No time

Nothing can steal all of your free time like two part-time jobs and being a full time grad. Just recently I got a new part-time job that I have been putting in anywhere from 25 to I think maybe 35 hours on top of babysitting for a new (I switched families) family part-time. Needless to say there hasn’t been much spinning or knitting happening recently. Just recently have I started finding time to squeeze it in and I am seeing some progress being made (not as much progress as I am used to though).

So I figured until I had some time to talk about what’s on my needles or spindle and until I finish something I figured I would show you my newly organized stash.

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Scrap balls go here.

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Large amount of scrap go in the tubs (like when I have one or two skeins leftover from a sweater).

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My favorite yarn get’s hung on the wall as art.

IMG_5129 I used to love having my stash on display and seeing everything that I can look forward to working on, but just recently with how busy I am this is the first time in my life that my stash is actually stressing me out because I hardly have time to work on it.

Liebster Award Nominees

Well here are my 11 nominees for the Liebster Award:

1. Tracey Cox

2. Pixelknit’s Ponderings

3. Nearlythere

4. My Tangled Yarn Knitting Adventures

5. From the Purl Side

6. If and any

7. Klever Knits

8. Woolen Diversons

9. Weekend Knitter

10. Skeinny Dipping

11. Knitspiring Odyssey

These are my Questions:

1. Why did you start this blog?

2. What’s your favorite craft? Spinning, knitting, or yarn dying?

3. What is you favorite knitting, spinning, yarn dying, and/or general crafting book?

5. When did you start knitting, spinning, and/or yarn dying?

6. Why did you start crafting?

7. How long have you been crafting?

8. Favorite yarn brands?

9. What is your favorite type of project?

10. What’s your favorite knitting, spinning, and/or yarn dying magazine?

11. Favorite designers?

Please check out all of these blogs! I have been inspired and have learned various things from all of these blogs.

And to my nominees, thank you for blogging and sharing your love for your craft. I hope you all have the opportunity to participate in the award! I can’t wait to read your responses to my questions and to see who you nominate!

Patricia

Liebster Award

Hello to all of my wonderful followers! Just recently I was nominated for the Liebster Award by Mika, author of the blog The Novelty Knitter! I was honored and more than happy accept, I never imagined that my blog would be as popular as it is now and I only have you all who read the blog to thank for my success.

 

These are the rules to the Liebster Award:                                                 liebster-award

1. Answer questions from the blogger who nominated you.
2. Nominate 11 new blogs with 500 followers or less.
3. Post 11 new questions for your nominees to answer.
4. Tag your nominees and leave a comment on their blog letting them know they have been nominated.

Questions

1. Why did you start this blog?

I started this blog after my friends who were knitters graduated from college and moved away leaving me with no one to talk about knitting with. So I created this blog essentially as an outlet to talk about my knitting and whatever other crafts I was currently into so I wasn’t boring my friends and family who weren’t knitters.

2. What are your goals for your blog?

Honestly I never imagined anyone would ever read my blog or at least not read it regularly. I guess if I had to choose a goal it would be just that my blog would be inspiring, helpful, and encouraging to whoever choose to read it.

3. What are your sources of inspiration?

My sources of inspiration are vast. I am inspired by other knitters, crafters, spinners, nature, design, art, people, and well just the world around me.

5. What are your other hobbies besides blogging?

I have many hobbies. Of course I love to knit and spinning is also becoming a favorite of mine. I also like to sew, take photos, make jewelry, and do other crafts.

6. Why did you start crafting?

Honestly I have no clue why I started crafting, I have just been doing it as long as I can remember. I guess I craft because it makes me happy to create things.

7. How long have you been crafting?

I have been a serious crafter since 2009, but I have been doing crafts for as long as I can remember.

8. Favorite yarn brands?

Oh this question is a tough one. I would have to say that Northbound Knitting is one of my all time favorites. I also really love Madelinetosh. Those two are at the top then my other favorites are: Brooklyn Tweed, Quince & Co., Malabrigo, Manos Del Uruguay, Cascade, Dream in Color, and Luna Grey.

9. What is your favorite type of project?

My favorite project type would have to be either sweaters or shawls. I seem to make those the most.

10. Vogue Knitting or Interweave?

I’m definitely an Interweave person. I have actually never purchased a Vogue Knitting magazine.

11. Favorite designers?

This is another tough one to narrow down, but here it goes. I like Jane Richmond, Babycocktails, Lisa Mutch, Veera Välimäki, Shannon Cook, Alicia Plummer, Savory Knitting, Bristol Ivy, Amy Miller, Martina Behm, Hilary Smith Callis, Isabell Kraemer, Cecily Glowik MacDonald, Hannah Fettig, Dieuwke van Mulligen, Gudrun Johnston, Stephen West, Hiroko Fukatsu, Jared Flood, and Melissa Schaschwary. I know there are even more designers that I like, but these are the ones that I either have made quite a few projects from or am planning to make more of their designs in the near future.

*I will post the people I nominate and their questions in my next post.

 

Variegated Yarn

Variegated yarn is oh so pretty, but in my opinion oh so difficult to work with. It’s hard to work with because it is difficult to find a pattern that it would work for. Like I referenced earlier in the blog that highly variegated yarn is a hard medium to find the perfect canvas for. The reason it is so difficult is because you need a blank canvas so the yarn doesn’t distract from the pattern/project. Another thing that you need to think about is the fact that variegated yarn has a tendency to pool. I for one am not a fan of pooling.

The socks are a great example of pulling, but it works because it makes a spiral. The only thing I'm kind of concerned about is that I am afraid that the pattern is getting over shadowed by the pooling.

The socks are a great example of pooling, but it works because it makes a spiral. The only thing I’m kind of concerned about is that I am afraid that the pattern is getting over shadowed by the pooling, but I am moving forward with it because it is a sock so it won’t be seen as much as other projects.

For those reason I haven’t purchased a variegated yarn in about two or three years now. Now you may be wondering if I haven’t done it in that long and I have such strong reservations how is it I have finished to projects recently with variegated yarn and that is because when I purchased it I didn’t know that it was going to be variegated and so when it came to me I had to be creative and find projects that would do the yarn and the pattern justice. As you probably have seen if you read the blog posts about my Trillian and Deviate I have found a few perfect patterns for that work great with variegated yarns. Martina Behm (designer of the Trillian) has many other projects that would work for variegated yarn.

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Trillian

 

My deviate

My deviate

With all of this being said I have changed my stance on variegated yarn. No it won’t be my go to purchase, and no I won’t be going out and buying it all the time. But when I find a great variegated yarn I will probably get it, it will probably be an impulsive buy, but that is okay.

Deviate

Well I finished another shawl. Which is no surprise really because well I love shawls and I try to keep  at least one on the needles at all times. I don’t know what it is but they are just so much fun and their are so many great patterns out their.

This shawl is Deviate from Lisa Mutch/Northbound Knitting and well just as I expected it was so much fun to knit. I just adored the fact that there was a purely stockinette side and then a garter side. It was like getting the best of both worlds. On top of it all Deviate is another great shawl for a highly variegated yarn. I rarely work with variegated yarn, not because I don’t like it, but because it is, in my opinion a difficult medium to find the right canvas for (I will go into further detail in a later post).

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The yarn for this was actually dyed by Lisa/Northbound Knitting, it was a part of her cocktails KAL/SAL. The Trillian was too. This yarn just like the yarn for Trillian was amazing to work with. It is an Alpaca, Silk, Cashmere blend and it was heavenly to work with and well the colors together are to die for. Lisa has such a way with color, I am starting to get more and more of her yarn in different bases and each base is lovely in it’s own right (she also dyes fiber and I can’t wait to get my hands on some of that). So besides being a great designer she is a wonderful yarn dyer.

Okay so enough gushing, here are some more pictures.

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Pattern: Deviate

Project Page: here

Yarn: Northbound Knitting Alpaca/Silk/Cashmere

Colorway: More Gin Please

Mods: To use up more as much of this lovely yarn as possible after I completed the last section I repeated the other section until I used almost all of the yarn and then bound off.

Nachtfalter

Well a few weeks ago I finished my Nachtfalter (my submission for the Tops, Tanks, and Tees KAL), but with all of the spinning and knitting that I have been doing I am just getting around to posting about it now.

The Nachtfalter is a fun and addictive knit that looks way harder than it actually is, as long as you can read a pattern, knit and purl you should be fine.

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The butterfly lace section of the top was a lot of fun and was very easy to memorize. After the first lace repeat section was done I had the pattern memorized and I didn’t have to look at it until it came to the garter section.

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I lengthened everything about this top which I am very glad I did because I prefer my tops to be longer.

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Pattern: Nachtfalter

Project page: here

Yarn: Jilly by Dream in Color

Colorway: Poppy

Mods: I did the size small but followed the measurements for large on the baby cable ribbing and butterfly lace, medium for the sleeve holes, and small for the top garter section. I also used a fingering weight yarn, the pattern calls sport/dk, but I got gauge with the exact needles size called for.

I surprisingly only used 682 yards which I am kind of glad because I loved the yarn and color and now I have some left over yarn to use for stripes or something small.

The yarn is to die for, it is up there in my top three favorite single ply yarns. Northbound Knitting and Madelinetosh’s tosh merino light being the other two. Jilly is one of Dream in Color’s newest bases and it is amazing and has a ton of fabulous colors. I had a hard time picking what colors and I ended up buying two other colors  for other things.

 

 

DownEast

Well the never ending saga of me and the DownEast sweater finally came to a close today. It finally dried and the rain finally let up so I could take some pictures and blog about it.

As you have read or those of you who are new to the blog are lucky and haven’t had to read my endless complaining about this sweater. The complaining is now over. I think I have finally decided what ultimately is wrong with this sweater and it isn’t the pattern. It’s the yarn, I hate it. It wasn’t right for this project, as you can see in the pictures below the sweater is a little bit see-through and I have decided it is because the yarn wasn’t bulky enough.  Another strike against the yarn is the fact that I just didn’t enjoy working with it, though it is a wool blend it has acrylic in it and well I hate acrylic. I will admit that I am a yarn snob and well acrylic is not my cup of tea. I use it from time to time, but those projects are never for me and the person has generally hired me to make it so to keep it the item at a decent price I compromise and use cheap yarn.

*Disclaimer I am not saying that this yarn is horrible in anyway, I had no problems with the yarn its self. I just didn’t enjoy working with it and it was the right yarn for this project.

I think besides all of my mishaps stupid mistakes with this project ultimately not enjoying the yarn is why this project lingered on the needles so long.

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IMG_5108The pattern on the other hand is really well written and is beautiful. The sample of the pattern page is knit up on Swans Island (Out of my price range when I went to buy yarn, but is totally worth the money if you have it) and I figure that if I would have chose that yarn it would have turned out perfect and it wouldn’t even be see-through.

Pattern: DownEast

Designer: Alicia Plummer

Yarn: Berroco Vintage Chunky

Colorway: Tide Pool

Mods: none

Project page: here