Monday, August 15, 2005

Magical Knitting

Today I signed up for a workshop with Cat Bordhi, then looked for a
yahoo group about her designs. Much to my dismay, there isn't one that
I could find. So, in a fit of madness, I started one myself ... LOL.
If you like her work as found at her site , please come to the Magical Knitting Group and join me in my new

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Mystery Shawl Clue 1 (twice!)

You know how sometimes you can't win for trying? Or am I the only one who experiences it? Let me explain.
The Mystery Shawl is underway. I happily knit the first clue, albeit with several visits to the frog pond where there is a virtual picnic going on (waves to other KAL members at the picnic).
I used some Lucy Neatby celestial merino in the Maple Sugar colour. Yummy yarn, yummy colour. This is what it looked like:

The pattern shows up in the photo, but not in real life! The colour variation conflicts with the pattern so they cancel each other out. Unless I plan to wear the shawl over a white shirt, with a spotlight glaring on me at all times, this is not going to work. I fretted for a day, slept on it, then ripped it out. (Yep, you heard me. I ripped 'er).

Back to the drawing board. I had some fabulous local yarn in my stash. It is called Blooming Yarns, hand dyed in Nova Scotia for Tangled Skeins. 2 ply Kid Mohair/Silk, the softest most delicious yarn I've seen/felt yet. I love this stuff! So, here is Clue 1 again, in Blooming Yarns this time:

Note how the pattern does not show up in the photo, nor do the colours which are an amazing blend of pale pinks to dark pinks to to orange and back again. But, in real life, the patterns and colour compliment each other nicely. Honest. You have to believe me.

On to clue 2.

Oh, and clue 3 is due out tomorrow.


Sunday, August 7, 2005

Gracie Knitting Bag

This began life as a hand bag but soon morphed into the more comfortable role of knitting bag. She is made of 100% cotton fabric with a velcro closure and is long enough to hold straight needles. There are 6 pockets inside, and an ingenious sleeve along the bottom to hold an insert of acrylic to make it sturdy. I used a piece of heavy interfacing as the insert. The pattern can be ordered at Lazy Girl Designs or maybe in your local quilt store. The designer, Joan Hawley, has many wonderful bag designs. Gracie is just my current favourite. Video directions for the bag can be seen at QNN, just check the schedule for air time.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

My Back Tack Goodies

Well, wasn't I just spoiled rotten! My Back Tack pal outdid herself, making a fabulous needle case for me and including some HANDMADE NEEDLES!!! Isn't that just awesome! The case also included scissors, a handy ruler, a knitting notebook and the cutest pouch containing stich markers. Then, as if that wasn't enough, she made really pretty earrings (that I was wearing when taking photos so didn't get a pic this time) and the art piece shown in the photo with the needle case.
I'm thrilled to pieces with this. Thank you Back Tack pal!!!

Saturday, July 2, 2005

Back Tack Swap

The Back Tack project involved receiving supplies from a stranger, making a sewing noticn from those supplies and sending the completed item to yet another stranger.

What fun this was!

Here is the collection of supplies sent for me to use.

I made a box, a sewing machine needle case and a knitting needle case (of homemade felt!). My recipient like to knit and sew, and garden, so I tried to cover all three. Those are ladiebugs and doodlebugs crawling up the knitting needle case.

Here the cases are opened up.

The needle case pattern can be found here.

Friday, July 1, 2005

More flared smoke ring info

Hello again,
Here is the link to the pattern, as promised: Other smoke ring patterns can be found there too.

I knit mine using Elsbeth Lavold Silky Wool. Since I am petite, I reduced the ring by one pattern repeat (ie. I cast on less stitches than called for in the pattern) and I just knit until the length suited me. The Silky Wool goes a long way. I used just one skein! So the project was very economical (a skein of Silk Wool sells for $10 Canadian around here.) The pattern was easy to follow. This was the first ever lace project for me, so I did have to tink back several times. Silky Wool is very forgiving and easy to tink with. It also feels very nice against the skin.

I plan to make many more of these!

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Flared Smoke Ring

Hi everyone, I'm back briefly. The surgery went well and I'm recovered, although all my sight hasn't come back yet. My surgeon tells me I must have patience, that it takes time to heal. I asked him to write me a prescription for patience. He did't find that amusing ...

Thanks to everyone who sent cards and emails of encouragement. I appreciated them muchly!

More regular posting will resume sometime during the long weekend. In the meantime, someone asked me to post a photo of the Flared Smoke Ring, so here it is.
I will dig up the link to the pattern, and also photograph the one I made, and post both here on the weekend. I made one in turquoise Silky Wool, but half the width. I just love it.

Monday, May 9, 2005

Going Silent

I've been really busy with work, namely - funding proposals, hosting a Luncheon for 200 people, and travelling around the province giving workshops and speeches. Starting this Thursday my schedule showed signs of slowing down, so I could get my life back. But, just when I planned to start blogging more regularly, life threw a curve ball. A few hours ago I found out I have a detached retina, and must have eye surgery tomorrow morning. I'm having laser surgery to fix a tear, plus that procedure where they inject a gas bubble into your eye so it can push the retina back into place. I pleaded to be put to sleep for it so I don't have to watch needles coming towards my eye, and they agreed. Whew! Anyway, I'll be unable to read, knit, sew, etc for about a week, and can't drive for two weeks. Yikes! My back-tack package will be mailed when I'm on my way to the hospital.
I'll be back!

Monday, April 18, 2005

Back Tack!!

I'm in - are you?
Go here for the fun

Saturday, April 2, 2005

Clapotis - the slim version

Posted by Hello

The yarn I used is Phoenix soy silk from South West Trading Company in the colour called I Candy. This yarn is fabulous to work with. It is very easy on the hands and the colours are vibrant. It is a ribbon yarn, so when I was using it I felt like I was knitting with shoelaces, but in a good way :) The stitches dropped with ease. My scarf drapes beautifully. I only had two skeins of the Phoenix, so i made Clapotis slimmer than the pattern, but I love it anyway.

Posted by Hello

Sunday, March 27, 2005

Easter Boxes

Posted by Hello

I made these boxes to hold the Easter treats for my sister and her family. They were a hit! Fabric boxes are from this book.

Hint: use Fast2Fuse instead of the regular Timtex. This eliminates a step because Fast2Fuse has the fusible webbing on both sides.

Friday, March 25, 2005

Button Bag

Posted by Hello

Isn't she cute? This is a free pattern from here , at Mason Dixon knitting.

I used Lamb's Pride by Brown Sheep, the bulky version, DOUBLED. That's right, the yarn is doubled. So, this knits up really, really, quickly into a sturdy bag. I use it to carry my lunch and my knitting to work whenever I don't need to have the corporate briefcase look.

Cute as a button!

Sunday, March 13, 2005

Hmmm. Maybe I should go back to school...

The first few questions are very easy but the last few are very difficult.

You can take the test here

You scored 100% Beginner, 100% Intermediate, 93% Advanced, and 61% Expert!
You have an extremely good understanding of beginner, intermediate, and advanced level commonly confused English words, getting at least 75% of each of these three levels' questions correct. This is an exceptional score. Remember, these are commonly confused English words, which means most people don't use them properly. You got an extremely respectable score.

Thank you so much for taking my test. I hope you enjoyed it!

For the complete Answer Key, visit my blog:

Sunday, January 30, 2005

'Wool Gathering"

I'm reading a book by Rose Tremain called "Music & Silence". It is historical fiction set in the court of Denmark in the 1600's. This passage appears on page 10:

Queen Sofie ... loved to be rowed in a little boat to an island "and there sit in the sunshine and indulge in secret in her passion for knitting. This activity had been proscribed throughout the land as tending to induce in women an idle trance of mind, in which their proper thoughts would fly away and be replaced by fancy. Men called this state 'wool gathering'. That the wool itself could be fashioned into useful articles of haberdashery such as stockings or night bonnets made them no less superstitiously afraid of the knitting craze. They believed that any knitted night bonnet might contain among its million stitches the longings of their wives that they could never satisfy and which in consequence would give them nightmares of the darkest kind."

Saturday, January 22, 2005

Flowers are forever

Experimenting with Reverse Bloom wash cloths from the Weekend Knitting book. Posted by Hello

The peach and cream flower is made of very inexpensive dishcloth cotton, which I dislike because my fingers hurt while knitting with it. However, the finished product is soft.

The bright pink flower to the left of it is made with Rowan cotton tape. (colour 549) I modified the pattern to make each petal smaller because I was worried about running out of yarn. The flower you see here took exactly one skein of the cotton tape. This was much easier to knit with than the dish cloth cotton and is very soft to use. I got the Rowan on sale, but still it was 6 times more expensive than the dish cloth cotton.

The tiny blue flower WIP is made with a very thin silky cotton by Schoeller Esslinger called "Palma". I bought it for really cheap at a big box craft store (shhhh). I think it is discontinued. The gauge is much smaller, obviously, so the flower will be smaller. This suits me just fine, since the others are a bit big to use as face cloths. The cost of this yarn is between the Rowan and the dish cloth cotton.

The pattern in the book is extremely clear and well written. These flowers are a joy to knit, especially when storm-stayed due to blizzard conditions. In fact, we are under a blizzard warning again today. This will be the 3rd major storm in 8 days. Hmmm, it must be winter :)

Thursday, January 20, 2005

"W" stands for "wrong"

Each mosaic square is a photo of an American service man or woman who has been killed in Iraq, in the war that violates international law. The original mosaic in larger sizes can be found here: Posted by Hello

Sunday, January 16, 2005

Canadian, eh

You Know You're From Canada When...

You're not offended by the term, "Homo Milk."

You understand the phrase, "Could you pass me a serviette, I just dropped my poutine, on the chesterfield."

You eat chocolate bars, not candy bars.

You drink pop, not soda.

You know what a Mickey and 2-4 mean.

You don't care about the fuss with Cuba. It's a cheap place to go for your holidays, with good cigars.

You know that a pike is a type of fish, not part of a highway.

You drive on a highway, not a freeway.

You have Canadian Tire money in your kitchen drawers.

You know that Casey and Finnegan were not part of a Celtic musical group.

You get excited whenever an American television show mentions Canada.

You brag to Americans that: Shania Twain, Jim Carrey, Celine Dion and many more are Canadians.

You know that the C.E.O. of American Airlines is a Canadian!

You know what a touque is.

You know that the last letter of the English alphabet is always pronounced "Zed" not "Zee".

You understand the Labatt Blue commercials.

You know how to pronounce and spell "Saskatchewan."

You perk up when you hear the theme song from "Hockey Night in Canada."

You were in grade 12, not the 12th grade.

"Eh?" is a very important part of your vocabulary and more polite than, "Huh?"

Winter. Whenever you want it. And then some.

There's German food, Italian food, Chinese food, Armenian food, American food, but NO Canadian food.

You call a "mouse" a "moose".

You like the Americans a little because they don't want Quebec either.

Contests run by anyone other than the government have "skill-testing questions" that winners must answer correctly before they can claim a prize.

Everything is labelled in English and French.

Milk comes in plastic bags as well as cartons and plastic jugs.

Mountain Dew has no caffeine.

You actually get these jokes and pass them on to other friends from Canada.

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Lucky Winner

There were only three entrants in the yarn draw. I wrote each name on a separate piece of paper fanned them in my hand like cards, then asked my husband to draw one. He made a big production of choosing but finally settled on one and drew the winner. And the yarn goes to ..... Dorothy! Woo Hoo! Congratulations! Please send me your mailing address on the private email so I can pop this in the mail to you, k? Thanks to everyone for playing along.

That's all and Good Night.

Sunday, January 9, 2005

Left Overs

Blue Loretta was made for my mom-in-law for Christmas. By all accounts, she likes it. (We live thousands of miles apart, so I didn't get to see her open it). Anyway, notice the lack of fringe. As a result, I have yarn left over and wish to give it away. Scroll past the photo for details. Posted by Hello

The yarn is a boucle, from Bernat, called Illusions: 98% acrylic, 2% polyester. Each skein is 5 oz. or 140 g. The main colour is multiple blues with flecks of green, called "Carnival". The contrast colour is navy blue. Each skein is 195 yards, or 178 meters. Go here for yarn details and a better photo of the colours on the Bernat site

I am giving away 4 full skeins of the multi blue and a half skein of the navy blue. If you want this yarn, just leave me a comment and I'll add you to the draw. Entries will be accepted until midnight EST on Monday, January 10. Winner to be announced sometime Tuesday.