Sunday, September 29, 2013

Knit Wear Love Retreat

Last weekend I traveled to the Sebasco Harbor Resort in Phippsburg, ME to attend the Make Wear Love Retreat hosted by Amy Herzog.  It was an amazing weekend!

When we checked in we received an amazing goodie bag that was filled with swatch size samples of some top notch yarns plus some fun accessories.

The first day for me was a full-day class on Knit to Flatter.  If you don't have this book in your library yet, you should get it.  It's full of helpful information on how to identify your body shape and then how to choose sweaters to best flatter it.  It also has some great patterns included.

The next two days were filled with classes on modifications with Amy, fabric with Clara Parkes, and color with Mary Jane Mucklestone. Yeah.  It was awesome :-)

Mary Jane designed a cowl for us so that we could experiment with color. I chose grey,white and red for mine so that I can wear it with my winter jacket.
 I picked colors that I would wear.  Other people just picked 3 or 6 colors of scraps they had in their stash.  You can see some of the results here.

There was of course some "camp" fun too. There was a scavenger hunt that I did a miserable job completing.  Some of the campers really got into it though and had fantastic pictures of their finds.  Saturday night we had a show and tell of our good and bad sweaters, got to try on Amy's samples, and had a lobster bake.
What knitting retreat would be complete without some fabulous vendors?  We had beautiful yarns from String Theory, Indigodragonfly, and The Woolen Rabbit.  I also stopped at Purl Diva and Halcyon Yarns along the way to the retreat.  I gave myself permission to buy whatever inspired me so I came home with 2 sweater quantities, 6 hats, 1 sock yarn and a skein of true lace weight.
I have already swatched with the Indigodragonfly MCN Worsted I bought.  I'm going to make Birch Bark with it, which is one of the 3 sweaters that Amy designed for the retreat.  I know the patterns are exclusive to the retreat for now.  I'm not sure when, or if, they will be released to the public.
I love the names Indigodragonfly gives their colors.  This is Curse Your Sudden but Inevitable Betrayal (Firefly).

So that's the nuts and bolts of the retreat, but I also have to say that I met some wonderful people too!  I know it's been said many times before, but I have to repeat it.  Knitters are some of the best people on earth!  What other group of people has such instant comraderie and friendship?  All it takes is sticks and string to have something to discuss.  

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Ten on Tuesday

10 Books on my To Read List

I enjoy reading almost as much as I enjoy knitting.  When I decided to really embrace audiobooks as well, I discovered that I could do both at the same time!  Life is good!  I generally though have a print book and an audiobook in progress at all times, because sometimes you just want to feel a book in your hands.  Or an e-reader :-)  When this week's prompt came from Carole I vowed to not let Tuesday get by me without posting.  After reviewing my wish lists on Amazon, Audible and Goodreads, I decided that these are the books at the top of my lists.

1. Life After Life by Kate Atkinson.  Coincidentally this is the book my Book Group has chosen for October!
2. Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter
3. Inferno by Dan Brown
4. Fall of Giants by Ken Follett
5. The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh
6. A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness
7. The Light in the Ruins by Chris Bohjalian
8. Orange is the New Black by Piper Kerman
9. Burial Rites by Hannah Kent
10. The Ghost Bride by Yangsze Choo

I'm adding a bonus selection too. This one isn't available yet, but it's definitely on my list.
11. Be Careful What you Wish For by Jeffrey Archer.  This is book 4 in The Clifton Chronicles and I can't wait for it to come out.  I am in love with this series! It's going to be a long wait for me until March!

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

WiP Wednesday

August is over and I have made a significant dent on my UFO's.  I'm pretty proud of myself that I did not cast on anything new and worked exclusively on existing projects.

I'm trying to continue working on WiP's, but also allow myself to cast on a couple new projects.

My Vodka Lemonade was cast on in late July, but I hardly worked on it in August.  I worked on it quite a bit over the weekend and am about 25% through my yarn for it.  I can't wait to separate the sleeves off.  There are getting to be a LOT of stitches on the needle now!
Last night I cast on Istanbul from the August Cookie A Sock Club shipment.  The yarn is Miss Babs new sock yarn, Cosmic, in this truly fabulous blue called Inkwell.  I. Love. This. Color! It makes me happy just to look at it :-)
The only thing I don't like about this sock so far is that the left leaning decrease is a slip 1, knit 1, pass slipped stitch over as opposed to ssk.  It's not laying as nice and smoothly as I'd like.  I'm slipping the stitch purl wise, but should I be slipping it knit wise?  I'm going to try a few and see if it looks better.

What do you think?  Am I doing it right or wrong?  Why decrease this way vs ssk?  Should I just change to ssk?