Sunday, August 29, 2010

batwing lace bookmark

My first design! With thanks to Barbara G. Walker for her fabulous books, especially Charted Knitting Designs: a third treasury of knitting patterns.  I'm working on another one with a peak and a tassel.  I've made a pattern for this batwing lace bookmark which you can find here.  I've become a bookmark knitting maniac.  Guess what ya'll are getting for Christmas this year, family.  That's right...books.  With a little something to mark your place.
I've made 7 bookmarks so far out of one ball of Crystal Palace Yarns Mini Mochi, and still have enough left for at least 3 more.  This pattern is the first lace I've knit where patterned stitches are included on both sides (yarn overs, increases and decreases).  The goal is to become confident enough to knit the Pretty as a Peacock Shawl.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

watchers

Our garden is filled with faces. I like to think of them as guardians of our little patch of earth. They watch from every corner, and are sometimes unexpected. We've found some of them at garden shops, like Wild Birds, Unlimited (Moai, and Lion head). Some were gifts from friends, others found at yard sales. They have all gathered in our yard to watch over us, much like the legend of the Green Man.  Here are pictures of some of the inanimate (with one animate) faces in our garden.
From Garden
From Garden
From Garden
From Garden
From Garden
From Garden
From Garden
From Garden
From Garden
From Garden

Sunday, August 15, 2010

mark my words

I am easing myself back into the habit of knitting every day.  I've had 5 unfinished projects sitting in their bags since February.  Is it a coincidence that I stopped knitting when I bought this imac?  I think not.  I've poked in those bags, and knitted a row or two here and there, but have become bored.  It took something fun and small to get the feeling of passion I have for the craft to resurface.  I'm crazy about knitting lace.  In the last week, I've knitted three bookmarks out of a ball of Mini Mochi sock yarn.  I think I can knit 10 bookmarks from one little ball.
From knitting
I bought the yarn last year at Fiber Art, Inc.  Knitting a bookmark is a great way to practice a lace pattern.  I can make one in just a couple of hours. I love the way the subtle color changes work into the patterns so that each bookmark is completely different.

I have two books with fantastic charts and designs for lace patterns. One is Charted Knitting Designs by Barbara G. Walker, first published in 1972. Her series is a must have for any serious knitter. The other is Vogue Knitting, a 1985 edition. Though both books are far from new, they will never be obsolete.

So, I've got my pencil and graph paper, and I'm designing new bookmarks to make. The ones I made first are from patterns I found on Ravelry. I'm excited to design my own. If I had the time, I'd love to make a ton of bookmarks and painted library related tshirts to sell on Etsy.
From Dragon's Orchid Garden
Here are pictures of the finished bookmarks.
From knitting
From knitting
I decided not to starch them. I like the feel of the soft merino wool just the way it is.

Friday, August 13, 2010

tgif blooms

Yeah, it's Friday.  I'm working tomorrow.  Our library is open 7 days a week, so some Saturdays and Sundays are work days for me.  But tomorrow, I work with two of my favorite people, Michelle and Annamae, so it will be a good day.  I decree it.

It's mid-summer in central Florida, and it's been rainy (even more than usual).  That means rampant growth of not just the stuff we want to grow, but the weeds and the fungi and the algae.  Pulling weeds for most people is a chore.  For me, it's therapeutic.  Algae takes a pressure washer and that's the hubby's job.  He likes it, and takes it to the max by pressure washing anything that's not moving.  Watch out, Caliope!

Orchids in bloom right now include these beauties...
From orchids
From orchids
From orchids
From orchids
All of them have captions with their names, which you can see if you click on the picture. The names just go to show that you can't judge the color they will be by the name, especially if you buy them when they're not blooming. The beautiful pink vanda is named " v. kultan blue x dr. anek"...and it's very very pink. I was hoping for blue, but I guess the "x" - means it's crossed with something that makes it pink. The lc. blue dynasty is a very pale lavender with a purple lip and yellow throat. Again, not BLUE! Blue flowers are my favorite, and I'll keep looking for them.

More from the garden are these pictures of our "Voodoo Forest", which now has 19 voodoo lilies in it. I foresee a time when we'll have to dig them up and plant them away from the house as they get bigger (and smellier). Even the one that bloomed for the first time this spring, sprouted the tree like form. They divide and multiply (and possibly conquer, if you don't give some away now and then).
From Garden
From Garden
From Garden
This Hoya smells like chocolate. Yum.