Monday, October 30, 2006

Fiber Trends Felted Clogs

Probably one of the popular classes I teach at the yarn shop is the Fiber Trends Felted Clog class. Each time I teach it, I get the urge to make another pair. This time I did, and now I have a Christmas gift for my son's girlfriend. I haven't made up my mind if I will felt them first or just for fun, give them to her this big. I'm afraid she might be insulted even though I'd do it for fun. Any thoughts?
Some of the reasons these slippers are so popular are:
1) They are warm.
2) They are comfortable.
3) There is little finishing.
4) The sole is double thick so wears longer.
One disadvantage is that they are extremely slippery! I tell students to use the puff paints that you can get in the craft stores and paint designs or dots all over the sole.
The top cuff is turned over and joined to the slipper with a 3-needle bind off. Two soles are knit and stitches picked up around the original slipper.
The second sole and the original sole are lined up and held together.

Knit through the stitches on both needles. For the cuff and one version of the sole, the stitches are bound off as they are knit. I'm making the version with a "bumper" so the stitches are just knit together; then another row is knit with some increases to compensate for the curves in the sole, then bound off.

I had to redo the knitting together row after these pictures were taken as I should have been knitting in the other direction-with the sole facing me.


Sunday, October 29, 2006

The Wonderful Wallaby

Last week my son innocently said he was buying an American Girl doll for our granddaughter for Christmas and thought it would be nice if Myna (a 2 year-old's version of Grandma which stuck through 2 additional siblings) knit matching sweaters for our granddaughter and the doll. My first reaction was, I've got other things I'd rather knit, but before long I was looking for patterns. It had to meet certain criteria: seamless garment with little finishing and something knit on needles larger than 3 or 4. My thoughts always came back to my favorite sweater pattern, The Wonderful Wallaby by Cottage Creations, but that presented a challenge which I rather like-there was no pattern for the doll, so I'm going to work on that. Here's the progress so far.
It is knit with my favorite yarn for children-Encore-because it wears well and is washable and size 8 needles. As a single father with primary custody of 3 children, I can't see my son hand washing any sweaters.
As maybe you can see from the picture, the sweater is knit in the round to the underarm. The pocket is picked up just after the ribbing, knit, then attached to the sweater with a 3-needle fusing-similar to 3-needle bind off.
This pattern is so versatile as it is written for all sizes from children's size 2 to adults supersize which is to fit a 48" chest. I've made it for children of all ages and for a son-in-law and I have one too which I love. If your LYS doesn't carry the pattern, send a large stamped, self addressed envelope for a pattern list to "Cottage Creations, At the Farm on Deer Creek, Carpenter, Iowa 50426-0070."


Saturday, October 28, 2006

Saturday Sky October 28

A beautiful sky greeted me this morning! Mother always said, "Red sky in the morning, sailor take warning" but the day was ok. Was cloudy and got windy, but I was inside the shop teaching all day, and after a quick trip to the drug store for some prescriptions for my husband, I was baking for a party for my grandson's confirmation tomorrow. Did make a quick trip to the hospital this morning to bring my husband home after his angiogram and placing another stent in his heart yesterday. He's fine, esentially no change from 2 years ago when he had stents numbers 6-8 put in. I kid him that he has so much metal in his heart, I just have to hold out a magnet and he comes to me!
Even the sky to the west was pretty.


Friday, October 27, 2006

What I Haul in My Car

Whenever we need to use trunk space in a car we need to use my husband's car because mine is always full! Yesterday the back seat was also full! This is the yarn I purchased for the MN Knitters' Guild Service Committee to donate to Childrens' Home Society for their Little Red Stocking program.The trunk is always the storage space for the knitting and crocheting of the group I started that meets at Culver's everyweek and donates items to charity. At last count we have donated over 4000 things to local charities and that doesn't count what is in my trunk right now. Obviously, I have to sort it out and make more donations.


Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Yarn I Bought on Vacation

Usually I don't go into yarn shops when I go on vacation because I've found they don't have anything I can't get at home. Before I left home, I was looking for qiviut yarn and discovered Prince Edward Island had a musk ox farm and a mill outside of Charlottetown, so thought maybe I'd find some. No luck with the qiviut-we arrived in Charlottetown on Sunday and Monday was Canadian Thanksgiving so few stores were open and anyway I couldn't persuade the bus driver to drive us out of town to the mill. Shops in other towns didn't even know what qiviut was. But I found some treasures! (Sorry the pictures are turned sideways. Blogger was giving me so much trouble downloading pictures today, I just left them the way they downloaded them.) In the town of Baddeck, just a couple blocks from our hotel, was Baddeck Yarns and I found this hand dyed Fleece Artist merino wool sock yarn made in Nova Scotia. The pink is Baddeck Pink, specially dyed for the city of Baddeck, and the multicolor-the picture doesn't show the true beauty of the yarn-is called Celtic Colours for the Scottish heritage.

This is a local pattern named for the lake the city of Baddeck is on, Bras D'or Socks.
In the city of St. Andrews, New Brunswick we found Cottage Craft and bought enough of this yarn to make a sweater named for the area. The price was right-a kit with yarn and pattern cost only $34.95 USD or 3 for $99. The yarn is nice Canadian wool. The website for this shop is


Sunday, October 22, 2006

Lobster Claw Mittens

At our hotel in Halifax I spotted these mittens and was intrigued by them. I would stop at the display case everytime I passed and study them to try to figure out how they were made and why they looked like they do. At our first chance I tracked down the shop (luckily, it was just around the corner from our hotel) and went in to inquire. They are lobster claw mittens-just made to resemble lobsters, not the utilitarian mittens I found in a Google search which have a separate finger for the ring finger. I still want to figure out how they are made-if someone knows a source for a pattern, please let me know!


Saturday, October 21, 2006

Saturdays Skies

Saturday, October 6 on Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia on the Cabot Trail.

Saturday, October 14 on the road from Bar Harbor, Maine to Boston, taken from the bus.

Saturday, October 20 from my back deck again. It started out cloudy this morning; in fact there was some of the four letter word starting with "S" on my way home from Curves this morning. The temperature on our thermometer now at 1:30 is 41 and it's brighter outside, but not really sunny yet. Maybe there's hope!


Friday, October 20, 2006

One Person in US with my name
LogoThere is:
person with my name
in the U.S.A.

How many have your name?

Thanks QOE for this site!

What I Did on my Vacation

I'm home from Boston, Maine, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick, and Cape Cod. Since it was a bus trip and we drove about 2200 miles, I had plenty of time to knit, so this is what I did. (One sock was about 1/2 done when I left.)

The yarn for the red, green, blue, and yellow sock is Regia Jubilee Color and the yarn for the pink and gray is Austermann Step which has Aloe Vera and Jojoba Oil in the yarn. It is soft to work with and supposed to last for 40 washes, I think it was.

This is the heel I use on all my socks now-it is hard to see the details, but you can see that the color stripes continue around the heel without interuption as does the ribbing pattern. The heel was developed by Gerdine Strong to give a larger heel area in which to place designs. There is no heel flap, so you don't have the problem of picking up the stitches neatly without holes. The gusset is increased while knitting around the heel, then the heel is turned in the traditional way although it is done over more rows. I love the ease of making this heel, plus the continuity of the pattern of the yarn and the stitches and the way it fits. The directions are in the Fall 2003 Knitters. Note, the first 2 rows of turning the heel are incorrect, so check the errata in the next issue or on the website.

Oh! I had a marvelous trip-the weather was nearly perfect and the fall colors spectacular.


Sunday, October 01, 2006

Warm Hands Knit Along

A pair of mittens completed except for the thumbs. Nothing fancy, but practical for some child who needs warm hands.
Last Saturday I posted about the sock class I taught in which all the students had major problems and I was afraid they'd give up. Well, yesterday was the next class and they were all there with their sock completed to the point they were supposed to be. Unknown to me, after the disasterous class last week they all went downstairs and purchased more sock yarn!
I'll see you in 3 weeks. No, I do not take along a lap top or go into internet cafes while I am gone-absolutely no cummunication with home.