Katherine the Great
I like to think of myself as a storyteller. Mostly I tell stories about knitting.

Friday night, I was happily knitting on my Curl when the movie ended and I hopped up to put my knitting away instead of moving normally like most adults. My favorite wooden cable needle left its perch behind my ear, went flying and i heard it hit the tile floor. We had company over, so the four of us scoured the room and it was nowhere to be found. Our friends departed and I spent the next 45 minutes turning the area upside down. Maybe I’d misplaced it sooner than I thought so I looked back at the knitting. No such luck as I had used the needle 10 seconds prior to it going rogue. Now, I have other cable needles, but having one vanish into thin air was making me more than a little crazy. In the end, I gave up and went to bed.

Saturday morning, before I rolled out of bed, I prayed to find my cable needle before I went completely mad. I’m not an every Sunday churchgoer (I normally attend around election time), but I absolutely believe in God and the power of prayer.

While you are obviously welcome to believe as you wish, what follows are facts. A few minutes later, i went in the other room and thought, I should look at this from another angle. So, I moved the couch (and vacuumed because let’s be honest, it needed it. If nothing else, at least my house would be cleaner after this ordeal), then reclined on the floor and looked up with a flashlight under the chair I’d been sitting in. There, in an almost hidden dark cavity within the chair peaked out the tiniest end of my cable needle! I got some tweezers and tried to get it out Operation style. Almost! Nope, i dropped it even further into the cavity and it was no longer visible. Oh well. At least I know where it is and a two year old Cheeto is now in the trash.

Enter The Husband. I opened with, “Guess what? I found my needle!!! but it’s in the chair and it seems like it would be a big pain to take it apart and get it out. (i’m eyeing the bolts of the chair.) It’s only a $4 needle.” Now, there are many things to love about The Husband; my favorite is that when I say that something is impossible or difficult, he cracks a small smile and like Disney magic, it’s done. I was hoping against hope that he was going to deliver once again and hand me back my tiny wooden needle, but it really did seem like 8 bolts, grease and running the risk of breaking the chair, so I was nearing the end of my hopeline when he responded, “I put the chair together. I’m pretty sure I can get that out. It’s just two screws.” As he dropped the needle in my hand 10 minutes later, he said, “I just can’t believe you saw it in there.” Yes, that was the hard part.

Now that my cable needle is safely back in its project bag pocket, let’s admire the socks I recently finished!

Pattern: Ensnared by Hunter Hammersen
Yarn: Meadowcroft Dyeworks Rockshelter Sock
Colorway: Guatemalanness
Needles: 2.25mm DPN’s
Purchased from Quixotic Fibers at DFW Fiber Fest


And speaking of The Husband’s handiwork, he created a subscription option if you’re interested!


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I find myself looking inward just now. Hot summer days have me slowing down and focusing on what I want out of life. What’s important to me? Am I saying yes based on my priorities or someone else’s?

Any kind of introspection leads back to knitting. Who am I kidding? Nearly everything I think about circles back to wool and needles. Reflecting back on my Karma Sutra socks, I remember starting them to practice lever knitting. I wanted to knit faster. I worked on the new technique for awhile, but never really quite got it. Recently, I’ve been thinking about giving it another shot. This time, I’m motivated by ergonomics rather than speed. I’d like to be knitting brightly colored socks as I while away a hot summer day decades from now. Whether this new motivation will bring success in my quest remains to be seen.

“Pattern”: CO 64
k1,p1 ribbing for cuff
left cross (1st over 1 st = 2 total), k1, p1 around for 1 round
k3,p1 ribbing for leg.
Sweet Tomato Heel by Cat Bordhi in contrast yarn (slightly modified so the contrast yarn only went across the top of the foot for 6 rows)
k3,p1 for the top half of the foot.
*I did something crazy on the top of sock 2 and had to drop 2 stitches from the toes all the way back to the heel to turn them into purls for the ribbing.
Verdict: I’m glad these socks are pretty because they were a little bit more of a pain in the arse than I planned. The fit of the Sweet Tomato Heel is acceptable, however I prefer to knit a heel flap.
Yarn: Must Stash Yarn & Fiber Spiffy Sock
Colorway: Kama Sutra
Needles: 2.25mm Karbonz (first time trying these – they are not my favorites because the join is not perfectly smooth)


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Four Score and Seven Years ago, The Husband and I were watching Wedding Daze starring Jason Biggs and Isla Fisher. During a scene featuring Isla in a cozy green seater, the man that rarely admires knitwear said, “That’s a nice sweater.” So, we rewound, I got a good look at it and said, “I could totally knit that. It’s a little plain so I’d want some cables or something.” a pause and I added with a smile, “You do realize the sweater will not turn me into Isla Fisher, yes?” He responded with a laughing, “Yes.”


I selected several less boring shawl neck sweater patterns and The Husband voted for his favorite. We had a winner, Dark and Stormy by Thea Colman. I immediately started yarn shopping and discovered Valley Yarns Northampton. I wasn’t sure which green I liked best, so The Husband picked Dark Green Heather. I wasn’t 100% sure of the shade; online it looked like it had a bit of an orange haze, but when it arrived in the mail, I dug it. The Husband’s most convincing argument was that he looks at me more frequently than I look at me, so he is a better judge of what color will look good on me. He wasn’t wrong.

I knit a gauge, washed it (It’s like I don’t even know who I am anymore.) and cast on. It was too tight. So, I cast on again, knit a few rows, and stopped. To give you an idea of my headspace, I was a little gun-shy. After knitting my Owls sweater and not loving the fit – the cast on edge is too tight and it’s just a little too form fitting for my liking. So, I sat on this barely started sweater for a year.

Finally, the Iknitarod gave me the motivation I needed. I resolved that the worst that could happen is I end up with 6 balls of yarn. Ok, the WORST thing that could happen is that I end up crying on a pile of sweater bits with scissors in hand, but that’s probably not how this will go down. probably.

The odds of me ending up with 6 balls of yarn increased when a week into the sweater, i read a comment on ravelry, “This is not a great pattern for your first cardigan.” Um….. I kept going. As long as I read the pattern and trusted Thea and the 1500+ knitters that have gone before me, things seemed to go according to plan.

I made mine a little roomier than designed because I was looking for a cozy house sweater. The only issue I had was one arm being slightly longer than the other prior to blocking. Analysis has revealed that switching from magic loop to DPN’s halfway down the first sleeve will lead to a change in gauge. This did, in fact, block right out.

Pattern: Dark and Stormy by Thea Colman (I will absolutely be knitting another Thea pattern.)
Needles: Addi Clicks – size US 7
Yarn: Valley Yarns Northampton
Colorway: Dark Green Heather
Size: 38
Yarn Used: 529g
Mods:
Cast on 6 for underarms (I’ve got biceps like a Viking shieldmaiden and don’t like tight sleeves.)
.
Picked up 8 to start sleeves to avoid holes.
Knit a round.
Decreased 2 stitches
Knit a round.
Decreased 2 stitches
then followed pattern.
My sleeves ended up just a tad long, and i like it.

I spent an entire Saturday night looking at buttons online and settled on these 1 inch beauties.

Overall: This was quite the enjoyable knit and I LOVE my sweater! Beautiful readers, I may be a sweater knitter after all.


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