Saturday, May 31, 2008

Coundtown


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Originally uploaded by kbshee
Almost. Al. Most. Done.

Next week is Week 10, also known as Dead Week around the U of O. The last week of the term...and it is anything but Dead. Not sure how it got that name, other than professors aren't to assign any project or administer a test that accounts for a significant part of the student's grade (and yes, there is a percentage number associated with that, which I have no idea what it is). Apparently there was a time when many professors gave finals during Week 10 just so they could start their vacations a little early by pretending finals week isn't there. And hence, Dead week.

In my small class, my students are presenting projects so I'm pretty much done there. Their final portfolios are due on Tuesday of dead week. I have two lectures left in my big class and then their final is Wednesday of finals week, and that's it!

Anyway. I have been knitting. It seems like I spent a long time knitting these Wollmeise socks but they're done. Wollmeise is wonderful! I haven't worked on the mitts for a while, but I did start another pair of socks (and they're adorable) and the Portland sweater from A Fine Fleece. Pics soon.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Summer of String Pt. 1


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Originally uploaded by kbshee
I mentioned on an earlier post that I was thinking about knitting string bags for Christmas gifts this year.

To tell the truth, I was also thinking about making ornaments that were balloons covered with yarn coated in glue, and then once it is dry you pop the balloon. Does this ring a bell with any other former Girl Scouts?

Anyway, I digress. I finished the first string bag which is Jodie Danenberg's Saturday Market Bag. I altered it by knitting in the round, knitting a flat bottom to pick up stitches to knit in the round, and then tying the straps at the top in a knot. Anyway...this knit up very fat and looks good. It is much stretchier than it looks. This was knit in Cotton Fleece which is one of my favorite workhorse yarns. So overall I'm very pleased.

I found numerous string bag patterns...I've posted some links over at KR if you're interested.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

What's that light?


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Originally uploaded by kbshee
You know, that light way down there, at the end of that tunnel?

I love Memorial Day weekend. It is really the official 'start' of the 'end' of our school year. I know I should pay a bit more attention to what the holiday means...supporting and honoring those who have served our country. But by this time of the year, my colleagues and I are so worn out that all we can see if the mid-June finish line.

This happens for a couple of reasons. The quarter system means we have two ten-week terms with a minimal of prep time in between, and it is really a 20=week educational fun fest where sustaining teaching energy is hard. On top of that, the school tries to get so much done during the last month...basically, the work of an entire school year (searches, reviews, curriculum revision, planning for NEXt year) gets done in a four week period. On top of that, our graduating seniors are now officially, as a group, freaked out that they don't have jobs. And on top of that, it is this time of the year when other students realize that they haven't done any work this term and are likely to fail, and want to know what they can do to make up the points.

So all these things come together now. Is it any wonder that stockinette stitch is all I can handle? I finished the tank...love it, love the Ty Dy, love that I only had to kitchener the back center and mattress the shoulders to put it all together. Thanks Amie!


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Originally uploaded by kbshee
Given that I can see the end of the tunnel, though, I've been thinking about summer knitting. There are a couple things that I'm considering:

1. The Summer of String bags, as I've mentioned on a previous post. This is the first one...Jodie's Saturday Market bag in cotton fleece. I'm about halfway done after about 2-3 hours of knitting. I modified Jodie's pattern by knitting it in the round with a small bottom. Fun knit. Fast knit. What else could you ask for? I've got a lot of cotton fleece in the stash, as well as some hemp and some Louet Euroflax.

2. Something cabled from A Fine Fleece. Beautiful book. I have yarn from the Irish Ewe for the first one and some paton's classic for the second one. I'm pretty yarned up, lucky for me.

3. The black and white sweater from Knitting Classic Style, which I'll make with Navy blue and white. Rowan botany is in the stash for this.

4. The EZ top down fair isle. More rowan botany in stash for this.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Friday already?


wollmeise
Originally uploaded by kbshee
Where, oh where, has this week gone?

Anyway, it's Friday. A week ago it was almost 100 degrees out. Today we'll be lucky if it breaks 60. And it is damp and cool (duh). So I've finished most of my work and will start taking some deep breaths soon.

I've had a little Christmas brainstorm. I've stopped knitting gifts for family for Christmas because only one family member appreciates it (Hi Candace!). But I've been thinking that I'll knit string bags this year. I've got the yarn in stash, i've got a bunch of string bag patterns, and it is a good gift (environmentally friendly, easy to ship, and who could really dislike a string bag?). (I'm sure Candace can name a few people but we'll leave it at that).

Here's a wollmeise sock that I've been working on for a while. More on the wonder that is wollmeise soon.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Talk to the Hand...


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Originally uploaded by kbshee
...that's wearing the fair isle mitt!

I'm about 2/3 of the way through with the first fair isle mitten...it seems to be going OK. I'm still not sure about this fair isle thing, but I like having a somewhat difficult project to work on for half an hour or an hour or so every day. I think I like cables better though.

It is starting to be a bit magical, though, how each row adds another dimension of depth to the pattern. LEt's hope for a very cold winter!

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Our Amazing Cody Dog

We've had a little spell of very hot weather (highs in the 90s) this week, and so we thought we'd try to get the dogs out for a little exercise and fun by taking them over to Alton Baker Park. There's a nice pond on the canoe canal where we've often seen dogs playing, but we've never taken our own dogs there. So off we went to Alton Baker Saturday morning.

Cody, loving the water as he does, had a great time. Juneau even got her feet wet a bit, which is a start.

Tim took several videos with our little Canon camera, and this one is my favorite. Cody is very focused on fetching, and in this video he grabbed a stick in the water before he realized he was meant to fetch the orange float. Always intrepid, Cody manages to fulfill both tasks.


Saturday, May 17, 2008

Tale of the Tank


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Originally uploaded by kbshee
I've been working on this side-to-side tank for the past week, and for some reason am enchanted by it. Why?

1. The pattern is by Amie who, as I mentioned earlier, is an occasional reader of this blog and a big animal lover like meself.
2. The yarn is so fun..TyDy by Knit 1 Crochet 2. I don't think I've ever used any yarn by this company, and it is really nice yarn.
3. There's no tellin' what those crazy stripes will do! I love watching what happens as I knit.
4. It is mindless knitting with just a bit of attention-paying. Great for reading and/or TV watching. However, please note that Amie's 'real' pattern, in Clara Parke's "Knitter's Book of Yarn", is a bit more involved as it uses different colored yarns and a nice stripe pattern that would require counting of rows and changing of colors. But it is still fun.
5. I'm so used to 'traditional' knitting that every once in a while I look at the knitting and am completely confused as to what I am making. Delightful!! Really!
6. And while in most cases I would never wear this many colors all at one time, it is gonna be a hot summer so why not?

Friday, May 16, 2008

What I MEME to say..

I have a couple people who have tagged me for memes and I promise, PROMISE I'll get around to it because I do love a good meme. The one today from Sheila is first on my list:


1. What was I doing 10 years ago?
I had just finished my dissertation and we had our house in the market in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, with plans to move to Oregon at the end of August. I had just been 'hooded' at around this time.

2. What are 5 things on my to-do list for today (not in any particular order):
1. Read seven student projects.
2. Take some pictures of knitting
3. Take a deep breath...this week has been incredibly busy
4. Mail some yarn from the destash
5. KNIT!

3) Snacks I enjoy:
Saltines.
Cashews (but we can't keep 'em in the house, they'd disappear immediately>
Chocolate anything.

4) Things I would do if I were a billionaire:
Not work.
Start a foundation involving animals and people.
Lease a jet and travel, with dogs, to places all around the world (when gas prices get lower).
Donate some $ to fund a new building at my school.

5) All the places I have lived:
St. Louis, MO (twice)
Evanston, IL
Chicago, IL
Boston, MA
Cambridge, MA
Oak Ridge, TN
Eugene, OR


6) Peeps I want to know more about:
Carol
Rachel
Bonnie
Rosy

Monday, May 12, 2008

Slowly but Surely


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Originally uploaded by kbshee
I'm on row what, 19, of the fair isle mitten...just about at the place where I can slip the thumb stitches on a holder for a while. The good news is that I think it looks ok...and also that I enjoy doing fair isle. The bad news is that I have no idea if it will actually 'work' or not (ie am I carrying the yarn loosely enough or will I have a wee straightjacket on my hand.

The other good news is that I'm definitely getting fair isle out of my system, and I have no desire to do an entire sweater or something that requires steeks. I may do an EZ fair isle just because it seems within my realm of skills and...no seams! But we'll see. Lots of fair isle rows left on this project.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Socks!


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Originally uploaded by kbshee
Well, I finally finished something...a pair of socks that has been in the works for a while. These are for Tim, and they're made with yarn from The Unique Sheep. Purchased from Woolgirl. The pattern was from "the little book of sock" and all in all I think they turned out fine. There's a bit of a slip stitched cable pattern in the sock which looks nice. Tim likes them..the yarn is a thicker weight than most sock yarns, which he loves.

I've been doing a round or two a day of fair isle...it is starting to look like something (but what, I'm not sure) but I do like fair isle. It isn't that scary, although it will be interesting once it is off the needles to see how it looks.

I also cast on a top from the Knitter's Book of Yarn, that was designed by Amie Gavin Glasgow, who is a visitor to this blog and one of those 'friends you've never met' in the knitting community. She created a pattern for a side to side sleeveless top in a striped pattern. Well, I ended up with some cotton yarn called Ty Dy which is pseudo self-striping so I'm making it with that. And it's a heavier yarn which has caused me to sort of rewrite the pattern to fit the yarn, but the basic concept is still there. It should look good. Pics soon.

Friday, May 09, 2008

Spring DeStash

I'm destashing. I'm actually planning to destash from now through the summer.

I used to feel guilty about destashing...I mean I BOUGHT the damn yarn, I liked it once, why don't I like it now? And I thought about it for a while...it isn't that I don't like it, I just like other things better. And there is no way I'm every going to knit 250 pairs of socks (number exaggerated, but maybe by not much). And I joined a couple sock clubs, and while I liked the yarn, I didn't love the yarn. So maybe someone else will.

So. I'm destashing. It's all posted at Ravelry:
here .


Below is a summary; if there's something you're interested and want more details and a photo, leave a comment or email me at kbshee AT comcast DOT net. And there's a 10% discount for my blog readers.

Sunshine yarns spread color The Colorway That Must Not Be Named Part of Sunshine Yarns Harry Potter Sock Club. $22 includes US shipping.
Austermann Step Red and black $13 includes US shipping
Blue Moon Fiber Arts Bambu Banded Agate Colorway "Two skeins already wound into cakes.

$20 per skein includes US shipping.

Brown Sheep Handpaint Originals Sunbaked $5 includes us shipping.
Brown Sheep Kaleidoscope Anaheim $10 includes US shipping.
Elann Peruvian Pure Alpaca Blue $7 for both includes US shipping
JaggerSpun Zephyr Wool-Silk 2/18 copper I have four balls. 2 have labels with same dye lot. 2 without labels but it looks the same to me. $10 per ball includes shipping. Take 2 for $18 (same dye lot) or all 4 for $32. All shipping US only.
Knit Picks Gloss Serengetti Two skeins. $4 includes shipping each, or $7 for both includes shipping.
Knit Picks Gloss Dusk Beautiful blue. $4 each includes shipping or both for $7 shipping US only.
Lana Grossa Meilenweit 100 Colortweed 1003 $15 includes US shipping
Lana Grossa Meilenweit 100 Fantasy 4710 $14 includes US shipping
Lana Grossa Meilenweit 100 Tweed 135 $15 includes US shipping
Mountain Colors 4/8's Wool Elderberry $17 includes US shipping
Mountain Colors Bearfoot Sunburst $18 includes postage in the US.
Mountain Colors Bearfoot Huckleberry $18 includes US shipping
Noro Silk Garden 205A Golds, greens, ambers. $10 includes shipping in US.
Patons Kroy Socks 4 Ply 54556 $8 for two includes US shipping
Rowan RYC Cashsoft DK
Schachenmayr nomotta Extra Tweed 13683 $12 includes US shipping for all 3.
Scheepjes Cotton 8 517 $9 for both includes US shipping
Seacoast Handpainted Panda Signs of Spring $19 includes US shipping
Shelridge Farm Soft Touch Ultra Green ripple $10 includes US shipping.
Trendsetter Yarns Dune Black and silver $17 for both includes US shipping.
Yarntini Semi-Solid Sock Merlot "Wound into cake. $25 includes US shipping.

"
Zitron Trekking (XXL) 133 $16 includes US shipping

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

I is for isle


i is for isle
Originally uploaded by kbshee
As in Fair Isle.

As I mentioned, I thought I'd try a not-too-difficult fair isle project and started on a pair of mittens from the Alice Starmore Fair Isle book. As you can see, I've done the cuff and about the first ten rows of the hand and already it just looks bizarre with the cuff being all poofy. Hopefully this will change as the mitten progresses, but I honestly am seeing this as a noble experiment to see if fair isle and I will really stay friends.

My guess: not so much.

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Do not adjust your monitor!


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Originally uploaded by kbshee
Here is the ribbon top I've been working on...it has sort of an asian inspired neckline which requires a separate top piece. I like how it looks...the effect of the ribbon yarn is very blurry, which is kind of fun, and I think it will also look good on.

That said, anyone have any hints for seaming this pup? I need to seam the shoulders, then knit the neckline and then attach ribbon to hold the little part on to the big part, then sew the seams. The other ribbon top I made required only shoulder seams. I don't know whether to use the ribbon yarn I have or just find some thin white yarn. Thoughts?

And while the original pattern had sleeves, I'm skipping because 1. they'd be a pain to set in and 2. I like sleeveless tops and 3. oh yeah, I didn't buy enough ribbon yarn for two sleeves. And I bought it from Elann.com, and they're out of it now. C'est la vie.

I have been jonesing to do some fair isle...why? why? I have no idea. But I have. And I"m scared to death to steek....please don't tell me it isn't a big deal, it is CUTTING into your GARMENT that you KNIT with your HANDS. Anyway. So I started on a pair of fair isle mittens. We'll see how that goes. Stay tuned.

Friday, May 02, 2008

Signs of Spring


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Originally uploaded by kbshee
The temps in Eugene are about 10 degrees below normal this spring, and now that May is here...

Hey Hey The First of May!
Outdoor kissing starts today!

So I'm a bit late. Sorry...

...now that May is here, it seems we might still have a bit of time left for spring.

I finished (almost) this top made out of Artful Yarns Fable...yet another in the long list of Yarns I Love but Are Now Discontinued. If you look closely, there's a little twist at the top of neckline which is very cute. I'll post another picture when I get it all seamed up.


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Originally uploaded by kbshee
Thank you for all your kind birthday wishes. Tim and I both played hooky on the day and we went over to the coast (Florence) with the dogs. We walked around and looked in the shops, had a delicious lunch, and then took a walk on the beach with the dogs. Cody had a terrific time playing fetch (as he always does) and Juneau gamely put her paws in the water and wondered what the fuss was. She is such a good sport, though, and we think we can get her to be a good beach dog, if not a fetcher.

I heard from friends and family, including these beautiful flowers from my Aunt Mary Jane. One of the best signs of spring on my birthday!