Monday, February 11, 2008

Hat Attack

My binary cable hat for Hat Attack 2008 is DONE! As of last night (Sunday) at 9:15pm. I actually had stuff that needed to be done this weekend, so I could not knit full-time on this. I also spent way too much time doubting the pattern and my skills.

The designer did an excellent job - everything worked - and I learned a new way of looking at patterns. Really! I went back to my lace knitting this morning (got one more set done) - and realized that I could now relate the pattern to what was actually happening in the yarn. That insight is directly because of knitting on the binary hat. I spent so much time examining the cables and comparing them to the pattern that I must have learned something! Whoda thunk it!

This is Brown Sheep Lamb's Pride Worsted - in amethyst. Uses less than a skein. I think the color is perfect for it, the rich hue adds depth to the cables IMHO. The designer specified this yarn specifically because it produces \| stitches rather than \/ (balanced?) stitches. You can really see that in this hat - the vertical legs of the stitches in the cable create a beautiful line that emphasizes the cable's shape. Good work, Designer! I learned so much!!!

And this morning I went back to my lace knitting.

I'll get the hat into the mail today or tomorrow. I'm thinking tomorrow since it's cold and our branch post office closes in a couple of hours. (I am just getting warm from my trip in to work this morning!) My assassin has said that her weapon is in the mail, so I'll be out soon. No rush to kill off my victim. I finished what I wanted to do - and learned so much more than I expected. Good experience!

Saturday, February 09, 2008

Not my original plan

First lace scarf
Originally uploaded by fiberbrarian
Starting on a knitted lace scarf last night was not my plan. The night before Hat Attack? Start a new project???

I did two bumps last night. The rest I did this morning, waiting for my courage (and the pancakes) to kick in so I could head out into the blizzard. Since I live in town, the blizzard is not too bad -- just horribly cold. (-6'F, windchill -33. winds at 26mph gusting to 34mph)

This lace scarf is SOOOO fun! Now I sort of understand how people can get addicted to lace.

I found this in the Web catalog ( The pattern is from Misti Alpaca ( Here's the link to Asphodel Lace Scarf (

This scarf pattern tells you to knit the two ends first (this is 5/9th of one end - there will be 9 bumps when it's completed). Then turn the bumpy side down and pick up stitches from the smooth end and begin knitting the scarf. It's the scarf pattern that boggles my mind - it's covered in little lacy stars!

BTW: the flash on the camera really ruined the subtle coloring of this yarn. I hadn't even seen the striping until I looked at the flash picture. The color is quiet - subtle - Anne Black - includes black and purple and navy and bronze/copper. Gorgeous.

I was going to take a picture of the blizzard to show you what a blizzard can look like in town - and I actually stopped on my way into the building, and then realized I would have to take off my mittens. I didn't even get to the part about having to take the camera out of its bag, aim and focus, etc. The thought of taking my mittens off stopped me cold. So - think about horizontal fog...whapping at you...and instead of that misty dewy feeling substitute a sharp angular biting sensation. That's the Cliff Note version of a blizzard in town.

Seriously, I had planned to come in really early to get the Hat Attack pattern. Hearing the wind that came in about 4am made me think that I'd wait a bit. Then listening to the radio - a sheriff from a little town up north called in asking for help. He asked that the radio broadcast a message to the woman who had been stranded for three hours in a ditch somewhere, with low fuel and a now-dead cell phone: "Hang on. We're trying to get to you." He called later to say the same thing to a man who was stuck (except that he had a full gas tank). Much later, or so it seemed, he called in to say they'd gotten the lady, and they were on the way to the man. Visibility could be measured in feet.

Seriously. You don't mess with blizzards. You take Mother Nature very seriously.

Okay - off to Hat Attack!

(One more thing: the KnitPicks ( catalog references 'doing cables' tutorials on their Web site. I need to let my assassin know - she's new at cables.)

Friday, February 08, 2008

BLOOMING impatien - feb. 6, 2008

impatien - feb. 6, 2008
Originally uploaded by fiberbrarian
Spring is springing eternal around here! I was hoping these cuttings from last summer's garden might survive through the winter, giving me a little bit of life in the house. I had no thought about them blooming! What a happy surprise! Especially with the blizzard blowing in tonight!

Yup. Blizzard tonight and tomorrow. Why now? I am sure it's because the Hat Attack pattern will be released tomorrow morning. (I'm pretty sure that the weather is based around my calendar! LOL)

My victim is in Michigan. (KNITTED HAT victim in case that sentence just set off some Patriot Act software in the sky.) Not a good sign when I signed on to Ravelry and my victim had already found me and sent a note. But at least she's my victim - someone else has to worry about her as an assassin! MY assassin is in Texas, and I got a note from her, too. These seem like lovely people - but all's fair in love and Hat Attack!

I'm thinking that I might contact the GF Air Force Base to see if they could deliver my hats. I know we don't have the same US Post Office access as the big cities. (Someone on the list said that MPLS has 24-hour service at the air port! Which is why I'm thinking we should bring in the air force. They're flying around anyway. What's a stop in Michigan?! LOL)

Okay. Back to the flower and good calm thoughts. Seriously, the plants are waking up. I've got a little rubber plant that's been sitting for a month or two - suddenly it's growing like mad. I look out the window and do not see what they see/sense. But I trust them, so I think we will have spring this year!