Thursday, February 27, 2014

Nearing the End of the Duchess

Last Sunday's rain delay in Daytona that was briefly interrupted by the Daytona 500 (Yea Junior!) provided me time to finish the last sleeve and pick up over 350 stitches around the fronts and neck of the Duchess of Cambridge cardigan.  I have over half of the 3 1/2 inch border done.
Perhaps by tomorrow I can cast off.  Then I can return to the SWestie Shawl, as well as other WIPs (Works in Progress) as I contemplate new projects.
I have a semi-stealth project in mind.  I can probably post pictures, but won't mention who it is for, once that is begun.  For now, I'll just say February Baby Sweater.  And maybe a blankie to go with it.
Once I spend time on the shawl again, I will think about casting on.
I wonder what the weather report is in Phoenix this weekend come race time?

Now Is The Winter of Our Discontent?

Many of my friends, neighbors, and others across West Michigan have been channeling William Shakespeare and Richard III lately.  Conversations and FaceBook are awash with mutterings and grumblings about the weather.  And the temperatures.
And I have to confess that, contrary to popular opinion.....I am not one of them.
I have been completely enjoying this winter.  Sure, I got stuck in the driveway one evening.  I have arthritis in my knee and hands that has started acting up more. And it is hard to convince Lizzy, my dog, that she really needs to take a walk some days.
But come summer, when the heat of July and August are once again upon us, I will be longing for weather like this again.  This is not the winter of my discontent.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

The So Sari Shawl Finished

The fuzzy wuzzy sari silk yarn has been transformed in to a wonderful shawl.  And with about a skein to spare as well.

The yarn over holes are a bit subtle but their still add an airy quality.  Funny thing though; as holey as it is, it is very warm.  As I finished it during the recent (and very brief) warm spell I wrapped it around me as I knit the last few rows.  And it was very warm.
It has been passed on to it's owner and I am back to working on the Duchess of Cambridge cardigan.  I hope to cast off the second sleeve either today or tomorrow.  Then comes the long task of picking up the stitches up one side, around the neck and down the other side.  And some tedious hours of 1 x 1 ribbing to finish that project.
This shawl was project five for this year.    I promise not start anything new until I finish the cardigan and SWestie shawl.
Except for a possible pair of socks.
I hope.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Let's Go Racing

At long last, NASCAR is back. Not the regular season but the first race: the free-wheeling, free-for-all called the Sprint Unlimited. I am ready. My knitting is at hand and ready to go.

But the one dark spot is that for the first time since I have followed the racing, my man Mark is not here. Mark Martin has once again retired. He tried before, and that didn't take. But it seems this time that he means it. He is at least off the track. Hope he enjoys retirement. At least it was his decision.

So now, who will be my main driver to root for? I really don't know. I picked Brad Keselowski as my driver on my NASCAR app, mostly because he is from Michigan. But Tony is back, Kyle seems less intense, Jimmy is on a roll, and there is always Jr. I like all of them, and more.

Today I may have Brad, but the position of favorite driver is up for grabs. Now excuse me. The flag will drop soon.

Saturday, February 8, 2014

And I'm Off

The real Winter Games began competing on Thursday, so I started to knit then. Once swatching was done, and the sample approved, there was no reason to wait.

I ended up with size 13 needles, a bit outside my comfort zone. And apparently the ball I chose to start with was the one used in the bottom swatch. It knit up thicker than just the size 11 needles would account for.

it ran out after about three or four inches and the next ball wasn't so fuzzy. But I decided to add random yarn over holes every couple rows to make it more light and airy.

You can see both sections here as Lizzy models it. I will just save the thickest and fuzziest to use at the final end.

PS...You may notice that I avoid the O word when referring to the Games. The official "O" committee threatened to sue in the past when knitters used the word when they celebrated the games with knitting. So I prefer to ignore the the official group.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Winter Games Knitting

I have been knitting along on my SWestie Shawl.  I love the colors of the Noro and I have started the second color repeat.  I haven't weighed the skein that is left yet, but I judge that I am about half way through that skein.  After going through the stash, and laying several skeins of sock yarn with the shawl, I decided against the green as I mentioned before.  I decided on this lovely skein of Knit Picks Gloss, in Winter Night. I have two skeins, so that will give me about 850 to 900 yards total.  I think it will make a wonderful shawl.
The Winter Night isn't an exact match, but very close.  I don't like things too matchy-matchy anyway.
Now, the Winter Games.  The Olympic committee had a hissy fit before when knitters around the world celebrated the games four years ago by have Knitting Olympics. So I probably won't actually much of the real Winter Games, but I have decided to try to have my private Knitting Winter Game.
My ex-boss, but still friend, had purchased this sari silk at a fiber festival in West Branch one year.  With my enabling, of course.  I mean, after all...what are friends for?  Anyway, as the end was nearing on my job, and I was trying to cheer her and myself with talking about all the knitting time I was gaining, she asked me to knit her a shawl out of this.  Just a plain old rectangle, easy peasy.  I think the biggest problem will be the fact that my largest needles are almost the same colors as the yarn.  I will do my swatching tomorrow and then try to figure out stitch count.  I am planning on garter stitch.  I don't think any fancy stitches would show in that yarn anyway.  Just large needles to show off the yarn.
And then Friday, I can cast on and start knitting.  I better find out how long the real Olympics last so I know when I need to have this finished.
Then I can return to my shawl and continue on my Duchess of Cambridge cardigan.  I am on the second sleeve!