2023: Wk of 5/21-27; Ranunculus FO, Sea Glass Tee Cast-on, and Other Knitting News

RANUNCULUS FO

Final photo of this project. Very happy with how it turned out and that this pinkish yarn is now in a project that I’ll wear more often. Not thrilled with how mohair sheds but it’s kinda fun to be a “fluff ball”.

“SEA GLASS” TEE CAST-ON

Tee FO means it’s time to cast-on the next tee. I have so many I want to knit!! Sea Glass Tee won. I am using the Sea Glass Tee pattern but this time I’m switching between light and dark yarn every other row instead of every other stitch. The intent is so that the tee isn’t double thick as it is when you have to carry the yarn for every other stitch. I am using Figment by Deep Dyed Yarn in the Danger Danger colorway. I bought it at the local wool festival a year and a half ago. It’s a colorful variegated yarn with a metalic thread. I’ll use it for the dark color changing yarn. I’m using Berroco Quinoa in the Basmati colorway as the light color. It doesn’t change color but has an interesting texture. Too early to be sure but I think the alternating rows are working as I had hoped.

STITCH MARKER/PROGRESS KEEPER ACQUISTION

Big splurge! I went to Hobby Lobby and picked up some charms for a summer theme. Note the flower charms hanging from the stitch markers on my Sea Glass Tee. I had gotten those honeycomb stitch markers a while ago and never used them since they weren’t colorful. Now with the flower charms hanging from them, I’m loving them for this tee. Also, the honey bee progress keeper. It’s my goal to have seasonal stitch markers and progress keepers.

YARN OUT

I’m happy to share that this has been a very good year so far for Yarn Out. I was surprised to realize that I’ve had at least an FO every month and a tee FO every month except January. My yarn out has actually been twice that of my yarn acquisitions. This is good because my local yarn dying friend just announced yesterday that she will be doing an advent calendar this year afterall!!! (I had reached out to her a month or so ago and she said it wouldn’t be till 2024.) Thankfully I never ordered the advent calendars I was eyeing. I will definitely order hers. This will be in addition to the stitch marker/progress keeper advent calendar I bought. Now the question is, do I delay again the I yarn advent calendar I bought last year and not open it until 2024?? Three advent calendars does seem a bit excessive. But hey, they make cute Christmas decorations for our Florida condo rental. Since I do love my stash yarns, it’s been easy to focus on projects that use the yarns already in my stash. It is kinda my goal to reduce my “yarn wall” although I just love looking at all my colorful yarns on display along the kitchen counter that separates the kitchen for the living area.

“WINTER” COLORWORK SOCK

Got the heels done on both socks and working my way down the foot. Loving the self striping yarn I’m using (Lollipop Yarns) although there isn’t enough to finish the foot. I have another ball of leftover sock yarn that I’ll use to finish. I used Natalie Sheldon’s Advent Sock 2019 for the stripe patterns.

HEALTH UPDATE

Hubby and I are both recovered from Covid and back to our normal activities. Well, with the exception of acknowledging our age limitations for some household chores. For the first time we hired someone to power wash our wooden deck and pergola. Hubby tried climbing a ladder to power wash the overhead beams and quickly realized it was no longer a good idea for him. We did do the restaining of the wood ourselves. The person that did the power washing also does grass mowing so we are hiring him to cut the 1/4 mile (400m) of driveway we maintain (it’s a shared driveway so neighbors cut the parts that are by their property). It is very uneven ground and even with a “self propelled” lawn mower, it is getting too much for me. We will still cut the flatter lawn that surrounds our house.

Hope you have a wonderful week of crafting. This is a Ravelry YOP post. A fun group of bloggers that post once a week on our yearly crafting plan. Sticking to the plan is not required. 😉

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2023: Wk of 5/7-13; Hat FO, Ranunculus Progress, and Yarn Box Reveal

RANUNCULUS UPDATE

This is supposed to be a summery tee even though I’m using mohair. I think I’m going to make it very short sleeved to minimize the mohair on my arms. I’ll just do a few rows of ribbed cuff with the collar yarn and then bindoff. The body length will be determined by using up all the yarn. I went up a needle size on the body after I split for the sleeves as I want it to have more ease than my previous Ranunculus.

STUDENT HAT

This has been a fun “fill-in” project for car or “waiting” knitting. I liked this pattern as basic but more interesting than ribbed. I have enough yarn to knit a second with the yarn. I’m going to switch to a colorful rainbowish yarn next just for variety. I will definitely keep a hat on needles for when I need some easy knitting.

SOJOURN SCARF

Had two sessions of social knitting this week so the sojourn scarf was perfect. It was fun to share with fellow knitters the soft yarn while working on an easy to carry and easy to knit project. Scarves are definitely not my favorite project to knit so I’ll be glad when I finish this.

MOTHER’S DAY YARN ACQUISITION

Here’s what was in the Mother’s Day Box I wasn’t able to resist. The good news is that the “trial purchase” worked. It was a good reminder that “mystery” purchases can often be disappointing. Black, grey, and brown is not a yarn I would have purchased. I think I can successfully resist buying another advent calendar when I already have one.

I also received the yarn I ordered to knit some orange and blue themed socks. I’m much happier with this purchase since it wasn’t a mystery. This will go on needles as soon as I finish the Sojourn scarf.

For the mothers and those who mother in the group, I hope you have a relaxing, wonderful day. For those who have suffered loss, I wish you peace. I cannot image what this day is like for my sister-in-law surviving her first Mother’s Day after the death of her son.

Wishing everyone a wonderful week of crafting. This has been a Ravelry Year of Projects post. Bloggers are encouraged to share their fiber plans for the year and then post weekly updates. Sticking to the plan is not required.

2023; Wk of 4/30-5/6; Ranunculus Cast-on and More Yarn

RANUNCULUS CAST-ON

Got to cast-on my next Ranunculus. I definitely love the yarn that I frogged and am using for the body. Think I’ll be happy with the yarn I’m using for the collar, cuffs, and hem. Certainly consistent with the pinks and purples in the body yarn but we will see if I like the slightly darker color versus the lighter body yarn. The body yarn has 5% stellina which gives the sweater a very slight silver sparkle. I think this is going to be another fun top to wear.

OTHER KNITTING UPDATES

Not much else to report on my other knitting projects. I did take a day to rip out the bind-off and last 4 rows of my Promenade Blouse because the stockinette kept curling even after blocking. I reknit the last 4 rows as garter and redid the i-cord bindoff. Now it doesn’t curl and I’m very happy with the sweater. The Sojourn scarf and the student hat got a little attention but not enough to warrant pictures.

IN OTHER NEWS – LIMITS OF AGING

Why do we have to hurt ourselves before recognizing the changes in our capabilities as we age? Hubby sent me to the store to buy 2cu ft bags of potting soil as they are cheaper than buying 2 1cu ft bags. They were so heavy!! Instead of recognizing they were too heavy for me, I draped them over the edge of my cart so I wouldn’t have to lift them out of the cart. That was good but unfortunately the bags weren’t balanced so the cart fell over landing on my foot. Good news, I didn’t broke any bones and ice fixed me up pretty quickly. I was back to normal activities in a day. In the future, I will only buy the smaller bags.

MORE YARN ACQUISION

Good grief. Besides the Mother’s Day Yarn box I ordered last week, I ended up ordering some FCC (Futbol Club Cincinnati) themed sock yarn from Grocery Girls Frankie Grey Fiber this week. While Jodi created the yarn for her NHL Edmonton Oilers hockey team, the orange and blue are also the colors of my local MLS soccer team. I would love to have a pair of handmade socks to go with the team jerseys and jackets I wear when attending games. So I splurged after hearing Jodi talk about the yarn on the Grocery Girl podcast. Sadly, Canadian shipping is slow and costly. On the other hand, I have plenty of projects already on needles so I’m not in a hurry for the yarn to arrive.

You just have to laugh at yourself sometimes. The first two months of the year I managed to not buy yarn. Now it’s three months in a row where I’ve added to my stash with must haves. Might as well buy that advent calendar since I’ve already been “bad” this month. Trilogy yarns just released their advent calendar preorder with a 15% off code. Oh, and I still need that purple mohair!! Happy shopping! Then I’ll be good until the wool festival in September where it is literally my job to support local vendors, right!?

Best wishes to all who are trying to resist adding to their stash. This has been a Ravelry Year of Projects post. Bloggers are encouraged to share their fiber plans for the year and then post weekly updates. Sticking to the plan is not required.

2023: Wk of 4/16-22; WIP Updates

PROMENADE BLOUSE

Oh goodness, I just can’t resist this project so it got most of my knitting attention. The colorful top just makes me smile. Plus I can wear it as soon as I finish it. I’ve separated for the sleeves and I’m working on the body. I clearly did not read the yarn requirements correctly. I will run out of the “confetti yarn”. Fortunately I have enough left to match the body stripes to the sleeve stripes. Also fortunately I have some solid yellow, orange, and blue from an argyle sock project I never finished that I could use for the remaining stripes. They are fingering weight so I’ll have to hold them double. I think the solid color stripes will make a nice finish to the confetti pops of color on the upper portion. If not, I’ll have to reach out to the dyer to see if she plans to dye more. It was on clearance so maybe not. She still has one skein of fingering weight so again I could hold it double. I think the double strands of solid color will be preferable to the double strands of confetti colors. It does fit and blocking will help. I think I will go up a size for the next one since it’s intended for autumn and therefore I will probably wear a shirt like this one under it.

SOJOURN SCARF

I’ve made a little progress on my patternless scarf. It’s a bit wider than I intended but I think it will be fine. You can see I’ve added a YO “lace” row every 20 rows just to break up the very basic purl row pattern. This should be pretty paired with black or brown sweaters that I tend to wear in the fall. Not as motivated to knit this project since I won’t wear it till late fall. But it’s a good “travel” project. I took it to the soccer game last night to knit on while I waited for traffic to clear.

COLORWORK SOCKS

Really didn’t do much. I need to catch the second sock up to the first before starting any new stripes.

ADVENT CALENDARS

Arg!!!! LDSVenus posted about a stitch marker/progress keeper advent calendar. I had been strongly considering one this year. AdoreKnit offers many versions plus 25% off if ordered before 5/15. I could not resist getting cute progress keepers. I did resist the versions with stitch markers since I already have plenty of those. So I will have at least one yarn advent calendar and a progress keeper advent calendar for 2023. I’m really lusting over the Yarn Only version of Southern Skeins advent calendar. I am worried the color palette will be too similar the one I already have for 2023 and I already have too many minis. Resistance is futile, especially when they offer versions that don’t include all the bells and whistles that I don’t want making the price point more reasonable.

Hope you had a great week. This has been a Ravelry Year of Projects post. Bloggers are encouraged to share their fiber plans for the year and then post weekly updates. Sticking to the plan is not required.

2023:Wk of 3/19-25; WIP Updates

BUTTERCUP TEE

I’m very pleased with how this tee is turning out. The fit is going to be great. It is using up a lot of yarn so I may actually need more than I have with me to finish it off. I want it to be a tunic length so it needs to extend past my bottom. Fortunately a have more skeins at home back in Ohio. About 6″ below the armpit, I went up a needle size to provide a little more ease. I actually did wet blocked what I had knit after a few inches just to be sure I couldn’t see a line when I went up a needle size. I plan to decrease stitches as I create the sleeve cuff to create a bit of a puff sleeve. The tee will be a bit thick due to the aran weight yarn. The drape would be better with the DK weight yarn called for but I’m glad I was able to use up some stash yarn.

VIVALDI SPRING SOCKS

I’ve made some progress on my Vivaldi Spring socks. Just a couple more stripes and it will be time to knit the heels in the orange contrast yarn. Looks like I don’t have much yarn to knit the leg even of a shortie socks. Fortunately I have a grey mini with me to “extend” the leg.

FIXATION VANILLA SOCKS

I’ve started the second sock so that I have something to knit on my last few days of walking and knitting. The first sock is almost ready for the heel so it’s time to catch the second sock up.

HEADING HOME

We are down to our last few days in Florida. If I get some of the above projects finished this week I may “have” to cast-on the Sophie scarf for car knitting. But it’s likely I’ll be doing most of the driving. The highways will likely be clogged as many snowbirds go back north on the first of April. The activities at the condo complex pretty much grind to a halt by the mid April since more than half of the residents are snowbirds. I already have some coffee dates set up with some knitting friends once I get back to Ohio. I’m also looking forward to getting to sit with my kitty while I knit. I know my stepson has taken good care of her but I’m looking forward to her curling up beside me on the couch.

Hope you had a good week crafting.

This has been a Ravelry Year of Projects post. Bloggers are encouraged to share their fiber plans for the year and then post weekly updates. Sticking to the plan is not required. 🤣

2023: Wk of 3/12-18; Yarn Store Visit and WIP Updates

TRUNK SHOW MEANS YARN ACQUISION

Some knitters that I meet with weekly while in Naples made a road trip yesterday to visit A Good Yarn, a yarn shop in Sarasota FL for a trunk show of Miss Babs yarns. It was fun to have a “girls trip” to shop for yarn and enjoy lunch together at a French cafe. We got to meet Miss Babs and definitely bought a lot of yarn. I did pretty good on my haul. Only 4 skeins. 3 skeins of mohair to go with yarn already in my stash to make projects I already had in mind (Promenade Blouse, Lace & Fade Boxy, Ranunculus). The “slurge” was a skein of cashmere/silk that I will use to knit the Sophie Scarf.

BUTTERCUP TEE

HahHa. Not surprisingly I didn’t do either thing I thought I would last week with this tee. The neck was indeed too big to just add a few garter rows so I frogged it. I was only 5 days into the project so not a lot of lost time.

Instead of moving to a pattern designed for my yarn I decided to give the Buttercup Tee one more go. This time I reduced the cast-on from 58 stitches to 38 stitches to match the reduction in the lace panel I did last time by eliminating one pattern repeat due to the thick yarn. This means I’m really winging it when it comes to how often to do raglan increases. I’ve measured the desired sleeve width and back/front widths so that I can make increases to get the needed measurements before splitting for sleeves. I do like the yarn and the colorway. (Butter Ball – not sure I like being a Butterball. I think Sweet Corn would be slightly more appealing.) It will be a wonderful summer top if I can figure out the sizing.

SOCKS GOT MINIMAL ATTENTION THIS WEEK

I do love the fall colorway of my Vivaldi Spring socks so I’m tickled I’m ending up with a pair of shorties from it. To prevent one sock syndrome, I force myself to knit both toes, then both feet, followed by both heels, both legs, and finally both cuffs. No finish a sock and start all over again with the second one hoping they match. Not much to see this week so I’m not going to post a picture. Similarly the Fixation socks got a little attention this week but not enough to justify photo.

FINISHING UP

Sadly our friends from Cincinnati just called to say they were headed back to Cininnati after driving all the way to Atlanta yesterday. They were supposed to join us here in Naples, FL for a week but the hubby experienced a medical issue last night. Nothing life threatening but best to go home for medical attention as needed. We head north on the 31st. I’m looking forward to spending an evening with my son and his wife in Gainesville, FL before heading to Charleston, SC to spend an evening with my daughter and her husband. Plus I’m already making plans to connect with knitting friends back in Cincinnati in April.

Hope you have had a good week and have fun things to look forward to in the coming week.

This has been a Ravelry Year of Projects post. Bloggers are encouraged to share their fiber plans for the year and then post weekly updates. Sticking to the plan is not required. 😉

2023: Wk of Feb 19-25; Deschain Update, 37 Years

DESCHAIN SWEATER

The Deschain is proving to be a pretty easy and fast knit. I’ve knit the front and the back for a total of 6 repeats. I’ll be seaming the front and back together this week. I didn’t complete the hems as I plan to pin it together this afternoon so I can try it on before deciding if I should do one more repeat before the hem. I’m using Juniper Farms Zooey which is a DK instead of the called for aran weight yarn. As feared, the back gauge does not match the front gauge so I’m hoping I can seam it without puckers. We will see. The yarn in the picture looks tan but it’s actually a sage green. I made the gauge tighter than the pattern calls for because I wasn’t sure I wanted such on open fabric. Now I’m concerned the fabric is too dense. Oh well. I’ll finish it and see if my daughter likes it this way. If not I can always reknit it, especially since it’s such a fast knit. Or I’ll keep it for me and knit her a different one. Since it’s cotton/linen, I can wear it here in Florida.

COLORWORK SOCKS

I needed a break from the all stockinette knitting of the Deschain back piece and the Vanilla socks so I went back to one of my 2022 carryover WIPS. I finished the last few rows of the ribbed cuff and knit the first stripe. My intent is to make the stripes more “winter” than Christmas so that the socks can be worn all winter. I’m using the Advent 2019 sock pattern. If my daughter doesn’t want them, I’m pretty sure my stepdaughter will enjoy wearing them. They will be too hot for me to wear in Florida.

37 YEARS

Hubby and I “celebrated” our 37th anniversary this week. We celebrated by going to happy hour at a restaurant where I had gotten gift cards for winning the condo cookie exchange back in December. I’m tired of my husband complaining that he could have “made it better and made it for less” on the rare occasion that we go out to eat. With the increase in food prices and labor wages, it would be even worse this year. So I forced him to go out to use up the gift cards. He did make a wonderful chocolate babka, using the America’s Test Kitchen recipe, as our celebration dessert. It was delicious.

Considering our ages when we got married, mainly his, I definitely wasn’t convinced we would make it to this many years. We actually have a 50/50 chance of making it to 50 years based on the longevity calculator. Who knows!?

Wishing everyone a good week, knitting and otherwise.

This is a year of projects (YOP12) update. YOP is a Ravelry Group – make a plan for the year ahead for all your fiber activities, then update your blog each week. Plans can be calendar year (like mine) or mid-year start (like many). YOP started it’s 12th year in July and I’m starting my third year in the group. You can find more detailed information about my projects on my project pages in Ravelry (MaureenHD).  I’ve been knitting for six years.

2022: Wk of 12/11-17; Hubby Sweater Save!! and Cropped Ranunculus FO

HUBBY SWEATER SAVE!!!

Well, I intended to put my hubby’s sweater in time-out but I couldn’t resist trying a few things. So I went ahead and knit the collar. It really helped make the sweater look better!! Then I decided to lengthen the sleeve. I had hubby try it on again with the changes. Good enough. Sleeve could be longer and is definitely tighter than I like. I will try to stretch it more during blocking. “Dry” blocking helped stretch the body so it doesn’t look too tight. He likes it long although I think it’d like it better about 2 stripes shorter. Neither of us are a fan of the excess material at the underarm but it’s livable. (NEVER again bottom-up/cuff-up). This way he has a sweater to wear on the flight home where we are having an artic freeze. The temperature will be well below freezing when we land and again when we leave. I will give him the black undershirt I got him to wear under it before we fly out on Wednesday. He is hiding the second arm because I still need to lengthen that one. Not a great sweater but fine for around the house wear.

MOHAIR RANUNCULUS

This was a quick knit, especially since I didn’t have that much yarn. I think it makes a cute outfit when I combine it with a tank top and leggings. It’s funny how different this one is from my first one. I never would have guessed that going from a US 10 to a US 11 and adding lace weight mohair would increase the gauge so much. But it’s loose and fluffy just like I had imaged. Since I cropped it, I made a garter hem rather than a ribbed hem. I wanted the hem to hang straight vs a ribbed hem that tucks in. Fingers crossed I like the feel of mohair.

ADVENT CALENDAR MINIS

I am enjoying my advent calendars and looking forward to starting a Sea Glass tee come January with the mini set on the left. It has a lot of darker colors which will be perfect paired with the lighter color MC I plan to use. In this week’s Grocery Girls podcast Jodi mentioned a stitch marker advent calendar, Ocean Loops Studio. I think it would be a good idea for next year. Especially since I already purchased a yarn advent calendar to be opened in Advent ’23. Here’s the minis I’ve opened so far. One more week.

Wishing everyone a wonder filled last week of advent and a very Merry Christmas. You will have to let me know if my blog pictures are better. Hubby couldn’t resist buying us new phones for Christmas.

This is a year of projects (YOP12) update. YOP is a Ravelry Group – make a plan for the year ahead for all your fiber activities, then update your blog each week. Plans can be calendar year (like mine) or mid-year start (like many). Following the plan is optional and creates some of the fun of posts.  YOP started it’s 12th year in July and I’m starting my third year in the group. I’ve been knitting for six years.

2022: Wk of 11/13-19; Hubby Sweater Update, Holiday Traditions

HUBBY SWEATER

Making progress on Hubby’s sweater. The sleeves have been joined to the body. Still can’t understand the pattern instructions so I’ll plan to kitchener the sleeve underarm to the body. I’m still hoping to have it finished before we leave for Florida in a week. It’s not too warm of a sweater since it’s a cotton/silk blend (Berroco Summer Silk) so he may be able to wear it on those occasional cool mornings in February. If it doesn’t fit, I’ve already warned him it goes to the long term time out corner as I’m not going to delay working on other projects to reknit this sweater that I now hate. (Fortunately due to knitting stripes and breaking the yarn after every stripe, lengthening the sleeves won’t be hard – just remove the cuff, add stripes and kitchener back onto the sleeve).

A GIRL AND HER WOOL

I’m especially glad I ended up ordering an advent calendar from A Girl And Her Wool this year. She announced this week that after almost 4 years, she is ending her yarn dying and thus her shop. I loved her concept of letting you order exactly how much yarn you wanted versus being forced to buy 100 gr skeins. I could order 60 gr of MC and 10 gr of contrast color to make a pair of socks and not have a lot of yarn leftover. Her business was doing well and that was part of the problem, it was taking over her life as she also had a fulltime job. I’m glad that she walks away knowing she can start-up and run a successful online business.

HOLIDAYS ARE HERE!

In the US, Thanksgiving is an opportunity to celebrate friends and family with food so it’s my favorite holiday. Looking forward to turkey, stuffing, and pumpkin pie with my in-town kids and father. Then it’s Christmas cookie baking on Friday followed by putting up the Christmas decorations on Saturday.

Hope you have a wonderful week.

This is a year of projects (YOP12) update. YOP is a Ravelry Group – make a plan for the year ahead for all your fiber activities, then update your blog each week. Plans can be calendar year (like mine) or mid-year start (like many). Following the plan is optional and creates some of the fun of posts.  YOP started it’s 12th year in July and I’m starting my third year in the group. I’ve been knitting for six years.

2022: Wk of 9/11-17; Sock and Sweater Updates

HUBBY’S SWEATER UPDATE

I’m happy to report that the second time was the charm in not twisting my stitches on this bottom up pullover. Fingers crossed that the waist will not be too tight. The hem is knit with fewer stitches than the body. I figure worst case I’ll rip out the hem and reknit it straight from the body stitches. This is an easy knit now that I’m past twisting the hem so I’m getting lots of practice knitting Continental.

SOCKS UPDATE

What a surprise, I got a lot less knitting done this week at the beach than I thought. I did make a little progress on both my Fixation socks and my Autumn socks. The Fixation socks will now become my car knitting since I’m in no hurry to finish them. I don’t want to get caught again with no knitting in my car. Nothing like sitting for an hour waiting to get the oil changed with nothing to knit.

I’m knitting my Autumn socks Continental style and forgot how much looser my stitches are. The sock is too big!😲 With only 2″ before starting the heel, I’ve decreased the stitch count from 68 to 62 and I’ve added 2×2 ribbing to the bottom side. If it still ends up too sloopy, I’ll have to frog it.

WEDDING WEEK

What a wonderful week long wedding celebration. The weather was perfect. Way too much good food to eat. The bride and her family are happy but exhausted. This is the beach mansion they rented for the week.

Hope you had a wonderful week. I look forward to getting back home for the next two months!!