Tuesday, June 29, 2010

I really have to finish up my sideways knit dread slouch. That is all.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

{love in a box}

198 Yards of Heaven
I love it when my mail carrier rings my doorbell! He has yet to disappoint me :) Today he handed me a box postmarked from Germany, and it was filled with goodies!

My favorite group of knittin' folks online can be found at the "Got Friends" group on Ravelry. This spring we had a secret friend swap where we were given a fellow yarnie to gift some goodness to. Long story short, the person chosen to send something to me flaked so, ninjas were dispatched to come to my rescue. My ninja happens to be located in Germany so I wound up getting a box of things I wouldn't normally see around the states!

The goods -
.a finished 198 Yards of Heaven shawl in Knit Picks Imagination Hand Painted Yarn
.anti-slip stickies in the shape of paw prints for the bottom of socks! LOL
.Riesen Karamell candies
.a chocolate bar I had to toss in the freezer immediately! It's hot here :)
.two socks worth skein of Pro Lana Sockenwolle self striping yarn in blues/white/black
.2 skeins Zettl Treviso Sockenwolle in a gorgeous deep blue
.one yummy smelling hand made soap
.a small incense tray and sticks.
.lots of lurve :)

...it should be noted that my ninja was so badass, she originally sent me a Zippo but, customs caught it and sent the package back to her :( So, yes, that makes me hate terrorists even more.

Anyway, my very big thanks goes to my fellow knitter across the globe. You rock! xoxo

Molly modeling 198 Yards of Heaven

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

progress goes both ways

My Crow Prints is coming along beautifully, and I should be wearing it this time next week. About 10 rows of the final pattern repeat, and the border rows to go, till squishy cast off :)

In the other direction, I think I am a ready to frog my Tea Leaves in favor of using different (aka better) yarn. As much as I love the color of the Wool-ease "blue heather", the 80/20 acrylic/wool blend does not come close to the yumminess I need in this WIP. This conclusion was reached after dropping 3 stitches in a row, after pulling out a few rows to correct an error I had made. When I had tried to *unsuccessfully* pick them up for almost a half hour, I set it down thinking a friend could help me. Help she did! And she never touches acrylic (or "ickrylic", as she calls is LOL) So... my knitting nurse ripped back a few more rows, picked up the dropped stitches, and knitted back to where I had been before the ripping. Quite a feat for a self proclaimed Yarn Snob :) In the process of all this I've decided my first cardigan should spoil me, even before I can wear it... and the wool-ease will be turned into my beautiful goddaughter's first child's baby blanket (with some Spud and Chloe mixed in!)

Thursday, June 17, 2010


Yes, I wash my dreads - often, even.
Yes, Gossimer watches over me.
They're not for everybody but, I effin love my dreads!
...just sayin'

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

How is a Crow Print like a Storm Cloud?

About time last year, I was working on my first shawl ever. Being a newish knitter, The Storm Cloud Shawlette was just the right "non-intimidating" shawl I needed to bolster my knit confidence. A bunch of knit stitches and yarn overs, it grows quickly.

It had the size I wanted but, the ruffled edge didn't come out like I had hoped. Not "ruffly" enough. Maybe it had to do with the fact that the bind off I did wasn't squishy enough? Eh, no biggie, I wore it anyway, until I undid the bind off a few weeks later and tried it again. That was an even bigger fiasco, and it was set aside till 2 nights ago.

my "Peppermint Shawlette" circa 7/09
Two nights ago, my Storm Cloud aka Peppermint Shawlette, went from that to a cake of yarn once more.

Like I said in my last post (I think it was) I'm working on the Tea Leaves cardigan - it has a crazy amount of stockinette - and that's to be expected with a cardigan, of course. But I can't take anymore right now! I love shawls but so many of the have a huge triangle of knit one row/purl the next, and the thought of having an alternate WIP with the same stockinette stitching going on, makes my head hurt.

I must have looked at 300 shawl patterns before I settled on Crow Prints. Pattern stitches on the *right side*, purl on the other, and only a total of fifteen stitches of knit on the cast on edge. Score!

Affectionately named "Badb is such a girly-girl" ...
for it's pink girlishness coupled with it's carrion crowness
The crow is by far my favorite bird, and pink, well, let's just say we know each other well. Last night I burned thru the first of three 26 row pattern repeats. I'm a pretty good chart reader, and prefer them most of the time. This one did throw me for a little bit of a loop when I started my second round of pattern repeat tonight but, I think I am figuring it out ok. At least I seem to have the right amout of stitches to work with so, I must be doing something right!

Brooke Campbell's Crow Prints Shawl at her Silverrose Knitting blog is a free pattern! (and it's gorgeous!!!)
The yarn I'm using is Fannie's Fingering Weight in "watermelon" from Connecticut Yarn Company. It's a delicious, soft and squishy yarn. And I should add that CT Yarn Co has wonderful customer service, too!

Now, go knit something! xoxo

Friday, June 11, 2010

wild Friday night

TGIF, and all that stuff. It's Friday night, hubby is doing CQ over night, and Bird is fast asleep in her bed. That leaves me with the time to do whatever I want to tonight. Or so I thought... if if weren't for this headache, I'd be knitting lace. Yes, because I like to, silly! :) In place of actual knitting, I'll share a bit of what I've got going on my needles.

A Tea Leaves cardigan. Designed by Melissa LaBarre for Madeline Tosh, this is a simple but striking knit. I use the word "simple" because the pattern doesn't consist of cables or lace, it's a straight forward project that uses garter and stockinette with a little decrease here, and increase there to make it subtle and gorgeous.

Melissa LaBarre's Tea Leaves

A fine yoke, have I.

I have a way to go but, I'm making good progress. After looking at enough yarn to make my eyes hurt, I finally decided to go with Lion Brand Yarn's Wool-ease in "Blue Heather". The color is fabulous, and the price didn't hurt much either... bonus!

Another project in progress ... and one that I really need to pick back up is my dread slouch. Ziggy, a sideways knit slouch cap by Woolly Wormhead. I have about 5 panels done, of the 9 needed to make a "large".

Ziggy ... a great way to knit a hat!

That about does it for my rundown for tonight. I've got some cool water and ibuprofen waiting for me. Have a great weekend, and I hope you enjoy your WWKIP day!

Monday, May 31, 2010

the dread pirate J

Having dreads isn't non-maintenance like many think it is. I wash my hair a few times a week and maintain my locs on a daily basis by palm rolling, light pulling on each dread, applying aloe and one or another home made scalp/dread freshener to perk 'em up. Basically, clean dreadlocks are happy dreadlocks.

Sometimes, though, the scalp can become unhappy. My theory is that scalp unhappiness occurs because with dreadlocks, you can't brush thru and stimulate blood flow under the skin like you can more easily with un-dreaded hair styles. Well, that along with things that can dry the scalp out, and you can be one uncomfortable dread head. By trial, error, and advice from others with dreads, I have a new "no poo shampoo" recipe!

Jamie's dreadlock wash recipe

1 liter (1000ml) bottled or filtered water
4 TBSP sodium bicarbonate (baking soda)
1 TBSP Dr. Bronner's liquid soap, peppermint
juice from 1/2 fresh lemon

Mix ingredients together. Divide recipe into a few small containers and store portions that won't be used right away in the refrigerator. Shake very well prior to use! Apply to entire scalp area and massage well. Rinse after a minute or 2 with cool to cold water - always do final rinse with cold water! Cold water closes the cuticle and leads to less frizzy and much happier dreads ... as well as pleases even the most upset scalp!

Another recipe I use is for a daily spray. I use it to wake up my dreads in the morning or refresh them midday, or when ever.

Jamie's daily dread tonic recipe

3&1/2 ounces fresh water
9 drops peppermint essential oil
2 TSP vegetable glycerine OR
1 TSP jojoba oil

Mix ingredients together in a glass 4 ounces spray bottle. Shake well before use. Spray onto dreads and more directly on scalp as desired, for good smelling and more touchable dreadlocks.

It's really hard for me to resist referencing Jack Sparrow when talking dreads so, why try? :)

Sunday, May 30, 2010

round up

Not much happening this gorgeous, but hot, May morning. Just relaxing in the air conditioned tv room with Bird, watching The World of Beatrix Potter & Friends on dvd. I'm taking a break from trying to figure out what went wonky with the lace pattern I am using on a traveling scarf. It looks fine ... until I start the new pattern repeat row ... that's when it starts to look like something went amiss. Hmm...whatever the wonk is, I'll figure it out today...eventually*.

Catching up on getting some recent photos I've taken off of my phone, and on to my laptop, it's time for a little photo run down ...

Trying to tame my dreads a bit on a warm day
My Ishbel. Blocked, beautiful, and making itself a lovely shade covering :)
Miss Babs lace weight was used for the main stockinette and beginning of lace pattern section, and Mini Mochi combined because I was running short! It turned out fabulous!
A growing project with Bird. Wild flowers, butterfly bush, and delphinium are sprouting up in the window sill. Outside (and not pictured here) are more wild flowers, and a recently transplanted Lemon Queen Sunflower. They are doing good as well! I'll share pics as soon as it's more comfy outside for hanging out and taking photos.
That's it for this photo round up. Hopefully I'll figure out my lace issue and post pics of it's gorgeousness soon!

*Yep! Figured it out! It seems that when you toss in a K2TOG that isn't part of the repeat, but only the first stitch on the row, things go awry. Who knew?! ;)