Tag Archives: helen stewart

Popping In…

Posted on by .

HEY!! Where have you been? Ha ha.  After a crazy few weeks, which mostly involved dealing with an eye issue and a weirdo steroid treatment that has mostly fixed the eye issue (I’ll save you the details of the crazy side effects), and in which I did not write any blog posts, I’m finally popping in to give you a list…

1) I’m plugging away on the first pattern of the Shawl Society II series, the Fairyhill Shawl:

2) But in the meantime, the second shawl pattern has been released, Sprite’s Fen Shawl, and I really, really want to start that because it is soooooooo pretty (click on that link, it really is).  But I need to find yarn for it….

3) But I can’t start that one anyway because I’m also doing some commissioned knitting these days.  Here is the Amy shawl by Romi Hill that I am knitting for someone:

It has a garter stitch body, which is finished, and you can see in the upper right part of the picture that I have started the edging, which is knit at a 90 degree angle to the body.  Such a pretty pattern.

4) I’ve taught a few classes and forgot to take pictures (see aforementioned eye issue – I’m using that excuse for everything).

5) In gardening news, we planted the garden.  Really, Paul planted the garden. (See aforementioned eye issue in which for several days I wasn’t really doing anything but I could direct him where to plant things.)

Beans, San Marzano tomatoes, plum tomatoes, butternut squash, zucchini, peppers, eggplant.  In the middle tubs are pickling cucumbers and in the tiny planter, two lavender plants because I love, Love, LOVE the smell of lavender!

6) Did you catch the owl “decoy” up there?  My mother-in-law’s friend has one and says it keeps birds and other critters away.  Paul has been moving it every few days.  We hope it works.

7) I also bought marigolds to plant around the edges as I heard that helps keep some bugs away.

8) Look what came through the yard yesterday:

Sweet momma and baby.

9) And we woke up to this today:

(darn electric pole/wires…)

More craziness coming up in the next couple of weeks as summer gets started, but another post will come as soon as possible!  Do YOU have big summer plans, knitting or otherwise?

 

 

As Promised – Superheroes, The Shawl Society and the garden

Posted on by .

Tons more knitting to show you and talk about….

I made these incredibly cute Masked Superheo and Burglar Hats for the doodlebugs’ birthday coming up:

IMG_7367 IMG_7366

There is a cartoon called PJ Masks that they like (kids go out in the middle of the night in their pj’s to do superhero-y things) and their masks look just like this!  They knit up so quick – each one took one night and they are relatively easy.  If you have a kid who loves playing superheroes, make this.  And if you are an adult who like to play with the kids, it comes in adult sizes!  There are several variations and even directions to make a lightning bolt on the side.

Truth be told, while these did take just one night to make, I had a couple of bumps along the way.  I started out making a smaller size and realized  when I was almost done with one of them that it really would be way too small, so I had to start over.  Then, when I finished the second one, thinking I was oh-so-great-I’m-just-going-to-bind-off-I-don’t-need-the-directions, I did this:

IMG_7349

Bound off with the corners facing that way.  Instead of this way:

IMG_7351

Do you know how annoying it is to undo a bind off?  Really annoying.  So, do yourself a favor and read the instructions even though you’ve already made one and think you are a know-it-all.

I think they will love them (fingers crossed).

I also made another dishcloth as a hostess-y gift to a breakfast we went to:

IMG_7348

This is the Basic Diamonds pattern from a Leisure Arts booklet of dishcloths.  that one was quick too – two nights.   I gave it with some lemon verbena kitchen hand soap.  I never knew how many people loved to wash dishes with these.  It’s a thing apparently.  Me? I do everything I can NOT to wash dishes so I get VERY creative with filling the dishwasher.

Then there is The Shawl Society.  It is basically a 6-month subscription to patterns designed by Helen Stewart of the Curious Handmade podcast. I “joined” this a few months ago and then waited and waited until June to get the first pattern.  One pattern comes out each month through November and you have no idea what they patterns will be like until you open your email each month.  You join with the intent to get all 6 patterns and you can join at any time to get all the patterns to-date.  After the 6 months is over, they will be for sale individually.   I really like her patterns so I was willing to take the chance of not knowing what they will look like!  The first one I showed you in the last post, Talisman:

IMG_7280

The second one came out in early July and is called the Amulet.  I’ve gotten through the body and will start the lace section soon:

IMG_7368(2)

Something fun and different to do with your knitting.

But the predictable thing has happened.  Now, I have a whole bunch of knitting I need to do to get ready for classes in the fall but all I want to do is knit the Amulet because I know another new pattern will be coming out in a couple of weeks and I’ll be dying to start THAT one.  Ugh – the things knitters have to deal with.  Seriously.

Here are some patterns I am looking at to offer as classes in the fall:

Frida Baby Cardigan: A cute cardi with some cable details.

Sultana Cabled Hat: A cool hat with a pom pom and a cable that uses TWO cable needles – something new and different to learn.

Miss Winkle: An asymmetrical shawl/scarf by one of my favorite designers, Martina Behm.

In non-knitting news, Paul and I spent a year at the Brimfield Antiques show last Friday.  Actually, it was 3 1/2 hours but it felt like a year because it. was. so. hot.  We went very early but it got hot really quickly.  We tried to walk through quickly, trying to spot things we wanted.  A pedal car and/or step stools for Paul to re-do. (I’m totally blanking on the correct work for what he would do to those.  “Re-do” is all I can think of.  You get what I mean.)  And I was looking for square blue Fire King dishes and purple bottles (my newest collecting obsession).  We had some luck this time. Paul found a pedal tractor:

IMG_7362

(and an old window to turn into a picture frame).  And I found two more purple bottles:

IMG_7361

(the two on the right).  Then I got a quart (yes, a quart) of Del’s frozen lemonade to drink on the way back to the truck.

We also hopped downtown last Tuesday to see the Altamont Free Library-sponsored concert in the park.  Rusticator played and we had a nice evening having a picnic dinner and listening to music.

IMG_7357

(Yes, that drummer’s bass is a Samsonite suitcase.  His whole set fits in there somehow, I think.)

In gardening news:

IMG_7363

It was looking incredibly sad a month ago when we returned from vacation.  Then I realized I had never fortified the soil we put in there with anything to help it grow.  So we diligently gave it Miracle-Gro for a few weeks and now it’s doing great!  I’m frustrated with the zucchini since the blossoms keep falling off with no fruit growing.  The Internets say that this means they are male blossoms and they will be pollenating the female somethings eventually and there will be fruit someday.  Supposedly.  And I only have two and a half pea plants out of the whole two rows I planted.  My dad says, “Peas are fussy.”  We set aside a whole half a planter for three rows of corn which the Internets also tell me I will have to hand-pollenate when the time comes.  Should be interesting.

One last thing:  Inquiring minds (my mom’s) want to know why there were no ice cream pictures from our vacation.  Were you wondering the same thing?  Well, I’ll tell you why.  It’s because Maine has TERRIBLE soft ice cream.  We tried three and a half times to get soft ice cream.  Three of the times it was just not good – too soft, too icy-y, not creamy.  The third time we tried to go to a place we were sure we had had good ice cream before and it was closed due to a family emergency.  I did have the absolute best Gifford’s brand hard ice cream in the flavor Campfire S’mores and will spend much of the rest of my summer trying to find it somewhere around here.  It was so. good.  So good that I ate it too fast to take a picture of it.  THAT’s why there were no ice cream pictures.