Knitting, Dogs and Life on the High Plains

Tuesday, August 29, 2006
Favorite Online (Downloadable) Pattern Source?

I love to be able to buy patterns online and download them almost as soon as I pay for them. So many of the online designers have way more fashion sense and (and way more commmon sense!) than the designers hired by big yarn companies.

I'm wondering if I've missed any really good sources. I just discovered Zephyrstyle last week so I figure there are others out there I don't know about.

Here are the ones I regularly take a look at to see what's new:

The Garter Belt
Knit and Tonic
The Knitting Vault
The Knitting Zone
My Fashionable Life
Pink Lemon Twist
See Eunny Knit
Chic Knits

Am I missing any good ones?

I am aware that some yarn companies have tons of free patters (Garnstudio/Drops, Berroco, Rebecca) but that's not what I'm looking for. I want to find the small designers like Wendy, Renae and Miriam.

I am NOT interested in baby clothes, hats, mittens, dishrags or scarves.

I AM interested in finding interesting womens clothing, lace shawls, and anything out of the ordinary.

Leave a comment and tell me your favorite online, downloadable, pattern source!

Anne at 9:39 AM        

Thursday, August 24, 2006
Got Gauge?

So I bought the Blue Sky Cotton and guess what?

I got gauge.

The only one of the 5 yarns I tried (that were supposed to get the gauge) that actually did.

Something Red is now Something Lilac.

Anne at 1:06 PM        

Wednesday, August 23, 2006
Quick Update and... The Knitting Kerfuffle....

For some reason I am stalled on the Glampyre Sweater. I am within a few hours of it being complete and I can't make myself pick it up. I still love it..... I am thinking this is an avoidance behavior because I am still so worried about running out of yarn.

Gauge for Something Red continues to frustrate me. I think I'm going to say the hell with it and just buy the damn Blue Sky Cotton and use it even though I think it's going to be a very heavy sweater made out of that yarn.

Not much other knitting going on since I've been spending all my time swatching for Something Red

Kelly is happy in Oregon, has fallen in love wih Rapper, and we've gotten 4 "fake breedings" (artificial inseminations) so far. Kelly wants to be bred, Rapper wants to breed her but there have been some "technical difficulties" so Rapper's owner has stepped up to the plate to get things done one way or another.

My friend Kris is not going to be able to make the Big Trip with me this year (she'll be home taking care of brand new puppies!) so I am facing the 16+ hour drive by myself. Yuck. And payng for the very expensive hotel room by myself. Double yuck.

Last but not least... a few posts ago I mentioned the knitting kerfuffle that happened with the knit group I belong(ed) to. The mention brough several comments and private emails asking what happened. It's been very hard to talk about as it was all quite upsetting to have people you think you know and trust turn on you without warning.

There were basically 2 and half people that were dead set against the rest of us discussing spinning at knit meetings or on our Yahoo group. TV, sex, food, dogs, kids, clothes, etc. were all okay subjects - but NOT SPINNING!!! The other 13 or so regulars didn't mind at all, or were in the process of getting sucked into the spinning vortex. It's really more complicated than that and as I said it's been really hard to think about it, much less talk about it, without getting upset all over again.

Last week Kirsten posted about it and then yesterday Christy really spelled it all out. They both expressed the things I'm feeling very well, so I think enough has been said and I don't need to add any more.

Suffice it to say that our merry band of multi-faceted fiber fanatics has (thank goodness) continued on almost without missing a beat.... but there is a hole that we are all well aware of that makes us all sad. The one good thing is that I kind of feel like we are stronger as a group now and even better friends. Which is nice.

Anne at 10:58 AM        

Monday, August 21, 2006
The K-Dog

Is Kelly enjoying her visit to the Pacific Northwest?

You tell me. Is that a happy dog or what?

Picture courtesy of Ron Manor.
Used with permission.

Anne at 7:10 AM        

Friday, August 18, 2006
A Picture....

Not a good picture, but still, a picture.

Here is my Stitch Diva/Glampyre Simple Knitted Bodice at 90% complete.

How can I be so sure it's 90%?

Because I had 10 balls of yarn, I've used every bit of 9 balls and I'm still not sure I have enough to make it as long as I want.

After completing each sleeve I took what was left and used it up around the bottom. Less than one row each littl ebit of yarn, but I'm so tight on yarn I had no choice. I don't want to join ends in on the reverse stckintte trim, It's way too hard to hide joins in reverse stockinette.

Next I'll pick up for the neck and finish that up. Then, whatever is left will decide how long it's going to be.

It does look short right now but really,it's "long enough", I'd just like it to be a bit longer if ossible. I think it looks short in the picture because the sleeves are so long. I have to have long sleeves, I can deal with it being a bit shorter in body but I'd never wear it if the sleeves felt too short.

I am really really happy with this so far, and promise I will get pictures of it on an actual person when it's done!

Anne at 10:44 AM        

Tuesday, August 15, 2006
There has been knitting.....

.... but still no picture taking.

Things were pretty crazy around here the past few days.

First there was the "kerfluffle" as Lisa called it, with the stitch-n-bitch group I belong(ed) to.. more about that in another post.

Then there was the whirlwind trip to Fort Collins for the dog show this past Saturday.

And THEN I realized Kelly was in season again... a month earlier than expected. Given that her intended suitor is in Oregon, I had to make some really fast decisions on what to do. You can read all about it on Kelly's blog.

And YES, there has been knitting. I am 80% done with the new Stitch Diva / Glampyre pattern..... LOVE IT!

And I did start Something Red. I'll order more yarn when I know how short I'm going to run. If the dyelots are too far off, I'll over dye.

Lots of stuff going on for work, a dog show this weekend and of course I have to spend some quality time worrying about Kelly....

Anne at 10:19 AM        

Thursday, August 10, 2006
Gauge Rant

The Good News is that my barely two year old $500 camera is not broken and I don't have to replace it.

The Bad News is I still didn't take any pictures.

Oh yes, I was going to rant about gauge.....

Why, why, why, WHY are their dozens and dozens of yarns Out There that all claim to knit up at 18 sts over 4 inches - that would be 4.5 sts per inch - and then don't?

Oh sure I can go up a needle size or two and make the yarns get that gauge. But then they look like crap. The fabric is so sleazy - I don't want to wear it much less spend my time knitting it.

I have purchased or stash dived and swatched not one, not two, not even three, but FOUR yarns in the past week trying to locate one that will give me a true 4.5 sts per inch and not look like gauze. All look lovely at 5 sts per inch. All said on the ball band they were supposed to work up to 4.5 sts per inch. They lie.

I desperately want to make Wendy's Something Red cardigan to take with me on the yearly Big Trip next month. Given that I have two other Must Finish projects to complete by then, time is getting short. And I can't find any yarn that gets gauge.

Oh and did I mention that when I do get stitch gauge by making gauze instead of fabric the row gauce is not even close. It's supposed to be 22 rows / 4 inches. I need at least 24 to hit 4 inches. Sometimes 26. Usually not an issue except Wendy specifically mentions in the pattern how important row gauge is in this one.

One of the yarns I really relly like. I was thinking of simply rewriting the pattern to my gauge. But then I realized I would not have nearly enough yarn even though I actually purchased more than I thought I'd need. And the store has no more. And of course if I buy elsewhere, the dyelot won't match.


That's her name. For now anyway. I thank everyone who voted and now I'm going to ignore what the majority said anyway. It was interesting to see how the voting went. Lola went out to an early lead, the Tina took over and it looked like a runaway. Then slowly slowly Zara crept up and took the front spot for quite a while, then late this week Lola took over a commanding lead. But she's a Tina. Really. She is.

Anne at 3:42 PM        

getting a dog?
Read this first!!

on the needles
30. Fletcher
Noro Transitions

29. Rosedale
Patons SWS

28. Forecast
Cascade Quatro

27. Lady Eleanor (again)
Patons SWS

26. Marble Shawl Collar Sweater
Karabella Marble

25. Serrano
Dale Baby Ull

24. Tamarah
Artyarns Regal Silk, Silk Mohair

23. Apricot(Plum) Jacket
DB Cashmerino Chunky

22. Rusted Root
BS Cotton Fleece

21. Not So Shrunken Cardigan
Lavold Sily Wool

20. Sizzle
Nashua Kim

19. Hanging Garden Stole
KP Alpaca Cloud

18. Log Cabin Blanket
Cascade Pima Tencel

17. Mystery Stole 2
Crazy Monkey Lace

16. Petticoat Sallops
Opal Petticoat

15. CeCe
Lambspun Silk

14. Hyrna Herborgar
Silk for Life

13. Sea Foam Shawl
LaLana Phat Silk

12. Diamond Fantasy Shawl
CTH Possum Lace

11. Evergreen Cardi

10. Mystery Shawl 3

9. Jaywalkers
LL Shepherd Sock

8. Pi @ Sunrise Shawl
Crazy Monkey Lace

7. Follow the Leader Aran
BS Naturespun Worsted

6. Peacock Feathers lace

5. Kiri Shawl
Rowan Kidsilk Haze

4. Sampler Shawl
Starmore Campion

3. Highland Triangle Shawl
America's Alpaca

2. Leaf Lace Shawl
Misti Alpaca Lace

1. Total Maze Cardigan
Araucania Nature Wool


finished in 2006
1/21 - Shadow of Love Socks
1/31 - Pineapple Jacket
2/5 - Smokin' Blueberry Socks
2/7 - Angora Fingerless Mitts
3/9 - Neopolitan Socks
3/18 - Summer Scallop Socks
3/30 - Spectrum: Red & Pink
4/2 - Felted Clogs
4/15 - Violets by the River
5/3 - Felted Hedgehog
5/6 - Felted B-4 Bag
6/15 - Pomatomus Socks
7/1 - Snapdragon Socks
9/11 - Simple Knitted Bodice
9/13 - White,Biscuit,Cream Shawl
9/14 - Something Lilac
10/4 - Cabbage Rose Socks
10/29 - Neck Warmer
11/15 - Lady Eleanor


finished in 2005
1/21 - Seascape Shawl
2/12 - Wool Peddler's Shawl
3/21 - Fir Cone Square Shawl
3/25 - Misty Garden Scarf
4/7 - Obi
4/30 - Truly Tasha's Shawl
5/19 - Ivy
6/19 - Tasha II Shawl
7/13 - Cherry Blossom Shawl
7/26 - Mom's Birthday Shawl
8/9 - Birch Shawl
8/28 - Mystery Shawl
10/4 - Herbal Remedy
10/5 - Rosy Fingered Dawn
11/18 - Mystery Shawl 2
12/6 - Ostrich Plumes Triangle
12/26 - In The Dark Socks
12/29 - Red, Red, RED! Scarf


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My Noro Philosophy:
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  WIP: Twice as Nice

I live in Colorado.
I raise and show Samoyeds.
I knit.
I spin.
I do beadwork.
I have too many beads.
I have too much yarn.
I love to start new projects.

talk to me
whitestarsams (at) hpi (dot) net

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