Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Socks for Mom

I spent Memorial Day weekend at my mother's house celebrating her 80th birthday.  We were joined by my sister, my younger brother and his mate. The only ones missing were my older brother and his wife, who were not able to make the trip from Arizona.  And Daddy, whom we've been missing every day for more than 10 years.
My mother is the only person other than myself for whom I make socks.  She loves her collection of handknit socks.  She likes to show them off and carefully darns them when they begin to show signs of wear. For this birthday, these socks were added to her collection...
Doesn't she have great ankles? Sadly, that delicate bone structure was not part of the genetic legacy passed on to me.
The yarn is Bertha from Dirty Water Dyeworks, a Merino/Cashmere/Nylon blend I got in the teacher gift bag at Sock Summit last summer. There is no pattern for this design yet, but Mom has asked that I call it Ramona - her middle name. I'll let you know if I decide to write it up for publication.
At 80, Mom is going strong.  She lives by herself in the house she and Daddy shared, drives herself wherever she wants to go, and is in remarkably good health.  I keep waiting for the day when I can beat her at Scrabble (a game at which my family is insanely competitive), but that day has yet to come.
Happy Birthday, Mom! You are a daily inspiration.  I love you.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Because Knitting and Animals Go Together

I know you see lots of fundraisers on Facebook and blogs, but if you are an animal lover, here is one that deserves your attention:
The gracious and talented Lisa Souza has created a special color of her beautiful sock yarn as a fundraiser for the Grace Foundation.
Photo from Lisa Souza Knitwear and Dyeworks

This shelter in California's Sierra Foothills has recently taken in a large number of horses and other animals from an abusive home, stretching their resources to the breaking point. These people are doing the work of angels, and we can help Lisa help them. If you, like me, treasure the company of your animal companion (mine is snoring beneath my chair as I type), please take a minute to read Lisa's information about the Grace Foundation, then take out your credit card and order a skein (or two, or three) of this yarn. You'll feel good about yourself the rest of the day.

What's on my needles? Kollage Yarns Riveting.
I've used Riveting for many projects, but this is the first one I'm making for myself. I'm using the stitch pattern from Day at the Beach, but making a V-neck, 3/4 sleeve cardigan. I think it will be just the thing to wear at the wholesale trade show in Columbus, Ohio in late June. At 6 sts to the inch, this is not a fast knit, but I'm making progress.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Work in Progress

I read a fair number of knitting blogs.  I don't read them all, and there are a fair number of excellent blogs I miss simply because I need to limit the time I spend at my computer doing things other than working. But I do read a lot.
I get a little annoyed when I see coy references to "secret", or "stealth" projects. I get more than a little annoyed when they are called "sekrit" projects, but that's just because I really don't relate to cute.

That said, I can't show you most of what I've been knitting lately. It is either for publication, in which case I am contractually obligated not to share it prior to publication, or it is for a yarn company who pays me for the privilege of revealing the design at the trade show in June. I can tell you that in the past 10 weeks, with the help of Pat the Wonder Knitter, I've delivered 10 completed projects.  I know.  Sometimes I even impress myself.

What can I show you? Hats.

I am eagerly anticipating attending the Giants game this evening with my sister and my son.  They are playing the Brewers, and Tim Lincecum (fondly known as The Freak) is scheduled to pitch. AT&T Park is a glorious place to watch a baseball game.  Perched on the edge of San Francisco Bay, even when the game isn't exciting, the view is.  But it gets cold in the evening, so I decided we all needed hats.

I dug around in the stash and came up with some yarn in appropriate colors. The orange is Blue Moon Fiber Arts Peru in Cozy Fierce and Dirty Orange. The black is Kid 'n Ewe (long ago discontinued).
Joe decided he wanted a full on fan hat, so he gets earflaps, mohawk fringe, and the team logo duplicate stitched on each side.
Jeni wanted something with cables. A sideways cabled band fills the bill.
For me, something simple with a little whimsy. Black piping gathered with a bow on one side.
At least our heads will be warm.

On my needles right now is another project I'm not yet willing to show. It is an 80th birthday present for someone who regularly reads this blog (hi, Mom!). Check back after May 26th for photos.