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  • knitting1105 1:40 pm on December 29, 2013 Permalink | Reply  

    Christmas Wishes 


    In addition to Ethan making it home safely from Japan, we had a wonderful time at home with our own little family.  Dan and I did not have extensive Christmas lists, but it was fun to surprise the kids (adults) with gifts.  Most of what they asked for was very practical.


    As always, my list included knitting and spinning related items.  My husband has finally realized that those are the things I want the most, and I have reciprocated with months of reading and listening material for him.  Top of my list were St. Blaise combs, and he came through like a champ with help from Susan’s Fiber Shop!


    In the class with Deb Robson last summer we used these combs, and everyone raved about them.  Some cashmere in my stash is waiting to be processed, will wash that up today and demonstrate the process to Dan.  It is a good thing that these come with a storage system to protect the tines, as they are very sharp.



    Also on my list were 2 books from Annemor Sundbo, Setesdal Sweaters, and Everyday Knitting.  These have been coveted by me for some time, and I was very happy to have received them.  The diminutive size of the books surprised me a bit, but the size beguiles the content.  These will take some time to read through, I love Fair Isle knitting, and these add to my library nicely.  I will review these at a later date.


    A review from Knitters Bookshelf:

    Annemor Sundbø, a native of Setesdal in Norway, has created a fascinating history of a region, a garment, the makers, and the details that place these sweaters in the pantheon of traditional folk garments. Opening the pages of her book is like stepping back in time, with local characters and events of a bygone era. In fact, her photographs of people, places, and advertising are joy to pour over — you’ll find yourself dreaming about these sweaters, so vivid is her presentation of the life behind the design.

    Sundbø not only gives us the history of the “Louse Coat,” but she ends the book with detailed instructions on for the characteristically embroidered plackets and cuffs and a long section of patterns from the historic sweaters throughout the book. If you are an experienced knitter, you will have no trouble converting these patterns into sweaters.


    And another review from Knitter’s Bookshelf of  Everyday Knitting.

    Everyday Knitting is a treasure trove of knitting patterns and cultural history. The author unravels the fascinating history of traditional Norwegian knitting, a story that sprang to life as she explored the storage bins of a wool recycling factory (which she had just purchased in what must have been one of the more amusing real estate transactions in Norwegian history. She was a weaving teacher and had wanted some experience in a full-scale woolen mill — the owner said he’d happily provide the training if she would buy the mill first!)

    The mill produced batting from recycled wool obtained by shredding old woolen knit garments. As Annemor went through her new holdings, she realized how much history was being lost in those shredding machines and how very important it was to recapture some of it.

    The result was this wonderful, beautiful book which has everything a knitter, garment designer or cultural historian could every want. There are patterns that go back to the beginnings of Norwegian knitting and beyond; a thorough discussion of all stages of knitting in Norway; there are photographs of some rescued knit treasures — amazing socks, gloves, caps, sweaters; old photos showing these sweaters in daily life; instructions and advice on how to go about recreating these masterpieces of beauty and practicality, or using the motifs and patterns to create something new with something old.


    Of course, there is always some new Architecture book to add to my collection.  Barry Byrne was a contemporary of Frank Lloyd Wright’s, and carried the “Prairie School” theme out much longer than he.  This book was just published this year.  Much like knitting books, the market is smaller, and books do not stay in print long, thus gaining in value.  Must get them while you can!




    Every knitter should also have one of these, forgot to add it to my list, perhaps next year!!


  • knitting1105 8:32 pm on December 18, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , sock patterns   

    Goodbye Cookie, and Cookies 

    My last shipment from the CookieA sock club, of which I have been a member for the past 3 years, arrived a couple of days ago.  As Part of the club, every other month Cookie sends a skein of custom dyed yarn from an Indy dyer, 2 different sock patterns, and 2 cookie recipes.  Over the past 3 years, I have enjoyed trying out different yarns that either I had not heard of, or were not available to me.  Most of them I liked, and I have stayed true to the club and knit one of the sock patterns for that month with the given yarn.  There still remains a couple of past patterns/yarn that need to be knit up.  The cookies, I have tried a few recipes, but since I was the only one eating sweets, I did not bake up most of them.  However, I did make Madelines, and loved them.

    This pattern that was from August 2013, Artemis, and the sock yarn is from Miss Babs, color: Inkwell.  I love, love, love the color of this yarn, and the yarn knits up very nicely.  The socks are recently finished just in time for my husband for Christmas, used almost every last inch.  The pattern, however, is not a favorite, I find it to be very uninspiring, I could have come up with cables on the leg and a twisted rib foot section.  Normally, Cookie’s patterns have an intricate flow to them, the pattern proceeds onto the foot, and the heel is incorporated, something was missing from this one.  Knitting it up firmed my resolve to stop the club, save some money, and work with what I have.  While my husband will love them and the color is beautiful, I find this the most disappointing pattern of her’s that I have knit to date.


    A detail shot of the cables on the leg, 2 bands of slightly different width’s and repeats around the circumference.


    Pattern: Artemis
    Pattern Source: Cookie A’s Sock Club 2013, August pattern
    Yarn: Miss Bab’s Cosmic Fingering Yarn, color Inkwell
    Needles: US 1
    Date Started: 11/?/12
    Date Finished: 12/18/13
    Finished Dimensions: Men’s size large

    Tanis Fiber Arts, the last shipment of yarn for me from the club, arrived a few days ago.  Last year I received a skein from this dyer as a birthday present that is begging to be knit up.  This color is right up my alley, and I like the pattern, so these will be for me.  Casting on after the Christmas knitting is finished.   Being in the club for 3 years has been great, Cookie is a great designer, and her attention to detail is phenomenal, hardly a mistake in the patterns, and when found they were corrected in short order.  That said, I am seeing some repeats of designs. While the club was fun, it is time to use up some of the yarn in my stash, finish up past CookieA club knitting, go to my newest sock book for inspiration, finish up some Janel Laidman socks from her past club, and try designing some of my own socks.


    Ironic that I am saying goodbye to Cookie at the same time that my new Dr put me on a Gluten/Dairy/Refined Sugar free diet.  No more cookies for the time being.  I am embracing this new diet, and feel if I can make it through the holidays, I am clear sailing.  You might just see some of the great new recipes that I have been trying here also.

  • knitting1105 3:44 pm on December 17, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , fair Is, , ,   

    Now I can show you! 

    Now I am able to brag blog about these gifts that I sent out to Ria.


    The first was a Baby Surprise Jacket that I knit using some of my early handspun.  Mrs. Peterson was visiting and gave me the idea last summer, and I do think that it came out well.  Jill skyped with me when they were opening the presents, and it fits Ria perfectly.  She, however, was only interested in trying to eat the buttons.



    Pattern: Baby Surprise jacket
    Pattern Source: The Opinionated Knitter (book)
    Yarn: Handspun from early spinning days
    Needles: US 6
    Date Started: 8/8/13
    Date Finished: 8/19/13
    Finished Dimensions: 58″ wide x 32″ deep

    The second sweater was a Dale of Norway, my go-to for baby gifts, they are just so beautiful.  This is a bright pink and tangerine, with bright accents.  Will look beautiful with her gorgeous dark coloring.





    Pattern: #14206 Dale of Norway Pattern
    Pattern Source: Booklet #142
    Yarn: Dale of Norway Baby Ull
    Needles: US 1 & 2
    Date Started: 8/8/13
    Date Finished: 8/19/13
    Finished Dimensions: 12-24 months

    And lastly, this was an SOS from my sister Diane who was out the past couple of weeks taking care of Ria, a walk on a cool day necessitated some mittens for her hands.  Apparently, hard to come by in California.  I was hoping that these would fit, since I had no little models here to try them on, and they were the perfect size (she is 6 months old).  These were so fun to make, it is a free pattern from Knituition.  I changed the pattern on the back of the mitts to match the edge on the front, and to avoid long float carries every other row.  These will definitely be on my “to knit for new babies” list.



    Pattern: Nordic Baby Mitts
    Pattern Source: Free from Knituition
    Yarn: Dale of Norway Baby Ull, blue and mint green
    Needles: US 2
    Date Started: 8/8/13
    Date Finished: 8/19/13
    Finished Dimensions: baby 6-9 months

    My extra special knitted wrapping paper held the 2 sweaters, I save this only for special hand knit goods.  It was a birthday gift from a friend a couple of years ago, I wish that I could find more…


    • Mrs Peterson 8:58 pm on January 4, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      I have been very sick, and just now catching up on your awesome projects. I LOVE the BSJ in that color– very sophisticated for an SF baby! And those mitts are adorable.


      • knitting1105 5:08 pm on January 5, 2014 Permalink | Reply

        Thanks! Sorry to hear that you have been sick, sucks especially during the holidays. Thanks to you for suggesting I use my chunkier early handspun for the BSJ jacket. just saw some photos of her wearing them and it is a very cute sweater.


    • Patti Cappell 9:36 pm on October 20, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      I am having such a hard time finding this pattern. It is JUST BEAUTIFUL!!! Can you help me find the pattern?


      • knitting1105 7:49 pm on October 22, 2014 Permalink | Reply

        Which pattern are you referring to? All of them have links to the pattern source in the notes below the pattern.


  • knitting1105 6:21 pm on December 5, 2013 Permalink | Reply  

    More cuteness! 

    Fair time for my 2 lovely nieces sporting some wonderful Aunt Frances originals.

    This dress and sweater were blogged about here.  I really think that the “heels” make the outfit!


    And this sweater was made for beautiful Ria, it was the last thing my mother saw me knit, and she loved it.


    • Diane Hamilton 6:44 pm on December 5, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      OMG! Riley is such a hoot–the dress and sweater are very cute and I just had the pleasure of seeing Ms. Ria model this sweater. It is absolutely Jill’s favorite sweater to put on Ria and she looks beautiful in it!


  • knitting1105 12:26 pm on December 2, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Christmas card, Gifts   

    Making of a Star 

    This star was made by me and the kids about 20+ years ago.  My mother taught us how to make these out of old Christmas cards when we were kids. It was really interesting to see how the graphics have changed from this star to the one we just made.  The more current cards have much more vibrant colors, graphics are more generic, less Christian.


    Over this past weekend, Sofia and I made a new star for her.  I have been saving the front of Christmas cards for the past couple of years.  We don’t get as many as previously, not as many people send out cards in general, or they are letters or photos.


    First I redrafted the pattern, this should print out to scale.  From top to bottom is 5″

    Star Templates

    Copy this pattern onto a stiff cardboard or plastic, such as quilting templates. Cut out evenly, I used an xacto knife and straight edge to get it perfect..


    Then, with cards that I had been saving up, Sofia first transferred the large 6-sided  template onto a card, and then the diamond shape centered on that.  Using a ball point pen gives a crisp edge which comes in handy when bending back the tabs. You will need 60 cutouts.




    Bend back the tabs on all of the 60 cutouts to give 60 diamonds with tabs.  Sometimes the cardstock is too heavy to bend back evenly, I then score them with an xacto knife and straight edge, just don’t cut deep, only a light surface score is necessary.


    The first step is to glue 3 diamonds together, 20 sets of these.  Good old Elmer’s glue works the best, and dries clear at the edge if there is a little bit of overspill.  Let them lay flat to dry completely.  The card on the left is from a card my sister Jill sent one year, I can tell from the writing and portions of the note left.



    Next fold them up into a point, glue the tabs together and allow to dry completely.  We used large paperclips to hold them together when needed, some of the cardstock is more porous than others.


    I glue 5 sets of points together, 3 sections, leaving the last 5 points as singles.


    Glue the 3 large sections together.


    Add the last points in one at a time.  The very last is the hardest and most tedious.


    And a finished star.  Just waiting for glitter glue on all the joints, to hide any mistakes, strengthen the star and add a touch of pizzazz.

  • knitting1105 1:25 pm on December 1, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: ,   

    On the Move… 

    A sweater in action.  Made this for my friend’s granddaughter when she was born.  I like to make baby gifts bigger so that they last longer.  This was a special treat, as they stopped by to show me the sweater on her.

    Dale of Norway pattern of course!









    • J Winstein 2:40 pm on December 1, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      I gotta get me some granddaughters too !!!


      • knitting1105 2:54 pm on December 1, 2013 Permalink | Reply

        For the sweaters or just because they are cute?!


    • Nicky 1:18 am on December 5, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      Whyat uis the name of this pattern ?
      I would love to knit one of these.


    • Manning 2:26 pm on December 5, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      Oh man is that cute. We are trying to talk Franklin into wearing his Frances sweater one last time to see Santa, so we can have a full photo series. Actually I want him to keep wearing it each year until it just can’t fit at all anymore.


      • knitting1105 4:09 pm on December 7, 2013 Permalink | Reply

        I cannot believe that he still fits into the sweater. I love it!


        • Manning 5:59 pm on December 7, 2013 Permalink

          The sweater still “fits”. The sleeves are just below his elbows! 😉


    • Pam Risher 3:13 pm on December 7, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      These are GREAT! Stella is gorgeous and so is the sweater!


      • knitting1105 7:51 pm on December 8, 2013 Permalink | Reply

        Thanks Pam! And thanks for finally looking at my blog!!!!


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