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  • knitting1105 8:00 am on November 27, 2014 Permalink | Reply  

    Happy Thanksgiving! 

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    Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!!!!

     
  • knitting1105 10:08 am on November 21, 2014 Permalink | Reply  

    Carding naturally 

    This photo was posted by The Knitting Needle and Damage Done on Facebook. Not sure where she finds all of her photos, but it is a very interesting blog or Facebook page for knitters and those who love knitters to follow.

    Myself, I am glad that they invented hand carders!

    Cactus carding

     
  • knitting1105 10:35 pm on November 16, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: knitting continental style   

    Slo-Mo 

    I was away with girlfriends for the weekend in Michigan.  Great time, and as usual, I was busy knitting while there.  Chris videotaped these of me knitting in slow motion.

    As you would see me knitting:

    As it looks from my side:

     
  • knitting1105 1:42 pm on November 14, 2014 Permalink | Reply  

    Before the Polar Vortex 

    Here is my marigold harvest from last week, prior to the frost and cold that we are now experiencing:

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    They were laid out to dry on my basement table.  This is taking quite awhile.  Why is it that flowers wilt and dry when you don’t want them to, but these are hanging on.

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    Hopefully enough for some lovely dyeing next spring.  When life gives you marigolds, dye yarn.

     
  • knitting1105 10:42 pm on November 13, 2014 Permalink | Reply  

    Riley Mitts 

    Last summer, while taking Riley to visit an Alpaca farm during our vacation in Michigan, she was enamored with some purple fingerless mitts that had fun fur at the cuffs.  I told her that I would make her a pair that were the right size (the next morning she did ask me if they were finished yet!).  So, anticipating a visit last weekend with Riley and family, I made most of these mitts on our drive to Michigan (Koigu yarn), and finished them up with her looking on.  The mitts alone were exciting enough for her, but I told her that there were 2 surprises, which I introduced one at a time.

    Sparkly diamond buttons at the hand end of the mitts

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    And fun fur at the cuff:

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    She really loved them.

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    • Diane 2:22 am on November 14, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      Oh my gosh, these are beautiful for a beautiful niece who appreciates all the bling and fluff. I am sure she will wear them often with style!

      • knitting1105 10:38 am on November 14, 2014 Permalink | Reply

        Thanks, she did love them. We had a good time and she enjoyed playing with Uncle Dan.

    • Manning 4:42 pm on November 16, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      Did you just knit with….(gasp)…. f u n f u r ?????

      • knitting1105 10:25 pm on November 16, 2014 Permalink | Reply

        No Manning, have no fear. I sewed on a length of it. Have much left, as I had to purchase a spool. Need any?

  • knitting1105 10:28 am on November 8, 2014 Permalink | Reply  

    Because I love Poodles 

    Saw this a couple of weekends ago in front of a hotel while doing Open House Chicago.

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  • knitting1105 8:07 pm on November 6, 2014 Permalink | Reply  

    Perfect for the Park 

    These photos are of adorable Ria wearing this sweater that I knit for her last year.  She looks right at home in the colorful park at the French School.

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  • knitting1105 10:56 pm on November 4, 2014 Permalink | Reply  

    All done but the buttons 

    I have finally finished my first handspun and hand knit sweater using Woolgatherings fiber.  The process from fiber to sweater was fun.  I first spun the variegated as a 3ply,

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    Then I ordered and spun 2 plys of eggplant and one of rust as my semi-solid contrast. My problem here was that my spinning was not as fine with the semi-solid as it was with the variegated. After that, and a couple of false starts with patterns, my friend Jane suggested the February Ladies Sweater.  It was the perfect match.  I was able to most of my semi-solid to maximize the length.

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    Then I needed to choose buttons.  These were the 2 choices that I had on hand.

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    Even though there is no green in the fabric, I think that it made the best option, pulling out the other colors.

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    Problem is that the buttons are a bit too heavy for the drape of the sweater.  I will be on the lookout for something similar though.  The 3/4 length sleeve is just right.  If I were to restart this sweater I would have fractally spun the variegated so has not to have the long concentrations of pooling.  That said, I do love the colors, and the fibers were a dream to spin.

     

     
    • Diane 11:00 pm on November 4, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      It always amazes me to see the starting fibers and the finished product…looks great!

      • knitting1105 11:40 am on November 7, 2014 Permalink | Reply

        This was my first sweater, I wasn’t really sure how it was going to turn out, but I am happy with the results.

    • andresue 9:00 pm on November 6, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      It’s beautiful!

    • knitsbyjenn 10:51 am on November 7, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      Lovely work!

      • knitting1105 11:39 am on November 7, 2014 Permalink | Reply

        Thank you! I think that I have to change the buttons though, they are too heavy for the fabric.

  • knitting1105 12:48 pm on November 2, 2014 Permalink | Reply  

    Indigo and Cochineal 

    At Vogue Knitting Live Chicago last weekend I took an all day class called A Sheep of a Different Color with Rhonda Fargnoli.  My expectations for this class was to see how different sheep breeds take the natural dyes of Indigo and Cochineal.  That was not exactly what we ended up doing.  First we started by winding balls of different yarns, from KnitPicks generic natural “wool”, to cashmere blends, silk blends and flax (why was it called flax and not linen?  I always understood that flax is the plant, and when it is prepared and spun it becomes the fiber linen). This was all done while Rhonda talked and shared information.

    Then, after a bit more talking, about an hour before lunch break, we started knitting little swatches.  This part really could have started earlier, and allowed everyone to knit most of the yarn types up.

    After lunch we returned and Rhonda made up a batch of Indigo and a batch of Cochineal.  For 20 people in the class, it was really not enough, but we all took turns and made do.  Here is the dye baths percolating, they were very beautiful.

    Indigo:

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    Cochineal:

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    The Palmer house meeting rooms are NOT a place to dye any kinds of fibers.  No running water, and ill-suited bathrooms.  I think that the lack of facilities really impacted the effectiveness of this class.  Rhonda had quite a bit of knowledge to share, and she wanted to do it as a hands on class.  The hands on aspect was limited due to the lack of water resources, and proper space for dyeing.  I would take another class with her, but as my friend Jane said, who took a class from her the second day, only if there was running water and a proper heat source.  I would really like a weekend natural dyeing retreat.

    Here are my knitted samples from this class, there was a bit of difference in how the fibers took the colors, especially with the Cochineal.  The linen really took both dyes lovely (bottom left).  One of my cochineal dyes was corrupted by the over abundance of indigo in the rinse bath.  Really should have had 2 different tables set up with their own rinse baths.  And if you were not careful, it was very hard to figure out which swatch was yours.  A better marking system, perhaps as simple as bread ties with names on them and the yarn end wrapped around that.

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    A couple of books were recommended that I have ordered, and I now have a source for natural dyes, Botanical Colors.  My interest is really peaked in continuing to explore this process.  Just in a different place.  And call this class something more true to the nature of it.

     
    • Diane 4:35 pm on November 2, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      Sorry the class wasn’t what you had hoped for, but it was a learning opportunity.

  • knitting1105 3:09 pm on October 29, 2014 Permalink | Reply  

    Two Nancies 

    After a weekend at Vogue Knitting Live, our local yarn shop Knit Nirvana hosted Nancy Bush and Nancy Marchant on Monday evening for show and tell, wine and book signing.  Nancy and Nancy both showed examples from their books in a mini fashion show.  I forgot to take my camera, so consequently these photos are with my cell phone, I took more of people’s feet than anything else!

    Nancy Bush is the Estonian expert; lace, socks and history.  She is a great teacher I have taken classes from her in the past.  Some of these models I have seen prior, but always so worth seeing again.  These are mostly from her book Knitted Lace of Estonia:

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    Nancy Marchant is the Brioche lady.  I was not familiar with her, or her books, but as I was leaving, the thought came to me that I had knit a Brioche hat, and sure enough it was a Nancy Marchant pattern from the Vogue Hats book. ultimate-hat-book

     

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    Brioche is essentially Fisherman’s rib, but with a pattern attached.  Consequently it is very soft and squishy, warm but light weight, and most importantly reversible.  This was made with 2 very different handspun yarns.  I like the purple side facing the best.

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    Here is Nancy showing one of her lovely scarves.  Apologies again for the very poor photo.

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    She has her first book,  Knitting Brioche that was previously published,

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    and a new hot off the presses one that was at the store.  I gave the copy I had in hand to someone else, always other opportunities.

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    Nancy M also has a Brioche scarf in the upcoming Holiday issue of Vogue.  Applying Brioche to lace knitting.

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    A couple of her scarves were with gradients, which got me to thinking….

     
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