about 12:30 p.m.), the temperature is a balmy -12ºC (11ºF) but the sun is shining and the sky is clear. There’s still a bit of snow on the ground and there’s a possibility of more on the way but at least today is a clear, sunny day. I’m already tired of the dark and dreary days we’ve been having lately. We don’t really want to go out but there are groceries that are needed and I really would like to stop in at Opus, our local art supply store. Once we get back, the painting will be worked on again… and finished!



Categories: Blogging, Just stuff, Knitting, Painting, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , | 8 Comments

A Sure Sign of Spring

I don’t often talk about the weather. Around here, you never know what you’re going to get. In the last couple of weeks, we’ve had temperatures hovering around 30ºC and down to almost freezing. May in the Okanagan is a month of uncertainty when it comes to the weather. Even June can be temperamental; June last year was dubbed June-uary because it was so cold.

Nonetheless, you know it’s spring, no matter what the weather does, when the Armstrong asparagus puts in an appearance at our local markets. We eagerly await its arrival.

asparagusIt’s here! That means spring has truly arrived, as far as I’m concerned. I’ve been having fun playing with this lovely vegetable. We’ve already had it in mini quiches, we’ve had it steamed with a lovely oregano lemon aioli (mayonnaise), and roasted with a drizzle of oil, salt and pepper. I even save the ends to make cream of asparagus soup (not the woodiest bits but the part that would normally be wasted).

And, surprise, surprise, I’ve been knitting! When it involves Malabrigo lace weight and beads, you know it’s going to be something squishy, soft, and a little bit glittery.

jewelled xThis is the Jewelled X scarf, a free pattern by knittimo (Sachiko Uemura), available through Ravelry. The colours in the picture do not do it justice at all! The yarn is a variegated green and the beads are green glass beads lined with silver. The scarf is actually a loop scarf with the two ends grafted together. Because it’s all stocking stitch, it will curl a bit but I think it will be okay after blocking. I’m loving the fact that it’s almost mindless knitting. The beaded section required a bit of concentration but the rest is plain old stocking stitch.

Apart from working on this little scarf and a pair of boring black socks for John, there’s really been very little knitting going on but it does feel good to play with yarn again.



Categories: Blogging, Just stuff, Knitting, The Weather | Tags: , , , | 8 Comments

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