Knitting Update

I am pleased to announce a finished object.  Swing Swing, knit in Blue Lapis Valley Yarns Colrain was finished Tuesday night during the Dancing with the Stars finale.

As you may recall, I was concerned that I would have sufficient yarn.  I had stopped short on the bottom of the sweater, and put the yarn skein in a baggie, which I pinned to the sweater.  Each sleeve took a skein and a half, which seemed to be on schedule.  However, the pattern required me to step out on faith, block it, sew up the facings, then pick up the collar stitches.  There was nothing for it but to go ahead and knit the sweater hem to a decent completion.

All was well.  I still have between half and a third of a skein, and the blocking was a dream.  The swing panels coaxed out to their full glory without protest.

DH had given me a blue beaded shawl pin (based on a kilt pin style) several years ago.  It is such a perfect closure for the neckline of Swing Swing that it will simply live on the sweater.  Happy, happy! 

No,  really I’m happy.  The scowl is just the sun in my eyes.  Sorry about that.

My current recorded book is Knitting, by Anne Bartlett.  Here is the summary from my public library’s listing:

“It’s been ten months since Jack died, and Sandra, a tightly wound academic, copes with her grief by immersing herself in the history of textiles. When she and Martha, a gifted knitter, meet over an unconscious body on the footpath, the unlikely threads of their lives tangle into each other. Sandra invites Martha to join her in a professional collaboration, but what begins as a working relationship becomes something deeply personal. Martha seems at ease with herself, in spite of her own experience of grief. But what does she carry around in those three large bags?”

This book is certainly darker than Blossom Street or even the Friday Night Knitting Club takes on a knitting novel.  Yet I have been unable to walk away from listening to this one while I knit.

My public library subscribes to the OverDrive Media program, and it has been a joy to both work with and listen to.  Check out your library listings – they may have an eMedia program, too.

Knitting news from the lakeside

I have made much knitting progress here this weekend.  First, the Basic Cabled Sock is now a finished object. (Sounds of finished object dance, happy, happy!) The pattern was easy to work with, making it a good project to carry in my purse.  The Fleece Artist Somoko (65% merino, 20% kid mohair, 10% nylon, and 5% silk) was beautifully dyed and yummy to knit with.

The socks are a beautiful, rich brown (colorway Midnight), which makes it difficult to show you the cable detail.  Here I have fiddled with the exposure to show the cable.  The color is true in the first picture, though.

Swing Swing has gotten a lot of knit time while I listen to books (book note to follow).  I got into a bit of a defensive mode as I neared the bottom of the sweater body. There were five skeins left, and  I still needed  to knit both sleeves, finish the neck, and hopefully add a little more length to the body.  I removed the Knit Picks needle tips,  put on cable caps, and placed the remaining yarn in a sandwich bag.  The yarn then was pinned to the bottom of the sweater for ease in handling. The A-line of the bottom of the sweater doesn’t show because it is contained by the cable caps.  Once released it will flare out the way the sleeve does.

Now that I have knit one sleeve, which took a skein and a half, I am encouraged that I will have enough yarn.  However, I shant be foolish:  I’ll do the second sleeve and neck before lengthening the body.

Audio books have added much joy to my weekend, and made the knitting fly.  Thanks to a tip in an AARP Bulletin, I went looking for Overdrive Media.  It is a free, down-loadable book service, like the Audiobooks one could purchase.  There was a link to search for libraries in your area that offer Overdrive, and oh, joy, mine does!

My first download was Death of a Witch by M. C. Beaton.  It’s a Hamish Macbeth mystery, and the reader does a fine job of bringing all the characters to life.  I just loved being read to while I knit, so I also heard  Debbie Macomber’s Twenty Wishes (book 4 in the Blossom Street series).  It did not disappoint!  In fact, I have an e-hold on book 5, which is to be available May 1.

Easter Weekend

First and foremost, both the 8:30 and 10:00 am church services went off without a flaw.  I was so grateful that my musical offerings were what I had hoped for, and I “didn’t let the side down”.  Afterwards, at coffee hour, I told Fr. Chad that this week was like a “month of Sundays”, with the four services.  No wonder I spent so much of the last two weeks in rehearsal.

Knitting did happen, in between times on the organ bench.  I’ve managed to get a sock and 3/4 done of Brainylady’s Basic Cabled Sock. The yarn is Fleece Artist Somoko, the Midnight colorway, and is one of the skeins that I purchased from Loopy Ewe in St. Louis, MO on our October trip.  I really like the fact that the gusset grows out of the cable on each side.

Meezermeowmy has never been known as a monogamous knitter, so of course I had to start a new project.  (We’re going to Disneyworld in early May, and I’m trying to get projects to a good stage for travel knitting.)  When Swing Swing showed up in the Winter 2008 issue of Knotions, it was love at first sight.  I ordered the Colrain yarn that day, in Blue Lapis.  It’s been calling to me ever since; once I got past the heel of the second Basic Cabled Sock I felt I could cast on. Last night I got past the divide for the sleeves, and today I knit the first cable twists.  The yarn is 50% Merino/50% Tencel, and is a yummy knit.  As expected, the Merino is soft, soft, soft, and the Tencel makes for a fluid drape.  After this 16 rows increases occur to create the A-line.  They must be kept in pattern, and will require more of my attention.  Whiskers crossed!