Tuesday, July 31, 2012

sorry, sorry...

I really didn't want or mean to go away, but things and life conspired against me. I've mentioned how my job has exploded and consumed so much of me, and there have been some other things going on in my personal life. Nothing earth shaking, and nothing that is directly affecting my immediate family, but nonetheless, it's stuff that has been taking up my time, and brain space. We spent the last week at the cottage and it was wonderful. I knit, I wove, I read, I relaxed, I spent time reconnecting with my husband and son, and spent time with friends. I need more time up there.
We'll head back up for the long weekend this weekend (Simcoe Day here in Ontario), and that will help.
I promise to show the stuff I knit and wove. There are scarves, socks, and I've become reacquainted with my navy laceweight cardigan, and I love it.
Give me some time to straighten out my brain, and I promise to share everything soon.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

nothing, nothing, nothing...

I got nothing. I'm running around, like the proverbial chicken with my head cut off this week. While my entire office has known for weeks that I am on vacation next week, now is when that fact is actually registering. So everyone wants things done NOW. Do what I can, but I can't fit 50 hours of "I really need this before you go!!" into what's left of my week. As I mentioned, we have expanded out company recently, and added some new staff. (we bought out another company that was going under and inherited some of their people). These are the main culprits. I get a lot of "Well, that's not how we did it at XXX!" I'm so close to saying, "And XXX went bankrupt - see the correlation??"
So I've gone to my boss and asked him to give me a priority list, which I have attacked in order. There are some unhappy people, but I'm one person, and can only do so much. And I have one day left to do it!
Add in the fact that my husband is pretty much going through the same thing at his job (except he owns the place, so it's a little worse for him), and we are trying to get everything together that we want to take, plan out most of the meals so I don't have to go into town if I can help it, and still get the boy to baseball games and other sundry affairs - well, the knitting has taken a back seat.
I'm still knitting sanity-saving socks, but that's about all my fried brain can take right now.
I do have grandiose plans for our vacation week, though - If I can only decide what knitting / weaving / beading I want to take...
Oh to hell with it - I'm taking it ALL!
I'll probably be posting from the cottage - once the wine, beer and "cottage coffees" work their magic on me...

Monday, July 16, 2012

fickle, fickle...

I'm fickle. Really not a surprise, but anyway... Last weekend at the cottage, I planned on making a bunch of blanket squares, and ended up exclusively knitting on my green jeweled cowl. Not a problem of course, but just goes to show how difficult it can be for me to stick to a plan. This past weekend, I also had plans to FINISH my jeweled cowl, since I had made such great progress on it, and wouldn't it be great to get it off the needles?
Can we imagine how well that worked?
It is green and it is beaded, but it's not the jeweled cowl...
A little background... we are in town this week, but starting next weekend, we are at the cottage for the whole week. Even though we will be taking both cars (husband has to leave early for a work commitment), thereby giving us more space to cart stuff up, I still thought to bring my Cricket loom up this weekend, so I could finish the green beaded silk scarf that's been sitting for a while. I was going to put the loom away until next week, but it kept staring at me... and, well, I succumbed.

The first project on my new Cricket and I choose an unyielding fibre like 100% silk. Then I add in the fact that there are beads interspersed along the silk.

My edges are a touch wonky right now, and this piece needs a good soak, and I still have to finish the fringe first. (Must find my fringe twister...)

But I love it, and am pretty happy with it. The best thing is that my loom is now open for so many possibilities. I left it at the cottage and will be bringing an assortment of weavable fibres up for our holidays.

Which, knowing me, I will proceed to ignore...

Friday, July 13, 2012

travel knitting

As is well documented, socks are my go to for travel knitting. Whether its when I'm in the passenger seat going to work with my boss two days a week, or Friday and Sunday trips to and from the cottage - socks are easy - I use a plain vanilla, no pattern, afterthought heel, so nothing more than a tube with a toe sock pattern, meaning I am fully engaged in any conversations in the car. So I can brief my boss on what's happening in my department, or talk to my husband and son as we catch up on each other's lives, and what went on during the week. It took a while for my boss to realize that my brain could be fully engaged on work issues while knitting a sock - he still finds it funny sometimes. My husband and son are used to it, and find it odd when I'm NOT knitting.
You'll see two different socks on the go - this is standard, as I stagger them, so as not to have to worry about toe decreases, or ribbing, if possible. The red above is a cotton stretch, knit with 56 stitches on 3.25mm needles. Soft and cushy, these are favourites of many of my girl friends. The yellow and black swirly stripes is Tofutsies (50% Superwash Wool/ 25% SOYSILK brand fiber/ 22.5% Cotton/ 2.5% Chitin (made from shrimp and crab shells!) from SWTC yarns. Fun and comfortable, the cotton makes it easy to knit in summer. For this thinner yarn, I use my standard sock recipe - 64 stitches on 2.25mm needles. These socks will probably go in the gift bag, with a potential recipient already in mind. The colours are the same as my son's school colours- black and gold - so I see a teacher gift this Christmas!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

blanketing my deck

I'm still thoroughly enjoying the POP blanket squares. I think it's the Noro Silk Garden that is keeping me amused. I love how the colour changes seem subtle, but show up quite nicely in these squares.
I'm using 3 or 4 different colourways of Noro Silk Garden - I started with two when I started the blanket, but when I (quickly) decided to make this a full size blanket rather than a baby or lap blanket, I dug around and found a few more balls of Silk Garden hanging around. I love the mix of colours and tones it is creating.
Above is 34 squares (now at 35), and I think this is about a quarter of the blanket size I want. I'm still on the first skein of the Cascade Eco Wool (the black border wool), and I have 2 more of the black and 2 of a dark grey. I haven't decided if I'm going to randomly add some grey squares or build a pattern. (I can hear Nancy right now - PATTERN! ORDER! NO RANDOM!) I think I will have to wait and see once I get all the squares done. I get the feeling it may take as much time to place the squares as it will to sew them together.
This is not a short term project...

Monday, July 09, 2012

revisiting an old favourite

When I spend a weekend at the cottage, I tend to overpack the knitting. (Surprised? I thought not...) This summer seems to be all about the smaller projects, which is a good idea when it gets hot. So, socks and blanket squares have been the norm so far. But this past weekend, I tossed in a UFO that had been hanging around, and it caught my attention. So much so that, other than car time (which I save for socks), it was all I knit on this weekend.
Meet jeweled cowl, version 2.0. I've knit this before in a peachy/grey mix cashmere laceweight. This one is a richly toned green fingering weight merino/silk mix. I like the slightly heavier feel of the fingering weight, and the tonal green beads match perfectly.
I'm hoping I can stay reasonably committed to this project - I;d love to finish it before it gets put aside yet again...