My 2020 Advent Calendar

I have completely unboxed my 2020 Advent calendar from A Girl and Her Wool. I ended up with the quite the collection of minis!

I have hemmed and hawed over what to do with these. I did some pattern searching and pulled down some possibilities. I had been leaning toward a cowl of some sort because the minis are all 10 grams I need something small-ish so that I can see good sized blocks of the different colors.

But then I threw that all out the window and I decided to make my own “advent” socks. I am going to use the full skein to make the heels toes and cuffs. And for each mini I will split in half and knit concurrent socks on two different needles. I think I won’t attempt any color management and will just use them in the order the dyer presented them.

And to keep myself motivated I am going to make myself finish my Carbon Sprinkles Vanilla Socks before letting myself cast on this new project.

Blanket Dreaming

The other thing that jumped into my cart on black friday from Knit Picks was a blanket quantity of Knit Picks in Garnet Heather.

I am dreaming of a smooshy and soft throw for myself. This yarn is 50/50 acrylic and wool but it’s two ply structure and loosely spun nature just makes it so smooth and soft. Even Jellybean petted it and commented on how soft it is.

This will have to wait until after Christmas, but I’m excited about it!

Merry Christmas and Happy Knitting to all!

Coordinating Felici

I fell down on black friday on the knit picks website. I needed two skeins of Knit Picks Biggo to finish my Peace Blanket and some how a bunch of other yarn jumped in my cart. I managed to snag coordinating sets of Felici. I got Felici Worsted and Felici Sock in the Goth Kitty and Punch Bug.

I am envisioning matching hat and sock sets. How cute would those be for future gifts? And if I get the sock yarn cranked into sock tubes they would be really quick (relatively speaking) gifts. At least that sounds like a good idea, lol.

Happy Knitting

Tossing The Stash

I recently signed up for the Yarn Harlot’s patreon and I have been watching her videos. The most recent one was a tour of her stash and how to best care for your yarn. One of the items she recommended was to do a “toss” off the stash a couple of times of year to look for pests and to reacquaint yourself with what you have.

I got a wild hair this past weekend and pulled out every skein of yarn I own. Warning….yarn content ahead. Avert you gaze if chaos and piles of yarn will offend your sensibilities.

Okay, I warned you. The below photo is the entirety of my stash. I very carefully emptied every tub and examined every bag. I found a single spider but other than that my yarn appears to be clean and pest free. And then I had to put it all back….

I carefully curated each yarn category and repacked into clean bags. For instance my sock yarn and lace yarn is below. Starting at the bottom left working clockwise I have a large pile of variegated yarn, then above that is my self-striping, then sock blanks and sock tubes, followed by lace mohair or suri alpaca, below that is sock sets, then a small pile speckled yarn and lastly in the bottom right corner are my solid and tonals.

I packed each kind of yarn together and but into drawers. And then for the first time I affixed labels to each drawer so that I know where to look for various items.

Some of my categories were by weight, fiber content or sometimes by manufacturer. It may not make sense for everyone else, but I think it’s going to work for me.

What did I learn from this? I have WAY too much variegated sock yarn, less self-striping sock yarn than I would have guessed, very few sweater quantities and almost no worsted weight yarn whatsoever. I’m hoping this review will help me make more productive purchases in the future. But who knows….sometimes a knitter never learns, lol!

Happy Knitting

Oh Snap…..Gingersnap

Happy Mother’s Day to me!! I sent my hubby a wish list this year and he came through big time! He picked some goodies from Gingersnap of Canadian fame.

He picked the PERFECT bag and a unique sock set. They aren’t colors I would have picked but they are kind of stunning. The hubby swears like a sailor and I will think of him everytime I use the bag, lol.

The yarn is their Zest Fingering in the Penguin Plunge color with the bright yellow contrast color. I’m thinking socks with contrast toes, heels and cuffs? Maybe a cowl….I think this needs to marinate for a bit.

What will not marinate is this project bag. It features nice long handles and a wire framed opening. I really need cast on a new project to christen this project bag. So many ideas!!

Happy Knitting!!

Yarn Mystery Box

I have been listening to the Nomad Yarns podcast for a couple of years now. It is a married couple who ran a yarn shop turned into yarn truck as well as dye independent label yarn. They have small children and pretty much speak my life. In this time of cancelled events and social distancing they advertised mystery boxes. You pick your price level and give them some suggestions of colors, weights of yarn, etc and they put together a surprise.

You guys….this was so worth it! It was a happy mail day indeed. My box was bursting at the seams and full of goodies!

I received two skeins of West Yorkshire Spinners Aire Valley DK in a nice blue, a skein of Nomad Yarn Twisted Branch sock yarn, a custom needle gauge, two mini skeins of Nomad Yarns Pallete, a set of Carbonyz Size 2 double pointed needles, a set of Knitters Pride stitch markers, and some waste yarn.

I loved everything in my box and it was neat to not know what I was getting. I have zero idea what to do with any of this and my stash is already at SABLE but this was a good investment. I supported a small business and I got to have the joy of new to me goodies.

Would you every order a mystery box?

Stashing Down Scraps

I am still riding the wave of accomplishment from finishing my scrappy DK Hibernation Throw last week. I was cleaning up the project bag it had been living in to put the needles and notions away and noticed how small the pile of scraps were at the bottom of the bag. When I started I had two gallon sized ziplock bags full of scraps and a CONE of undyed sock yarn. Now I’m left with two quart sized bags and one sandwich sized bag of scraps that don’t have a plan.

Now, full disclosures these are not all my scraps or mini skeins. I still have my mitred square memory blanket going. I “tossed the stash” so to speak and aired out that bag to make sure all my yarn was in good order. It’s safe to say I I have plenty to work with, lol.

I’m just the kind of knitter that gets a thrill from using up as much of every skein of yarn I possibly can. I like the idea of scrappy projects where I can remember all the cool things I made with the full skein. Its akin to checking completed items off a list for me.

I’m curious, are most knitters this way? Do you keep your scraps?

A Purple Present

I have been mum about this but I recently received a promotion at my job. It’s been in the works for a couple of months and I didn’t want to count my chickens until they hatched but its official now. I went from a staff level accounting to a manager of accounting operations. I have four direct reports and new boss who is….challenging…to say the least. It’s been a ton of work and I have a lot to learn. But I’m excited to have gotten this opportunity. I’m 35 years old and this is my first promotion ever.

My husband decided to get me a little congratulatory gift. He asked for yarn suggestions and I said anything from KnitCircus. So he and Jellybean made an order. And shocker, since Jellybean helped its ALL PURPLES. That is Jellybean’s go to color. I don’t mind because they made beautiful choices.

The top skein is a Trampoline base in the Dream a Little Dream colorway. It’s 440 yards of a light fingering weight and the same kind of yarn I made my Sherwood Forest Wrap with. The bottom two skeins are the Greatest of Ease base in two matching 25 gram gradient sock skeins in the Knit Sky colorway.

My favorite part of these yarns? They are already wound up and ready to use! I like when that less than fun part is done for me. KnitCircus may be in my top five favorite dyers. Do you have a favorite dyer?

Teal Torch Knits 12 Days of Christmas

Man….January is getting away from me!  I opened a box on my office desk at home and saw the beauty that was my Teal Torch Knits 12 days of Christmas advent. I haven’t been able to put it away since opening the last box because I just love it so much!

This was my second “advent” calendar of 12 minis. I didn’t have the budget on hand this summer to buy a full 24 skein advent from any one dyer but I did manager to sleuth out two 12 skeins advents for less than price of a full one. And boy did this one not disappoint!I keep smelling the soak and having to hid the stitch marker from my children.

Teal Torch Knits dyed their 12 day advent to be a rainbow. And not just any rainbow but a rainbow with speckles!! I have zero ideas what to knit with this one. Someone recommended the Fuss Free Festival Shawl by Louise Tillbrook. But I think I need more time to marinate on this choice.

Any good pattern suggestions from out there in blog land?

Cornbread and Honey Advent Box

Merry Christmas Eve to all!! I finally jumped on the advent mini train this holiday season. I couldn’t fit a full 24 day advent into my yarn budget this summer but I did find two indie dyers who were doing “12 Days of Christmas” boxes for a much more affordable option. So I got two 12s to add up to 24.

Here is my first box from Cornbread and Honey. They box was a little worse for the wear by USPS but it was intact and on time.

Inside was a cute little project bag, 12 mystery bags and some delicious extra goodies. I did pick out a project to fit these little bundles. I purchased Annapurna by Aspen Knits because its a cute stole/wrap/scarf that was specifically designed for these minis.

I started opening these up on December 1st through the 12th but in the chaos and spirit of December I forgot to show you the yarn! Between stomach viruses and work drama I didn’t find the joy and the energy to start my advent project.  This yarn was so pretty I wanted to knit only good vibes into it so I chose to wait until it felt right. Right now it’s Christmas Eve day and I need to get my butt moving on some cooking and wine drinking!

P.S. I’m still can’t wait to cast on my special Christmas Eve cast on! It’s waiting under the tree for me with my warm snuggly PJs.

Happy Knitting!!