Monday, November 30, 2009

Don't worry, I'm not dead

Sorry I haven't been posting for a while but there hasn't really been anything post-worthy happening lately. Actually that's not true, I've just been too lazy to post. I did finish a rather large project, though .

It's a half-circle shawl by Jennifer Jones. For something called a half circle shawl it's not very half circle-y. It's like a pentagon with a bite taken out of it. I'm not sure if I missed a step or something to get that shape but I am baffled, but aside from that I'm quite happy with it. It's huge which is nice. I'm always mad at shawls for being so small, I like things that keep more that the back of your neck warm. Like for example, this thing. But I won't go doing a big rant about the size of shawls, I'll just continue talking about my shawl. So, anyways I used Needful Yarns Woodstock and it only took 400 grams. That's a lot of shawl for 400 grams.

In other knitting news I have been trying to find a pattern for one skein of hand-dyed Misti Alpaca lace.
Actually, I found a pattern. It's very pretty, looks like it would sufficiently hold my attention and is for hand-dyed yarn and I have enough. What's stopping me? The fact that my perfect pattern is in Finnish. They do provide a sheet with translations of the abbreviations and it is all charted. I prefer to knit from English patterns, so I think I'm going to do this one instead.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

I am happy

I am happy right now for 2 reasons. The first reason is look at what I have re-blocking. It's the swallowtail shawl. I love this pattern, although the nupps where a little bit tough.

I say re-blocking because I actually finished it yesterday morning and it was blocking all of yesterday but when I un-pinned it parts of it looked un-blocked. So I re-blocked it last night and it's been drying all day today and all last night. I'm only showing you the tip because my room is a mess (Hey! I'm 13. When you were 13 the default state of your room probably wasn't that tidy either.) Anyways, you might have noticed the green yarn there. I'm probably not the first one to think of this, but I felt pretty clever when I stretched some yarn between the corner pins so that I have a straight reference line to block the edges evenly.

the second thing that is making me happy today is this message that I found in my ravelry e-mail box.
Madeleine, I own a little yarn shop in Swansboro, NC called The Salty Sheep Yarn Shop. I have been trying to come up with some one skein ideas for Christmas knitting and came across your scarf pattern. I love it! I think it would be a great teaching pattern. I don’t know how you feel about shops teaching from your patterns. I would love your permission to use it. Have a great day and Happy Knitting! Peggy
Now, of course I said yes because that is the most exciting thing that has happened in a week.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Madeleine:1 Scarf:0

I have defeated an enemy whose main weapon is boredom. But I persevered through a project that was just repetitive enough to be boring, but required too much attention to be mindless knitting. It's Halcyon from Knitty winter 2007 that I knit on commission. The yarn is Zephyr wool silk from Fiddlesticks Knitting that I hand-dyed using this technique.

Here's a close-up. the picture is a little blurry, so it looks like there is halo to the yarn, but it is pretty smooth.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009


You may have noticed the new poll on the side bar. The idea for it came about last night when I was thinking to my that it would be really nice if stockinet stitch didn't curl up. Think about it. we could have stockinet scarves and blankets that don't curl up in to a small tube. Or we wouldn't have to do button bands or worry about the sides of the arm holes rolling up on vests. We wouldn't have those roll brim hats, but we can live with out those. And than I thought "wouldn't it be cool to see what knitters would change about knitting if they could". And thats exactly what I did. Unfortunately, due to the laws of physics this is not a poll asking you what I should change about knitting, because I do not have the power to change the laws of physics. It would be nice, though.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween!

Meg decided to dress up as a person, but found the costume rather uncomfortable.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

RIP Coco Bean

I am sad to announce the sudden passing of Coco Bean the rat (pictured learning how to knit on the right) he was two (the equivalent of about 68 human years). He will be missed by his brother Cheerio and all his human friends.

Monday, October 19, 2009

vendor's night!!

I just got back from vendor's night at the Knitting Guild! Very exciting. Eight tables of alpaca, cashmere and merino in every colour and colour combo known to knitter. Meet the new members of the stash. I didn't buy anything hand dyed - actually it's all pretty boring. But I scored some great deals on some great yarns. So here is yarn number 1:

It's two balls of the yarn that I need to finish this vest. It was good that they were there because I haven't seen this yarn at any yarn store. So now I have no excuse for not knitting the vest.

Yarn number 2 is 8 balls of Soft Tweed. I got it at 5 bucks a ball, and with no tax. It's $12 normally! It's going to become a vest. My goal is to make a vest that doesn't look hippie/gypsy-ish, unlike the vest that I made last year. It's made out of super bulky weight, rainbow colored wool. I like it a lot, but it can contribute to some very hippie/gypsy looking outfits. And don't get me wrong, I love the hippie/gypsy look but I would like to have a vest I could wear into town. Like outside clothes. I mean outside my property clothes.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

knitted organs

This post is a response to Heather's comment on an older post. I too have been trying to figure out how to knit a brain. I have however knit other human organs.
Here we have the thyroid gland

and the lungs

and last but not least the digestive system. I would like to knit every organ in the body, but not being Debbie New, I am confined to organs that can be portrayed in a flat-ish way.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

do I have to give it a title?

Today I went to the Ashton store, witch is not only a yarn store but also a little general store (it's been a general store since 1851) so my dad was sufficiently occupied with a news paper. they only have a corner of yarn and knitting stuff, but they have lots of great stuff. Aka, fiddlesticks kitting, louet and fleece artist and some other brand of yarn I have never heard of. Now let me show you the haul.
Ok I got two skeins of yarn, not much of a haul. I'm saving my money for the vendors night at the knitting guild. Anyways I got 1 skien of louet gems sport wight (left) and 1 skein of hand-dyed fleece artist Merino 2/6 .
Here's a close-up of the merino 2/6
Here's the gems. I think Im going to make socks out of the gems and the merino 2/6 is going to be a scarf.
In other knitting news, I picked this up the other day
It's a lopi sweater for me. I've been working on it for a few years now, and I completely abandoned last winter (you can only work on it in the winter, would you what to have all that wool on your lap in the summer?) but I think I'll finish it this year.

I started it a few years ago and I just started the first sleeve. It's going well. I also just started this:
its halcyon and the yarn is fiddlesticks knitting Zephyr Laceweight Wool-Silk that I dyed. It's turning out better that I thought.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Monday, October 12, 2009

I feel stupid right now

I got back from my Grandma's house today and sat down with this. After a few rows I decided that I would't have enough yarn. Actually, I have known that for a while, but I ignored the smart little knitter with the little knitting crystal ball that sits in the back of my head. Now I feel kinda stupid for thinking that I could get a scarf out of a single 100 gram ball. sdk.ghaj svwe3746 wareghdfhs. Sorry, that was just me banging my head on the keyboard. Ow. Anyway, I thought of the scarf rescue hat from Knitting Rules. It involves knitting your scarf until it fits around your head, casting off, then sewing the ends togther, then picking up the stitches around the top and knitting it into a hat. This was the plan, but I'm lazy and don't like picking up stitches and I already have enough hats. So I just did the casting off and sewing the ends together and made this:

I took two photos so that you can see the great colors. Grumble grumble - if I lived in a 4 dimensional world I wouldn't have to take two picures I would only have to take one - grumble grumble. Sorry. But anyway, I like it this way. I can use it to tie back my hair and it keeps my ears warm, and I only have two other head bands like this. I kinda wish I had made this though. Oh well. Stupid me missing out on a chance to learn entrelac - grumble grumble. And free yarn is the best place to try new things. Again, oh well.

In other knitting news the world's most boring sock is coming along. When I'm done these I'll definitely go and buy some of this and make me some nice socks.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Sock Update

I am at my grandma's house this weekend (so no photos) which is a 5 hour drive from Ottawa. I brought the world's most boring sock to knit on the way and realized that it was going to be too small about an hour into the trip. I was following the sock recipe from Knitting Rules and she says to multiply your gauge times the circumference of the place where the calf muscle ends, then remove about an inch of stitches (so that you don't get droopy socks) to get the number of stitches to cast on. So I multiplied 8 stitches to the inch by 11 1/2 inches to get 92. I removed about an inch worth of stitches to get 84. This would have worked except one thing. Removing an inch of stitches is assuming you're going to do most of the cuff in stockinette stitch, unlike me who prefers a ribbed cuff. The ribbing makes it smaller and so removing an inch of stitches and doing ribbing will make for a sock that not only stays up, but cuts off the circulation to the foot. Not how I want to thank my dad for taking me to Quebec City. So I rip the 3 inches I had and cast on 92 stitches. I have about two inches now. This is not the first disappointment for the sock, though. At the yarn store in Quebec City I bought a pair of fancy pants turbo needles for 20$ and it turns out they're the wrong size and I am knitting with an old set of metal dpns (one of which is slightly bent) and what's more, I already have a set of nice wooden needles somewhere in just the right size and they are nowhere to be found. All of them but one and one dpn doesn't help me. Sigh.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Ramblings of a travelling knitter

Well, yesterday my dad and I got back from Quebec City and now I can show you the new additions to the stash.

Here we have the 4 balls of sock yarn for my dad's socks. It's Regia 4 ply in the world's most boring color to make the world's most boring socks. Sigh.

Now meet the 8 balls of Galway chunky. Apparently It's a Plymouth yarn, but it doesn't say so on the ball band. I have no idea what I'm going to do with it. I was thinking sweater, then blanket, then poncho, then blanket again, now it's back to the sweater idea again. Oh well, I'll think of something. But not before I finish this: it's the vest I told you I'd tell you about.

It's made out of 3 shades of un-dyed wool from here. I love this yarn, it's scratchy in a soft way. Very nice to knit with. I bought four skeins of it at Fibre Fest, thinking that 4 100 gram skeins would be enough as it has been enough in the past. I cast on and started knitting. Some ribbing, lace, fair isle, plain knitting then some more fair isle and now stripes later I look at the yarn that I have left and think I don't have enough. That's when it went into hibernation with the logic that me not knitting it will spontaneously generate more yarn. Unfortunately Aristotle and his thing about spontaneous generation is not allowed under the normal laws of physics. Maybe in a quantum world, but not in ours. Did I tell you I'm a bit of a nerd? Ok fine, back to the knitting. So about 3 weeks later, I go to Upper Canada Village and find this at the gift shop. Anyways this is where the 2 un-dyed 50 gram skeins are going.

In other knitting news, I finished a mesh market bag made of some crochet cotton I found laying around the stash. It's pretty small, but holds a lot. This was my project for the 6 hour train ride to Quebec City and unfortunately I finished it at the hotel so I had nothing to knit on the way back. So with the leftover yarn I knit a little pouch for it because this is a kind of bag that you have pouches for. But it doesn't take 6 hours to knit a pouch so for the rest of the ride I knit a swatch for the socks and read a book about quantum physics.

Monday, October 5, 2009

yarn shoping in quebec city

I just got back from ; La Dauphine ; (sorry, fench key bord) In quebec city. There are not very many yarn stores here, this one was kind of out of the way. I spent a long time there, I am (sorry, french key bord again) not to sure how long (Time does not behave normally in yarn stores). I got 8 balls of galway chunky in a dark red color, I am not sure what I will make with it. I also got 4 balls of regia 4 ply, sock yarn. I am making socks for my dad (even more ambitious than what ever I am making with the 8 balls of galway chunky) considering his large feet. Oh, yes and a set of sock needles. Damn it, I already have a set in the exact same size. Oh well.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

update from quebec city

This morning my dad and I hopped a train to quebec city. We left ottawa at 10:00 and got there at 5:30, so it was a fairly long trip. We forgot both the camera and the computer, so I am blogging from the computer in the hotel lobby. I am hungry right now and what to go eat. More updates latter.

Friday, October 2, 2009

I seem to be getting a little trilobite obsessed

Have you ever felt the need to have a trilobite on your scarf or sweater? Have you ever looked at your mittens or socks and thought to yourself that there was something missing? Then fret no more because your all-purpose trilobite chart is here!

My mom now has very nice socks.

Last night I finished my mom's birthday socks. They are made out of Mission Falls wool, and the "pattern" is the sock recipe from Knitting Rules by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee. These are the first pair of socks that I have ever knit. Note the word pair. The first sock I ever knit was made out of self-striping sock yarn and it cuts off the circulation to your foot and I couldn't figure out how to graft the toe so I gave up and did a three needle bind-off. Now lets never talk about that sock again. Going back to my mom's socks, she says they're awesome.

Two nights ago, I was at Upper Canada Village with a group of other homeschoolers for an overnight thing where you dress up in the 1860's clothes and stuff. That's not the point though. My point is that they have yarn which is made at the village in the gift shop. It's wool. It comes in 3 undyed shades and red and a mustard color. But the best part is that it's cheap. Like $2.50 for 50 grams and $3.50 for 75 grams. So I bought 2 75 gr skeins in red and mustard and 2 50 gr un-dyed skeins. the last two are going in a vest that I'll talk about later, but the first two I'm open to suggestion for. It's worsted weight and quite unevenly spun. I was thinking socks or mittens.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Meet Trilobite

Other than knitting my other interests include fossil hunting. As I looked at some fossil trilobites I was thinking that I could probably knit one. So, last night I knit a trilobite while thinking of a cute name for it. Unfortunately, I didn't think of one. Therefore, I present to you ..... Knit Trilobite. If you want to knit one for your self than you may do so by clicking here. If you are more of a Ravelry type, than you can click here.

EDIT: Since the link for the pattern has died (it's dead Jim) I am posting the pattern here:


  • 1 50 gr ball of Needful Yarns Kim (discontinued). Each trilobite takes about half a 50 gr ball so use whatever scraps you have.
  • 4 3.25mm DPNs (use whatever needles give you a firm gauge with the yarn that you are using, usually 1-2 sizes below the recommended needle size on the ball band)
  • Crochet hook in whatever size needle you used
  • Darning needle
  • 3 stitch markers
  • Small amount of fibrefill or yarn scraps
  • Catnip and bell (if you are making a cat toy)


Any gauge will do just as long as it is firm enough so that the filling doesn't show through.


Pygidium (“tail”)
Cast on 6 sts, pm marking beginning of round
(K1, m1, pm, K1, m1, K1) 2 times - 10 sts
(K2, m1, K1, m1, K2) 2 times - 14 sts
(K3, m1, K1, m1, K3) 2 times – 18 sts
(K4, m1, K1, m1, K4) 2 times – 22 sts
(K5, m1, K1, m1, K5) 2 times – 26 sts
(K6, m1, K1, m1, K5) 2 times – 30 sts

Thorax (“body”)
P7, K1, P14, K1, P7 for 2 rows
K the next 2 rows
Repeat this pattern 5 times

Cephalon (“head”)
P6, K3, P12, K3, P6 for 2 rows.
K5, P1, K3, P1, K10, P1, K3, P1, K5 for 2 rows
K5, P2tog, K1, P2tog, K10, P2tog, K1, P2tog, K5 – 26 sts
K5, P3tog, K10, P3tog, K5 – 22 sts
ssk, K7, K2tog, ssk, K7, K2tog – 18 sts
ssk, K5, K2tog, ssk, K5, K2tog – 14 sts

Antenna (make 2)
Using crochet hook ch 7. Break yarn and pull through loop.

Stuff him to desired firmness, than graft the head. Sew the antenna to the top of head. Weave in ends.

Monday, September 28, 2009

woo hoo!!!!

I'm famous!!!

Saturday, September 26, 2009

How do you solve a problem like one skien of Noro? (reprise)

Last night I cast on a scarf in the noro Taiyo and it looked like this:
I was trying to do the risotto stitch from super stitches knitting , but I missed a direction and I got some thing that wasn't risotto stitch. It was kind of lacy and squarish, and I was fine with it. I even kind of liked it. Until my mom said "it looks a little like crochet". CROCHET?! I couldn't knit some thing that looked like crochet. The rest of the evening I was deciding what to do with it. I didn't want to frog it as this yarn is delicate and breaks easily and this stitch is sticky. Yet, if I kept knitting I would have a scarf made out of very beautiful yarn in a stitch that looked like crochet. So I frogged it, and about an inch and a half from bottom the yarn broke and so I have a lovely piece of crochet looking knitting to show you today.

After much deliberation, looking at cables, looking at lace patterns and looking at other woven looking stitches I decided to try the risotto stitch again. this time doing it right. so I cast on 28 stitches and bravely started knitting. And now I love it! It looks like woven fabric and lays flat. So I present you ......... risotto stitch done right.

Friday, September 25, 2009

How do you solve a problem like one skein of Noro?

I won this skein of yarn at the Lanark county knitting guild last week (it was a door prize) and I have no idea what to do with it. It's 100 gr of noro Taiyo (cotton/silk/wool/nylon) in white, green, red, blue, purple, brown and orange. I was sort of thinking of a scarf or wrist warmers. Any ideas?

Thursday, September 24, 2009


Hello, my name is madeleine. Im 13 years old and already a pretty competent knitter and designer. I home school
and I live with 5 chickens, 2 rats, 2 parents and a border collie and blah blah blah.... Let's talk about knitting now. I just finished blocking this scarf I made out of the louet merlin dk and I love it. It's light and soft and drapey. I got the yarn at fiber fest for free because of my amazing young talent (thank you again Heather) . I came up with the pattern, but the stitch pattern is from super stitches knitting and is called candle light lace. (thank you giant pumpkin for molding the scarf)

In other knitting news my mom's socks are almost done. I finally grafted the toe on the first one and I have just finished turning the heel on the second one. they where an IOU for her birthday last april.