Rubber bands… they convert 7″ double points to straights and gather the fabric to keep 117 stitches worth of Kimono Shawl in progress from falling off the technically too-short needles.

Kimono Shawl WIP

If I break one, no problem. They come free with takeout menus that I find hanging on the building doorknob a few times a week, which means I have an endless supply. And I’m always surprised to find knitters out there who don’t know this trick.

Blooming bougainvillea courtesy of a neighboring building.

Nearly 3 years ago, I made a little sweater for my co-worker’s baby daughter.  Of all the hundreds of things I’ve made over the years, this one’s at the top of my personal list of favorites. Love the design, love how the colors work. Here’s a little photo to refresh your memory:

2011_12_18_BabyFairIsle_b_front

Today, my co-worker commented that she saw the sweater at a friend’s house a few days ago and wondered that her daughter was ever so small, especially because it was too big when I gave it. I said, “oh, it’s still around!?” And she said it’s on its way to its fourth or fifth wearer, with three more kids lined up (I guess the sets of parents are lined up) to inherit it afterward. Now that’s one heck of a compliment for this knitter! I’m pleased that it’s so appreciated!

Watermelon… ick. While it’s a staple at many Independence Day picnics, I don’t like the taste, I don’t like the smell, and if it’s been anywhere near a fruit salad, I have to pass the salad by. Visually, though, it’s quite a handsome fruit, so I have no objection whatsoever to having these on my person:

Socks-2014-04-12-Watermelon_Knitters-Brewing-Company

Pattern: Watermelon Slice Socks by Wendy Gaal
Yarn: Knitter’s Brewing Company Sock-aholic in color 175: Watermelon Fizz, no dye lot; beads plus wee white and green skeins came with the kit
Needles: US size 1.5 for cuff and heel, size 1 for foot
Size: women’s 9.5
Started 3/6 and finished 4/12/2o14

As posted a few months ago, I used two dice to determine random seed (bead) placement. I rolled them and how the two numbers landed side by side indicated how many stitches between seeds. A 2-4 means 24 stitches, a 4-2 meant 42. Every once in a while, I would take artistic license if seeds were lining up too closely together and space them further apart. So, not totally random, but random enough.

A boy about 6 years old on a bicycle stopped while I had these lined up on the park bench, wanting to know “What are you doing?” His tone was priceless and I wish I could convey it here. Me, responding with my usual creativity, “taking a picture of my socks.” Him: “They look like a melon.” Me: “yes, they’re supposed to.” And then his dad hustled him way from the weirdo who carried her socks to the park. A photo shoot, though… be still my heart. This year has been quite unusual, weather-wise, sunny sunny sunny, but July has arrived and with it the summer fog, which means I was finally able to take photos of finished items today. Drat the sun, washing everything out for months on end.

2014-07-04-dahlias-GGPark-1

Dahlias filling in as fireworks…

Happy 4th, all! I have no desire to join the teeming hordes at the waterfront to look at the official fireworks; crowds are not my thing. Tonight it wouldn’t make any sense as it is: at most, the spectators are going to see the fog glow with Technicolor brilliance. I drove 4 hours south last weekend [visited mom, and her sweater fits!! so all I have to do is weave in ends now] and observed out the window that the state is one big brush fire waiting to happen, so I hope folks in general tonight have the good sense to put down the matches and walk away.

Feeling disgusted after an abysmal day shopping last weekend, on which I tried and failed to find new casual pants that are not skinny leg or quasi-yoga wear thank-you-very-much, I went to the thrift store this morning to root through non-modern pants, and spied across the room what looked like Kureyon sock yarn. Abandoning all thought of bottoms, I rushed for the sweater rack and found that a knitter’s pile of handmade pullovers somehow ended up hanging between nylon monstrosities in the thrift store. I rooted through those racks and here’s the haul, for a thrifty $24:

2014-05-31-thrifted-sweaters

They are all fine yarn sweaters in stockinette stitch with seed stitch cuffs and bottom edges, drop shoulders with cropped sleeves, and a wide neckline edged in single crochet, obviously made using the same pattern. They are lovely, but too wide and too short for me so I am going to unravel and re-use the yarn for other projects, so the first step is identifying the yarn. The top two feel like Kureyon Sock, the red and the tan ones feel like Koigu KPPPM, and I don’t know about the other two but the bright aqua mix feels like it has a bit of elastic in it and the gray-navy is soft and a little fuzzy, Madelinetosh something or other, maybe. I don’t need more yarn (really and truly), but I also couldn’t bear to leave them there for the shoddy shredder, where I’m sure they’re going to end up if they don’t sell because they don’t have a brand or size label in them.

I haven’t finished anything in weeks. I lost my knitting mojo before my vacation, had no time to knit during vacation, and sprained my right ring finger on the first day of my vacation so it didn’t matter that I had no time. Back home, I’m keeping the finger mostly splinted for a few weeks, but for a knitter and spinner that makes for a dull life so I started knitting this week a little, carefully, and only in short spurts on a scarf.

Scarf

This is Endless Rainbow by Martina Behm. I’m calling mine Limited Rainbow.

Glove in progress sees Roman ruins

In Bliesbruck-Reinheim. This was all the airplane knitting I did on the flight to Germany, with some unraveling and re-knitting here and there during the trip. I am generally way too busy visiting people to get much knitting time, plus I slightly sprained a finger somehow on day 1, slowing knitting progress on this project.

Mmm... Yarn

Some goodies from the Tausendschön shop in Saarbrücken. I bought 5 of the skein on the right.

Mmm... Ice cream

One thing I love about Germany is the availability of tasty sundaes!

Castle ruins in Manderscheid

No yarn anywhere to be found here!

Felting class day 2, photo 2

The finished felted piece is a book cover. The circles and lines blurred with all the rubbing I did to felt them down, but I like how it looks. Proper photos to come after I arrive back home.

Felting class day 2, photo 1

On day 2, we laid out a new Muppet pelt and added on top of that pieces cut from the previous day’s already-felted square as decorative elements. I added some loose fibers to make lines and circles. This is the piece ready for felting.

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