Howdy, knitting friends! Welcome to another edition of the Knitting Daddy blog. A few weeks ago, I attended a great fiber festival practically in my own back yard: the Carolina FiberFest. I’ve got some pictures and my thoughts of the festival towards the end of the post, but let’s first take a look at what’s been going on in my fiber world recently.
Recently In Podcasting
I continue to keep my earbuds filled with wonderful knitting-related podcasts. There are lots of great shows out there, and I love being able to keep up with what my fellow podcasters are up to by listening to their podcasts. My friend Joey and I are still having a great time producing our own podcast: Unraveling with Greg and Joey. Tune in to our latest episode (Episode 11: Asymptotes, Clapping Music, and Drunken Knitting) to find out how you can win a copy of Modern Lopi: One by Lars Rains. Listen to the podcast and check out our Ravelry group for details. (Thanks to KnitVentures and Lars Rains for the review copies and prize.)
Recently On My Needles
I’ve been knitting on a few things since the last time I updated the blog. I try to keep my Ravelry Project Pages up to date, so you can always keep up with my latest projects there. Let’s take a quick look at some of the things that have recently been keeping my needles clicking.
For a recent mini-swap on the Itty Bitty Knits Ravelry group, I designed a little frog ornament.
My swap partner was a “Muppets” fan, so I couldn’t resist giving a go at creating an ornament inspired by one of the most recognizable Muppets out there. I’m really happy with how it came out. It was a lot of fun, and it helped give me some ideas for designing some stuffies of my own. We’ll see. 🙂
Ravelry Project Page: 2016 IBK Ornament Swap #1 – Our Favorite Things
Pattern: I made it up as I went along
Yarn Used: Some green and white and black yarn I had lying around
Cozie Owl Coffee
For my wife’s birthday, I knitted her a coffee cup cozie.
This is a pattern she added to my queue one day when I told her to browse through Ravelry and add projects to my queue that she’d like me to knit for her. It was a lot of fun to knit, and knitted up pretty quickly with yarn I found in my stash. I found some sew-on googly eyes on amazon that made it great to be able to attach the eyes without fear of them falling off.
I finished both pair of Christmas socks I was working on!
It was really exciting to get those off the needles. Now I have 3 pair of socks specifically designated for wearing during the Christmas season. I’m definitely looking forward to when Christmastime rolls around this year, and I can start sporting my fancy hand-made Christmas socks.
Ravelry Project Page: Checked and Square Socks, Top Down
Pattern: Checked and Square Socks, Top Down by Lara Neel
Yarn Used: Sea Star Handpaints Bare Foot in the Christmas Island colorway and Zwerger Garn Opal Uni Solid 4 ply in the 3081 Natural colorway.
Ravelry Project Page: Dyad Socks, Top Down
Pattern: Dyad Socks, Top Down by Lara Neel
Yarn used: Julianna’s Lucky Star Sock in the Garland colorway and Zwerger Garn Opal Uni Solid 4 ply in the 3081 Natural colorway.
Fireflies Rising Shawlette
I finished my Fireflies Rising Shawlette, too.
I finished it just in time for Easter, and I wore it while playing my trumpet for the Easter sunrise service. I thought that was especially appropriate since, when she helped me block it, Blueberry noted that it looked like sunshine.
I haven’t decided who this is going to be for, yet, but I’m kinda thinking that Blueberry’s going to end up with it because she really likes it.
Blue Box Exploding Socks
After finishing my Christmas socks, I immediately cast on another pair of socks.
These socks are so much fun, for a lot of reasons! First, it’s another pattern out of Lara Neel’s Sock Architecture book. I am determined to work through every pattern in this book, and I’m having a blast doing it. I am modifying the pattern, which another reason these socks are so much fun — instead of doing the heel called for in the pattern, I’m using the Fish Lips Kiss Heel by Sox Therapist. I’m a little more than halfway down the leg of the 2nd sock, so I’ve already done the heel once, and I absolutely love it. It feels like it’s giving my heel a little hug when I put the sock on. I am definitely looking forward to doing it again, and I’ll probably use this heel a lot in future socks. The last aspect of these socks that is making it so much fun to knit is the yarn — it is bright, vibrant yarn from Nerd Girl Yarns that is inspired by Doctor Who. It’s absolutely wonderful. I am looking forward to getting these socks off my needles and putting them into my everyday wear rotation.
Ravelry Project Page: Blue Box Exploding Socks
Pattern: Strie Socks, Top Down by Lara Neel (incorporating Fish Lips Kiss Heel by Sox Therapist)
Yarn Used: Nerd Girl Yarns Bounce & Stomp in Blue box exploding
Scrappy Sock Yarn Blanket
I’ve picked up my Scrappy Sock Yarn Blanket again and added a handful of new squares to it.
I love working on this blanket because each square knits up quickly, and (since my blanket is still pretty small) it’s a very portable thing to knit on. I’ve got a bag full of yarn scraps that are destined to be incorporated in the blanket, including a handful of mini-skeins that I’ve received in swaps, and I’m looking forward to working that stash down a bit.
Beekeeper’s Quilt (Hexipuffs)
Hand-in-hand with my scrappy sock yarn blanket is hexipuff knitting.
While my scrappy sock yarn blanket is my primary project for sock yarn scraps and mini-skeins, if I have enough yarn left over after adding a mitered square to the blanket, I’ll use it to knit a hexipuff for my Beekeeper’s Quilt. Both of these are very long-term projects, but each individual addition is a quick knit. So I add a few more hexipuffs to my pile. Eventually, I’ll have hundreds of them. When I do, I’ll sew them all together to make a quilt.
The Carolina FiberFest was held at the state fairgrounds in Raleigh, NC on March 25 and 26. That was Easter weekend, so I was only able to go for a few hours on Friday. The Carolina FiberFest was celebrating their tenth year, and I was excited to be able to attend. On Friday morning, I got up early and headed out to Raleigh. Once I got to the fairgrounds, I realized I made a mistake — I thought things opened in the morning, but they didn’t open until 1pm on Friday. Oops! Once things opened up, I headed in and started taking it all in. It really was neat to see so many fiber-related business gathered under one roof. In addition to yarn vendors, there were spinning demonstrations and a lot of fleeces set out for display. I walked around the entire event a few times just to get my bearings on what was there. The yarn fumes were intoxicating! There were a lot of workshops available, but since I knew my time was going to be limited, I didn’t sign up for any of them. In the future (especially if it’s not on Easter weekend), I’ll probably look into taking a workshop or two.
I didn’t have anything in particular I was shopping for, but I couldn’t resist picking up a handful of things.
I spent some time talking with the nice folks at Barn to Yarn, who raise alpacas. I picked up a skein of their yarn: alpaca, silk, wool, and angora. I’m pretty sure it’s going to turn into a hat.
I found a great booth with some fun yarn: HauteKnitYarn.
All of their colors were really fun, and I picked up some yarn from them is probably destined to become socks for my mom.
I also found the Twist Fiber Studio booth, where I picked up a sock blank.
These are going to be socks for me. 🙂
Blueberry’s a big fan of penguins, so when I saw a felted penguin, I pretty much had to get it.
It’s hard to have too many project bags, so when I saw this comic book project bag from Cedar Hill Farm Company, it wasn’t long before I purchased it.
I’m always thrilled when I find project bags that aren’t overly feminine. I’m not on a quest for “manly” project bags, but I’m just not filling my selves with project bags made out of beautiful flowery fabric. Nerdy fabric is great, and I sure do love my comic books. I absolutely adore this bag.
Door Prize: Fiber For Spinning
Just as I was leaving the fairgrounds, I got a phone call letting me know that I won a door prize! It turned out to be a basket full of fiber, plus a drop spindle.
You can see my whole haul, including my door prize, in the picture above. This fiber is really nice, and I’m looking forward to getting my drop spindle back out and working with it some more.
I had a great time at the fiber fest, and I wish I was able to spend more time looking at all the booths and taking workshops. I’m already looking forward to returning next year. Maybe I’ll remember to take a picture of the whole event next time. 😉
Where I’ll Be Next
Over the next couple of months, I’ve got a few knitting-related travels planned. First, in May, I’ll be attending a couple of Susan B. Anderson workshops at the Fibre Space in Alexandria, VA. I’m signed up for the shawl design and egg to owl classes. If you’re planning on being at the workshops, please say “hi.” In June, I’m planning on attending the TNNA Summer Show in Washington, DC. This is the industry trade show for professionals in the fiber-related industry. This will be my first time attending TNNA, and I’m really looking forward to it. Everyone I know who has attended in the past tells me about how exiting it is. If you’re going to be at the show, let me know and we’ll figure out how to catch up with each other.
Until next time, keep on knitting for the ones you love!