13 May 2008


So, I have been battling queue-itis to distract myself from finishing the Pi Shawl (or running out of yarn and having to rip back a few more rows, since this isn't really a commercially available yarn, before re-knitting the edging again, which is a bit tedious) and cast on for Kat Coyle's Tulips Cardigan from the Fall 2006 issue of Knitscene. I'm using Blue Sky Alpacas Alpaca Silk recovered from a cute vest I'd knit some time back but hardly ever wore. I think I will get more use out of this little cardi. I have four skeins of Blush yarn and think they will do for the fronts and back, but I'm trying to decide whether to get more for the sleeves or use the Ecru shade I have in this yarn and do the i-cord edging and empire waist tie, as well as the picked up hems I plan to do, in Ecru for a two-tone effect or do all pink. Decisions. I'm off to my knit night at Yarntopia, which carries Alpaca Silk, so I will make a decision tonight.

I've become very lazy when it comes to projects in process pictures, so you'll have to use your imagination, but the cardi has gone fast. I cast on Saturday and just have one front and the sleeves, which are short, to go.

08 May 2008

FO: Amy March's Slippers

Blogger seems to be behaving badly when it comes to pictures. I'll update this post when it comes around.
ETA: All better! (Assuming you can see the photo.)

Pattern: Amy March's Slippers from Tinyowlknits [Ravelry Download]
Yarns: Lamb's Pride Bulky in Strawberry Smoothie (two pair from one skein!), Malabrigo Worsted (doubled) in Ladrillo (orange) and Bobby blue (teal)
Needle: US10
Notions: Organza ribbon from M&J Trimming and pink satin ribbon from A.C. Moore
Techniques: Magic Cast-on for toe-up socks and a short-row heel

Thanks to bulky yarn (or worsted yarn held double) I can now whip one of these out in about an hour! It did take some time to turn the short-row heel at first, mainly because I wasn't reading the directions properly (d'oh). I'm psyched to have added some toe-up techniques to my arsenal. Maybe I'll knit some socks yet.

So, these are Mother's Day presents: teal for Mom, orange for Grandma, and pink for my sister-in-law. I don't think any of them will visit the blog in the next few days.

07 May 2008

FO: February Baby Sweater & Magic Slippers

Pattern: February Baby Sweater from The Knitter's Almanac and Magic Slippers from Sock Pixie
Yarn: Cherry Tree Hill Supersock Merino Potluck in Water (aqua and magenta)
Needles: US4 (sweater) and US2 (slippers)
Notions: Three magenta mother-of-pearl buttons from M&J Trimming

This is the second of three FBSes I've knit thus far but the only one that's actually baby-sized. The first was knit with a worsted weight alpaca and is more toddler-sized. And having learned from my mistake, I knit one up in Rowan Calmer to be toddler-sized on purpose (post on that one some time soon, once I sew on the buttons). EZ's pattern is great, but you do need to read through it carefully, as she packs a lot of information into a few sentences and buries the lede on buttonholes. I only did buttonholes in the yoke of this one, and I placed them too close together having read "eight garter ridges" as "eight rows" (i.e., four garter rows). But I think it works in the yoke-only instance, as there would have only been two buttons otherwise.

The Magic Slippers are so cute - I'm pondering knitting some up for grownups in worsted or bulky yarn. Picking up the stitches around the base is a little tedious but nothing I can't handle.

There will be more of these in my future, especially now that I've gotten toddler sizing down. I think the version in Calmer will be a great summer sweater.

05 May 2008

IMOnday: Yarntopia, New York, New York

I'm just going to act like I haven't been MIA for almost a month and get back to posting...

Shop: Yarntopia
Location: 974 Amsterdam Avenue (SW corner of 108th Street), New York, New York
Telephone: 212 316 YARN (9276)
Website: Yarntopianyc
Hours: Wednesday/Friday-Sunday 12-7, Tuesday/Thursday 12-9, Monday CLOSED
Payment: Cash, Check, Credit Card
Other: Classes, Knit Night (Tuesday), Books & Magazines

What's the first thing a knitter does when s/he moves to a new town? Find a new LYS, of course! And this one is mine, just 11 blocks from my apartment. Dona is the friendly and welcoming owner. There is a central table often piled with swatches from the available yarns, including Blue Sky Alpacas, Rowan, Malabrigo, Debbie Bliss, Noro, Lorna's Laces, Cascade, and more. Behind the table (with quite a few chairs for Knit Night) is a comfy couch for browsing the nice collection of knitting and crochet books available at the back. There is a full stock of Addi Turbo and Lace needles, as well as Clovers, Susan Bates, and lots of tools.

I like the fact that, in addition to being knowledgeable, friendly, and helpful, Dona is one of those web-savvy LYSOs. The first time I went into the store she admired my Koigu Clapotis. I know most LYSes in NYC are web-savvy, and I think that's a good thing. Since so much of what's happening in the knitting world today takes place online (or is at least blogged about there), being hooked in can only help business. There is also a Yarntopia group on Ravelry, which is a lot of fun and a good way to make sure your knitsibs will be around on Tuesday nights.

While Yarntopia is my LYS, it isn't the only yarn shop in town, so keep your eyes open for future IMOndays. And stay tuned the rest of the week for some FOs (lace, wee togs, and Mother's Day gifts).

P.S. I'll try to get some Yarntopia pics to add to this post.

09 April 2008


I hope to have some FOs to photograph in the next few days. Some lovely things will be completed today, now that I have some gorgeous buttons from M&J Trimming. I don't even want to tell you how much I spent on a tiny handful of buttons! But they will be so worth it, as you will see. And if you're ever in NYC, you should check it out: the buttons! the gimp! the feather trim! the crystals! the ribbon! Mon Dieu! I'm glad I went with specific projects to focus upon and Isobel to keep me from spending the day there. I think she enjoyed our adventure to the Garment District, though her favorite part was the giant plastic lobster hanging from the Red Lobster entrance in Times Square. Guess she's a New England girl at heart!

So, on to decisions. What next? I want to knit something for me and have been assessing the stash and my Ravelry queue...
-Black Dog Designs Ink Flared Sweater in BMFA's Geisha
-Tangled Yoke Cardigan in Jo Sharp Silkroad Tweed DK
-Rosy Tucker's Cocktail Capelet in Green Mountain Spinnery's Sylvan Spirit (different gauge yarn than the pattern, so would involve some swatching and math, probably)
-Kat Coyle's Tulips cardigan in Blue Sky Alpacas Alpaca Silk (after I frog the cute vest I made a few years back but never wear)
-A Cardigan for Arwen in O-Wool (I may not have enough of this, though someone on Ravelry made it in a larger size with 6.25 skeins - I have six)

In other news we have about six weeks to go to D-day, and I've been thinking about what to do with my wedding and engagement rings. I'm not sure I'll do anything with them for a while, but this article was interesting, as were the comments. I mooned about over the wedding band for weeks before we ordered it (and then they made the wrong one and had to line the store sample with more platinum to make it fit since there wasn't time to make another one - oy!), so it's kind of sad to not wear it but it is a symbol of something that is emotionally over and will soon be legally ended.

Most of the time I have no excuse for not blogging, but last week Isobel and I were at my parents' as my dear aunt had passed away. She fought breast, then bone, then brain cancer for the past ten years. She did it with humor and a can-do attitude, but now she is free of her suffering. For that we are all grateful. It was a bittersweet wake and funeral. Some people waited over an hour at the wake to condole with my uncle and cousin. But it was great to see some cousins and my aunt and uncle who drove up from Florida. I'm glad we went, and my parents were happy to have some cheery distraction in Isobel.

But I brought my rings back from my folks' where they had been for safekeeping. The best way to transport them was to wear them, and it was strange. Familiar yet discomfiting. Also weird-feeling was being back at my parents' house, since we flew home when the end was near for my aunt due to end of Spring Break craziness with the airlines and then extended our stay to attend the wake and funeral. The not knowing when we were going back to New York was reminiscent of some of my wandering feelings last year. But we did get to go visit my grandmother, which is always a treat, though I didn't get to treat myself to a visit to the Fold, since Isobel had just passed out in the backseat when we hit the exit for Marengo. Next time.

Thinking about The Fold has me leaning towards Ink Flare in Geisha, since it's the yarn I bought last time I was there, and I'm very curious to knit it up. I could hold off on the Cocktail Capelet until it gets a little warmer here (and until we get closer to planning a happy post-D-day nuptial-type event), and I'm not sure I'm ready to plunge back into a largely stockinette sweater, even one for me. My brother has his sweater, and we did a little blocking when I was home to hopefully add some length to sleeves and body. I'll have to get him to take a picture.

14 March 2008


Sorry for the expletive, but the buyer backed out of the sale. I found out just after Isobel and I had crossed the border into Massachusetts and would have turned around and headed back to NYC (through a crazy snowstorm - what is it about the stretch between Hartford and the Mass. border that always makes for an awful drive?), but Isobel really wanted to see Peter and he was at the house.

The upside to continuing the journey was her getting to see her father (though that has plenty of emotional baggage for me) and going to the bestest Knit Night I know at Yarns in the Farms. Isobel was a little nutty thanks to no nap, so we only stayed an hour, but it was fun to see such wonderful people again, and I bought some yarn.

Apparently, I can't actually upload pics to Blogger right now, so you'll have to wait to see my gorgeous yarn, but check this out. I bought the blue (surprise) and am planning to knit a baby blanket with it, but if that doesn't work out, I could make a sweater for myself with the 1200 yds. I got. Fifi, perhaps?

And I'm extra miffed that picture uploads aren't happening right now, as I have a finished pic of my brother's sweater, and I am quite proud of it. Hope he likes it (and that it fits).

We'll just keep on keeping on with the house and keep our fingers crossed that someone else comes along who loves it.

04 March 2008

Moving Forward

We've accepted an offer on the house. Assuming the inspection goes well (we fixed pretty much everything our inspector pointed out when we bought the house, so can't imagine any big problems will come up), we are to close at the end of the month. Yes, this month, which means I will be spending a bit of time up in Gloucester going through things and deciding what to do with them. Isobel and I are headed up there this morning to start working on a game plan and bring back the rest of my cookbooks and her toys and whatnot.

It is a bittersweet moment. The buyer plans to turn the house into a museum, which is good because (hopefully) lots of people will get to see the house and appreciate it's history. But it's also sad because this house had been lived in continuously since 1739. That's the way the cookie crumbles, though.

For you Massachusetts folk, I will give more advance notice for the next visit, which may very well be next week.

In knitting news I'm working away on the Swallowtail Shawl, having taken a break from my brother's sweater, as it's taking a toll on my wrists now that the whole shebang is on one needle. I appreciate seamless garments, but once the sleeves and body are united, it can be heavy, especially when it's for a tall, handsome fellow like my brother. I think my next sweater may be pieced, now that my finishing skills are somewhat improved. I'm considering that Drops sweater jacket that everyone's been knitting - "they" say it's a really quick knit.

I'm also thinking about knitting a Pi Shawl, since I've been re-reading Knitter's Almanac before bed, adding in some lace patterns to make it exciting. I've been combing my Barbara Walkers and have found some likely candidates that meet stitch and row count requirements as well as having purl-back rows. I am finding lace, the structure and balance of it, more and more intriguing.