Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Click Click Clickety Click

Can you hear the sound of needles clicking?  That's me, busy working on Liberty.  It's coming along nicely now that I’ve gotten fairly comfortable with two-handed knitting again.  I’ll just be knitting along, immersed in following my chart, and ever now and again, I'll stop and take a look at my knitting and I think, "Oh. WOW!"  It is SUCH fun to see the pattern emerging.

One thing though.  My white stitches are a little tight and I think it's because I'm knitting the white with my left hand, which is not my dominent hand.  If anyone out there has any ideas or tips to help me with this, I'd surely appreciate it.

When I need a break from pattern squinting, I pick up the Cute Baby Kimono (from Mason-Dixon Knitting) I'm making for my friend's daughter, Ellen.  I’ll be making two of these since Ellen is having twins!   I’m using Berroco Comfort in Rosebud.  Since big sister, Kate, will only be 1 ½ when her sisters are born, Ellen needs something that is super easy care and Comfort fits the bill.

This is knit all in one piece with seaming up the sides and underarms.  I'm almost finished with the left side.  This is an easy and quick knit and has been my take along knitting this week.

Oh, and one more thing.  I've discovered that a nice steaming mug of Earl Grey (decaf) is the perfect accompaniment to Liberty knitting.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Liberty at Last

I’ve been wanting to make Mason-Dixon’s Liberty Blanket from Mason Dixon Knitting Outside the Lines ever since my pre-ordered copy arrived on my doorstep.  I even took a Fair Isle class at my LYS.  I keep check on the Fair Isle web cam, which Ann graciously provided in the book,  but don’t always get to see much since I tend to forget that when it’s 5:30pm (or later) at my house, it’s nighttime there. But that hasn't made any difference lately since their web cam must be broken since it's been offline.   At various times over the past few years, I’ve thought hard about Liberty but always got overwhelmed with choosing a color.  But the idea started percolating again back in December.

So at the end of December, after all the baby hats were done, and the one Christmas scarf had been finished and gifted, I took a trip to my LYS to browse their Ultra Alapaca.  Remembering Heather’s admonition, while choosing yarn for my Linen Stitch Scarf, to choose colors that make me happy, I brought home Cyclamen, Winter White, Chianti, and Pale Blue.  And then, I just looked at them for a couple of weeks. 

In the end, I chose Chianti (the red next to the blue) for the background and Winter White for the foreground.  And no, this is not an Alabama (the football team) blanket.  These colors make me happy.  Plain and simple. 

I had to go down to a size 5 needle to get gauge and now that I'm in the colorwork, it's a little slow but I'm hoping that things will pick up once I get used to holding yarn in both hands. 


It's so exciting to watch the pattern emerge.  And the feel of the wool/alpaca is absolutely wonderful. 

Ann says in the book that this is "knitting for the ages" and she's right.  So much so that I've already asked Elizabeth to photograph it for me.

Ann and Kay, I hope that I do you proud. 

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Socks and Blankets

This time of the year, my thoughts always turn to blankets and socks.  I’m not sure why it’s not sweaters and shawls instead but there you have it.  Blankets and socks.  Now, that doesn’t necessarily mean that I cast on for a blanket and a pair of socks but I think about it.  And I search for patterns.
This year though, I’ve done more than just think about it.  I’ve cast on for a pair of socks.  I haven’t gotten very far but that’s because I’ve pulled them out and started over.  I started out using mini circulars because I have heard they’re wonderful, once you get used to the tiny things.  But I struggled with my K2P2 ribbing, it was going soooo slow on those circs, and I was getting rather frustrated so I ripped it out and started over on DPN’s and all was right in my world again.


I’m using the Basic Sock Pattern from Churchmouse that I bought a while back along with some Paton’s Kroy Socks FX yarn that’s been in my stash for a while.  I have a confession to make.  I didn’t swatch.  The pattern calls for size 1 needles and so I just started right in.  My rational being that in the past, I’ve knit socks using a size 2 or 3 using the same cast on of 64 stitches and they just didn’t fit as snug as I would have liked.  That’s my story and I’m sticking to it!

Just Do It!
I’ve been wanting to make Mason-Dixon’s Liberty and Mitered Square Blankets for a long time, since I first saw them in the books, as a matter of fact.  I even bought some Takhi for the Mitered Square Blanket.  But in the end, I couldn’t decide on a color scheme.  Did I want to use just just a few colors or a whole bunch?  Did I want a recurring theme?  And which yarn would to use since it didn't have to Tahki or even cotton for that matter.  And Ravelry was no help.  Did you know, that to date, there are 836 projects on Ravelry? 
And then, there is Liberty.  Fewer projects on Ravelry for sure but  I was just plain undecided about colors.  And since it has a steek, it really needs to be wool.  I like the one pictured in the book but did I really want to use the same colors?

As you can tell, indecision reigned, not to mention the little matter of budget.  At any rate, back at the end of December, I decided that 2012 was the year to JUST DO IT!  So stay tuned, you’ll be hearing more about these blankets in the coming months!