Sunday, April 26, 2015

Round Two (& Three) FO's

FO photos...

Detail Petite Double Dutch

Petite Double Dutch

My Petite Double Dutch was knit with Isager Alpaca Merino 2 on US size 3 needles.  This yarn is finer than the yarn that I used for my pattern sample and I liked my swatch with the Isager knit on smaller needles.  The finished shawl is approximately 43" long and 9.5" wide.  This was my second Double Dutch.

Another Rosebud

My latest Rosebud was knit with baa ram ewe TitusThis is the yarn that I used for the swatch that I sent to Interweave as a part of my design proposal.  This was my second Rosebud.

(Perhaps you will view this last photo with eyes that are kinder than my own.)  My sister shot this photo during our last meal (a very late lunch) in NYC.  I was wearing my third Paper Lanterns shawlette.

I did make all three from the same yarn and on the same needles.  Blue Moon Fiber Arts owns the original sample.  My sister was gifted with my second one for Christmas, and I finally finished one for me to wear in March.

In January, the rights to this design came back to me.  But as in most cases with third party publishers, I am not allowed to sell the Blue Moon Fiber Arts version of the pattern.  I am currently in the process of writing a version using my own template and with my own photography.  (Mr K took several dozen photos of me wearing the shawl last weekend.)  (I kept thinking that only a fool would use me as a model... but the good news is that I am getting better at photo editing.)

I will let you know when the pattern becomes available.  As always, thanks for reading and happy knitting! 

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

A Spring Fling -- The Weather and The Rest

I was the one to name it a "Spring Fling".  I thought that giving a name to my trip to join my sister while she was in New York for business was part of the fun.  It was still hopelessly cold and snowy in the northeast when we began our plans.  I was certain that it would have to be (at least a little bit) warmer in New York in (early) Spring.

I was right.  It was a little bit warmer, but it was still cold and windy on the days we were there.

Turtle Pond, Central Park

My only photo from our walk through Central Park was of a frozen Turtle Pond.  I had told my sister that I had never spent much time in Central Park and that I would like to walk through it, and we did.  We walked on or near 79th Street and we made a stop at Belvedere Castle which (I learned from the next link) sits atop Vista Rock -- the highest point in Central Park.

From there, we walked to the yarn shop, Knitty City.  That space was smaller than I expected, but packed full of all the yarns you could imagine.  And there were books, and needles, and hooks and buttons, and trinkets, and more customers than I would have expected on a weekday afternoon... but that makes sense, if you think about it... NYC.   

A major highlight of our trip was to see the Broadway musical Kinky Boots.  It was all about "be who you are" and "accept other people for being who they are" and I found it very uplifting.  My sister had previously seen and liked the (not musical) movie.  The Tony award winning score was the solo work of Cyndi Lauper, and we all know that "Girls Just Want to Have Fun", and we did.

Of course we had a couple of fantastic dinners, and we found time to visit a few of the shops at Rockefeller Center.

On our last day, it was a bit warmer, but it rained in the afternoon.  We decided to spend the day at the 9/11 Memorial and Museum.  The memorial fountains are spectacular.  Do you remember my post that included an aerial view?  There is still a lot of construction all around the site.

I thought that everything about the museum was well done.  Though we were in the museum for hours, there was no way we could see and read about everything.  Truthfully, it was incredibly overwhelming emotionally and I am not sure that I could have stayed longer.  Just two photos, because I had some issues with my camera that day.

I am already looking forward to my next trip to New York which will be in May.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

A Spring Fling -- The Art

For the better part of three days during the week that followed the Spring Equinox, I was very lucky to join my sister while she was in New York on a business trip.

On Day 1 we were at the Guggenheim Museum, and I came home with these photos from that beautiful place.

It had been a good number of years since I last visited the "landmark" museum designed by Frank Lloyd Wright.  The work of conceptual artist, On Kawara, was displayed throughout the central, spiraling part of the museum.  I won't try to describe On Kawara -- Silence.  Instead I will quote from the Guggenheim web page:  "Through radically restricted means, On Kawara’s work engages the personal and historical consciousness of place and time."  (That does sum it up very well in just one sentence.)

Day 2 (while my sister did her work thing) I walked to the Museum of Modern Art where I spent the morning trying to see as much as I could see.  It really was a lot!  I took pictures of a small fraction of what I saw.  Before starting to put this post together I realized that I did not know the names of much of what I photographed.  Happily, I did find some names at the MoMA website.

The Olive Trees ~ Vincent van Gogh, 1889

Bridge over the Riou ~ Andre Derain, 1906

The next three shots are from Making Music Modern: Design for Ear and Eye.  This was a bright and colorful exhibit that made me happy.

The medium used in Crowhurst is "gouache on gelatin silver print".  It is an image of "the 'Crowhurst yew,' located on the grounds of a twelfth–century church and said to be over four thousand years old."  The image was rather breathtaking, and I found that "four thousand year" thing kind of mind boggling.

Crowhurst ~ Tacita Dean, 2006

I liked this pairing of two works of conceptual art.  I am sorry that I am not able to give you any names on these.  I do remember enough facts about them to safely say that both involved life, death and mortality.  I don't want to get anything wrong, so it's probably best that I don't try to say more.

The "medium" for the last work, Sallim, is "steel frame, perforated metal plate, caster, aluminum venetian blinds, knitting yarn, acrylic mirror, IV stand, light bulbs, cable, electric fan, timer, garlic, dishes, hot pad, and scent emitter".

Sallim ~ Haegue Yang, 2009

The "knitting yarn" was actually a piece of crocheting.  All of the yarn ends floated gently in the breeze from the fan.

Sallim Detail ~ Haegue Yang, 2009

An interesting piece.  Of course I was intrigued by the yarn.  But the multi-layered meanings of everything put together were a bit beyond me, so I searched online and from this page I learned that "for her sculpture Sallim, Yang reproduces a full-scale model of her Berlin kitchen. Sallim (roughly translated from Korean as “running a household”) considers the noncommercial space of the kitchen as a site of preparation for action and the organization of life."

I did see a lot more, but this is enough for now.  (I need to get back to my kitchen or my knitting because there is work tomorrow.)  I love the way that modern art can give you a lot to think about.

Sunday, April 12, 2015


reentry,  noun
1. an act of reentering.

2. the return from outer space into the earth's atmosphere of an earth-orbiting satellite, spacecraft, rocket, or the like.

Also, re-entry, reentrance, re-entrance
From See

Two Dye Lots
Let us look at this and begin again.

Can you see the line?  It starts near the "y" in the caption and runs at a slight angle up and to the right in the photo.  The color to the right of the line is a bit darker and richer -- the color to the left it is a bit pinker.  These color differences came about because the yarn I used was from two different dye lots.

You know about dye lots, right?  Yarn manufacturers dye their yarns in batches and give each batch a lot number, so that knitters can be sure that the color will be the same (or as close as possible to the same) when they knit anything requiring more than one skein of the same color.  They just need to remember to check the dye lot numbers.

I have know about dye lots since I was a little knitter.

(But this project was different, or so I thought.)

I began this vest more than one year ago.  I wrote a blog post nearly two years ago where I talked about my plan to use this yarn for the vest.

Two Reds (or was it Four?)

The colors are Crimson Red (left) and Garnet Red (right).  Two skeins are Reynolds Lite Lopi (which has been discontinued), and the other two are Ístex Létt-Lopi.  The Lite Lopi (one of each red) was leftover from a sweater that I had made for my daughter.  I purchased the Létt-Lopi (one of each red) because I liked the two reds together and wanted to make myself a vest with them.  I planned to use the Garnet Red on the lower part of the vest and the Crimson red on the top.

From that blog post more than one year ago:

"They are all different dye lots, and in the case of the crimson, they are even two different color numbers.

I don't think that will matter."

(Well, I was wrong.  It did matter.)

Some of my original plan was edited.  At some point, I decided to use a few rows of colorwork at the actual change of color from the Garnet to the Crimson.  They were completed and are on the left in the first photo. 

The dye lot line is a problem for me.  I can see it.  I do not like it.  And something different must replace it.

(I need to decide what to do with this project because I do not have enough "knitting on the needles" right now.  I am as lost as I could be if I were in outer space for a while.*)

(I need to decide how much of this to rip out and what to do next.)
(If you have any ideas, please let me know.)

* True disclosure:  I have NOT been in outer space.  But I have had been lost at times because my day job recently became more demanding.  More than anything else, I need to knit.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

April Fools' Day

I am generally not a snow lover, but I do always say that snow is very pretty on trees in the sunshine.  The first photo was from my back deck this morning.  (The sun was just beginning to rise over the mountain behind.)

The second photo was shot through my front window.  Missing in both photos is the sparkle-in-the-sun thing that was going on out there.  (Like a whole lot of glitter.)

The transience of this beauty was the best thing about it.

This April Fools' Day is very sunny with temperatures around average, and (thankfully) average (now) is (actually) warm enough to melt the three inches of snow that fell here yesterday.

There are a lot of birds outside, but I have not seen any flowers yet.  I will be searching for flowers in the days to come.

I hope that spring has found you!

Friday, March 27, 2015

And Some Days, Not So Much...

  ... not so much matchy matchy of my knitting color and my color wearing.

Last week I bought this

Hibiscus and Zinnia

and a lot of this.

Cactus Flower

I was wearing blue from head to toe.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

It Works Both Ways

Just a quick post to let you know that I am still here.

(Recently,) I resumed work on my Rosebud Hat project right after I finished some knit samples that will one day appear in a book.

This day began as most days do... knitting with my first cup of coffee for as long as I was able.  I knitted the hem in the hat this morning.

After showering, I put on my workday jeans and a long-sleeved steely blue colored tee shirt.  I then carried my selected sweater for the day, my comfy gray (not hand knitted) cashmere cardigan, out to the living room and placed it down next to my knitting while I put on my shoes.

With these items nearby, I had a most pleasant thought... one that is all about my memory and my history and is probably a Colorwork Meditation in itself...

I have long remembered... and I have been know to speak of this memory...  from one day during my very first art course at college...

The professor asked us to select one pastel of any color from our box of pastels.  He then asked everyone to raise their hand who selected a pastel matching the color that they were wearing.  We were all surprised that at least two thirds of the class had raised their hands.  (Including me in green.)

Today I decided it works both ways, when after knitting for an hour in blue and gray, I selected those colors to wear.  (And even though it is a fact that I wear a lot of blue and gray, I had considered a brown sweater before I carried the gray one out to my living room.)

And anyway, you do know that it made me happy to think about it working both ways, right?  Color can make me happy.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

In Pieces

One day last week, I finished knitting all of the pieces for my "Everyday Sweater".  I blocked them in my usual way:  I hand-washed them and laid them out to dry on towels.  You can see that blocking has greatly reduced, but not totally eliminated, the natural tendency of stockinette stitch to curl.  I could flatten the pieces a bit more by steam pressing them, but I do not think it necessary.  Seaming will be next, followed by I-cord bind-off to finish the edges, and finally the insertion of a zipper.  Depending on my time and the winter light, I hope to share some photos.  

The pattern is "Cuirassier's Cardigan" by Emma Welford from the recent Winter 2014 Knitscene magazine.  I am using an old standby kind of a yarn:  Cascade 200 in navy.  This project is an attempt to knit a sweater that I can and really will wear everyday.  Over the years, I have made a great number of sweaters that I have rarely worn.  I would like to have a few that actually fit within my everyday workday wardrobe.  My goal for my next couple of sweaters will be wearability.  Time will tell if I am successful.

Meanwhile, how about a sneak peek of a design that my daughter has requested?

Unfortunately, the first "prototype" for this design has the wrong fit, and requires a complete "do over".  Not all bad, because I am always knitting anyway, and fortunately it is not a very large piece.  The yarns that my daughter selected from my stash include some navy Cascade 220 (I did say it was an old standby) in a different dye lot from my newer navy sweater yarn.

I have one more stack of pieces to show you.

It has been a couple of months since I finished knitting all the pieces for my "Unnamed Henley".  The pattern is "Sapwood" by Amy Herzog available at Twist Collective.  The yarn: Louet Gems Sport Weight.

I had been saving the finishing work on this project for the purpose of teaching finishing classes (at Gosh Yarn It!) but they were canceled (student sign-ups were below the shop's class minimum).  Perhaps they might be rescheduled; but either way, I do plan to create some tutorial posts during the finishing of this one.  The color is lighter and brighter than the navy, and this one involves some buttons and buttonholes.

Please leave a comment if you have any thoughts on these pieces, or on finishing, or on classes that you would like to take.  I would love to hear from you!  Thanks!

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Colorwor Meditation #13

"I fell in love with black, it contained all color. It wasn’t a negation of color. It was an acceptance. Because black encompasses all colors. Black is the most aristocratic color of all.... You can be quiet and it contains the whole thing."        ~ Louise Nevelson


Sky Cathedral/Southern Mountain, Louise Nevelson, 1958


"Women think of all colors except the absence of color.  I have said that black has it all.  White, too.  Their beauty is absolute.  It is perfect harmony."        ~  Coco Channel



“Any customer can have a car painted any color that he wants so long as it is black."   ~  Henry Ford


“I’ve been 40 years discovering that the queen of all colors was black.” — Pierre-Auguste Renoir

Read more at: | Sensational Color
“I’ve been 40 years discovering that the queen of all colors was black.” — Pierre-Auguste Renoir

Read more at: | Sensational Color


"I've been 40 years discovering that the queen of all colors was black."  ~ Pierre-Aguste Renoir


Two Girls in Black, Pierre-Aguste Renoir, 1881


"Black is not a color."   ~  Edouard Manet


"There is something about black.  You feel hidden away in it."   ~  Georgia O'Keeffe


"Black is a real sensation, even if it is produced by the entire absence of light. The sensation of black is distinctly different from the lack of sensations."   

                                                             ~  Hermann von Helmholtz


"Black is the most aristocratic color of all.... You can be quiet and it contains the whole thing."       ~ Louise Nevelson