Friday, June 24, 2011

Uhura and critter stories

Well I promied ya'll some photos of Uhura so here you go. 

Not your standard sized triangle, Uhura is more of a circular shaped shawl.  If you have ever watched the star ship Enterprise jump to warp you know what MMario was trying to achieve... that elongated ziggy zag that happens throughout is just perfect.  Personally I couldn't see this shawl in anything BUT black with white stars (6/0 beads).  There's no beading on the shawl but I just had to have it.  This is a cashmere merino base yarn at about sport weight on size 5's.  Lovely stuff, very soft and wonderful.

Since you can't see the beads so well on DD I thought to give you another photo of it in a ball.  YUP beads galore.  They are only on charts 1 and 3 through.  I added many repeats of chart 2 and for the fearless you will find this a simple thing to achieve.  So long as you remember that for every SSK or K2tog there must be a yo in the center.  At the edges he at times gives you just the YO and that's to make the shawl circle more.  As you can see with the photo left it could easily tuck into your waistband to keep it from moving at all.  I really like this shawl and see myself using it a great deal next winter.

     Almost forgot to tell you of the run in with the snakes the other day.  Most of you know that we are up in the high desert... or at least the mountain between the deserts.  So we are inundated with snakes.  Having been here for 6-7 summers we now know that as soon as we here the neighbors mowers going we WILL be seeing snakes.  One afternoon we heard a great commotion on the front porch.  You should have seen the mass exodus for the bay window and sure enough just on the porch.... there were two snakes.  But the craziest thing was happening!  They were being ATTACKED by a rabbit!  We have a plethora of rabbits and squirrels here not to mention voles so we have plenty of snake fodder.  I don't mind the gopher snakes but you can have the Mojave green, rattlers, poisonous Kings (red) and the chain link snakes.  I'm just barely able to handle the gopher snakes and NO I so don't mean touch them.  I just mean not to have a heart episode when seeing one of the venomous ones!  Me and snakes.... SO NOT in the same sentence.  One of the gophers hide under the lavender... which DH promptly decided to jump over!  Silly old bear.  Good thing it wasn't a rattler or he might not be here to celebrate our 17th anniversary today!  Crazy man, he couldn't figure out what we were yelling at him as his eyes were focused on the other snake who was getting his tooshy WHIPPED BY A RABBIT! over by the tree.  I still can't believe it but when I saw the snake first the poor thing was trying to climb straight up our house!!!!  The rabbit kept attacking, biting the snake twirling and twisting then the rabbit leaping back, striking and twirling the snake around and then striking again, it was so NUTS!  I never woulda thought it.  I guess little snakey got a bit too close to the warren or possibly ate one of their babies.  CRAZY though!!, I never would have thought in a million years that rabbits could attack snake no way,,, no how,,, not in a million years!!  This rabbit showed NO FEAR and just kept at that snake for about two hours!  Finally the snake had it and climbed our poplar tree for a brief respite knowing all the while that the rabbit caught his breath at the base of the tree... just knowing the snake wasn't going anywhere. You ever been bit by a rabbit?  They have some SUPER sharp teeth.... but the aggression,,, to actually go after a snake NUTS!  If it weren't for the fact that gopher snakes eat the rattlers I'd not have them on our property.
      Another amazing but true story, is something I'm sure all of you have seen before.  We have LOTS of birds here as DD is a fanatic.  She's got all the books and feeders of all types. Yeah, I know... good lure for the snakes as the varmints have permanent feed but it's the great circle of life right?  So anyway there are these ravens... MASSIVE, elegant birds with these fantastic colors throughout their black feathers. I have loved these birds since I was a small child dreaming of flying with them.  Now adays they are a dyers dream, I will catch that some day in yarn! You ever seen a momma and poppa bird attack a raven? An incredible feat which I'm still shocked at.  The little birds will swoop and dive, chatter and shriek at the raven who get's no help from their mate.  The little birds just BARELY dodging out from under the clack of the ravens bill as he attempts to catch the taunting bird.  Along come Auntie and Uncle and before you know it there's like 4+ birds attacking this raven for who know's what reason.  NUTS! We must have rubbed off on the critters here as they too are just plum loco!  Again this goes on all over our 2.5 acres and is quite the show to watch.  Our country wild life surely does keep us entertained.
     One last story and then I'm off as the natives are restless and it's difficult to write.  Mom flicked something off of her arm yesterday.  Later that night I think I might have found what it was.  An ant... not just any ant but one that was at LEAST one inch long!  It was a dark burgundy color. Can you believe it!!!!  The body is made of three sections with the rear being the largest, I'd say it was the size of a tiny grape, you know those tiny ones that are usually bitter?  So this was a massive ant.  We have one still larger though, his rump is the size of a pea! Literally!  He's all black and shiney except for said rump which is bright bright red hot and all furry!  Go figure, country bugs right!  Well at least we don't have 5" long cockroaches that fly which is what we had down in the city.  They traveled through the water mains and could really freak a body out.
    Last story I promise.  Back in the day we used to go hiking a great deal at Eaton Canyon in Pasadena.  Well I'd picked up our eldest from school and off we went.  The night prior we'd had a run in with said roach.  Well my boys had a baseball bat and one of them had given it a really good thwack mid flight.  We thought that was the end of it.  NOT EVEN CLOSE.  Poor Madz... we were coming back from our hike and then entire time he's complaining of something in his shoe, I keep telling him well, it's probably just some rubble from the hike that there's a stream up ahead and he can bath his feet.  The poor dear freaked out completely when he pulled off his shoe, low and behold there was the cockroach, all mushed up under foot!  The poor dear had walked on it all day long, Madz was about 16 at the time.  Needless to say that roach was dead as a door nail.

DD took these photo's... she loves the wild life here.  Our camera's not the greatest but you get the jist.  Just moments before we had all of them up on the porch,,,, eating and scuttling about happy as clams.  It's been really hot here... soon my friend will come and sheer Panky, CANT wait... then you will be unindated with photos.  Till then have a super dee dooper day.

OH! last one, I'm knitting one of my patterns for the book and it's just SMASHING! Have a great day.  Can't wait for a year so I can share the book with you all.  I'm very pleased with everything so far.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

FREE shawl pattern and a bit of a ramble.

I finally made a contribution to the free pool.  Just was something I felt I really needed to do so here on the right you can see my latest design creation.  Feel free to sign into Rav and get a copy of the PDF for the pattern.
Below close up shows the lace border with optional beading.  As you can see I beaded the border too which adds a bit of weight.

Need to get ya'll some photos so this is just and update on my knitting.  Finishing up Uhura... hopefully today.  On Goddess KAL shawls we are working SMS11.  This is the first time I have ever cast on two at a time.  Finished up clue 2 on both yesterday.  One is my hand painted turquoise and for the second I'm using Cherry Tree Hilll Orenburg lace.  This is a 80/20 Kidd mohair and silk blend.  It itches!  I don't get it.  All the mohair fleece I have processed... NONE of them itch!  This stuff's very like Kidd Silk Haze by Rowan.  So my question to you is this... will this itchiness decrease with the wash?  Also if you've used something like this what did you make?  So far I made a scarf for DD wild asymetrical thing in the rainbow yarn colors with rainbow beads.  She's getting that for Christmas.  I know Ice Queen (cowl) was designed in this yarn but I just can't see wearing it close to the skin at this time.  LMK if you have knit with it and what you knit and if you like it cause at this point I can't recommend this yarn... least not from either of these two producers.  Like I said my mohairs not at all itchy so I just flat out don't get this.  Might have to spin from my fleeces when I want mohair from now on.
Speaking of spinning I have been doing a great deal of it of late.  I have a baby alpaca that's working up in lace, natural brown.  Then I have this lovely wool I dyed a coon's age ago that I'm spinning up.  DD spun up a bobbin months ago and didn't want to work with it any more.  She's into cross stitch these days as Mom does nothing but cross stitch lately due to an upcoming wedding.  So I've taken over the spinning for DD.  Two different spinners, two different wheels and we ended up with the same product!  What are the chances?   A heavy fingering and I'm thinking of making DD a hat from it.  Shhhh she doesn't know.
Other then that I have been VERY busy with my book.  I currently have ALL my TKer's knitting which is AWESOME!  For some reason I keep having sock patterns come to me... I'm unindated with them though and really need to move on to the garment section.  I played with the accessories on Friday and had a few thoughts to cement some of the projects.  A few just aren't making it and they are hitting the dung heap for now.  Really enjoying seeing my designs come out the end of the Tkers needles.  SO COOL!   They seem to be enjoying them as well.  Need to work on Midnight Roses as BMFA was great about dying up the yarn for it.  Their yarn is for a set, gloves and a bag which I'm really enjoying.  :-)  Everythings WAY over the top with lots of different techniques so they are not at all boring to knit.
Well, normally when I talk this much I know I'm draging my feet about going to work so I have to fly TTFN!  Have a great day.
Boo in Hawaii! 

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Yes Anick, knitting as always!

A dear friend made the comment that I'm always talking about knitting on here and she's right!  Gee, wonder why?  Cause I have NO life!!! You think?   :-)  Just for you deary we will talk about something not totally knitting related, how's that?
Here's Panky, his coats not very long but it must needs be shorn!  He's scratching it off on the fence now and then as it's hitting in the low 70's here.  My friends coming to shear him shortly... then he will turn into spinning and dyeing and YARN ok Anick?  More knitting!  HAHA and the rest of the post will be more of the same.

 This is AMS 11, not sure I like the way this is straight across in the back.  Went NUTS for this shawl though, the process that is.  I kept adding more rows then the KAL asked for which is why it's so large.  I added 20 rows in clue 4 and another 10+/- in clue 5 then made the border ruffle... it's supposed to be really straight.  I had dyed the yarn lighter then what's shown here but then added another kind of yarn at the bottom.  That's a baby alpaca,,,  a fluffy soft, nummy yarn.  They looked identical in the garage when I picked out the baby alpaca only come to find they weren't so I needed to hit the dye pots again.  DD had the GREAT idea to dye it the color of our eldest sons wedding flower the star lily... you know that color in the center?  Well that's the wedding colors.  I will be wearing a skirt from the satin in the photo below and all accessories are white, turquoise and pink now.  FUN and LOUD, that's me in a nut shell?  Oh did I say nut?  LOL
This is my latest pattern, Summer Lacy Twist Socks which are made in Panda Cotton, perfect for the summertime warm weather.  You can find the pattern on Ravelry.  While there I change the price on my Triple Button Headband ... free!!! that can be downloaded off of Ravelry 
       While on the subject I need to tell you all that if you are a Designer on Rav you can now sell your patterns to LYS's!!!!  The owner can browse the store on their puter, download and print your pattern and then sell it to their customers.  Isn't that the smartest thing Casey and them have done to date?  I think it's a step ahead of their time and a fantastic way to introduce LYS owners to Designers that would otherwise not meet.
       Got my "office" all set up in a corner of my bedroom now and all my test knitters are in one location so we are ready to roll with my book patterns.  Three are currently out to the testers, looking forward to having them all done, it's a long row to hoe.  After having a photo shoot here yesterday and taking some shots of my first item I spoke with my publisher and they tell me that I didn't need to that they were going to do all of the photography.  Live and learn... plus it helps the quality of my photo's the more I take.  What do you think of the one above?  The sock one, not the shawls.  The shawl photos are for my own personal use, the sock pattern has to be clear and distinct to go on the pattern for people to knit off of.
       Been having fun over on Twitter.  I can get into more trouble there in 5 minutes then I can anywhere else so I'm enjoying it.  Hope you are having a great day.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Massive Dye Day

Yesterday was a massive dye day along with Mom's 80th B-day so I thought I'd share a few photos.  Not in any particular order, here's Jane's Tippet

 Left is a boucle wool base I have that I dyed up for a sweater.  YUM!  Right is a silk sock for my fantastic test knitter Robin B who knit my first pair of socks out of my book GO ROBIN!  She's going to weave this into a scarf.  NUMMY!  Hopefully she will get the sweaters worth of SuriMerino that I dyed up too as they are SO her colors.

 You can't see this so well but above is my glitter sock base and the colors are Mermaid Lagoon and brown for a project in my book as well.  I would have used someone elses yarns but didn't find any that suited,,, whereas these are perfect... wonder if I can replicate it.  The idea was to get the perfect yarn but I'm sure someone else can work the magic for the book.  I know that I have seen stuff like this before.

 Left is Pale Roses and right is Pale Turquoise.  I love making them pales!

 Lastly here's Mom on her 80th birthday.

I finished clue 4 of AMS11 and added 20 extra rows.  That photo will come next week after finishing the border.  I so love that yarn... it's the same base as the two pales above, silk/merino and so soft you want to have it round you all day long.  Hope you are all having a superdeedooper day!