Saturday, March 20, 2010


Happy Spring!

This photo was taken from beside our front steps this morning! Also, as of yesterday, the last pile of snow is gone!

I have been slowly working on the lace sections of my Ishbel. Can you see from the photo what row I'm on?

That is correct, Row 2. Yes, when I said I'm working on it slowly I truly meant it!

I hope to get another row done this weekend. I already have a life line in place. Now the question is how frequently do I place these life lines...the way my Ishbel knitting has gone I feel like it should be every other row!!

Well, off to soak up some of this wonderful sun! The doors and windows are open as well as the study books.

Enjoy your Spring Day!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

A Tale of 3 Ishbels, Part 3

Let us try this again...

CO 3 stitches. So far, so good!

Pick up stitches. Hmm, I do not remember it being this tight. Maybe it is just the new needles. I mean it has been months since I last CO for this....maybe it was this tight previously.

Bring on the triangle! Boy do I love these needles! The yarn and my fingers are flying!!

But wait...when I hold up the piece something does not look right. I look at the pattern and realize I messed up ON THE FIRST ROW!! Well technically on the first 3 rows. STINKER!

What comes next is a breakdown of being totally stressed out, feeling like I can not do this...I mean if 5,881 people can do this on Ravelry clearly I'm the only idiot who can't figure this out.

Breathe. Breathe again. Put away the needles and regroup with it window shopping we go.

I did come back in a much better mood. I decide that I'm going to cut this piece off of the yarn cake. I'm going to frame it because I am not a quitter! 
Did you think I was kidding about the frame? I'm not pleased with how it lays in the frame, so I may take it out and block it! Yes - I'm going to block it so it looks better in the frame! Call me what you will! :-)

This frame now resides on my desk at home. It is a reminder that I'm going to persevere.

CO to Ishbel try #3....
(still irked that blogger rotates my photos!)

To answer your questions:
Yes I CO the correct amount of stitches.
Yes the next 3 rows I did correctly.
I plan on putting in a Life Line on the last row of stockinette stitch.
Yes I am counting every single row.
No I am not knitting the nights I'm stressed from work.
No this isn't my travel project (see Chevron scarf!).

Let us hope this is the Ishbel that will be finished and worn with pride! As my DH likes to say "All in due time!"

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

A Tale of 3 Ishbels, Part 2

Well let me tell you something, the stitch count was STILL off the next morning. Reality sets in. I must do the dreaded FROGGING! OK, I do can this...just keep breathing.

If I pull really gently I only have to frog the row 5 and start it over again. No problem. It is a win-win! I do not have to knit it all over again yet still get to correct the problem. So, I start ripping just a couple of stitches at a time....getting closer to the end....g-o-i-n-g  s-l-o-w-l-y....OH NO it took some from the next row.

Okay, I'll just rip it back to the stockinette stitches. I'm only losing a total of 5 rows. Breathe. I mean come on 5 rows, big deal!

Pulling slowly, I announce "Do not talk to me until I'm done this!". The room is empty. DH was a smart man and had left the room a long time ago.

OK I can't do this. I can not figure out how to pick up the right stitches as after you pull them apart they get wonky. Yes, wonky.

DH yells from other end of house, "take a breather". So, I head online to Ravelry. It gives me two words that I had failed to read previously:
Life Lines

What are those?! Oh, scrap yarn you knit into your row(s) that help if you need to frog back. Someone mentions that the Knit Pick needles work well for these, due to the holes in the circular sets.

WELL that doesn't help me now. Yarn and needles go into knitting bag for a time out.

Days pass.
Weeks pass.
Christmas comes (brings Harmony needles) and goes.
Tuscany Shawl has been started AND finished. (so much for Ishbel being the first!)

Somewhere in the midst of all that DH brings up my Ishbel and gently asks if I want him to frog it to ease the pain of taking out all that work. I do not know the answer he was expecting, but I say if you want to.

One day I come home from work and my skein of beautiful periwinkle sea silk is sitting on my sofa. 

This yarn really does deserve to become an Ishbel. 

Let me try again, this time with my new Knit Pick's Harmony needles!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

A Tale of 3 Ishbels, Part 1

Where do I begin?

I fell in love with the lace shawl call Ishbel last summer. I saw my Amy Singer wearing one back in September. (did you notice the 'my'?) So, I bought the book from the designer's website. You can find Ysolda here.

I knew the perfect yarn that would work perfectly on the pattern.

It was Handmaiden Sea Silk in Periwinkle colorway. I was able to score a 150 grams larger hank of this from The Loopy Ewe.

I started doing my research. I had the yarn and the pattern. This was going to be my first shawl actual triangle shawl from a pattern and I wanted it to be perfect. I read the Ravelry discussion boards for the opinions on needles, gauge, circulars verses straights, to use stitch markers or not, counts of each row etc.

I had heard over and over that the pointy tipped needles were going to work the best for me. So, CO on my Ishbel. I was ready, I had my Addi Lace Turbo needles (recently freed up from all that Christmas knitting!).

I was cruising:
I loved how the color was working. It is a little variegated and I was SO happy! However, I paused when I got to the lace portion. I was nervous! So, I waited until a bright sunny Saturday afternoon before Christmas to start Section A. I was off and running. I CAN do this!

Row 1 of Section A - DONE
Row 2 of Section A - DONE
Row 3 of Section A - DONE
Row 4 of Section A - DONE
Row 5 of Section A - something isn't right here

Something is very wrong, I do not have the correct number of stitches at the end of the row to do what the pattern is telling me I need to do. This isn't good. Panic sets it.

I recount the stitches....and again....because the being off on counting truly must be in my head. I must have skipped counting some stitches. I mean how do I lose them when I've been knitting with saying the stitches out loud.

Ok still in panic mode. Maybe I'll just put it away for the night and they say things will be clearer in the morning.

Stay tuned!

Monday, March 15, 2010

20 Questions and Answers

I needed something for this blog, as the weather hasn't been cooperating for taking knitting photos!

1. Explain what ended your last relationship?
Life goals.
2. When was the last time you shaved?
2 days ago.
3. What were you doing this morning at 8 a.m.
In traffic heading to work.
4. What were you doing 15 minutes ago?
Eating supper.
5. Some things you are excited about?
Our interior doors being in the last stage of painting! My chocolate wall! My counts matching in section A of my Ishbel, so far!
6. What is your favorite flavor of JELL-O?
7. Your prom night, what do you remember about it?
I loved my dress. I wonder what I did with it as it would make a great knitting!
8. Do you have any famous ancestors?
I'm not sure about this one. I've heard some 'tall tales'.
9. Last thing received in the mail?
My Yankee it and this one is on Cape Cod...BONUS!
10. How many different beverages have you had today?
3. Hot chocolate, kool-aid and now Barq's root beer. Funny those are my 3 favorites!
11. Do you ever leave messages on people’s answering machine?
Yes, all the time it appears.
12. Do you draw your name in the sand when you go to the beach?
No. However we do take photo foot prints every beach we step foot on. It is tradition!
13. Any plans for Friday night?
This week it will be studying.
14. Do you like what the ocean does to your hair?
15. Have you ever received one of those big tins of 3 different popcorns?
Yes. I love the salty-butter one!
16. Do you re-use towels after you shower?
17. Describe your keychain(s)?
It is a wrist strap from Etsy. I own 4 and rotate through them. I love the fabric flowered prints I've ordered on all of them!
18. Where do you keep your change?
Change? There is no change when you use a debit card for everything.
19. When was the last time you spoke in front of a large group of people?
Last week for 8 people. For a group around 50 it was back in December.
20. What kind of winter coat do you own?
LLBean quilted riding jacket for work days, ski parka for long times outside, long insulated one for skirt days, corduroy one for chino days, leather one for dry above freezing days....hmmmm, no wonder why that closet is packed!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Stitch Scarf Completed

YAY! I LOVE this scarf!!
Pattern: Stitch Scarf
Yarn: Handmaiden Sea Three
Colorway: Sangria
Yardage: 246 yards, I have 4 grams left
CO: 20 then increased

The top photo really shows the colorway best. It is THAT bright! However, I like how it looks in my yarn bowl!

This pattern was great for mindless knitting while watching TV. I was flying with it on my Harmony Needles. Of which, my DH heard, probably every night, I was knitting this scarf, how much those needles truly rock!

I'd love to make another one in another color, but there are so many other fine patterns out there in my Ravelry que (that would be 70!) it makes it hard to repeat.

I've also made a little progress on my chevron scarf. I've used 2 balls of yarn so far, so I have 2 balls left to go. I've basically come to the conclusion that this will not be done for this winter season. The more I think about it, it is a good thing. The yarn and scarf is light enough to make for a nice summer knit - with our humidity!
I finally have another bunny photo for you. This was a gift from my SIL almost 15 years ago! Too cute!!