For some reason, I cannot explain, I joined a group dedicated to cake yarns. I love those things but I don’t know what compelled me to join a group that revered them enough to form a cult. And then, because I apparently want to do unexplainable things, I decided to pull 10 skeins of the stuff from the free range to take a picture to post to the group.You know, to show I wasn’t some sort of cake yarn group troll.

I did not take the photo – I found this one – and I will not post it to the group. I find it a little creepy that I have a photo of cake yarn, ignore the skein on the right. I will admit I collected six balls before I decided I was a little nuts for even considering it.

OK, now I am curious about how many cakes I have running around. A quick glance shows me: Caron Big Cakes (3 colors), Caron Cakes, Caron Tea Cakes and Chunky cakes, Mandala cakes (in about 5 colors), Yarn Bee Sugar Wheel (about 7 colors.) I know there are some Bernat Pops and some Sweet Rolls and a cake from Plymouth running the range as well. My yarn sweet tooth has enough to gnaw on for a bit. I have it in mind to add some cakes from Ice Yarns to the range. I thought I was doing well to pass those up when I ordered. Nest time they’re mine.

Cake yarns play a role in the next, yet unnamed, collection. I’ve been using Caron Big Cakesfor the Taffy Pull scarves and the new collection will introduce an entirely new item which will be made with chunky yarn in solids and yarns that either stripe or color block. Right up cake yarn alley. Oh, Imma have to tell the mayor of Knitsville we should name something Cake Yarn Alley. Cuz that’s just too good a name to pass up.

Thy will be done is, of course, part of the Lord’s Prayer. It is also a part of knitting. I have finished the prayer shawl and have started making another Taffy Pull scarf in the colorway Pistachio Macaron. I had to measure the chain that started the scarf as the pattern says it’s 85 inches but the last few I’ve made have been more than 90 or more. That’s because I didn’t allow for the stretch of the chain when I started doing rows.

I don’t have a problem with it being longer, long scarves are on trend, but it may be a little disconcerting if you’re expecting something to be 7 feet and it turns out to be 9. Like a guy. There’s a big difference between a guy who’s 7 feet and one who is 9 feet. You’re gonna get a nose bleed looking at him either way but at least you’ll see his face if he’s shorter.

But here’s the thing: if I stretch the fabric when I measure it, I feel like I’m cheating. So I either go with making it longer or compromise and go halfsies. That allows for a little stretch and ease. I can also use the word approx. in my description and put in a note that says it could be longer than 85 inches. Caveat Emptor.

It’s all about that evil gauge that will change with not only needle size but with the same yarn in a different color. As flexible as knitting is, it cannot run from gauge – even when gauge doesn’t matter. 

I cannot find my glasses. They have been lost since last Sunday. I asked Mr. H if he’s been able to find them and he informed me he hasn’t been looking. This morning he told me he put all the glasses he found on the bookcase.

“You found glasses?”
“I said I put all of the on the bookcase?”
All of them?”
“Four or five pair.”
“I have four or five pair of reading glasses. They were on the table.”
“I put them on the bookcase.”
“Why?”
“So you could see them and see if your glasses are there.”
“But I put them on the table. I already know my glasses aren’t there. So, you didn’t actually find anything new?’
“No.”

Am I the only one?

 

I love Hayfield Colour Rich Chunky. I have a few skeins of it in I think three colors. It’s soft and squishy and I will get to review if this month because I am using it to make the Lacy Slouch hat. Here’s the thing: it’s discontinued. Can’t get more of it. Not even to be ripped off from EBay. No more of it. The closest I can find to sub for it is Premier Puzzle Yarn. But there’s nothing like the original one you find and I love the chunky stuff.

I started making the hat Saturday night after finishing the prayer shawl and yesterday morning right before I went downstairs, I thought that perhaps I shouldn’t continue making the hat with the Chunky. The colors weren’t lining up the right way for me and it would look a little too distracting because the marbling would look bad. Perhaps it would have been better if I frogged it and started over 

with a different yarn. Say, like this one. 

This skein, which happened to be right outside the 

office door, was ready to spring into action. I took the skein, went downstairs and picked up the hat, which was really nothing more yet than the brim, and prepared to frog. But then a strange thing happened. The chunky made a protest. I was hit with, wait, this doesn’t look so bad. Where did I get the idea this wouldn’t look good?

From the other skein, of course. Shenanigans. Yarn shenanigans. I don’t think I’ve ever run into it before. One skein of print yarn dissing another. That’s almost rude. I actually have the I Love This Yarn – Print in gray and black. I used it to make the Basic Beanie for this collection so I’ll be able to compare the two side by side. But I never expected to have a rogue skein that wasn’t in the same colorway want to Bogart in and replace a hat that’s already started. 

Of course now the question becomes: do I let the little bugger get away with it? Do I knit the next Lace Slouchy in the Strawberry Jam? It would look cute. It would stripe in those red and black shades. No denying it. But can we reward such behavior? Wouldn’t that encourage other skeins to put down their brethren? I want fiber tolerance. At the very least, the skein has gotten to come downstairs with the elite skeins.That could motivate others to follow.

There is only one Lace Slouchy in the next collection. I think a good consequence would be for the Strawberry Jam to sit that one out and we can discuss it again in collection 5. That’ll teach it.

 I have one of those jobs that can be done – for the most part – in front of the television or while listening to music. Or outdoors, you get the idea. I am not chained to a desk. Though I am at a desk at this very moment. You don’t need a degree to do my job. Though there are Masters Degrees in knitting available if you look. I’m gonna make you look for yourself. I find some of them funny. People tend not to take your knitting career choice seriously until you show them how much of a living one can make. It doesn’t take much to impress because folks think of this as a hobby thing not a job thing.

It doesn’t feel like it to them and sometimes to me. But then I find something like you see here. I was looking for inspiration on what to write about when I saw a file on my laptop called Projects and Yarn. I do not remember making this file and when I opened it, there were several pics of this. I do remember doing this and I’ve done it since.

This is where I admit to having to look up the name of the stitch because I can’t ever remember it. For the record, it’s the Bavarian Stitch. I believe I continued with this and made a blanket that was given away at the family get together.

This was not an easy stitch for me to learn. For me, crochet stitches are harder for me to learn. Knitting is a natural love for me. I didn’t love crochet at first. Didn’t respect it at all. I have slowly come to enjoy it almost as much as knitting. Knitting will remain my love, If I had to choose, I would knit over crochet but there are times when I quite look forward to putting down the needles and picking up the hook.

What this photo reminds me is that there is work in this unusual career I have chosen for myself. I took it from just a hobby on purpose and circumstances have led me to think about it in a clinical manner because I don’t want to have a hobby business. I want a sustaining business. Should something happen to our finances, I want to be able to have a base to start over with.

To some who see me knit in public, it doesn’t feel like it, but I take it seriously – while I maintain the spiritual side that is provides me and the fun and community that comes with sharing it with folks who also knit or crochet and those who just admire our doing it.

This isn’t hard work, at least not the visible part of the business career, but I work hard at it.

 

There was a time why I decided to indulge in dyeing some yarn. I used Kool-Aid. I still have one or two skeins from when I colored it – about eight years ago. The color is holding up. Which is why when people offer me Kool-Aid, I won’t touch the stuff.

I got nothing against one of the drinks of my youth. Except I find it hard to drink yarn dye. And that’s what Kool-Aid is to me now. Somewhere in the yarn room are honest to goodness dyes. Powders that are meant to hold wet yarn and turn it pretty colors. I can only find the green and have no idea where the rest are and I haven’t seen them in years, either.

I don’t think I’m being particularly paranoid. The stuff has stuck around, unfaded, on natural fiber going on a decade. Ain’t nothing more natural than a body. I think it would be perfectly accurate if on one of those murder mystery shows, the medical examiner opens a body and discovers a set of grape lungs and a cherry liver.

I’m not quite ready to jump back into the dye pool. It takes time and prep and there are other ways I’d rather spend my time. But it is a fun way to spend that time. When I was into it, I was really into it. I sold the skeins in the photo except the pale blue on the right. That’s the one that is still in the caged section of the yarn room. I don’t know that I have a desire to knit with it. I purchased the fiber for the purpose of dyeing it and I fill the duty is done. There’s nothing else to do with it. Kinda silly. I should knit with it if for no other reason to see how my dye job knits up.

It does pique the curiosity just a little. The next time I run across it, I won’t be in such a hurry to pass it by. A simple winter hat will probably do it. I don’t know how big the ball is but I can probably get a hat out of it. I still won’t touch the stuff to drink it. That ship has completely sailed.

These are The Temptations. Classic. Iconic. Talented beyond measure and addictive. If one is a true music aficionado, one cannot resist the temptation. Some of their song define my knitting life quite accurately.

Ball of Confusion
I’ll Try Something New
With These Hands

I mark long trips in the car with how many times I have to play the CD I have of their greatest hits. That’s the one disc I can play over and over because it is my car jam.

These are also temptations. Especially those four balls over to the right. Those are skeins of Lion Brand Jeans yarn. And I am in love. It has been quite some time since I had a yarn that I loved. I have an affinity for all things yarn but when one knits so much and does so for a job, then yarn can sometimes be nothing more than a means to an end. 

I am surrounded by yarn – certainly more than I will use in the next few years. Note to self: set a challenge to use 100 balls of yarn in 100 days. It is the act of knitting itself that I am most in love with. Although, I won’t knit with just anything, I learned on a ball of crochet thread. it is knitting that gets to me. The yarn is a partner.

But the first time I used the Jeans, I wanted to live in the stuff. I love the feel. I love the drape.I was tempted to stock up when Lion Brand was doing a 45% discount and again when JoAnn had it on sale plus a 20% off coupon. But I didn’t. Because I have to discipline and control over having this nectar in my cup. My yarn blitz is in December and then it’s on.Both the Jeans and the Jeans Colors will find themselves grazing with the other free range skeins in the yarn room. I have only used one of those four yarns pictured there. The others are on the range somewhere. I think I know where one of them is but can’t say for sure. The others I will run across at some point in time. I am filled with anticipation at the thought. I won’t go looking for them on purpose. That’s part of the fun of being me. Avoiding the temptations is a way to enjoy the indulgence when I finally find it. After all, I Ain’t Too Proud to Beg I’m just glad I don’t have to.

The things I do.

I was at StitchCraft – the knitting group in Knitsville – and I was looking at what everyone was making and it hit me that I knit for my shop while everyone else knits for themselves or as gifts for someone else.

Now, I love that I can make a living knitting and designing. That’s a great gig. But when I see the sweaters, shrugs and other 

 

pieces of clothing that were being made around me, I couldn’t help but think I was perhaps a little…well…boring with my knitting. And then I remembered I designed and knit this. It came to me as I was uploading a pattern to my Ravelry shop. It occured to me I haven’t written this pattern or the pattern for a infinity scarf.

Yes, this is the hat worn by Dante Alighieri of Dante’s Inferno fame. This was a custom request and the client offered to pay me $20 more if I would send him photos of the hat in progress.

OK. So, I’m going to cross boring off the list. The things I do can sometimes be routine and there is a business aspect to it because it is a business. But it isn’t boring. All that means is I need to branch out into some other territories and that is already happening. Over the past few days, I’ve been uploading a pattern a day to Ravelry. I’m up to two dozen there are four more I have to do of existing patterns and then the three that are part of the latest collection.

I will have to write this pattern and the one for the scarf. I went looking through my pattern notes and didn’t see any for either or them. Really strange but I will get that done. I have a collection coming that will have four or five patterns in it. There’s no reason two of them can’t be this hat and the cowl. I sold the dante hat twice and it was not boring to make. I will have to make it again for the pattern. I definitely will not be bored.

WTF

This is yarn. This is pink yarn. This is pink yarn I have in my stash, I don’t do pink much but I have it for a specific purpose.

I also have a nephew – well, I have several wonderful nephews – this one, Alex, made a request that I knit him something. Hear that, Mr. Honey? Alex asked that I knit him something.

A pair of pink gloves.

WTF?

At first I thought he was kidding but he reminded a few months ago that he still didn’t have them and he still wanted them/ So, I have it on my list to knit the kid (almost high school age) a pair or pink gloves.

Here’s the thing: I’ve never knit gloves. Fingerless mitts. Mittens. Those I have done but not a pair of gloves.I have scoured Ravelry and found this. I will be using that pattern when I start working on them It looked simple enough. Which means, I will change it around to suit me better. It’s what I do. IT’s the fingers that give me pause. That looks like work. Each finger put on dpns and worked. Makes me think the best thing to do is just knit the middle finger. Oh c’mon, I can’t be the first person who thought of that.

I am beginning to think there are no rules to man knitting. I thought my nephew would forget he made the request and he was very firm with his reminder and that he likes pink and he doesn’t care who says anything about it. He likes what he likes and he’ll stand on it. That boy is so getting a pair of pink gloves made by his auntie.

I wonder if male knitters know what guys want. I know they won’t have problems with their girlfriends. While a man may scoff if a woman says her boyfriend knit her a sweater, this is something she will lead with on a girls’ night out.

“Hey, girl, how you doing?’
“My boyfriend made me this sweater.”
“WTF!”

Like this sweater? So do I. It’s called Siberia and you can see it for yourself. It’s a free pattern from Drops. They have some interesting (read strange) patterns over there. They have about five pages of men’s sweaters and three of the five frighten me. But this is a sweater I can get behind. A quick glance shows while it may consume some time, it’s not a particularly hard pattern.

I have been after Mr. Honey to knit him a sweater. It’s been more than 20 years so I’m thinking the boyfriend sweater curse ain’t nothing to fear. Every time I approach the subject, I am met with the same answer: No Way.

I am not allowed to make him a sweater. Because he won’t wear it. He has, he says, a drawer full of sweaters that he does not wear. I can attest to this. He wears sweaters maybe once in the winter season and that’s because we’re going somewhere. The sweater he wears the most is a sweater my late mom gave him – so that’s something. And I haven’t seen him in it for years. So I get it.

Except I don’t get it. 

I don’t think he gets that I wouldn’t bug him to wear the sweater. I just want him to have it. There’s a tradition here that he’s just not getting with and,honestly, our marriage is so solid that this can be considered an issue. He looks good in sweaters. He has a long torso that’s made for wearing sweaters. So every other year or so when he wears a sweater, he can wear the one I make him. And alternate between that one and the one Mom gave him. I don’t see why he doesn’t get the romance of it.

He will wear a scarf. He will wear a scarf I knit. In fact, that’s what he takes. He has two scarves I made and he took the scarf that came with my coat. Yes, I know. I can make him a scarf. But I want to make a sweater, dang it. I’ve made a sweater for women and for kids but never for a guy. I wanted him to be my first. Is that so wrong?

I try to keep work hours but that hasn’t really worked out well. So, I put little activities in between work sessions but yesterday, Mr. Honey told me to put the knitting aside and clean up the living room so the new refrigerator could go through easily. So, I did. I don’t come from housekeepers so it took me all day to do it but I did not pick up my knitting until the living room was what I would pass off as clean. I’d even open the door of someone came by; that’s how confident I am.

But ignoring my knitting wasn’t easy. It was bad enough to have all the yarn piled up in one section of the living room where they could actually organize but then to ignore the cowl design I’m working on. And the bobbles. That took a force of nature I didn’t know I possessed.

So, it’s livable and passable and I have vowed never to let it revert again. It is but a springboard to better cleaning and better living. Then Mr. H announced we may not need a new fridge. He noticed ice was blocking the vents and now he’s doing an experiment to see if the fridge is cooling again after clearing them.

The yarn is saying it was an attempt to come between us. But that doesn’t sound like him. More like a trick to get me to finally have a significant cleaning session. That makes more sense. The poor guy as something of a clean freak and I was a lot better pre-Etsy. 

But now, there can be peace again in the kingdom. Just have to do the living room and kitchen and he will be one happy camper and I will be a happy camera’s wife.

And the yarn won’t have to suffer separation anxiety anymore.