Sunday, November 02, 2008


Remember me?

This is the final lap of Mike's Christmas sweater (2003-2008) The sleeves are slowly approaching their final destination. I will become invigorated( read:manic!) once I've attached the sleeves to shoulders and can proceed to seaming. once done, I'll flawlessly finish knitting and sewing on the button and buttonhole bands. In time for Christmas. This year. Oh. the. peace.

As such, I've been keeping a rather low blog profile since my last post in August due to living the busy Mrs. B lifestyle. Family-home-nursing-knitting and teaching knitting. Not to mention church knitting on Tuesday nights and meeting up with the # Amigas on Wednesday nights at Kraemer's yarn Shop. Have added a few more Amigas to our little knitting group-Roberta, Eileen, Ayn, and Mary Ellen. We'll be at Stitches East, Baltimore on Friday/Saturday, so if you, Gentle Reader, have been reading this blog I'd love to meetcha!!!

Here are some diversions over the past several weeks-

While I was conducting my latest and never ending archaeological dig in my overgrown Yarn Room I unearthed this UFO. Jean and I date it waaaaaay back from the time Stitches East was held at King Of Prussia. The question remains, not "why did she buy it"? but "will she wear it when it's completed"?

Finishing up my 2 toe up at same time feather and fan socks. Desperate to finish them as there's so much sock yarn begging to be knit! Anyone interested in this pattern just let me know and I'll post it. The heels get knit lastly and separately. The yarn is Tofutie.

Another pair of mittens for our Church knitting group.

The stitch pattern is knit one row, and the next row is knit 1, purl 1 , repeating these 2 rows for pattern.

The yarn, donated, is Mary Maxin "Cloud Spun Chunky". I've knit them both cuff down at the same time on a 40 inch circ, using EZ"s 36 stitch mitten pattern from her books. Easily memorized pattern, even for this post meno girl! I've started a hat with a third ball, and am hoping I
don't run out!
Rhine Girls!
Arriving at the Duchess County fairgrounds caffeinated and ready to yarn shop are Eileen, Jeanie and Nan. It was cold and windy, but we didn't let that interfere with our fun! Best part was our early lunch at Artichoke French!!! Superb!

I'm doing the 3 ball scarf version plus I think I've got 5 balls of Jojoland somewhere to make the shawl. Pattern purchased at Maryland Sheep & Wool 2008.

Blue Moon yarn sold at The Fold. Gems. Love STR, despite THAT very rude woman that works for the vendor. Watch out that she doesn't charge you sales tax on your yarn!

I just liked this yarn, home dyed by someone very talented with color. I see a slipped stitch scarf in my future....

Brooks Farm silk and merino blend for a shawl. Very helpful vendor in color selection.

Wool Room sold lots of books at 50 % off! I bought ....a few.
Now need to find room....

I just have to make this hat!!!! Want to up size it too!
Resting up for Stitches! Have fun if you're going!!!

Tuesday, September 09, 2008


May thanks to all of you who responded with kind words for my little dish cloth experiment. As mentioned in my previous post, wondering "what if?" resulted in a variation on the beloved Ballband dishcloth which resembles rows of little pumpkins. Here is the pattern for everyone to enjoy, hopefully, without any glitches! Do let me know if there are any problems with the pattern. I'd love to see any one's knitted version of it, so send me a photo, and I'll post it!

*** Inspired by the Ballband Textured Dishcloth Pattern***

Materials: 1 ball each Peaches and Cream Sunflower, Orange, and Gold cotton yarn. This pattern evolved during my knitting mission to use up these colors leftover from previous dishcloths. I was in an Autumn state of mind at the time. You, of course, may use whatever colors you have on hand!

Needles: size 7

Important! Remember to twist/ carry your different colored yarns along the side at the beginning of each row!

With (A) Sunflower, CO 35 stitches.
Row 1-knit.
Row 2-purl.

Add on (B) Orange-
Row 3- *k5, Slip 1, *repeat to last 5 stitches, k5.
Row 4- *K 2, p1, k2, Yarn forward, Slip 1, Yarn Back * repeat to last 5 stitches, ending k2, p1, k2.
Row 5- *p2, k1, p2, Yarn back, Slip 1, Yarn forward, *repeat to last 5 stitches, ending, p2, k1, p2.
Row 6- repeat Row 4.

Row 7- With (A), k across.
Row 8- With (A), p across.

Row 9- With (B), k 2, *slip 1, k5, *repeat to last 3 stitches, slip 1, k2.
Row 10- K2, * YF, slip 1, YB, k2, p 1, k2, * repeat to last 3 stitches, YF, slip 1, YB, k2.
Row 11-P2, *YB, slip 1, YF, p2, k1, p2, *repeat to last 3 stitches, YB, slip 1, YF, p2.
Row 12. Repeat Row 10.

Repeat Rows 1 thru 12 for desired length, changing to color (C) Gold and eliminating color (B) Orange whenever you wish. End pattern by knitting with color (A) rows 1 and 2. Bind off. Single crochet a row along the sides if you wish a more finished look.

Happy knitting!

Friday, August 29, 2008


Sadly, the summer is winding down. I had gathered my dishcloth leftovers together last week and felt a bit overwhelmed at that time with just how much bits and pieces are laying around in little balls of color in my yarn room. Usually I end up knitting my standby Ballband cloth with the the odd balls, but this time I wondered "what if?" and discovered by altering a few stitches and rows I could achieve a ridge effect in each segment that resembled, I think, tiny pumpkins. I haven't seen anything like this before, so I don't think I infringed on any one's copyright. Amazing what you can end up with when you fiddle around with your needles and scrap yarn. Just in time for the fall!
I jotted down the stitch pattern as I knitted the cloth. Leave a message in "comments" to let me know what you think, Gentle Knitter, and if there's enough interest I'll post the pattern.

Speaking of dishcloth, I seem to have knitted a few since my last post.

Each one of these were knit from leftover cotton and were gifted to friends as "thank-yous."

Calling this one "Chicken Scratch".

Half a ball of Sugar n Cream makes a great "Grandma's Favorite!"

Truly a "Scrappy Little Cloth"!

A heart pendant? Key fob? Luggage tag?

Not much down time before another is on the needles! Care to guess which pattern it is?

A baby bib knit for Eileen, a Grammy once again! I used Bib'O Love as a base and played around with the stitch pattern until I got a look I liked. Works nice for a baby boy, I think...

Knitting for my cause....
I decided to focus on knitting primarily mittens for our holiday community project, while some of the ladies in our group are knitting scarves and hats. Whereas knitting mittens for kids moves along in a snap, it takes a bit more time investment to knit mittens sized for a man's hand. Since I hate knitting that second sock, the same ire applies to knitting the second mitten. I knit both pairs cuff down on one long circular needle. Bless you, Magic Loop! The green mittens were based on Ann Budd's Hand Knit Patterns book, while the gray ones were knit according to Elizabeth Zimmerman's 36 stitch pattern. Has an afterthought type thumb, which I prefer over the tapered thumb. I need to knit several pairs more by October.

Debbie Bliss baby hat pattern from "Simply Baby" knit flat, in garter stitch, with Bernat " Jacquard" yarn. Makes it's own pattern. Comes in an assortment of different colors.
Again, same yarn knitted in a basic baby beanie pattern. Notice the nice color design you get with this yarn. The top is finished with a goofy little butterfly.

This is our baby fit model, Knitasha, that our group uses to display the knitwear we donate. She gets a different outfit each week.
Here's a small portion of our Knitting Ministry's output. Getting ready to donate to the local pregnancy center, with the hope that our knitting will do some good for some family.

Hold onto to summer as long as you caaaaaaaaaaaaaan! Apologies to John Cougar.
Happy knitting!

Monday, July 21, 2008


Well, Gentle Knitter, it's high time I blog a bit about what I've been up to since my last post! Enjoying the summer, swimming, family day trips to the Jersey shore and Knoebels, lazing about, and of course, knitting several projects all at once. Thankfully, I was able to complete a few. No, I'm NOT working on Mike's wool sweater at this time! Not even inside with the central air. Those never-ending sleeves have totally done me in for now. My sweater sabbatical will end once September arrives.

The further adventures of a very wet Peep....
As you recall last month, Peep needed some help surviving his first few days out of his nest. His doting parents, the Cardinals, were constantly about our property providing him guidance. I'd hear them in the trees around our property and soon became familiar with their chirping. One day I happened to be walking past the arborvitaes at the deep end of our pool when I witnessed Peep testing his wings. The poor baby fell into the pool! Quickly, I scooped him up in my hand and placed him in the shaded bird bath under our pine trees. Soon after, Mom and Dad were right at his side scolding him. My son said it all. "Mom, Peep sure is a lot of trouble for one little bird"! Happily, he seems to have survived his baby stage and can be seen and heard about our yard these days with his parents. My theory is, since he no way resembles those cardinals, that he was a misplaced cowbird that luckily ended up in the care of surrogates. What do you think?

The Three Amigas enjoy lunch at Balasia, to celebrate Jeanie's' ** birthday. Delicious vegan/ Asian cuisine, and that's coming from a dyed in the wool meat lover!

As for me, I've been on a health improvement regime since April. I've been successfully reducing my weight and increasing my overall stamina through a medically supervised calorie restricted program. Today I am almost 40 pounds lighter! It's YMCA for me 3 times a week now. Feeling terrific too!

In a word...Knit-therapy:

My summer garden survivors- what ground hogs and bunnies don't like to nosh!

Until the blogging bug strikes again, may you have time to sit and knit in a shady place!

Thursday, June 05, 2008


This is the time of year when I love sitting on my back porch,enjoying the scent of
the blooming roses as I knit myself into a state of backyard bliss.

But, my backyard seems to have turned into an unofficial sanctuary for Mother Nature's misplaced and down-trodden!

"Are you my Mother"?

Several Saturdays ago, my family and I spent a good portion of the day worrying about the futures of this family of kittens who were using our partially covered basement window well as refuge. Thankfully the SPCA was able to send Trapper Ron to gather up the Mom cat and her babies! We've already decided that we're adopting one of the litter once they're old enough to be spayed.

So today, anticipating a nice, peaceful morning of back porch knitting I was, instead, needed to assist, yet again, in reuniting our resident Cardinal Family. Having found a young cardinal on the ground last evening, scooped it up and placed it in the bushes within mom and dad's reach. Not the end of that saga!

" Are you my Mother"?

Hearing a racket in the rose bushes and seeing Mom and Dad Cardinal frantically calling and searching for their young bird, I located him and placed him off the ground. meanwhile, the parents were busy fending off a Blue Jay who'd been curiously hanging about in our trees, as well as a particularly screechy squirrel!

Meet "Peep".

I don't know what it is with this family? You'd think these birds would keep better track of their wandering baby. So, wanting to be of some help, I phoned our Aunt Kathy, who is THE world travelling Birder, for some advice.

"Where's that kid of mine"?
Aunt Kath gave some good tips on how to deal with this situation, so it was agreed that Peep would have a better chance of surviving and being found by Mom and Dad if he was placed among the herbs in my whiskey barrel. Notice Dad is getting warmer as he continues his search.

" MOM! I'm over here"!

Finally, the parents spied their baby. I was relieved, but still concerned because Peep can't seem to fly up to them!

"Gimme shelter"!

So, since it looks as though Peep is going to be with us until he can "spread his tiny wings and fly away" ( apologies to Ann Murray) I decided I needed to provide some sort of temporary housing for him as his family continues to teach him the basics of being a bird.

"It not Trump Plaza, but to me it's home"!

We all need watching over sometimes.

Knitting related:

Warmer weather means it's officially dishcloth knitting season! This is my version of the fun to knit Squidge, knit with Peaches and Cream Peppercorn Ombre. Thanks Sasha for a terrific pattern!

Finally got around to trimming the knotted yarn tails off of "Whiskers".

When I'm not knitting the Never-ending pair of sleeves belonging to mike's Never-ending Sweater I knit a mitered square for the Mandarin Jacket. The lure of Koigu is compelling! So much joy from a 2 3/4 square!
I continue my love affair with viewing British tellie and knitting books courtesy of my local library.

Mi Amiga, Nan, recently celebrated a birthday, and had asked me a while back for some dishcloths in colors to match her kitchen.

Thanks heavens for Peaches and Cream cotton. Yes. The one on the right is a crocheted cloth.
Just a few more for a set of 6 cloths. I also knit 2 smaller versions and will cover with material/ flannel to create a pair of hot pads/ pot holders to complete the gift.
More birthdays, and baby showers in the coming months. More knitting to be done!

Until next time Gentle Knitter, happy knitting!