Knitting from the Heart

Knitters develop great bonds, and when one of them finds herself carrying a burden, knitters want to help.

Our friend Judy from Knit Night at Marin Fiber Arts got a horrible call last Saturday – her sister, who had been recovering at home from surgery, collapsed suddenly, and was pronounced dead at the hospital after paramedics attempted to revive her. She is being a good sister and seeing to many details and supporting her brother-in-law and nieces in the middle of this awful situation.

Last night, we began on a project for Judy to give her upon her return. I cannot say what it is, or it will spoil the surprise, but suffice it to say that we are glad to be doing just a little something to ease our friend’s broken heart.

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Knitting Balance

A couple of months ago, Kelley of the Knitpicks podcast talked about having a variety of projects going at the same time. One that is portable,one that is very simple for knit gatherings, and the project that you keep at home and work on by yourself.

Here is my current knit gathering project, which started life as a mitered square blanket,but is now a mitered square edged blanket:

miteredsquare1

And I’m beginning the Hanami stole in some beautiful Malabrigo lace. The basketweave pattern was not happening. Now, could it be that I was tempting fate by: a. not using stitch markers on an unfamiliar charted lace pattern; b. going down a needle size with lace yarn, and c. not skeining the lace-weight but putting it over my knees because I wanted to start NOW? Yeah, doh. I got back on the sanity train, put away the lace weight,got out some cotton that someone gave me from a UFO in worsted weight, broke out the size 7 needles, and got this:

hanamipattern

And I didn’t use stitch markers. I can be stubborn that way. I decided to do the full pattern twice,and I think it’ll turn into a market bag! Last night I skeined the lace yarn without a swift or a ball-winder (a pain!) and got back to swatching in Size 3 needles (MUCH better):

hanamswatch

Yeah, those are stitch markers in there. I do learn, just slowly!
Now I need to go buy the seed beads for the cast on!

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The Circle of Knitting LIfe

The cycle of knitting goes this way: a project is planning and dreamed of, materials acquired or purchased, swatches are made (right, all the time, right?) the project, if successful, reaches completion, including any particular needed accessories, such as belts and buttons. Hopefully, celebration occurs.

I’m at two very points this week. I’ve got a wonderful FO — the Juliaca cardigan sweater (which amazingly is the only one in all of Ravelry). I’ve been wearing it all week. More details below. At the same time, I was dreaming and planning new projects. Two swatches are now done. I have measurements, and now the projects can begin. I’m at both ends!

Onto the Juliaca sweater. It looks good off:

Juliaca sweater 5

It looks good on:

Juliaca sweater

I also scored some incredible buttons at Stitches West:

buttons2

These are from a small South African company called Incomparable Buttons. The vendor, who doesn’t have a website (darn!) is Nifty Thrifty Dry Goods. I loved them, and you can go to the wholesaler’s website, the particular ones I got are L375 (such a romantic name).

See how good that button looks on the sweater?

button on sweater

I am very happy.

At the other end of Knitting Life, two eggs are about to hatch. The one for me is the Corset by Annie Modesitt in some beautiful empire silk.

Here’s a test swatch, which was hung and weighted with some fashion pins:

Empire silk Swatch

Pretty stuff, huh!

The other sweater is the Flutter Sleeve Cardigan from Interweave Spring 2008. My LYS had a great sale, and I had a gift certificate that took care of part of it, so the whole thing is really quite reasonable. This swatch is perfectly on gauge. The sweater will be done in the darker color, and if I run out of yarn (unlikely, given the size of my cousin), I’ll use the lighter color for the button band and tabs.

Schulana2 swatch

It has a terrific “hand” and will be just the professional look that my new-to-work cousin needs for her wardrobe.

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