This one takes the cake..

image1Life happens right? So when you get a small papercut on your finger and have some minimal shoulder pain from repetitively crocheting, what’s one to do? In what is a really grasping and over justified decision I decided to knit with cashmere.

I think this excuse is so incredibly weak I will even laugh about it with you. Nonetheless I decided to pick up the cashmere sweater I cast on during Stitches South. I have to admit it is like I am taking my fingers to the spa. Why haven’t come to this conclusion awhile ago? The sad truth is that in the pursuit or craziness of stash acquisition in the last couple of years I need to work through my stash regardless if it is a luxury fiber or something  of a more rustic nature. No mater what justification we give it yarn is yarn, some just prettier or more enjoyable to knit with than others.



It is like watching paint dry

Progress as of Friday. I sadly do not have many more rounds after this picture was taken.
Progress as of Friday. I sadly do not have many more rounds after this picture was taken.

You know when you are knitting something and you get a case of “just one more row”? It will keep you up for an extra hour may make you late for an appointment. It  also can be especially troublesome when you are knitting stripes because you want to see what is next.

Well in the case of this One Big Granny Square Blanket I think I  have hit the “Dang, these rows are really long!” stage.

Each time I start a new stripe it is taking over 2 hours (Yes that is right you heard it here) 2 (freaking) hours! .It’s a completely lovely project, but  my mind wonders how much longer I will be working on it.

Another sudden realization that hit me is that while I am going to blast though a ton of yarn ( I am using 14 skeins on this project). I am  going to have left over yarn. The left over yarn might be enough to complete a whole new “Mad Hatter” challenge (which frankly I think I am done with this one for this year).

I need to keep truckin’ on this project. I am sure I will get there but it sure is starting to become painful ( not physically). A case of cast-itis is hitting hard and I think it is a virulent strain. I might have to give in, because  the speed of watching this grow is hard. I need to remember that I did give myself permission to work on whatever I wanted this month (since it was vacation heavy) so I think I will keep double crocheting until I finish this blanket. Arghhh!!!!

Some things I have learned


I am in love with crocheting Churchmouse’s One Big Granny Square Blanket. I have other projects but its all I can think about. I want to work on it all the time. I tend to take things for granted and so I thought I would share a few things I am doing on this project in case ( but maybe not likely) that people want to learn about the process I am undertaking on this blanket.

  1. Selecting colors:
    • Since this is just going to be a continual rings of color I have opted to pick out the colors and arrange them in a ring to see how the colors play together. Every set of colors I mix them up ( I keep the beginning round the same ( Its the  pinky red in the picture). I take a picture of  how I have arranged the colors so that I can have a quick reference point on my iPhone.
    • When picking colors I tried to balance cools and warms but also the amount of tonal variation. Brights are important  for pop. I really learned on my Sunshine Day Afghan that the yellow and the aqua were used at a higher ratio than the other colors to balance out the blanket. If you don;t have enough pop spread evenly through out the blanket the eye tends to be drawn to one specific part of the blanked (IMHO).
    • If I was using a neutral color  for a background I might work about balance of where the colors were used in the blanket or the frequency but since they are  just continual stripes its left of an issued
    • I  did think about bleeding but since I plan on machine washing it (It is superwash fiber) I kept the neutral colors to a minimum and was careful about placement.
  2. Weight of Yarn:
    •  I wanted to use DK or less. I don’t want a heavy and since I plan on stash busting these 14 skeins. This is an issue you should consider when making any crochet blanket.
    • Made the chains and double crochets TIGHT, the weight of this blanket is going to pull on the stitches and this is one way to give it some structure, especially since this project has no seams.

That’s all for now.

What I have been up to…

My One Big Grannie Square  blanket by Churchmouse Yarns and Teas
My One Big Grannie Square blanket by Churchmouse Yarns and Teas

I’m back from vacation and I have to say while there was some initial frustration on leaving my crochet hook at home and bringing all of my yarn with my for my granny square blanket, a quick trip to Micheal’s gave me the the crochet hook and the warm fuzzy I was looking for.

I really enjoyed the time away and while exhausted ( we didn’t leave the amusement parks until they shutdown for the night). It was nice to steep away from things for a while. I enjoyed being off the radar and may decide that operating in a more “low-key” mode might be good for the longterm.

I did decide to bust out the spinning wheel and the crochet hook and make some progress on my crochet blanket.

My first handspan swatch
My first handspan swatch




On Vacation

Well…. I am headed to Disneyland this weekend, which made me realize that this month there is a whole lot of travel going on. So what kind of challenge am going to do for this month? No challenge  because I thought my goal for the month could go on vacation too.

I did start a new cardigan be Veera Valamakki in cashmere (aaaahhhhhh… so soft) but I am in no rush and the longer the project takes the more my fingers get to knit  with soft fiber.



See you on the flip side.

Giving yourself permission

It was wonderful to hear all of the goings on with all of my friends and aquintaneces this past weekend. Most of my friends sit at home and knit so it is always great to hear what is going on with everyone.

We showed each other the purchases we had made in the past six months, discussed patterns and designers, and showed the latest projects and yarn we were each working with. Where am I going with this (wait for it)? Most of us talk complain, rave, and talk our knitting and what’s going on in our lives but it can often be hard to have a conversation. Hearing the ladies at the knitting table talk about things led me to me to see something I had not noticed before ( I was at the 100ft view and not the 20,000 feet view) It is the topic of allowing yourself to have permission to do stuff with out inviting stress into your life.

Okay, it is not like I have been operating on some weird rule book on what I am allowed to do… but hearing what everyone else is doing such as test knitting, samples, and buying the latest stuff ( okay I am guilty if you count my new needle cases and set of crochet hooks) made me realize that while this might work for others; not giving myself hard limits on how something has to be or when it has to be done (case in point is trying my hand at spinning) was kind of stressing me out. I think maybe I have overly embraced the “must knit faster” mantra.

I decided I am not going to give myself a hard time for starting something new let alone a new hobby when I have something on the needles, learn a new technique.. or give myself crap about having a gazillion project on the needles.


I mean the only person that I really has power to make me feel bad about all of these things is me… So why not give myself permission to try things or give myself more time..

Stitches South

I was lucky enough to get the opportunity to go to my 1st Stitches South this last week. I have never been to Tennessee so was interested to visit a new state and check out how they do a Fiber and Yarn show down South.

I got to make some new friends and peruse the Marketplace.  A few things jumped out for me seeing Sawdust Co. Tim the owner was handcrafting shaker boxes in his booth and was kind enough to let me take some pictures.

Tim hard at work making  shaker boxes
Tim hard at work making shaker boxes
I couldn't take just one photo
I couldn’t take just one photo
Like Jenga with shaker Boxes
Like Jenga with shaker Boxes
Close up detail
Close up detail

He had boxes that could be used for storage (he has trays too!) and also boxes that function as a yarn box (i.e yarn bowl with cover). His work is truly lovely and I am excited that he is coming  to the Bellevue Art Festival this summer.

I also fell hard for  Camellia Fiber Company Rebekka’s yarn are all hand spun. They ones I saw in the booth ranged from super bulky to aran weight and are minimally spun. They are soft clouds and after some prodding from some friends I broke down and bought some skeins that will be hand dyed  by Rebecca using madder root.

Handmade handspun in Nashville
Handmade handspun in Nashville
Polworth and Mohair aran handspun
Oh the colors.... I want to knit them all
Oh the colors…. I want to knit them all