Monthly Archives

February 2015

Gathering Cowl Finished

The Gathering Cowl is finished.

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It has been soaked late-night style and left to dry in front of the fire.

Note to self: practice the Kitchener stitch. I kind of suck at it. Is that a bad sign?

I liked the pattern, although I will say the geometry if the pattern wears better off-human than on-human, if that makes any sense?

It is definitely my snuggly go-to piece whenever the house is a bit nippy.

When is spring again?

(Pattern: Gathering Cowl by Xandy Peters; Yarn: String Theory in sock weight)

A Day In The Life

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Source

A day in the life of a knitter (who is also a mother of a toddler)…I picked a day to chronicle when I was off work and thus more likely to think about actually getting knitting in.

6:30 Up.

7:00 Out of bed.

7:15 Family soak in the hot tub (we keep the water under 100 for Reed).

7:45 Oatmeal with blueberries for Reed. Hot tea on the sofa for mom and dad.

8:00 Help Reed finish his oatmeal, considering he prefers to just pick out the blueberries.

8:15 Quick shower. Contemplate putting on make up. Then give up. In another life. Hide in bathroom a few minutes longer than necessary to secretly finish latest US Weekly. (Sick of coverage of The Bachelor and Kardashians…). “Self time.”

8:45 Make second breakfast for mom and dad. Eggs, sausage, leftover home fries. Reed eats and egg and sausage. He is like a hobbit.

9:15 Clean kitchen. Tidy house. Scrub toilet. Let the chickens out.

10:45 Mom runs errands while Reed and dad take a walk. Slightly jealous, but some things just need to get done. Also for next life: exercise.

12:00 Home. Heat the oven for a frozen pizza for lunch, assuage guilt because it is organic.

12:30 Pizza is a hit. Guilt further mitigated because dad makes a smoothie with kale, carrots and fruit. Reed loves it. Temporarily feel like Super Mom.

1:15 More dishes

1:30 Garden time. Prep bed for spring seeds (beets, spinach, bok choy, broccoli, carrots, and more). Harvest kale for dinner.

2:00 Dad decides to do a round on the riding mower with Reed. Mom dashes inside to prepare annual income taxes for appointment later in the week while child is occupied. Mom tries not to worry about the fact that nap time is being pushed and is instead grateful for the time to sort through papers without toddler trying to rip them up into tiny bits.

3:00 Mom finishes taxes. Dad finishes mowing. Quick snack for Reed and snuggle for nap.

3:30 Nap time is a no go. So much for knitting.

3:40 Snack time goes sideways. Bunny crackers flying through the air. Angry toddler. Make note to read more parenting books. Obviously my kid is poorly behaved (at times). Sweep bunny crackers.

3:45 Back out to the garden. Plant seeds. Play “soccer.” No-hands concept proves challenging. Concept of not walking on newly planted seeds also proves difficult to grasp.

5:00 Back inside. Pre-heat oven for kale chips. Make spaghetti with sauce from last summer’s garden.

5:30 Reed refuses to eat dinner. Too tired. Mom fail. More dishes.

6:00 Into the bath. Bubbles. Mom secretly scans the Internet/catches up on favorite blogs.

7:00 Pjs with screaming, stories with no screaming.

7:30 Reed is asleep. Make guacamole for tomorrow’s lunch.

8:00 Work on this blog post. Kick myself for not having cool photos of my own to include. Next life, along with wearing eye make up daily. Lament I never paint my finger nails but always want to… Who has time to sit still while they dry?

8:30 Consider blocking a shawl that has been waiting for a few weeks. Realize it won’t dry by morning and toddler will start day running around house with sewing pins…epic disaster. Postpone again and wonder what boss will think if I set up blocking on office floor (plus: radiant floor heating) to avoid interaction of toddler and sewing pins. Decide to pack blocking supplies this week and try blocking in office. Desperate.

8:35 Start knitting. Exhausted. Hope to last an hour. Almost done with project.

Work in Progress: Travel Knitting

It took too entire days, but we made it home. Such are the joys of living in The Middle of Nowhere: it takes a very long time to get to and fro anywhere else.

The night before our flight, I was up late frantically winding a skein of String Theory Hand Dyed Yarn in Caper Sock by hand. The skein was a gift and, as gifted yarn often does, it arrived unwound. I have not used String Theory yarns before, so I am curious to see how it turns out.

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After an hour of carefully draping the skein across the back of a dining room chair and slowing winding, winding, winding (and undoing several ridiculous knots!), I have now promised myself a thousand times over that my next knitting-related purchase will be a skein winder (or whatever you call those things).

Holy smokes.

How I made it this many years of knitting without one is a mystery to me. I guess I have always had the yarn store wind them for me…

I came across the Gathering Cowl pattern by Xandy Peters last month when I was searching Pinterest for “gathered stitches” while researching some stitch techniques for a potential pattern I have been pondering for a while now. The Gathering Cowl pattern popped into my feed, and I was intrigued.

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Photo credit via Ravelry, Xandy Peters.

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I like the geometry of Gathering Cowl. And its simplicity.

The pattern felt like a good candidate for an airplane knitting project.

And it was. Over two full days of traveling, I managed to get an hour of knitting in on the plane while my little guy napped. It wasn’t much, but I will take it.

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I am going to continue tonight, as the boys (large and small version) are sleeping peacefully, the house is quiet, and the fire is gently burning in the wood stove.

Sweet dreams, fellow knitters. Sweet dreams.

 

 

Pattern Release: Nikita Shawl

Often when I knit, I know the finished item will be a gift for a specific person. While I knit, I will think of that person. It’s like there is no going back. No changing my mind. No deciding to give the item to someone else or keeping it for myself after all.

It’s a done deal.

Their ethos is knit into every stitch.

That’s how it was for the Nikita Shawl, my most recent pattern now available on Ravelry here. From the very first stitch, I knew the shawl was destined for my child’s former day care provider. It was her color. Something she would wear. Ellen is the most remarkable woman, and she is retiring this year after many, many, many years of gracing the lives of so many children. I know she touched the life of my own child, and for that, I am eternally grateful.

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This shawl was also supposed to be a Christmas gift, but I haven’t quite delivered it yet.

Next week.

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My holiday season was unexpectedly bumpy, you might say. Many things were finished but still await delivery.

I don’t want to talk about it.

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Anyway….

The Nikita Shawl is a simple crescent shawl. It’s a top-down knit that begins by casting on just six stitches and increasing in stockinette. Edges are cleanly finished row by row in a slip stitch edging. The bottom of the shawl has a vine lace motif followed by a second pattern that creates a gentle wave on the cast off.

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It’s perfect. I love it. I hope you do too.

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Help Wanted

Okay knitters.

Spread the word.

I am looking for some knitters that also have the expressed skill of fluently speaking and writing in another language to help me translate some of my patterns.

I am willing to pay money.

I would say I am willing to pay cold, hard cash, but I am thinking PayPal is probably more realistic in this modern digital age.

I am particularly seeking knitters who can translate from English into German, French, Norwegian and Spanish.

(I have been telling myself I will do the Spanish translations for a year now, but who am I kidding. So far, I have translated a paragraph. Ha!)

I would love to develop long-term relationships with great knitters/translators and hope to translate many patterns together over years to come.

If you are interested, please contact me via email at andreazdavis@gmail.com to discuss details.

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