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August 2014
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October 2014

Home Again

Look what was waiting for me when I got home!


I got a package from Paradise Fibers! It is a skein of Rowan Fine Art Sock Yarn in purples, and a skein of Rowan Kid Silk Haze Stripe -- it's Kid Silk Haze that knits up in stripes!! I'll let that sink in for a minute. Just when I thought Kid Silk Haze couldn't get any better, they go and do this. Now, the only way it could get any more perfect would be if it glowed in the dark or was free. (Actually Paradise Fibers just did a buy four, get one free promotion on yarn, so I guess they already did that. I missed it, though; it ended Sunday the 21st.) The Kid Silk Haze Stripe is "Chiaroscuro", stripes of grey and purple, which goes fabulously with the purples of the Fine Art Sock Yarn in shades of purple. The Fine Art Sock yarn is a blend of merino wool, kid mohair and mulberry silk that has been handpainted, and it is is luscious to the fingers as well as to the eyes.  I can't stop squeezing it. 

I am going to make a Twisted Drop Stitch scarf  (by Nancy Kleiber) out of it, because the world neeeeeeds more pretty scarves! I never get tired of wearing them, especially in this house in the long, bitterly-cold winter. I glanced over the pattern last night; it seems to be alternating rows of each color in a dropped stitch pattern, and it is very lovely and looks like a quick knit, too. It is a free pattern on the Rowan web site, I think, if you sign up to be a member. I can't wait to get started! 

Still at the Lake


I took this picture yesterday, and today the leaves are even more colorful. It's so beautiful up here!

The winner of the Faux Taxidermy Knits book giveaway is Jean! She has been emailed. I hope you make beautiful things, Jean!

I have been busy knitting. I finished the first sleeve on my pink cardigan:

1st Sleeve

Sleeve detail

The sleeve was originally a three-quarters length sleeve, but I made it a full length sleeve. I just hope the sleeve won't drag and be annoying; it's a full, lacy cuff, and pretty, but may be a bit aggravating to wear. I tried to make it about an inch shy of the full length, though. I am currently done one pattern repeat of the three repeats for the lace cuff on the second sleeve.

These tractors tilled their way across the field of yarn as well:


Keep on knitting!

The Lake

I'm at my brother's camp in Winterville Plantation for a couple of weeks. It is  very restful here, peaceful. 

Lake colors

It is pretty close to Eagle Lake, so it is right up there in Maine. The trees are already starting to turn. The camp is on St. Froid Lake, a little bit of heaven on earth.



And what would Heaven be without a cat? Meet Belizaire ...


He is the fluffiest cat I have ever known! 

I have finished my blue socks and gotten the third clue done on my mystery mittens:

Blue socks done


Now my needles are poised to attack the sleeves on my pink lacy cardigan! 


I thought I'd show you a picture of my cardigan so far:

Pink cardigan

The body is done, joined at the sleeves and the ends run in, which makes me happy, because that's one less thing I'll have to do at the end.  I have the lace pattern done on the first sleeve. So, it's going along. Rachel would like it, I think; it is her yarn, so I hope she would approve!


This was actually my second project that I worked on with circular needles.

The first project with circular needles since the stroke is this:


This is the Abstract Leaves Cowl by Deb Mulder. (Hmmm, I wonder if she is the lost sister of Fox Mulder, who was abducted by aliens? Nahhhhh...). Aside from being a free download on Ravelry, it's wicked pretty. I decided to use leftover yarn from my Pueblo Stole - I am getting a lot of mileage out of that kit! The beads are size 6 beads inserted on the knit stitch between the two yarnovers in the pattern. The beads are leftover, too; I originally got them for this project, but realized they were redder than I wanted. Thus, I called it the Leftover Abstract Leaves cowl. 

I knit a couple rows, and admire it, knit a few rows, and admire it some more. Actually, it's pretty slow going, because I have to get the beads on with a crochet hook one-handed, but that is kind of fun. I drop them frequently, but I have a handy-dandy grabber thingy that lets me pick up things with ease. I'm halfway through the cowl. It seems like a timely thing to knit this autumn!

I mentioned before that I am taking part in a mitten knitalong by Tori Seierstad, but it's a mystery, so I will wait to post my pictures till the end. This is exciting because I am using handspun yarn - leftover brown (that is terribly underspun) that I spun before my stroke, and orange (that is much better) that I spun after my stroke, when I went up to Nova Scotia to see Sharon and Richard.


So pretty. I can't wait to show you how the pattern is coming out! Such a clever girl, that Tori. 

Don't forget to leave a comment on the blog post about Faux Taxidermy Knits by Louise Walker! The deadline to enter is September 22!

Book Review: Faux Taxidermy Knits by Louise Walker

I got the chance to review a wonderful book for the quirky, whimsical and curious: Faux Taxidermy Knits, 15 Wild Animal Knitting Patterns by Louise Walker. Face it, have you ever secretly desired a fox stole, alligator bag, or a tiger rug, but you don't feel great about killing the animal to have it? Well, now you can have it and no animals will be harmed! This book has 15 patterns for things such as a moose head mounted in traditional taxidermy fashion, a mink stole, hedgehog slippers and and owl tea cosy.

Mink 02 

  Mink close up
I love the way their beady little eyes stare up at you, with love and mischief, not like the dead eyes of a real mink stole that make you say EWWWWW. But that may just be me. I am not a big fan of zombie minks. 

2Owls 01

Isn't this tea cosy the sweetest thing ever? This book is a British publication, so it just had to have a tea cosy, as well as a badger head. 

You can buy the book at Stitch Craft Create, or browse the whole selection of books in their bookstore. Books that caught my eye in browsing were Edward's Menagerie by Kerry Lord, Craft Bomb Your Bike by Shara Ballard (mostly because the name sounds slightly dangerous yet with a heady sense of crafting), and Knit Your Own Boyfriend by Carol Meldrum ("And the best thing about a knitted boyfriend? He doesn't answer back!" LOL).

I decided to make a project from Faux Taxidermy, the very last one in the book: Bear Coasters. Here is a picture of them in the book:

Baby Bears

So cute!

You have to knit two pieces for each one, and a couple of ears.  (The last time you saw them, they were swimming in my sink.)


Knitting them was easy. There were three mistakes in the pattern, all of which were probably an editing error, and none of them were so bad that I couldn't remedy them easily. In the event that there were any mistakes that were insurmountable, I think you could get a quick reply from the publisher -- they are great people, and crafting is clearly their passion. 

Sewing the pieces together and stuffing the head, legs and arms came next, which was the part that I was most worried about, since I am knitting with only one hand. But in the end, I got it done, and here they are, my own faux taxidermy:

Bear Coaster

I wished I had had a view of the coasters without a cup on them, so here ya go:

Front view

Back view

I love them! They were really fun to make, too. Each bear took me about 5 hours to knit. You can probably sew them together much more quickly than I can! 

Wolf 01


Thanks to the fantastic publisher, I have a free copy of the print book Faux Taxidermy to give out to one person who comments either here or on Facebook by midnight eastern standard time on September 22. Enter and you may win a free copy! 

There is a blog hop about the book too, so if you want to see what others are doing, click here to go see! 

Faux tax banner4


Wave bye-bye