Latest Acquisition

We have just been given a knitted coat for the Knitting & Crochet collection – the Shaded Diamonds design by Kaffe Fassett.   The pattern appeared in Rowan Magazine 35 in 2004 (now available as a free download).  It’s a beautiful coat, and very neatly knitted too – it was one of Rowan’s samples.

There are 19 differetn colours of Rowan Summer Tweed in the coat. There are five colours in each diamond, and it’s fascinating to see how the colour shades from say dark red to pale pink through stripes of varying widths.

We now have about a dozen Kaffe Fassett designs in the Guild collection – a small sub-collection it its own right.  Shaded Diamonds is a great addition – really special.

 I’ll add some close-ups when I’ve had a chance to take more photos.

 
Source: ggg

Finishes are Close

I have the 7 bags finished for the Fiber Pusher Podcast sale.
I thoroughly enjoyed making them and didn’t regret the decision to make them! 
Since the socks were off the needles I turned to another Nurmilintu shawl.
I wanted to make another baby surprise sweater but need some superwash yarn-I hate to strap a mom with a hand wash only sweater!  It would have worked up great in this yarn though! Oh, well.
This yarn is hand spun of Cormo so the shawl will be like getting a hug every time it is worn!

Source: FF

It’s almost April – Spring must be here soon!

It’s almost April – and time for another meeting!  Have you noticed how the days are already getting longer?  Let’s hope we don’t get too many April showers – things are still very soggy in my garden.

But enough of that – We have a speaker for our April meeting.  Fiona Morris is visiting to talk about New Fibres and Eco-Friendly yarns.  I am sure she has lots to show and tell us.    We will find time for some show and tell as we all like to see what others have knitted in the past few weeks.

Look forward to seeing you there – Tuesday 5th April, 8pm start as usual.
Source: Knit

The Power of Intention

Has anyone read “The Secret” by Rhonda Byrne?  From what I understand, it claims you can make things real through the power of intention via the universal laws of attraction…or some such thing…I’ve clearly not read the book myself.

What Make Sense to Me

I’m not sure I believe much of this concept of intending for things to happen and they magically do, despite the fact that this book was a mega best-seller.

“I intend to be a billionaire by this Sunday, April 3rd, 2016.”

I do think there is some merit in setting my conscious awareness on some goal or some specific thing, and by doing so, become more aware of it’s presence in my life.

So, for instance, I set my sights on “cake” – and magically, every where I go I seem to find cake…grocery store, in the small kitchenette on the fifth floor of my office, in photographs on friends’ Facebook page, etc.

Did I create all this cake through intentionality?  Through some force of Universal law?  I don’t believe so.  Did I set my mind to focusing more on cake and so therefore was more cognizant of the cake that was already there?  Did I set my unconscious mind to be more aware of opportunities to spot cake?  Probably.

So, do I think prayer, conscious intention and/or making my desires known can help me reach goals?  Yes, to a certain degree.  Do I think the Universe, or God is some petitionable entity where I can send up my requests and expect to have them delivered…I don’t really.

But even still, I might have wanted to choose a healthier example of intention than cake…just in case.

Current Knitting

Working on what will be the last of 22 London Beanies if there is enough yarn to complete this one.  I fully INTEND to have enough yarn for the final beanie…let it be so!

It will be quite close, or it may be a VERY shallow beanie…more like a kippah.
Source: loo

Midnight

The men’s midnight blue socks are finished.
It is hard to knit with a dark color!
The yarn is handspun, superwash merino/nylon.
250 yards
size 2.5mm needles over 60 stitches in plain toe-up knit with a 2 x 2 rib cuff
Size 10 1/2 men’s shoe
I knit these for my son-in-law,  Bruce!

Source: FF

It’s That Time of Year!

Alligator turtle! 
He brings ‘snapping’ turtle to a whole new level!  He came through our yard recently!
One of our resident gopher tortoises.  He is an adult with a  14″ shell.
Yesterday, while some children came for a visit and we took a walk, we came across this young one with a shell measuring 2 1/2″ !  It is the first ‘baby’ we have seen.
We brought him up to the house for Bill to see (and photograph) and then we returned him to his own territory again!
Spring has everyone on the move!

Source: FF

A Twined Knitting Cuff

I haven’t written for a while – I just haven’t been in the mood.  Sorry about that.

But I’ve been knitting, of course.  What I’m knitting at the moment is a birthday present, so I can’t write about that.  I’ll write instead about a couple of things I finished a little while ago that were practice pieces for a workshop I am doing next month on Swedish Twined Knitting.  I wanted to design something small that would show the techniques and a few different stitches.  Twined knitting is traditionally worked in the round (and I think is better done that way), but for people at the workshop who would prefer to knit flat I have devised a small sampler that might be construed as a coaster – I’ll show that later, maybe.  And the smallest useful thing I could think of that’s knitted in the round, and would show off the fact that twined knitting is dense and warm, is a cuff or wristlet.   So here’s the one I’ve made:

In twined knitting, you knit with two strands of wool, alternating after every stitch.  My first practice pieces had both strands in the same colour, but for the cuff I was experimenting with two different colours. It’s also, I’ve read, traditional to use a contrast colour for the cast-on, and then to make a braid with the cast-on ends rather than sewing them in, so I’ve done that too.

You can make patterns if you’re knitting with two strands of the same colour with purl stitches on a stocking stitch background, and I tried that in my cuff.  Oddly, although the white purl bumps show up reasonably well on the grey/white background, grey purl bumps don’t at all – having tried that, I unravelled it.

The inside is very neat, and shows how you always take one strand over another in the same direction, which gives twined knitting its thickness and stretch – and results in the two strands getting twisted (or twined) together, so that you have to keep stopping to untwine them.    

And here’s a slightly strange shot of an upside-down cuff, showing the cast-on edge, with black yarn.

Do cuffs normally come in pairs? Perhaps they should, but I’d get a severe case of  ‘second sock syndrome’ if I knitted another one of these.  I like it very much, but it was intended partly as an experiment to see what twined knitting looks like in two colours, and I don’t want to repeat it.  But I have a good reason for only knitting one:  I have a sweater I bought this winter that I like very much, and a cuff (one cuff) is just the thing to go with it.      

It’s an asymmetric design, with seams in odd places, and pieces knitted sideways, and you can see that the cable pattern on the front is asymmetric.  One sleeve is cabled, with a moss stitch top, and the other is in fisherman’s rib with a stocking stitch top.   It’s so asymmetric that one sleeve is longer than the other. (I’m not sure if that’s intentional, but I’ve decided that it’s a design feature.)  I’ve been wearing the longer sleeve turned up, to even them out – and now I can wear my one cuff on the other sleeve.

   
Source: ggg

When You Know You’ve Got a Problem

One of Americans’ favorite pastimes is complaining about poor customer service…today’s blog entry isn’t that.

The Life of a Customer Service Rep

I have recently been on the phone with the customer service department of a company that is renowned for how bad their customer service is (think Department of Motor Vehicles), and I have to admit, a couple of times I got quite frustrated with the process.

Then I read an interview with a customer service rep from that company, and I vowed then and there that I would NEVER take out my frustrations with a customer service representative again…even when the customer service rep seems incompetent.

First of all, one of my many rules with ground crews at airports is that they are the ONLY people who can help me get what I need, and being nice to them gets a LOT more results than yelling at them.  I realized this goes for customer service reps as well.

Second, I realized (especially with this company) that most of the reps I speak with are quite intelligent and really want to be helpful…they often times just have no ability to help me in the way I need it and very little incentive to go out of their way to do so.  Yelling at them only makes them LESS likely to go out of their way.

Third, and finally, if the rep truly is incompetent or just not helpful despite all my charming appreciation for her/his talents, I know I can always call back later and hopefully get someone who is.

If anyone reading this is a customer service rep for a company that gets pummeled for it’s bad reputation for how they treat customers, I would LOVE to interview you and print the results here on this blog for all the world to see what your world is really like.  Let’s hear your side of the story.

Current Knitting

I’m working on one of the last few London Beanies.

At least I think I’m running out of the Noro Hanabatake yarn.  Looks like the final total will be 20 hats (from 15 balls of yarn).  I’ll be quite pleased with that.
Source: loo