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Angelarae Knits: February 2006

Angelarae Knits

...and Crochets

My Photo
Location: Raleigh, NC, United States

Hello! Welcome to my Blog! I live and enjoy the fibery crafts here, in Raleigh, NC with my husband and 5 children! I love to share patterns, tips, and recipes along with my spinning from time to time. I hope you'll enjoy your time here and stick around a bit!

Monday, February 27, 2006

f-r-a-n-t-i-c: (adj.) Affected with or marked by frenzy or mania, uncontrolled by reason...

I am nearly finished with my fair isle bag!! I am finishing up the hemming and weaving in (and weaving in) ends of this piece. After that, I can start on the icord handles. I have to say that I considered several options in order to technically finish this Olympic project on time. The following are a sample of the less frantic ones:

1)Rush. Cut corners (one less row of black and two less of a red stripe won't matter, right?) . This one was out almost as soon as it was conceived. Too much work has gone into this for it to come out looking marginal. I could never live with that.

2) Buy straps instead of making icord. Not a bad idea at all, except that I tried Michael's and A.C. Moore- no such animal there. The one's used in the pattern are $28 a piece and I need 2. That's out as well. Back to the drawing board.

3) Make my own purse straps out of strips of leather found at Michael's. Guaranteed to look crappy. Forget that.

4)Knit in my sleep and wake up to a finished project. I have not yet mastered this technique, so that leaves....

5)Relax and finish this bag with the usual amount of care I give and be very pleased with the results in relation to the time spent. This option has particular merit because it affords me the opportunity to be civil to my husband and sweet children and not chew them to pieces every time I open my mouth. (with the ultimate result of my being kicked into bed-literally) Yeah. Think I'll go with option 4. So here are my picks of my nearly done fair isle bag.

My lovely daughter, Emma, before Mommy joined the Fair Isle Team.
(See how happy she looks?:)

Emma after the fair isle. (She is under this thing. Those are her legs sticking out from under the huge freaking purse! (poor thing!)

<--------Emma's legs

Notwithstanding the frantic nature of the last few days, I am delighted that the bag came out in the correct shape, despite the fact that I had made another crucial error and could not make the directed needle size change (from 9 to 8 circular) for the top of the bag because I did *not* have one. So, I knit the whole thing with a 9. Seems to be okay, though.

Well, I am off to take a well deserved hot bath to sooth my aching arms, neck and back. I expect to finish this bag tonight.

I want to congratulate all of the athletes, though. This has been so much fun!!! Also, I have visited quite a few finished projects this a.m. and am beyond impressed. I feel truely blessed to be associated with all of you. It has been a pleasure. Now for my next project.....;->

Sunday, February 26, 2006

Hello fellow Olympians!

I have been working vigorously to finish my Olympic project, but realized in the wee hours of this a.m. that I have made a critical error. I have been eyeing the fair isle chart along with instructions for this item for how long now? 4 weeks? Anyway, it seems, much to my surprise, that the pattern isn't almost done once the chart is complete, as I had thought. There is quite a bit of knitting to do after that, as well. Even considering I had already calculated in extra time for the icords, I did not for the extra 10 rows knit up for the hem. (Sigh) So I have learned a valuable lesson. No matter how much I feel that I know what the pattern will be, in a nutshell, nutshells do not finish a project- not even close. Well, here goes! I'll do my best to finish by tonight, but, I have to tell you, it ain't looking good.


Friday, February 24, 2006

Thanks you guys!

Thanks to everyone who contributed ideas for my bag handles. Looks like it will be a thick icord(2) in black. I am "fairly" sick of fair isles as of this writing, but have now had my 2nd bourbon and Coke and should be good to go for a while. I only have about 8 rows to go, and I have now mastered the art of two fisted fair isles so things are much less tangly and are moving along faster. At this point, I am expecting to finish on time. (bourbon and Cokes notwithstanding) Hope all of you athletes out there are feeling as good as I am right now!

Happy stitching!


Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Help!! The flame goes out this coming Sunday and I need a plan for the handle of this bag. The leather ones are out, so - drawstrings and handles or just handles, one handle or two(icord)? ? . Post suggestions in comments, please. Any ideas welcome!!! Thanks in advance:)


Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Here are the two baby items I have been
working on for the last couple of weeks.
The pink cardigan is Edith's Chunky Baby
Sweater - Hers is knit with 5 balls of Noro
Kuyeon Yarn (Beautiful yarn, but 7.95/skein) Mine was knit with Lion Brand Woolease and only required 3 skeins. I knit it up in 1 day and the total cost, with buttons, was $9.50$12.77 (buttons not on sale at lyc). That includes buttons. *I got 4 Beatrix Potter buttons for this sweater* very cute!

Her sweater: $71.40 w/needles and stitch holders
My sweater: $9.50 $12.77 w/yarn used as stitch holders and needles I had ( didn't have to buy 17 needles)

The bootie is made w/ Berocco Suede and Berocco Plush. They are very soft! Tried using other suede yarn but the gauge was all wrong. (FYI)

F-O-C-U-S (n): The concentration of attention or energy on something

Well, fellow Olympians, here is the promised picture of my progress so far on the Fair Isle Bag I am knitting for the 2006 Kitting Olympics. (as of yesterday evening at approximately 10:00 P.M.)


I have finished 41 of 78 rows and will continue working tonight. I think it looks pretty nice considering I used the wool yarn I had on hand rather than going out and buying the exact colors called for in the pattern. The green I used is actually supposed to be more of a greenish blue, but it looks okay, I guess. According to yarnharlots olympic ticker, we have 4days, 22 hours, 35 minutes and 25 seconds to go before the flame goes out. Therefore, since I have 37 rows to complete, I need to knit at least 12.5 rows per day which will leave me one day for finishing and felting said item. Whew! Wish me luck!

It is a beautiful day here in Raleigh. The temperature is 60 degrees and there is a light breeze. Aren't these daffodils lovely? This bed is in dire need of weeding. Think I'll get to it in a few minutes. Hope everyone has a wonderful day!


When the One Great Scorer comes to write
against your name -
He marks - not that you won or lost -
but how you played the game.
Grantland Rice

Here we are at the final stretch of the 2006 Knitting Olympics. The links describe what some of us are resorting to (drinking and fits of panic) and the above quote is meant to inspire us to better things!

(Now where did I put that bottle of Jack??)

Jen-La-An Olympic Moment...
Yarn Harlot: Well Bob...

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Well, it has been a long weekend. My children had 'early release' Friday (early relief day, as my 8 yr-old calls it) so my weekend started that afternoon. I finished a baby sweater I have been working on and started a new set of suede booties to go with it. They are the ones from 'Candy Tots.' Very cute. Can I enjoy the fruits of my labor and bask in the pleasure of another project finished and finished well? Appearently not. What follows is a telephone conversation I had with my damn dear sister not 10 minutes ago:

Becky(Sis): I just logged onto your blog but there was nothing new to read.

Me: Oh yeah, I'm sorry I haven't posted this weekend. It's been kinda busy.

Becky: So how is your project going?

Me: Project? What project?

Becky: (her voice has a little edge to it)You know, your Olympic project? The only one you are supposed to be working on?!

Me: Oh, that project, yes, it's coming along nicely and I finished that other one you were admonishing me for yesterday, you know, the baby sweater.

Becky: Isn't part of the Olympics supposed to be focus?(????)Shouldn't you be putting all your best efforts into the bag you are making for the games?

Me: I guess that's a good point. But I'm nearly halfway done with my Olympic project so I shouldn't have any problem finishing it.

Becky: You're going to be rushing to get it done at the last minute, I just know it.

Me: Okay, I get the point.

Becky: Blah, blah, blah, yahda, yahda, yahda...

And so on, and so on, and so forth...you get the idea>:(

So I have been sufficiently chastened for my wayward behavior. I need to be more 'focused' and press on to the goal of a lovely felted fair isles bag completed by the end of the winter games. And I will...just as soon as I finsh the lovely suede booties I cast on tonight. After all, I have until...ugh!!!I just looked at yarnharlot's cursed knitting olympics counter and now realize that I do not have as much time as I thought-6 days, 17hrs, 9 mins, 21 seconds. No kidding, I've got to get on this thing. The booties will have to wait!

Oh, by the way, you may not hear from me for a few days!


Thursday, February 16, 2006

I am lying on the couch in my living room at about 12:40 on Wednesday morning. My daughter is stomping off to bed because I have set up sleeping quarters on the couch in order to keep her from staying up all night watching television (digital cable has become a curse). As I huddle my cold feet under the blanket, I ask Katie to check the thermostat and turn up the heat. She says 66 degrees but slinks into her room and shuts the door. So I grumble and get up from the couch and my blanket and make my way down the hall toward the thermostat, but I am sidetracked by the sight of my laptop which I haven't touched since Monday and I have just remembered that I am supposed to email some ladies in my knitting group about tonights meeting. So, I sit down and turn the thing on.
"What are you doing ?" my husband says from his perch on the large, warm, comfy, bed.
"Checking my email," I say.
As I am looking for a reply from one of the knit ladies(because I can't remember her email and I can find it in one of hers to me), I see a comment posted to my blog, so I moderate that and am thrilled to see that I have seventy hits for today. So, of course, I have to check the stats. Then I begin to feel guilty because I have not yet posted Olympic knitting pics yet, so I do that and remember my saintly coach, Sandy. I read her Ms. Grumpypants post and post a comment there. Then, I had to go to bloglines and read updates to my bloglist. The Yarnharlot made me laugh out loud which prompted my husband to ask, "What are you doing...I thought you were just checking email?" So I remember the church ladies, send their update, switch off the laptop, yawn, kiss hubby goodnight and make my way back to the couch. As I crawl under the blanket and feel the cold material on my legs, I realize I never turned up the heat.
Now I ask you, is it any wonder that I forgot to brush my teeth?


Monday, February 13, 2006

Here are my Olympic knitting project pics:

<---This is what my project looked like Friday night, after the end of opening ceremonies. Notice the holes. Here's hoping that the felting process is real forgiving.

Here's what my project looked like as of yesterday. Spent most of today finishing a coat for my daughter. So, no progress since this. ---->

Here is one of the two PDA cases I am working on for my Sis, Becky.
The next one will be funkified! ---->

One Hundred and One Things About Me.....(Okay 34 things, but whose counting). Obviously not me, because I see now that there are 35, not 34...

1.I love knitting.
2. I enjoy teaching others to knit.
3. When I teach knitting, I sometimes forget that too much information can be a bad thing. Curb your enthusiasm. Beginner's need to learn the cast on first! Cables and bobbles come much later!
4.I procrastinate too often.
5.I am a people person. Thank God for blogging, because I think I'd be really lonely otherwise.
6.I have 5 children. Each one is unique and wonderful!
7.I have been married to my DH for 21 years. Wow!
8.I am from the Raleigh/Durham area.
9.I love Dave Matthew's music, much to my teens' chagrin. They think he's okay, but have heard 'Satellite' one too many times.
10.I am 42 and have a college age(19) daughter. But I still think that I am young despite the grey hairs said daughter loves to count. I guess if she can still count them, there must not really be that many. Right???
11. I do color my hair. I used to use only semi-permenant color, but recently switched to permanent. When katie can count greys right after coloring, time to switch.
12.My favorite color is green. It used to be blue. I'm not sure why?
13.I love to write. Again, thank God for blogs!
14.I love Modern Library books. My husband has the majority, numbering close to 100 - I have 3. I'd rather spend my money on yarn.
15.Due to above obsessions, our dates usually end up at the bookstore, Reader's Corner, and at the local yarn shop-Great Yarns.
16.I believe wisdom resides in the heart, not the brain so much.
17.I try to spend each day letting those I love know how much I appreciate them in my life because you never know when you may not be able to tell them again.
18.I believe love is a decision. No such thing as falling out of love. You must make a decision to stop loving someone to really stop.
19.There is nothing more important than the loved ones in my life. As long as they are with me, I can survive anything.
20.My knitting completes me, so dont f!*@ with that!
21. My grandmother taught me to knit when I was about 10 years old.
22. I learned the basic knit and purl stitches, knit a few rows and did not pick it up again until I was 38. Now, I knit almost every day, and make a point to show my grandmother my accomplishments whenever I can. She always smiles.
23. I always have at least four or five projects going at the same time. This drives my husband crazy. When I point out the stacks of books in every corner of our room, he just grunts at me.
24. Did I mention that he collects other kinds of books, too?
25. Did I also mention that he reads alot of them? Boring stuff, too! Anyone else read about the history of 'old English' or Norse mythology? I think not.
26. If you do, please accept my apologies.
27.I so enjoy reading all of your blogs and sharing them with others. My DH thinks I am wasting my time. If he only knew!
28.I believe in God and Jesus.
29.I don't think this makes me intollerant, extremist, or by the way, perfect.
30. I love all people. I think this is what God wants me to do.
31. I have a very old cat named Spike. He's so smart. I am just waiting for him to speak to me one day.
32.I also have 2 other cats named Blondie and Boo Radley. My dogs are Darwin(beagle) and Zoe(terrier).
33.I worry more than I should.
34. I also weigh more than I should. I think these two things, worrying and eating too much, go together.
35.Think I'll post these as 1010 things about me....no one will read them all, right???(just kidding).

TIME.com: Gold-Medal Motives -- Feb. 20, 2006 -- Page 1

Another article about our beloved games- Time Magazine, no less!

Knitting for the gold
Here's a link to an article from the Oregonian about the 2006 Knitting Olympics. Very cool!

Friday, February 10, 2006

Hey all you athletes out there!

Got a decent start to my felted fair isles bag. Just the beginning rounds done on double points then switched to circular needles after a series of increases from 9 stitches up to 72 stitches. Now I have made the switch and begun knitting stripes of color into the bottom of the bag. I'll work on it a little more in the morning and post a pic. (Yawn) Good night, for now. I'm sleepy and tomorrow is another day.


The day has dawned on the opening of the Olympic games! (the 2006 Knitting Olympics, that is). I have knitted my gauge swatch, organized the knitting bag with my Patton's Classic Marino Wool that I will be using to knit my felted fair isle bag, along with all the appropriate notions, and researched my pattern and Fair Isle knitting to the best of my ability. I would like to officially recognize my self-appointed olympic coach, Sandy from Sandy's Knitting. I hope this is okay with her because, if not for her, I would be sitting with my head in the toilet right now! So I am raising my toarch and ready to cast-on! To all of you out there on the US Olympic Team, as Sandy would say, "YOU can do it!" Knit On!!!!

P.S. If Grommitt can color knit, by golly, so can I!!!

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Hi Everyone!

Real quick post this morning as I am on my way out the door to sub at my daughter's preschool. We are looking at a cold grey day today with possibly some snow. Yikes! I hate driving in snow! Anyway, got my yarn yesterday for these adorable booties! They are done in Berroco 'Suede' and 'Plush.' Can't wait to start!!!:)

Have a great day!


Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Sunrise Circle Jacket

Check out this Jacket! Most sweaters are knit from the bottom up (sometimes top down), but this clever cardigan is worked beginning at the wrist, up the sleeve and across the front with a series of decreases creating a cunning half-circle. Too coool! This is a free pattern in .pdf format. Visit Interweave to download and save. I promise that I will be knitting this soon! Maybe a different color....?

Here is the Felted Fair Isle Bag I will knit in the 2006 Knitting Olympics. I will be on the US Fair Isle Team. We will cast on the night of the Winter Olympics opening ceremonies on February 10th and must be finished before the flame goes out on February 26th. That's 16 days, and the project must be a challenge for us to finish in that amount of time. Think this will do the trick? I, personally, think I have lost my fricken mind! Check out the 2006 Olympic link on this site to get more details and enter the games. This particular pattern comes from Interweave Knits.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

New Book Alert!

Just what I need! A cool book of patterns to knit or crochet with one ball of yarn! This book is by Leigh Radford and there are 30 patterns included. This 'one' shall soon be on my bookshelf!


Hey everyone! Kinda a grey day here in Raleigh. The weather has been strange-one day on the warm side, the next very cold. I should be sneezing and hacking very soon now. Heard that Lily Chin has a new show on the Oxygen Network called 'Stitchcraft.' My guess is that it will cover both knitting and crochet. The pilot airs Sunday, March 5th at 3:00 pm on Oxygen. I'm looking forward to seeing this. Lily always has great tips. I wonder how many of us knitters out there actually crochet as well. Post a comment! I'll be working on my sister's PDA case from the Stitch 'n Bitch Knitter's Handbook. She needs two, one for each PDA!(whatever!) Anyway, I have to make them different enough to tell them apart(she has two seperate territories and works very hard so I'm really just teasing-I'm jealous! Her's is better than mine and she has two!)Like I'd know what to do with two HP handheld computers! (Hey, maybe I could keep up with my yarn stash? Hmmm...A software for that purpose? Hmmm.....(Like I need another project?!!) Oh well! Back to my needles and yarn! Busy knitting day ahead. Hope all of you have a wonderful day!

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Johannes Vermeer "A Lady Writing" Oil on Canvas

I have written and rewritten this post 4 times, so please forgive my frustration; inspiration is waning. I am writing to apologize for neglecting you all of late. I have been mothering sick children, keeping doctor appointments, and recovering from a bug myself. I have not posted to either of my blogs in more than a week and have been cranky as a result. But I have learned a very valuable lesson. Not only am I a knitter, (let’s face it, I’m obsessed) I am also a writer. Just as I am thrown into a state of intense fear and desperation having left my knitting behind on a short trip to the store, when I neglect my writing, I am not myself. Writing, as knitting, completes me and gives me purpose. Not that the children and husband mentioned above do not, but the writing and knitting are for me. I need them. Just as I put a little of myself into each stitch that I knit, so too do I write from the locus of my feelings and intuitions. Both are personal. Knitting and writing go together. Why? Because they are both spiritual activities. Simple as that. Read through the hundreds of knitting blogs on the web if you don’t believe me. I have found some wonderful writing there. So, I am renewing my commitment to writing and will, from this time forward, think twice before putting off posts to my blogs. Also, I am looking for a ball of black yarn that I know I had in my lap two seconds ago....anyone?? Ang