Category: Blog

My Kind of Harvest

This years tree fruit crop was kind of a bust.

Cold, wet spring weather didn’t help with getting things pollinated, so we’re a little light on the cherries, peaches, pears and such. Apples are coming along, but won’t be ripe until probably sometime in October.

But look what I found ready for the picking out in the orchard today:

Appletree Wool Worm

There was Ulla, up a tree, makin’ like she’s an Appletree Wool Worm or someting.

Ulla looked so happy up there that Tilly-in-progress decided she needed a piece of the action as well:

Tilly in a Tree

Made quite a bit of progress on the Tilly scarf this week, on account of me now being a bus-knitter.

Yes, indeed. I am switching commute modes. I learned the basics of the routes involved in getting me to and fro, bought myself a pass and I’m on my way.

Things have gone pretty smoothly so far. I’m saving gas, wear and tear on the vehicle, and I figure it buys me about and extra half-hour or more of knitting a day.

Win-Win, eh?

Book Love

I have a new book. And it is wonderful.

A Fine Fleece, by Lisa Lloyd

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If you’re into wool, spinning, knitting, etc. I highly recommend it.

Lots of good wool-talk, beautiful photos, and really great patterns. Plus, all the garments are shown in handspun and commercial yarn versions. Neat, eh?

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I don’t often buy knitting books because, more often than not, they have maybe one pattern in them that I would actually knit and wear. Usually doesn’t seem worth the price of admission.

But Lisa Lloyd and I are on the same page. Lots of texture, classic shapes, natural wool shades. Of course, I would probably do an EZ conversion on most of her saddle shouldered garments (seems so silly to do all that sewing when you don’t have to).

But other than that, it’s the book I wish I’d written.

So, even though I still have the argyle socks in progress (and it is a little slow-going)
Argyle in progress

the book has inspired me to cast on a little something handspun and cabled:

Beginnings of Tilly 09-01-08

That is “Tilly” taking shape in a soft-spun single of Gershom, my Shetland ram friend from Ferndale. I think he’d be pleased.

Arrrgggg yle!

I realize now that I forgot to tell you about a recent yarn acquisition.

It just so happened that a very kind and thoughtful person I know took a trip to Scandinavia recently. And she brought me back the best kind of souvenir: wool! Honest to goodness Norwegian wool. From Norway.

Neat, eh?

And the wool has spoken to me. It says it wants to be socks.

But not just any ole kind of socks. It wants to be argyle. (Wool after my own heart!)

So here we go-

Here’s the lineup: two shades of green are the norwegian, white for the crisscrossing lines is from the stash. Pattern is ancient, gift of a friend, from the cast-offs of an elderly neighbor (2nd from the right, just not so much ribbing).

argyle overview cropped

I’ve never done argyle socks before. I have done a sweater vest, but socks present a whole new kind of challenge. I played around with the idea of doing the argyle with a very clever, short-row construction techinique but finally decided that I needed to learn how to do it the old-fashioned way. Flat. Seamed. Like so:

argyle pattern-cropped

That upside-down T shaped chart is for the cuff and instep. You knit it flat and then wrap the two sides of the cuff around and knit the heel down from there. Then you pick up stitches on the sides of the heel and knit the side gussets- but get this: the gussets aren’t attached to the instep yet. Only once you get past the patterned section do you knit around down to the toe. The poor gussets just out there flapping the breeze, until you’re all done and you go back and sew them up! (And the back of the cuff, too.)

Yes, really. I do generally try to avoid seams in my knitting.

I’m making a big exception for these socks. So lets hope they’re worth it.

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Pretty, eh?

I do so love argyle.

A camera of my very own!

A Camara of My Own

I’m now photo-independent. Which means I have a lot to learn if I’m going to take blog-worthy shots.

I am also now between projects, with the Urban Aran off the needles. I’ve done a couple hats already, and am itching to start another larger project. But that means planning, and I haven’t had enough attention span lately to sit down and really get clarity on what I want to do.

I could go in a couple different directions-

Something tutti-fruiti from deep in the stash

Fruit Cocktail

or, perhaps a nice heathery taupe-y shetland paired with deep dark chocolate romney:

Warm Shades of 3 ply

Romney ram lamb 3 ply close

Bethany Shetland 3 ply close

With Fall seemingly on the way, I’m leaning towards the latter.

But then, it might not be a bad idea to have a couple projects in the works- If i could stagger their completion, I might never suffer Nothing On The Needles Anxiety again.