Do You Swapless Swap!

I have a love of all things mini skein. I mean I have not one but two scrap blankets on the go. My Memory blanket which has been around since 2016 and my Northeasterly that I started in February. I quickly understood that I can’t knit fast enough with two small children to generate enough scraps to feed my blankets. And that when I discovered swapless swaps on Ravelry!

I don’t have to make the time to dig up a reciprocal package. I just pay my money and a bag of neatly wound mini skeins from a fabulous dyer shows up at my door. I’m currently stalking all the swaps by YarnMatrix aka RoMillet on Ravelry. I have to limit myself and not go crazy. But I just had to jump on the Leading Man Fiber Arts swap….I mean look at those colors!!

Do you swapless swap?

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Knitting Al Fresco

So today’s knitting photo is also courtesy of Easter weekend. My parents have a gorgeous deck on the front of their house. It overlooks a football field (named after my father) and thicket of trees that are just waking up for spring!

I managed to knit a good three inches of foot during our car trip to my parents. And the brisk Kansas breeze and some fresh air really did my soul good while the grandparents chased the babies. The only bummer is that I found a tick crawling on me as they are THICK this year. Ah….country living!

Happy Knitting!!

Close But Not Quite Right

I went stashdiving in my yarn and sadly did not come up with good white/tonal solutions for the sixth color of my Mini Solutions Scarf. On the right is the solid Cascade sock in white. And on the left is some Hue Loco Opal Sock in Cherry Blossum. They both are lovely but just not quite right.

The Opal Sock is nice tonal creamy white but has some subtle pinks and greens mixed in. Not to mention it is 50/50 silk merino and has a lovely sheen to it. That silk will stick out like a sore thumb against the more matte wool of my gradient set. Sigh…back to the drawing board.

I think I need to cull my stash for grey options again….

Happy knitting!!

(Re) Cast On: Mini Solutions Scarf

Next up on my breast pumping/lunch project rotation is my Mini Solutions Scarf. You can remember here that I misread the pattern and had to rip out the whole Christmas Eve cast on progress. So this past week I decided to get back in the saddle.

This little wedge is one 45 minute lunch worth’s of progress. And its WAAAY better looking than my first attempt. And how cute is this subtlety tonal yarn?? Or is variegated? I really stink at deciphering….nonetheless its pretty!

Now I’m cruising through all soothing garter stitch until I run out the first mini ball of yarn. This super tired working momma sure loves her some garter stitch. It keeps my hands busy and my brain pleasantly calm.

Happy Knitting!!

Continued Blanket Obsession

I’ve managed to add eight more squares to my scrap memory blanket over the past few weeks. This has been my reward knitting and mood boost knitting. I am making progress on my WIPs and for each milestone I add a square as a reward.

I’m almost wide enough to cover the top of a full sized bed! Though I have a long way to go in length. But I’m in no rush for this to be done. This project is all about the process for sure!

Happy Knitting!!

FO Friday: Helping Hippos Vanilla Socks

My Helping Hippo Vanilla Socks have reached FO status just as I was literally racing a waking baby PB. They are speckled and tall and glorious! And this is my first FO in like….awhile. It feels nice.

Two toe up vanilla socks worked with 68 stitches with a gusset heel. I used just under 81 grams of yarn which leaves just the right amount of yarn left for repairs and putting some scraps in my blanket. I used US 1.5 needles so my fabric isn’t the densest ever. But I think it should hold up just fine.

One side has a little more “grey area” or blank areas without speckles. But come on, this is hand dyed yarn and that’s just pretty darn awesome. The fit is also pretty good. Admittedly they are VERY snug up around my lower calves. But as hand knit socks are want to do….they will stretch with wear and maybe this pair will then be able to stand up all day long!?

I did notice one small problem. In my haste to beat the clock also known as baby nap time…I was just eyeballing sock two against sock one and I shorted the second sock by like 1/3 of a inch. See above, sigh. But you know what? You can’t tell when they are on my feet and if anyone really gets that close to my feet to investigate….well they just might get a little nudge from said foot. I have a finished pair of socks to keep my footsies toasty in the Kansas winter. That’s a win in my book!

Happy Knitting!!

Preparation

I have been itching to work on my memory sock yarn blanket. And it’s been pulling all of my knitting focus. But close on its heels is my Northeasterly blanket. I have scraps, needles, pattern and my coned yarn to hold doubled all kitted up in a bag. And after a helpful comment on this blog about coned yarn….I decided to wind off a skein of the white yarn and wash it.

This being for two reasons, one to wash off the spinning grease that is used to manufacture coned yarn and two to see if the yarn blooms and shrinks up. I wouldn’t want wonky fabric after spending so much time knitting a blanket for Pete’s sake! So I stole some quiet time while PB was napping and while hubby and Jellybean were out building a snowman last weekend. I had yarn and a podcast….it was heaven!

I wound off yarn until I felt like I had a decent amount and tied off a skein. Don’t mind the dog hair, it’s just considered extra fiber content in this house. (Dex is blowing his coat yet again and I’m now vacuuming almost daily and still can’t keep up!)

The skein has since had a bath and is drying (slowing) in the laundry room. When sufficiently dry I will wind it into a cake to be ready for blanket knitting! Jellybean seemed keen to work my yarn swift and sad I finished my skein without him. So as a mommy and me project we might make a second skein to wash one of these evenings. We will see if his interest abides ninja figures and magnetic tile building.

Happy Knitting!!

Winter Woolfest 2019

The Christmas season is over and it’s back to real life. And that real life has involved a lot of germs and coughing around here. So I made sure to take some time away from nursemaid duties and re-charge my batteries a bit. I made a trip over to Wamego, KS for Winter Woolfest 2019!

First I’ll flash all the goodies I found with my Christmas cash. I focused my monies on independent dyers and especially those I haven’t seen before. I grabbed a Little Lamb children’s book with pattern from Melissa Dallke. And four 20 gram mini skeins from her Acorn Willow yarn line for my scrappy blankets. Then I snagged a speckled DK yarn from Leon Alexander in glorious shades of purple. Next up is a dark grey and rainbow-y skein of sock yarn from the Wichita Woolery. It’s called Prism Break and it should micro stripe if I get the gauge right. Finally I finished up at a LYS booth that had several indie dyers. I gravitated to the speckles again. I picked up some Super Sock 4ply from Twisted Owl Fiber Studio in the Razz-ma-tazz color. I listen to their podcast, the Worsted Knitting Podcast when the occasionally drop episode and it’s hilarious. And lastly I picked up some Pebble Sock from Black Trillium Fibers in the Happy Fun Times color. I didn’t go overboard and I was very pleased with my purchases.

It was a beautiful sunny and weirdly warm January day here in Kansas. The attendees were slightly sweltering in their knitwear this year!

This year’s theme was Classic Rock N Roll. It wasn’t quite as cool as last year’s female super hero theme but still adorable.

And this festival has really grown. This place was PACKED by 11 am after the doors opened at 10 am. It was honestly hard to move around and get into most of the booths. This kinda triggers some anxiety in me and was my least favorite part.

P.S. This Wamego is kind of Wizard of Oz themed because they have the Wizard of Oz museum. And the whole town has kind of rolled with it. They have a tulip themed Toto that made me smile!

Happy Knitting!!

Planning Northeasterly

I have gone completely bananas. There is just no other explanation for what I did. I went and lost what little I had left of a brain and ordered a cone of yarn….A CONE! It’s a million miles of fingering weight un-dyed yarn. All because I needed to start another scrap blanket.

I have been seeing and hearing about Northeasterly by Melissa Alexander-Loomis all over blogs and vlogs and I couldn’t stand it anymore. I almost started right off with my scraps from my mitered square memory blanket. But the pattern is written for DK and Fingering. You can achieve DK weight by holding two fingering weight yarns together. And my brain went “Oh…let’s do a marl!” and off I went to find some white un-dyed yarn. I snagged a cone of Franklin’s Natural sock yarn from Webs that was on sale so that I can hold doubled with my scraps. I will get a lovely marled yarn look and make all the crazy scraps look a little more cohesive.

When will I have time to start this? Who knows! But I have the yarn kitted up in a project bag with the pattern. I’m hoping to dig out some US 5 needs on the shortest cord I can find in my stash. I really don’t want to work on straight needles or managed a bunch of extra cord for not that many stitches. Maybe this will make a great new start for the 2019 new year?

Happy Knitting!!

Cast On: Helping Hippos Vanilla Socks

My sock needles have been telling me that they feel very cold lately. Other than the backup pair of socks in my desk that haven’t seen the light of day in ages….I don’t have any socks on the go. This is very abnormal for me.

So I decided to pull some special yarn from my stash. It’s a Lolodidit hippo colorway….Helping Hippos (that she made for hurricane relief). It’s a ton of many many colored speckles and the perfect antidote to the grey of winter coming. I split the hank into two equal 50 gram skeins to make a pair of socks.

These are my own sock recipe of a toe-up 68 stitch vanilla sock with a gusset heel. I am knitting these on US 1.5 nine inch circular needles. I managed to get the first toe started!

Happy Knitting!!