orchid lace mitts

Posted on 31 CommentsPosted in lace/shawls, patterns, Uncategorized

orchid lace scarf, these just might steal the scene.
who needs sleeves, anyway?

Orchid Lace Mitts
shown here in Fearless Fibers Merino Laceweight, colorway miracle

  • pattern price: $5.00US (ohio residents please add $.30 sales tax)
  • payment method: please use PayPal and fill in patternsATknitspotDOTcom as the recipient (remove AT and DOT; replace with symbols). paypal account not necessary; please email same address to request invoice.
  • Suggested Yarns: Fearless Fibers laceweight merino or cashmere, Wooly Wonka Fibers laceweight merino, Knitting Notions laceweight merino, Lorna’s Laces Nearly Solids, Rowan 4-ply Soft, Elann Baby Cashmere or Baby Silk, or any soft, fine sock-weight yarn.
  • Notes: These featherweight mitts in two lengths are knit at a fine gauge and feature a lace cuff and thumb, with a vertical motif along the outer side.
    Mitts may be resized by using larger or smaller needles and/or varying the yarn weight.
  • finished size: 6.5�? finished circumference around palm and 6�? at wrist; fits hands up to 8�? around
    Using one size smaller or larger needles will result in a difference of approximately 1/2 inch, and is recommended for those with smaller hands.
    finished length at stated gauge = 10(7.5) inches unstretched
  • yarn requirements: Long: 250 yards / Short: 175 yards
  • Gauge: unblocked: 32 sts and 48 rows = 4�? in stockinette. (fabric will be relaxed)
  • Needles: DPNs Size 2US (2.75mm) or size to obtain correct gauge

patterns will be emailed in PDF format once payment is confirmed or eCheck has cleared; please contact patternsATknitspotDOTcom for information about wholesale orders, or payment without a paypal account.

i am extremely grateful to my friend deb kessler, the genius dyer of fearless fibers yarn, for making such unspeakably beautiful yarns, and for sharing them so generously with me.
many MANY thanks to kim, orianna, and vanessa, champion test knitters!
kisses (and more—wink!) to david who photographed these SO sexy

my mitts are too sexy for my arms,

they’re too sexy for my chest,

mm, too sexy for my waist . . .

my mitts are too sexy for my yard, they’re too sexy for my tree

too sexy for my face.

(thank you, right said fred)


Posted on 1 CommentPosted in book reviews/events, Uncategorized

cara’s campaign to raise money for heifer international, begins today in the ramp-up for
spinout 2007! there are prizes, yes, but more importantly there is another chance to share our good fortune with others.

heifer is an organization dear to me because they provide sustainable assistance (including bees and sheep!) to help communities create alternative sources of income and food. head for the spinout 2007 registry page to give a little bit of your love (and coin) to them!

i couldn’t help myself

Posted on 42 CommentsPosted in food and garden, lace/shawls, projects

(flower of the day: double vine pattern)

sorry about that . . the flowers for our yard are pretty much over. i think the only thing left to bloom out there are toad lilies, and they are gonna be a while. in fact, because i moved most of them to a new bed in june, we might not even get flowers.

there are days when the thought of the garden is so enticing, that it is all i can do not to drop everything and get out there to enjoy the sun. and then there are days when, despite all my best efforts to be stalwart, i am driven there.

(these would make a pretty necklace if touching them did not make my hands burn)

it’s not like i run out there screaming with my hands over my head because someone just cast the last straw. it’s more like i just have to, the way a sleepwalker does. sunday, for no particular reason was one of those days. i went out there to water, and then noticed that stuff needed to be picked, beds needed weeding, and the lettuce needed to be thinned. i didn’t have time, but was all too happy to stay outside a little longer in the quiet.

now i am a fairly thrifty person, but i’m also just curious. when it came time to thin the chard in may, i tried replanting the little culls in another spot to GRAND failure—every single one of them dropped dead about 5 minutes after i went back in the house. so i thought i’d try it again.
i just wanted to see if it was really a bad idea . . . or my technique.

so this time i did it a little different. i used more watering and i transplanted the culls with healthy plugs of the dirt around their roots, instead of pulling the plants out dirt-free. knock wood, but i think it’s working this time with the lettuce.

at least i don’t see any floppy, withered ones. keep your fingers crossed though (when you’re not knitting of course); they are still in danger.

produce is still being carted into the house faster than i can deal with it most days, but i figure if i do something each day, sooner or later i will catch up with it.

everything has its benefits.

now, on to the knitting. i know that’s what you’re here for . . .

well, my yarn arrived for the Big Secret Project, so i might be scarce for the next two weeks or so (but i’ll try really hard to be here). thankfully, work from our job is slowing to a trickle for a while, which is such a fortunate coincidence that i can’t help but marvel at the beauty of it.

so, not that i had any more free time yesterday than any other day, but i couldn’t help but be completely overtaken with the idea for that simple little stole i described the other day, once i started swatching it. plus, it really helps my anxiety levels to apply myself to a puzzle or a project. and this one had such a simple , clear direction, that i just went with it.
and let me tell you, i am in love.

do i have to go on?? really??

i have had my eye on this stitch pattern for ages and i just knew it would be über-pretty worked up. it hardly needs anything else, but i did add a little edging, with a delicateness that i can’t describe.

i love, love, LOVE the rustic crookedness of the meandering lines and the texture of the leaves which are sliced by double rows of simple decreases. i love it the same way i love the morning glory pattern—big and open-hearted love.

the yarn is deb’s merino laceweight (which is divine) in the rubicund colorway. i wasn’t sure if i should work it on size 6 or size 5 needles, so i did two swatches.

and guess what? they both block out to be the same width, even though i did not stretch them differently. the length on the size 6 swatch is a little different (and there are more rows in that swatch so it’s deceptive).

but get this—they feel different. i can’t explain this. they definitely look and feel different. the only thing i can think that might describe what is happening here is what stephanie always says: swatches lie.

now, i haven’t found that to be terribly true for me . . . i mean needles lie sometimes (they do SO); i have knit things with needles of differen brands that are “the same size” only to find that the gauge changes noticeably. but here we have something different. in fact, i don’t think these pieces are lying, even—no!—they’re being smart asses, that’s what.

i think i prefer the size 6 swatch a little more.

so all in a tizzy to feel closure on something, i wrote up the whole pattern and it just needs to be test knit. i like that.

this is a fairly simple, beginner-to-intermediate lace project. it is knit in two halves from hem to center back and grafted together. it has one main stitch pattern and a simple edge, that makes for a complete repeat of 16 rows. engaging rows . . . i thoroughly enjoy watching this vine pattern descend from the needles.

i might sneak this one onto my needles (even though i’m not supposed to be knitting this), and treat myself to a few rows of it now and then until the Big Secret Project is done.

has anyone seen my countertop?

Posted on 46 CommentsPosted in projects

with no work from my day job this weekend, i made plans on friday to knit ALL weekend long. ahhh . . . it would be great. i pictured all the catching up i would do.

well, i have done some (coming, i promise), but i was hit with a reality check yesterday morning.

(cue in music from psycho here)

an overabundance of produce staring me straight in the face. i tried to deny it by running out to the porch to knit and relax. i sat down and started my swatching (tell you about that in a minute). i reached for my iced coffee (now aspartame free, thanks to prodding from juno) but what do i see on the table?

i ran to the fridge to get a snack and avoid the truth (that’s what snacks are for, right??). searching for just the right thing i found

i whirled around before my eyes began to burn and there they were

ok, okay. hint taken. like many working gardeners, i tend to pick stuff all week long for cooking, and leave most of it to ripen so i can “take care of it when i have free time”.
i am in complete denial that “free time” does not exist for me, and that even if there were any extra time, it would not be “free”. nor would i be “free” to use it any way i wanted.
there was no use for it but to get to work.

i spent most of the rest of the day in the kitchen and cleared away almost all the extra tomatoes, eggplant, and squash lying around. i dried two pans of pear tomatoes. i made a huge pot of ratatouille and put some of that along with tomato purée up in the freezer.
i took a quick nap and then made vegetable broth and a big batch of macaroni and cheese (i didn’t grow that in the garden, but it sounded good and the day was cool).

i still have peppers to stuff and bake, and greens to deal with, but i felt good about it.
til this morning

all these ripened since yesterday. i need a drink

mmmm. and it’s pretty too!

i have been plugging away on the second half of my honeybee stole and i think today i will get into the bee swarm section (that might be my favorite section—of course it is; it’s the smallest one . . . shoot).

it has become a river of gold, a waterfall of honey goodness. it is luscious.

and i worked on the pattern for the big secret project in an effort to quell my nervousness about it. it’s a good-sized chunk of knitting and the yarn has not yet arrived. it has to be done in a couple of weeks. can you spell A-P-O-P-L-E-X-Y?

it’s not that i can’t get the knitting done. it’s the pattern i worry about. and all the stuff that has to go on hold for the marathon knitting. i’m trying to use my time wisely now to get a jump on non-knitting chores like cooking, pattern-writing, and preserving my sanity (what little there is left of it).

but still . . . yarn calls to me and my imagination never shuts down. now i have that red-speckled yarn from kim that has manLace written (dyed?) all over it and i have the BEST idea for it . . . which will have to wait a bit.

and then there is debbieKnitter, who is tired of knitting the japanese feather stole over and over, and wants a similarly pretty, fairly simple stole, with maybe one or two new skillbuilding features.

so i was like, yeah, let’s do it. i have some fearless fibers merino laceweight in a heartbreaking pinky-orange color that i have been anxious to see in a delicate-as-all-get-out stole. i have a stitch pattern i have been dying to use in something like this. let’s put it together real quick.
i swatched it

and love it. now i just have to find a pretty li’l edging and we’re done. simple simple simple. we can even do this in the slightly-heavier briar rose bamboo/merino i got the other day for a larger version. one pattern, two yarns, two sizes.

now if only the big secret project was that easy . . .