Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Drama in Scotland

Do not read the following if you are blissfully unaware of the drama that is currently going on about Knit Camp in Scotland and want to stay that way. It's pretty infuriating. But when Lynda the Guppy IMed me with the details, I became enthralled and a little enraged. Here is the story, as I've been able to uncover, with what I'm hoping are chronological links.

  • Ysolda canceled her classes in June, citing a lack of agreement on the contract. For someone who seems to be very easy going and who expressed quite a bit of excitement, this seems troubling in retrospect.
  • Jessica AKA Mama Rav disassociated Ravelry from Knit Camp at the end of July, citing lack of contract and "the Ravelry name was unofficially used again this year," which must have made many attendees uneasy.
  • Lorilee arrived to teach her class on continental knitting, found there was no work visa for her, was documented, treated like a criminal and deported.
  • All non-European teachers arriving in Scotland discovered they also did not have work visas and had to leave the country. Most/all of them went to another country to await their work visas. This was the weekend, nothing could be done until Monday.
  • The website for the Knit Camp went down at some point during the catastrophe and did not come back up until early Tuesday, PDT.
  • There was and still is not as, of this writing, any official statement anywhere from the organizers explaining the situation, announcing the changes in schedules and substitutions, explaining how to get refunds. Nor were there emails sent out to attendees affected before this morning.
  • European teachers were also forgotten in the hubbub, at least one being stranded for two hours at an airport.
  • The organizer, Jo, has left a number of petulant, unprofessional responses over Ravelry -- including chastising Lorilee and calling her a liar. She attended a tea party and then a dinner rather than make a post and then declared she needed sleep before she could post. Meanwhile, many attendees were trying to determine if they should make the trek to attend the classes they paid for. 
  • Jo arranged to teach the class Jared Flood was going to teach on Tuesday. You know, because they are interchangeable. I don't know if this substitution actually took place.
  • There is also some side drama regarding the official knit camp sock pattern/kit that Lorilee designed.
Kristen Rengren AKA retroknit has posted a solution for Jo, which will help everyone including Jo. It would be a hard pill for her to swallow voluntarily, but as retroknit points out, she's going to have to swallow it no matter what. Her post also hints at more of the backstory that led up to this fiasco.

I hear that the people actually attending are having a wonderful time. I am very happy for that. I just feel sorry for all of the people who were adversely affected. Knitting events should always be anti-stress!

Good luck, Knit Campers. I hope all turns out the best it possibly can.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Tha Cardigan... she is finished...

...as am I...


Thursday, February 25, 2010

Will She Make It??

Hey Robin!
I won't bore you with the in-between shots but here's where I stand as of this morning!!

I dunno... think I can make it?
All that is left is to block the sleeves, sew it all together and knit the button-band! I'm going to get some buttons today hopefully!


Friday, February 19, 2010

I'm a Knitting Olympian!

Hey Robin,
Whether you call it Knitting Olympics or Ravelympics, my fingers have been hard at work on my event project. I chose to take this as a true challenge on an Olympic scale and see if I can knit a cabled-cardigan in less than 17 days. I am 6 days in and here's my progress so far:
I was so frustrated with the instructions/charts in the published form of the pattern, I had to make a new chart in excel, After the second day I didn't need it anymore but I am so glad I made it. I was able to visualize what I needed to do and that has made things much more smooth! You can see the chart behind the wool in pics 1 and 2. I am now maybe halfway through the other front piece and hoping to complete it by tonight and begin the sleeves. Think I can make it?
At this point it's a bit of a struggle as being monogamous with a project usually gets me to burnout-time rather quickly.... I'm willing to push myself to see what happens. That's what the Olympics are all about, right?


Monday, February 15, 2010

Wonderful Things happen...

Hey Robin,
I had happened-upon a wonderful knitted-toy pattern, and since I was in the "find easy patterns for my Knitting Club Girls (a.k.a. Knitlets)" mindset I downloaded it right away with the intent to share.

I have been bitten by the bunny nugget bug
Apparently these guys like chocolate chip cookies, I think I better do something about that...

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Friday, January 29, 2010

Knitter in Progress...

Hey Robin,
As much as I have been trying to avoid adding yet another fiber-centered obsession to my repertoire, I have found myself bitten by the spinning bug.

After my first attempt at learning-by-ditto-paper-instructions was a bust, I was given a few pointers by friends who spin a LOT and then you pointed me in the direction of Megan LaCore and I was re-intrigued by the prospect of creating my own knit-fodder.... I purchased some wool from a Falkland sheep (not directly, sheep can't use the internet... I think the screen gives them a headache) and started prepping/drafting the fiber per Megan's instructions.

Here's what I have so far with just a little fiber left to add to the spindle:
Sorry I had to use a flash, the light has not been awesome around here lately... the colors are much richer and for the record, this is a lot of yarn. I think it might be too much to have on the spindle all at once, but there's so little left to add that it seems silly to start a new batch! 

...though now I have to buy a new spindle because... shoot... it looks so nice sitting there on this one, how could I remove it? (Frankly I am scared to do it. I have no idea how to get it off there without it becoming a hot mess... any pointers? Anyone? ...Beuller?)
I'm just so proud of myself!

Later ;)

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

So. Much. Work.

Super Mario Sweater Vest.  I am overwhelmed by the work that went into that wonderfully geeky vest.

[via Wonderland]

Monday, January 4, 2010

Catching up (again)

Hey Robin!
With the passing of the holidays, I finally find myself able to get some pictures taken and organized. Whee! A lot got completed in the mad scramble to clear off some needles before the New Year, what a relief that is. The ability to start new projects that don't really have a deadline is somewhat foreign lately...

Here we go. First up, I finished pair #2 of Through the Garden Gate. I like them in variegated!

Pattern: My own: Through the Garden Gate
Yarn: Blue Moon Fiber Arts, Socks that Rock Heavyweight in Loch Ness colorway.

Next is a hat request from the Darling Hubster. I used the Point-Down Toque pattern which really just turns out to be a rough guideline. It worked fine for my purposes and Hub is really happy with it. He especially likes the tassle I think. The yarn was a gift from him (bless him), and I don't think he meant to give me yarn so I would make him a hat... but it's a great color and I definitely think it belongs as this hat.

Project: Scat (yes, I know what that means but it's a hat/scarf!)
Yarn: Patton's Classic Wool in... blue.

Next is one of the items I gifted which I didn't want to show before just in case. This was a gift for my Dad's best friend. She's really a special person and I wanted to make her something to keep her neck and hands warm when she rides her bike to work on a chilly morning. Here's a pic of her wearing the cowl, it looks so great on her!

Pattern: Melony Cowl
Yarn: Malabrigo Merino Worsted, Rich Chocolate colorway

Lastly, here's a design I've been working on and I would like to 'sneak peek' it to you all today in hopes of gauging some interest in a written pattern. I saw a commercially produced hood like this somewhere and started working on designing one in my head. Finally got some pretty chunky-weight yarn and gave it a go. Alterations will be necessary, but mostly the finished product will look like this:

I love the gentle cabling and the way it covers my head. I also like that there's no seaming! I know, seaming is NOT hard, but any chance to avoid it is a good thing in my book. I am looking for a good name for it as well, any ideas?

That's all I got today, Later!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Last Minute Finishes...

Hey Robin!
Just wrapping up (literally) a few new FO's that I managed to squeek-out and I wanted to show off a bit.
First a pair of slipper style socks for my Uncle's wife Rita. I am hoping she gets a lot of use out of them, they are so cozy! I had to guess at foot length, mostly my guess was "smaller than MY feet"... which only eliminates most basketball players and clowns... so in the picture here I am hiding the fact that the heel is creeping up my sole

Project: Thuja Socks by Bobby Zeigler. 
Yarn: Moda Dea Superwash worsted in a candy-corn orange color... 
yeah she won't be losing these anytime soon.

Next up, this one took a lot longer but it's a labor of love. Actually I want to make several more of these because the pattern is so well written even as such a simple thing and it's SO COZY. Apologies for the awful blocking-net picture (yes, something bled on this ages ago, but the dye doesn't seem to be going anywhere) but this NEEDED to be blocked for a pic and it's going to be resting there for a while. There's no hiding this one from it's recipient. The pattern calls for a hood, but in this case that would be a waste of yarn... i like the collar!

Pattern: Wonderful Wallaby 
Yarn: Malabrigo Worsted in Ravelry Red Child's size 6

On my Birthday I finished a Father-Son set. This one was a last-second addition to my Queue as the pattern was just released on Ravelry not more than a week ago! It was too enticing not to make a pair!

Pattern: Incognito by Mercedes Tarasovich-Clark 
Yarn: Moda Dea superwash in yellows and oranges

And THEN, because I can't leave well-enough-alone, I made one of my Shiny iPod socks for DSs Xmas gift (no, not an iPod but an MP3 player). Here is the awful picture of it, the flash-version was worse... the colors are a deep pewter grey, creamy-white and deep red. I like the combo! I altered my design (aside from changing dimensions) to create a flip-top for better security and I have decided to add a cord so he can hang it around his neck. I still love this pattern. I love that it is seamless (though I did have to tack-down the flip top, still it wasn't a pain in the neck or anything) and a fast-knit.

Pattern: Kate's Shiny iPod Sock
Yarn: Knit Picks Telemark in three colors

I know it's ok to post these items here because the giftees don't read this blog, but I have more to share and I cannot because I am not sure about THOSE giftees... they might be a sneaky bunch. So after the 25th I will try to pop back here and add pics of the rest of the stockpile of knitted pressies :)

Can I tell you about my day on the 20th? I want to thank everyone for the well-wishes and Happy Birthdays... it was a VERY pleasant and care-free day. I loved it. My boys let me sleep in a bit and made me my favorite breakfast. Then I got some brief knitting time before heading out for a Matinee of Princess and the Frog. I loved it. Such a cute story and a good re-telling, as always, by the peeps at Disney. Back home again, more knitting, and then off to a favorite restaurant for dinner. Benihana! I swear I want to install one of those hibachi in my house, I could eat like that every night! And aside from the terrible jokes, I think I could cook like that every night too! DS ate EVERYTHING put in front of him (yes, even the onions!) which is a rare and Mommy-pleasing thing. Happy Birthday to me :)

I hope your upcoming birthday is as wonderful and relaxing! I wish all of that and more for you dear friend!


Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

Hey Robin,
In the spirit of giving thanks for all that I am and all that I have, I am releasing another free pattern! Yay!

I give you: Through the Garden Gate

Yarn: Sundara Sport Merino in Tomato Soup colorway (1 skein!),
needles: US size 1

This one is top down style, with a gusset (with built-in decreases!) Made with sport weight yarn for a fast knit, and using the Trellis and Gate pattern from my stitch-a-day calendar, this pair of socks has been a true labor of love. I hope others will enjoy making them too! Get the .pdf here.

Thank you readers for your kindness in visiting our blog! Happy Thanksgiving to all!!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

What to do, what to do?

Hey Robin,
I find myself in a peculiar position... balanced on that thin line that we find ourselves on in this particular season. I finished a holiday gift (#18 or so in the list), so do I start another and face gift-burnout or do I start a little something for myself? Hmmm... to demonstrate:

I recently finished these for my Uncle Of the Large Feet (who's birthday is on Halloween but who I only just this weekend got to visit):

Pattern: Adult Moc-a-soc by Bekah Knits

Also finished this for a swap package, now received so it's OK to post a pic:

Pattern: Grid from Hello Yarn, colorwork pattern by my. 
Yarns used: Patons classic wool in natural and 
Debbie Mumm stuff from JoAnn. I'm too lazy to go find the ball band... sorry.

She is a fan of Moose. So the upper one shows the moose-print which is back-of-hand and the lower one shows the moose/antler motif I came up with for the palm. It was fun dreaming up this mitten, plus she really seems to like them so: score!

And now I have 50% finished this gift for another swap:

It's hard to see the leaf motif on the thumb gusset, no? Click to enlarge as always. This pattern is lovely and so well written. It's the October Leaves Mitts  by Abbie Tilden (yarn used: Malabrigo sock in Tiziano Red... I love this yarn base AND colorway... must get more). Mitt #2 is coming along quickly.

I did manage to make something that might or might not end up being for me, so perhaps I should not whine too much. I happened to catch that Woolly Wormhead was conducting a KAL (knit along) for some of her new hats and I have always wanted to make one of her projects. It ended yesterday thusly:


Pattern: KAL 'A' (name unknown just now) using Debbie Bliss Merino DK. See the purdy leaves??

Oh yes! I almost forgot that I also knitted up two hats for charity:

Both are the Warwick Hat by my dear friend Nina Machlin Dayton. Knitted up using Cascade 220 for both. They are extraordinary hats really. I think they might be my new faves as far as fun-to-knit factor and cuteness... both of them are child-sized but the pattern includes sizing all the way up to Adult Large.

So now.... what to do with all those lonely needles?

If anyone else has not suffered burnout from gift-knitting, Might I suggest the quickly-knit and wonderfully cute Baby Robitaille by a designer who's name currently escapes me?

Cute, no?