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New creations

Posted on: March 5, 2009

Yarn

Yarn

The three cakes of solid green yarn have started the transformation into a shawl. I began working on it yesterday and got a good start at SnB last night. In between bouts of laughter and general fun. I’ll try to get a picture if there is decent light this weekend. That might not happen since there are thunderstorms predicted. Ah! Spring rain.

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I’m at Sheep in the City this weekend. It’s a good weekend for any sort of fiber related activity up here in Wisconsin since it’s cold and snowy outside. I’ll have to venture out at some point to get some lunch, but most of today (Saturday) will be spent indoors learning some new things.

Like SPINNING!!! Yes! I bought a drop spindle and some roving. A very nice woman at the booth where I’ve also dropped a few dollars got me started. It’s not nearly as difficult as I thought and I’ve been spinning away for an hour or so now. Just as relaxing as knitting and as portable with the drop spindle.

I’m also working on a knitted garden gnome. You read that right. It’s another Amy Gaines pattern. In January, I bought three more of her patterns and am just starting work on them. After I finish this one, I plan to move on to a knitted bird and birdhouse…perfect for spring.

I’ve taken a few pictures, but photographing yarn is proving somewhat difficult for me. I’m not happy with how the colors are turning out. It’s good practice though in an area that I’ve never been as comfortable taking pictures.

Time to head back to the action. I think Guild Wars will be starting soon. Two fiber guilds are competing to see how can knit a scarf the fastest…from start to finish. Including carding the wool, spinning it into yarn, and the actual knitting of said wool. Exciting stuff!!! (I really mean that.)

Then my first class (well, it’s a make and take but I will be learning a new technique) starts in an hour. I’ll have a break for lunch. Then the sweater class is this afternoon. The rest of the day will be filled with general hijinks. Maybe I’ll break out the bathing suit and scare some people in the hot tub. *snort*

And for those who wonder, travel was fine yesterday. Some snow flurries developed as I got closer to Rockford and those continued throughout the rest of my trip. Traffic was fine. The interstates in IL left some to be desired. Wonder what Blagojevich was doing with all the money designated for highway repairs. Well, maybe I don’t really wonder. But there are some potholes you could lose yourself in.

And on the food front, I took advantage of the continental breakfast the hotel (Comfort Suites, btw) offered and had a decent, healthy, and filling start to my day. I think I could use another cup of coffee now. Or maybe a bottle of water.

Getting really excited about Sheep in the City at the end of the month.

I’m looking forward to the classes I’ll be taking.

I’m also looking forward to the vendors! Saving my pennies for new yarn. Yeah yeah. I don’t need new yarn…but…well…knitters understand.

As I worked on my scarf at SnB last night, I was struck by this secret code language that knitters have. If you were listening in you would have heard people talking about:

DPN’s or double point needles – Not some sort of weird device that nurses use for injections.

Knitting around – No one was singing Row Row Your Boat while knitting.

Chain – This has nothing to do with metal (although I’ve seen a knitting book about using wire instead of yarn) or anything kinky.

Dropped stitch – Don’t worry! The little weird animal/thing from the movie did not land on the floor at any time.

Hole – Well…this is pretty much what it sounds like.

Place marker – While I’ve been known to be tidy to the point of ridiculous, this has nothing to do with putting permanent markers in a row.

Frogged – We weren’t playing Frogger.

Ripped – Nothing was torn apart.

Tinked – No fairies or Julia Roberts were harmed.

Addi Turbos – It may sound like some sort of exotic racing car, but it’s not.

Interchangeable cables – Hmmm…this is another one that does kind of sound like what it is.

Felting – This really does sound potentially x-rated. Trust me, it isn’t.

Like many things, knitting has it’s own language. Fellow knitters can tell each other from the unwashed masses by this secret code.

Oh…my scarf is coming along. Still no pictures.

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misc-004

I worked on the scarf this weekend while watching movies with MIL. It’s getting longer! Another good night of knitting and I should be done with this project.

I have been knitting off and on. I brought the sock with me last Friday, but never actually pulled it out of my bag. Prime knitting time wasted, I know!

Anyway, I wanted something super simple and mindless to work on. The sock is basic, but I still have to deal with the five needles. So I started a scarf Monday night. That’s the longish red thing. It’s not Wavy although it kind of looks like it; it’s just mooshed up from being stuffed in a Ziploc. I’m using the Berlin Scarf pattern from Purl Bee. It’s knitting up into a really thick, lofty fabric that is going to be a pleasure to wear. Depending on who I get partnered with in the Facebook scarf exchange, I might use this pattern. Would be lovely with an alpaca wool.

The blue blob is the string bag that I’m still working on. It’s not a very exciting knit. I’m at the top of the bag now and only have a few rows to go. All that’s left is knitting the straps and the finishing.

The sock continues to progress. If I ever have an evening when I don’t have much to do I will probably get it finished. If…

And the snowman is a kit I got last year (?) and haven’t worked on yet. Finally wound the yarn this weekend. I’d really like to knit it up before Christmas, but things are going to get a bit crazy in the next few weeks.

That’s about it on the knitting front. I have the yarn

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Survey Says

Posted on: October 29, 2008

The other day I happened upon a survey about knitting and crocheting. Seems there is a college student interested in those of us engaged in these particular hobbies. My guess is she also indulges or is close to someone who does. It made me consider again why knitting is important to me; why it’s more than just a hobby.

Yes, I’ve written about this before, but hopefully my thoughts are either clearer or different enough to be of some small interest. This is really about finishing.

I get a deep sense of accomplishment when I finish a knitted object, whether it’s a toy or socks or a scarf or whatever. When I bind off that last stitch and weave in those ends, I look back on the happy hours I’ve spent with my needles and yarn. And I’m pleased to have created, from start to finish, something with my two hands.

When I first got back into knitting and was taking the refresher class and later, more advanced classes, my main accomplishment was getting to the class itself and enduring the the two hours of being public. I rediscovered knitting when my anxiety disorder and panic attacks were their peak. Some days getting out of bed was a hurdle. To get myself dressed, in the car for the hour drive to the shop where I took classes, and actually into the shop took so much energy. But I enjoyed the craft and I was determined to overcome my illness. This was one of my first achievements linked to knitting. In fact, I credit knitting with helping me get through the worst of this time and in helping me stay connected in some way with other people and the greater world.

Since then knitting has helped me achieve other goals, like selling my handcrafted items in a retail shop, participating in craft fairs, and even teaching beginning knitters. I only consider myself an early intermediate knitting and I like the feeling I get when I learn a new stitch pattern or try a new technique. If I had more time, I’d even like to try working me way up to being a master knitter. Someday.

In my worklife I rarely get to see the results of my efforts. Although I hope a students learned how to do better research and earned an A, they don’t usually return to say so. I don’t know what sticks when I teach an instruction session. I can’t see exactly what the person on the other end of the phone is doing when I explain something. While I find my work fulfilling, there isn’t a definable end product that I can look at with satisfaction like I can when I put on a pair of socks I knit myself.

So I knit.

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