Finishing Projects

Today I can proudly say that I survived my first week as a Clinic Assistant. It wasn’t without bumps and bruises but I escaped mostly unscathed.

This weekend is a little bit bittersweet since I say goodbye to my guy on Monday for a week – he’s spending a week with the guys in North Carolina – and I have decided that I need to concentrate on finishing those projects that I’ve been carrying around for ages … well, at least one has been carried around for ages.

DROPPS Tunic ... ready to travel

DROPPS Tunic … ready to travel

My DROPS Design tunic is the first on my list. I’ve taken it to my knitting guild meeting and to my knitting group this week. I have an inch or so of 1×1 ribbing (on size 1 needles) to go before I reach the straps … and then I “just have to seam it”! Since it’s been so blasted hot here in Florida this August, I’ll be excited to have it finished and be able to wear it!

Hair Elastics holding my stitches on the DPNs

Hair Elastics holding my stitches on the DPNs

The beaded scarf is ready to be grafted together. The construction is unique to me in that it is knitted from the bottom up in two pieces (with the beading being on the bottom or at the beginning of each piece.) Now, both pieces are a bit longer than the 27 inches that is suggested in the pattern so that (I hope) it can be wrapped double around my neck and the beaded edges pulled through the loop. We’ll see when it’s grafted. I haven’t ever grafted a 2×2 rib before so this will be a new adventure for me. I found a YouTube video that was a very *very* brief explanation of how to do this and I’ll be writing about my experience after I’m successful!

I have my bag with the lace end panels, too, to finish. They’ve really taken a back seat in my knitting bag. Mostly because I have to start working on the lace in relative seclusion. So, next week, when I’m alone at night after work, I will be working on the lace panels. I’ve already knitted and frogged the first panel several times. Maybe the fifth or sixth time will be the charm.

Felted Scuffs ready to be Felted Today!

Felted Scuffs ready to be Felted Today!

Last, but not least, I have to felt the scuffs that I knitted in Maine this summer for N. Just a bit of hot water in the washer and I’ll be good to get that done this afternoon. Maybe after his daughter, R, washes her couch slip cover … I hear it needs it! 🙂

Gone knitting!

Drops Design Tunic 111-21

Bet you didn’t know that 21 was my lucky number!

I’ve done some frogging lately … my brother’s birthday socks for the second time because despite the fact that they were on gauge, they were never, repeat, NEVER, going to fit over his big heels! … and also my Boxy Cardigan made from my wonderful Sea Colors Maine yarn because my Yankee ingenuity bit me in the behind. I will rip back a row from now on so that I don’t have to make a join in the middle of the piece. (Or I’ll make a different join. What was I thinking?)

One project that I have not had to frog is my DROPS design tunic. I bought the yarn, Berroco’s Pure Pima (color 2243/due lot 169, 115 yards, 100% Pima Cotton) online ages ago because it was such a good deal and cotton is a great fiber for Florida living. It was also a really pretty light blue that I loved.

One side is done and ready to be seamed to the second side which is on the needles and I’ve made it to the ribbing at the top. The tunic is mostly stockinette stitch and on rather small needles (US 6 and US 1) and then it’s 1×1 ribbing at the top on the smaller needles.

What changing from the 6 to the 1 needles does is make the Empire waistline gather beautifully. The top should be a somewhat close fit and the bottom will be loose and drapey. I can’t wait to have it done because this is the time that I can wear it!

One word of warning. The DROPS patterns are written differently and can be confusing to follow. I normally would say, “Don’t read ahead” but for these patterns (at least the ones that I have made up) I would recommend reading the pattern first and making sure that you have an idea of how the project goes together. I haven’t bought the DROPS yarn to go with their patters (YET!) but I think their prices are very fair and they’ve been around for awhile, too! I’m guessing their products are good, too.

Gone knitting!

Get ‘er Done!

I’m getting a lot of stuff done so why am I still beating myself up and saying that I’m unproductive? Why do I “worry” about being unproductive when I am getting work done? Because it’s not the work that I “need” to be doing? That others expect me to be doing? Because I’m not making “enough” money? I just need enough to pay the bills and can make do with less than most so what’s all the “anxiety” about?

My Boxy Cardigan is two thirds complete. Sleeves are all that is left to do. They should go pretty quickly and I hope that I love the sweater as much as I remember loving the one on display that I saw at the Maine fiber frolic.

The cotton tunic has kind of been set aside so that I can make a few new items to add to my Etsy shop … or new 3 B Street shop (more about this in a later post) … but the back is so close to being done – despite the inches and inches of 1×1 ribbing on US #1 needles!

I have knitted a new pair of fingerless mittens in a very simple 2×1 rib and just have to weave in the ends. I suspect that they will need a button or some embellishment because just by themselves they’re a bit flat – at least in my opinion – despite a variegated yarn.

And then there’s the Rasta Basket that I have knitted in a wonderful colorway called “Archangel” and while the knitting part is finished, the finishing part is a bit sticky for me! I am not really a sewer. (I can hear friends of mine in my head telling me that I am labeling myself and if I want to be a success I need to consider myself an adept sewer!) Yesterday I got out the old Singer and it took me a good part of the afternoon to assemble the lining only to discover that the handles that I chose are about two inches too big for the bag! Back I go to the store today to see if I can find some that are smaller!

I have pulled out the old Michael’s samples that I haven’t seen while I was away this summer. I am ready to make my board for knitting classes (did you see my calendar for classes?) and have to take some signs for the yarn aisle in the store. I also need to make copies of the calendar for the demo desk! I sure hope that the knitting classes will pick up since it’s fall …I hope!

My to-do list keeps growing but I am checking things off, too. Just for today, I am going to be pleased about what I have gotten done and what I will do today. Life is good.

Gone knitting!

 

A Little Bit of Progress

Those of you who know me well, know that I like to eat. I also like to bake (can anybody say, “sweet tooth”?) And over the years, it’s become my mother that I see when I walk to the mirror. Now don’t get me wrong, my mother was a lovely woman and I love her a lot. But I never wanted to have her body. SO, I’ve been to see a lovely woman In Portland, Maine who is helping me try to get my hormones into balance with food. Of course, I’m also going to have to move my body up off the knitting couch … but since my feet are finally healed (or healthy for now, anyway), I feel confident that we can start walking and hiking at the very least!

Gaia Shoulder Hug by Anne Carol Gilmour
(A FREE pattern on Ravelry!)

So, tonight’s knitting night again and while we drove to Portland and back, I didn’t knit on the way home. I slept. I’m looking forward to visiting with the “girls” and I hope to finish the last few repeats of my Gaia Shoulder Hug.

Piggy Hat Pink

I think that I will start the commissioned piggie hat next … and it’s going to be sent with matching mittens. (Since they’re for a baby, she’ll need the little stringy thing to go through her jacket so mittens don’t get lost! I) think I can sew/embroider a cloven hoof on the mitten and that will be cute. I’ll try!

Maine Woods Yarn & Fiber “Maine Lobstah” Superwash Sock

 

 

I have finished one Maine Lobstah sock and it’s quite tight. Since this is my handy-dandy go-to pattern for socks, I am a bit surprised but am not going to worry much. On occasion, even Queen Bees make mistakes. I may be using a smaller needle … or maybe was using a bigger, inappropriate needle before. Whatever the reason, if they’re too small, they’ll be a gift for someone in my family with slightly smaller feet than I have at Christmas time. I bought two hanks of the yarn because I loved it so much and the woman said I can probably get three socks out of each hank! Woo-hoo! I love knitting with this yarn. It’s really got a great hand, it’s washable and it’s not “splitty” at all! I also happen to love the colorway that I chose!

Dropps Tunic … going nowhere! But check out the beautiful Signature needles!

My poor tunic hasn’t budged out of my knitting bag. Oh well! I still love the yarn color and I adore knitting on my first of many pairs of Signature needles (green is US6).

I will be knitting up a Falling Leaves scarf designed by Lucy Neatby with some yarn that I bought at the Maine Fiber Frolic last year (2011). I fell in love with the pattern and have bought it on Ravelry.com with my white bunny blend yarn in mind. Another gift for a friend who is so deserving!

Had a lobster roll for lunch after fasting for a blood test. Not sure what’s for dinner but I’m looking forward to balancing these hormones and seeing myself in the mirror again! A big grocery shop tomorrow!

Gone knitting.

(An aside … bought some new stitch markers and thought you should see the cutest ones … by Lantern Moon, purchased online! They’re buzzing around my Gaia!)

 

 

Frustration Strikes!

Yes, it did strike today … and on more than one level. Kind of like the s#%t that hit the fan a couple of days/posts ago. Many little annoyances … placed carefully in one day so that I’ll appreciate the easier days, perhaps?

I had gotten pretty close to done with the back of my Dropps tunic. Only to realize today that I was making the XXL size rather than the XL. I’m simply not an XXL. So … without further ado, I had to frog it. Had to. There was no way to finagle it to be right without a battle. I’ve pulled my beautiful green Signature needles out again and have cast on the proper number of stitches for the XL tunic and will get back to where I need to be!

I did finish the fingerless mitts that have been languishing in my project bag for ages. I think they were started way back before Christmas when I was making oodles of fingerless mitts for an order. These were made with Lana Bamboo by Cascade and they’re really pretty – will go well with denim as they’re a lovely mottled blue color way. I am pleased with the pattern even though I didn’t care for the needles that I used (at least for the second one). Nor did I mark the pattern well when I knitted up the first mitt so that I made a couple of matching errors on mitt number two. No matter, I frogged a few rows and started again so they were “right” and they matched each other.

The “throne” at our Maine house has been malfunctioning this summer. It’s been “out of service” for several days. Today I was told it was finished and ready to be used again. Discovered that it’s not really and will have to wait until Thursday … in the meantime, I guess I’m grateful for the upstairs bathroom!

Company arrives Thursday and we still haven’t gotten a new vacuum – well, we did but it didn’t suck. Literally. It’s been returned but the house needs vacuuming NOW! 🙂 Maybe we can get a new vacuum with suction included tomorrow. I don’t think our blankets will be back from the dry cleaner in time for their beds. Sure hope the weekend is warmer than it’s been so they don’t miss them. Antique wool blankets are wonderful but they do have to be cleaned once every decade or so. LOL!

Please don’t notice the dirty/old stove! Thanks!

I did make a successful breakfast food – pull-apart cinnamon bread. It looks pretty good and I hope it tastes equally good. I was in the way in the kitchen but dinner was also on the table at a decent hour. With construction and dogs and all that has been happening in this house over the last few days, it’s a miracle that I can get anything accomplished.

If I could see in the dark, I’d be going for a bit of a walk tonight to walk off the frustration. For now, I’m not knitting. I’m just done. Maybe it’s time for bed.

 

From my Northern Atelier

A dog on my lap, and knitting in my northern atelier … this is the best place I could be today. The sun is shining and there’s a gentle breeze blowing, the first laundry load of the season is hanging on the line. Life is good!

Thought I would catch you up with my knitting projects that are currently on my needles … they are growing and I have a bunch planned for this summer. I even brought a huge L.L. Bean bag full of yarn with patterns for most of them up with us from Florida. I had thought to knit all that up before buying any more yarn … well … it was a good try!

#1 – Log Cabin(-ish) Baby Blanket – I’ve never knitted one of these before and having seen a couple on the Internet, I decided to give it a shot. The yarn is an acrylic yarn because baby blankets have to be super washable and somewhat ordinary. But the blanket is coming along and almost finished. It’s pretty cute and I hope my customer likes it. After this, one more baby blanket will complete the order.

Log Cabin(-ish) Baby Blanket (Queen Bee Knits Original)

#2 – My tunic … which takes a back seat to “real work” is growing a bit since I last photographed it. I still love the color but the yarn is really splitty … maybe why it was wearing such a discounted price? Whatever … when it’s done, I think I’ll love it.

Dropps Tunic (Pattern #111-21) in Berroco Pure Pima (color 2243)

#3 – Fingerless gloves. These poor things have been sitting in their project bag minding their own business for way too long. I started them last fall and then put them aside because orders were flowing in and needed to be a priority (not that I’m complaining, that’s a great problem to have!) So, maybe now it’s time to pay some attention to them and get the second mitt knitted up, attach a couple of thumbs and send them to their intended recipient.

Vancouver Fog Fingerless Gloves in Cascade Yarns Lana Banbu (lot 93979 col 02)

#4 – One of the yarns that I bought in Gloucester is being knitted into a simple baby sweater and I’m totally in love with the yarn and the sweater (and the baby, too). The woman at Coveted Yarns told me that when you knit up the yarn it almost becomes a neutral and I’m starting to think she was right – despite the bright rainbow colors of the hand-dyed yarn. Hopefully, I’ll have enough to make a sweater and a hat or booties … but I am way ahead of the baby (who is not fully cooked yet!)

Knitting Pure & Simple Bulky Baby Pullover in Flat Rocks Yarns Whirlpool (#28 Grateful Threads)

#5 – Cooked Lobster Claw mittens – this my first original pattern that I will soon be adding to my shop on Ravelry. I have had two test knitters give the pattern a go and they’ve given me some wonderful feedback and a few photos of their projects. I’m happy to report that they’re really great looking and I think knitters will love it! I have one pair and one mitten knitted – so, unless I can sell single mittens, I had best make a matching one!

Oops! That's the real thing!

Ha! Well, now you know what I’m up to … I leave you with a photo of my laundry drying (yes, seriously!)

Gone Knitting!

Proof – on the needles and newly finished

Here are the photos, as promised!

Socks for my Boy!

Socks for my boy in Trekking XXL (75% super wash wool, 25% polyamid). This yarn might be the most wonderful sock yarn ever but knitting with it has been a nightmare! The center-pull ball has been in knots from the first pull. Grrr! What a pain in the neck (or needles!) But the socks are looking good and the boy has asked for them (the third pair!) Promised for graduation in mid-June.

New yarn arrival!

Yes, you can ooooh and ahhhh!

I bought the Berroco Pure Pima and Cascade Yarns Fixation for two projects. The Berroco is for a cotton sweater (sleeveless tunic) for moi. The Fixation is for a pair or two of baby socks … trying a new pattern!

Also FO –

HUGE socks ... soon to be felted!

Two super huge socks all ready to be felted. These are for my Etsy shop at the end of the summer. One lavender and one multi-colored, fall colors (green, orange, brown, purple, burgundy) both will be felted to size and be ready to go to some cold tootsies!

Flower Power Dish Cloth

Also trying to use up some of the cotton yarn that I’ve been carrying around. This green turned into a dish cloth. Perhaps it will live in my kitchen (replacing the icky ones that are there) or perhaps it will be matched with a couple more and sold in my shop. We’ll see what I decide.

Cooked Lobster Mittens (a Queen Bee Knits Original Pattern)

Since I have a bunch of wonderful merino wool that I bought in Maine last summer, I decided to resurrect my original pattern and make some more Cooked Lobster Mittens. I love these cute little mittens for kids. I’ll be knitting up several small pairs (and knitting up the bands for the claws, too) for my shop. One down … if you want a pair in a specific size, best to request because I know they’ll fly off the shelves!

Meantime, a friend of mine and her partner welcomed to the world a beautiful baby girl yesterday. I’m thinking a pair of those lovely cabled baby booties needs to be knit up and sent to West Palm Beach! What yarn to use? What yarn to buy?

Oh, the challenges this Queen Bee faces every day! (The last was said in sarcasm … next, in all truth and sincerity) How lucky I am!

Got to wait for my camera battery to charge so I can post the pictures. For now, I’m gone knitting!