My current work in progress:

1. Alodia, designed by Moira Engel, knit from Swans Island Natural Colors Merino Worsted in the "Eucalyptus" colorway on U.S. size 7 needles.
2. Myriad stealth projects.

A Little Ragdoll

I got my yarn for my lilac point Ragdoll kitty!

Yarn071915 240x168 A Little Ragdoll

This is Rowan Kidsilk Haze in the White, and Smoke colorways, to be knitted held together with Rowan Baby Merino Silk DK, in the Snowdrop, Dawn, and Rose colorways. My hope was that the Kidsilk Haze would give my kitty a bit of fluffyness.

Here is the resulting kitty:

Kitty071915 220x240 A Little Ragdoll

I think he turned out nicely. I went up a needle size to a 3.25mm since I was using a strand of Kidsilk Haze together with the Baby Merino Silk DK. It worked very nicely!

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Craft Festival

Check this out: Annie’s Craft Festival!

Annie’s is the company that has published many, many booklets of great knitting and crochet patterns and I have reviewed and given away a number of them. The festival is not limited to knitting and crochet, but also includes classes in Beading, Cake Decorating, Cross-Stitch & Embroidery, Floral Arranging, Painting, Paper & Card, Quilting, and Sewing categories. It is being held in Fort Wayne Indiana October 30 — November 1. Looking at the list of instructors, I can see that they have some great knitting teachers lined up, so I can only imagine that the teachers for the other crafts are likely great as well. It would be a great trip for someone who is into several of the crafts represented. All the info you need is on the festival website.

Loki Sez:

Loki071915 240x146 A Little Ragdoll

I don’t know who this impostor is. He doesn’t look a thing like me!

I Can Quit Any Time

I don’t have a problem, honest.

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They are just so danged fun to knit!

All these kitties are knit from Julie Williams’ new “Boy Cat” pattern. She also has a “Girl Cat” pattern and both of them have clothes, but unlike my bunnies, I don’t necessarily think the cats need clothes. But bunnies do. I never said my life was governed by logic.

So, in addition to the tuxedo cat I made last week, I now have a tortie and a Siamese. There will be at least one more: a lilac point Ragdoll.

Cats071515 240x161 I Can Quit Any Time

Bet you can’t guess why.

But I do not yet have the yarn for the Ragdoll, so he is on hold.

Like all of her little animals, the pattern directs you to add the features to the head after stuffing. I have found that for me it is easier to do so before stuffing the head. Same with the body: I attached the arms, legs, and tail before stuffing. I knew pretty much where to attach everything after having made one, so I was good to go!

In other news, I got my yarn for my Camp Loopy August project.

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This is Wollmeise Pure, in the Sabrina and Tambopata colorways. I plan to make Martina Behm’s “Match and Move” wrap. As you can see, I’ve wound my yarn into balls so I’ll be ready to go on August 1st. I weighed each ball because in the pattern, Martina suggests doing so, and using the heavier of the two for Color A because that uses a bit more yarn. My Sabrina (the solid) weights 165 grams, and Tambopata (the variegated) weights 167 grams, so Tambopata will be color A.

The two colors are very closely matched, so the stripes will be, I think, very subtle. I’m very much looking forward to seeing how Match & Move looks in this combination! Actually, I have a pretty good idea, because there is a Match & Move made from these colors on Ravelry, here.

I googled the word “Tambopata,” by the way, and it is apparently the name of a river, a national reserve and a province in Madre de Dios state, southeastern Peru. Seems appropriate for the colorway!

Loki sez:

Loki071515 222x240 I Can Quit Any Time

“What the hell is that thing supposed to be?”

Immediate Gratification

Sometimes I like being able to whip out a small project quickly. While I do love knitting large complex things, I am also a fan of immediate gratification.

So:

TuxedoCat071215 240x218 Immediate Gratification

This little cat is knit from one of Julie Williams’ brilliant new patterns. She just published patterns for a girl cat and a boy cat.

I decided to make a tuxedo cat. I made my kitty as directed but made his feet white as well. In retrospect, it occurs to me that I should have given him a white tummy as well, but he is pretty cute with his black tummy.

I made him a little bow tie: using a 2mm needle, I cast on 7 stitches in fingering weight wool and knit in stockinette stitch until the piece was a bit ore than 2” long. I bound off, then with the knit side outward, I sewed the cast-on edge to the bound-off edge to make a little circle. I flattened the circle with the bound off edge in the center, and used the yarn ends from the cast-on and bind-off to wrap around the middle of the piece, making the “knot” in the middle of the bow tie. I tied the bow tie onto a black hair elastic and slipped it over the kitty’s head, doubling the elastic for a snug but not-too-tight fit around his neck.

Loki checks out the little interloper:

Loki071215 217x240 Immediate Gratification

Lavena

I finished my July project for Camp Loopy the other night. Here it is, hastily laid out on the floor while Loki was looking the other way:

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And here it is, modeled.

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Gotta go. It is time to start the laundry — my little helper is waiting!

Loki0712151 240x160 Immediate Gratification

So Near and Yet So Far

Don’t you hate when this happens?

WIP070815 240x202 So Near and Yet So Far

That’s the end of my Lavena Shawl and that’s how much yarn is left. To finish it off you decrease 1 stitch every 4 rows, so you can see that I am close.

The pattern calls for approximately 560 yards of the main color (although on the Ravelry page it states 590 yards). I purchased 650 yards to be on the safe side. But clearly, not safe enough!

No gauge was given for the pattern, which I find a bit odd. It’s a shawl, but still, it’s nice to know the ballpark gauge. On the pattern the finished dimensions are listed as approximately 24″ high and 79″ wide, while on the Ravelry page the finished dimensions are listed as approximately 39.5” high and 79” wide. That’s kind of a big difference. I measured mine: 26″ high and 78″ wide.

The pattern called for U.S. size 2 and 3 needles, but I went up a needle size because that seemed too tight. I used a size 3 on the plain sections and a size 4 on the mosaic sections and liked the results. And my shawl is within the two sizes listed for the shawl. So the bottom line is that I should have had enough yarn.

I do have some black Kauni in my stash that looks to be a pretty close match, dyelot-wise, so I can finish the shawl. But if you are planning on knitting Lavena, be forewarned — you may need more yarn than the pattern says.

On the whole, the pattern was no problem to follow — just a couple of small errors that are easily overcome by using common sense.

The Loki Report

When Loki has had enough of my and my knitting, he retreats to the top of a dresser for the night:

Loki070815 240x215 So Near and Yet So Far

He sleeps there every night, but will descend once or twice a night to wake me up for snuggles. This is not great for me in my quest to get as much sleep as possible on weeknights given how early I get up in the morning, but it is impossible for me to ignore a warm purring kitty who wants to snuggle. Life is a series of trade-offs, and this is one I am more than willing to make.

By the way, if you stop by here for the photos of Loki, you can get more Loki pix by following me on Instagram.

Three-Day Weekend

First of all, congratulations to Beth, who was chosen as the winner of my review copy of  Warm Days, Cool Knits: Lighter Designs for Every Season by Corrina Ferguson. Beth has been emailed.

It’s Day Three of a three-day weekend here in the U.S. and three-day weekends are really good for knitting progress!Here is my progress on my Camp Loopy July project.

WIP070515 240x135 Three Day Weekend

The colorwork is mosaic knitting, so you are only ever knitting with one color at a time, and slipping the stitches in the second color. Colorwork plus a gradient  yarn translates into big entertainment in knitting for me, hence the good progress!

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My little helper is pretty tired today, but he is sticking close by!

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