May Stitches

May Stitches

May stitching brings the completion of five months of my daily stitching routine and to say that this has changed my life is an understatement! It has become the best part of my day, the thing I look most forward to, and I am still amazed at how this has sparked my creativity.

And, I really love that I can look at each day’s stitching and remember the inspiration.

The collage:

And, May complete – pale, lighter, awakening. All the good things that May brings!

June is off to an interesting start as well. I felt I was getting too comfortable in working circularly from the center out, so I am changing things up to a more linear approach this month. I love how uncomfortable it feels right now. That is a sure sign of good things!

Product Review: Javori Designs

Product Review: Javori Designs

In March, I was asked to review one of Javori Designs beaded knitting kits. I selected the Chelsea Necklace Kit as I have not knit much jewelry – and in fact, the only knitted jewelry I had made thus far was with wire.

The kit comes with everything you need – sparkly yarn, beads, bead threader, a ring (on which you cast on) and the clasp.

The directions were very clear, however, the Andi Javori has a wonderful tutorial on YouTube that made the clear directions clearer if you are, like me, a visual learner.

You thread on the prescribed number of beads before you begin and then you cast on. Can I just say BRAVO for this bead threader? It is really a wonder – sort of like a big-eyed needle! I loved how easy it made threading the beads on the yarn!

The cast on felt a bit fiddly and awkward, but you only cast on four stitches. The most difficult part of the knitting was counting rows – really. Casting on side two was much easier, and I had this cute necklace knit in about 3 hours – that includes the tassel and adding the beads to the tassel. So, this is a very quick project!

I am not sure I am supposed to tell you these parts, but obviously, the yarn is not my usual wooly want to stick to itself yarn and weaving in the ends worried me. I did not think they would stay – so I did the same wraps that I did to attach the tassel at the base of the ring. I simply wrapped the yarn tail around my knitting just below where I attached the clasps. I then used a crochet hook to pull the tail through and pull it tight. I made sure the yarn came through the back of the knitting so it is hidden in the necklace.

I did surgeons knots with the cast on tails on the wrong side and snipped them off. As you can see, I even had left-over yarn and beads – so I probably could have made it a little bit longer and there are enough beads that I could have added a row of beads to each beaded section.

I really like how it turned out! (And, I hope my sister will too – because it is heading off to her for her birthday!)

Andi Javori can be found on Instagram, Facebook, Ravelry, and Pinterest.

She has a wide variety of kits available on her website and she is graciously offering my readers a free pattern as well as a 15% discount on your entire online purchase from her website. Please use the code: KATKNITS before April 30, 2017.

If you decide to knit a Chelsea Necklace, please let me know! I would love to hear your thoughts and see your finished project!

Bits of Knitting and Reading

Bits of Knitting and Reading

Knitting and reading have been in a bit of a holding pattern.

I am almost done with A Rule Against Murder with Inspector Gamache. I should have it finished later today.

Up next is this gem from the library. I simply loved Norwegian by Night and I hope I love The Girl in Green as well.

I keep thinking I just have a few more inches to go, but I don’t seem to be getting there. After yesterday’s internal debate about ripping back, the ‘make it perfect’ voice inside me won out, I ripped back and added in the shaping…but!!! This allowed me to try the sweater on again and yep, I now have about 3 inches to go before I have some additional short row shaping and then the ribbing. So, the body is soooo close to being done! I am actually looking forward to getting to Sleeve Island!! Good thing there is a new season of The Bridge available.

Happy Wednesday!

Get your woolies out Wednesday!

Get your woolies out Wednesday!

Mother Nature has reminded me that we still have winter, despite her tempting us with spring. (although we only got two-ish inches of snow here in my neighborhood, the temperature this morning is bitterly cold! You know – so cold we have a bit of a Pug Strike going on here!)

Thus, sweater knitting has resumed. I had to frog back a bit though, there are these increases/decreases at each side to give the sweater some interest, however, my angle was getting too far over. So I ripped back a bit and am now back on track but without those increases or decreases. I will knit another couple of inches and see how I like that.

Along with listening to Moby Dick. I am not quite half way through, but I confess I am loving the Big Read – hearing each chapter read by a different reader is excellent! I am finding it easy to resume after getting sidetracked by Overdrive titles that have a due date!

Also, a couple of weeks ago, I finished this wonderful hat from Drop Dead Easy Knits – silly me for thinking it would not get much use until next winter! It is getting a work out this week for sure!

Don’t forget March Madness over at MDK today! VOTING has begun!!

Joining Ginny’s Yarn Along where the knitting and reading are always so good.

Finally, one last reminder that my daughter is a reader and she is raising a reader! You can help her Usborne Book Party today here and thank you in advance!!

What are you knitting in this crazy weather!

Sock Along

Sock Along

It is all sock knitting here. Mystery Socks – one done, one to be finished.

Handspun Montadale Plain Vanilla Socks – in process

Birthday Helical Stripe Socks – in process

At least sock knitting is portable!

Actual reading has stalled, but audio books have been getting a good work out. I finished Orwell’s 1984 yesterday. I gave it 5 stars – I really loved this book. How spooky or perhaps eerie in how relevant it is to what is currently going on is crazy. If you have not read it – you should. It is brilliant writing.

I began listening to Orwell’s Animal Farm – this is a “re-read” for me, however, I read this book over 35 years ago, and felt a refresher was in order. The same company published this audiobook, and I am thrilled because the narration is stellar.

Oh, and I started reading The Zookeeper’s Wife last night. It is too soon to have any thoughts on the book as of yet.

As always, joining with Ginny’s Yarn Along – what are you reading this week?

Slow Sock Wednesday

Slow Sock Wednesday

The final clue for Kirsten Kapur’s Mystery socks is out today, however, as you can see – I am not even half way done with clue three.

Somewhere over the past couple of weeks my knitting mojo has up and left – I am just not feeling the knitting love right now. I know, it is a troubling thing! Perhaps today’s weather can help me get back on track – it is a windy, rainy, blustery day here – so maybe I can get these socks back on track today.

I am happy to say the that my reading has not done the same though. I started reading Fredrik Backman’s latest little book – And Every Morning The Way Home Gets Longer and Longer. It should be a quick read and perhaps I can even have it finished today!

In my ears I am listening to Orwell’s 1984…I somehow did not read this in high school, although I read Animal Farm. I just started yesterday and so far, I am enjoying it!

Joining Ginny’s Yarn Along, where there is lots of knitting and reading going on!

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