Monday, December 31, 2007

It's all a mystery

So my friends, another year comes to an end.

It's been a year for healing and changes, both good and bad....but a new tomorrow is on the horizon and I'm excited!

For every new beginning something must end and I thought this beautiful picture I took tonight was a fitting last sky of 2007.....It's the last few minutes of tonight's sundown, a glorious last hurrah....symbolism, anyone? :)

Now I'd like to invite you to an exciting new beginning - I've been really enjoying participating in the monthly Sockdown over at the Sock Knitters Anonymous Group over on Ravelry.

Every month we have a different sock "challenge" to help us learn new skills and expand our sock knitting horizons. We now number over 2600 members (!!) and every month we all knit a variation on two different themes. It's been really amazing to see how differently each knitter interprets the challenge yet makes customizations to make the finished sock their own.

We have 2 months to complete each challenge and all that do are entered into a drawing for some really juicy prizes!

January's Sockdown challenge is a "Mystery Sock- Intarsia" or any pattern by Cookie A, brilliant designer of Monkey Sock fame!

Well, yours truly was asked to test knit the Mystery sock! Never having attempted intarsia, I accepted with much trepidation (and the caveat that if it looked like ass, I was cutting and running! LOL) But I wanted a challenge when I signed on so I plunged in.....and I'm really glad I did!!

Now I can't give away the mystery but I can give you a tiny peek in the guise of showing off my latest mani and some spiffy new knails! Have a peek......

Just look at those pretty stitches knails!

Here's another view

This is OPI Brights, "Bright Lights, Big Color" - it's a really pretty, bright coral with a subtle golden shimmer. It's so bright and happy, just right for those grey winter days!

Now about the sock, it's a wonderful design by our SKA administrator Sara, aka Fyberduck. It has a February 14 theme but it's not really a "holiday" sock ie: it can be worn at any time and not look odd or out of place. As you can see there is a bit of beautiful lace and a very clever (and very small!) intarsia design that I actually executed without invoking Armageddon! It's also a design that would look very cool in a plethora of and red for you gothy types or juicy brights like hot pink with lime or tangerine and turquoise come to mind.

So why not make 2008 the year you accept the challenge and join us over at Ravelry?

This is not a new pic but it's one of my favorites of my Best Boy, my P-Man....

He kinda looks like he's peepin' out in excitement wondering what new experiences 2008 will bring....more chicken and organic salmon perhaps? :)

No matter what 2008 brings here at Chez Blog de Fluffy we hope it brings you, all my wonderful readers along with it! Y'all have given Pumpkin and I so very much and we are very grateful!

The P-Man and I wish you a happy, healthy New Year with lots of love! See ya in 2008!!

Monday, December 24, 2007

Today and everyday

No matter what you celebrate, we are ALL God's children and my wish for all of us today and everyday is

Peace On Earth

Enjoy an angel's voice singing my favorite carol and have a

Happy Healthy Holiday!

And don't forget to burn your bayberry candles tonight for good luck!

Friday, December 21, 2007

Down to the wire...

Nothing like taking it to the last minute but I finally finished my last hand knit gift! With 3 days to spare, go me! Never mind that it still has to get wrapped, taken to the post office and travel many miles before it finds a home but my loved ones are used to Christmas in January :)

I give you the much loved and ubiquitous Monkey Socks!


Monkey Socks by the brilliant and prolific Cookie A.

Dream in Color Smooshy in the Wisterious colorway

Magic Loop, 32" addi turbo US #1.5 (2.5mm)

Mods: I upsized these quite a bit because they are for a fluffy friend. I went with a simple 2x2 rib because I was afraid the twisted rib suggested would be binding. I added pattern repeats to the leg and then added a mini flap and gusset plus a short row heel for better fit and more depth in the heel. If anyone is interested in modifying Monkeys for the ample leg/foot I'll be glad to share more specific mods, just send me an email!

These were a fun knit and relatively fast considering I used almost an entire skein of Smooshy! As an aside, I have sung the praises of this wonderful yarn many times however the weight is not very consistent...the gauge can vary from fingering weight to sport weight! For these socks I got a gauge of 7.5 - 8 sts/inch where I got a gauge of 9 sts/inch on the very same needles for my Caramel Apple Twisted Flower socks. (Ravelry link) so be careful!

Having said all that, the Smooshy is soft, lofty...smooshy and just a pleasure to knit! The color is glorious, deep and rich...Did you know the new 400 color series is due out in January? w00t!! I can't wait! (like I need another skein of sock yarn in this millennium, hee!)

Even my knitting supervisor and sock protector loves these socks too...

I know Pumpkin will be sorry to see them go but he'll make the sacrifice for anyone who appreciates a handknit :)

I'm glad everyone enjoyed my "favorite things" post and it's been really cool to see my readers making their own lists. Unfortunately one of my not so favorite things has again become a reality...two nights ago my computer completely died again. I suppose I should be grateful, it's been 10 months since I had the motherboard, video card, hard drive and memory replaced and I believe that's a record for crapway Gateway! Anyway I'm back on my well love but 10 months more elderly 8+ year old laptop so posting may be spotty.

The P-Man and I will be thinking of y'all and wishing you a happy holiday and we'll see you when we can!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

My favorite things....

Since I'm doing a bit of clandestine knitting these days I thought I would share some of the things in my life that make me happy.

Oprah's got her favorites, here are some of mine....(and you can actually afford them! woot!)

This amazing soap

I read about this wonderful product on a message board and being in possession of extremely sensitive skin I thought it might be worth a try.


It is not truly a soap as it has none of the harsh additives of soaps. It is made to restore the skin's natural pH and protective "mantle". I dunno know about all that but I will say it is the ONLY soap I will use. I recommended it to my Mom who has very troublesome Rosacea....cleared it up in less than a week! Recommended it to a friend with an acne problem, he saw improvement after ONE use and now you'd never know he had a single blemish in his life!

You can get it here and trust me, you'll be very glad you did!

Florida's beautiful skies...

And her beaches at night...

Seche Vite!!

This topcoat makes your nails strong but flexible so they can survive life's daily assaults. Seche Vite literally translates to "Dry Quick" in French and it lives up to it's the time you finish your last nail, your first is dry! Plus, this topcoat keeps my manicure looking fresh *at least* two weeks, often three! (and yes, I do my own housework and everything!) Good stuff and the only topcoat I'll use! Go here if you crave perfect knails!

Best hand and body cream EVER!

Delicious fresh, clean scent. Lovely, rich, creamy and not greasy and makes your skin so so so soft! Get some here.

Sunflower Sprouts!!!!

I admit, I'm a sprout lover but these are the BEST!! Delicious flavor and a nice chewy leaf at the end...I adore these on a nice crusty whole wheat bread sammie with a bit of cream cheese, some roasted garlic and a sprinkle of green jalepeno sauce...mmmm.....

Who would have thought a fat girl could wax so poetic about sprouts? So you know they must be extra yummy! :)

My all time favorite book...

Get a copy here and have a peek at this book too...another amazing book by this brilliant author.

Bayberry candles - they always smell like Christmas to me!

I love the warm, inviting scent of bayberry and it is tradition to burn them as well as gift them during the yuletide season.

Legend has it that the Bay Tree gave shelter to the Holy Family during a storm. Sweethearts who light bayberry candles when they are separated during the holidays will be united by the bayberry's gentle scent. According to tradition, a bayberry candle lit on Christmas Eve and allowed to burn down to the nub will bring good luck, health and wealth for the coming year. Being very much a woman on the superstitious side, the scent of bayberry is thick and heady around Casa de Fluffy on Christmas Eve, rest assured :)

Since it is a knitting blog, you know knitting and knails are some of my favorite things. Here's my latest...

A color you rarely see here at FKD, in my knitting or my knails -- PURPLE!!

I don't dislike purple, it's just not one of my favorites but I'm loving these!

The yarn is more Smooshy sock yarn in the Wisterious colorway,and my knails are OPI Designer Series "Original" (the designer series is great cause they have a special brush that makes the perfect mani even easier!)

Both have a lot more richness and depth than my photos can convey - the yarn has so many shades of lavender, violet and pink and is really beautiful and the knails are a kind of holographic glittery warm violet. More branching out colorwise, this is becoming a very fun habit!

Of course my very favorite thing is this little cutie...

Wanna share some of your favorite things?

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

WTF Wednesday returns and a hard act to follow

Random wtf things that have made me go hmmmm lately or You too can crawl inside FKDeb's head :)

1a - Does Beyonce looking like she's starring in a porn flick make YOU want digital TV?

1b - Can Beyonce BE in any more endorsements?

2- My guilty pleasure shame... I LOVE the Spice Girls and I'm so glad they're back. I even endured that vapid Victoria's Secret Special just to see them. Now that's love, baybee!! Look at how cool they look:

Now and Then

Doesn't it really, really, really make you wanna zigazig ha?

3- This:

That King Herod, always after me Lucky Charms! :)

Shamelessly nicked from this hilarious website

So what random wtf thing makes you go hmm these days??

Onto a bit of the knit....

Thank you all for the rousing response to the Caramel Apple Twisted Flower Socks. Your compliments really made my week! Y'all should knit a pair, they are really fun and I miss them!

The Caramel Apples are a hard act to follow but...cute in their own right, I give you my latest pair...

These are my penultimate pair of gift socks for this year...aren't they a breath of spring to come?


Marigold Socks by Pamela Wynne

Opal Petticoat #1290

Toe-up, Magic Loop 32" circ, US#1 (2.25)

Mods: The socks are written for a wrapped short row toe and heel. I switched to the Turkish cast-on for the toe and a yo short row heel. I also eliminated the ribbed cuff and just did a 5 row garter stitch edge which I feel blends in well with the look of the sock.

This was a very easy and very fun knit. The pattern is impeccable and it produces a really good looking sock. The lace is way simple yet attractive and as I mentioned before, this would be a perfect first toe-up sock adventure for you toe-up virgins out there!

Pumpkin wants to wish everyone a Happy Chanukah and a week that's full of latkes and dreidels (and knitting of course!)

See ya!

Friday, November 30, 2007

It's the Eighth Wonder of the Modern World...

Ok it's not the eighth wonder it's just one of the world's prettiest socks! Just look....

It's the Caramel Apple Twisted Flower Socks!

A closer look

Which side do you think is more photogenic? :)

One last peek...

Now this, my friends, is a serious pair of socks!!


Pattern: Twisted Flower Socks by the amazing Cookie A

Size: M

Magic loop, US #1.5 (2.5 mm) 32" addi turbo

Dream in Color Smooshy, Chinatown Apple colorway


Cookie A is a designing goddess so why mess with perfection altho I confess I tried to! (apparently I am genetically unable to knit a pattern unaltered)

The pattern calls for a US #1.5 for the medium size but it "seemed" a bit too big because of the stretchiness of the lace (we'll just ignore how much cables, even tiny ones, pull in the fabric for now...) So I went down to a US#1 and ended up with a too small sock! Of course I didn't listen to that nag inside my head until I was past the gusset on sock #1...D'OH!! So I am once again back to the school of WWCAD - what would Cookie A do! hehe!

The pattern is immaculate and easy to follow altho the teenie cables really slow down the knitting flow even when cabling without a cable needle. These are definitely not mindless TV time socks. I moaned about the fussy cables while I was knitting the sock but truth be told now that I'm finished, I really miss them!

I think the yarn I chose is perfect and I'm so completely happy that I broke out of my color rut and got acquainted with brown!! The color is so rich and full of depth yet it enhances the texture rather than detracts from it.

These will be leaving Casa de Fluffy soon as they are a holiday gift. I hope the new owner loves them as much as I do and to ease my pain, I KNOW I'll be knitting these again!

I think Pumpkin looks like he'll miss them too, doesn't he?

Actually I think he looks like he just got caught with his paw in the wild salmon jar, doesn't he?

Have a great weekend!!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

To those that celebrate...

Happy Thanksgiving

Florida Style!!!

Have a wonderful day and enjoy your blessings!!!

Friday, November 16, 2007

Random Friday

Thanks for all the compliments on La Dolce Vita!

I'm hoping my SIL likes it as much as everyone here! I'll try to get some modeling pics once it's gifted so you can see it on a real body cause it sure is pretty and will look stunning with her olive-toned beauty!

Regarding my Veteran's Day post...I know lots of us have seen the familiar poppy boutonniere but I'm guessing many of us didn't know the origin of the poppy as a symbol of remembrance, me included.

The poem I posted In Flander's Fields, written by Canadian field doctor John McCrae during World War I is the inspiration for using poppies for remembering and honoring our veterans. He wrote it after presiding, in lieu of having no Chaplain, over the funeral of a close friend and comrade and was touched by the poppies growing amid the headstones in a small cemetery in Belgium. I think the poem is just as touching and important 93 years later...sadly.

Now for some less sobering randomness, look what I got in the mail.....

How cool is this??

Anyone who's ever gotten an email from me knows my address is Altho many of the online losers are sure that has some deviant meaning, the origin of the name is simply that an ex-boyfriend who was an Aussie ex-pat from Perth gave it to me. Cherry Ripes are a very popular candy Down Under and it was his Aussie way of calling me his sweetie (awwww!)

Donna, knitter extraordinaire and owner of the cutest whisk broom lovin' bunny ever was sweet enough to think that I should taste my namesake and so she sent me a bag of Cherry Ripes straight from Oz!! So YUMMY!! And that purple-y black something else peeking from behind the candy is a really yummy, gorgeous skein of cashmere sock yarn from The Knittery in the colorway, Midnight! (no Beth, you can't have it!) Thank you so much Donna, both your gifts were totally wonderful!

Because I had a few requests I've added new pattern to my side bar - my
Extra Warm Kureyon Wristers
in two sizes! Enjoy!

One last bit of random before I go, heh...

On Ravelry, I belong to the Sock Knitters Anonymous Group (as an aside, a very fun, active group with a cool Sockdown Challenge every month - come and join us!)

I posted this to the group and the subject still intrigues me so I'm posting it again here....

In one of the Ravelry forums there is thread titled "Not feeling the sock love?" or something to that affect...

It was a thread for people who don't knit socks and don't get sock knitting (Imagine that???? Hehe)

Some of the comments really surprised me tho -- many posters responded that they don't knit socks because "they don't wear socks" or they "don't wear handknit socks".

This indicated to me that unless the knitter is wearing the socks herself, she's not knitting them! This concept really surprised me cause here at Chez Fluffy, 90% of the socks I knit are for someone else. I would also say that at least 50% of the other items I knit are for someone else too.

So what do you all think, are most knitters "selfish"? ***

***I used the word selfish in quotes because I don't think knitting for one's self is a bad thing, it was just a surprising observation as a reason not to knit socks.

Lastly, a random pic of my favorite kitty man

Getting a random and much appreciated head scratch!

Have a wonderful week, see you before Turkey Day!!

Monday, November 12, 2007

Thank You

In Flanders Fields

by John McCrae, May 1915

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep,
though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

Thank you, dear soldier, your honor and bravery is remembered...

Friday, November 09, 2007

Busy, busy, busy!!

Why is it, despite planning and executing holiday knitting year round, I always feel sorta *crunched* this time of year?

The good news is I've been a busy knitter and that puts me in the homestretch for meeting holiday knitting goals!

I don't mean to imply that I don't love holiday knitting, I do!! And my recipients love my handknits just as enthusiastically which thrills me to no end! There is nothing better than seeing someone truly happy to receive a handknit and love it so much that they put it on immediately and wear it with a huge smile on their face!

I do however confess I have weeded out the less than enthusiastic from my list, I wouldn't want you to think it's all knitting Utopia here at blog de fluffy :)

I have so much to show you so I'll jump right in!

Here's a pair of Kureyon Wristers I whipped up...

I'm not the biggest Kureyon fan cause despite it's glorious color I find it horribly scratchy and I hate pulling extraneous crap out of my yarn! But I had this pretty colorway in my stash and I wanted some really warm wristers - and believe me, Kureyon knit at 7 sts/inch makes for a dense, toasty wrister!


Exactly one skein of Kureyon, colorway #150

My own pattern

Magic loop, US#4 (3.5mm)

I literally used every inch of the skein for these. Once knit I washed them in baby shampoo and then while still wet massaged some Redken "Soft" hair conditioner into them and rinsed very well. Now they are super soft and super cuddly!

Next up, I give you La Dolce Vita!

Here she is lying down after a bath...

(The color is kinda off here, it's not quite so orange)

And the money shot...

This color is spot on on my monitor - it's a vibrant, sunny coral


La Dolce Vita Tank by Dipsy Doodle

9 skeins Knitpicks Shine Worsted in Coral

US# 3 (3.25mm) Addi Lace needle

I totally LOVE how this tank came out!! I think it is truly lovely!

It's an original design by Angela of Dipsy Doodle and as soon as I saw it I knew it would be perfect for the person I plan to give it to. The pattern is not for the feint of heart tho!

Altho the lace isn't really difficult, there is no guidance for maintaining the decreases in pattern so a knitter has to "knit on her feet" - not at all mindless but not terribly difficult if you pay attention.

Mods: I felt the armscythe as written was too deep and the V-Neck, too shallow, so I redesigned both to suit my needs. I added an extra inch to the body length. I did short row shoulders and used a 3 needle bind off for the shoulder seams. The pattern calls for a crochet edging to the neck and armscythe but I wanted a more finished look so after sewing the tank together I picked up stitches around the neck and arms and did 3 row garter stitch neck and arm bands to match the garter ridges in the pattern.

All in all, I'm very pleased with this top and despite all the mods I think it's a wonderful design (thanks Angela!) and will probably knit it again, albeit not too soon!

Wait, there's even more - I told you I was busy, busy, busy! I'm still working on my Caramel Apple Twisted Flower socks but since that was my only WIP, I cast on for a new pair of socks - check off another holiday gift, woot!

Here's my Marigold Sock...

I'm using Opal Petticoat #1290 which I think is *perfect* for this pattern! Isn't it pretty?

I'm loving this pattern cause it's really cute yet super easy! It's become my "mindless" sock when I need a respite from teenie cables and because it's such an easy pattern it's infinitely more portable than the Caramel Apples! BTW, this would be a GREAT pattern for those toe-up sock virgins out there - if you're looking for the perfect pattern to get your feet wet with, imo, this is the one! I subbed the Turkish Cast-on (of course!) for the short row toe as written so that makes it even easier.

Whew, that was a busy post! I leave you with this cute pic of the P-man...I love it because it appears as if you are looking directly into his eyes, especially if you click to embiggen...

You're getting're being hypnotized...send organic wild salmon treats...hehehe...

Have a great weekend/week and don't stress about holiday knitting too much - it's still early :)

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Can it really be November already?

Sheesh time sure does fly, doesn't it? Wasn't it just Independence Day?

At least it's gotten a bit cooler here and we managed not to meet Mr. Noel so a girl's gotta be grateful for the little things! (one more month to avoid the big "H", doo dah, doo dah!!)

I've been knitting A LOT or should I say re-knitting :(

I completed the first sock of the gorgeous Caramel Apple Twisted Flower sock past the gusset and once again I failed to heed that nagging little voice in my head telling me the socks were too snug! So of course the little voice bitch slapped me and I had to rip out all those annoying tedious pretty little cables! You would think she would speak up sooner, wouldn't you? heh...

But the Smooshy yarn is beyond stunning and sooo delightful to knit with I almost didn't mind a second take, almost! I switched to the #1.5 needles the pattern recommends (duh! but it *seemed* too big with a gauge of 8 sts/in on 72 sts cause the cables aren't all over the sock!!) and all is well!

So now I'm about an inch away from starting the toe decreases on the first sock but I wanted to show you this gorgeous heel...

Isn't that a thing of beauty?** You can really see the subtle nuances of color in this amazing yarn and the pattern is just breathtaking! It's about as far from "mindless knitting" as it gets and as I alluded to before the tiny cables are really tedious, even without using a cable needle but the end result will be so worth it! No more pics til a finished pair tho!

** the "beautiful" knails are shockingly NOT OPI, they are OPI's edgy little sister Nicole (the line is named after OPI's founder's daughter) I was sneaking in one last summery mani with the lovely shimmery pink called Provocative Pink

I got so embroiled in the Caramel Apple socks I neglected my Dolce Vita tank a bit but I'm on the home stretch now. I should finish the knitting this weekend and will give it a wash and a block and then seaming town, here I come! So in other words those pics will be coming soon too.

We may be low on the knitting pics here at Blog de Fluffy but I do have something spectacular to show you. Check these goodies out...

This is a slightly belated birthday gift all the way from England thanks to the kind and generous Emma! That's cashmere and silk bay-bee!!

The plump skeins on top are Posh Lucia sock yarn and the stunning purple shaded skeins are about 1200 yards of laceweight silk from Fyberspates - aren't I the luckiest knitter?? Thank you SO MUCH sweet Emma! I see some yummy socks and a killer shawl in my future thanks to you!

Look! Even the nosey P-Man is in love...

I guess he's just doing his job, he is my knitting supervisor after all!

On a side note, Michaela, a good friend of Emma, is raising some much needed funds for Emma's son Oliver. Oliver should be the poster child for making the most of every single day despite disability but unfortunately his winning "getter done" attitude doesn't pay for the VERY expensive adaptive equipment Oliver needs. Michaela is sewing together a cozy, colorful blanket that will be raffled off with the proceeds going to Oliver's Fund. If you can help either with a donation, a few knitted squares or buying a raffle ticket or two (a mere $2 each!) wont you go pay Michaela a visit and do what you can? You can even get an early start on Knit Unto Others 2007!

What we lack in knitting here at Blog de Fluffy, we make up for in handsome kitty man pics so here's another for the P-Man fans...

Kitty Dude is so photogentic, isn't he? :)

Enjoy your weekend and your extra hour of sleep! (YAY!)

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Breakout!....well sorta

When situations never change
Tomorrow looks unsure
Don't leave your destiny to chance
What are you waiting for
The time has come to make your break
~~ Swing Out Sister

I just loved this song when it came positive and powerful about seizing the day and breaking out of the ruts we all fall into, the too comfortable and familiar patterns we fall back on again and again.

Do you find yourself in a knitting rut? Do you need to breakout too?

Of course change is scary so sometimes we fall back on what we know best and pink is most often my fall back color when I knit. Yes, green is my favorite color but not everyone loves it as I do. Orange is my current heartthrob but even more so than green, orange isn't for everyone and often something of an acquired taste.

Pink seems to be universally pleasing...sweet and girly, hot and passionate.

Pink can even be a blends beautifully with browns, blacks, blues, greens, even orange!

Ok even I can see thru all this sugary prose so I'll just come clean....

I knit another pair of pink socks :)

Exhibit A:


Basic Garter Rib socks

Toe- up with a Turkish cast-on

My first toe-up mini flap and gusset, yo short row heel (woot!!)

2 skeins Lorna's Laces shepherd sock, Flamingo Stripe colorway (a lovely birthday gift from Jes, thanx hunny!)

Magic loop, size #1 (2.25mm) 32" circ

Tubular bind off (I LOVE this bind off for toe up socks, so stretchy and pretty and easy to do!)

I wasn't sure I would love the stripes of the colorway as I'm not much of a stripe girl but it's such a juicy, lively pink and it looks nice and tweedy in the garter rib. Knitting with the Lorna's Laces was pure pleasure too - so soft yet crisp, tidy stitch definition - just a perfect sock yarn.

Now for the breakout portion of our broadcast. I give you my new sock -

It's Cookie A's Twisted Flower pattern. It's brilliant and it's BROWN!!!

How's that for breaking out? This is the first time I've EVER knit with brown yarn...whoo hoo!!

I must say, if I had to lose my brown virginity, this is the yarn to do it with! It's Dream in Color Smooshy in the Chinatown Apple colorway and it's delicious! (get it? Apple, delicious? yuk yuk yuk) The depth of color of this yarn is a marvel! Brick, warm rusty brown, greenish brown - glorious! A knitter girl could get used to this brown thing.

Of course brown is so scarce around Casa de Fluffy, the P-Man doesn't quite know what to make of it...

I'll be back next week with an update on the Dolce Vita tank. Enjoy your weekend and breakout a little too, ok?

Thursday, October 18, 2007

It's raining, it's pouring...still

I'm not complaining mind you, I realize there are lots of places suffering with terrible drought right now and rain is certainly WAY preferable to the big "H"!

During the rainy season, it does rain here every day but it's usually just a brief sprinkle (most often during rush hour traffic, of course!) For the last month we've had torrential rain for a good portion of every day.

While rain can be an inconvenience, it's beauty and it's usefulness is unquestionable.

I love to watch the storms rolling in from my balcony....I can see the thunderheads and watch the rain falling in thick grey curtains in the distance...

Isn't it beautiful?

Onto the knitting...

Since holiday time draws near, thoughts turn to gift knitting and one of my favorite knitted gifts is fingerless mitts or wristers.

To that end I've posted a link on my sidebar that is super easy, super cute, easy to size up or down, unisex and takes less than one skein of koigu! I did post about it once before but it was way at the bottom of a very long post so I thought I'd be a sport and chat it up again :)

In addition, if you're into mitts, there's a great new KAL in town!

Photobucket - Video Image Hosting

It's the Fall Fingerless Mitts KAL and Keri is the lovely hostess!

There's lots of pretty mitt eye candy, lots of free patterns and lots of sharing and companionship - the things knitters do best!

So if you have chilly hands or know anyone that does, come join us and knit some fall mitts!

As for me, I'm still working on my Flamingo Stripe socks but there's nothing exciting to see. It's my "grab and go - hurry up and wait" project so I'm not knitting on it all that much.

I am excited about this new WIP tho, look....

It's a new cotton tank I'm making as a gift...isn't the color yummy? At least something around here is bright and sunny!

I'm only showing this little bit because altho it is a gift and the recipient doesn't read FKD, I'm actually finished with the back and well into the front so I'll have an FO soon and I'll show y'all the whole enchilada then :)

Remember that big, fluffy, luxurious bed the P-Man has been enjoying? Well as we all know, explaining why a cat does what he does is an exercise in futility!

I had my blocking board on my bed to block the Esprit Tank and seems my P-Man likes a firm "mattress" too!

I can't get him off the thing and when I fold it up to put away, he meows and paces until I bring it out again! Silly kitty man!

To those that are off to Rhinebeck this weekend once again, bite me have a wonderful time! To my hapless fellow non-attendees, have a great weekend and knit lots!

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Wanna see something REALLY beautiful???

This is my good friend Shawna...WEARING HER NEW ESPRIT TANK!!

Doesn't she look lovely and isn't it a PERFECT fit? I'm so happy :):)

Happy Birthday, My Friend!!

Sunday, October 07, 2007

I have so much to show (and tell) you!

The good thing about non-stop rain for over 3 weeks is when the heavens finally decide to shine a little light on this fluffy knitter's lowly existence, I have LOTS of FOs and other good stuff to share so get ready for a picture *fluffy* post, heh!

Since my birthday was 3 weeks ago it's about time I showed you two of my favorite knitting related pressies...

This was hand made for me by the talented and generous Sallee aka Nana Sadie Rose...

needle case front

needle case inside

Isn't this adorable? I LOVE the fabric! In fact, I told Sallee I wish I had jammie bottoms made out of it too cause it's warm cozy flannel!

Now we all know FKD is of the ahem, hoarder persuasion so thinking my DPNs will fit in this beautiful case is laughable BUT my crochet hook collection will fit perfectly and it will be a very welcome improvement over their current residence of a ziploc sandwich bag!

If you want a needle holder of your own or one of Sallee's gorgeous original bags, go click on the link and pay her a visit!

Thanks Sallee, I love my new kitty needle holder!

The reason I don't own one of Sallee's amazing bags is I'm not much of a bag person! Shocking, I know...the one obsession I don't have, right? :)

When I started back to knitting 5 years ago I was desperate to find other knitters so I found a clear vinyl knitting bag, thinking if people could see my knitting while I was out and about, they might ask me about it. And they did!

But despite all the amazing knitting bags out there, I've stuck with my clear vinyl...until now....

Look what I got for my birthday!!

Isn't this a hoot?

It's made by a company called Angry Little Girls and it was a gift from my good bud Laura!
It's such a fun bag in my favorite color! I especially love all the little pockets and compartments for every notion you can think of! I don't think I'll be wearing it to church but it is certainly a conversation piece! Thanks Auntie La!

Now for some knitting...I finally finished the albatross Esprit Tank!!

This project has been on my needles longer than any other since I learned to knit!! Miles and miles of sportweight garter stitch, I thought I'd never get thru it! In fact I came *this close* to abandoning it quite a few times but I'm glad I didn't! Have a look at why...

pretty collar

border close up

the money shot!

folded border


Elann Esprit Tank (free pattern from

size #6 addi turbo 32" circular needle

size D crochet hook

10 skeins Elann Esprit cotton/elastic yarn, colorway Capri Blue

2 skeins Elann Sonata for trim, colorway Indigo Gold

Mods: The largest size this pattern was written for was 36". I upsized this to a 56". I continued the drop stitch pattern over the whole tank rather than over just the midriff as the pattern suggested. The crochet border as written was WAY too big and came out like a giant ruffle - not the look I was going for! - So I kinda redneck engineered (a phrase and action coined by Kris!) the crochet motifs and decreased half the stitches in between each motif to have the border lay flat. I also used a smaller crochet hook.

In the end, altho the knitting was quite a slog, I'm very happy with the final product. It's winging it's way to it's recipient as I write this and I think she'll love it too! At least I hope so!

It's an easy, easy knit with some very basic crochet added in and in a "regular" size it would be a fun and fast knit. I'm very glad I made it but I'm sticking to smaller projects for a while...

I took the tank outside to get a decent pic (it's hanging from my porch light in the "money shot" pic, heh) and Pumpkin was bereft that he couldn't join in the fun too!

what a sad, lonely face

But wait! there's more!

I finished my Vog On footies!


'Vog On socks by Aleta Fera for Knitty

2 skeins Crystal Palace Panda Cotton, colorway Blueberries and Grapes

Size US#1 (2.25) Knitpicks 32" circular needle, magic loop

Toe up using a Turkish Cast-On

Tubular bind-off

Mods: I made these more of a footie than the anklet the pattern suggests. I changed the eye of partridge heel to a yo short row heel and I eliminated the picot bind off as I didn't think FK Mom would appreciate it so much.

My love of Panda Cotton is well documented, especially this delicious colorway! These socks are so soft plus the pattern is super easy and so pretty. I think FK Mom will love them!

Now you'll note those socks are blue. Guess what color my new socks are? PINK, what else? Sheesh, maybe I do need to knit some brown socks to break this color rut I'm in! Here's the new socks on the block with some Knails thrown in for good measure...

Just a simple toe-up, magic loop, garter rib sock in some pretty Lorna's Laces, another birthday pressie, this time from Jessica. The juicy nails are OPI Brights Collection, Goldilocks Rocks! I went for extreme contrast vs. matching this time - isn't it pretty? :)

As your reward for reading ALL of this, you get a second P-Man pic - cause there's never enough P-Man, right?

The handsome boy makes everything he sits on look comfy, doesn't he?

Have a good week...I'll be back soon with my new WIP, weather/pic taking permitting!

OOPS!! One more thing...I added a new free pattern on my sidebar if you're interested. Just a simple wrister pattern written for koigu or any sock yarn, enjoy!