Summertime, and the knittin’ is easy

POP Blanket – Loving it!

I sat in the shade under the blossoming weigela tree, the birds were sing-songing and the sun shone relentlessly.  A cool glass of lemonade within arm’s reach at all times, I knit away the hours.  This is an accurate description of how I spent my entire weekend.  No joke.  It was heaven on earth.  I prepared no meals, did no housework (except for unloading the dishwasher once and running a load of laundry on Sunday afternoon) and the only exertion my brain suffered was calculating how much more yarn I was going to need to finish my POP Blanket and wondering what DH was going to make me for dinner.  (Don’t worry, I know exactly how lucky I am.)

POP is gorgeous and one of my very most favourite projects ever.  I had never knit with Noro before so Kureyon was my baptism.  I had always thought it just too scratchy for a delicate flower such as myself.  But in fact, Kureyon is really quite lovely, especially after blocking.  And the colours are  Urban Yarns in Edgemont has a good selection of colours, by the way, along with lots of Cascade Ecological Wool in cream for the background colour.  Even though it’s lovely and summery right now, part of me is looking forward to fall and my Sunday afternoon naps, snuggled under POP.

So far, I’ve completed almost 30 squares and they’re blocking out to be about 5¾” square.  I’ll probably make at least 35 (5 squares x 7 squares).  We’ll see how big it turns out.

Pop in progress – FYI blocking these squares uses a LOT of T-pins!


Yarn Harlot tonight

Knit Social is presenting Stephanie Pearl-McPhee (aka the Yarn Harlot) at the Vancouver Public Library downtown today – she’s given two classes (afternoon and evening) called Knitting for Speed and Efficiency.  She also gave a talk last night called “This is Your Brain on Knitting” which, by all accounts was hugely entertaining. I’m not the slowest knitter in the world but will surely benefit from kicking it up a notch.

My queue and stash are expanding exponentially every year and unless I can speed up a little, I’ll never manage to finish everything on my list before I go to the big LYS in the sky.  (Which is far from imminent, but still.  Oh, can you imagine what the yarn store in heaven is like?  My guess is there is a great deal of cashmere.  Sigh.  Assuming that’s where I’m going, of course.)  I did a little calculating and even if I’m reincarnated three or four times, I’ll likely never live long enough to use up all my yarn or knit everything in my queue.

Which reminds me:  Knit Social will be opening up class registration for this October’s Knit City at 8:00 a.m. on August 1.  I’m thinking of registering for the Two Socks in One class.  The idea of making two socks at the same time, one inside the other, is intriguing.  And providing one doesn’t screw it up too much, could be faster than doing them one at a time.  Click the poster below from the Knit Social website for info.

Hetty’s Sunday Cuffs – Thank you to Lady Alice

Another finished object for the pile:  Hetty’s Sunday Cuffs, the cover project from the splendiferous Summer 2012 issue of Jane Austen Knits.  The very thoughtful and fellow Queen-adoring Lady Alice brought me a tin of Fortnum & Mason’s special Jubilee tea from her recent trip to Ye Olde Londontown.  She would brook no recompense so I was forced to knit her something in appreciation.  Thus, Hetty’s Sunday Cuffs.  In Spud & Chloë’s beautiful Fine yarn, they are just the thing for a card-carrying Jane Austen Society member to be worn when reading in bed on a winter’s eve.  Nothing worse than having damned chilly wrists when one is trying to enjoy a little Sense and Sensibility.

Hetty’s Sunday Cuffs in Spud & Chloe Fine

Fortnum & Mason’s Jubilee Tea





Update. Or, how I’m single-handedly keeping the economy afloat by buying more yarn and magazines.

OMG, I have been so delinquent in posting.  Of course I always think of something clever to say while I’m lying in bed trying to fall asleep at night but when I’m awake and within arm’s reach of the computer, I’m either too wrapped up in other stuff or can’t think of a damn thing to say that anyone would be remotely interested in reading.

New Yarn!

Anyone, while I’m here, I may as well tell you about my awesome purchases made today at the Circle Craft Christmas Market down at the new and rather cavernous convention centre.  I looked at a bunch of exhibitors but my main purpose for going was to see Trish Moon at Indigo Moon Yarns to show her the Terpander Socks I made from her Goldfinch yarn and snap up some more of her delicious sock yarn.  Here’s today’s booty – n.b. they’re all 100% merino superwash fingering weight and all at discount prices.  Thanks again Trish!

Gabriola Green (at least I think that’s the shade)
Milk Chocolate
Logwood Purple

New magazines – Jane Austen Knits and Knit.Wear

Also, after stocking Urban Yarns, I finally got my hands on a copy of Jane Austen Knits.  I have two words:  absolutely glorious!  I love practically everything in it.  Two more words:  love it!

I also found a copy, also at Urban Barns, of the much-coveted Knit.Wear.  For this one, I have four words:  Spec-tac-u-lar!!  I adore the cover wrap and virtually all the other patterns.  Everything is so classic, yet chic and wonderful.

That is all for now.  Get back to your knitting!!

Back in Action

I have no idea what happened to the last month and a half. Christmas was a complete blur. The only thing I remember from it are the gorgeous Tiffany bracelet my husband gave me and the magnificent turkey dinner I whipped up for the fam. I had the time off between Christmas and New Years and those 11 days were like a gift from the gods. Somewhere around 2:30 on the Sunday before I had to go back to work, I realized that my dreamy vacation was about to end. I was so underwhelmed at the idea that I had to lie down and take a nap.

My knitting has been proceeding, albeit at a slightly slower pace than usual. My excitement at returning to work after my holidays led to being late for my usual bus every morning, resulting in catching the next one which is almost always packed to the gills which results in having to stand the whole way downtown. I can knit standing up on a lurching bus providing it’s a straightforward knit on at least 5 mm needles. So I decided to catch up on my reading during my commute. The fantastic Too Close to the Falls by Catherine Gildener was a perfect standing bus-ride companion. When that was done, I started the next bookclub selection, The Cellist of Sarajevo. Ready to knit publicly again, I’ve started a new commuting project, Lisa Chemery’s Tiered Baby Coat using some Needful Yarns Bambini Soft I had leftover from Duck Soup Hooded Cardigan. The only problem is that it’s such a fast knit, I’m almost finished! It’s a gift for someone at work. Finally, after great rafts of baby boys, someone is having a girl. Yippee!

While in Courtenay this past weekend, I stopped in at the delightfully friendly and well-stocked Uptown Yarns and picked up a couple of skeins of Berroco Vintage in a lovely ivory as well as a skein of Simply Sock by local dyer Sweatermaker in a yummy green/gold shade.

I also bought the new Debbie Bliss and Knitscene magazines. In Debbie Bliss, I like the Draped Cardigan and Simple Jacket with Pockets. Also, there are a few very nice baby projects: the Entrelac Blanket with Cable and Moss Stitch Hat, Classic Baby Cardi and the adorable Pleat Neck Tunic and Sun Dress. The Knitscene mag has a couple of nice things too: Aegean Mitts, Furled Leaf Socks, Conifer Shawl and the Geodesic Cardigan.

Anyhoo – the Tiered Baby Coat is calling me.

Confessions of a Mag Hag (or Magazine Addict Comes Clean)

Okay, I’m the first to admit that I have a major addiction.I love, love, LOVE magazines.Especially knitting magazines as well as cooking magazines.And decorating magazines.Add this to a predilection for on-line shopping and you’ve got a deadly combination.Whoever invented PayPal deserves either a medal or a life sentence.I can’t decide.The greatest thing ever invented (aside from knitting) is also the bane of my existence.

I try not to order anything new until I have in my hands the last thing I ordered.Which means that once I took delivery of [yet another] box of yarn from KnitPicks, my conscience was clear to order something new.I knew that one more shipment of yarn was going to result in a re-enactment of the Spanish Inquisition on the homefront, so more wool was out of the question.[There is little else more pathetic than listening to yourself trying to rationalize a stash that has a longer half-life than a tonne of plutonium.]I had spent weeks scouring my local magazine shops for the Fall 2009 issue of Knitscene.Magazine deliveries come on Wednesdays (as any obsessive mag hag would know), so every Humpday, there I am at the local book dispensaries and every Wednesday, I’m skunked.I even followed a tip on Ravelry that a copy (yes, just one copy) was spotted at the Broadway & Granville location of Chapters.So off I go on an epic bus trip and of course, after much tramping about and pawing through every magazine on the rack, it’s not there.It was a mirage.Blerg!!!

I didn’t want to pay ridiculous shipping charges so was reluctant to order it on-line but one day when surfing around, I found something called Stonehouse Publications on the web.It’s a Canadian company that distributes magazines and books and sure enough, they’ve got Knitscene, as well as the Fall/Winter 2009 issue of Debbie Bliss and the special Weekend issue of Interweave Knits.Their prices are in Canadian dollars and the shipping is pretty reasonable so naturally I plunk down my credit card and place an order.Now the torturous waiting has begun.Every day I check the Canpar website to track my order but it never seems to make it out of Montreal.My poor lonely periodicals, swaddled in a plain brown wrapper, sad and unread, languishing on a shelf in a dank shipping office or wedged in the back of a delivery truck.And of course, now the Debbie Bliss mag has been in the stores for days, mocking me from the shelf.Dang!But I refuse to leaf through it until I have my own copy in my hands.

I’ve found that having things delivered to the office is an excellent way of motivating myself to show up for work every day.The bonus of course is that by sending yarn and magazines to my workplace means it bypasses the Spanish Inquisitor, at least until the credit card statement arrives (of course, the Husband isn’t actually Spanish but is an excellent inquisitor).“Hmm.How much did that cost?” Yikes, the six most dreaded words I could hear. Marginally worse than “Sorry, we don’t have it yet” at the magazine store.