Showing posts from January, 2016

WIP Wednesday: January 27, 2016

Sekret Knitting:

What was sweater #2 is now sweater #1:  Both sleeves are done and joined to the body.  I'm working the raglan shaping/decreases and have 5 more sets of those to go - so almost there.  Once those are done, I'll have the collar and front bands to knit and then the sample will be finished!What was sweater #3 is now sweater #2: I've swatched this and got spot-on where I wanted to be after blocking, so I just need to wind some yarn and get this one on the needles this weekend to get started.  Woot!Personal Knitting: I've worked 14 of the 16 suggested chart repeats on my Hogmanay shawl, so I'm nearing the finish line on this.  I'm planning on working on this tonight at Knit Nite and will maybe try to get it finished up this weekend.  Currently it looks like:
Still knitting self-striping sock samples.  I suspect that won't change for a while since I'm trying out new colorways as I develop them.  Right now, I've got the March Colors of New Mex…

2016 Reading Challenge: Week Four

This week, I read What She Left.  This book wasn't exactly what I thought it was going to be.  I thought it was going to be a kind of fond, bittersweet memory of a young woman who died too young.  Instead, it was a downer of a book with a lot of navel gazing and psychobabble and was totally NOT my kind of book.  I finished it, but that's about all I can say for it.  None of the characters had any redeeming qualities that I could find - lots of drug use, nasty little secrets and generally a bunch of people I wouldn't want to spend time with in real life, and I sure as hell didn't want to spend one more minute with in my reading time either.  Ugh.

For this week, I needed a little palate cleanser, so I opted to go with Reader's Choice and grabbed a novel about Mozart's mistress, an English opera singer - Vienna Nocturne.  I started this already and am enjoying it.  Much more "me".  :)

The 2016 List
1.A book you meant to read in 2015, but didn't
2.A bo…

Spinning Friday: January 22, 2016

This week, I spun up the Wooly Wonka Fibers January fiber club - Starry Night.  All of the club colorways this year are based on great works of art and January's club is based on Van Gogh's Starry Night painting.

The fiber is 100% Falkland wool, which is a great multi-use fiber, IMHO.  Not as soft as merino, but still plenty soft for most applications, and it does wear a bit better as the staple length is slightly longer.  Here's the roving before I spun it up.

One of the Ravelry groups I'm in (the Spin 16 in 2016 group) has a challenge for January to spin singles, so I decided I'd do that.  I don't spin singles and leave them unplied very often, but I did so for this braid.

I spun up 262 yards/4 oz of a DK-weight yarn that looks like:

I think my plan for the yarn is to work up a pair of loosely knit mittens and then felt them down to fit, to make a nice, densely warm pair of mittens.
I've started my next spin already too - more FatCatKnits club fibers.  T…

WIP Wednesday: January 20, 2016

Sekret Knitting:

Sweater #1: The sample is done!  It's blocked, all the ends are woven in and it's finished.  I just have some number wrassling to finish up and the schematic, and it'll be ready to head off.Sweater #2:  Sleeve #1 is done and I've started sleeve #2.  My hope is to get the second sleeve done no later than Friday and then I can join the body together with the sleeves and knit for the finish line.  Would REALLY like to have this one accomplished by the end of January. Sweater #3:  Swatching for this.  It's mostly stockinette but a new-to-me yarn, so I want to make sure I'm spot on for gauge as I think this one may wind up drooping a bit when worn (lots of alpaca).Personal Knitting: Still working on my Hogmanay handspun shawl.  I am halfway through the 12th pattern repeat - with 16 repeats written into the pattern. I'm 99% sure I'll have enough yardage to get in a 17th repeat, but I want to try to get a few more repeats finished before I decid…

2016 Reading Challenge: Week Three

This week, I read Margaret Atwood's Alias Grace, for the week 38's topic: A book about an anti-hero.  You might recognize Margaret Atwood's name as the author behind The Handmaid's Tale, and while her voice is definitely recognizable in this work, it's a very different story than that dystopian one.  The book is based on the actual trial and notes of Grace Marks.  It is based on the trial of Grace and James McDermott (her alleged co-conspirator in murder and lover) in 1843 Toronto for the murders of their employer and his mistress.  Each main chapter has a quote from a contemporary interview with Grace - either trial transcripts or from interviews with her after she was imprisoned.  She originally was sentenced to death by hanging (which as the fate of James McDermott), but that sentence was changed to life imprisonment.  The chapters tell the story of her childhood up to and including the murders and her time in prison and the lunatic asylum after she was arrested…

Spinning Friday: January 15, 2016

Wow - it's been a month since I've done a Spinning Friday post.  Go grab some tea or other hot beverage - I've got a lot to share today!

I've spun a LOT since the turn of the year.  Most recently, I've finished two 2.5 oz braids that came from FatCatKnits as part of Ginny's 2013 Fairy Tales Club.  I took the first colorway "Angry Dwarf" and separated the lightest parts from the brights, and then spun up 2 small skeins to use for colorwork.  This is a 2-ply sportweight and my plan is to use it for an easy stranded knit hat.

I then took "The Prince" colorway and spun that 2.5 oz braid up into a 2-ply worsted weight that I want to use for a pair of textured fingerless mitts at some point.

Since I'm working from deep stash right now, I grabbed a 75/25 BFL/silk roving from Funky Carolina in the "Austin" colorway.  I originally bought this braid because the colors in it were sort of outside my usual color choices - burnt orange and a…

2016 Book Challenge - Week 2

This week I read Tove Jansson's The Summer Book for my #50 topic - a book originally written in a language other than English. This was a fictionalized memoir of the author's own summers spent with her family on a small island in the gulf of Finland.  The main character, Sophia, is 6 and she and her grandmother have the entire summer together.  The book isn't really plot driven at all.  Each of the chapters is more a little vignette in a moment of their summer together. Sophia's grandmother is stubborn and opinionated - as is Sophia herself.   I enjoyed this little "summer break" reading in the dead of winter.  A bittersweet remembrance of childhood summers - I caught myself remembering lots of moments I spent with my grandmother during the summers I was a kid. (She was also stubborn and opinionated.)  A lovely little book.

I've started my next book, written by Margaret Atwood, Alias Grace.  A VERY different kind of book than The Summer Book.  I'm alr…

WIP Wednesday/New Podcast Episode

If you'd like to cut to the chase to hear what I'm working on, my newest podcast edition is now live on Youtube:

Or you can also catch it on Podbean here.   I'm still working on iTunes.  It does not want to play nicely with my Podbean account and I cannot figure out why.

However, if you are just here for a drive-by recap, here 'tis!

Sekret Knitting:

Sweater #1:  I'm just about ready to put the body on hold so I can begin sleeve #2.  Sleeve #1 is done.  My plan is to try to get sleeve #2 finished this week and get the whole sheebang joined together so I can knit the remainder of the body and yoke. Sweater #2:  I need to get sleeves on the needles this week for this one. Sweater #3: On hold until I finish sweater #1.Personal Knitting: I'm still working away in bits and bobs on various striped sock samples for the shop.I also started Jen Lucas's Hogmanay Shawl out of handspun.  This is for the Handspun KAL I'm hosting for 2016.  I've knit Chart A and now…

2016 Book Challenge - Week 1

Whoosh!  That was the sound of yesterday zipping by, when I had planned to write this blog post about week 1 of the 2016 Reading Challenge.  Better a day late than never tho, eh?

I kicked off my reading for 2016 with The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton.  This is for week 8's theme of "A classic book with less than 200 pages."  I had seen the movie with Daniel Day-Lewis, Michelle Pfeiffer and Winona Ryder eons ago - mostly to drool over the costumes in it - but had not ever read the book.

No real surprises about the ending if you've seen the movie already, but I enjoyed this one more than I thought I would.  It wasn't quite as.....slow going? I suppose?..... as I thought it might be.  Wharton was a member of this upper social class in turn-of-the-century New York and knows whereof she was writing, but the era is far far removed from where we are today in terms of social norms and societal pressures.  (Or at least from where I'm sitting.)

This was a nice sta…