When I last wrote, we’d just placed our 7th foster dog in the home of Miss Butterfly’s father. The very next day we left on a road trip. We drove to PA to visit my parents, both of whom are vaccinated. (I am also vaccinated.) We spent 4 days with them, then turned around and drove one of my parents’ cars back, as they had so kindly given it to Miss Butterfly. Fury dog went with us and really enjoyed the trip. We did too! It was good to be able to travel safely and see my parents as it was going on two years since I saw them last.
Upon our return, our state opened vaccinations for ages 16 and up, so the rest of my family promptly got vaccinated and we are so joyful to report that in a few weeks, after dose 2, we’ll be a fully vaccinated family!
We’ve been waiting on our next foster dog who arrives this evening so there will likely be some photo opportunities and a blog post about that. Foster dog time is always a busy time, and this little gal is younger than we usually choose so I know we’ll be extra busy. But I look forward to the chaos a foster brings. I am hoping we will find her a perfect home as soon as possible!
I have not been knitting at all really, but I have done a fair amount of spinning. A project I’ve worked on for months now is some singles on my support spindles from fiber Miss Marja created for me. I finally finished the singles and got the yarn plied. I did a 2 ply laceweight yarn and I ended up with over 1500 yards of yarn!
The skein is massive and the color absolutely gorgeous. It’ll just go into stash until I begin to knit again.
In my other spare time, I’ve been trying to gather the items we will need for a white water rafting wilderness trip this summer. Since camping far away from our car and civilization isn’t something we do very often, there are a few items we need to pick up to bring along. The trip is months off still, but there’s nothing that would stress me more than trying to find those items in the correct sizes at the very last minute.
So, that’s a bit of an update from us, how are you doing? How is the vaccine roll out in your state? It’ll be a beautiful day when we finally are able to get this pandemic set behind us.
I’ve been working on a new project, the Cozy Corner shawl. I decided that since the one project in particular that I really was inspired to knit last year was a Stephen West project, I should take a look at what else I could knit out of his pattern library. Cozy Corner really struck me as one that would hold my attention.
I am using a natural grey handspun yarn I made out of a fleece I processed paired with handspun that Miss Marja created (so far.) I am just kind of adding in color as I see fit, not being particular about color placement and just kind of knitting until I run out of a particular color. If I run out of the colorful yarns I am sure I’ll have others in my stash I can bring in.
It does indeed hold my attention so I am glad I chose it. And it is possible I already know what my next project will be as well, I am appreciating the botanique stole and if I can find appropriate handspun yarns in my stash, I think I’ll knit it.
Our foster dog did indeed find her home, she will be going there permanently on Tuesday evening. In the meantime we are really enjoying having her, mostly because she’s just such an easy dog. In other dog news, our Fury dog has been in advanced flyball class and today she ran the full course a few times, I was so impressed!
That’s it from here, it’s been a very busy weekend but also pretty lovely since the weather is pleasant!
I finished up my striped baktus scarf recently. I actually think if I make this again I’ll elongate it instead of making it this much of a triangle. And I probably will make this again, it’s a pleasant knit.
I used handspun yarn for this, grey and yellow, but the grey had some yellow in it. So while it’s striped, the striping is a little bit vague in certain areas. I kind of love that! I ran out of grey yarn, so one end fully yellow but I don’t think it’s too noticeable.
In other news, our new foster dog arrived.
She has winged eyeliner! She’s super cute and sweet and absolutely the most laid back dog we’ve ever fostered. She’s too easy. Fully potty trained with absolutely no adjustment accidents, loves to chill and nap, is not a morning dog and would prefer to stay warm and cozy in bed, just super easy all the way around. She is finishing up her last few days of kennel rest from heartworm treatment and I haven’t had to kennel her since she’s perfectly happy to laze around the house without the kennel. Naturally, because she’s so easy, she’ll be meeting her potential new home less than a week after she arrived to us.
This went so fast that it may be quite some time before we get another foster dog! I imagined having her through the bulk of March and then getting the next in April, but she’ll likely be gone so fast that we’ll have a pretty long break between fosters this time. That’s ok, a quick turn around means she gets to land in her forever home as fast as possible and that’s a good thing!
That’s all for today, but I do have a new project on the needles I should try to get posted shortly!
Since I managed to clear my queue for finished knitted objects, I had to cast on something new. I ended up going with a good ol’ baktus scarf. Striped. I forgot how easy and pleasant it is to knit these. I notice that the pattern is no longer available, but I know the pattern by heart. Or at least I think I do!
In this case I chose two handspun yarns to go with a “striped” scarf. These two skeins were from the same fiber source. One was yellow and the other grey with some yellow. So the striping becomes a little bit vague at times. But I really like the effect!
It’s kind of an interesting shaded look that is very pretty. It’s also knitting up very quickly and I’ll have to figure out what to next knit after this! Potentially another one or two of these. It’s too easy!
I have yet another finished object! I really appreciate having made the time to finish up three projects in the past few weeks instead of casting on new things and letting these languish.
This one is Scottish Stripes. I’ve knit it before. This time was the same experience. Basically, I’ll get about halfway through and then just lose all interest. Then eventually I find I can pick it up again and finish. Honestly though, the lost interest part is severe and I hope I never choose to knit this again.
All that aside, the finished object is really truly amazing, particularly with handspun yarn! This one is out of Miss Marja’s handspun and it goes to her once it is finished. More than a year ago now I agreed to knit this out of her yarn for her. I bet she doesn’t even remember now! I was really looking forward to knitting it and passing it off to her, but the space in between losing interest and picking it back up was extremely long. It resided in a work drawer without being touched from before covid hit last year until just the past few weeks.
And that’s it! I don’t have any more long term unfinished but close to finished objects that need finishing, so I am back to choosing new items to cast on.
I started this project back in September but set it aside for various other projects over the months. I knew I wasn’t far from being done, so I recently decided to pick this back up and finish it.
I used 3 different handspun yarns. The green and the pink are my handspun and the white is Miss Marja’s handspun.
I had really been trying to use up ALL the yarn, so I knit and knit and knit and then it became apparent that my scarf would be way too long to even wear if I kept it up. So instead, I cut back and ended up with a much too long scarf, and I don’t mind much to long. I would mind unwearable.
I was really taken with all the different textures and colors in the scarf pattern which is truly what pushed me to knit it. I love combining textures and patterns and it really does help keep interest in a large scarf.
This mosaic knitting was probably my favorite part to knit, though I am not sure it’s my favorite part of the scarf overall.
The raindrops pattern looks so nice blocked out even though it really felt while knitting that these would look silly finished. I am glad I knit them anyhow!
Seeing the soft colors added in to the white yarn was really fun and gave the whole thing added interest. Tiny pops of purple, yellow, blue, I just love the way handspun knits up!
I probably wouldn’t knit this pattern again necessarily but I am glad I knit it. It was a very large project and rather intense, but kept my interest and was also quite satisfying. Turns out that blocking it was the true challenge! This has been sitting around waiting for photographs for a few weeks, so I am eager to finally wear it next week when I head in to the office in the extreme cold.
I test knit a pair of night mitts for Rachel at Dyeabolical in early December and after they were done, I immediately cast on for another pair. It was a really fun pattern and I loved the end result!
But as many other projects go, I got partway through the first mitten then put it down to make all the pretty little christmas ornaments. I didn’t pick it back up until a few weeks ago. I’ve been on a bit of a kick to finish up a couple of projects that were languishing before casting on something new.
Once I did pick it up, I started to have a few problems. I tend to knit on two circular needles for these types of projects. The first needle broke. No big deal! I went back into my stash and found another needle of the same size and started using it. The next day a second needle broke. That left me with only 1 needle where I needed two. In my whole stash! Which is surprising because I used to have scads and scads of needles of all the same size. But I bought most of them between 2006 and 2009 so I think they’ve just all outlived their lifespan pretty much all at the same time.
Naturally, completing the mittens took yet another pause as I worked out the new needle situation. I ended up purchasing a few new needle sets. The first one to come in showed up defective. So it had to be returned, setting me back even longer.
But I am now pleased to say that I have a few more needle sets to replenish the ones that have bit the dust over the years. And, I also have a new pair of mittens!
These were knit with some handspun yarn from Miss Marja. I really enjoyed the yarn and was pleased to be able to get two pairs of mittens out of one skein. I gave the other pair to Marja, so this pair I get to use myself. Just in time too, it’s awfully cold here in the midwest!
Guess who got good sleep last night? This girl! Little foster nugget did not whine in her kennel at all last night so she’s really catching on to the routine. She also went for her third walk last evening, and she actually enjoyed herself. She had a moment or two here and there where she was concerned, but by and large had a great time. Progress is being made, including so much progress that she’s getting nice and naughty around the house. This is exactly the type of progress we want to see out of a timid dog, it means she’s blossoming right before our eyes.
The other good news is that she has a potential home, she will meet her potential family on Saturday. We will have her through the end of the year no matter what, but it will be good to get her home settled and know where she is going once she’s done with all her vetting.
As for the advent stuff, let’s start with the christmas ornament. My goal with this project is to have only spent money on the pattern. From the start, I had intended only to knit from stash yarn and stuff with stash wool. So far so good! However, I am running out of lighter colored yarns for contrast. So for this christmas ball I used a handspun yarn. It’s mostly natural colored with a few bits of a light brown thrown in. You can see that in the ornament itself.
It works just fine, and there’s something pretty about the addition of silk in the handspun that is adding some places with extra shine. I really enjoyed using the handspun on this one.
I am actually falling behind on knitting these. Initially I was keeping a few balls ahead each day so that I could get them blocked and then a decent photograph taken. But, this morning before work I had to put the kettle on and boil some water so I could steam block this one before work. The photo is dark, but it is still evocative of the christmas spirit. I actually love those dark december days leading up to winter solstice.
As for my makeup advent, this morning I opened my too faced natural face palette. This one tends to be a little on the darker side and I typically only wear it in the summer. Receiving it in the winter felt like a bit of a stretch! But at the same time, I think I made it work just fine. I used a blush, a bronzer, and a highlighter out of this.
And that’s it, that’s day 18 as a wrap. Looking forward to a weekend!
On day 16 I was working from home. And the item that my daughter had wrapped for me was a perfume, my Nest black tulip. So, that felt very much like a little bonus, as I didn’t have to wear makeup that day, it was a nice break.
However, day 17 has been an in office day for me, and I received my royal blue eyeliner. Since this was in a project at the beginning of the year, this felt very much like something I have already spent a ton of time with this year. But, I definitely don’t regret having to use it today. I paired it with my Colourpop It’s My Pleasure palette for another purple look.
It was a bit of a tiring night and I think it shows. Mr. Ink wanted me to stay up later than usual watching a show, which I did. When I went to bed, I gave foster dog to Miss Butterfly as usual, but she’s become rather attached to me now. So, she wouldn’t knock off the whining once I handed her over for bedtime. In an effort for me and my daughter to get sleep, I got back up, moved the kennel into our bedroom, and then put her in our bedroom in the kennel. Took her a bit, but she did settle there. Unfortunately, she did wake us up multiple times during the night. But I think she’ll get used to it! And I suspect we’ll only have her through the end of this year, I think she’ll find a home quickly anyhow. She did also massively screw up my morning routine by being in our bedroom, but I’ll just work out a new routine and call it good.
On to the Christmas Balls. For yesterday’s christmas ball, I had gotten a bit tired of the same christmas colors over and over, so I decided to try something new. I pulled out two leftover sock yarns and used those as my colors.
I absolutely love this one! It just turned out so pretty, and it was exactly what I needed.
In keeping with that, I used the same lighter blue and paired it with a charcoal color for the next one. This ball is called winter wonderland and each side had a different motif. When I chose the colors I wanted to consider what snow looks like at night. I’ve got the charcoal of the night and the blue tones that the snow takes on in the deep winter.
There’s a tree, a church, and a home with a star above it. Another side features another home, but it’s similar to the one above and I didn’t take a further photo.
It’s been enjoyable to try a few new color combos. In reality, I am running out of the lighter colors in normal size yarns so it’s harder and harder to make colors pop. Creativity is helping! I just don’t want to knit the remainder of the balls for this year on size 0 needles. That’ll have me giving up too fast. We’ll see what I come up with for the final 7!
Let’s start with foster dog before getting into advent stuff! When we went to meet the transport, we found a little jack russell terrier mix who was so terrified she clung to the back of her little kennel for dear life and it took 2 sets of hands to pry her out of there. She then would not walk on a leash, would not potty even after a full day on the road, and just crouched and cringed. We had our work cut out for us! And to be honest, that’s likely why I haven’t blogged since. Timid put it mildly, she was terrified. But I am pleased to report that after a few days in our home she’s improving with leaps and bounds.
She no longer crouches and makes herself small when our dogs walk by her, instead she likes to trot along with them wherever they go. Loud noises still make her freeze, but not ALL of them. She can only walk past two houses before panic sets in and she turns around to go home from a walk, but she now likes the snow in the yard and rolls through it excitedly. She’s been a fun little nugget to watch move toward comfort. For the first few days it felt like I had a newborn, she had to be carried almost everywhere, she slept a lot, she cried when I put her down. But now she’s getting used to being a dog, gaining independence, and working toward confidence.
And on to christmas balls! I’ve got 3 to post, gingerbread, ice crystals, and nutcracker.
And then there’s the makeup post. I only have one photo, I used the makeup from all three days in one look today. The first item was my chella brow cream. I got it in a subscription box ages ago and haven’t used it in about a year. I actually thought it might be dried up and I could declutter it, but in reality, it works just fine.
Item 2 is my alamar cosmetics blush palette which I absolutely love but forget to use because I tend to concentrate on 2 blushes at a time, something warm toned and something cool toned. I was very happy to use this today.
Item 3 is my actual favorite eyeshadow palette in my collection, my petit pro soleil palette. I love all my petit pro palettes but this one is just so beautiful, unusual, and intense!
So there’s our 3 day catch up post, I hate to admit it, I am way behind on knitting but doing my best. However, tomorrow’s christmas ball is glorious, my favorite yet! So stay tuned for that!
For day 12, Miss Butterfly had chosen my Urban Decay eyeliner, in color Freak. This is a lovely green color and it’s a lot of fun to use, but I really wasn’t sure how to use it in this instance. Then, eventually, I decided that since it’s Saturday and I wasn’t going to see very many people, I’d go ahead and experiment. If I had my entire collection it likely would have been a little easier but with my Violet Voss Sugar Crystals palette hidden somewhere, it wasn’t super easy to get inspired about a colorful look. In the end I used my BH Cosmetics zodiac love palette along with the mac snowflushed highlighter from the other day. I also did use the lancome foundation for the first time.
It had snowed overnight, so Mr. Ink cleared the driveway while I was playing with makeup. As soon as I’d put on lipstick he said “Ok, I am ready to go to the dogpark.” So today’s photo is in the car on the way there. It’s a very glam look for the dogpark but my dogs didn’t mind.
Today’s Christmas ball photo was not taken outdoors since the snow makes the light too intense. The snow does help indoor photos though, so this turned out great right on the tree!
We got some work done around the house today and are officially ready to welcome our foster dog this evening, cannot wait!
I skipped a day again, but that’s ok! Let’s start with the christmas ball While there should be 2, there’s only one. The day 10 ball is reminiscent of nuts, kind of a favorite treat at christmas time:
I don’t have day 11! I tried to knit it numerous times, probably 4 or 5 restarts, but each time it was a fail. I grew increasingly frustrated, then I realized that wait! This is supposed to be fun! So I skipped it and moved on to day 12.
Now let’s talk dogs. I posted a few days ago about the new foster dog who was going to arrive this weekend. Unfortunately, circumstances didn’t allow that to happen, and I found that to be quite a bummer. It really got me down. To be honest, I’d already purchased him a few items because we don’t usually take such large dogs and we couldn’t repurpose what we already have. It’s not the loss of money, I just feel for the dogs that cannot make it, and we’ve had this happen twice now in our short time fostering. I love each of our fosters before they even arrive, the idea of them is so full of potential and joy. So my heart breaks a little for them when something prevents them from coming. It’s the hard part of rescue, and honestly, it’s a struggle for anyone involved in rescue. No matter how many you do save, you still are upset about those you can’t save, even if it isn’t your fault. The fosters who cannot make it still reside in my heart in a special place, and I do think of them often.
But, the other thing about rescue is that there are always more dogs needing to be saved. If you didn’t get the right fit the first time, the second time is likely to work out. I got a message a few days later from our rescue, 2 smaller dogs had been picked up and needed a home, I could take my pick. I chose a little female, about 25 pounds, and said to be 5 or 6 years old. I’ve heard she’s timid, so we will be working on her confidence as soon as we can. She hasn’t been in rescue for any time at all, she was dumped very recently, so I don’t know what her medical needs will be. If I were to make guesses, I’d guess she’ll test heartworm positive once in our care. I also don’t have a good photo, just a tiny, shadowed, blurry photo. Which I’ll share anyhow.
We are excited to welcome her tomorrow evening. I think I’ll stop by the local shops and grab her a sweater, it’s going to be cold for her so far north from where she originates.
It’s a tough time in rescue right now. Lots of dogs needing homes but it’s hard to plan events where these dogs can be seen. Indoors is out of the question with virus rates being so high, but the weather is cold so planning outdoor events doesn’t work either. If you have the heart and the cash for it, please donate even just the cost of a cup of coffee to your local shelter or rescue, they’ll be ever so grateful.
Now on to the makeup stuff. For day 10, Miss Butterfly had wrapped up my mac snowflushed highlighter. This is a highlighter that flips gold to pink. It’s VERY sparkly. It’s not something I use as an actual highlighter. I mean, I might if I were going to a holiday party or something? But I am not. I am just going to work. So instead I like to use it as an eyeshadow topper, kicking up the sparkle intensity layering it over other shadows. In this case I took a burgundy shimmer from my tarte be a mermaid palette all over my lid, then topped it with the snowflushed highlighter. I loved it, it was a very pretty but still fairly professional look.
On day 11, I unwrapped 2 sample size foundations. So, that’ll be one that lasts me two days in a row. This morning I used the it cosmetics cc cream. This one arrived in the lightest shade, which I haven’t used before. It’s definitely too light. I don’t think it looks particularly great, so I’ll use it as a lightening mixer rather than on its own from here on out.
This I paired with my Urban Decay Born to Run palette. And you know what? I am finally willing to admit it. This is just not a great palette. The shimmers crease and wear off my eyelids in record time. It looks positively terrible by the end of the day, but I can see the wear on it by 9 am. The majority of the matte shades are fine, and I may consider depotting this if I can manage to do so. It’s really irritating to have wanted a palette so much and then have it to have turned out so poorly overall. But really, my very well loved tarte mermaid palette performs so much better I question as to why I am still picking up the UD one. Especially since I’ve got loads of wonderful palettes! It’s a waste of time.
That’s all from me today, hopefully by the end of the weekend there’ll be at least a few dog photos! And more makeup and christmas balls of course!
I…kind of forgot to post yesterday so we’ll do day 8 and 9 together.
On day 8, I unwrapped my A’Pieu juicy pang blusher. It is another k-beauty item I picked up and absolutely love. I also wore the copper colored supershock shadow since I couldn’t wear the copper and the purple on the same day from day 7. I worked from home so I paired it with a red lipstick because why not? Oh how I miss red and bright lipstick!
Then today, the item was my mac fix+ and that’s not an item that is easy to see, not a colored product. But I did what I was supposed to anyhow, and took the selfie.
We are back to the bad lighting as I left for work early in the morning.
As for my christmas balls? The first was a little bird on a branch which was absolutely delightful:
And the next was a little angel which I did on size 0 needles so it’s awfully small!
I had done a decent job getting ahead on these over the past weekend, but midweek I am running out of steam again, falling a bit behind. I have tomorrow’s ready to go, but the one after that has taken me a full 2 days to even get the increases done, so it’s very slow. I fear I might actually fall behind fully, but I should be able to get caught up again over the upcoming weekend.
Let’s switch it up a bit. Today we’ll talk news first. We’ve agreed to our next foster! We’ve been without a foster for around 3 weeks, our third foster found a wonderful home with a family who had previously adopted from our rescue. She was a tough foster, she was really high energy, that part isn’t too hard for us, but she also wasn’t the brightest. That part WAS hard on us. Thankfully she was loving and sweet and liked to cuddle when she settled down, and we do love her with all our hearts while also being super happy she found a home with a loving family. And honestly, once she left, we were ready for the break.
I am not sure when this guy is coming to us, likely this month sometime. He’s around a year or two, and has been in the shelter for a year without finding his forever home. Like the rest of our fosters, he’s coming up from Louisiana to try finding his home in the midwest. He does not have any medical needs, so he’ll be ready to be adopted right after he joins our family. We will do as we always do, get him adjusted to living in a home, get to know him well, and then start promoting him and bringing him to various events where he can be shown off to potential homes. I look forward to it! It keeps us busy despite the darker days of the winter during a pandemic.
He’s currently about 50 pounds and needs to put on some weight. We hear he’s quite playful and that will be fun at the dog park. I like his vague idea of spots on his coat!
OK, now on to the advent stuff. first the knitting! Today’s christmas ball is perhaps the prettiest one yet! I really like it.
And finally, the homemade makeup advent calendar. Today I opened my Missha bb cream. I’ve heard many good things about it but hadn’t yet used it so I was eager to give it a try. I also received a “gift” of an ulta brand eyeshadow palette from ulta, and I used that for today’s makeup as well.
This is definitely a weekend look for me, hair is less dramatic, and so is the makeup. I think the Missha color is great on me, looks quite natural. I have a lot of different foundations as I really do enjoy trying them out, but I am also slowly developing opinions on ones I would repurchase, and this seems like it might fit into that category, though wearing it to work must happen first! I need to see how it plays out over a full day of wear with a mask.
In any case, another fun day of makeup play with the calendar that cost me nothing and only cost my child her time.
Just a short post from me today. I opened my homemade makeup advent calendar this morning to find my Game of Thrones eyeliner. It’s a lovely metallic gold and I am always happy to use it, so this was a real win for the morning. I again used my tarte be a mermaid palette, this time using the duochrome shadow that flips from brick red to blue. Then I lined all around my eyes with the gold eyeliner. I also used my Laura Geller blush again. It’s fun to explore my extremely paired down makeup collection during this time frame.
The christmas ball was not a real win for me. I’ve made this mistake in the past as well, pairing two similarly toned yarns creates a colorwork project where absolutely none of the pattern pops. I knit this one on size 0 needles so it’s comparatively very small. Which I actually like! But I will do better at pairing yarns next time.
That’s it from me! Looking forward to the weekend and better lighting and extra time and the ability to get out of the house more since we are no longer on quarantine! I hope you have a lovely weekend as well.
It was a back to work day for me now that we are positive I am virus free. After a week and a half away, it is a delight and definitely made me feel a bit more “with it” in general.
Sadly, this means the lighting for my homemade makeup advent day is a little underwhelming. You see, it’s still dark when I leave for work and once at work, while I am still in my car, the mask goes on and stays on.
What did my daughter choose for day 3? My Laura Geller baked blush. It’s lovely, a product I truly enjoy, but don’t use nearly enough. I again paired it with my Tarte be a mermaid palette, creating a nice warm neutral look, added a bit of lip gloss, and out the door I went.
As for my christmas ornament? It’s a sheep! I have gauge problems on this one, but I do like that it’s a sheep. My daughter currently collects sheep, and she previously collected horses. Years ago, I knit her a navy and grey horse ornament, so now she’ll get to add a navy and grey sheep ornament to her collection.
That’s it from me today, back on campus means I am not sure how I’ll be able to keep up with these advents on time but I’ll sure try!
Here’s the thing. I am doing a lot of knitting right now. Quite frankly, we are in quarantine after my daughter tested covid positive. Don’t worry-none of us are particularly ill. I still don’t know if I even have it, and Mr. Ink has been the sickest but we don’t have his test results either. We are the classic case of thinking “are we or aren’t we, no couldn’t be, better get tested anyhow” and then being extremely surprised when Miss Butterfly tested positive.
I’ve got a little extra time on my hands. Our foster got adopted about 2 weeks ago. Right before that, Rose, our coonhound, somehow managed to tear open a hole in the side of her body needing stitches. So, all our many weekly dog park trips came to a sudden halt. Giving me more time. Then the day Rose was to get her stitches out, we found out at Miss Butterfly tested positive, so in the end, we had to take Rose’s stitches out ourselves, because we couldn’t go to the vet. So we also can’t go to the dog park, leaving us, again, with loads of extra time on our hands.
I’ve continued knitting. After yesterday’s big reveal I felt the need for a palate cleanser. Thick yarn, easy pattern. 1×1 rib seemed perfect. And, I had a skein of Miss Marja’s handspun that would precisely do the trick.
This resulted in a very fast and very pretty squishy scarf. As soon as that was done, I was on to my next project, which is a post for another day.
It’s about as fantastic a project I could ever knit, let alone on a year I really haven’t knit much at all.
I’ve kept it quiet, but I did the westknits mystery shawl this year, titled Slipstravaganza. I finished last weekend and managed to get the blocking done this week.
I used almost a full 4 balls of sockweight yarn for this. That’s as much knitting as any sweater.
The details were intricate.
I added a final blue stripe to the border beyond the 6 stripes written in the pattern. I wanted to have a little more blue making an appearance. I managed to finish the final blue row with just a yard of yarn left. It was a nail biter.
This is one of those knits that looks harder than it is. On the other hand, I did learn a lot of great techniques. I am so pleased to have knit this shawl! It was a delight and honestly, I’d do it all over again.
It’s been nice to get a little knitting mojo back after such a long break. First it was video games, then it was just having so much to do in the evenings after work, interfering with knitting. Things are slowly calming down a bit and progress is being made.
For my Festival of Stitches shawl, I have now worked through “clue 3” which takes us to the mosaic stitches on both sides of the shawl. I like how the pattern is written, with one side having the green color as the background color and the other side having the pink color as the background color.
As you can see at the top on the right hand side I have also begun clue 4. This clue is a cable clue, and while it was written to be done in the pink color, I have chosen to knit it in the green since the pink color isn’t likely to cable all that well. The handspun is just enough thinner to make it not ideal for a cable clue. I don’t think that changing the color will change the overall effect of the colors in the shawl, and I’ve plenty of yarn. This pattern is particularly good at indicating how much yarn to use of each color during a clue so it gives me confidence that I can continue knitting in the colors I prefer.
I am still enjoying this project and even though I haven’t had much in the way of finished objects this year, I think I may get a nice amount of use out of this one once it is complete.
Just some updates with what is going on around here. First and foremost, our lovely foster dog, who was with us for more than 2 months, found her forever home!
We will absolutely miss her cute face and antics. We will NOT miss having what is, technically, a puppy around the house. While she was over a year old, pregnancy happened while she was still a puppy, and that plus mothering kept her from continuing on as a puppy like she should have. So she picked up where she left off in our home. Her new family will love growing with her and I am so glad she found her place.
Miss Butterfly, who had been begging for a foster dog break prior to our foster dog finding her home, immediately decided she wanted a new foster once she was gone. While that’s not how it works, we did end up saying we’d babysit another foster, so this little guy is with us at the moment.
He’s not really afraid, he makes himself at home in any situation. He’s not a puppy. And he likes Mr. Ink, something our previous foster never could manage to do. So, we are pretty pleased with our short time with him.
I’ve been doing some knitting again. Still working on the festival of stitches I showed off last time I posted about knitting. It’s come a good way since then! I am really enjoying the progress.
Mr. Ink has a week of vacation this week, and while I am trying to get at least one day off, work is busy enough that it may not happen. It’s fascinating to me that despite a pandemic, things are moving along so quickly at work that I cannot afford to take time off. Crazy!
I did manage to find a new project that I could get inspired about. I had seen a finished Festival of Stitches stole on instagram and decided that was one I could really get interested in.
I immediately chose three handspun yarns that would work for the stole and began winding them. And there they sat for at least a month while I went through my no knitting period.
Then when I started knitting again, I acted like I couldn’t read a pattern and had to restart the project at least 4 times. I don’t know what my major malfunction was but there was certainly a brain block I needed to get through.
I am on my way now and have knit the center triangle.
I am not sure I ever expected to knit baubles voluntarily but I really do like the look of them in there. Now I get to begin the next section.
I’ll tell you what, I mentioned in a recent update post that I haven’t really been knitting lately, and that is certainly the case. However, I did have a project on the needles for a time and I finally finished it.
It’s another Nighshift shawl, once done with the first colorful one I was inspired to knit another since I had the yarn for it. That being said, I kind of ended up going on a tangent in regard to the color transitions. I planned them out how they’d best work for the yarn I had rather than what the pattern called for.
This one was far more pink and purple toned than the previous one, and I planned it that way. I again truly enjoyed knitting this and also very much enjoyed using all my leftover handspun yarns for it. And now I have nothing on my needles at home and haven’t had for about a week. At work I’ve got a project but I haven’t worked on it since at least March. It may be some time before I manage to post another craft related photo. And for me, that’s a little odd.
I took a much needed 2 weeks off. Most of that time was spent at home, obviously, with Miss Butterfly. Mr. Ink also took time off to be at home for part of my two weeks. I had projects around the house I felt I wanted to get done, but in the end, I didn’t do many of them.
The reality is that I really needed that reset of my brain and my work attitude. And it worked! I am no longer stuck in the loop of checking my email while I am at home and worrying a lot about work items that aren’t mine to worry about on off hours.
I have a few blog posts planned, and I had this finished object to photograph, but just couldn’t be bothered to get to it. I finished this likely about a month ago actually.
It’s really lovely! It’s a combo of handspun that I made, the grey tones, and handspun that Miss Marja made, the colored yarn. I believe the two yarns really look perfect together, and I am glad I made the choice.
Today was supposed to be a post of my pan those eyeshadows roulette update, but I just didn’t get photos in a timely manner. Returning to work this week has been exhausting. Hopefully I can get that post up soon though as I am still going strong on my project and still enjoying it quite a bit.
That’s the quick update from me today, hope everyone is having a decent week.
When I finished up my nightshift shawl, I wasn’t in the mood to go hunt down a proper pattern and yarn combo. So, I used a couple things that were already wound up and sitting near my living room chair. One was a chain ply yarn that Miss Marja made, and the other was a 3 ply yarn I made out of fleece I processed myself.
I decided on the simplest of the simple scarves, and just did a 1×1 rib knit alternating the yarn colors. It’s always a hit.
I’d say it’s coming along quite nicely and I definitely appreciate the pairing of the grey with the greens and purples. I am approaching the halfway point, according to the amount of Marja’s handspun I have available for it. I had 2 balls of yarn and I am almost done with the first.
At some point, I’ll need to take a closer look at my stash and my patterns to see what I want to knit next, but this will definitely do for now.
I’ve been following a lot of folks who have made the nighshift shawl and I’ve always enjoyed how they turned out. I finally decided instead of just following and drooling over finished objects, it’s time for me to knit one of my own.
I did not end up following along with the proper color sequence. Instead, I decided to use a bunch of handpsun yarn I had, most of which had 100 yards or less per color.
It turned out bright and cheery and scrappy. I enjoyed it so much that I have another shawl’s worth of handspun already wound up and waiting for me to start one with predominately pink and purple tones. I doubt I’ll start it today, but likely at some point this week.
In other types of news, I really enjoy blocking a shawl in the summer. Once soaked, I can often set it out in the sun and it’s done drying in no time since the heat is so high here!
We were looking forward to our next foster dog, a blue-eyed gal that I’d already fallen hard for. But, alas, her mental health just isn’t what it needs to be to come to us and get adopted out. I am thankful for the rescue she’s currently at being honest about the situation and not putting us and our dogs in danger. I hope for the best for her. Sometimes rescue is sad.
But, our rescue, knowing how much we were looking forward to our next foster dog, hooked us up with a mamma dog that needs placement. Her puppies are also coming to our rescue and will go to a different foster home. So, we again get to look forward to fostering and are hoping that an arrangement can be made for our foster dog to be here soon!
I am still knitting, though I had been dividing my time between two different projects so progress looked slower. Now that I think about it, the second project never even made it to an in progress photo and blog post. It is close enough to being done now that I will just wait until I have another finished object to post.
But, I did show off my striped bias shawl made out of laceweight silk and a leftover ball of gorgeous handspun I had in stash. Now it’s complete.
This is a strong “will knit again” project. I like the drape of it, I like the pops of color in the handspun, the knitting of it was very pleasant, and it’s soft and going to feel fantastic around my neck in the winter. And in fact, I do have enough of the laceweight yarn to pair it with another handspun ball of leftovers.
Here’s a finished object I quite enjoyed knitting in the most mindless of ways.
This is the Strider scarf and boy did it turn out beautifully! The yarn is Miss Marja’s handspun. I was 2/3 of the way through when Rosie dog got hold of the ball of yarn and ripped it up pretty good. I was able to untangle enough to finish the scarf properly without too much loss. It’s still a nice beefy scarf. But, I would have appreciated having all the yarn to devote to it of course.
This is most certainly on my list of items to knit again. Absolutely.
So, I finished up the flatten the curve scarf over the weekend and realized I hadn’t shown the other project I’ve been working on. The pattern is called Strider, and it’s a very simple modular scarf/shawl. I am, again, using Marja’s handspun from my stash. This one is a nice deep green gradient. The long rows of this knit show off that color beautifully.
The rows are long, the increases are simple, and it’s all garter stitch. I should be bored. I am not.
I decided to use some of Miss Marja’s lovely handspun to knit a flatten the curve scarf. Sadly, I did not read the pattern correctly and missed some of the garter ridges. But, it’s still a pretty scarf.
Half of it is knit flat and the other half on the bias, which is pretty clever, I think. That being said, this really needs a garter border down the length of the side, as the edges on the flat side want to curl in.
I really enjoyed the changing colors of the handspun yarn though, isn’t it pretty?
Recently I am generally knitting only one project at once, but this week I ended up casting on two new projects.
I think I chose to do so because when I started the one which was laceweight, I quickly got bored knitting laceweight stockinette, and had to do something which had more interest to me.
Here’s the laceweight stockinette project:
The pattern is Striped Bias Shawl but I cut down the number of stitches to make it into a scarf instead. I had plenty of laceweight yarn, but the thicker handspun I wanted to use was lower in yardage than what was called for. So, I decided to make it a scarf instead.
This should be a very soft scarf, the laceweight yarn is silk and the handspun has a high cashmere content. I like pairing two textures together, I often think this is one of the best uses of handspun. So, I think I’ll be particularly happy with this project when it is done even if I am not thrilled with the knitting of it.
Because I quickly exhausted my motivation for laceweight silk, I cast on a Flatten the Curve scarf out of Miss Marja’s handspun. It’s handspun I’d had my eye on for a very long time in her collection. During our holiday time spent together, she decided it was one she would allow me to knit up. I am loving this scarf, no motivation problems here at all!
I am sure that’s part color change and part slight interest with the bias section and simple pattern. This is one of those patterns that wants to knit itself. If I had to do it over again, I’d make a garter border and a bit of a garter stitch edge on the straight knit side, as those pieces want to curl. But, it’ll be a nice warm comfortable scarf once it’s done.
I haven’t managed at all to work on any new spinning, but I think that’s probably ok for now. Current projects and foster dog care are pretty sufficient to keep me occupied at the moment!