Monday, May 31, 2010

Maddie's Bootees

In the last couple of days, I have done more shopping than knitting - spending some good cashola on beautiful wool at Urban Yarns and Three Bags Full - each with a project in mind, of course. I will be good for a while, I think - months, really. From SweetGeorgia to Gourmet Crafter to Malbrigio Silky Merino, it was heaven picking them up from the yarn stores wound (thank you to both! - a lot of money = a lot of winding!)

With the Clapotis, I have hit a major snag and have to unravel. I have left that for tonight. The Noro Scarf is finally done blocking after a rainy week, and yay, Maddie's Saartje's Bootees are done!

Sara not like you have time to read this right now, but - expect to see them in the mail soon!

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Too Many Patterns, Too many Yarns

Just as I was cleaning out my stash, Gourmet Crafter and SweetGeorgia had to add to the supply this weekend. Had to, just had to.

First, the Gourmet Crafter Gourmet Sock was a must have for my top queued projects: Fall Leaves for the Traveling Woman shawl, the third shawl on my "10 shawls in 2010" goal; Tofino Fern to knit up a lovely Saroyan - green and earth tones for the leaves; and one more skein (I hope the dye lots are close :)) of the Granville Island Cherries for the Clapotis that I'm working on. Thank you, Alexa! Beautiful colours. These patterns can all be found on Ravelry, of course.

SweetGeorgia I hear word is dropping by some more Cashsilk Lace this weekend - so of course I am going to be the one calling at 12 pm tomorrow when they open to see if it's there yet! This rainy weather has really inspired me to knit. I am hoping there are some good verigated colours - can't wait to browse, which is half the fun of knitting.

I have almost finished Maddie's Saartje's Bootees while waiting at the movie theatre this afternoon before an entertaining yet highly disrespectful Sex and the City 2- just need to get 4 buttons instead of 2. Duh. Off to the bead shop. I found the cutest little flower buttons. Will have to test them out. Package in the mail soon, Sara!

I can't wait to get started on the Little Sister's Dress for Maddie as well. I want to do a raspberry or a deep plum - the kid is guaranteed to have dark brown hair, so I think this will pop on her! I'll see what the Shibui has at Urban Yarns.

As you can see, many things just waiting to be cast on. And there are still many things that I need to finish. So, to add a little variety to my life and get things completed, I like to do an hour of "necessary knitting" by setting small goals for each one so I eventually complete everything, but am then able to move on quickly without having a ton of chore knitting. I set my timers, and go.

So I have set myself some small goals for many projects throughout this next week. Thank you Google for the list app.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010


Sure enough, I have come back from a fantastic day at a wedding, then a rush trip (but fabulous) in Whistler, and my Multnomah is dry! The Noro scarf is still drying, but I don't care :) Although shawls are kind of old-school, I think as a knitting project they have the perfect complexity for me at the moment. Long enough so I don't buy more yarn, and short enough to feel it's not going to drag on forever.

Which is why I have joined the Ravelry group/contest: 10 Shawls in 2010, featuring monthly prizes, and a grand prize. There are some rules and regs, but nothing I can't handle. Another project, here I come. I am approx. done 10% of the Clapotis in the lucious Gourmet Sock Granville Island Cherries - prizes, here I come. I'll probably have to move to the States to collect these so-called winnings anyway-knowing my luck. :)

I also had a recent trip to the library where I signed out several audiobooks. Well recommended by the BBC World Book Club, I am currently reading/listening to Small Island,  by Andrea Levy. Let's see if I can finish Clapotis before the 10 CDs are up. Onto the second one now!

Thanks to the bf for a great weekend!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Blocking before 8:30 on Sunday - Multnomah

I am so proud - my first lace project and shawl :)

Feather and Fan border was really neat. I love the wave effect, especially in this colourway (Westcoast Winter).

Tying up Loose Ends

Sundays - my dream day for getting things done. The boyfriend has to get up early, which means I can too if I choose, and I love it as I can make the most of my day.

Today I am dedicating to tying up loose ends. Weaving. I had to get darning needles last night just for this purpose - I must lay everything out to block so it will hopefully be dry by Monday after coming back from Whistler. I want things to be then put away, mailed, whatever for a fresh week.

I was able to get some children's foam floor tiles for blocking from recommendations at Urban Yarns - you can pin everything in without the worry of getting the floor wet nor having cardboard pieces come off onto the project. And yay, they were on sale last week, but not this week, and was still able to get the discount! Gotta love that.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Eye Candy

After a long week of waiting to get to the local yarn store, I finally made it late to the Friday night Stitch n'Bitch after waiting an hour extra for a client NOT to call me. Anyway, got there to a bag of freshly wound yarn: some Hand Maiden Angel Hair and the delicious Granville Island Cherries sock by Gourmet Crafter.

DEEEELLLLLIIIICIOIUSSSSS.....You know it's a great yarn when you can't wait to finish the shawl using SweetGeorgia yarn to get the next project on the needles. GIC is almost as good as having the real thing...I am someone who can eat BOWLS of cherries. Alas, it is just candy for the eyes.

This skein started with the dark, juicy dark plum cherry colour, the cherry you pick out of the bowl because you know it was sun-ripened to perfection. This graduates into blood-orange, then orange popsicle. A bright Ranier cherry yellow pops before it moves back into the orange popsicle colour.

What makes this yarn so great is that the colour comes alive as I live my day in Vancouver. I can SEE this bowl of cherries coming soon to my kitchen, glistening in the sun. This inspires me to move quickly to get her next skeins coming soon to Urban Yarns - Fall Leaves for an upcoming Traveling Woman shawl - Tofino Fern I have fallen in love with by picture only - have to have a project first...

Check out her other Vancouverite threads at I can't wait to see Kynna's socks in Gourmet Crafter's Davie Street - blue with a bit of rainbow!

The Clapotis has started. Just need to hope that the next dye lot will match the first skein enough :) Stupid me - not buying enough, of course. Can't wait til it gets in. I'll know I'll have some competition.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Where Not to Knit

This past week I have been doing a lot of waiting - ok, in the last 3 days it has been 4 hours of wasted waiting where I just could not knit.

One: Future Shop - annoying customer experience where I could not be distracted by knitting, even amongst those shiny cell phones...just didn't feel right.

Passport Renewal Gov't office: Why? Because I had to fill out the SAME form 5 times! Waste, waste of time.

Even worse, the new cell phone from Future Shop has a version of Boggle, my all time fave board game that no one will play with me any more - this distracts me even more from getting knitting done!

Must finish the Multnomah this week! I have to get the turbo needles charged up for the recently wound Gourmet Crafter's Granville Island Cherries sock yarn that will be a clickin' this weekend!

Weddings and movie theatres...just can't bring myself to knit there either...

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Running Away with Alice Munro

After weeks of taking the bus now in this gorgeous weather, it has been my easy decision to take the slow bus over the B-Line every time just to get some more reading in. I completed Alice Munro's Runaway, a short story collection that had me blown away by the end of the first story. I could not put this down. There is something about a short story collection now in my busy life that I feel like I able to complete something. But my fear of short stories came true - each one came to a very quick end - Munro's stories each could have been made into novels. She has a brillant way of developing a character in a paragraph so you feel like you're in their lives.

The first Runaway, invoked a sense of hopelessness - a woman's life that is controlled by her husband, and her failure to take opportunities...heartwrenching.

Chance, Soon, and Silence are of this one character, Juliet, and how she moves through life with guilt, dealing with a doting father, a listless sick mother, and soon a daughter who disappears surprisingly by choice by whom she grieves for years. It`s hard on the bus to have your facial expressions remain neutral as you read this. You feel everything that the protaganist feels.

Passions I have read before, I have no idea where, but not one of these that I am thrilled about to mention.

Tricks was my favorite, but the most heart-wrenching - a story of unrequited love and how life really isn`t fair. I was very stressed after reading this story, I was sick to my stomach. Nevertheless, my favorite.

Trespasses is a story of a girl and an overly friendly waitress. The girl is someone I want my daughter to be - smart, sure, intellectual, and independant.

Powers, a story about advantage, the past cruelty to the mentally ill, and distracted friendship.

By far a great book, should be read by all.

I am now working on Dreamer`s of the Day, by Marie Doria Russell, picked up from a libary display, we shall see...

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Getting Rid of the Noro - Satisfaction

I am absolutely CREAMING the Noro stash - after 1 hr of knitting, I have almost finished 1 skein of the Noro Silk Garden Chunky that has been falling apart and making a colourful mess of my knitting stash. The bus, a bit at lunch, and I am almost 1/4 done. Although knitting with 7.5mm feels like having my hands full - a bit annoying, this is knitting up fast. Feels good to know I will have 4 skeins out of my stash - room for new wool?

Noro annoys me - love the varigation - do not like the feel. To scratchy. This is not too bad, but I have some weird colourways. Who actually wears this stuff?

On a better note, I am loving the SweetGeorgia Yarn in Westcoast Winter:

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Completion and Frustration

So, I just need to say it again - Urban Yarns' new store is bloody fantastic. Complete with a loft, a chandelier, and more whimsical touches like the Eiffel Tower picture, a large bay window, and the new logo which includes a woman on her bike with her knitting, I think it wins hands down as the best knitting store in Vancouver now - not to mention the outstanding customer service and Friday night relaxing Stitch n' Bitch. Love it.

I especially love the knowledgable staff help after I had a stressful week of accidentally cutting my sister's mittens. Fuck. I left it immediately: I put it back in it's bag, and decided to finish Mrs. Lidster's mittens instead. The day I sent them? The warmest day ever. So hopefully she will be able to sink her hands into the Sweet Potato Pie orange insides from Blue Sky Alpaca's Brushed Suri line and sink into heaven while on her deck over the lake on a cool spring day. Otherwise, it will be next fall :)

As you can tell, I loved her mittens, they worked out. Heather's have been the bane of my existence though - having to redo them once already as they were a little small. I proceeded to cut out the Kidssilk Haze lining which was too small, rather exhuberantly in exchange for Fudgesicle from the Brushed Suri line. And of course, I got the Icord and snip snip, I was in yarn hell.

There was one person and one person only who I knew would have an idea - if not, then these mittens were destined not to be this season. Alexa, you are awesome. Taking your Friday night to fix this mitten! So , I am ready to finish these things once and for all - but honestly I am a little bored. So I'm going to leave them for a while. It's too warm here to wear them anyway.

Here are Mrs. Lidster's Happy Mittens:

Click here for more info.

Mittens put aside, I have been wanting to do a me project for numerous months, and was admiring the Raspberry Multnomah in the Urban Yarns shop. Free pattern on Ravelry, and I am under way after a couple of hours. I am using addi Turbo Lace needles, which are a dream to work tip, smooth surface, and almost seamless transition from wire to needle. This is my first shawl:

I am using the SweetGeorgia Yarns Superwash Sock Yarn in Westcoast Winter, a beautiful limited colour edition. The wool is gret to work with, hardly any splitting, soft when pressed. It's great.

I love this colour.

One of the women at Stitch n' Bitch made the beautiful Claptois drop stitch pattern that you can look up on Ravellry - I am already considering this with Gourmet Crafter's Granville Island Cherries Sock!

Over and out.
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