Monday, June 27, 2016

Pringle Animation - Still Funny After All These Years

I'd seen this animation a long time ago and came across it again.

The description on YouTube is: "Pringle of Scotland has commissioned artist David Shrigley to create a humorous short animated film about life behind-the-scenes at Pringle to celebrate the brands return to Milan Fashion Week. The animation showcased during Pringle of Scotland's menswear show in Milan on 18th January [2010?], depicts the making of jumpers and cardigans over the past 195 year history of the Scottish brand."

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Good Things

(c) The Loopy Ewe
Last weekend I was in Denver and had a VERY good time.  It's always nice to see my friends and spend time with them.

On Saturday three of us made a road trip north to The Loopy Ewe in Fort Collins.  Their monthly yarn offering for June was "Lake Dillon" by Socks That Rock.  Isn't it pretty?  I was lucky enough to spend some relaxing vacation time at Lake Dillon when I lived in Colorado.  These colors are a good representation.

I haven't decided what to make with the yarn.  I don't know whether to make socks or a scarf or something totally different.  For now, the yarn is just going to be admired.  It's not like I don't have any other knitting projects to work on in the meantime!

We had planned to visit Fancy Tiger in Denver first thing on Saturday morning.  They were celebrating their 10th Anniversary.  However, there was a line down the street and around the corner.  Some people must have lined up very early as they had lawn chairs and were knitting.  Part of the draw to the shop, too, was a visit by Stephen West. We passed on an early morning visit but did drop in later in the afternoon.

On a table inside the door was a sweater that caught my eye immediately.  It is simply constructed and will be great with slacks, jeans or a skirt.  The pattern is the Junegrass Pullover, designed by
Carrie Bostick Hoge.  The yarn, Junegrass DK, is surprisingly soft.  It was a pleasure to meet the people from the company.  I've got the yarn and plan to have the sweater finished to wear this fall.  I only plan to make one small change to the pattern.  I don't mind the slit in the side but will make it shorter than it's shown in this picture.  I also like that the back is longer than the front - very practical when bent over a computer.

(c) Fancy Tiger Crafts
This is the description of the yarn found on Ravelry:
         This pattern is designed for Junegrass DK, a small batch yarn entirely grown and milled in Colorado. It is a soft, lofty blend of white Merino/Rambouillet cross wool and dark grey Wensleydale wool, blended together for the perfect natural heather grey.

On Sunday evening was the Gladys Knight concert at Hudson Gardens.  It was so pleasant to sit in a lawn chair and listen to beautiful music, even if it was 104F for the first part of the evening.   Don't tell me that it's a dry was hot! It did cool off and there was a slight breeze a little later.  I always knew that Gladys Knight can sing, but she CAN SING!  For almost an hour and a half she sang and talked to the crowd.  There was even an opportunity to stand up and dance and be a Pip!  I wouldn't hesitate to go to one of her concerts again.

Good things are continuing.  After Shetland Wool Week this September, myself and two friends decided to spend a few days in London.  By coincidence, it's at the same time as the Knitting and Stitching Show at Alexandra Palace, also known as "Ally Pally".  Tonight I got my ticket to the Show.  Also planned is a visit to Loop for their knit night.  

Sunday, June 12, 2016

So Much World To Explore

I'm looking forward to some travel next week....back to Denver to see friends, do some knitting, take a road trip and listen to some music.  It doesn't get much better than that.

The road trip will be to a favorite destination:  The Loopy Ewe yarn shop in Fort Collins.  It big, spotlessly clean and well-stocked with all kinds of temptations.  The four of us always claim that we don't "need" anything, but manage to find something that we can't live without anyway!

Before that, however, will be a visit to another favorite shop:  Fancy Tiger in Denver.  It's celebrating it's 10th Anniversary.  How time flies.  I remember when it opened.  It's a unique shop with a bit of everything for the knitter or sewer.  It's got a charm that is irresistible.  I took an excellent dyeing class there a few years ago.

(c) Fancy Tiger Crafts

For music, it doesn't get much better than Gladys Knight.  She'll be performing at Hudson Gardens.  I've looked at the long-range forecast and the weather looks like it'll be good.  Here's hoping that the report is correct.  [Still on my bucket list is a visit to Gladys Knight's restaurant in Atlanta].

(c) Gladys Knight

Speaking of travel....have you ever been to Ireland?  It's beautiful.  If you're a knitter and you'd like to visit Ireland this fall, check out the tour sponsored by Celtic Journeys.  I travelled with them to Scotland last September and the trip was well thought-out and planned.  I couldn't have asked for anything better.  As a matter of fact, when I wanted to return to the Shetland Islands this year I called on Jean to help with the organization.  You'll find the details here.  Tell Jean that I said Hi!!

(c) Celtic Journeys

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Travel Afghan - Hex #11

Another finished project - this time it's a block for my Travel Afghan..  The trip was to Savannah, and Tybee Island, Georgia, favorite destinations.


Pattern:  Persian Dreams, using a single colorway skein, no fair isle knitting

Yarn: Savannah Sock from the Copper Corgi Fiber Studio
Color:  Clifftop
100% Superwash merino

Copper Corgi yarn is from a local Savannah dyer, Sarah DeRoo.

Purchased at The Frayed Knot in Savannah.

Needles:  US #2/2.75 mm

Notes:  A very small amount of dye came off while knitting, but not enough to worry about.  I soaked the hexagon in a vinegar bath and there was no dye came off in the water.  The yarn is very soft and feel good to knit with, and even better after the wash.

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Mitten #10

Another day, another mini-mitten.  This one reminds me of a candy cane.  It only took a few days to complete this one.  My goal is to have all 24 mittens complete by December.


Pattern:  Advent Mini-Mitten Garland
by Kat Lewinski

Yarn: Red - Jamieson & Smith - #1403 
White - Jamieson & Smith - #1A

Needles:  US #1/2.25 mm - double points

Friday, June 3, 2016

It's Catch-up Time

I've been a bit neglectful of my blog of late, especially posting about finished projects.  There will be a number of separate posts about the Advent Mini-Mittens in the next couple of weeks.  I'm counting each mitten as a project because a fair amount of work goes into each one - and I want the tally on the right sidebar to reflect that.

I've just finished mitten #17, but first I need to report on mitten #9.  It was started late in December but didn't get finished until mid-February.  It was a busy time over the holidays.  Later, I'll add mittens #7 and #8 as they were finished in 2015.


Pattern:  Advent Mini-Mitten Garland
by Kat Lewinski

Yarn: Natural (light beige) - Wirsit - purchased at the Shetland Textile Museum 
Note:  "wirsit" is the Shetland word for wool
Wine - Jamieson & Smith - #9113 
Green - Jamieson & Smith - #47

Needles:  US #1/2.25 mm - double points

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Shetland Wool Week Classes

This morning I was up and ready to book classes for Shetland Wool Week as soon as they were available online - 6:00 AM, my time.  All the time spent trying to get concert tickets in past has paid off - great training.  I was ready with my wish list and my credit card was at hand.

I'm so pleased that I got all of my first choices:

Click to enlarge
Of course, there is much more to do.  There are open studio visits, Sunday tea, gatherings with other knitters at The Hub, museums, sightseeing, etc.  It's going to be a full week of knitting.  I'm looking forward to spending time with friends, and making new friends from places far away!

Monday, May 23, 2016

The Countdown Is On

Sign-ups start tomorrow for classes at Shetland Wool Week.  I've got 4 of them picked out, plus some events, talks, open studios and get-togethers (makkin' and yakkin').  I've got my fingers crossed (which makes it difficult to knit) that I'm able to get my first choices.  It's hard to believe that Wool Week is in 4 months.

Sunday, May 22, 2016


Do you know this pattern?

Screen shot from The Great British Sewing Bee
It was seen on a British TV show and is a lovely design.  A late friend was working on this same shawlette, in these same colors.  She used Plucky Yarns.  It would be a shame to leave the project unfinished

Update: I've learned that the pattern is "Avant l'orage", which translates as Before The Storm.  It's a slip-stitch pattern, available on Ravelry in both French and English.

Monday, May 2, 2016

Tubular Bind Off

I've been knitting for a very long time and one thing that amazes me is that I'm still learning new techniques - new to me, at least.  I'm pleased about that.  I'd hate to think that there is an "end of the road" where you know it all.  Where's the fun in that?  Where's the challenge?  What would keep me interested?

I just learned how to do the Tubular Bind Off and I like the result, although I've had a couple of problems along the way.  The problems were all mine, not the technique.  I found that dropping a stitch back a few stitches and down a couple of rows, then trying to go back to pick it up is a pain.

Basically, you're putting your ribbing onto two needles.  For my K1, P1 ribbing I put the knit stitches on the front needle, the purl stitches on the back needle, then join using the Kitchener stitch.  I have no problems with the Kitchener stitch.  It's well-stuck in my brain.  However, it's not a good idea to try to do it (over a total of 260 stitches) when the yarn is black (with a slight halo), it's late and I'm tired and two light bulbs (out of 4 in the lamp) have burned out and I'm trying to avoid replacing until the next day - not a good combination.

For so many stitches you need to leave a long tail to do the Kitchener stitch.  I went overboard and could have grafted about 1000 stitches, so the tail was constantly getting twisted and tangled.  After redoing the tubular bind off a second time I've learned my lessons.

I'm working on the top-down Machu Picchu sweater and I wanted a bind off that didn't flare at the waist ribbing.  This one seems to be doing the trick.  I found excellent instructions by KnitPurlHunter. She's a good teacher, her videos are clear and a great resource.  This is a bind off that is stretchy and looks good.  I'll be using it often.

It should be easier to bind off the cuffs on the sleeves when I get there.  I hope so.  Like I said, I've learned my lessons.