August 14, 2009

Boiling Over

Gah! My life and my knitting have gotten totally out of control. I realize I never even finished my Sock Summit recapping and when I went to take some more photos I realized I never photographed things I brought home from camp! In addition to that I've lost my mind and am knitting on a bazillion projects at once right now. Or so it feels. I keep trying to remind myself of that FLYlady slogan , "You are not behind – you are just getting started." Am I ever!

Buttons from Jennie the Potter. They match my Miss Babs Sport perfectly!

Kimmet Croft Fairy Hare purchased at camp. It's 40% angora. Can you see the dreamy fuzziness? I think this might become a Featherweight Cardigan.

There was a free skein of Fat Fairy Hare with purchase!

Sensing a color trend yet?

Kim was destashing this beautiful Silky Merino Aran from Sundara in Green Tea. Current thought, February Lady Sweater. (She's posted some of her photos from camp. Man, we were silly this year.)

Did I mention that I finally steeked one sleeve for the GLMC while at camp?

Sadly, it hasn't been touched since.

I knit this one baby hat on the way to camp.

I started a second on my way home and--this part is going to start sounding familiar--I haven't touched it since.

I've been knitting a lot on Coraline.

The Cascade Pure Alpaca is dreammmmmy. But the sleeves on my sweater are giving me fits. The first go had to be ripped because it was crazy-huge. My gauge on double-points was so loose and floppy. I ripped it out and switched to magic loop on a smaller size needle and the sleeves still seem kind of huge to me. Do I rip again? I'm thinking maybe I'll cut off the bottom of the sleeve and work it into a slimmer fit.

And did you see Damson? Ysolda is releasing Whimsical Little Knits 2 one pattern at a time. The first is a dainty little shawl. I couldn't resist and cast on immediately with some sock yarn I got from Butternut Woolens a year or so ago at Madrona. It's indigo-dyed and gorgeous. It also bleeds like you wouldn't believe and turns my hands completely blue!

One last thing, since I have a photo. This is my sample swatch from my sock design class at Sock Summit. The yarn is Socks That Rock in a Rare Gems colorway. I was having a very difficult time finding a stitch that worked with this yarn. Lace didn't show, texture didn't show. Then I found this pattern in a stitch guide shown to me by Ellen and it was perfect!

I better go get some knitting done.

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July 26, 2009

Knitting Camp Recap

Wednesday: Due to air travel nightmares I've missed the opening night dinner for two years straight. This year I wised up an traveled a day early. Kim generously offered to pick me up at the airport and put me up for the night. It was fun to meet her family after hearing so much about them.

Thursday: We had a leisurely morning then drove to Marshfield in the afternoon. We checked into our room then had a few hours to kill before the welcome dinner. We realized we hadn't eaten any lunch so we decided to go to the microbrewery next door and get our favorite food--fried pickles with mustard sauce. Do not wrinkle your nose at a fried pickle. They are truly a delicious, decadent treat. We may have also eaten an enormous plate of nachos. Then, with very full stomachs, we trundled back to the hotel.

Coming into the dining room is a true summer camp moment. You start to scan the tables looking for friendly faces, trying to find a seat. We were to full to eat the dinner but I had to get a shot of the NEON sherbet that was for dessert. Bright!

After dinner we were let into the classroom, complete with yarn shop. We picked out our seats, looked around, sat and knit. Kim and I were roommates for the first time this year. We're both nightowls and were the very last ones to leave the classroom every night.

Here are a few brief video tours of all the knitting in the classroom.

Friday: Class with Meg began. Camp 2 has no set agenda. We submit questions or ask them on the fly. The conversation ranges from cast ons to twisted stitches to steeks to pockets to colorwork to just about anything. We break for lunch then do Show & Tell. I brought my Pi shawl since it's an EZ project knit in yarn bought at camp last year. I thought of it as kind of a nothing project but the campers all really liked it which was very gratifying. I think I helped sell a lot of Fairy Hare on market day.I also brought my Granny Smith cardigan. Then Kim yelled out to me to show off my Ravelympic sweater. (I was a bit flustered and confused at this point. I was wearing my Ravelympic sweater when I got up to do Show & Tell then changed into the Granny Smith so when she said to talk about the Ravelympic one I started talking about it as if I was wearing it. Everyone found this *very* funny. Especially Kim, who declared it her favorite moment from camp.)

Here's the Ravelympic sweater next to the inspiration sweater by EZ.

Meg and Amy Detjen demonstrated "four-handed knitting" in which two people work on alternating rounds of knitting simultaneously.

Saturday: More class, more Show & Tell then Market. Kimmet Croft was there and I got to show my shawl off to Jan Becker, the owner. Jennie the Potter was not only at the market, she was a camper. I sat across the table from her and got to know her a bit during camp. I love her work but decided that I would save any heavy pottery purchases for the Sock Summit marketplace, where she will be a vendor. But I couldn't resist getting one of her pendant necklaces. I also got some more Fairy Hare but don't have a photo yet.

Vicki came to visit Ann at camp so we all got to have dinner together. She was my swap partner about a million years ago and I've read her blog ever since. It was so nice to meet her in person. And Ann. I felt like I'd known her forever. We have the same sense of humor and both curse like sailors. Spending time with her was like a little visit home to New York.

Sunday: More class, more Show & Tell. Kim and I kept getting into trouble for giggling during class. We seem to reach a point at camp where we are just giddy schoolgirls looking for any excuse to burst out laughing. There were several points when we literally fell on the floor laughing. One moment was when I came out of the bathroom and reported that, on looking at myself in the mirror, thought, "Wow, how did I get that huge whisker?" I leaned in for a closer look and realized that it was just yarn stuck to my face.

Monday: We had a goodbye breakfast. I had a late flight so we took our time and were some of the last people to leave. We headed back to Wausau, visited with Kim's kids a bit and went out to lunch. I got the most insane burger in the world.

That's fried onions and fried cheese curds on that burger. Delicious.

And then I got dropped off at the airport and went home to my real life. Sigh. I miss camp. Luckily I'll get to see several campers and Meg and Amy Detjen in two weeks at the Sock Summit. I can't wait.


July 25, 2009

Self-Portaits Are My Weakness

This summer at camp we were all thrilled to learn that Meg Swansen is working on a new book of Elizabeth Zimmermann designs with garter stitch that will include several previously unpublished pieces. There was a mitered jacket, with a colorwork border, that we were all really taken with. I tried it on and really loved it. I wanted to get a few photographs of it on me so I went into the hall with my camera to snap a few in the big mirror outside the conference room. What followed was an epic FAIL. Seriously, has anyone ever fouled up a self-portrait in the mirror shot so thoroughly?

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July 22, 2009

Favorite Camp Photo

Joyce Williams, the author of Latvian Dreams and Armenian Knitting, is a flawless knitter. Kim and I have remarked often that we want to be Joyce when we grow up. But more than anything Joyce is an elegant woman, always impeccably dressed and stylishly accessorized.

Which is why I love this picture.

Joyce modeling a hat she purchased on a recent trip to Peru.


July 21, 2009

And This One Time, at Knitting Camp

I'm back from Wisconsin. I completely reverted to a 15 year old state while I was there, eating tons of junk food, staying up all night and laughing and laughing and laughing.

At least I wasn't the only one having fun.

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July 27, 2008

My Knitting Bag Runneth Over

After the thrill of finishing the back of my Auburn Camp Shirt I quickly started the first front.

The teeny needles were starting to wear on me--both literally and figuratively--so I decided to swatch for the Ravelympics. Kim, my friend from camp, is organizing Team Knitting Camp. I had to join. I've decided to knit the cardigan Seamless Hybrid in the shirt yoke variation. I'm working in good old Cascade 220.

I've got my (alleged) gauge and am ready to start.

I have Meg Swansen's DVD for the Baby Surprise Jacket. I've knit a few already but Meg always has useful tips and tricks. Plus I think I was feeling lonesome for camp. I have a bag of mill ends of Mountain Colors Bearfoot that I've been wanting to turn into a BSJ for a few years. Last night I cast on.

I'm just going to knit through them all and hope that it melds.

I've also got the contest prizes to mail out tomorrow.

That's two tool cases from Schoolhouse Press and several skeins of yarn from Berocco I won as a door prize. I know regifting is a little tacky but why not share the wealth, right?

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July 23, 2008

Knitting Camp: The Food

Each year I suffer a bit of culture shock when I get to camp. Northern Wisconsin is a far cry from Seattle.

I was looking forward to the fried pickles which sound disgusting but taste so fantastic. I got to try Culver's for the first time. Their sign reads "Frozen Custard ButterBurgers" Once you realize they mean frozen custard and ButterBurgers it sounds a bit better. But what the heck is a butterburger? A burger brushed with butter of course! And the frozen custard. Mmmm. Dense, creamy and delicious. My friend Pam was smart. She skipped lunch entirely and went straight to the custard.

The cup reads, "People who have never eaten at Culver's don't know what they're missing. But I do and that makes me sad for them."

There was the Teppanyaki dinner which featured about a pound of butter. Not how they do it Japan I suspect.

One of our dinnermates--I won't name names so as not to embarrass her--nearly jumped under the table the first time our chef created a huge fireball. And then we started talking politics and things got a little more heated. Later Kim and I did a reenactment that you can see on her blog.


July 22, 2008

Camp: The Knitting

I cast on for my Giant Latvian Mitten Cardigan just before I left for camp. I continued on the colorwork once I got there. Then I got that sinking feeling that only comes from twisting the cast on of a sweater with 306 stitches and 6 rounds of painstaking colorwork.

No choice here. It's cutting time.

Cast on a new steek and keep knitting.

I took lots of photos this time around of the original GLMC for guidance and inspiration.

I am also this close to finishing the back of the Auburn Camp shirt.

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Still Giggling

I have not laughed so much in a weekend in I don't know how long. Camp this summer was a really relaxed event. Despite my 10-hour delay (yes, I sat at Seatac for 11.5 hours before boarding a plane that actually left the ground) I had a wonderful time. This year's group of campers was very low-key--except for me and a group of friends who ate and laughed and pounded on the table all weekend.

Kim, me, Meg and Denise

Amy Detjen and me

I don't want to go to work. I want to go back to camp.