Wednesday, 29 April 2015

Another Pair of Afterthought Heel Socks

I finished the heel of these socks yesterday on the GO train on the way home from HotDocs.
We took advantage of the same day free tickets for seniors and saw the behind the scenes documentary about the Monty Python performance - their first together in 35 years. In the afternoon, we watched "Listen to Me Marlon", a documentary recounting the life of Marlon Brando through his private audiotapes.

Back to the socks...

They started out as humble tube socks. They were very quick to knit.
I used the one sock as the template for the other.
On this pair, I continued the ribbing down the front/instep.
It took a bit of fiddling to get the toes just right.

 The heels took some adjusting as well.
I am somewhat of a yarn snob, but I admit I rather like this line of Kroy sock yarn. They wear like iron and the colourways are interesting and fun to knit.
I may give them to someone who is knitworthy that has narrow feet.

Monday, 27 April 2015


JennB and I attended the Knitter's Frolic on Saturday. While there, I met up with some of my knitterly friends: Mo, Donna, and Jennifer from Kingston. I also met Sivia Harding, who was there to teach some classes. I was admiring a lace shawl on a petite woman beside me. I asked her what the pattern was and by whom and she said something like, "it's Traveler, by Sivia Harding". Then she was about to introduce herself and I exclaimed, "OMG! YOU'RE Sivia Harding! I've knit"... and then I drew a blank on the name of her design I'd knit but I remembered the tune it's named after and when I hummed it for her, we both said, "Norwegian Woods".  I then told her I loved her patterns. I was starstruck. It turns out Traveler is a cowl and she was wearing the one pictured in her Ravelry photo.

At the indigodragonfly booth, this Striated shawl intrigued me. It is triangular and appears to be knit with decreases on one side down to a point. The decrease side end up being the hypotenuse.
The pattern is found in the current Knit.Purl magazine (p. 61)

so 'quick like a bunny' (as my mother used to say) I scampered over to Gemini Fibres and bought what I believe was their last copy. There are many other lovely shawls therein contained as well.
I ran into my intrepid knitterly/spinnerly BFF (best fibre friend), Mo, while I was perusing the used magazines that were for sale. The proceeds go to Relay for Life.

Mo was sporting her Maple Leaf shawl which she knit using her handspun. It is gorgeous.
I had to take a picture of her to show JennB, to prove that Mo indeed exists. They've heard about each other these past few years but I've never encountered them in the same place at the same time. To JennB I refer to Mo as my 'phantom' knitterly friend.
At the Needle Emporium, I admired this bias-knit multi-coloured scarf.
A similar pattern is the Auburn Wave scarf.
I have been perusing my stash and realize I already have the yarn to knit many of these lovelies.

This Castalia shawl is similar to some of the feather and fan knitting I've been doing lately.
At another booth, I admired these children's socks, particularly the little fish on the toes. They'd be easily duplicate-stitched.
I've had 4 skeins of Louet Euroflax yarn for several years. It hasn't been enough to do anything large but his pattern, Eliza, by Creative Yarns in Scarborough, ON, would be perfect for that yarn. Eliza is a very clever design which can be worn a couple of ways. This is displayed with the head going through one opening with one closed armhole and the other a draped opening. It can also be work with the head through the ribbed part on the left and an arm through the hole on the side.  Click here to see both ways.
I'm the kind of shopper that prefers to shop on my own, meeting up with my companion from time to time to compare notes. Here, JennB was admiring the gradient sets at PassionKnit. And yes, that lovely, beaded, lace shawl is one of her creations. She got many compliments both on the knitting and the beadwork.
At the Shelridge booth I admired the Cameo shawl. I have a hankering to do a striped, garter stitch shawl. I find the Frolic such a source of inspiration  - as I visualize items I could knit using the stash I already have.
Every time I attend the show, I admire this multi-coloured Serenade sweater. I almost purchased the kit but jumped back from the brink just in time. It is knit side to side and has set-in sleeves. I like the construction of the short-row collar and like how it lies nicely. Maybe someday...
At Linda's Craftique we admired this sweet baby cardigan, Entrechat. There is also an adult version available.
So what did I buy?  I bought a fingering weight gradient set from indigodragonfly. I purposely selected autumnal colours as I really only have one rust-coloured shawl that I wear in the fall and thought I needed another.
The Spearmint Tea Shawl pattern came with pink Koigu gradient set (pictured below) I purchased at PassionKnit.  However, I have started the Brush Creek shawl with the pink set. I've had a few starts, misreading the pattern, doing the wrong stitch, then realizing I hadn't started with the darkest colour. Now I believe I'm on the right track.
I first saw Brush Creek at Miss Babs' booth last year at Rhinebeck and purchased it on Ravelry when I got home. I'm pleased I've found a gradient set with which to knit it.

It also has given me ideas about doing some of my own dyeing for gradient sets. It would certainly be easy enough winding off 5 equal amounts of yarn and dyeing them from dark to light, diluting the dye each time. Yet another project for the summer, I guess.

The TurtlePurl booth had odd lots for sale. These totalled 74g and are certainly enough for me to knit myself a pair of stripey socks with, perhaps, some simple cable detail.
I also purchased the pattern for the Pendant Purls Shawl. I'm really into semicircular shawls lately and this one intrigued me. I'm not keen on how the sides are straight and am already planning how to re-jig the pattern with points on each side.
One of the coolest things I acquired was free! This Koigu bag was included with the purchase of the Koigu gradient set from PassionKnit. During the show, several people asked me where I got it.
This year's Frolic was a big success. I purchased some nifty hand-dyed items and creatively-designed patterns. I have several notes of ideas for busting some more of my stash.

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

The Gathering

(The last of 4 blog posts I did tonight)

Last Saturday, Mo, Donna and I ventured eastward to Port Hope to attend The Gathering. It is a BIG spinning event sponsored by the Northumberland Fibre Arts Guild and the Northumberland Hooks & Needles Guild and is held in the Town Park Recreation Centre. There, we met Terry, Alexa, and Jennifer.

There were many vendors around the periphery of the hall.

Pine Hollow Farm offered lots of yummy batts,
and rovings.
YvieKnits Yarns was there,
with several of Natalie Servant's shawls on display, Francine Hebert's lovely shawl pins,
and binders full of Natalie's patterns. That's Yvonne (Yvie).  (sorry about the bad photo quality)
Other vendors had lots for us to peruse and purchase.
Wellington Fibres is a regular vendor. We'll see them again at the Knitter's Frolic on April 25 in Toronto at the Japanese Cultural Centre. Be advised the DVP is closed that weekend so an alternative route to Wynford Drive will be necessary.
Thistle Dew Farm had a lovely display. They were Grand Champion Fleece winners at the 2012 Royal Agricultural Winter Fair.
This vendor had lots of fleeces, rovings, yarns, and felted items.
The Sock Diva specializes in hand cranked (made on a circular sock machine) socks made with Opal (TM) sock yarn.
A demo on the sock machine.
Photo - Pete Fisher, Northumberland Today
Dye-Version also had a booth. We'll also see them at the Frolic.
Our spinning friend, Jennifer, recently told Paula Lishman about this event so Paula got herself a booth to display her fur yarns and some knitted fur items.
Someone from the local newspaper got a show of part of the group.  I'm facing the camera on the right in the green shawl with my mouth open. (what else is new?). That's Terry to my left, and Jennifer to her left.
Photo - Pete Fisher, Northumberland Today
I worked on this Cormo roving I purchased at Rhinebeck several years ago.
I took a few pics of the rows of spinning wheels.
There were lots of Lendrums (the tilted ones), Louets and Ashford wheels.
Plus many others.
This year's event was the best-attended ever. I estimate there were over 250 people there. I saw almost every spinner I know there plus a couple of knitting acquaintances.
I accosted this woman who was sporting a beautiful Aran sweater, hoping she could tell me the name of the pattern.
In fact, she had purchased it at a mill on a trip to Ireland. I really like how the shaping was done with the ribbing. She was pleased to accommodate my request to take photos. I hope to deconstruct it and design my own sweater with the yarn I brought back from Ireland in 2013.
Fullin' Woolens was also there and we'll probably see them at the Frolic, too.
After all the draws we went for lunch at Basil's Market & Deli, then over to Laurie's at The Black Lamb. The we stopped in at Soper Creek Yarns in Bowmanville, then home.

It was a great way to spend the day.