29 September 2023

FO Friday: A Musselburgh for Forte

Hello there! Sorry to disappear, this week got way ahead of me and I realized that this is the only time I will have posted. But I'm fine, as I said, just a little bit too busy with mostly annoying things.

Anyway, I have a finished object to share with you:

I'm pretty sure you all know what this pattern is, since I've already made a couple - along with sooo many other people on Ravelry, and I'm sure plenty more who don't use Ravelry!

Project: A Musselburgh for Forte
Pattern: Musselburgh, by Ysolda Teague
Yarns: Lorna's Laces Solemate, in the colorway Charcoal; and, Onyx Fiber Arts Merino Fingering, in the colorway Sybil
Needles: US size 3
Modifications: None

Notes: Though this pattern is fiddly and annoying to start, once you get past the beginning, it's a good knit. I've already made two of these for other nieces' husbands, and this year was another partner's turn. I do think if I knit this in only one yarn, it would be incredibly boring, but I've always used two different yarns, which keeps it interesting, and provides the possibility of four different hats!

I know that the others have been big hits as gifts, so why re-invent the wheel, you know? At this rate, there will be one left to be made next year, and then everyone in that group of the family will have a spouse/partner who received a Musselburgh. 😊

(The other day, I asked The Tim to let me know if he ever decided he wanted one. He said I already made him one. I haven't. But who am I to argue?)

The yarns used this time around were both from my stash, so I'm especially happy about that. Granted, I only used about half of the amount in each skein, but that means I'll get something out of the remainders, or they can be used to swap or give away. Win-win!

Anyway, this is the third out of four knitted gifts for this particular family. I have a pair of fingerless mitts to make for a fourteen-year-old boy, and then my holiday knitting (other than for The Tim) will be completed! Unless of course I decide to make something for someone else, which could happen, but if it does I still have plenty of time to get it done.

Not much else is going on. This week was a series of dr appts,  errands that I'd delayed too long, and things like that, so my days off were pretty well taken up with those. Thankfully, today I have nothing going on, except putting some towels in the washing machine and then the dryer and putting them away. Dinner will be leftovers, so no big project there. It's a gloomy, rainy day here, so perfect for being able to just stay in the house and do whatever I feel like doing. YAY!

And that's all the news from here. I hope you have a lovely weekend, and get the chance to relax and take a breath. October starts on Sunday, and you know what that means:

Here we go!

22 September 2023

Mood Boards

Hello, Happy Friday! And for those of us in the Northern Hemisphere, happy last full day of summer. Tomorrow officially begins the fall season, and although it's supposed to be stormy here, I don't care because I look forward to fall and all it brings and where it leads us.

One of the YouTube knitting podcasts I watch kind of regularly is Wool Needles Hands. The woman who is the host - Tayler - is really engaging, and seems so excited with whatever kinds of projects she tries. Recently, she has talked about finding your knitting style, and creating mood boards to support that. I found this to be really interesting, since I have recently started to become more aware of what might be called my knitting style, and though I know what a vision board is, I'd never heard of a mood board.

Which led me to wonder - what about you? Do you have a defined knitting style, and/or a mood board (or boards, I guess)? I guess you could say that Pinterest is a mood board, but though I have a Pinterest account, I tend to only fool with it on occasion. Anyway I was intrigued about mood boards, so I poked around online and among my friends.

My niece Amanda told me that after I asked, she realized that she "unintentionally" may have been making them. 😁 She said that for each new year, she makes a board of intentions/visions/moods/ideas for the coming year, and makes it her computer's home screen. And then she makes monthly collages and uses it as her phone's home screen. (She, like me, loves lists and such, and so I am not surprised that she does this.)

A couple of friends told me that each season, they create a group of colors and some images that they use as a guide for that season. One of them said that it keeps her from adding clothes to her closet that don't go well with anything else she already owns. I can see the value in that. Another said that it keeps her from buying things - clothes or household goods - that are "fancy" regardless how much she likes them. She told me that she has realized that her style is extremely casual. So when she buys something fancy because it appeals to her somehow, she either never actually wears it, or it goes in a closet because it looks weird with other things in her house.

So I can see the advantages here. And I have to say, I'm considering trying something for a lot of the reasons above, but also just for the grounding aspect of it. I do have a tendency to see something really different, or quirky, or just plain weird and become obsessed with it, even though I know deep inside it's not gonna work. 

When I looked up "mood board" on Google and on Pinterest, a lot of the examples were for help defining your "brand" (which makes me want to gag), or for interior design purposes.

This image is useful, I think, and the link to the article about it seems pretty straightforward.

This link showed some examples based on different topics, and the image below really made me want a cup of coffee! (Which is weird because I am not much of a coffee drinker at all!)

Anyway, this has given me a whole new rabbit hole to poke around and use as food for thought. Besides my current knitting and my book, I may have to delve a bit deeper tomorrow when it's too cold and rainy to be out and about.

Because why not add yet another way to make a kind of list to my life? Clearly the 23,907 ones I already have created physically and in my brain are not enough ... 😉

Have a good weekend, regardless of how you and your brain spend it, and I'll see you next week!

19 September 2023

La Oveja

OK, so I know very little Spanish and had to look up the word for "sheep," but I wanted to introduce you to Esperanza:

Isn't she a cutie? She is from Spain, hence her name and the title of this post. One of my co-workers at the yarn store took a trip with one of her friends to Barcelona, Spain. And of course, she had to visit a yarn store there. She found a little set of stitch markers/progress keepers that were different little sheep, and bought them because there were just enough in the set for each of us to choose one. Isn't that a nice idea?

I chose Esperanza because I loved her black face, and the fact that her "fleece" looked like random swirly writing. And her name is one of my most favorite Spanish names, and I thought she would give me HOPE that my projects would be successfully completed. (See what I did there?) 😊 

In the photo above, she is helping me work on my DRK Everyday Sweater, which is still in the early stages of the yoke. But I am enjoying the knit, and she is making me smile, so it's a win-win.

Are there any little things making you smile these days? Let me know.

15 September 2023

Enough Light!

Last week, I started working on this stitching project:

And I have to tell you, doing the black thread on the black background was to say the least, a challenge! But I really want to make this project, and this is about the third of the black-on-black part of it, so I'm hoping to get another good chunk done today, because guess what? It's sunny and bright here, so I'll actually have enough light to see what the heck I'm doing - hooray! It's a Halloween ornament, so I would really like to get it done for the holiday this year. Fingers crossed.

How are things where you are? Today like I said is bright and sunny, and so pleasant and cool - just the way I like it to be, especially after last week was so hot and humid. Maybe fall is really thinking about showing up. I mean, next week *is* the last week of summer, so I'm more than ready. I've even been thinking of putting together some kind of soup for dinner. I love improvising with what we have, and I can walk to the market around the corner and get some nice crusty bread to have with it.

Since I worked for someone yesterday, they are taking my shift on Sunday, which means I have the entire weekend off. With no specific plans, except for Sunday morning when The Tim said that we should go out for brunch - you don't have to twist my arm, I love to go to brunch. I have things I'm hoping to do, but nothing absolutely necessary, and nothing time-sensitive, so I'm just going to see what I feel like each day and go from there. Such a luxury!

Today is laundry, and I'm currently waiting for the workers to come and put the final seal on our repaired chimney. I got my hair cut earlier, so once the chimney work is complete, I think I'll take a walk in the nice weather. It's so nice to have the windows open and not feel sweaty.

I'm glad you enjoyed the photo of Alfie and Esme that I posted. They truly seem to have a special bond, and it's fun to see them together. Alfie is such a goofy weirdo, and Esme is definitely the boss in that relationship. Which is extra funny not just because she is still timid around us, but also Alfie is easily twice her size. 😊

What are your weekend plans? I hope you are having good weather wherever you happen to be, but if not, I hope you can avoid anything too awful. Whatever you do, I hope you have time to just relax and enjoy things. I'll see you again next week.

14 September 2023

I've Just Got This For You Today

I've got nothing today except this - a photo I took the other day of Esme bathing Alfie's paw. Honestly, these two are such besties, it's kind of ridiculous.

11 September 2023

Moving Right Along

How was your weekend? Mine was good, though I did work both days. But weekend days are short days, so it was fine. And since the weather was miserable, I was just as happy to be doing that.

The Tim was apparently inspired to get some things done, so he returned a toilet he'd ordered from Home Depot that ended up being the wrong one to work with the plumbing in our old house, and then he ordered another one, since the one we need wasn't in stock. I'm glad I missed all of that, because frankly, helping to carry a HEAVY toilet down from the third floor to the first is not something that would have ended well, if I had been the designated helper. He got the next door neighbor to help, and said that with him helping, it was really no big deal. So both of us felt like we had a worthwhile weekend. 😊

I mentioned in my last post that some people were coming to fix our chimney. I was amazed at all they accomplished in what seemed like such a short amount of time! The best part is that they were really nice, and I wasn't nervous at all having them around. Granted, most of the time they were outside on the roof, but I had to leave the doors unlocked for them to get in and out of the house, and it didn't freak me out like I feared it would. It's funny, I'm not really fearful out and about anywhere, but I really hesitate when people have to come to the house. I guess it's because letting a stranger come in is just unnerving under the best circumstances. But all's well that ends well. Next up - a new roof!

My knitting is moving along pretty well too. By the end of last week, I'd finished the first half of a Musselburgh hat I'm knitting for a Christmas gift. I started adding the second yarn, as you can see below:

I enjoy making these in two different yarns, and the variations it means you can have when you wear it. Honestly, the most frustrating thing in the pattern as far as I'm concerned is the very beginning. Every time I start one, I think it may not even be worth it, but then I get to the part where you just knit around for a long time, and suddenly all is well ... 

I was surprised to realize that the September 11 attacks were 22 years ago. That seems so odd to me; admittedly, I don't feel like it was yesterday, but it just doesn't seem that it could be long ago enough for those born that year to be adults today. Time is just so weird. I know for anyone directly affected, it likely does feel like it was yesterday. I hope for all of them, they have been able to find a new normal that at least means that every single day isn't full of searing grief and sorrow.

I wish peace and comfort to all of you. Have a good week, and remember to let those important to you know that you care. 

06 September 2023

I'm Back - With an FO!

Hello and Happy September! I'm finally back and hopefully will be able to check in regularly going forward. The last couple of months were challenging, and I'm glad I took time off from the blog, though I did miss all of you. Let's just say that as of today, mental health stuff, dental stuff, life stuff, and house stuff are all doing better, so it was a worthwhile endeavor to concentrate on those.

I have been knitting, and have started a couple of new things that are holiday gifts, but I'm happily here to tell you about an FO! You may remember that I was going right along on my Stripey Summer Tee, which started like this:

(this is the actual color best represented, btw)

And then I made progress:

More progress:

And now, it's an FO <cue applause>

Project: Stripey  Summer Grapefruit Tee
Pattern: Rock It Tee, by Tanis Lavallee (Ravelry link)
Yarn: MadelineTosh Tosh Light in the Pink Grapefruit colorway; and, Fiberstory Fave Sock in the Barely colorway
Needles: US size 5
Modifications: In the pattern, it says to make the centered double decreases on the sides in every other row. I didn't do that, deciding that with having to keep track of the stripes, that would be an extra thing to worry about. So I did the decreases every 4th and 6th row, and I really think it looks pretty.

Notes: This is a really well-written pattern, making it very clear what needs to happen and when. The designer said that of course you can use whatever striping sequence you like, but when she made the sample, she did eight row stripes. I figured if that was good enough for her, it was good enough for me. 😊 I made the fourth size in the pattern, because if I'm wearing wool at all in the summer and springtime, I want there to be good air flow, so I wanted positive ease.

I've worn this a couple of times already (it still being summer - OMG I finished something during the season I want to wear it!), and it's comfy and I feel like it fits well. I've gotten a lot of compliments on it, which of course makes my knitter's heart happy. And another knitter even said, "Wow, you did the stripes so you can't even see the joining of the other yarn!" which I took as one the highest praise possible. 

I made sure to have enough yarn according to what the pattern required, and my gauge swatches worked fine, but at the end of things, here's what I had left:

That's 84 grams of the Pink Grapefruit color, and 97 grams of the Barely color, so ... I don't know, someone's calculations were off. But these will get incorporated into something else, never fear!

So that's that. I'm hoping to post more regularly now, and have some things to show and tell, as well as my regular golden nuggets of prose and wisdom. I hope all of you have been keeping well, and that if you are near any extremes of weather (I'm not even getting into a discussion of the weather here this week, ugh), that you are managing to keep safe.

And now I'm off to welcome the Chimney Guy, who is here to take a look at what needs to be done with/to the chimney before we can replace the roof. On the one hand, there goes any money available. On the other hand, I have been trying to get The Tim to get on this for the past three years, so please rejoice with me that soon leaky ceilings will be a thing of the past!

Take care, and have the best day possible.