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I Knit, Therefore I Blog

Kathy Kathy Kathy's recombobulation area

Updated: 2018-03-02T09:35:58.748-06:00


Bless me Blogger, for I have sinned.


It has been four years since my last confession.     How does this work again?  Blogger looks almost like a word processor now.  That's to the better.      I'm not capable of playing catch-up all at once.  I have knit a LOT of things and finished a few.  I have pictures on different devices, which are not necessarily this device.      Okay, not this device.  I'll get back to you.  Promise.Click➔ Interlude and Sing-Along  Hats for Cold Heads   I realized something one day when dear ol' FOIKTIB (Friend of I Knit Therefore I Blog), Sue, got upset because she thought I was going to present her a knitted object.  She thinks that means she has to do the same for me.  My response to that was a loud, What the Hell Else am I supposed to do with all this shit I'm knitting?*  I don't always feel that way, but it happens sometimes that when I give myself a project to knit for a special occasion it starts out fun, but gets to be a chore and an obligation.  So most of the stuff I knit is for no good reason, outside of socks. And inside of a sock, it's too dark to read.  I generally enjoy my knitting more if it's an impulse, rather than compulsory.  I don't wear hats, but I knit them.        Here is a finished object that currently rides around with me in a Mo's Irish Pub bag in my car.  Sometimes when I find somebody asking for change I ask the person if he or she would like a warm hat.  Sometimes they do.  If there is time, they get to choose.  The last time, was in a strip mall.  I wasn't going to ask because the guy already had a hat, but I reconsidered since we weren't in traffic.  The guy chose 3 for  people he knew.  After I came out of the dollar store, he told me where to come to find a couple of homeless families after dark.  So that was nice.  This hat was not one he chose.   Pattern: Advanced Beanie by Gralina FrieYarn: 220 Superwash Aran.  It is very soft and squishy, though a touch slippery to work     The Advance Beanie is bottom up  It has crown shaping that was new to me.  There are 3 rows between every decrease row.  That gives you a lot of room to play with stitch patterns, but every decrease row is a doozie.  In this case, they are 14 stitches each.  I have used it successfully on another hat.  Give a look-see.  The pattern is free.  Thank you Gralina Frie!    I usually prefer top down hats and toe-up socks, for two reasons.  One reason is that cast-ons have a big number of stitches. I keep loosing count, so I have to keep starting over.  The next reason is that I tended to cast on too tightly.  Did you notice the past tense?  Tended.  Recently, Laura, another FOIKTIB, taught me how to cast on loosely using the plain old long tail method.   So I am 50% more confident with bottom up hats.  There is no help for the counting problems.   **I will be swearing more often on the blog, now that I am not teaching children anymore.  (Woo F**n' Hoo!)[...]

Star Hats


I've knit a whole lot of stuff since last I blogged.  I've even a completed some.  Here are the ones I've photographed.  These are hats for Camp Happy Times. (Good video.)  Camp Happy Times brings kids ages 5 to 21 years old together.  The kids all have, or have had, cancer.  One special memory is camp hats.  There is a new theme for the hats every summer.  This year's theme is Stars.  All the hats are made (sewn, knit, crocheted) by volunteers.  Each camper can choose 2 caps, one themed and one unthemed.  Here are the ones I'm sending along.  It's not too late.  They can accept hats up to July 15, 2013.   

Camp Happy Times Campaign
Halos of Hope
P.O. Box 1998
Arlington Heights, IL 60006-1998

 Hat one:  Comet Crossing the Moon Hat: 2 strands superwash fingering weight held together.  Dale Baby Ull and Lanett.  Crewel work, various washable yarns.  Size large.
Hat two:  Stripes and Stars Hat:  Regia Crazy Colors 6-ply superwash, Glittery fabric glue star at peak, polar fleece stars appliqued with gold Sulky machine embroidery thread.  I think it's mylar.  Size medium.
Hat three:  Sun Hat:  Picture does not do this justice--couldn't capture how it glows.  Various fingering yarns and unplied worsteds, held double, all superwash wool.  Size small-medium.
 Hat four: This is OPK (Other People's Knitting).  This is Terri Minkin's unthemed contribution.  Washable acrylic.  Sizes small to large.  Super stretchy and soft.



RhythmicI finally published the drop stitch scarf/shawl pattern that I've been designing off and on for at least a couple of years.  It turned out really well, even better than I had hoped, actually.  It's fun to knit, it's not complicated, it can use just about any yarn or needle, it makes a nice scarf or a nice stole.  It can be sophisticated or rustic, blocked or free-form.  It's a good summer project.Here is a link to the Ravelry pattern page:  ParquetElegantRusticFloatyTextured  You can use bigger yarn and needles and make a shawl.DiVe Autumno--unblocked ParquetProud Mumma, that's me.[...]

Young Yarnie


My friends' daugher Layla at 19 months showing some yarn love.  I hope it lasts. 

Cross Your Fingers


The Problem

The Solution?

Sock Rehemming


One of the first real pairs of socks I ever made was a pair out of Collinette Jitterbug.  The yarn cost $21.00, which was a huge amount of money for sock yarn then.  It still is, but it is commonplace to pay that much and more nowadays for premium and hand-dyed yarn.  So I've had these socks from whenever that was.  I'd guess 2005 or 2006.  Even though they are 100% wool, they've worn like iron.  I used to put them in the dryer, but for a couple of years now, I haven't purposely put any of my handknits in the dryer except for a cotton/wool pair I have.  Despite not putting them into the dryer, and despite them being superwash wool, they finally started to felt.  I find this happens eventually to superwash when it has been washed a lot.  Being as these were early socks, the bind off of the cuff (these are toe-up) was unyielding and a little tight to begin with.  My skills have improved since then, so that my sock tops are quite forgiving and elastic now.  The tight bind off combined with the felting made these babies almost impossible to get on without tearing the edge.  The old bind off has been partially removed.I found some of the leftovers of the original yarn and rebound them.  The hardest part was unraveling / unthatching / picking out the old bind off.  It took almost an hour for both socks.  Reclaimed Bind-Off YarnClose Up of the New Bind-OffOnce I got that out, I worked three rows in the original ribbing pattern and bound off with Jeny's Surprisingly Stretchy Bind-Off The link goes to Cat Bordhi's YouTube demonstration, but I looked up Jeny Stairman's YouTube page and Jeny had it there.  DoneThe new bind off is wonderfully flexible and accomodating.  I can't wait to wear these again as soon as I put them in the wash.  Though the weather might actually be warm starting today.Progress on Nemesis[...]

Sporty Socks Done!


So here are the Cascade Fixation socks completed and modeled by the lovely me. I hope they are like the early pink pair I made out of this yarn and are all creamy and buttery on me pore ole crubes. I could feel every stitch of the blue pair I made.There is no pattern. The mirrored design is crossed stitches or 1 by 1 cables.  These are one of my favorite stitch treatments.I may end up redoing the bind off if it rolls too much. In that case I would have to frog the last row or so.  To frog is to rip back, or unravel your knitting.  This usage of "frog" has a rather silly etymology.  It derives from the expression, "rip it," which has been compared to what Americans teach their children are frog sounds, namely "ribbit, ribbit."  By association then, the term "frog" has come into use.  I'm sure that it was popularized through the Internet.  If not, I doubt I ever would have heard it or begun to use it.  Virtually every knitter I know also uses it.  I happen to do it a lot--frogging, that is.  The other IT I do very little. I have begun another sock.  I had intended it for a purse sock, but I need to read the pattern chart.  So we'll see about that.  I might dredge up one of my older socks in progress or start another pair for the purse.Isn't it pretty?  I lost the yarn label, but I thnk that it's 100% superwash from an Indy dyer who has a cutesy name like Baby Bunny or Busy Bee.  Seiding will know.  She and I bought the same yarn in the same colorway on the same day at the same booth at the same fiber festival at the same time.  Only mine was 20% off because I know how to talk to people.*  She already made socks out of it.  If she sends me a picture, I will post it here.**Absolutely untrue statement.  I don't know why I think it is funny to lie like that.   [...]

Craig's List


First of all, here is an update on the yellow-green-purple socklets.  I did rip back and fix the blotchy join.  I have knit to the tops and bound both off and have started the heel on one. 

(image) Knitting friend Ann found a couple of sales on Craigslist.  The first we visited was a destash sale by three knitting friends.  My first question when we got there was what were their names on Ravelry, but they didn't "do that."  There was a lot of nice yarn.  I thought the prices were too high.  I did make one offer on some red/orange/pink mohair, but I was turned down.  Ann made an offer on a kit and was turned down also.  She thinks they aren't really committed to destashing.  But I did get these very nice needles for $11.25.  The top three are 12" Japanese Clovers in which the cable and the needle are all of a piece.  I have a small collection of these.  They were $1.25 each.  The double points are ebony I think.  They were $2.50 a set.  They had a lot of other high end circular needles, but naturally I couldn't think of what I needed.  OK, "needed" might not be the proper word. 

(image) The second sale we hit was part of an estate sale in Waukesha (+/- 20 miles out).  It was mostly sewing things, quilting things, beading things and some books.  I guess there had been more knitting stuff, but that had been sold. There were lots of embroidery hoops.  Ann bought two and some embroidery cloth and I don't know what else.  I spent $5.00 and got everything in the picture.  The sellers were happy and so was I.   A funny thing that happened is that a young woman came in with a tiny babe in arms.  One of the sellers said that she would hold the baby if she wanted to put her down.  The offer was politely refused. The young mother bought something and left.  As soon as she was gone, Ann, the two sellers, and I all started squeeing about the baby and how we wished to hold her.  Must be our inner grandmothers coming out. 

Problem Solved


First iteration--Frogged to before heel
Second iteration--Frogged to before heel

Third iteration--On hold

Fourth iteration--Crocheted dishrag

Not Gonna Do It


The red line is for the afterthought heel.

Nope.  Not going to do it.  Not going to frog because of that purple blotch at the join.  Not going to frog that.  Nope.  No way.  Not again (again, again, again).  Four times would be too many for a pair of quickie Fixation socks.  Right?  Right?

Stuff I've been knitting


Wendy hat  SOFFFFFFFFFFFFT!  100% Silk>>>ArtYarns Regal Silk
Dish / Face Cloths
Anya hat

Anya tassel

Laura Socks



Two patterns, one pair.  Sorry that the pictures are a little dull.  The ziggity-zaggity sock is a Jaywalker by Grumperina and the one with the short row puffs is called Cloud Sock.  It's from the Six Sox Knitalong group.  You can look up all of those things on Ravelry.  The red yarn is KnitPicks Essential and the grey-white-black is Lang Jawohl.
     They took about 3 years.  The first one was a doozy.  That was the Cloud Sock.  I started it in 2009.  The second one took less than a week last month. 
     Right now, even as we "speak", Laura is undergoing breast cancer surgery in California.  The least I can do is try to pamper her feet. 

Not Knitting


    Elizabeth Sable and I got together in Madison yesterday and made a couple of quilt tops for Project Linus.  The rainbow sections we cut from a project I had begun some time in the 1990's, and actually, the background fabric was part of the project.  Long story.  Apparently, Project Linus will take the tops and assemble them into quilts.  Bonus!!  Now they'll get done. 

    There is a link to Elizabeth's blog on the right.  She has published a gorgeous entrelac pattern in a book that just came out.  There is a promotion going on.  Check it out.



These turned out great!  I copied Rosemary Penny's Flying Geese Fingerless Mitts pattern.  I had a whole different number of stitches, so I couldn't follow the pattern, but I totally got the technique from her pattern.  I used a standard 2 X 2 ribbing at the cuff and at the finger end and didn't bother adding length to the thumb.  I am considering making them a bit longer in the fingers with the last bit of that old handspun.  The deep zigzags make them try to scootch down.

Sunnyside Sweater


Yarn: Cherry Tree Hill Supersock Mill Ends
Size: 18-24 months
Baby:  Layla P.
Occasion: 1 year old

It is reported that the baby likes wearing the sweater.  This is very soft, springy yarn.    I have about 200 grams left. 

I seems like only yesterday


that I last posted.  Many things have been knit and made clean get-aways without being photographed. Here are some of the ones whose images I managed to capture. Doesn't this look like Giant Undies at an art gallery?  It's a shawl.  The pointy ends are folded around to the other side of the foam core.  It's a present for Beth, but she had to block it.  She likes the holes, so she blocked it large.  The yarn is Schaefer Marjaana in the Bette Davis color.  50/50 wool/silk. The pattern is This is Spinal Wrap from Ravelry.  Fingerless Mitts for Mitts of STEAL group on Ravelry.  It's a group who knits fingerless gloves for people undergoing kidney dialysis.  STEAL is some kind of syndrome that makes their hands cold during the process.  You can read more about it by following the link.  My dad was on dialysis for the last 2 or 3 years of his life.  I need to a) mail these off to the group or 2) find a dialysis center in Milwaukee where they can be put to good use. No pattern.  The yarn is some of my stash of 6-ply Regia crazy colors.These mittens are out of yarn spun by Sue and dyed by us in a class we took at Wisconsin Sheep and Wool a few years ago.  It was called Hot Rainbow Dye.  This "colorway" came about after we were done with the rainbow part and were just putzing around.   No pattern. 100% merino. It's just a coinkydinky that the next socks are also out of yarn handspun by Sue.  She obtained the roving from one of the new campers who came to knitting camp this past summer from Goldiemom, aka Leanne, of Handspun Treasures on Etsy. This is the beginnings of a pair of socks for myself.  I have completed one, but I am not enamored because the stitch pattern doesn't show that well.  I am considering ripping.  On the other hand I bought this specific 'spensive speckly yarn just for this project.  The pattern is Spring Forward from Knitty and the yarn is Koigu. These mittens are gigantor.  My friend Elizabeth has large hands, but I got carried away, especially in the area before the thumb.  She may try to felt them.  I should have taken them back and redone that part.  It wouldn't take long at all. Duh moment here.  No pattern (obviously, but let's call them Shoveling Mittens) Some really big super bulky yarn.  Wool.  Brand unknown.[...]

Last of the Holiday Knitting


The blocking rectangle is a neckwarmer/scarf.It got five of those little brown buttons to go along with the 5 buttonholes along the end that you can't see.  The recipient loved it.  The yarn is a particulary soft merino given to me by Terri Minkin.  The blue hat and mittens were for a little boy named Ethan.  They are all the same yarns--a wool aran weight stranded with some acrylic dk--except that the hat has some floofy yarn stranded along. I can't remember what it is.  I had given him an earflap hat 2 years ago and last year his mom asked me for another one because it covered his neck well.  It only took a year.  I hope he managed to keep warm last winter.  The remanining knitting is OPK which falls into the category of holiday knitting. OPK stands for Other People (who don't have blog)'s Knitting.  Laura made me the red clogs. They are the famous Fiber Trends' felted clogs pattern. She sent them to me to felt to my own size. I did this with her a few years ago. As you can surmise, the first picture is pre-felting. The second picture is after one run-through with a load of laundry. I was happy with the high amount of shrinkage on the first try.  I'll keep putting them through until they are ready to wear. This whale flap hat was made by Sue.  Now that's good knitting.  Even though I'm modeling it (because I like to try on hats), it is for Sue's sister, Laura (lousy with Lauras lately).  The earflap is lined with supersoft polar fleece.  Aaaaah.[...]

Sprite Collar


(image) I am very happy with this puckery Packery cowl.  It is a much altered version of the pattern, Sprite Collar by Lynn DT Hershberger from KnitCircus #16 Winter 2011-12. I added a lot of repeats and just went straight from beginning to end for about 12 inches.  I am hemming and hawing about whether or not to block it.  I kind of like the reverse side, too.  I also just completed another one on which I followed the pattern, so you'll get to see it done right also. 
      I'm still getting over the trauma from when KnitCircus went from print format to become an e-zine.  However, I know where this one is, unlike printed items that I may or may not be able to lay my hands on at any given moment. And bonus!--the cat can't  access it (like my opened original Harmony stitch pattern book upon which the cat yakked recently).  It is also a good value in that it is FREE to read.  If you decide to make one of the patterns, it is one price for all of the patterns. You can also get a paid pattern collection subscription, which is what I have.  Whenever a new issue comes out, I get an e-mail with the link and an e-mail with the patterns attachment.  I've gone through a lot of computers in the last 2 or 3 years, and haven't managed to bring all my files along.  I had been saving the pattern download on my hard drive and deleting it from my e-mail, but since I have g-mail, my space is basically unlimited, so I am also going to save all the issues there as well as on my hard drive (yes, I know about backups--plumbingwise, trafficwise, and datawise.  I only regularly participate in the first 2).  I was living in the past where you have to keep cleaning out your e-mail because you keep running out of space.
        Every single issue has wonderful patterns, both fanciful ones and practical ones.  Can't beat that. 

Post Title


     I've been meaning to get around to this.  Sorry about that.  I am just going to throw a bunch of pictures up on here and talk about them.  If you are looking for the deeper meaning, I can lay that out right up front.   It's "Kathy likes potching around with yarn."  To answer the musical question:  That's how deep is my love.       The yellow pictures are of a prototype for a hot/cold gel pack cover.   I keep these gel pack thingies in the freezer and I use them for aches and pains instead of ice.  It's not as great a discovery as the day they allowed ibuprofen to be sold over the counter and my menstrual cramps were finally tolerable, no.  But, they do work pretty well.  There is one size that won't stay in a towel which means it won't stay on my ankle or wherever else.  I needed to sew myself a couple of covers.  Seeing as how I don't seem to sew anymore, I decided to knit!  Plus, there are some gorgeous cablely designs on Ravelry of hot water bottle covers for more inspiration.  I tried lots of different things for the shoulders and the bind off on the bottom, but it is the side edges where I experimented the most.  I wanted the sides to be firm enough to keep the gel pack from sliding around or mooshing up. Overall, the gauge was a little too tight and the cozy a tad small.  This is Brown Sheep Cotton Fleece from my stash.       I learned a number of things, then went ahead with my holiday plan. I bought some more gel packs from the chiropractor and made cozies to cover them for my achy breaky friends and fambly. Did I use what I learned and come out with a pattern or formula of some kind? Guess. At the last minute, I ended up giving the prototype to my friend Steve's mom. She's a knitter, so I can only laugh when I think about her looking this over and wondering what the hell I was thinking. Yet, it looks ok, it's washable, and it functions well. Actually, I'm waiting to hear about how well they function, because I don't have one.Left to right: pink--Beth-2 strands of 75/25 sock yarn, green--Kurt-Blue Sky Cotton, Last 2 for Julie and Joe-Chevrons=acrylic, Red=TLC Cotton Plus     I have several other goodies, including opk (other people's knitting) that I will be posting in the days to come.  Look out!Interloper!  [...]

Knitwear in Action


Chambered Nautilus Hat and an unblogged shorty scarf, Lola (non-knitter) and Lynne in Madison on the 19th. 



Pattern below:  Norwegian Fisherman's Mittens by Eva Skulbru Eriksen. In the wash right now.  Will either go to the VA holiday party or Occupy Milwaukee if they come out man-size.  If not, we'll see then. Kureyon, 2 balls, with various small windings left over.  I followed the advice of another Raveler and made the thumb both narrower and shorter.  Otherwise, as per the pattern except that I made one cuff-up and the second top-down in order to make sure the fingertips would match. The ruler is about 6 inches (15 cm).Terri Minkin, America's Next Top Hand ModelPattern below:  Striped Sprite by Lynn Hershberger (ColorJoy).  I was hot to make this as soon as I saw it in the new issue of KnitCircus.  Just look at the first picture in the pattern link!  So Seussian, so chevronic, so clown, so spritely.  Of course I'm not making it as in the pattern.  I don't want it to actually touch my neck, leastways, not the front of my neck, near the Adam's apple.  Instead, I am going for a slouchy pouchy look.  I have about 5 or six inches done now.  The yellow yarn is creamy smooth merino that I got in our Knitting Camp swap this summer.  Shepherd's wool by Stonehenge Fiber Mill, Michigan, USA.  It matches the Cascade 220 Superwash perfectly by gauge and compensates manages to negate the tiny bit of scratch that the 220 has.  Thank you to whomever brought that to Knitting Camp.  Lynn Hershberger the designer, got back to me right away when I discovered that KnitCircus had made a small error in the pattern.  Check out her other pattern in her Ravelry Store.Pattern below:  Not Yet.  This is another of my own, probably to be incomplete, designs.  It's inspired by the Chambered Nautilus hat that I recently knit and a pair of socks I saw on Ravelry that I may never find again.  I've been looking.  If anything comes of it, I'll blog about it.Pattern below:  Yes and no.  This hat started out as this: From Russia, with Love: Cable Balaclava by Nikol Lohr. But then, I don't know, I decided to make it a hat. Maybe it seemed too scratchy for under someone's chin and touching their face.  It really is quite nice and thick and springy.  I used thick Kureyon--looking it up . . . didn't have the label anymore . . . Hmm.  It's not in Ravelry's yarn list.  I like it.  This will be a warm hat.  I think it was called Big Kureyon, but it's not as big as what they are calling Big Kureyon now.[...]

Swirling Gauntlets FO and Twisting Hat WIP


I have had this pattern in my Ravelry queue just about forever.  Swirling Gauntlets by Susanna IC I had some fresh yarn burning a hole in my pocket. It is Sugar Bunny, a new yarn from KnitPicks. They are calling it a limited edition. The color is called Platinum, but in some lights it looks like Putty or Sidewalk. It knits up just fine, though. I like it. I don't ADORE it, but I do like it. It's 80% merino and 20% angora. I can't resist angora.  The gauntlets, including my modifications took one ball with  about 2-3 yards left over.  Oopsie! I knew I had made the mistake, but I kept redoing that row and still couldn't get it. So I finished the whole repeat in the hope that it would look ok anyway.  Nope, couldn't live with it. Figured it out the next day.Nice fit.  Modifications: 1. This is not the thumb called for in the pattern. The original only has an opening and no sheath for your thumb. I added my usual 15 stitch gusset, though it was 16 this time because of the 2x2 rib. If you put it where the original thumb stitches are in the pattern, the design will pull too far toward your thumb. You have to move it about 4 stitches further away from the front/top/back of the hand. On the first I used my latest favorite way to increase stitches--knitting into the stitche below a la what's her name, but it didn't work out because of the rib. I went back to the lifted bar increase on the second mitt. looks better. You are viewing the second mitt. 2. Number of stitches cast on. The pattern called for 52. I cast on 56, or 1 extra ribbing repeat. Because of my mistake with the cabling, I was able to see that 52 were a little tight and that adding some to the palm side would not alter the appearance of the design. 3. Needles. I knit the cuffs on either end with size 3 needles (loose knitter here), but I knit the cable section with a size 4 because of the cable. I don't think it would have hurt to go up still another size there. Quite a bit of opportunity for upsizing.4. I forgot.This is another hat for the V.A. holiday party that's coming up next month. THe yarn is Plymouth Boku and it comes from a swap. There's one more skein, but I think I'm going to have to go into it to finish the hat. The pattern is Cables That Don't Cable Hat by K Yarns. [...]

Twirly Hat Done, also baby pic


Chambered Nautilus Tam.  Wearable in different ways.SmoothIt's reversible.  I intended the ridgier side to be the display side, but the people I showed it to liked the smoother side better.   Ridgy She of the great profile is my best friend at work for many years, Kerri.    RidgyThis is Jillian.  She is Kerri's daughter.SmoothLastly, little Layla--31 days old wearing her Aviatrix cap.  There is quite a bit of hat leftover in the back.  [...]

Not Flat Enough (along with my stomach)


This was the second major attempt.  Frankly, the 3rd is looking the same despite the addition of more short rows..  The pattern says it'll block out.  Obviously, I am skeptical.

Chambered Nautilus by Elizabeth Zimmermann



Layla's Hat

Yarn:  Cascade 220 Superwash
Pattern:  Aviatrix Baby Hat by Justine Turner
Size: second smallest
I have the button chosen.  Maybe I'll take another snapshot when I have it sewn on.