working my way back

Hi. :) Yes, I’m still out here in the world. Is anybody out there?

It’s been a challenging year… during part of which, my favorite yarn store closed. I really only knit on one thing this for most of the summer – black rainbow shawl (the stripe study shawl) and I only finished it this past week.

These photos are pre-block. But I really like how it came out. Not really stripey, which I really like. This shawl is for me. Maybe one day I’ll make another one.

FO: elemental hat II

There’s been a flurry of finishing here at saffronknits… here’s one!

I finished the elemental hat! It was a fun mindless knitting project.

The yarn went from the stripey-ness to more barberpole at the top. Next time I make yarn like this, I’ll work to keep the stripey-ness throughout the whole yarn.

I think I want to make another one! :)

can’t… stop… knitting…

There has been a major shift here at saffronknits. But, before I get to that, I want to you show the last yarn I finished.

I had 4 ounces of ‘Cotton Candy’ mini batts from Spincerely Yours

I chain-plied this yarn, being very conscious about the amount of twist I was putting into it and I am very pleased with the results. I’d say this is a pretty woolen yarn as I spun this with a supported long draw. I call it ‘Pink Parasol’. (Inspired by line in The Sound of Music).


But back to that ‘major shift’. After finishing that last yarn, my spinning mojo went on vacation but an obsession with knitting has taken it’s place. Want proof?

I bought that Dream in Color Smooshy – Visual Purple and made the ‘Simple Yet Effective Shawl‘.

I saw someone knitting an Ulmus shawl (designed by Through The Loops) at my LYS and went home and started one of my own. I’m using Claudia Handpainted Yarn fingering in the colorway ‘Carousel’ and Koigu Premium Merino in Black, both from my stash. I’m so glad to finally be using this yarn.

My issues with reading patterns reared it ugly head and I misread the chart so my Ulmus is more of a stockinette version. I really like it!

I’ve had to rip out about 16 rows to fix a mistake, but that hasn’t really slowed me down. I still love knitting this shawl.

And finally, a shawl made out of my own handspun. The very first time I’m knitting with my own handspun. I’m so in love with knitting this, I almost can’t stand it!

Once again, it’s the Simple Yet Effective Shawl. It’s completely in stockinette and I completely love it! (The picture shows the shawl upside down – The navy is the top of the shawl.)

I’m going to knit all of color blocks then add black at the bottom. I’m still deciding if I want the garter stitch edging to be in color or in black.

Ok … enough blogging … gotta get back to my knitting.

lot’s o’ knitting goin’ on

I finally finished this hat. It was sitting on the needles for way too long and last month, I finally sat down and finished it in one sitting.

Pattern: Gretel by Ysolda
Size: Regular (I did the slouchy last time)
Yarn: Kraemer Yarns Summit Hill in colorway Aquamarine, not a whole skein
Needles: US 7
Started: December 15 2008
Completed: May 17 2009

I love this pattern. Well worth knitting again. This will make a nice gift for a dear friend. It’s nice to have a Christmas gift done so early. :)

…aaand… this past weekend, I was knitting like a fiend and finished the heels on my Monkey-ish socks so I just need to do the legs and the cuffs. I don’t have a lot of knitting time during the week ’cause I usually only have enough mental power for spinning at the end of the day so this part might take a while, but I love knitting these socks – a combo of my creativity with that of the Cookie A. Lots ‘o fun, in my opinion. :) (The yarn is Dream in Color: Some Summer Sky … perfect for this time of year, wouldn’t you say? :D )

This is the Sherman short row heel, great for someone who doesn’t like to deal with wrapping stitches.

I decided not the carry the pattern all the way around the leg. I really like how it looks.

and I got a new knitting book!

and I know what I’m going to knit next … Oh… the anticipation. ;)

a gift for a friend

Remember this yarn? [Alpaca with a Twist Big Baby (Mountain)]

It became this:

The Delores Park Cowl. My first cowl ever! I now see why they’ve become so popular. Simple, fun and functional (and NOT a neverending scarf!). It was intended as a Christmas present but life being what it is and me being who I am, I didn’t get it in the mail until the last week of January. I loved working with this yarn.

What I remember most about knitting this was that I brought it with me to see a Broadway production of The Lion King. I’d never brought my knitting to something like that … but I hate crowds and I thought it would help. And it did. It was very basic knitting so I didn’t have to think a lot and it made waiting for the production to start and the intermission tolerable.

I’m happy to say that this gift was well received. I have been knitting for three years (in January) and this was the first Christmas where I managed to make gifts for people I wanted to. I love being able to make gifts for the people I care about ’cause I know what it feels like to received a hand made gift.

hats, yarn and fiber, oh my!

ok. I LOVE the first section of Knitting Workshop! It answered practically all the questions I had when I was a beginner knitter. … about joining in the round …. purling the ‘easy way’ … and knowing the difference between the ‘back’ & ‘front’ of a stitch.

and……. LOOK! at my ‘swatch cap’!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :D


Lion Brand Wool
Size 6 US needles. (DPNs & 16″ circular)
Cast on: 84 stitches, increased to 112
Gauge: ? (I haven’t measured yet)

I’m so proud of this! It fits!! It’s a little long, but I’ll roll up the ribbing and my ears will be warmer. This is the first hat I’ve made that fits me!

Oh! and the colorwork design is mine, all mine. :) After all, Elizabeth said ‘Don’t use mine. Make up your own’. So I did! :D

I was all fired up to make another. But the yarn is not co-operating. It’s Knit Picks Wools of the Andes. It is soft, but not as soft as the Lion Brand wool I was using. So, it’s going back into stash until it lets me know what it wants to be. In the meantime, I went to the Yarn Store today and look what followed me home so I can make more hats!


It’s all worsted weight yarn. The right three skeins are Cascade 220. I’ve never tried it before and I keep reading how much people enjoy using it so I wanted to try it.

The skein on the far left is dream in color. Does the colorway look familiar?
It’s the same colorway as the sock yarn I bought previously. I’d totally forgotten!! :roll:

And as promised, here’s some images of some of my favorite spinning fiber that I’ve purchased:

From CJKopecCreations:

Custom Blended Wool/Bamboo Roving – SECRETS

From AllSpunUp:

Both below are from Spincerely Yours:

Superwash Merino/Tencel Top – Sedna

Superwash Merino and Tencel in Freya



Hope to see ya soon! Happy knitting & spinning! :D

happy knitting!


I just pulled all my needles out of my beret. :( I’m three rows from being finished!!! Now I have to figure out where the beginning of the row is … if I can!! I so wanted to finish today. I most likely will … but I just needed to kvetch about it… :roll:

Thanks for listening!

ETA: I’m so disappointed! The hat is too small! and I have no idea what happened. I truly believe it’s knitter error, but I’m too bummed to investigate it now. I think it’s time to try another hat pattern. I’ll come back to this one later. I still intend this to be a present for someone. Good thing it’s intended for Christmas 2008

attention: knitting content ahead!

I’ve been looking at a lot of bloggers do retrospects about 2007. For me, I guess it would be that 2007 was my 2nd year of knitting (I learned to do cables and practiced double knitting). But the biggest surprise for me was the spinning. Never in a million years would I thought I would be creating my own yarn or fall in love with spinning fiber the way that I have. Nor would I have expected that spinning content would take over my blog, something that I have mixed feelings about. But it is what it is, right? And I’m having fun. :)

Ok… on with the knitting content! :D

I made dishcloths! I never thought I would do that either, but I needed something small and reasonably quick.

I bought two balls of Sugar’n Cream that I got for about $4 (3 oz each).




I searched around for a simple pattern but didn’t really find any I liked so I used a stitch pattern from a magazine and made up my own.



These took less than two days! and I had about 2 oz left of each ball so what’s a gal to do … but make more dishcloths. :)


Sometimes knitting feels like magic to me. I mean, we learn these two basic stitches and some how we come up with the heel of a sock.

I felt that magic again when I was working on the garterlac dishcloth. AND it’s ‘only’ the knit stitch!



Plus, I had no interesting in doing all that turning so I found this page about knitting (and purling) backwards.



Once again … the learning (and magic) continues. And entrelac just became a little bit less mysterious. :)

Happy New Year! :D


FO: Beret



Pattern: Periwinkle Beret by Grumperina
Yarn: Australian Merino Sport Weight Wool from Cabin Cove Mercantile
Colorway:Sunshine Sherbet
Needles: US size 2/US size 3 dpns (pattern called for size 1 & 2)
Completed: October 27, 2007
Notes:I wanna say that first of all that this was a fun knit. Pattern was easy to follow. (and that’s saying a lot considering how pattern challenged I can be). This is the 2nd hat pattern by Grumperina that I’ve done and each one was a joy. She even made trying a new cast-on a non-scary experience. The tubular cast-on was cool to do and very stretchy.

The yarn is reused from another hat I did and I like this one so much better. This yarn was the first purchase I ever made from Cabin Cove Mercantile and that makes it extra special to me. I think it was among the first batch of yarns Dave ever sold online. I had never used wool and never bought yarn online. Classic Cabin Cove is how I like to think about this yarn. I think the coloring works well with the pattern… the spiraling is pretty.

I have no idea who this hat is for. This project was all about the experience of knitting. I have no doubt that I will probably make another.

Keep on knitting!


Hello, again … Hello!

There has been knitting goin’ on around here and it’s time for me to catch you up. First up: Finished Objects (yes… that means more than one! :D )

Finished Objects

BBE Socks



Yarn: Apple Laine Apple Pie
Colorway: Royal Blue
Needles: US size 3
Pattern: Basket Weave (6-stitch) from More Sensational Knitted Socks
Notes:I didn’t finish these in time to give them to the intended recipient…which I why I still have them. But I like them. The yarn is really soft.


Needles: US size 4 & 6
Yarn: Rowan RYC Cashsoft DK (1 ball)
Pattern: Odessa by Grumperina
Notes: It only took me a week and a half to knit this. But it is too small. But that’s ok ’cause it’s basically my swatch. The gauge was given in pattern and I figured, if I’m gonna knit 4 inches in pattern, I may as well knit the hat. (I bought two balls of this yarn just for something like this.) But I really liked this pattern. Very easy to follow and a quick knit. Now I need to buy size 5 & 7 needles so I can make this hat in the correct size.

Next up: Works in progress… stay tuned! :)

i’m all about the spinning…

(warning: picture heavy post)

At least this past week has been about the spinning…mostly.

First of all, I changed my banner at the top of this page from ‘and crochets too’ to ‘and spins too’. I can already tell that I’m going to spin more than I will crochet so I wanted it to reflect that.

Secondly, I joined the Hello Yarn Fiber Club! (see the lovely button in my sidebar?) I’ve been wanting to join a club but sock yarn clubs are so expensive. I wasn’t able to join the first round of this club, but I’ve been keeping watch for the next one so when it was time to join, I hopped on board! :D This should prove fun and challenging.

Thirdly, unless Dave updates the mercantile, I won’t be buying yarn for a while. But in this declaration, I unwittingly did not include rovings … which is good, ’cause I just bought this (flikr link). How could I resist a roving that’s almost exactly what I was looking for and named for one of my ABSOLUTE favorite pieces?!? As it seemed to have been made specifically for me, I couldn’t. :D This will be fun to play with … but it’s not my next spinning project. For that… you’ll have to stay tuned. ;)

And lastly…I finished spinning the ‘I Want Candy’ roving!! YAY! Here are pictures of the progression:

The Roving:
‘I Want Candy’ , 4 oz Merino wool hand painted by MadelineTosh











Presenting ‘Candy Shop Explosion’
70 yards of thick/thin, mostly bulky, 4 oz. Merino handspun

This was an interesting process. I can’t say that I love this yarn nor can I say I hate it. What I can say is that I’m proud of it and I do plan to use it.

I will have news on my Sockapalooza socks soon…

Thanks for stopping by!!


FO, WIPs, and Yarn, oh my…

Very Special Socks:
(sorry, they haven’t been blocked or anything yet)

Very Special Socks

Yarn: Paton’s Classic Wool
Pattern: My own basic pattern

Amethyst Socks (for the Cabin Cove KAL)


Yarn: Amethyst colourway from Cabin Cove Mercantile
Stitch Pattern: Woven Stitch from ‘Sensational Knitted Socks’

Easter Egg Hat


Yarn: Wool of the Andes worsted weight from Knit Picks
Pattern: My own, top-down

and I bought the yarn for my Sockapalooza 4 pal. It’s Claudia Hand Painted Yarn/Colourway: Carousel. I love it!!






Enjoy the rest of your weekend! :)

update … (sorry, no pictures yet)

First I want to say ‘thank you’ for all the nice comments on my last post. :)

Ok… on with the update:

  1. I finished the Very Special Socks! I called the recipient to let her know they were finished. She said “Great! Just in time for summer!” .. *rolls eyes* .. Everyone’s a comedian these days.
  2. I got my match for Sockapalooza 4! I just ordered the yarn and I believe I found a pattern! :)
  3. I’m once again working on the heel of my Amethyst socks. Size 2 needles are small, did you know that? ;) I can’t imagine using size 1 & 0 …

I guess that it for now. Hopefully I’ll have pictures to share next time!

TGIF! (I know it’s Thursday… but a gal can dream, can’t she?)

Finished Object – Heart Scarf

I don’t have a lot to say today… so here are some pictures of my finished heart scarf. It still need blocking, but I managed to make it look ok for pictures. I love blue and I love hearts.:)

edited to add some details:
Yarn: Handspun, 6-7 WPI (I’m not sure of yardage)
Pattern: Heart Scarf from Fall 2004 Knitty Surprise
Needles: Size 15
Other: It took about a week for me to finish this project. :)




and this is what’s left … more than I expected … hmmm what to do, what to do?


So long, farewell! :)

I changed my mind…

I cast on for the fingerless mittens, but it didn’t feel right. I wanted to knit, but not those … so I ripped ‘em out and I’m back to not knowing what to knit for the Cabin Cove Yarn KAL. *sigh*

On a positive note, I did finished my toe-up socks but was struck by a moment of perfectionism and was disappointed by the cast off, which was stretchy but still too tight in my opinion. Realistically, I knew these socks would not be perfect, and I’ve been telling myself that all along … but I guess there was still a part of me that wanted them to be. :( I will have pictures at some point.

I’ve been working on my little crochet baby sweater ’cause I just want it to be finished and I don’t like having an unfinished project around for so long so hopefully, I’ll have a finished photo of that soon. and honestly? I’d rather be knitting.

The ‘neverending scarf’ is now about 30 inches long. Things are moving much faster now that I understand ‘how’ I knit. Part of the scarf does have twisted stitches, but unless you look close, you can’t really tell.

I guess that’s it for now. Have a good week!!!

FO and a heel

You might think FO might be something to say to the snow drift that surrounded my car this morning but no, it’s an actual Finished Object. I finished it over the weekend and finally got a semi-decent photo of them today:

Fingerless Mittens

Started: February 3, 2007
Finished: February 8, 2007
Pattern: Fingerless Mittens – Actually, since this is the first time making these, I looked at several patterns to try and get a general feel on how to make them then I kinda winged it. I tried to add a small eyelet on the back of the hand, but it’s lost in the yarn.
Yarn: 1 skein Lion Brand Wool-Ease Forest Green Heather
Needles: US size 6 DPNs

This is what I hope to make for my Cabin Cove Yarn-along. They were easier to make than I thought. (What the heck is a gusset, anyway? <–rhetorical question)As much as I want to try a stitch pattern or design element, I really want the colors of yarn the be the focus so I’ll probably save that idea for another time.

I just finished the second heel on my toe-up socks. I do like the Sherman Heel and with some well placed markers, this go round was a little easier. But I ended up with a similar problem as last time with one side being pretty and nice and the other not so pretty and not so nice. I figured out too late that it must be the way I pick up the stitches on the encroachments – I think I’m doing it the same on both sides, but apparently not. I know what to work on next time. I’m so pleased to be finished with the heels … now it’s stockinette then rib and I’ll be finished with my first toe-ups. Is it weird to say that I’m more than a little proud of myself? Well … I am.

Thanks for stopping by. Enjoy the rest of your day!

p.s. Happy Single Awareness Day!