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November 2006 work around here, just play time

Well, nothing got done today. The late nighter I had yesterday made my entire day a bit difficult--I was dragging my feet all day and wishing I was asleep, but with 2 kiddos in the house, it is hard to go and take a nap...not unless I want to wake up to a floor full of chips, cheerios, and every other possible thing they can get their hands into.

But the day was not knitting/loom knitting free. The kiddos woke up to white fluffy snow and the first thing that came out of their mouths was a plea to play outside in the snow. I got them all dressed and ready but unprepared Mom didn't have any mittens (yeah, I could win the trophy for the most unprepared and worst mother in the world).

Wonderboy quickly suggested to sit down and knit them a pair of mittens. (he has this idea that I can sit and knit almost anything) I told him I didn't have any yarn (lies, lies, lies!). So off they went into the snow and they played, they came back 30 minutes later all frozen, despite the layers of clothes.

Then the mail came and with it a little special package with some lovely Knit Picks yarn, as soon as I opened it, Wonderboy screamed--Yay, yarn for my gloves!


To lazy to find a mitten pattern (needle knitted) to match the yarn and my gauge, I sat down and did the only natural thing--grabbed a loom and started circling away.

Although I have made mittens on a knitting loom before, I wanted to try a different approach--my previous approach consisted of making the little thumb tube separately but I didn't have a thumb loom around, so I tried a different approach.

Try 1: Done on the blue knifty knitter with short-row shaping for the top of the hand, little thumb is attached to the hand of the body and mattress stitched closed at the sides.


Verdict: Don't like: made the thumb too long. The overall body length and width fits Wonderboy though, so I may have to re-try this again--but in a different loom.

Try 2: Done on the Regular Gauge Mini-Wonderloom, top of the hand was shaped with decreasing at each side, just like you do on needles (divide the stitches in half, *k1, ssk, k to last 3 stitches, k2tog, k1, k1, ssk, k to last 3 sts, k2tog, knit next row, rep from *). I did a gather bind off, but I think on the next ones I will graft/kitchener stitch. This one fits little Benny...I will try it on her tomorrow morning when she wakes.


Verdict: Much better than the 1st try. The gauge is a lot tighter which makes for more insulation, more insulation means warm little hands, the shaping at the top also rocks. The pattern is definitely a keeper.

The thumb placement also seems to be better positioned than in the first try. Here is a closer look:


Now, I need to sit down and make a matching one for the last one I made and write down all the little details.

Once I have worked out all the kinks in the pattern, I will post it at LoomKnit and at DA in honor of the Dulaan project, stay tuned. If you have a Wonderloom and would like to test it out, drop me a note, I could use a test knitter or two :D.

Need more energy or more time

In trying to get more things done, I have been staying up really, really early (I can't say late, because it is not late, it is early). Last night or more correct this morning, I went to bed at 4am. I know, I am a nut!  A lot got accomplished but this morning I feel so tired. But I did managed to finish THE HAT (the important name that it received around the house).


I have been working on my step-outs for the Knitty Gritty show, so far, I have the completed project, 2 step outs, and need another 2 or 3 step outs, and 2 other completed projects (that's around 13,000 stitches!) : one in a blue and white color and another made in a bigger gauge. My goal is to have them all ready by the end of the week--uninterrupted, I can knit 1 hat a day in a fine gauge knitting loom. Do you think I can do it? Eeek.

For the first time in my life, I have been using a To-do list for the day, without it I am afraid I would skip my meals and even a shower.  By the end of the week, you will be very bored in seeing the same  brown and pink item, over and over, but I don't have it as bad as Stephanie, she has to make about a gazillion socks.

I also managed to seam up the finished vest for my test knitting. Little Benny didn't want me to send it off, she was adamant that it was for her little baby doll.


And in some grand and unexpected news, I have finally found a  project that I can knit for my darling hubby, the Man's Tweed Pullover from Cables Untangled.


I even showed it to him and he liked it, of course, his first concern "do you have time to knit that?", the answer is probably not right now, but as soon as I come back from California I will have free time and I think I have yarn that can be used as a substitute--Rowan wool cotton in a military green. I would love to have it finished for him by St. Valentines...but we will see what time brings.

Keeping secrets

I know something, I won't tell, I won't tell, I won't tell. I know something, I won't tell, I won't tell, I won't tell. Okay, ask me and I'll tell you...send me some sock yarn and I will definitely break down and tell you. C'mon run to your stash and find some pretty sock yarn and I'll let you know my secret.

I have been trying to keep a secret for about a month--I am so bad at it. I have been bursting at the seams to let it out. Even right now, I had to convince hubbers to let me tell....I am just so excited about it. It is such an innovation (well, not really innovation), but a big huge change in the loom knitting world. See this on it, make it bigger and see a closer view.


Need another angle? Here, try this one....


Do you know what my secret is? Don't know yet...well, my Knitty Gritty samples were created on it...and if you read yesterday's post, you will find out the great and wonderful secret I have been keeping.


Come closer, and I'll tell less than a week, Decor Accents will be introducing nylon pegs for their fine gauge knitting looms. Finally, nylon pegs for the finer gauge looms. If you are like me, the cotter pins make your teeth clench especially when your knitting tool touches them (kind of like when chalk makes that awful noice on the board).

The little nylon pegs are tiny and very firm--they are made with a special nylon mixture. Look at the head of the peg--designed with us loom knitters in mind--no big ball, no big lip to lift over, just a gentle little drop shape. (The little dot that you see on the head is where the manufacturer injects the nylon mixture into the mold) They even have a little groove to allow you to lift your stitches with your knitting tool (click on the last picture to see the pegs up close).



What a I don't have any was killing me to keep it a secret. I am so excited about the little guys...can't wait to see lots and lots of knitting looms with them.

Loomy Q & A Day: Colourwork on the Knitting loom

In our Loomy Question and Answer Day we are going to tackle the question of adding color to your loom knits.

Question: How do I add horizontal stripes to my loom knitted items? How do I work fair isle patterns?


(Picture caption: samplers to find the perfect motif for the Knitty Gritty show)

This topic right now comes close to my heart as it is part of my presentation for the Knitty Gritty show on knitting looms and to face reality, I know so little about it compared to some of the great needle knitters out there that I have acquired a small library of books with this topic. Some of them come with only charts, others come with informational and historical background.

If you are in search of books in this topic, I recommend the following:

1000 Great Knitting Motifs--great for loom knitters as everything is charted and you do not need to make any "translation".

The Art of Fair Isle Knitting--superb book: historical and informational, plus some patterns, and some charts.

Traditional Fair Isle Knitting--my first book that I got on this subject and I highly recommend it. Easy to read, great history background, charts.

In the video below, I demonstrate horizontal stripes, and working a simple stranded color pattern. Sorry for the background noise, the kids were playing :).

Enjoy, and as always, tips and questions are always welcomed.


Tip 1: When working your stranded color patterns, remember the following: consistency/yarn dominance

Background color--Over (reach over the foreground color to get this yarn)

Foreground color--Under (reach under the background color to get the foreground color yarn.

Keep this consistency throughout your pattern, if you don't, your motif won't be as defined.

Experiment before embarking with your project, try by exchanging which yarn is coming from above and which one from under--knit a complete chart repeat and see the difference.

Tip 2: Do not travel too far with your yarn, keep it to less than 1". If you travel to long, the knitted item will have overly long floats (Floats: the strand of yarn that travels behind the work). If traveling for more than 1 inch (or 3 stitches), weave the yarns around each other.

Tip 3: Block: items worked with stranded colour knitting look their best after blocking.

Tip 4: General tip when working with 2 different colors: keep a ball of yarn at each side of you. By keeping them separated the odds of the yarns tangling are less.

Tip 5: If possible, try to obtain a small gauge or even fine gauge knitting loom to try out your fair isle knits--your stitches will look more defined and the entire motif will look more crisp.

The samples swatches in the video were knitted on a fine gauge knitting loom and the hat was knitted on a regular gauge with 2 strands of worsted weight yarn. The three items were knitted with the Knit Stitch.

The force is with me...

Why didn't you tell me that I sometimes sound like Master Yoda, you know, talk backwards. I must live under a rock! You see, today was the first time that I have watched Star Wars (I must be the last person on earth, along with hubby who hasn't seen these movies)...Oohhh, the Force was not with me before, but now I am enlightened!! Hahahaha.

The force was with me today, as I was lucky enough to catch it on tv and look my knitting stars are aligned too, I almost have an FO! It should have been finished today, but I was too focus watching young Skywalker become eviiiiil, not to mention the seaming instructions are driving me a little bananas. It is a cute little vest that I am test knitting for Knit Picks...but I am a bit dense and the instructions on adding the borders were confusing or I was paying too much attention at all those light up swords, whichever the reason, it didn't get done. Maybe tomorrow, if I don't watch the entire Star Wars saga.


But before I sat and absorbed 2 Stars Wars movies, I was productive, I must have had the force on my side. I made a yuummmmmy, scrumptions cake. I found the recipe at Sara-H's blog, she calls it Spice, but I don't think that is the name of it, it is gingerbread I think, very yummy gingerbread. I followed her instructions exactly with only 2 alterations:


  • I added a cup of chocolate chips: every cake/bread/muffin in this household must have chocolate chips


  • I put 2 tsp of ginger instead of the 1


The kids loved it! Wonderboy had 2 slices and little Benny finished almost 1 entire slice. We still have 1 loaf for tomorrow's breakfast...yummy.

Speaking of the kids, little Wonderboy gave me something today...he obtained the little pendant in Rhinebeck and he was going to give it to me for my birthday, but with all the commotion of the vacation he forgot about it and he just put it away in my bag. I thought he had forgotten about it, but today, he emerged from the basement (they have their play room down there as well as my craft room) and he had this just for me.


He gave it to me and said, "mommy, I took some of your favorite yarn for your gift--do you like it? Now you have 2 necklaces Mom so you can wear one to church and one at home". He melted my heart...he is such a little sweetheart. The little pendant with fine merino chain has become my most cherished piece of jewelry. 

Here is a picture of my little treasures...creating a mess in the kitchen while I made the cake.


Till later my friends...till then, may the Force be with you :). Oh, if you can give me a hint as to what order to watch these movies that would be very, very helpful. I am going crazy trying to figure it out--I have only til the 23rd to watch them free of charge so please tell me. I have watched III, and I.

Scout Swag--I love thee!!

Let me count the ways...I love thee because thy owner hooked me up with some gorgeous handyed yarn for a special secret project...look at the gorgeous colourway-purples, pinks, gray....oooh, so puurty. The colourway is Fetching and she custom dyed it in worsted weight for a special loomy project.



But, the yarn is not all, see Scout hooked me up with--the Namaste Jetsetter Bag. It is big enough to fit a big knitting project (even a hat knitting loom), diapers and wipes in a separate compartment, and even a place for my checkbook and cell phone! If all those qualities were not enough, the color won me over, the moment I saw it, I knew that I "needed" to have one. Go, take a look at the bags and yarns at Scout's Swag store, she has brand new stuff in too--temptress is thy name! Thanks Temptress Scout for hooking me up with a bag that is hip and big enough to be an everyday bag!

PS: If you are expecting a baby or have a baby in diapers, check out this bag--you will love it as a diaper bag :).



Loomy Q & A: Seaming Techniques Videos

*Edited* It appears that the videos had music in them making it difficult to listen to my lovely voice (hahaha!), I have taken the music off. Thank you for letting me know about the music ;).


I was supposed to tackle this question last weekend, but instead, I spent all Saturday babysitting three little kiddos, plus my two, in total 5, 4 of them still in diapers...eeek!  My apologies for being late with the answers delivery.

Our Loomy Question:

I am new to loom knitting and I need help with joining panels. How do I join panels together?

Joining panels is part of the finishing process--and although you may think that once you finished knitting the item that the hard work is done, do not take the seaming process lightly. Joining the panels together is a very important step and I recommend devoting a bit of time to it.

If you do not have a book on finishing techniques, I recommend the only book that was recommended by superb knitter/mentor/friend Mim, "The Knitter's Book of Finishing Techniques", this book will teach you everything you need to know about finishing your garment. You can find it at Michael's too (go get your 50% coupon).

Thank you for sending your Loomy Questions in, keep those looms going!

Comments, Questions, Constructive Criticism always welcome :)

To begin, I will demonstrate how to join two panels with the mattress stitch seam. It produces an invisible seam on the right side--which makes it ideal for many garments.

Mattress Stitch Video

Another important seaming technique is the one where you join two garter stitch edges together. When joining panels, such as blankets, you will encounter that the panels have a garter stitch edge and using the mattress stitch will leave a seam on the wrong side, in this case, use the Garter Stitch Seam.

Garter Stitch Seam Video

The above two videos demonstrate how to join two panels row to row, but how about joining panels that you have to match stitches to rows as when setting a sleeve? or Stitches to stitches as when joining shoulder panels?

Joining Sleeves to Armhole Opening

Joining panels at the shoulder: Shoulder Seaming

The Untitled Post

A MeMe--Joinked it from Mim. It is the perfect post for see, I have something that came in the mail that I have to proofread--can you guess what it is?


But before you leave (cuz, are you really going to stick around to read  MeMe?), I want to let you know about a very special charity project called--The House that Knitter's Built.

The House that Knitter's Built is an effort to benefit the victims of Hurricane Katrina who reside in Pearlington. A small donation can help build a house for families in need. Please go to the link to find out more information about the project. If you make a donation, hop on over to the Purls of Hope blog and they'll sign you up for a little prize. 


Now to the MeMe:



1. Yourself: busy
2. Your boyfriend/girlfriend (spouse): love
3. Your hair: boring
4. Your mother: sick
5. Your Father: lost
6. Your Favorite Item: computer
7. Your dream last night: spelling
8. Your Favorite drink: Propel
9. Your Dream Car: Beetle
10. The room you are in: messy
11. Your Ex: gone
12. Your fear: death
13. What you want to be in 10 years? alive
14. Who you hung out with last night? family
15. What You’re Not? Cook
16. Muffins: nuts
17. One of Your Wish List Items: Ariann
18. Time: fast
19. The Last Thing You Did: folded
20. What You Are Wearing: jeans
21. Your Favorite Weather: summer
22. Your Favorite Book: Notebook
23. The Last Thing You Ate: Tamales
24. Your Life: AWESOME
25. Your Mood: melancholic
26. Your best friend: Hubby
27. What are you thinking about right now? book
28. Your car: Toyota
29. What are you doing at the moment? typing
30. Your summer: gone
31. Your relationship status: happy
32. What is on your TV? HP
33. What is the weather like? FRIGID!
34. When is the last time you laughed? lunch

A wee Baby Bonnet


Instead of working this weekend on something important, I decided to pick up an old UFO and give it another try. I created 2 or 3, or 4 of these little things over the weekend. Each one had something different that didn't exactly work.

I wanted to have a scalloped edge to frame the face so on my first try I loom knitted the bonnet from the front to the back, the results were good, but not good enough, especially since I loom knitted too many lace pattern repeats and the front section was super long.

After a few more tries, success!

The baby bonnet, which I have named: Sweetheart Baby Bonnet was loom knitted on a small gauge knitting loom. I used worsted weight wool (Patons Merino wool). It has a small section of lace that forms a cute scalloped edge around the face.

Here are more pictures of it: sorry that the baby is not real, it will take me at least 9 months to get a real one to pose for the pictures...I'll work on it though, hehehehe.


Other updates: The Anna socks are still on the needles, I am working on sock number 2. I am also working on some other loom knitting patterns and loom knitting tutorials. The Loomy Q & A day will be posted later today after I get my dirty laundry under control.

He loves me, he loves me not, he loves me, he loves me not....


Hubby came bearing gifts today. He came home with the most wonderful birthday present ever! He made it all himself. I am in love!!


It is a little keepsake box.  It is made out of mahogany wood.

He has been wanting to make something for me for the longest time (something other than knitting looms) but he never had any time, there was no time today either, but he decided to put everything else aside just for me.


His question to me: "what are you going to put inside?"


My answer was easy: a small knitting project! It is big enough for 1 skein of yarn (sock yarn, hehehehe) and the little 5" needles I use for my socks.

Malhakita Sam....I love it! Best birthday present :).

Little Lacey Hat: Loom Knitting Pattern


I remember just a few years ago, the idea of knitting lace or cables on a knitting loom were unkown to many of us loom knitters. Now, we can knit cables and we are starting to explore into the world of lace.

Get a little taste of knitting lace on your knitting looms with this little hat. The pattern is perfect for a first time lace project.

In this pattern, you can also try the Picot edge for your brim to make the hat a bit more feminine.

Pattern Specifics:


Knitting Loom: Knitting loom with a peg multiple of 8. A Décor Accents, Child size small gauge knitting loom with 56 pegs was used in sample.

Yarn: 65 yards of heavy worsted wool. Belleza Collection Tesoro was used in sample. Note: You will need more yarn if you are making a bigger hat than the size provided here.

Other: Knitting tool, tapestry needle, 7 stitch/peg markers (or the number the chart will be repeated on your knitting loom)

Skills Knowledge: Single Stitch, Knit stitch, knit 2 together (k2tog), Yarn over (YO)

Size: Pattern is easily adaptable to any knitting loom with a peg multiple of 8.

Size shown:7” diameter and 6.5 inches depth (from cast on edge to top of hat). Recommended for Babies and Toddlers up to 24 months.

Adapt the pattern to a larger hat by simply knitting more pattern repeats. Be sure to keep in mind the stitch multiple when adapting the pattern.

Price: $3.50

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The Saga of the Sexy Socks *edited*

Well, the socks were visited by Mr. Froggy and they got ripped, yep, all but 3 inches. It was painful seeing all that work going to nothing but I like the socks enough to try it again. I mean, there is nothing sexy about baggy, sloppy socks, and sexy is the look of these pair of stockings.


I tried "altering" the pattern with Savannahchik's help (thank you Jodi for coming to my rescue) but the pattern doesn't lend itself to too much altering, and the few stitches that I could alter was not enough.

At the end, I had to change needle sizes 3 times: from a 3 down to a 0 (0s around the ankle area) and even with that much change the ankle is still a bit baggy but not so much--what do you think?


With all the needle alterations, I afraid that I won't have enough yarn to finish the socks. I only got 3 skeins but smaller size needles mean more yarn...eeek. But they are sure looking purrty.


Edited to add: So last night I went to bed and of course, I kept thinking about the socks. Then this morning, I woke up and the solution came to me: knit fewer pattern repeats! Duh! Why didn't it occur to me sooner. I will try with some other yarn color (same brand) that I have around and I will report: I see this as a mission now, I am sure there are other gals out there with skinny ankles like mine.

A Knitting Dilemma: the Sexy Anna Socks


I know, it probably seems that I don't knit, but I do, I have been knitting for a little while on these super sexy knee length Anna socks from the Rowan Magazine #40. My plan was to have them done for Socktoberfest but there was a small delay in my order (ok, my order got lost, eeek!). But, no this post is not going to be about the horror of lost yarn (although it was painful and heart breaking--it was supposed to be my birthday gift to myself!).

I actually need your advice: you see, I don't know what to do. I have knitted to the point that you see in the picture (maybe a few rounds more) but I am seeing something that I really, really dislike. Do you see that little bunching up on the back of my heel--right above where the heel shaping begins? I am not liking it at all. Why is it happening? The pattern doesn't have any shaping for the ankle area which typically, I am assuming is smaller than the calf area on all human beings, the pattern doesn't take that into consideration. I have changed needle size twice already: I started with the #3 that the pattern calls for, then I changed to a size 2 about 2 inches before reaching the heel shaping, once I reached the heel, I realized that the 2 was still going to be too big for my skinny foot, so I went down to a 1.5--the stitches with the 1.5 are nice and dense for the sole of the foot and the lace on the instep area is comfortable.

My question is: should I frog the sock til about 1/2 the calf and change to the size 2 or even the 1.5? I am loving the sock but I am not a fan of frogging you think it looks really bad? Should I frog, or should I keep going and see how it looks once the needles are out?

Loomy Q&A

Question #1 has to do with creating flat panels: The question reads:

I can't seem to get started on flat single-sided knitting on a board or round loom. *Is* there a way to make a truly flat piece (non-curling) that is single-sided? Or do I have to resign myself to a knitting board and double-sided knitting?If one *can* make a single-sided flat piece, I would like to make a simple scarf. I need to know how to cast on, how to do the stitches, and how to cast off.

You can definitely create a flat panel that does not curl on a single sided rake/round loom. To prevent the curling, I recommend knitting a garter stitch edge at each side of the item as well as at the beginning and end of the item.


We will break this section into small parts: casting on for a flat panel, knitting on the flat panel, and removal of the flat panel.

The Garter Stitch on a knititng loom consists of the following:

Row 1: Knit

Row 2: Purl

Repeat Row 1 & 2

Section 1: casting on for a flat panel. We will be using 12 pegs on any size loom, for my example, I am using the small blue knifty knitter knitting loom.

I recommend using a cast on that provides a nice tight edge like the one provided by either the Cable Cast on or the Chain Cast on (click on the links to view the file/mini-movie). 

Section 2: Knitting on your flat panel. When knitting on your flat panel, you have a choice of creating a chain like edge at each side by slipping the first stitch of each row. Or you can knit the stitch. The choice is up to you. I like to slip the first stitch, but it is all personal preference.

The instructions below are for a panel of 12 stitches:

Row 1, 3, 5: Knit all 12 stitches

Row 2, 4: Purl all 12 stitches

Row: 6: Knit all 12 stitches

Row 7: Purl 3 stitches, knit 6 stitches, purl 3 stitches

Repeat Row 6 & 7 for the desired length of the item

Repeat Rows 1-5.

The garter stitch edging of the first 3 stitches and last 3 stitches will prevent the item from curling at the sides. The first and last 5 rows will prevent it from curling at the ends

Section 3: Binding off the flat panel. Binding off is the procedure of taking the knitted item off the knitting loom.

View the mini-video below to see all the steps to create a flat panel.'s a secret: Invitation to Knitty Gritty as guest designer!!! Woot!

I have a secret to tell....ssshhh...are you ready, come closer: little me has been invited to be a guest designer on the Knitty Gritty show!!! I am at the edge of my seat, sweating and hyperventilating! I have known for a few days but I couldn't tell anyone--it was just too "unreal" that they accepted me and my little looms to come to the studio. I will be meeting the superb Vickie, that is if I don't faint and end in a comma at the hospital from hitting my head on the floor!


{Knitting Looms}

I will be demonstrating loom knitting and a really cool fair isle project. I am flying out at the beginning of December to tape the show which will air sometime next year (probably in the fall).

Here, you can watch the little video I prepared as a mini-demo about me and me looms...don't laugh, I had to film it all on my own, while the kids kept knocking on the door (the video was somewhat like my interview for the producer--talk about feeling the heat!!).

I am so nervous...I have a few days to calm my nerves and stop squealing from excitement. This is such a huge thing for us loom knitters, our craft will be featured in such an important show: in the words of Neil Armstrong adapted to knitting looms: One small step for me, one giant leap for the loom knitting community.

NYC Trip Highlights


Our trip was fabulous! Wonderboy *loved* everything about New York, the buildings, the food, the hotels, the Statue of Liberty and of course Grandma and uncle Edy. Benny was a bit homesick and every night she asked for her couch, blanket and of course her Dora show, despite her homesickness, she enjoyed being around Grandma and her uncle.

Our trip highlights:

Seeing Grandma:


Our night out to see Les Miserables: kids stayed at the hotel with Grandma and uncle while hubby and I ran out to see the play on Saturday evening. I had seen it back when I lived in NY and the second time around was as good as the first one. Hubby enjoyed it too. It was a great date: one of our best ones ever! Malhakita Sammer.


Coming back from the play: it was great seeing the following:

Dsc02408  Dsc02401

Kids' favorite places: FAO Schwarz, Big Apple Circus, Central Park Zoo, Statue of Liberty

Dsc02328_2  Dsc02395

Dsc02339 Dsc02370

And lots of other pictures of our travels in the next slideshow: we visited the American Museum of Natural History, where Wonderboy chose to have a family date in the Reptile exhibition, lots of Central Park playgrounds, and the Toys 'R Us Ferris Wheel in Times Square. We went to the MET museum on Monday but it was closed (could have prevented this if I had visited their website, duh), after finding out that it was closed we headed to the U.S.S. Intrepid only to find out that it was closed too--again, could have find out if I had visited their website. It is okay though, it gives us something to look forward in our next trip to NYC--that along with seeing the Phantom of the Opera.