Swedish Knitblogger who loves spinning, knitting, dyeing and yarn. I will do some other roundabouts about life too.

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The sock year of 2008 - Looking back!

16 pairs of socks. 32 socks have been knitted this sock year of 2008. I kept the promise to myself and did at least one sock a month, and some. And yes, they are used and loved, and I have realized that socks are fun to knit. Fast, sometimes tricky, and these patterns are very rewarding. I have finished 3 sweaters and one west, 1big lace shawl and 3 other shawls, 2 hats and 1 wristwarmer, and only one pair of mittens. But I have started (and knitted more than 60%) of 8 sweaters whereof two are just at 20%. I guess every second year MUST be a sweater year. Socks are perfect to bring on the train though, and I commute to my Uni - which takes its 1.5 hours one way. I guess in retrospect, Im rather pleased. I had a thing on socks - Now it is gone. But it is funny, for two pairs I really suffered on second sock syndrome, and also, when past the heel it is usually fast as anything. I will definitely knit socks next year - from my books. And instead of (hmmm) knitting a way that box of sock-yarn, it is now filled to the brim from my US visit this summer. Looking back, I think the BEST shopping-experience was Knit-map, a rented Mazda with GPS, and one day hopping yarnshops in San Jose with a Starbucks in my hand. Or the entire vacation just thereafter, with yarnvisits in the Seattle, Vancouver area, climbing mountings and knitting. Yummy! Favourite yarnvisit: Weaving works in Seattle. Favourite yarn. Well, that is a tough call, between lushious Fleece-artist and Handpainted yarns vs Plötulopi from Alafoss Istex that has been the latest fling. But I must say I very much love the Southwest Tradings Bamboo. It has a soft cool feel, that is just like a caress. Well. Yummy knitting year. I also cleaned and reboxed all my yarn in the yarn room. That feels good. Another thing about 2008 is this is where I fell completely into the Starmore chant. Yes, I have bought yarn for 6 sweaters. And Im still working on the first. Also in 2008 I spent a fortune on knitting books. Starmore for sure, but a lot of others - Japanese, many american, Danish and some Swedish. It is the greatest hobby. Can a year be summarized? I had a great knitting year. All over the world. Happy New 2009 to you all! Many happy Knitting hours!

Saturday, December 27, 2008

FO - Lopi Sweater deisgn 19 book 12 - reworked

Finally finished. Still a quick-knit. Alafoss Lopi with the einband "plötulopi" is fast knit - if rolled 3 for 1. Needle 7mm. I did use the general pattern from book 12, design 19, and changed it around. I was Inspired by the pattern Sigridur from the book "The Best of Lopi"... and thus added to pockets and opened the neck. Also I did short-rows to lift the pattern in the neck (4 of them). The neck is a open an high, and will have an added layer of alpaca (so it is a bit smoother to the chin and cheek) on the inside. I can see how it roll now. I also swapped colours around, - adding white (a fourth colour) and just played around in the order. But basically, it is the same pattern. 30 hours of knitting was what Halla suggested, and I thought - that is too much, but no, I think she is really on the spot. Warm and really cosy. Definitely something to wear in the chilly Swedish winter. Not a white Christmas here. Frosty - yes, but I hear that the snow fell elsewhere. So, time to dive into the next Lopi. Well, thank you all for your nice wishes. We have had a great holiday. too much food of course. Relaxing. Fab knitting time. I wish you all a great holiday for you all. All Merry and a Happy New Year!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Winter solastice--- Fruit cake and Ham!

Boiled, than grilled shortly for the crust, is the typical Christmas food for us. Ecological ham.... sorry all veggies. Yummy.. some are VERY tight about it not being eaten before Christmas EVE - which is the BIG day here. Well, the two of us are not THAT traditional. We love the food, skip the tree this year, but got some stars in the window. Today it was so slow.. well, except for the food. Hubby did most anyway. I did a Fruit cake. This year filled - as always with goodies. It is after all 14 wonderful years we have been together me and hubby... it was this magic night - a Christmas party.... 1994 that in the darkest hour love found us!... Great is it not? Ok, for you... here is:
Garngamen fruitcake: Snip in small pieces a small bowl (totally about 1 pound, or should I say approx 500g) of half-dryed figs, apricots, cranberries, rasins) pour half a squeezed orange, and the graded crest of the same together with 100g (a airline bottle) of fine conjac over it... Let stay overnight well tucked in. Then add another half cup of Glögg (mulled wine) over the fruits. mix 250-300g of soft butter in another bowl with farin (dark brown) sugar approximate 1 cup. Whip. Then 4-5 eggs whipped on the side and mix togheter. Now- put half the fruitmix with the sugar/butter and egg-mix. Add about 2 cups of normal flour. Mix well, Add about 200 g of chopped almonds, and whatever nuts you fancy (I had pecan this year) and then mix... Then I added cardemom (a tbspoon) and cinnamon (a tbspoon) add more flour (slowly) not more than 3 cups, until it is a bit more steady.. it should be "clickable" but not too steardy! Then in the oven in an appropriate big ovenproof shape. 175 degrees celcius for one hour. It will not rise much, and should rest (the longer the better!) Then sprits some sugar (we call in florsugar probably from Flour sugar... since it is like powder!) one half eggyolk and this sugar (1 dl which is 3/4 of a cup approximate) mix, and then make a pattern... sprinkle... and I also sprinkled some pomme-granade. This is of course all eaten up, when the cake is wrapped. Enjoy!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Lopi-nr 3 Progress... and the SUN!

I saw the sun today. I had to take a break from my reserach paper writing to snap a shot of the frosting garden, and have a look at the sun hanging over the horizon. I was many weeks since I saw it, and it makes me long for other parts of the world. Now - this is Midday (just past 12 in the noon) when the sun is at is highest.... so yes, not far up north it is no sun. Im happy, my dear brother will emergy from the black north of Sweden and pay me a visit. Well, is not really "sis" who is the magnet, it is Mats and Morgan - a band beyond description of genius. No, not the mainstream music, but for the very advanced, intelligent music experts (they play at Fashing - a jazz/boheme place in Stockholm). Yeah, I think I would like to go to, osmosis you know. Anyhow, that made me panic-knit my second...hmm christmas-present last night. I sure miss him. The artist from the north. They have a meter snow (to the waist!), so Im told. Anyhow, knitting goes particular slow, too much work to be finished before Christmas. But Im getting there. Just need to try and meet my Lopi supplier, Halla. Anyhow This is the Third Lopi progress. I have knitted a sleeve, and the beginning of the body, past the first decoration. Im now in limbo if I should put in pockets, of if it just is too bulky! Well. we will see! Take care out there... do not push in crowds - Be there - the best present you can give your loved ones! Well, lunch break over, now it is back to paperwriting. Kudos to you too! And I DO LOVE COMMENTS ;-)

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Santa Lucia

Well, here it is dark. Therefore we celebrate Lucia! The Saint and patron of the light, blond longhaird you "brides" in white dresses, with candles in the hair... much like angles they thread the dark and semi-cold Stockholm (no snow - extra dark). Im working the entire weekend, so no fun updates, and hmmmm, sorry but the Lopi on my dear, I confess It was already some years old. The new Lopi's are not done yet. Much fun during Christmas. We all need light and hope. By this, I send you wishes wherever you are!

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Oh boy--- soon it is Nobel times....

This years nobel-prize goes to.....
.... My Husband. He wins
..the economic prize (thanks for keeping order of housebills!) the scientific prize (my own private wikiper and know-it-all, yes, he beats any gameshow always!) and also the Nobel prize house awards goes to him for most supporting and hugging loving person...., Best food, and Best Caffe Latte.
The Nobel prize for BEST YARN I award right now (very biased and just right now) to Plötulopi. I must admit, when it is cold here it is COLD, and sitting and hacking makes me even colder. So, there was no excuse to start widing plötulopi and dig in. So - I have faith - I have already knitted one cardigan "almost"...but still need one more cake to finish (and yeah, the steek....!(I need a new sewing-machine dear Santa!) But, Im still having a lot of Plötulopi, so now Im on the second sweater (not cardi, Im cold! Need it NOW! One sleeve done, reaching waist any minute now...). I also have started to think about Christmas presents. My Nobel-prize winner (see above winner) is content with everything. OK Slippers... but then? And the big stuff - a new kitchen, is not too easy to fix. And it is time to start and think of my dear brother, he has is big 50s birthday here in January... but he would not like Plötulopi, since "not scratcy" is his device... But Lopi sweaters, they are sure warm! And so fun to make. Love the yoke. No not the joke ;-) The Yoke... Cannot wait to get there! Brrr, Cold, need to knit fast!

Monday, December 01, 2008

FO- Vortical SoX

So, I put in a finish and did the December Stickamera SockKAL socks, called Vortical from Knotions. It is slanted, it is fast, and I loved it. So fun. Very similar socks to Sundrae Hydrangea Sock I did (the slanted thing) but this was really fun since they were slanted in different directions. The great yarn - Soutwest Trading Bamboo 100% was interesting to knit with. Soft, fluffy, but very stringy.... And, it was so tight with yarn I had to use the rest of the cast on to finish the toe... Great addition to usable socks. So, now I have to go back in the KAL and try and motivate myself for the November sock, which I have skipped. Otherwise Im complete for a pair-a-month! Now I can finally dig in to my Sweaters.... and UFO's.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

FO: Hourglass Socks

The Hourglass Socks are finished. Three pictures with and without flash, inside and outside. Same socks. And - the warm colour is probably the one most close to reality. It is just too dark to really get the pictures right. These socks almost broke my aim to do all socks for the StickaMera SockKAL. But Im not really giving up yet. Still hanging in there. These were knitted in Alpacka SOX yarn. A strange yarn, with the fuzziness of Alpacka, but strong as the nylon few procent to make it durable. But, no sproing, no elastisity. Perfect October sock colours, soft and nice.... But I also suspect they are a little to big, and also hard to shrink. So, another choice of yarn had probably made this a smoother ride. And I also have another hank of this yarn, other colourways.
Otherwise, I wonder what is really good sockyarn. Also, the socks should not only be pretty, so heavy cabling on the foot? No, that will not fit in normal shoes. I went for socks I could wear. So, the choice is limited. Of course I want them pretty. But next year Im picking socks I have chosen. Maybe do my own patterns... well, the year is not over so I still have to knit on. My cold is still holding a firm grip, congesting my head, making me cough, and filling my lunghs.... with... no, not air!
There are so many great patterns out there. So, time to cast on again.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

To you Heidi: More about Knitting books...

With inspiration from Heidi's comment on last post, I guess I should have a look at some more books: Favorite are anything Alice Starmore: Scottish Collection, especially. Musty, complicated and just wonderful fair-ilse as well as the fab pcitures in Tudor Roses, Celtic Collection and the great know-how in her Fair-Isle. Aran is on the way. Best Swedish book is: Britt-Marie Christoffersson with Svenska Tröjor (Swedish Sweaters) - also translated to English! Best german speaking book: Oma's Strick- geheimnisse meaning, Grandma's knitting secrets (or something). There you have all swatches you ever want, great knitting patterns. Also "Heirloom Knitting" with Sharon Milles should be in your library for lace galore. Then "Håndplagg" by Heidi Fossnäs (Norweigan) together with S. Hisdahls "Poetry of Stiches" and the great "Norsk Strikkedesign". Ahhh, those are books with fab knits, pictures to druel for and.... Also Love Debbie Newtons "Knitware Design" or was it Designing knitware? That was a interesting read. She knows her stuff. Otherwise Im not buying very much now days. (since I have it all ;-) The best patterns is on Raverly - and is free. And after a while, the magazines will keep you up to fashion. Anyhow, a good fair-ilse, aran and some great yarn, will ensure every project will survive fashion. For fiber freaks Handpainted Country is cool...Well, I also have the real Hermanna Stengård in my library.. Very old Swedish knitting. Avoid books, well DoRedo is definitely one of them. I actually saw some japanese cut up a Bohus sweater on one of their workshops (at the museum). It is like cutting up Picasso, because he is productive. Oh, of course the Bohus books are worth everything.. And the new Binge is not bad either. To teach knit in books are a waste of space. There is tons of videos on the net. Books should be patterns and pictures, and maybe some stories. Any "copy heritage from a place Im not" is also pretty lame.... exploitation. But I guess we forgive some of them for bringing us patterns otherwise locked into a Estonian mind. Like the "scandinavian knitware" from Starmore, such a laugh, she had no idea where she was, writing it- Ok, she compensated later. But do not waste any money there. Pricilla Gibson's cartoons sweaters are much better, but still a bit off, or Nordic Knitting, by Viebke Lind...(was it?),is quite ok. The "1000 patterns" is bad, it seems to have dropped the batch of knitting cards, since all places and patterns are in a mix avoid. Again. What is good and bad is taste. We all loved the Loop-d-loop knitting book, and disapponted on the crochet... I think it is hard to do great over and over. I mean Wendy has a great blog, but her book is a sleeping pill (sorry). I know exactly what book gets my juices flowing, and lately, I seem to have all of the ones I want. I realize Im over-booked. Also, Over-stashed. That means I can hibernate in my yarn room for years, and become one of those old ladies, with outdated patterns that will rant in the home k1, 2tog,yo, K3, p2, k3....like a mantra. Ha, what a sight. Jolly knitting!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

OT: Books and Cold...

Garden today. Snow, cold, and with the "blue light" that is typical of Swedish winter. It is one hour before the sun goes does in the afternoon that has this mysterious light. It reflects the way we look at white. I was out shopping for gifts, when I found a new Swedish book "Sticka Mera", containing my friend Nicoles fab knits. The book otherwise the usual lecturing for beginners and too many swatches...but a a copy-cat Bohus was not too shabby, as well as the some of the other sweaters. Nicole shined, her beads were visible! The other book - designing a Knitware collection - had all the inspiration I desier. Of course geared at commersial machine-knits, it had all the essential designers, all the 1900 knitware influences, with many inspiring colour combinations. Found a pair of really complicated socks in intarsia the inspired my juices. Or... was the the mounth full of Lindt 85% choclate, with hubby's best Caffe Latte (you know, done with that special ingredient - love!)... Hmm. I guess Im so passed the usual knit-books. More of "very advanced knitting" please. Must I write it myself? No, I have no time. Anyhow, here is winter, and the usual cold is coming - as always - when the temprature drops below freezing. Oh? You did not get that? Cold outside AND I have also got the cold ;-), Attjo! Typical... when the deadlines are slamming around me like the wind is howling outside. Ohh knit, comfortable knit. Where are those days you were allowed to be sick, and not had to work?

Monday, November 17, 2008

Troll-times or what...

We have a great troll in the house! Done by an aunt of my hubby. I think he is up to something. I have trolls in my knitting. I just seem not to get finished with anything. And I have been working all Sunday (real work - not knitting!). Ok, we had a sauna too - it is just so fab... and we put in the scent of Eucalyptus, and now we really have a great plan for our Australian trip ;-) What a memory trip to go back and visit the places we lived and loved. But knitting? Now, the more I see my huge stash, the more Im deciding to "never again" buy any more yarn or fleece (maybe with some very few exception, such as opossum, buffalo and vicuna...maybe I will not stay true to this.) hmm... But Im getting challenged of using my stash. Sorry yarn shop owners, but I will not be there. I guess Im almost on the edge to change my name. To stashbuster or something more appropriate. I think what really got me was my 50 or something cones of indicida alpaca and Norsk spelsau and another norveigan yarn. It is crazy. Half of it is thin enough for my machine, but - I will not wear clothes enough during my lifetime. So, Im going to really focus on doing fab garments of what I have. The strange (!) really situation is that I still (and always) do not think I have enough and the "just right" sweater to use, but I realize, I actually wear my knitwear out (now 6 sweaters needs repair, if I just can find the right repair-yarn). Well, Im still in fight with my october sock... half of the last sock to go.. sohoho slow. I have been knitting on my Lopi. And today it snowed for the first time. It did not stay, but Im just saying WARM SWEATER please... NOW! Trolls, dont mess with my knitting!

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Black times.....

When you need a flash to take a picture outside (midday!) you know it is getting close to the darkest time of the year here in the northen hemisphere. It is black outside so early. It is rainy, chilly, and just above freezing. The very dark snuggly improvised pullover I started will not be ready yet in any reachable time.. with its 2mm knitting needles. I also mix in silk thread of lime and turquoise, with a machine-knitting yarn (thin) to make the wonderful yarn from Fleece-artist to last as long as possible. Soft it is, one ball Cashlana, 2 balls "2nd sorting"....unnamed.... One of the "finds" in this summer in the "Seattle, Vancouver shopping spree. All my current mood colours. Sinister dark, with the bright light shining trough. A reflection of me. Nothing seems to go my way. Research is slow and problematic, work is problematic, the home is in a mess, and my hoyas are dying, and I feel I have not called any of my friends or relatives back for a very long time. And even the wonderful pink Denise needles on the bottom (Islandic lopi cardigan) BROKE on me. It was the long cable, so the needles are still ok, but anyhow. Im also finally officially super tired of knitting socks. I have been struggling the last two pairs, since you all know I work hard to do my sock a month KAL. The last energy gone when finding yet another "crossing stitch/cable" pattern for November sock. Knee high. I still have half a sock left from October. Im so behind....The knitted Dress which I really knitted up with a great knitting -itch (Stickig!) in double meaning. Both did I knit like a maniac doing it, and yes, the acrylic gives it a bit of an -itch too. A great Garngamen improvised pattern. Still fits. It is a manifest of my former "knitting" craze from the 70s (or was it 80s?). Sigh, I do not remember. Even my memory is black. (That is why they call it black-out.) Well, I got really sick on my 2 rows a day, on all my knits... progress is so slow and Im just jumping around, starting new, instead of finishing any of the the 30 + UFO's. So I thought a "quick" yet stash-busting and very warm cardigan from Lopi nr 23 (pattern no 1) would solve all my problems. HA! It is heavy, it is 3 strands of Plötulopi- from Halla "home-shop" in Täby ;-) and I just confirmed the pattern will not fit (it is Alafoss Lopi)... So adjustments ahead for yoke.. and also, the dark-blue will no be enough... Sigh. Yet another project - with the purpose of being smooth and problem-free turns on me. Black magic. Karma please Forgive me. At least Im not sick. That is a lot to be thankful for. I just feel so black. Knitting godesses! I will repent. I will finish sock. Next year - NO KAL's! I will be "knit-alone" instead of "knit-along"! Easy to say. I rather search patterns in Ravelry and look at all others blogs, and fantastic accomplishments. than chase those needles that slip out in the sock, dropping stitches again.. It is called hour-glass, well the hours are running away. Im getting older.. Black times....

Monday, October 27, 2008

FO:Oak Leaf Socks

Last night I finished! The August entry of the Swedish SockKAL SockKlubb Oak Leaf Socks are done. Of course in the perfect yarn for the season Noro Kureyon Sock Yarn. I also managed to get them colour matched (it took some tricks on the one toe being a bit browner, but that hardly shows!)
Anyhow, it was a slow knit, even if the pattern was rather easy to remember, for some reason I had to struggle a bit with it. But the result is pleasing!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Pictures from India...

Yes, I was there! Very hot and 7 hours busride.. But now I have been to the wonder Taj Mahal.And - Yes, I am knitting socks at the Qutb Minar.. which is also on the photo below. You realize my camera is full, but these goodies I had to show.

Indi-Top in Pink-October!

Started in India, a cool summer-top in Cotton, silk (Rowan summer tweed) and Giotto from Colinette. All bought on SALE in Garnverket (both the Stockholm and Linköping shop!) Of course it is PINK in honour of breast-cancer awareness month! And - no, I did not succeed to finish it. Maybe because there was ton's of distractions ;-) and.... Im still (!) working on the oak-leaf socks. They were for some reason slow. But this got knitted toghether on the plane rides. Im back home. And my two bathrooms are done. Just fab, so I have been taking a hot sauna-steamer, bubbled the jacuzzi-bath and just enjoyed the luxury needed when swapping from a not so clean 33 celius (New Dehli) to a fall-storm Stockholm of around 8 celcius. Frost expected this week. I guess this goes in the stash for next vacation in heat - plane-ride (and yes, the needles past a very close uptight inspection in Frankfurt) or next summer. Back to the socks... It is Socktober you know.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

OT (no knitting) -Report from India

After a great week - first visiting Pune (where this picture is taken - thanks Bernard), and then roaming around New Dehli. I must say Im both in awe (lotus temple, etc) and in resignation (pollution, and germs) with things here. This is normal trash picture from side of the road. They act medival, with no regards for consequences. India looks like a trash-dump! Even when we were eating in small aluminium boxes on the hired bus, the busdriver basically dumped this outside the bus on a stop - at a very clean and fancy hotel. Ok Inside these places - inside the gate of hotels, the workplace etc, it is just clean as a whistle, and after this messy week in the eastern Dehli, I must say the modern IT buildings where my work is placed -Gurgaon, is tons better...Anyhow, organised chaos. I learned that a five minute "bathroom break" is easily 1 hour stop, with "snacks" turning into a full buffe.... Maybe because we had great organizers. Going on the wrong (ok left) side of the road zig-zacking between cars, small taxis, people crossing, no respect for lanes, bycycles, cows, lorrys in a Honking mess of 17 million people makes it an adventure just to go anywhere or do anything. Especially on your own. But mostly - Indians will take care of you. Really. They are so spiritual and nice. I have had one hour shopping, hardly any sleep, and today shopping would be possible, but all malls are closed tuesdays to save energy (ok, they are trying!). Having spend life in a internet-less area, with the power timing out every half our for 5 minutes (and sometimes not always going on immediately)... well, lets say it is hot here. and if you were not tired before - the heat will get to you. Im glad Im now in an interent zone, giving this to you. Thankfully, aircondition or fans is almost everywhere, making conversations unbearable. My conference last week, was partly in Pune, and then at Raj Ghat where the conference and big meeting of 41 countries were held. (Pic: Im on the right!) Ok, we could not STAY at the place (as originally planned) for goverment were wiser and offered the place to my Biggest spiritual guide and guru - the Vietnamese Zen Buddist Munk nicknamed Thay occupided the place with his followers. I just wished I had no duties, and actuallyI was invited to join in the Ashram with them, but that will be AFTER my PhD... LOL! I had to do with other spiritual fun parts..And on the Sunday we were visiting the Taj Mahal in Agra, a neat busride 17.9 km from New Dehli - and with their roads taking 4 hours - but reality - starting 6 o clock in the morning - we reach Agra at 1 in the afternoon. Well.... Now I belong to the people who have seen the Taj... A big marble achievement. Fab and that they built this so long ago. Of course my I got Deli-belli, and only Immodium acted like a temporary plug. Can you imagine sitting for HOURS on a bus with an uneasy belly? I mean, you do not know explosions if you have not had one. Im of course a lot better compared to last time visiting Chennai, when I had to battle both ends ;-) So, when we were visitning Qutb Minar and the Iron Pillar my belly erupted. I spare you the details, but I tell you, you do not want to be anywhere than in an very expensive hotel when this happens. The Qutb Minar is such an achievement like Lego, built with no mortar, concrete or anything. And is a solar device. Just amazing. The guide was really funny, he said Indians were really thankful to the English... from where they got: Administration, Tea, Cricket and tipping ;-) The Ironpillar is just an old iron pole, that is supposed to bring luck if you hold your arms around it backwards. Now it is protected (so you cant have luck) for fear of the residue with break the iron down, but many believe the oil of peoples hands is the reason it is not rusting. Well, Im no expert there. Pollution is pretty bad in Dehli, and tourist eruption definitely adds!! Anyhow, The Fashion week in India is colorful. Check out: Manish Arora and his Clowns. That sums up the creative chaos. All the fantastic SARI's the women are so colourful... But they have to be, to be seen in this haze of diesel. I have been knitting on my sock and at least inspired the Norweigan candidate to go for socks (hey - she had just not thought about looking for free patterns on the web!), but have not found any yarn yet or beads... which I know India has to a bargain price and in loads. Last day and chance tomorrow, but Im not sure hunting around the market with a big suitcase is the best. Maybe If I find a great taxi-driver....Well, Im ok! No worries except the mygg/mosqito?, ah.. you know those biting little suckers.... that could contain malaria??? Yes I have been in the country. I have bites all over - even if I was covered with spray... So far so good. Lets hope for the best! I just have to end this with a quote from Nhat Hanh: "Breathing in, I calm my body. Breathing out, I smile. Dwelling in the present moment, I know this is a wonderful moment!" from Peace is Every Step - The Path of Mindfulness in Everyday Life! Hugs from a very cool, clean and somewhat odd small hotel in Gurgaon, India.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Knitting in the airport..Pink October

Amazingly enough, Im sitting at Arlanda airport on the way to Dehli - India via Frankfurt for a 10 day worktrip. This week was visiting London (and Coventry), but I had really no time, so I had to rush to Stash Yarns, to get 1 ball of Artyarns - Silk Mohair in 106. I have brought the oak socks with me, but not on the plane... metallic sockneedles in thin size, will cause problems. Instead I brought Summer Tweed yarn from Rowan in Pink - and Colinette Giotto in cerice. Pattern? That is what I can contemplate on today in the air....Its got to be pink, after all - October is Breat Cancer awareness month - celebrated in Pink. It is sale yarn, hopefully the top will be completed, so that I have something to wear at least some of the days. It is also Socktober, and I will definitely finish my september socks at least. I must focus to get the Hour glass sock - the October done, but - I admit, it had no room in the suitcase, since I brought water and some food for 10 days with me. Last time I got really sick, this time I will do my best to stay off any pre-peeled Mangos.. but yummy were they good. Hubby is home and watching the finishing touches on the renovation. Well, the India trip will also contain a short stop in Pune, and hopefully the weekend trip to Taj Majal will work out (and Agra). So sorry for no pics this time, and - I better find a transfer cable for the small camera - or you will miss out on the India pictures too, but at least you know you out there - my faithful readers - what Im up to. I have not abandond you. It is just hectic as ever. Hugs.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Just progress... going slow!

In Noro sock yarn again..., Im doing the oak leaf socks for the StickaMera KAL. Slow, so slow. But it was not that hard when I finally sat down and actually read the piece with some glasses on (hmm), row by row. Now it feels better. Yes dear Sue, the shawl "Noro hugs me" from last week is a huge long "rectangle". Great to wrap several turns around any cold bodypart. I have been a bit chilly, the cold is still not really ok. This summer passed too fast. Already chill in the air. Im knitting on several things, the Starmore Luskentyre has now just got there sleeve steeks casted on, but the colour is so spring, but a fun, slow intelligent knit. The Bohus Wild Apple has got some new rows, and has "just the right colours" but feels increadible boring compared to the good fair-isle. Then I have some new rows and beads on the lace top... it more and more reminds me of the sea, and now I have added glass beads that will glitter. The sea-spray when the waves break with be the lighter ball of yarn (not in the picture.) Now, that will also take a long time since I realized how fun it was with beads, and the lace goes slow. But a perfect knit for airplanes - durable and in large bamboo needles, it is great to use. Of course this piece is really my own pattern. This is on the first ball of Colinette yarn Parisienne, and I have only one other in the same colour. Then a much lighter version. So in three balls, a very lacy beaded top to put "on top" of a blouse. It will be fun. Having surrounded myself in my yarnroom, I have now matched yarn and pattern from both books and magazines. I have also great plans for the 2 odd balls of Cashlana from Fleeceartist. These soft colourful yarns would be great with in a big pattern with a dark (black?) background. I hardly have any black yarn. So, finding a super quality merino with cashmere with the right thickness will be an adventure. And pattern. Maybe a west. Well. I love the yarn dreams. These designing dreams keep me occupied, and are great to fall to sleep with. Take care out there!

Monday, September 22, 2008

FO- Noro Kochoran wrap-around shawl

It is great to grab three hanks of one of my favourite yarns "Noro Kochoran" with angora (!) among other (wool...) and it is colour Purple nr 11. Having had a bad cold, I needed something to wrap around me, and I already had a night wrapped in this (ok, it was at a hotel).... when my cold "back-lashed". Otherwise I wrap myself with Hubby ;-) The chilli autumn/fall time immediately calls for sweaters to be finished. But Im knitting socks mostly. This was just a Quickie project. Anyhow, the unmasting (of the sailboat) did not unmast - since the motor is not running. Sigh. Broken. The kitchen zink is - which made a puddle in the "temporary" kitchen. Sigh Broken. Bathrooms are still in the making. And I put in an entire day of cleaning yesterday. It was long overdue, wiping, dusting polishing. My trip to Berlin (or Potsdam) this week might shrink, since there are no hotelrooms available. Well, otherwise, coughing my way through the day, Im ok. Hope you are too.....?

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

FO- Noro neck piece!

Noro again.. This is a one ball called "Tube solid" yarn. That I bought a long time ago...It has been sitting and filled up my stash just a few years too long. It matches a Noro Sweater that I knitted for dear hubby, that he never liked - and I of course took over and wears all the time. So, I thought I could "spif" it up with a new neck-piece - all matching. It is knitted on 15 needlesize (which was too small! yarn requires 20-30 MM!) say no more. But it took me almost one hour ;-) It is made so I can pull it through two holes..... for a perfect fit. Anyhow, I think my cold is turning. But Im also cold, so yesterday when doing my slow Luskentyre fair-isle rows, I just started to wind up my 3 hanks of Noro Kochoran, in colour 11... really purple, red, some green grey and blue... well, a bit darkish....
And continued to knit like a maniac. So, another shawl has started, that will be warm to drape over the neck. Anyhow, Im a bit tired. Did not get much sleep and early the drilling in concrete have me shaking. The walls are coming down. The kitchen wall. Hugs anyhow. And a warm neck will make no cold sneak in!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

FO- Spring Forward socks!

Spring forward, a fun knit that resulted in Sproing sproing elastic socks. The August entry for the "StickaMera SockKlubb". I had the luck to pick up the original yarn "Socks that rock" in the colour "Gypsum" when I was overthere, so it was a bit unusual to knit with the real thing. And is it a soft, elastic yarn too.... I think this will be almost "too tight"... snug, or should a say, great for flying ;-)
The Clematis is still flowering its last flowers in this rainy autumn, and husband is taking the short break of rainshowers to move the lawn, that has grown beyond hope.
Me, I got hit by the cold, and my nose is running, my throat is throbbing and aching, and Im sipping Green tea, with honey and lime. I have had a good week, except yesterday, when the cold hitted hard. And for you renovation freaks, the bathroom nr 1 is getting almost ready. It looks so nice!
Hugs out there (virtual ones do not carry germs......).

Friday, September 05, 2008

ECF - Beach at Kalaloch, WA, US

Sun captured, in salty sea water, it was so windy... but we were on a wonderful vacation.. far far away from home. Here (back home) the turmoil is at is peak ;-) and sauna..., shower and most of the tiles in place. Somehow we I have not landed. Last weekend in London, and yesterday and today in a sunny Finland. I feel good. Busy, flying, working, hacking, with a dusty home, overripe red-current, high grass and lots of weeds, in shower rainy Sweden, and the last roses still showing their grace. It is just so amazing. TGIF. Now, Im knitting on so much different things, nothing is moving forward. I need to land... And show some great yarns for you.. and progress shots. Take care out there. Let our knitting needles click like sandals on beach stones.

Monday, September 01, 2008

What is going on?

No, this is a pic from this spring. Life is in turmoil. Handy Polish craftsmen are now in the "setting up the tiles" phase. Have you ever heard what a stone cutter sounds like? Especially after sitting 3 hours and waiting for the mess at Heathrow to clear up (well, it turns out the Queen do NOT want planes over her house, so they cannot use all runways, hence waiting 45 planes (3 hours) IN the plane before liftoff..... of course they blamed thunder or something....Hah... it was just the normal english cats n dogs.... Well... To put it midly - I DID NOT SLEEP ENOUGH! Yepp, I have been again at Windsor park this weekend. Worked on the weekend. And I WISH I was sailing with hubby. But Im shortly back, so Im answering Heidi's challenge (a bit late, and not in full:) 5 things I should do today: Well it is a bit late to tell that... I did clean the fishtank, booked my trip to Finland, and Linköping, and Potsdam, watered my Hoya's (plants), Had a go at Wii fit, and of course, one thing I still have to do is hang the wash and pack my bags for tomorrow with the food box (how utterly boring my life sounds!)..... What did I do 10 years ago? Hmm, september 1 1998? I would guess, I worked Like a dog as a manager.. Places I have lived? Sundsvall, Karlstad, Uppsala, Kungsholmen and Älvsjö (in Sweden), Fresno, CA in US, and Melborne, Australia (both just on Carlton and in Nrt Balwyn). All more than a year! Five things I would do if I was a billionaire? Travel the world in 1st class, get a personal chef, trainer housekeeper, gardenmen and all that staff to pamper me, hubby, mom, brother, and all my family and friends... Quit my job to start and become a designer (Philip Starck ? Terence Conran? No - Garngamen! hohaha.....also invest in better exercise programs ;*) Start a fund and place the money, start and support a number of charities, but specially invest in family and friends. Send it on? Anyone can grab it! Anyhow... Im definitly knitting socks.."Spring forward is on its second"... and Im moving along on some lace-stuff.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

FO Pomatomus Sock

Pomatomus from Knitty. A great pattern not really showing as well as I hoped in this patterned yarn. Anyhow, the Southwest Trading Bamboo, is really a great thick silky yarn. I actually liked it so much that I got two more of them, in different colourways. This is the July StickaMera SockKlubb entry. And Im really working fast on the August pattern as well. Olympics is over, and we have been sailing this weekend. Great! After one week I realize I have worked a lot this summer. It is already preparing for the winter. Chasing deer in the garden. So these socks are a bit big but really soft. I think this would be a great yarn for a summer top. But that is a bit late now. More thinking of the warm sweaters and cardis that needs to be knitted. And should I attempt another Lace shawl? Hmm. London next weekend - why have conferences on the weekends? So there will be loooong working week(s) here. I hope I have time to blog.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

FO-Sideways Socks and progress on Aachen Bliss

Sideways socks in wonderfully handpainted yarn "Nickerjack" from UK (Stitches). The pattern is a Drops (Garnstudio) pattern, but I must admit, it was quick and fun to knit, and they fit great. I really love them. Initially I thought that the seem was a bit bulky, and there is a lot of sewing of that seem, but wearing them you do not notice almost anything. So, it have my thumbs up. The Clematis Jackmanii blooms its best on a Salix. So this was the 2nd Juni sock ;-) Now Im just "3 socks behind and some" for the StickaMera SockKlubb "do them all!" Well, had 1.5 hours on the Wii-fit today. much better than yesterdays 18 minutes. Husband claimes it already shows (after 9 days....maybe a bit). At least Im not totally wobbly. Btw a new butterfly in my garden (getting drunk on overdone cherries. Anyhow, thanks for your encouraging comment. I was in Fresno, CA as an exchange studen actually - Class of 80! How great. Bullard High. Anyhow, I have knitted a bit on my "Aachen Bliss" which was started on the plane to Aachen in a Debbie Bliss yarn (bought on sale!) I think it is a bit tight, and I decided this was a good sweater I can practice steeking - So I might cut it up and add on a bit in the front. But I have not decided yet. Im also conteplating frogging this back down to the sleeve-holes, and then Really moving them a bit to the front. The problem is really me being lazy to measure it up correctly. I should have done that long time ago, instead I knitted on like there is no tomorrow. But there is. A wonderful tomorrow. We are finally having a bathroom IN the house (so we do not have to go outside in the snow in the winter - to take a shower hmmm)...
That feels so good. But it is raining and rather quiet here. On the Stove the red currant lemonade is cooking for my brother. "Saft"! Well, take care and have a great week.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Last report from North America and FO: Seattle Noro Sweater

Mt St Helena without its top. I was actually in US as an exchange studen when this happened. Big drama. I even have a little bag of dust from it, that a friend brought me. Cool to see for real. Well, US is really floating into the background now, when the handimen (polish) are making a bathroom outof nothing. It sure sounds like a Vulcano eruption.... and also a lot of dust... But great guys. Silent, hard-working and smelling good. A handiman that smells good is a good omen. I do not want to start my bathroom with B.O. of someone! Sorry.... Seinfelt on telly.... hmm... Anyhow, I sort of realized why no one is anywhere in Sweden is because of the Olympics.... I have totally missed that notion, and yet I hold a Goldmedal from my winter olympics, when I knitted a coat. Well, Im just struggling with my sock KAL in slow motion. Actually I finished a pair of socks today (but I keep them for tomorrow!). Too be really cool, this picture is taken in Olympia (haha....) - the name of the pennisula and national forest not far from Seattle. Ok, it is "near"... since we are rummaging the beach. It is so amazing. So much great beach and so cold water. Poor west coast of US. But the sun is great. And as you can see everything is BIG in the US. Every tree, every beach, every meal. So it is not the most flattering posing in my fishished sweater I do.... I knitted it on the vacation. It was really fun. The Seattle Noro Sweater - or is it Noro Seattle Sweater? Of course an invented desigh. Yarn bought at Knittery (on SALE!) and finished during the vacation, and shown next to the hotel pool. It is actually some wool, and it is very warm, even if most is cotton. I was worried about the neck, but that really worked out. I have enough to make a headband and maybe a net-bag as well... we see. Ipod cosy? Hmmm.... At least I got some knitting done... And a whole lot of yarn. and some really great memories. I love the walks in the forest...Sorry for ranting... I should bring you the picture of the sushi-pigout before we went. Also Seattle had some great dim-sum, but no real Curry Laksa. We guess no malaysian lives in Seattle (and drives a resturant...). Happy enough we got that confirmed on google, the new travel companion ;-) Well, we are happily home as you guessed. Im back knitting socks and sweaters. Soon back to work. Hope you enjoyed the trip..... I think the yarn will fill the year in many ways.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

North American West Coast (4) Vancouver, B.C. Canada

Butchard gardens. As I remember it, one of the highlights 25 years ago, when I was touring the North American continent for three month (on my own!). Today it is a spectacle. Too expensive, too many people that pushed their carts in your ankles, and too much summerflowers in bad taste colour combinations. I realized that I have become a garden diva too. Some years ago I was a secretary in the Stockholm garden lovers society (STA) and I guess learning about plants, and frequent visits to the master class - all the english wonderful gardens have made me yet another "besserwisser". I realize plantcolours are taste, but it seemed so wasteful to have 200 similar plans in two colours, instead of having a mix of perennials with different highlighting times. The japanese garden was fantastic though, and this border (picture)was an exception. But, after this, I was really sad. Not at all the tranquil stroll to grasp beauty, but shuffeling and shoving with a screaming eyesore of plantings. Rows, yikes. So Husband was a gem, and took me to the nearest yarnshop, Beehive in Victoria. Absolutely a solace. I bought much too much of the Canadian yarns "Handpainted" and hmm....what was that other copying colour.... hmm F... something. Oh boy was I happy. I was stroking my yarn when we went to the super good japanese dinner, before hitting rainy Vancouver. That is how I remember it last time, it was cats and dogs all then time then, 25 years ago, and still is. Gothenburg is not even near. Bergen might be. Anyhow, Vancouver was work for me, but instead of visiting Whistler as we booked, the road had diappeard behind a rockfall, so the way around was 9 hour drive instead of 2, so we cancelled. And again, husband allowed me to visit three shops. The first. Birkeland brothers was not a hit, but had a lot of fleece, and some discounted second sortings of Handpainted yarn..... (yummy)... ps. Avoid the husband. He was almost insulting. But Wife great!... Then just up the road Main Street was the greatest shop, Three bags full. Filled with goodies. And great people there. Look both for inside and outside pics. To the right is supposedly the lace knitter expert. Now, I forgot the name. I was still checking here fab shawls in the store and getting lost in the yummy lace yarn. And Kogiou and ....They were even so nice that they actually so nice that they recommended a competitor! That is what I call service! I asked them if there was one other yarnshop we should visit in Vancouver, what would that be? And they said - Urban yarns. For that, Go to Three Bags Full! Great yarnshop. Great expertise, super yarn. Honest people. Now Urban Yarns is located in a great area, and the shop was packed. And - they have a sale. I think that really is nice ;-) So I found some great baby alpacka for mittens, and also some more daisy circular, and some more treasures. Wahaha... just wait. I have not even STARTED with pictures of all the yarn I bought. I feel I sure have spent all my leasure money for this year. I hearby promise I will not buy any more yarn 2008 - UNLESS I need to finish a piece! And I promised mom some sockyarn!
Not even an exception for a Bohus kit, sigh. This means, no yarn festival this fall either. Yes, It is patient husband outside Urban yarns. And he just beat my record in Wii Fit Slalom. Sigh. 2 more days of vacation. And I have lost a sock somewhere.. in my house. And I need it to measure to the first one. Well, I think this almost - bring us to the last chapter in our vacation..Still one more to come. Hugs out there!

Monday, August 11, 2008

NAWC (3): Mt Rainer, and Pomatomus sock started

Ok, do you see me in the first picture? With wonderful Mt Rainer above. We were superlucky and had the best weather for out climb quite a bit up that mountain (4 hours up, 1.5 down!)over snow and just fantastically beautiful sunshine day. Im not fit to it, but again, Im a stubborn willpowered girl, so all nice americans thought I needed their sunscreen, well, I tell you, bad shape. (btw..But already 3 days on the Wii fit is making wonders. It is just so fun. I had no idea I could love exercise!) Anyhow, Mt Rainer is just near Seattle. Clean air and silent. We slept over and enjoyed a greattalk about the 3 tribes of native americans in the area. Ok, I was finished with my Noro Cardigan by this time, and started on the July Knitty-sock Pomatomus in South West tradings Bamboo yarn. I can tell you, I should have gone done one size in yarn and needle, but I would not know until the first sock was done. I know this is a super popular pattern, but for some strange reason, it is not mine. Maybe it steals to much concentration from the beautiful surroundings, and I do mistakes and have to frog. The yarn is yummy soft and such a hit, I bought some more balls. Approx 14 USdollars for a ball.To be honest, the pattern and the stranded yarn here did not fit together either. This is a pattern that should be knitted with a one colour yarn in my opinion. But definitely not super easy. Ok, typical Yarn Harlot pictures. But it was fun. I really got the crowed laughing and definitely some ladies nodding in secret understanding. "Us knitters togheter. Im so amazed with the US knitting crowed. It is such a big hit - and such comeradery. I feel welcome and apprechiated. Again, a great time hereand this few days in the mountains was actually at the end of our journey, (ok Im no telling this in order, sorry)... but really was great. A kickstart in the new and healty lifestyle of garngamen. Well, I do have more pictures than the blogger can hold. Im getting more and more concerned I have to move from here. Well, we see what is happening. I feel I spend most of my time in Ravelry anyhow. And knitting of course. That is the minus. to much time on computer - to little knitting and exercise. But, this vacation has been such a rest, a kick into new life. I feel soo much better. Really slept well. And up early, and no problem falling asleep as Im usually having. I guess I have stressed down a bit. Take care and more to come.....