Tuesday, February 25, 2014

It happens...

I wanted the next blanket for the book knitted up in something vivid.  People are buying brighter colors for babies than they used to, using lots of funky fun colors.  I picked out a fairly intense candy pink and a variegated that goes with it.

Then, I sat down to knit the next blanket idea, and I knew from making swatches that I would not like it with my yarn.  Swatching really does save me a lot of heartache - it's so much better to find out before I do all the work! 

This variegated is changing colors constantly and has a very stripe-y look.  After that I tried another idea, and another idea, and another, none of which I liked with my yarn.

I think I finally have a winner - I'll keep you posted. 

At the same time, John and I are preparing for Spring Fling at Newton's Knits in Anaheim, California.  I am so excited!

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Another Baby Blanket

This one's a simple tuck, but uses lots of baby colors.  I alternated white with different colors from partial cones.  It takes a little patience to keep threading up different colors, but I enjoyed working on it, and just love the finished results. 

Note how different the knit and purl sides are, and notice the fold-over edging (which I machine sewed to one side, then hand sewed down on the other side):

After doing so many pastel blankets, the next baby blanket is a change.  I purchased louder colors!

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Inspiration at Tom Machine Knitting Guy - and a few notes

Check out the great-looking socks at Tom's blog:


Socks are my go-to project for anti-stress knitting, too.  I love small projects!  (Lately, I've been feeling like doing more clothing projects, but too many other things in the finish-me hopper before I get to start a new project group.)

Next item:  Comments - If you're a real knitter and want to comment, I love to see your comments and I'll put them up.  For many machine knitters, the online community is the only available knitting guild, and I often hear how knitters enjoy seeing what other people think and are knitting.

My comments are moderated, that is, I approve them before they go up.  So, if someone's trying to use my blog to post links to non-knitting websites or even bad places, nope, I'll delete a comment like that.  It's probably not a good idea to click on links in comments, anyway, unless you know the commenter.

And finally - A reader clued me in that I didn't have a link to the fingerless mitts in the free project videos on the left-hand side of the blog.  I've added them, and a couple other projects, too.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

February's Video - Faster! Flatter! Mattress Stitch

I had quite a few videos already finished and edited that I could have chosen for February, but I decided that I most wanted to show this shortcut mattress stitch.  You will like this for situations where you need to work quickly, and for situations where you're trying to eliminate bulk - for instance, with thick yarn.

I have, for the first time, tried captioning this video to see if it can be more helpful to the hearing impaired.  YouTube says it will be a while before the captions are up, because their system is synchronizing the captions to the video's timing.  I did not use a voice recognition program but typed the words out myself, so any errors are on me.  I am very curious as to how well this will work, hoping it reads to put the needle down into the loop when I'm actually putting the needle downward, not upward!  It's an experiment...we'll see how it goes.

I hope y'all had an awesome Valentine's Day!  My husband gave me the cutest card - very appropriate for a knitter.  On the face, it says, "I was lost until I found you," and it has two white socks, one with a green stripe at the top and one with a pink stripe.  Inside, it says, "We're a perfectly matched pair!"  Oh gosh, knitting is permeating every part of our lives...

This video is my little, belated Valentine to you.  I hope you'll try it - I haven't seen many knitters use this seam, and don't you just love a new shortcut?

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Quick Updates

Nope, I haven't dropped off the face of the earth!  Just busy...

Seminars:  I am teaching at Newton's Knits in March!  Also this spring, I'll be at the Spring Fling at the Knit Knack Shop in Indiana and Purls of Joy in Minnesota.  I have fresh curriculum written, and we're going to have a fabulous spring seminar season.  I'm really excited about doing different demos and going to some amazing seminars.  It's hard to describe the excitement of a really big seminar with multiple teachers...try it, you'll be amazed.  Besides, I've reached the point where I get to see people the second or third time as I travel around, and knitters are the best, most awesome people. 

In the fall I'm teaching at Fingerlakes MK seminar in upstate New York.  I haven't been there before, but it sounds like another fantastic larger seminar.

Knit Club:  Here in Central Texas, the Knit Natters are meeting Saturday.  If you are driving distance, why not come see us?  I plan to demonstrate one of my new baby blankets (not sure which one).  John is coming to replace some Passap console batteries for my friend.  Our newest knitter (I mean just learning to MK, not new to the area), Denise, is coming, and she has already worked through the beginner lessons! 

This Poor, Neglected Blog:  There are several blog posts I need to put together, a couple of them terrific ideas and projects from readers.  I haven't forgotten...

Projects in the Hopper:  I'm in a crazed-creative state.  I have lists and lists of MK ideas and am doing some knitting when I get in from work in the evenings (work is desperately busy just now).  A pile of baby blankets has formed on the couch...I had the right sort of yarns and my club is doing them, so off I went with that list of ideas.  I had other projects I ought to have worked on first, but I couldn't stop myself - it was like a maddening itch.  There's another idea underway on my machine right now, and I got a panel knitted tonight.  One panel to go, then some sewing on that one.

Okay - some photos of the blankets I've been doing.  Note I have several ripply things, including a scrappy one, but eventually I settled on one ripply stitch that I liked, which is in the blue/white samples. There's also a honeycomb stitch one in lavender, but I think it's too plain and plan to make it again with some color interest.