So, you know how I’ve spent pretty much all year not posting anything and saying that it’s because I’m spending all my knitting time working on a gorgeous masterpiece of a beaded shawl for my sister’s wedding? Well, the pictures finally came back from the photographer! All photos by Meghan Hayes.

Now do you see why it took 6 months to knit?

Pattern: India Stole by Sylvie Beez

Yarn: Rowan Fine Lace in Era, slightly more than 2 balls.

Beads: Size 11 clear glass seed beads

Needles: Size 3

Modifications: None

Here is a detail shot of one half

Knitting this was very time-consuming, but the chart was quite straightforward, so as long as I paid attention it wasn’t difficult. What was amazing was that after knitting it and blocking it, you can fold it in half and see that it is PERFECTLY SYMMETRICAL. That’s why I’m calling this my masterpiece. And she told me it is now her very favorite possession.

Isn't she just the most beautiful bride?

Anyway, I love my sister so much that making this was definitely worth it, and every stitch was knit with true twin love. Her wedding was the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen. It was so touching and heartfelt, and I am so happy to welcome Davin into the family. Congratulations to Salena and Davin on their wedding!

Beautiful and tasty cupcake tower

Posted by: mamakass | November 15, 2012

Somehow fall became super busy

What with my sister’s wedding, school, work, two days stuck at home with Sandy and two weeks of travel for work, I somehow seem completely unable to get anything done on my blog. But I have been knitting, and hopefully I’ll have time to share some of it with you soon. When the photos come back from the wedding photographer, I can’t wait to show you the shawl I made her.

I’ve also knit a sweater in the meantime, but it’s at home blocking and I’m halfway across the country sitting in an airport waiting for a delayed flight and probably going to miss my connectin flight home, so I expect I’ll miss class tonight. If I don’t, that would be great, but if I do, I guess that’s life.

I just was able to start a gift project for someone in my knitting group. We do an awesome Secret Santa  / Pollyanna (depending on which part of the country you’re from) every year and I’m so excited to spoil my recipient. I’m sure (s)he’ll be happy with the present and I should have a great time making it and yay! I hope she loves it because she’s the only one getting knit Christmas presents this year. Well, I guess that’s not true. The boyf’s family loves getting soap socks, and those only take a little bit of time, so I usually don’t count it, but I guess it counts in a strict sense.

I’m going up to Rhinebeck this weekend, which I know is a few weeks late in knitterville, but I went to college up there and there’s a memorial service this weekend for one of the professors. My sister, a good friend of ours, and I are having a girl’s weekend in the Hudson Valley and it will be awesome! (the road trip, antiquing and fall leafing parts anyway) Hopefully I will get some photos of my new knits in the beautiful fall scenery and be able to share them with all of you lovely people. And maybe now that my sister’s epic wedding shawl is over I’ll be able to knit more things. I have to come up with something else to work on because the Christmas present is the opposite of portable knitting (SPOILER ALERT: 7 yarns, ends all over the place and a bunch of one-row stripes, meaning you have to have ends all up and down both sides. The finishing on this project will be barftastic, but the project will be awesome!) Don Juan will tell you so. He’s still smiling.

Posted by: mamakass | September 23, 2012

FO: Lazy Girl Shawl

So, I finished this about 2 weeks ago. It’s for my new coworker’s wife, who I have not yet had the pleasure of meeting, but who must be a lovely woman from all I’ve heard.

Pattern: Lazy Girl Shawl by Megan Peters

Yarn: Zauberball in red and orange and Zauberball Crazy in the blue, gray and red.

Needles: Size 5 circular

Modifications: None.

What I love about this pattern is how because of the slipped stitch ridge, the shawl just sits on your shoulders. There is no need for a shawl pin or worrying about holding it on. That’s great. I am inclined toward making another for myself for that reason.

I only used about a hundred yards of the background color. The pattern leads you to believe that you use the colors in a 2:1 ratio, but it’s really more like 4:1 (400 yards MC to 100 yards CC or 800 yards MC to 200 yards CC) though as it gets longer the ratio would go down because there would be more of the 50/50 top section.

But I do love it!

Posted by: mamakass | July 30, 2012

FO: Dick’s Octopus

So, it’s not that the octopus was easier than I expected, but I accidentally got an extra 2 hours to work on it since my car broke down and I had to take Amtrak for my vacation to see Dick. Hooray! And it’s not so bad that my car broke down, being that I was at home at the time, and I needed to get the trunk fixed anyway. Luckily I live somewhere that I have other easy options for travel and didn’t have to cancel my vacation.

Anyway, without further ado, I give you my completed Ravhellenic 2012 project!


Pattern: Octopus by Hansi Singh

Yarn: Sliver Moon Farm Worsted BFL in Blood (MC) and Knit Picks City Tweed HW in Habanero (CC)

Needles: Size 3 dpn

Modifications: none

This pattern was by far the easiest amigurumi I’ve ever made. The last one was such a pain, I swore I’d never make one again, but then Dick wanted this for his birthday, and I couldn’t possibly turn him down because I love him so much. I guess he must like them, since it was his birthday 3 years ago that I made my last toy, the Murloc.

Anyway, hooray for finishing the games!

And guess what? Don Juan still likes it.

Posted by: mamakass | July 26, 2012

The Ravhellenic Games

So, even though I am very disappointed about the name change for the games this year, I can’t wait to compete!

Since I still have a LOOONG way to go on my sister’s wedding shawl before the wedding in early October, I didn’t want to spend all of August working on a big project for the games, so I chose something small and manageable so as not to take away too much from the shawl. Wait until you guys see the shawl. I promise it’s worth an entire summer of boring blog content.

So my entry for the games was chosen by my boyfriend, who loves Octopi. The benefit of this project is that even though it’s small, it’s not something I feel particularly comfortable making, since I have rarely made any amigurumi in the past, and the one I did make, I found horribly fiddly and awful. So: a challenge for the games that won’t take up the whole month! The perfect project!

The project:

Octopus by Hansi Singh (rav link)

Those legs look like a real challenge to me.

I present to you the yarn I will be using for this project. The main yarn is on the left (Stashbusting! Yay! The rest of that yarn used to be The Leaf Sweater) and the one on the right will be for the bottom of the tentacles. I think the neps will look like the suckers. I purposefully took this picture so it would be in the spirit of the Ravhellenic games.

Posted by: mamakass | July 21, 2012

Dick’s Hat

I had some leftover yarn from making Dick’s hoodie, so I made him a hat.

Pattern: Watch Cap by Jared Flood from Knits Men Want (Dick’s mom gave it to me for Christmas. I figured it was a hint to knit for him…I was right. He loves them!)

Yarn: Lion Brand Wool-Ease Chunky in Charcoal and Silver Gray

Needles: Size 10.5

I used the Watch Cap pattern as a basis for this hat, made the ribbing a little shorter and added some stripes until I ran out of the light gray. Dick loves the hat because it covers all of his ears. He’ll be so warm this winter!

Posted by: mamakass | July 14, 2012

Grenadine Sweater

So, I finished this sweater a long time ago, but I’ve been going crazy with all the things I’ve had to do lately, so I haven’t had a chance for a photo shoot.

This is definitely my favorite cardigan I’ve ever made.

Pattern: Grenadine by Amy Christoffers

Yarn: I held one end of Classic Elite Yarns Miracle in red with one end of Knit Picks Stroll in Merlot Heather and got right on gauge

Needles: Size 8

Modifications: None

This pattern was incredibly easy to follow and resulted in a wonderful sweater that I’m just so happy with. There’s really nothing about it that I don’t like, except that it’s a wool/alpaca/tencel/nylon blend when it’s all said and done, and summer is too hot to wear it. Oh…if only it were fall.

Posted by: mamakass | July 7, 2012

Finished Yarn

I finally finished spinning something this year!

This yarn took FOREVER to spin! It’s 4 ounces of laceweight n-plied merino wool. It’s extremely soft, and it’s also 883 yards! No wonder it took so long! It’s a little uneven, but I’m still happy with it. I can’t wait to see how it knits up!

Posted by: mamakass | July 7, 2012

TNNA swag

I went to TNNA this year for the first time for work. It was totally aweseme. I think my favorite part was the fashion show.

I took a class called “Knit it Now!” which, according to the description was supposed to be about the latest trends in yarns. Well, it was, presuming you consider novelty yarns to be the latest trends. The class was taught by Trendsetter yarns, who sell some of the crazier novelty yarns I’ve ever seen. I will say, however, they feel a lot nicer than a lot of the ones I used when I first started knitting. I wonder if they were the company who made the yarn for the first scarf I ever knit. The class would have been great if I owned a knitting store (which was really a good assumption on their part, considering that’s the focus for TNNA) because they taught you how to get customers to buy add-ons in the store and how to get rid of odd lots.

Anyway, I learned how to Tunisian crochet in the class! They gave me a gorgeous Tunisian crochet hook! They gave me yarn to make a scarf! It’s the ugliest scarf I’ve ever made in my life! (with the possible exception of the first one, which wasn’t even a rectangle because I kept accidentally adding stitches.)

Yes. That yarn IS variegated with fun fur.

I also got some free samples of Dark Horse Yarn Fantasy

These yarns were packaged so cute with little icee cup lids and knitting needle straws! Unfortunately, I already started knitting with it before I took this picture, so you can’t see the cute. This yarn is incredibly soft and wonderful feeling for being an acrylic / nylon blend. It must be microdenier. My favorite thing about it is the occasional red in the gray. I’m using these to make Triangle Loop for the woman I went to the show with, since she so politely let me have her sample.

I also got this beautiful chain-plied silk yarn from Vijay Fibers. Unfortunately, it’s not on Ravelry. The yarn is listed on the tag as a 20/2 x 5 ply. Bad luck, though…I don’t know silk counts as well as I know cotton counts, or I’d understand the exact weight. Either way, there are about 160 yards and it’s about a DK weight. My guess is the company is new into American hand knitting, since it’s labeled more like an industrial yarn would be than a craft yarn.

Last but not least is the AMAZINGLY gorgeous Jade Sapphire Silk Cashmere! I got 2 skeins and will be sure to make something amazing with them. I’m thinking of a very lightweight short-sleeved cardi. We’ll see thought. I’m very excited about it. 

Posted by: mamakass | May 7, 2012

Traveling, Knitting, Yarn and Work

So, this week I’m on a business trip down south visiting with clients and talking textiles. This is all well and good, but I do always find traveling to be a little tiring. Instead of spending 8 hours a day at work and the remainder socializing, I end up spending over 12 hours split between being on the road chatting with our salesman and meeting with clients. By the time I get back to the hotel, I’m too tired to do much of anything. To that end, I always find business trips to be terrible wastes of a week, as nothing gets done for any of my hobbies.

In other bad news, my earbuds shocked me in the ear canal on the airport and now my ear hurts. Hopefully it will go away, but it still feels shocky and it’s been more than 12 hours.

Something new happened to me today that’s never happened before. When I got to my hotel and went up to my room, there was a woman in there. They had given me the key to a room that was already occupied. I felt extremely bad for the woman I walked in on, but luckily she was decent and seemed to understand that there had been confusion. I still feel out of sorts about it, and definitely plan to keep the chain on the door for the duration of my stay, lest someone walk in on me in a less-than-decent state.

I brought a little knitting with me. Some fish and the epic shawl I’m working on for my sister’s wedding. I’m not sure if I’ve discussed the shawl on my blog yet, but it’s going to be an absolutely gorgeous laceweight beaded stole. I am very excited, but I’m definitely behind schedule knitting it because it takes just too much thought and I need to knit 4 rows a day, which I haven’t been doing.

It turns out there’s a yarn store within close walking distance of my hotel. They closed at 5 today, but are open until 9 tomorrow, so I’ll probably stop in to see the goods.

I seem to be in a rambly mood today, but perhaps that’s because I have nothing in particular to discuss, and no one in particular to talk to, what with staying in a hotel and all.

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