Monday, December 17, 2007

On the Block

Well, I'm very proud of myself. I seem to have managed to blog once a week for several weeks in a row. I hope I can keep it up. I'm officially on vacation right now, which is excellent news for me, because it means there's lots of time for knitting. I've been plugging away at socks mostly in preparation for my trip to my parents' place in Mississauga. Socks make such great bus knitting, but I'm easily bored, so I have three socks ready to go.

First up is the Azure socks:

You might remember, I started theses socks initially for sitting in waiting rooms. This didn't actually happen. I forgot to bring the sock, and as it turns out, didn't actually wind up waiting long enough to knit anything even if I had brought it. Yay. So dental xrays are done with no significant problems which makes me very happy and my bank account even happier. And my driver's license has been renewed which means I can drive my parents' kick ass car over the holidays!

Next up:
Southwestern Socks by Wendy at WendyKnits. This is the first sock. I still have to wind the second skein so I can start the second sock. Which I will do. Despite the seeming case of startitis I'm nursing. It looks like startitis, but really, I'm being prepared. The yarn is the Mirasol Hacho I bought at vendors night at the Knitting Guild. It's a sport/DK weight, so these socks are turning out really well.

Next in line, and final sock on the block:

This is Cairi's Sweetheart designed by Bronte. I tried to put a link to this, but for some reason doing so kept kicking me out of the internet. Thank goodness Blogger autosaves now. Anyway, the yarn is some Regia-4 ply I had kicking around. It's knitting up pretty well. I love the colour. It even matches the mattress on my spare bed. It's the small things, I know.
Speaking of blocking:
I finally got around to blocking the body of my Not-So-Khaki Cables. Here they are looking all pretty. The yarn has softened up dramatically, and I'm no longer afraid of putting it on my body. Hopefully it'll fit. So this process was in preparation for knitting on the button band this week because I can't work on all those socks if I want to take them on my trip. The sweater will be too ungainly to pack though, so I can work on it to my heart's content. I can't wait for it to dry. You might be able to see at the top of the picture why my Caleb is also known as el Plumpo. He's been told to keep off the black sweater. So far, so good. He's got better things to do.
Like this:
Birdwatching. That puffed up bird in the tree is a source of endless entertainment. Anyway, with that, I'll go off to find something to do that doesn't involve knitting socks. Hmmm, what to do...

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Quick Update

So, I've been having a tough time getting inspired for the season lately. It's always a little difficult for me, I think partly because the commercialism disgusts me quite a bit. As a pagan within a predominantly Christian environment, things can be awkward. Especially since my family is part of that predominantly Christian group. What can you do?

So yesterday, a couple friends and I gathered together for a decidedly pagan ritual masquerading as Christmas :)

The tree has been trimmed. It was fun. We had food and watched Love Actually (which I highly recommend to anyone who hasn't seen it), and listened to holiday music.

Plus, I've been working away at that holiday knitting.

My sister's endpaper mitts. These are coming along well. I ought to be done with them in a couple of days.

And because I have no willpower :)

I broke down and cast on for a new sock. I had to try out my new needles... right? Anyway, this is the toe for a pair of Azure Socks from the new issue of Knitty. It's the Koigu KPPPM I got a couple of months ago. My thought was to have it for sitting in waiting rooms. Next Saturday, I have a dentist appointment, and have to renew my drivers lisence (which should have been done months ago, thank goodness I don't have a car). I suspect I'll have a pretty long wait for that too. This will be much more portable than the endpaper mitts. They will hopefully be done by then anyway.

So that's it. Still not feeling super festive. I have a bit of a cold hovering around the edges. But I'm trying. Maybe once I see my folks in a couple of weeks. Here's hoping :)

Monday, December 3, 2007

More Mail Order Yarn!

It's hard to believe that it's December already. Where did November go? It's snowy and miserable outside so imagine my pleasure when I opened my mailbox and found not a notice to pick up my package at the post office (which requires 2 bus rides each way), but my package snuggled inside my mailbox. My second mail order yarn purchase has arrived (mostly). This time it was from the Knitter and part of my order is missing! I don't know where it is. The package hadn't been tampered with, but the email saying it had been sent had everything in it. I'll give it a few days to be sure it's not still on its way, but waaaaahhhh! I want my yarn!

Not to worry, though cause I did get this:
And this:
Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock in the Blackberry colourway, and Cherry Tree Hill Sockittome in Misty Moor. These are two of the yarns I've been dying to try, and now I... have to wait until holiday knitting is done. Nuts!
Speaking of the holiday knitting, I've been avoiding it:
Conwy socks by Nancy Bush from Knitting on the Road. I like this pattern. I was a little unsure about the toe construction, but they seem to be comfy anyway. I tend to like a flat kitchenered stitch toe (recall my nutso love of kitchener) and this is more of a star shape. It makes an odd "seam" across the top and bottom, which concerned me, because I don't like boughten socks when they have a seam. But I'm completely unaware of it when they're on. I'm glad I gave it a shot. This stitch pattern is really easy to memorize and it looks really sharp. I could see a sweater in this stitch pattern. Hmmm.... I probably ought to finish the sweaters I'm working on from patterns before I try and make up my own.
So that leaves the holiday knitting that needs to get done. I don't know why I'm balking so badly, it's only one project, and it's mitts, so it's not all that big. On the plus side, I have yet to break out my new needles and some of my nifty new yarn.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Online Yarn

Recently, with the increased strength of the Canadian dollar, I decided it was high time to try out the online shopping waters. There is just so much yarn available online that I couldn't hope to get ahold of at my LYS. As much as I love supporting local shops, it seems like a far more cost effective way to get unusual yarns. So I placed a couple of trial orders. The first one came on Tuesday. Here it is:
My very first Knit Picks order. I was extremely impressed with the service I got from them. There were emails telling me all about my order while it was in transit, including one letting me know when it crossed the border! That seemed above and beyond what I would expect. Kudos to Knit Picks.
So inside the box were a few lovely things that I'm looking forward to playing with.
Essential sock yarn:
This is Essential Tweed in Russet on the left and Essential in Shorline Twist on the right. Nice straightforward sock yarn for simple socks. Excellent!
Even better, though, is this:
Gloss in Dusk. 70% merino wool, 30% silk. This glows! And it's so incredibly soft, I just want to hold it. This will have to be something incredibly special. Not sure what yet.
Whenever I decide, I have these to knit them with:

I've been hankering to try Knit Picks needles for a long time. I've heard lots of things about them on other people's blogs, so this was my chance. I got two each of 2.25 and 2.5 mm circs. 24" length. I don't know why I haven't looked at the fixed needles before. I'd been focussed on their options needles. But these are lovely. I haven't knit with them yet, but when a person is used to paying $20 for a single Addi Turbo circ, to find some that are seemingly just as nice for $5, it just seems like a "duh" moment. We'll see. I have to finish some holiday knitting first. Don't know if I'll hold out.

The final treat in the box was this:
Victorian Lace Today by Jane Sowerby. I've been wanting this book since it came out, so Yay! I think this will be the source of the pattern that is destined for my Silk/Yak laceweight. Still have to wait until holiday knitting is done. Guess I'd better get back to work on it instead of hanging out here. More on that holiday stuff later, beter go.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

First Snow

First Snow
Originally uploaded by KnitLizard1
So I woke up this morning and saw this. Must knit faster.

I'm gonna eat you little fishies...

Lots of knitting chez Lizard. I've been mostly posting stuff to Ravelry lately. It's slow going, but a little bit at a time will see it done. In the meantime, unfortunately, I've been neglecting this little blog. Part of the problem has been that my rechargeable batteries for my camera gave out. All of them. I don't know how it happened, but they weren't cheap and I'm a little annoyed. But nonetheless, I broke down and bought some disposable ones and now have progress shots to show you.

First up, is a sock I don't think I've blogged about. It's Conwy from Nancy Bush's Knitting on the Road. It's a pretty cable pattern, which I think shows nicely in the taupe yarn I chose. I thought these could be a simple dress sock. This is actually the progress on the second sock. I finished the first sock and actually cast on right away! Impressed, no?

The yarn is Regia 4 ply, and it's knit on 2.5 mm dpns. A little snug, which is mildly irritating when I want to put them on, but is the way I like my socks. They don't slouch down that way. And for trouser socks, I think they'll be perfect.

Next. Lots and lots of endpapers. I knit Eunny Jang's Endpaper Mitts for myself nearly a year ago, and have had a lot of enthusiasm over them. This boggles my mind because I think I did a terrible job on them. This time, I think they're turning out better. The first pair started.

I've just started the thumb gusset at this point. These ones are for a co-worker and are knit in Dale Stork 100% cotton on 3.5 mm dpns (I think).

Then there's endpaper mitts again.

This time they're for my sister who cleverly lost one of the lovely alpaca Fetchings I knit for her last year. This time they're to her specifications: black and hot pink, to match her coat. And they're plain old superwash wool. Jawoll by Lang, to be specific. They are also, if you notice, being knit on 2 circs. I tried this method for the first time with my Red Dwarf socks, and am a complete convert.

Speaking of the Red Dwarf socks, I finished Them. Mostly over the first 2 seasons of the show. Yes, I've said it before, and it's guaranteed to come up again. I'm a geek. Deal with it :)

So here's a photo of them looking very odd. They look odd on too, just a little less odd, and I haven't figured out how to take a modelled shot of knee socks. I think I'll have to get help with it. I'll post it when I have it

Incidentally, this is the yarn in the ball. I like the colours much more in the ball than in the socks. They're really comfy, so I'll wear them anyway, but they'll be worn under jeans

The pattern is Turtle Girl's Red Dwarf socks knee high version. The yarn is Jawoll color sport. I knit them on two 3 mm circs. My first time, as I said. I really like this and have ordered 2 sets of circs from Knitpicks for knitting socks from now on. I'm finding the dpns really cumbersome now.

So anyway, I'm finally done this post, and have been working on it since about 9:30 this morning. That's what comes from trying to sneak it in at work :) So hopefully, I'll be back on track for at least weekly updates of the blog. Fingers crossed.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007


Someday I will get the hang of this blogging thing. I cannot, for the life of me, figure out how some people manage to update daily and still have time to make a living and... you know... knit. I've come to the conclusion that they must be blogging from work. This is discouraged at my place of employment, so I am stealth blogging right now.

I have no photos to offer, due to the fact that I can't connect my camera to my office computer, and while I might have something on my Flickr account, I don't have the time to fiddle with it, because my supervisor could return at any moment.

Mostly, I wanted to point out that I am still kicking. I finished the sleeves on my Not-So-Kakhi Cables cardi. Next up: blocking. Which I may or may not bother with. I probably ought to so that the button band knits on nicely. Damn! It's pretty chilly in my office right now and a nice wooly sweater would be just the ticket.

I have also been knitting some knee socks with some yarn I bought, but have not blogged. It's sport weight and stripes in a really weird, erratic pattern. I'm not sure how much I like the way the colours are coming out, but I love the socks. Trouble is, I've run out of yarn and will have to buy a whole new ball of yarn with strange random striping tendencies for a total of about 5 inches of knitting. Grrr. Oh well. What can you do?

My biggest news, though is that I'm on Ravelry! This is truly awesome. I've been working on moving all my pictures to Flickr so I can put them up there. So I'm KnitLizard, and will be spending far too much time there over the next little while. I'll try and update the blog during that time as well, but I make no promises. In the meantime, I'd better post this and get off here before I get busted. Happy knitting.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Yarn Haul

It's amazing how much can happen in a month's time. Since my last post, I've finished the body portions of my not-so-kakhi cables cardigan, and am most of the way finished on the sleeves. It's pretty boring stuff though, so I won't post pictures. I knit Shedir from Knitty's special breast cancer issue, but forgot to take pictures. Oops. But I also made some additions to my stash! It's going to be pretty photo heavy now, so bear with me.

This is Briggs & Little Tuffy:

The colour is Blue Jean, and while the photo is blurry, the shot on the right shows the colour pretty well. I got this while on a yarn crawl with a fellow knitter prior to a volunteer stint for the Ottawa Knitting Guild at a fibre festival at the textile museum in Almonte. We stopped at The Real Wool Shop in Carleton Place where I acquired 6 skeins of the Tuffy first, then at the Mississippi Blacksheep Gallery where I got this:

This is about 1900 yards of silk/yak laceweight. Possibly even cobweb, it's pretty fine. It's also so soft, I actually walked several blocks to find a bank machine in order to bring it home with me. Mississippi Blacksheep Gallery is really nice, but they don't take debit. Bear that in mind if you plan to visit. And you should, especially if you're a weaver.
Then there were my lovely parents who I love. They went to Australia in September (without me, which I don't love) and brought me back some yarn!!!

This is what seems to be DK weight yarn (21 st to 10 cm). It's 8 ply in 50 g balls, of which I have 10. They're natural colour spun from black sheep. It's a really pretty brownish grey colour that is hard to make out in the picture. I would have tried for more shots, but the wind was blowing really hard on my balcony and I still had more yarn to photograph. I'm not sure what I'm going to make with this, but it has to be really special. The fact that my folks not only tracked down yarn while in Australia, but also hauled it home with them, makes this the most special yarn in my stash. And considering that silk/yak stuff, that's saying a lot.
After that was the Knitting Guild's vendors night. I spent less than I budgeted, for that I am proud and I got a great haul:

This is Hacho from the Mirasol project which means that a portion of the money goes towards building schools for the children of Peruvian shepherds who are responsible for the sheep whose wool made this yarn. The colour is called Coral Reef. Pretty worthy cause and some really pretty yarn.

Koigu KPPM. I've read lots of blogs where the joys of Koigu have been described, and when I saw some available, I had to have it. The colour is P436 and is so pretty, I can't even begin to tell you.
Finally, this is hand dyed by a new company called Sweet Paprika Designs. This is their Messa di Voce sock yarn in the Blood Orange colourway. So pretty! It was really hard to choose a colour. I wish I could have bought all of them. Such is life, and I still need to find the funding for blocking wires so I can show you Swan Lake (previously known as Mystery Stole 3), plus the possibility of Yule knitting. Yikes, is it really almost the end of October?
Anyway, that's all for now. I wish I had some actual knitting to show off. I swear I have been knitting! Really. I have. I'll show you next time. Until then, here's some naughty critters:
I know they don't look terribly naughty here, but I'm sure Caleb is off to get into something or other. Possibly my knitting. That's all, I'm off.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Almost There

So much knitting has been going on around here in the last little while. I finished the knitting on my Mystery Stole. I have yet to get ahold of some blocking wires though, so here it sits:

Nothing like a lovely pile of knitted... something. I think it's going to look really great once it's blocked though. I've thoroughly enjoyed knitting this project and am sad to have it over. I was a little nervous toward the end. I'm always nervous about running out of yarn on every project I have ever worked on. As a result of this paranoia, I tend to buy too much yarn. This time, I stuck with the yardage recommended by the designer (Pink Lemon Twist, incidentally, check it out) and if you look at the top of the photo, you'll see what had me so nervous this time. Yeah. That's all that's left. Whew! Just squeaked it in. Next time I post this, it will be blocked. I might even be convinced to try a modeled shot. I'll think about it.

In the meantime, the weather (briefly) changed around here to a wee bit chilly. So I whipped out some of my UFOs. I looked at the Michael Kors one and was about to work on it, when I found a gross error in it which will require a great deal of fiddling, cursing and possible single malt scotch. Definately not television knitting. So I put it away again, and pulled out not-so-kakhi cables. And I finished the left front portion of the cardigan:

I also cast on and got to work on the right front half. Not too shabby for a couple of days knitting even if I do say so myself. I'm finding myself enchanted by this pattern again. It's really hard to tell with black, but the combination of cables and seed stitch is making me very happy. I don't tend to like cables with a lot of reverse stockingette, so this is a very good design for me. And the amount of seed stitch is fairly small, so I'm not going insane with the back and forth of the yarn. More on this in the not too distant future I think.

On the not quite knitting front:

I made stitch markers! Not too bad for a non-beader. I had no idea what I was doing, so I just used earring findings. I figured that they could work both as solid and split ring markers. Anyway, there are 8 of each style, and I like them. The ones in the middle were a pair of earrings that I had only worn once before they broke. Teach me to buy cheap earrings, but I was annoyed to say the least. Now they have new life and I feel much better about them. The ones on the right, could actually be worn as earrings. They're my favourite. I think I'd like to read up on beading and try again with something a little more complicated than this, but in the meantime. Woo Hoo, stitch markers!

Now back to some cabling and Supernatural DVDs!

Sunday, September 9, 2007


Wow! So I was doing so well with my mystery stole. I kept plugging along, almost always on track. Now that the last clue has come and gone, the incentive to keep knitting is gone. I want to see it finished, but I don't want it to be over. Kinda crazy, huh? I have been working on it, just very slowly. I'm currently waiting to start row 188 of the final wing section. There are 193. The end is in sight. I didn't photograph it though, it looks pretty much the same as last time :) Next time it appears on here, it will be finished and (hopefully) blocked. I need to get me some blocking wires.

I've also been working away on a pair of socks for a very dear friend of mine. She asked for hot pink ankle socks, and I just happened to have some hot pink Regia in the stash. Sweet. Anyway, I don't think she reads this blog, but I couldn't say for certain, so those pics won't show until she gets them.

This all doesn't make for very good blog fodder, so I'll bring on the most recent purchases.
There's been stash enhancement:
Dale Stork sock yarn. 100% cotton in black and white. These are destined to be another pair of Eunny Jang's Endpaper Mitts for a co-worker. Also Tofutsies #724 - Foot the Bill. This is a yarn I've been reading a lot about in the blogosphere, and have been dying to try. I noticed this afternoon that in the September 2007 issue of Magknits, there is a gorgeous sock pattern using this exact yarn and colourway. Fate? Hmmmm...
There has also been library enhancement:
This is something I haven't really blogged about before. I usually prefer to get my patterns free online, because I like to spend my money on fibre, not books. I also am employed by a library, so I have feelings about borrowing books, not buying them :) But every once in a while a book is published that is so awesome, that I have to have it. These were not purchased at the same time (about a month or two apart), but I thought I ought to blog them both. Fitted Knits by Stefanie Japel and Romantic Hand Knits by Annie Modesitt. With any luck, there will be projects out of these started before the year is up.
Other than that, there's been very little action in my stash. I've sworn to finish some things before I start new ones. That's a little daunting, so I don't count socks. As far as I'm concerned, socks don't count. Incidentally, neither does sock yarn. I can't be held responsible for what happens in the sock yarn department. I suspect it might be a little bit like Vegas. So on that note, I'll sign off and see if I can make some progress on a sweater.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Wings and Toes

Well, MS3 is winding down. The final clue is released tomorrow. I'm unsure how I feel about that. It's kind of like how I felt when Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows was released. I don't want the knit-along to be over, but I want to see how the whole thing comes together. Personally I'm hoping for lots and lots of beads. I suspect that lace and beads may be my newest obsession. Ah well, it could be worse. And hey, I've got pictures! So on with it.

Clue 5 completed.

Just the wing portion of clue 5:

Close-up on the feathers in the wing:

And because I also have shots of clue 6 coming up, I thought a page break was in order. Behold the absolute cutest little tootsies:

Also, behold the amount of cat hair on my couch. Blech! Are we ready? No? Okay, something else to keep you going.... hmmm. How about this?

This was just one of the pies that my cousin John baked at the cottage. They were phenomenal!

Okay, enough dawdling. Here it is. My stole is up to date, even if my blog hasn't been. My finished clue 6:

I think it's looking pretty good. The line where the wing meets the body of the stole is a little harsh, but I don't think I mind too much. I love the feathers! But I've been working on Icarus off and on for a while, so that's a given. I just wish I had thought to add beads to it. Ah well, next time.

So I'm ready for clue 7 tomorrow, except I'm going out of town this weekend, and will be spending most of the day tomorrow on the road. No internet! Waaaaah! On the plus side, my parents (whose home I'm crashing) have a colour printer, so I can say goodbye to my pink highlighter. I won't be taking the stole with me, though. It's gotten far too large. It is, in fact as wide as my couch is deep, and who knows how long. I wonder how I'm going to block it. I'll worry about that later.

That's it for now. There has been a minor stash enhancement, but I forgot to take pictures of it. I was too busy admiring little pink toesies. I'll get to that next time.

Saturday, August 4, 2007

Clue 4 Done!

Wow! There's been a lot of chatter in my inbox since clue 5 and the theme were posted on the Mystery Stole page. I had thought I would hold off on mentioning the theme in my blog in case someone who wanted to be surprised stumbled across it. But since attempting to sort through my inbox, I figure the cat is out of the bag anyway. Thank goodness I couldn't wait to learn the theme, or I might have been seriously distressed to have opened my email and the first message there gave it to me.

Anyway, that's neither here nor there. What is, is that I have finally finished clue 4.

I think I'll have to figure out a better way to photograph this when I finish the next clue. I'll worry about that later though. Right now I just want to get started on my wing.

I finally saw Swan Lake about a year ago, and I just fell in love! So now that I know that's the theme, I'm extra excited. I wondered about the motif from Leda's Dream being in this stole too. I thought it might be something about swans but dismissed it, thinking it was too obvious. Typical of me, overthinking things. So, I'm determined to not do that here anymore. I'm going ahead and knitting the wing as it's written and trusting that it will turn out. Melanie obviously knows what she's doing. What a designer!

Anyway off to knit some more. Later!