Yarn Shopping

We got 8 inches of snow on Sunday. We expected to get about 8 more inches tonight. I might run out of yarn and be unable to make it to the yarn store.

Well, no, not really, but the thought of more snow was enough to get me to pack up the kids and head to Knitting Next Door. I had a gift card and a birthday coupon that expires at the end of the month ready to use.

One of the best thing about Knitting Next Door is the toys. The kids were happy to play while I looked around for the perfect skein to buy.20190219_162915

They have lots of indie dyers, but they weren’t calling my name today. I was in the mood for workhorse sock yarn. I picked up some Christmas socks to make in December, rainbow socks to make for Pride Month or St. Patrick’s Day or any holiday that I can get away with wearing rainbow socks, and a skein of green worsted that Audrey wanted.20190219_1848468256484890966692283.jpg

I also picked up a kid sized sock ruler. I wasn’t aware that a smaller size existed, and I was just cursing the sock ruler for being difficult to fit in a small sock.

Are you getting more snow tonight? Are you ready to give up, only wear sweat pants until April, and start drinking hot chocolate by the bucket full? Am I really the only one?

WIP Wednesday

Well my goodness this week has flown. I can’t believe it’s already Wednesday.

This week I’ve been working on socks for Audrey and Elliot. They have close to the same size of feet, so they can share them. I really like how this yarn is knitting up, almost enough to make me wish I was making socks for myself with it instead.20190213_1410348243425957561140888.jpg

I made progress on the shawl this week. I only have four rows to go. I would have finished it last night, but we had a friend over for tacos and we stayed up talking late and I never got around to knitting.20190213_1411354716646202407262785.jpgI can’t wait to see what this looks like blocked. I hope to be wearing it by next Wednesday.

What have you been working on this week?

Yarn Box

Yesterday I headed up to Ankeny to enjoy some family craft time. One of my cousins from NW Iowa was in town visiting another cousin, so my sister and I joined them for an afternoon of fiber art. We drank tea, ate freezer bars (a treat so delicious I have had the recipe for years but have never trusted myself to make, as I would eat the entire pan), and watched Zac Efron musicals (totally appropriate for a group of women in their 40s, right?).

Before heading down to Ankeny, my cousin Annie asked if I would be interested in any of the fingering weight yarn her friend gave her. After confirming that it was wool, not acrylic, I said I would take any she would be willing to part with. I said this because yarn that is given to me doesn’t count in my yarn diet, I knit a lot of socks, I can always use yarn for my scrap blanket, and I’m so incredibly cheap I’ll never say no to free yarn (unless it’s acrylic, because that’s not my jam).

What awaited me when I arrived was not a few skeins of sock yarn. It was a giant box of yarn.

In the box there was 600g of Plymouth Select worsted weight yarn. There is enough to make Elliot the Gus Sweater in the 12 year size or a large shawl for me. I don’t love the color, so this might sit in my stash for years. I’m OK with that, as it will eventually leave.20190119_1904598127369503156186429.jpg

The box also included 160 g of red fingering weight yarn. I really like the color and the yarn. I’m thinking this could be a shawl.

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There was 375 g of tweed fingering weight yarn. This yarn is beautiful, and I’m looking forward to working with it. I’m thinking maybe a shawl or a cardigan for Audrey.20190119_1904211221221516684806810.jpg

The final surprise was 1320 g of super bulky yarn. If my calculations are correct I have enough to make myself a cardigan. I’m thinking Shawl Collar Cardigan #6501. I plan on skipping the texture and going for stockinette on the body instead. This color might be awful on me, and if it is it will give me the chance to experiment with dying a completed garment.20190119_1901281574724219833076623.jpg

Do you get excited about free yarn too? Do you have any suggestions for what to make with the red and tweed yarn?

 

 

WIP Wednesday

I’m working away on my Wonder Woman socks. I just picked up the stitches for the gusset. Audrey starts swim lessons again tomorrow, so I’ll get lots of pool side knitting done on these. 20190109_1546319157151740137961019.jpgThe socks are far enough along I should start thinking about my next pair. I am thinking I’ll grab something that is already wound and ready to go, as I’m feeling kind of lazy. I am pretty sure I have some more self striping yarn in my stash that I will probably pull out, as I’m feeling stripes lately.

I haven’t touched my shawl this week. I have been on the go lately and haven’t had much time to sit down and knit. I’m not feeling that shawl right now, so I’m not spending my time on it. I think it might be because it’s a fingering weight shawl, and I like worsted weight shawls more.

Due to my shawl weight recognition, I decided to throw caution to the wind and cast on a second shawl in progress. I started Andrea Mowry’s Hoarfrost last night (side note, whenever I think about the name of the pattern I think Whore Frost and then I think that it would be a great title for a novel about a Victorian era sex worker strike, but I digress).

I’m using yarn that has been in my stash for well over a decade. I remember picking it up at a stash bash event thinking I would make myself a sweater. That never happened, although I did eventually make a sweater for Elliot from the yarn. I think I have enough yarn leftover for the shawl, but if I don’t I will either find gray yarn in my stash for the lace portion or frog a scarf I made for John from the same yarn about a decade ago. 20190109_1547562306218279510924228.jpg

As you can see, I just started this and haven’t made much progress. I need to print the pattern before I really get rolling on this. I’m using one of the new project bags my sister made me for Christmas. This one is perfect for large projects like a sweater or big worsted weight shawl.

This week I hope to finish my socks, start a new pair of socks, and try not to cast on a third shawl. I wish you luck in your knitting this week.

 

Garden Wool & Dye Advent Calendar

Now that we are a week into January it feels like a suitable time to tell you about the advent calendar I splurged on this year. This year Anastasia from Garden Wool & Dye put together an advent calendar. It was remarkably affordable – under $100. I jumped at the chance to celebrate the season with yarn.

It arrived just after Thanksgiving. It was difficult not to open it all at once. I love how it was packaged. All of the materials were  compostable, even the sparkly twine. I love how her dedication to being environmentally sustainable carries over to every detail.

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I loved having so many mini skeins to add to my blanket. On Christmas I opened a gorgeous skein of yarn in colors I would normally not pick for myself. It’s funny how sometimes what I would never pick out is exactly what I need. 20190107_1435445035523394922255786.jpg

I’m not sure what the yarn will become. I’m open to any suggestions you have.

I’ll be doing the advent calendar again next year. The price will be going up, but it will still be manageable.

Do you do yarn advent calendars? Are you mini skein obsessed too?

WIP Wednesday

I’m hopelessly devoted to my current sock project. I can’t decide if it looks more like a Wonder Woman sock or Ernie’s sweater. Either way, I’m pretty sure this is going to be my new favorite pair of socks. The yarn is Biscotte Yarns Bis-Sock and the colorway is Princesse et les 7 mailles.

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Let me explain how much I love this yarn: while writing this post I organized a KAL with my friend Jess to make the Green Bay Packers socks. I was on the website to look up the colorway and ended up in a knit-a-long. That has never happened to me before. Don’t worry, I’ll post pictures when the yarn arrives (I can hear your sigh of relief from here).

I’ve also worked on my shawl this week, just not enough to bother showing you a new picture of it.

In 2018 I was a busy knitter. I completed 41 projects, 21 more than my goal at the start of the year.

December 29, 2018
December 22, 2018
December 18, 2018
December 16, 2018
December 8, 2018
December 4, 2018
November 15, 2018
November 13, 2018
October 27, 2018
October 23, 2018
October 15, 2018
September 24, 2018
August 23, 2018
August 12, 2018
July 16, 2018
July 6, 2018
June 12, 2018
May 23, 2018
May 13, 2018
April 28, 2018
April 10, 2018
April 2, 2018
April 2, 2018
March 29, 2018
March 21, 2018
March 15, 2018
March 13, 2018
March 9, 2018
March 8, 2018
February 17, 2018
February 9, 2018
February 6, 2018
January 30, 2018
January 28, 2018
January 3, 2018

I hope to slow down my knitting this year and continue to work through my stash. Last year I implemented a yarn diet. I only allowed myself to buy 100 g of yarn for every 500 g knit. I knit 8300 g last year and bought 1660 g of yarn. It felt amazing to work though so much of my stash. I found that I didn’t have guilt when I brought yarn into the house¬† (or, you know, ordered it mid blog post because I got so excited about Biscotte Yarns’ selection) because I knew I had earned it (please note that John doesn’t mind that I buy yarn, yarn guilt comes from me alone).

I still have a significant stash to work through. I would eventually only have yarn in my house that I will knit within the year. We don’t have a lot of space in our house, and my yarn is overwhelming me.

This year I’ll be doing the yarn diet again, this time allowing 100 g in for every 300 g out. I keep track of my yarn diet with a spreadsheet on Google docs, because that is what a stay at home mom with an MBA does for fun. If you are starting a yarn diet yourself and would like a copy of the spreadsheet just let me know and I’ll send a copy your way.

I hope you are enjoying this first week in the new year and getting some knitting done.