Lessons Learned

So anyone who has been taught knitting by yours truly or has even just been knitting with me knows that I love using wood/bamboo needles. My dear friend and knitting enthusiast Blair mentioned in January that she didn’t enjoy these as much because she had some snap during a project. I had not encountered this before, and I was quite surprised to learn that this was even a possibility. And of course, just like a papercut never hurts until you look at it, I had a bamboo 2.75 mm dpn snap on me last month when making a pair of socks for my fella. Thankfully it was a set of 5 and I was only using 4 at a time so I had an extra.

The lesson learned out of this was to use steel dpns for the heavier weight yarn I was working with and to save the bamboo dpns for knitting socks using super fine / 1 weight yarns.

This week’s project is a medium sized mason jar cozy for Thing 1. She loves using these for her tea or smoothies, and a cozy is nice to have. I’m using Patons Canadiana in Green Tea so we’ll see how that works out.

My super enthusiastic learners want to keep on keeping on so we’re going to try to meet every second Tuesday at the library. Hope we get lots of former students and their friends!

Well I’m gonna get back to knitting a jar cozy and listening to Disc 1 of the third Beatles Anthology (which incidentally has a reggae type version of one of my favourite songs Ob-La-Di). Happy knitting, friends!

 

 

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Onwards and Upwards

This week marks the last of my teaching engagement with City Centre Community School. I got some great feedback from my learners on the curriculum (newly designed this year), and I will be implementing a lot of this for next January’s session. I am so fortunate to have had such a wonderful group of dedicated, enthusiastic learners. I am so proud of their hard work, and I hope they continue on their own knitting journeys.

This past Saturday was a huge event for the crafting community – the G’ma Circle’s annual fabric and yarn sale. I always enjoy attending this event – donating $10 for a great cause and getting great knitting supplies and yarn – this is a win/win situation! I got some chunky bright pink yarn as well as some spare needles to share with learners for next year’s classes. It was a well attended event, and it seemed to be enjoyed by all!

Nothing new or exciting for projects for me. I’ve been battling a cold the last little while so I haven’t been knitting much. Trying to find a fun pattern for medium sized Mason jar cozies for Thing 1, and trying to motivate myself to pick up the pug pattern again.

A huge thank you to the wonderful knitter who made the socks that I purchased at Lisa’s Cafe in Windsor, NS last weekend. My husband and my dad are now the proud owners of this talented lady’s handiwork.

That’s all folks! Let’s chat again soon.

Happy crafting,

Krista

 

 

Caturday!

Well it’s Caturday, and I thought I would give a quick update on my knitting adventures and give a shout out to my awesome husband who is taking Thing 2 to her snowboard practice … and did not wake me up.

I finished the mittens last week, and they met with approval from my fella. He wore them yesterday on a walk with Thing 2. The thumbs are still not sitting right with me. Any ideas on how to get rid of that hole when you pick up stitches to attach it to the main mitten?

The learners at CCCS are doing so awesome! I am continually impressed at how quickly this group are picking up new techniques and creating some fantastic products. Last week we made turban headbands out of super chunky yarn. Mine is done but I need to sew the seam … ugh. I wonder if Thing 1 would like the headband to keep her warm – and stylish – as she wanders back and forth to class in Montreal.

This week’s goal is to finish the second sock for Chris. I am using the Briggs and Little heavy sock pattern. No issues so far. There is an 11 inch cuff so that is taking a bit of time though. They’ll be great for our snowshoe adventures though once they’re finished!

I also lucked into a great $10 hardcover knitting book at Indigo last weekend. The Bargain Books section is the first place I go to when I get to a bookstore, and I have had some great successes! I bought a copy of Custom Knits Accessories, and so far it is proving to be an interesting read. Lots of great theory behind knitting techniques.

Well readers, I’ll sign off here. Until my next post, I wish you happy crafting!

 

 

 

 

Happy New Year!

Hello craft-minded readers and other visitors who have dropped by to read my thoughts on knitting, etc. It’s 2016, and I’m working towards reaching some knitting goals. One of those goals is posting more on this blog. Another is stashbusting! As my favourite Doctor Who, David Tennant, says: “Allons-y!”

I’m teaching beginner knitting this winter at City Centre School and as long as the weather stays good, Tuesday will be our fourth class. I feel very honoured to have been asked by the current instructor to teach alongside her! Even though we sometime have different ways of approaching a knitting piece (e.g. casting on preferences), everything seems to be going great. The students are so determined to learn, and they are in fantastic spirits when working through a new stitch or technique. I am really going to miss these Tuesday night when the classes wrap up. Hopefully some of the group will continue knitting past our Tuesday nights.

My fella, who incidentally has a wildly popular blog, and I had a fantastic discussion yesterday on teaching our craft. I have a strong interest in philosophy of creativity, and hope to contribute more to this on an academic level someday. Stay tuned.

For projects, I’m finishing up a pair of mittens for Chris. Ugh – trying to create a thumb without a hole where it attaches to the main mitten. Let’s hope the second time at this works. I’m using my favourite knitting pattern from the KnitSimple Knitting Workshops book. Afterwards, I have one more sock to finish for him. I’m using the Briggs & Little sock pattern and their Tuffy brand yarn. This is a basic sock pattern that I would recommend to anyone wanting to make socks.

After that project, who knows …

 

Same again, bartender

Well, I’m going to give the pug pattern the old college try tonight. Keep in mind I have only been able to work on the muzzle part of the pug and have ripped the entire project twice now. When ever the incredible day arrives that I can post a photo of this completed project … I actually can’t even imagine it so I don’t know how I’m going to react! One way or another, this project is getting completed. I can’t believe this pattern is categorized as easy. I ran this pattern by my mom, who has been knitting forever, and she said, “I’m not bothering with that.” Part of my issue could be using the Red Heart Super Saver yarn. Normally, I think this yarn is just fine for most projects but it seems to be giving me some grief with this one. Anyways, enough about that. You know I’ll keep you posted on my progress.

So thanks to the magic of Facebook, I heard about a new knitting shop that recently opened in Kensington. It’s called the Trailside Knitting Shoppe and you can see their FB page here. I’m super jazzed to visit this weekend.

Happy knitting friends!

Still Knitting

Well folks, I’m back to share my knitting adventures with you all. I feel like I’ve been on hiatus from this blog longer than Harper Lee with her second book. As an aside, I haven’t read Go Set a Watchman yet, but hope to this fall.

I’ve been knitting lots over the summer and have lots of projects picked out for autumn. I made some dishcloths and coasters for my daughter who is living in residence in Montreal for her first year of university. I made a crocheted blanket for a sweet new baby boy who arrived in August and two more baby items for babies who arrived in September.

Recently, I purchased a pattern on Etsy to knit a pug for my youngest daughter who is mad about pugs. This pattern is challenging me greatly, but I’m too stubborn to throw in the towel just yet. The likelihood of me making this pattern again is not good. Tonight I plan to rip it out completely and start over. Keep you all posted about my progress. Maybe some of the knitters at the Sunday afternoon group at Beanz can lend a hand.

Feel free to share a story about a pattern that caused you grief, or what you’re working on these days!

Happy knitting friends!

News and knitworthy

Good morning all,

I’m up early on a Saturday morning after falling asleep last night watching TED Talks on Netflix with Chris. So, here I am tackling my list of things I need to do – and some that I just plain want to do, such as writing to my knitting pals. Thank you Island Chocolates for letting me buy a super large bag of your special blend tea; it’s a super start to what looks like a rainy Saturday.

So I haven’t been knitting as much as usual but I still have some fun things to share!

I’m still working on Chris’s socks. I’m happy with how they are turning out since they are only my second pair. I’ve gotten an impressive amount of practice ripping back work on 4 dpns with fingerling yarn. It basically requires all my concentration, taking off my glasses (which I need for 99% of my life activities), and usually culminates with me thinking: “I could never be a surgeon.”

Also I think I found an error in the pattern. The junior knitter in me says “Uhhhh, are you sure? An expert probably wrote this.” but my logician side says “No. No. No. This argument is not valid! Do not proceed!” So just because you are knitting on 4 dpns, it does not follow that you are knitting in the round and cannot expect stockinette stitch when knitting two rows of K all stitches. I’m going to make a note in the pattern for my next kick at the can.

My handy fella made me a sweet stitch marker out of a lone earring. I had a lovely pair of earrings that I purchased many years ago at the Fredericton Farmer’s Market, but unfortunately a few weeks ago one went missing. I hated to throw the remaining earring out so I asked Chris if he could make it into a stitch holder for me and he did a fantastic job. Looking forward to the next project requiring a marker.

Last weekend I had the pleasure of going to Cricket Cove in Saint John, NB for the first time. What a wonderful time I had! I would love to have a store like this in Charlottetown. It was chock full of unique yarns for a diverse amount of projects and had lots of great classes in store for all levels of knitters. I got a lovely colourful ball to make myself (yes, me!) a chunky winter scarf and possibly a headband, and I purchased lovely (and cheap!) wool from a local mill Briggs and Little to make Chris some thick winter socks.

Well readers, it’s time to get back to my project. Let’s talk soon!

Krista

Show and Share Sunday

So I took the first pair of socks into the office to get some feedback. It was largely positive, except for David who doesn’t count anyway 😉 He had a fantastic time using them as puppets though for an impromptu performance.

I also wore the socks for the first time with my DM’s for my Saturday errands. I’m honestly looking forward to making another pair for myself. So without further ado, here are some pics:

DSC01610DSC01611

Due to a miscalculation while doing the gusset, the toe on the right sock is a little wacky. Although the pattern wasn’t a good one to start with, I really did learn a lot. My mom was a huge help during this process; without her assistance and patience I would have not finished this project!

Now to get back to working on Chris’s socks so I can get all the baby projects done for August. There are four babies coming in late August-early September, and I’d really like each to have a special handmade present for their arrival! Will keep you all posted.

Peace out,

K

It’s a knitting miracle!

Okay – maybe not when you see the finished product but still a major milestone for me. I’ve always wanted to learn to make socks and I actually finished my first pair with a heel (with the horrible pattern that is literally in my blue recycling bin as I type this). I got this pattern from a Michael’s craft store knitting class that I signed up for over three years ago – and yes – it has taken me over three years to finally finish these socks. My mom was a huge part in helping me decipher the pattern as it was very vague in sections.

So the socks actually do not match in sections but they fit my feet so gosh darn it, I’m gonna wear them!

There is a great illustrated pattern in the Knit Simple book referenced in previous posts so I am working on a pair of socks for Chris as he has not gotten many knitted goods lately. I’m using some Kroy yarn in Flax that I got on sale at Owls Hollow. And amazingly I am excited to work on this pattern. I learned some good stuff from the first socks, like turning the heel is not nearly as hard as it sounded, and the kitchener graft for the toe is actually pretty fun to do! Stay tuned for updates on Chris’s socks.

My sister-in-law liked the hat I made her! I finally got to give it to her last weekend when we took my niece to a Disney Princess meet & greet. That’s always a nice feeling. I might make one for my mother-in-law for her birthday as I think it would look lovely on her. Still not sure on what colour yarn to get her.

Two new babies are coming in late August, early September so I have gotten some sweet baby yarns to make something for these blessings. Suggestions are welcome!

Well dear readers, I’m going to work on the socks for a little while longer (and procrastinate cleaning the house). Talk again soon.

Krista

Spoiler Alert: Poor Grammar Ahead

Well textile crafting friends, to use a George W. Bush-ism, I have “misunderestimated” the amount of yarn needed to finish a project.

I finished making the lovely pink turban headband from my last post and I’m really looking forward to wearing it on some grey spring days. I thought I would make a matching one for my 11 year old (while I’m still cool enough for us to have matching accessories) thinking “Aha, this is a great way to finish up a mystery ball of yarn.” Well, I’m about 1/3 of the way through this headband and I’m really uncertain about whether I am going to have enough yarn. And part of the excitement is that I have no idea what this yarn is called or where you can get it! 🙂

The cuff is finished for sock number #2. I am going to ask my wonderful mother to assist me in turning the heel as this pattern is terrible. Man I am really going to enjoy these socks when they are finished. I love working with the Kroy sock yarn because it is so colourful. A real treat for the feet!

No community school tonight since schools were cancelled today. I enjoy knitting with the little group and seeing their progress. Fingers crossed for next week’s class.

Until next time friends!

(PS – how many were taken in by the title of this post? Considering I was an English major and all.)