October 20, 2009

Bling bling

Gilet a rangs raccourcis
Originally uploaded by miminh3
I finished my GRR (the famous Gilet a Rangs Raccourcis) months ago but I only made the fastening brooch yesterday so at last, here's the finished set!

I haven't dabbled much in wire/jewelry/beads things except for making stitch markers. The brooch only took me a couple of hours so I'm hoping to make the matching necklace before the end of the year.

The gilet is knitted with La Droguerie's "alpaga" and "plumette" yarns. "Alpaga" is of course 100% alpaca, it is very close to Drops Alpaca and available in many colors (the heathered ones are especially stunning). "Plumette" is a kid mohair/polyamid blend whose colors often match the alpaga. The alpaga/plumette mix was soft but my fingers tell me that if I'm going to knit with a mohair blend, then I might as well knit with Kidsilk Haze so I will probably knit La Droguerie's patterns with an alpaga/KSH mix from now on.

I'm heading to Paris and Amsterdam in two weeks. It just so happens that:
- La Droguerie is releasing a new book at the end of the month (you can see a preview as an Advent calendar here)
- Amsterdam's main yarn store is the Rowan distributor for the Netherlands. Perhaps Kim Hargreaves' new book, Winter Blooms, will be out by then?

October 18, 2009

Stepping Stones scarf

Stepping Stones scarf
Originally uploaded by miminh3
Someone I know is taking a two year sabbatical so I wanted to give her something to wish her good luck. She's always commented on my knitting -- I even knitted her a pair of Mac and Me yoga socks a few years ago. I wanted a scarf that would be soft like a big hug, something that she could wear indoors as well as outdoors. The answer was a Stepping Stones scarf.

I finished it way ahead of the deadline: it only took me two weeks. The pattern (by Jane) was easy to memorize and the yarn (Ixchel by Spirit Trail) produced a nice and colorful "meandering". I hope the recipient likes it!

Notice the nifty blocking contraption? I was getting tired of using the guest bed and wet towels every time something required blocking so when I saw the Knitter's Block at a LYS, I splurged.

My next blocking adventure: the shawl that was two years in the making...

October 12, 2009

The Quad
Originally uploaded by miminh3

Don't you wish you were sitting in one of those Adirondack chairs and knitting? I do!

In my next post: two finished projects!

October 04, 2009

Mmmm... Fall

Foxfire Fiber studio
Originally uploaded by miminh3
It's fall foliage time in New England - though I am sad that the summer was so short, I love fall as it means perfect knitting weather, new yarns in the shops, and the KR retreat (among other things).

In between day trips to admire the leaves and studying, I've been able to stop at the Green Mountain Spinnery (their new book, 99 Yarns and Counting, is out and I highly recommend it) and attend the autumn open house organized by Barbara Parry for the Sheep Shares members.

Unfortunately, I came a little late so between that and the rain, I did not get to see the sheep but I caught a glimpse of Caitlyn (I think), one of the two llamas. It was great to hear Barb talk about the year and the exciting plans she has lined up for next year. She had many treats for us, both of the sugary kind and fibery kind (I won two skeins of Cormo Silk Alpaca in variegated purple/brown)! I touched some of Teaberry's winning fleece... I might have to add a fiber share in 2010 :)

Project-wise, I'm knitting on a deadline! The goal is to have a finished Stepping Stones scarf by the end of October. The pattern is by Jane Cochran and I'm using Spirit Trail "Ixchel" in a beautiful blue/purple. I'm about halfway done so let's see if I make it on time!