Thursday, January 31, 2008

calling all knittahs, spinnahs, and techies

Hi folks! I am trying to come up with a structure for a yarn club for Sereknity, and would like to bounce my ideas off you folks and take advantage of your collective creativity. My idea is for this to NOT be solely a sock club (get it? sole? ok...moving on...very little sleep last night...) and I was thinking of it being a yearly subscription shipping every 2 months, with various payment options. I want to incorporate all the yarns I currently offer and while there will be at least one sock pattern, I'd like to have patterns for other items for the sock yarns as well.
First -- I need help on the name! I'm thinking Skein Winder Club, but that name doesn't reflect the Sereknity moniker in any way, but I don't want anything corny like "Happy Club" or whatever...SUGGESTIONS, PLEASE???
Second -- Does that structure sound enticing to you? What else would you like to see?
Third -- I'd need a design or two. There's yarn (or fiber)in it for ya. And, when a year has passed, the rights to self publication. Or, I could publish it through the website with you receiving payment for each copy sold. I'm in it for the club pattern, not to make $$ off your design, and I love promoting my friends. I'm hoping to get to a point where I really can!
Last, I want a new look and logo for the company, and am going to start poking around on etsy, but if one of you wonderful peoples has a talent for graphic design or photography and you really, really like free yarn and fiber and/or a little scratch, give me a shout!
Thanks in advance -- you guys rock.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008


...eyes, not photos, I hope. I have been diligently plugging away at the site revamping pictures and adding or deleting colors. I think it looks SOOOO much better. (Don't you?) I added a new category, as promised, for kettle dyed yarns. I love these! The two newest are Caramel Macchiato and Sweet Baby James (I do so love me some James Taylor. Been wanting to do this one since I went to his amazing concert in August!).

The blue was so very hard to capture, even with the help of photo shop, and when I bounce form one to the other of our many computers in the house, it is a titch different (hey, look at me, making words!). Frustrating. It is gorgeous, tho -- I am so pleased with it. I hope to dye some up for my next pair of socks, but these will head to the shop tomorrow, along with the Caramel M. I have so sorely neglected the Etsy shop lately. If you do want to lay claim before I list them, just give me a shout!
My next big task will be to build the fiber portion of the Sereknity site, which means lots of Photoshop work and futzing with my shop system. I KNOW there are easier ways to do things that what I have been doing, but computers are not nearly as intuitive for me as knitting and coloring. I get so frustrated with the time wasted on the NOT KNOWING. UG. I'll get there! I have so many grand ideas for the site, and I am anxious to get them going, but I need to streamline things for it all to work. Again, I'll get there. (I will get there, I will get there...I WILL GET THERE!....)
Wanna see something pretty? Sure you do...

Anastasia in Crush. I won't claim the pattern has been a breeze for me. It is actually quite straightforward, with nice charts, but I am doing these 2 at a time on magic loop, and, at times, a yarn over is required at the END of a row (ie. where the needle stops before jumping from front to back). This can be done, but I very definitely forgot on at least one occasion to grab this yarn over, causing a faulty stitch count and much confusion. Also, being in my usually distracted state (I think while watching and chatting at the kid's karate class) I managed to reverse direction on my nice little lacy spiral for one round, giving my lovely line a protruding bubble. Again, thanks to my usually distracted knitting, I am becoming quite good at the drop-down-six-rows-and-reknit-on itty-bitty-dpns technique. Why six rows? It took that long for me to realize that, even though the socks were for me and the mistake would be hidden in my shoes, it would grate on me for all eternity. And thus perfectionism rears its ugly head, but, thankfully, the results will be much nicer.

Monday, January 28, 2008


At long last, the sleeves are done, but, as predicted, I had to rip about an inch from both front and back of the sweater to make the armholes fit. I'm going to give the sweater a light blocking today and bring it to "knitting practice" on Wednesday night. I have never seamed a sleeve. I love me a nice top-down raglan with it's happy little kitchener stitch under the arm. But, being the technique junkie I am, I have to get over this fear of mine of seaming. Besides, kind of necessary unless I want to wear this thing as a sweater and not a vest with matchy-matchy armwarmers...although... (Did you notice how close the stripes on the sleeves are, until you get to the top? Just in case, here is another view. Really hope the shift doesn't drive me.)

That being (nearly) done, I, of course, had to cast-on for my next project in waiting -- Mr. Greenjeans (hereby to be known as Mr. Bluejeans).

After a bit of debate, I settled on the Med. This won't leave me with much in the way of ease, according to specs, but I will never have enough yarn if I go to the large. As it is, I'm on a wing and a prayer. My plan is, should I run out, I'll pick up a darker blue in a similar wool and knit 1/2 the cable section on both cuffs and body in that. The ribbed button band will be decided later. I figure Peace Fleece would be a good match for this yarn. I am using a somewhat local wool -- Walpole Wool -- produced by the woman who ran the rescue from which I got my Lil' Big Dog, Chewie. It is rough, but not scratchy, and delightfully woolly. I made a swatch and EVEN WASHED IT (it's ok, breathe...) and then gave it the ultimate test. I stuck it in my bra. If I wear it there for hours and forget it is there, I am good to go. Yup. No itchies. It did soften up a bit with washing, and will be long wearing and durable, I am quite sure. The perfect jeans sweater.
Other news? Well, one wouldn't know it, but I did do quite a bit of dyeing last week, but nothing new made it to the shop -- my buckets have been well pillaged by local knitters. I did manage to get pictures of the new colorways, tho, and am diligently working on the website to get these added. Trying, anyway! I am not a tech girl, so it is a tedious task for me, and, unfortunately, too much time at the computer finds my mind and mouse wandering in Ravelry and many many blogs. FOCUS WOMAN! Like I said, it is a work in progress.

Friday, January 18, 2008

The sweater that won't be knit

Ok, so, I'm really really trying to get Poppy (here and here, as well) done. I want to have it to wear for SPA. I've had to put it aside for soooo many other things, holidays being the biggest culprit, but now, with all clear, for some reason I just. can't. get. it. done. One sleeve left people! ONE SLEEVE! I've been putting in a row here or there, and this morning thought I was finally past the increase section until...
wait a minute...
how many stitches should be here???
This is why I was an English major -- can't count. Way too many cast-on stitches. UG.
The little girl is home from school on day two with conjunctivitis. (Docs didn't call in her script until mid afternoon! Don't get me going on that frustration.) I'm going to take her to see "The Waterhorse," and am hoping ot get some knitting in there. Problem is, I just KNOW the sleeves aren't going to fit into the armholes. Sigh.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008


(please forgive the horrid picture quality of this post -- can't find my good camera. grrr)

So, Cowgirl sock number one is finally finished (well, except for grafting the toe -- shhhh!). Looks great, huh? Look again.

Seriously? WTF? This sock is BUTT UGLY LUMPY off the needles. Is it me? I was confused on a few points of the pattern, but slogged on, and am wondering if this is the problem. Plus, my short row heel is fraught with holes. Good thing I am happy with the colorway. I HAVE TO cast on #2 today or they will never get done, especially since I cast this on.

See my itty bitty toes?? I don't know why I have avoided learning toe up socks for so long -- casting on was super easy using this tutorial on These wil grow up to be Anastasia socks. The colorway is a new one for Sereknity -- Crush. LOVE IT!! It is a kettle dye, so it has a much more random and subtle tone-on-tone type patterning. I've been very much into the kettle lately (I died up some more Crush, Pharaoh's Gold, Rock Lobster, and Martian in various fibers). I want to perfect the colorways so I can have a complete line of tonal dyes in addition to the hand paints. Gotta work in more blues and neutrals. I am in a bit of a rut insofar as what to dye for the handpaints. Once I dye up colorway, it quickly becomes old hat to me, and I just don't know what to make! Speak up and tell me your favorites, please! I have some Cowgirl and Blue Hawaii in the shop, and some Pumpkin Patch, Lilacs in Bloom and a few others to list. HELP!!!

Thursday, January 10, 2008

C'est finis!

She is beautiful, no? Seriously -- so much better in person than my terrible self-shot photos. I love this hat! I'll try to get hubby to get a better pic of me in it for the Ravelry page. I finished it up at home last night, not at the ManchVegas "knitting practice", because, well, after getting home Wed. nights from running the Brownie troop, I'm done, spent, and don't want to budge from my couch. Next week -- I promise. Seriously!!
Also as promised, the mitts. Sister-in-law, she approved, so they are a go for mitt #2. I have recovered from my initial hatred of the color scheme. Once the orange was added to the top, it sort of worked a bit better for me. And they are warm. Soooo -- onward and upward. I'll cast on mitt 2 sometime tonight if I can fit it in between meetings and karate class. (

Monday, January 07, 2008

Holday knits = Heather 5, Time 2

Yep, of the 7 planned and hoped for knits, 5 were completed (1 of the five admittedly after the Dec. 25th deadline, but done nonetheless) and two are still in process. The R2D2 hat is presently being worn -- often I am told, and Jason received his Skully hat on Christmas morn when he made me one happy big sister by staying at my house Christmas Eve so he could wake here and be a part of the joy with the Boy and Girl. I had also completed my mother-in-law's mitts (no final pic, darn it) and my lil sis' scarf, seen here on the gorgeous recipient herself.

she, as it turned out, spent the holiday in Aruba with her boyfriend and his fam, which, if I had planned better, would have meant I could have put her scarf on the back-burner and finished the others, but hey, I also could have started in August if we're gonna get picky. (hello, McFly) Slightly belated were my mother's Loving Hands mitts, also modeled by the Gorgeous One, but I did make mom a pair of earrings to tide her over.

Those not completed were the Mosaic Mitts from the 2006 Holiday Issue of IK. I forgot to snap a pic today, and I find the color choices to be a bit lacking, but Sinead is happy with tem, so I will proceed. These are for my sis-in-law and are now nearly 1/2 done, and another pair of mitts -- Smocked Gauntlets -- for my hubby's gran. The real problem here is I AM SICK OF KNITTING MITTS. So what is a girl to do? Cast on a new project and work on it obsessively until completed. I present to you, Gretel.

Oh, how I love her! I began knitting her cable portion the other day with company over and misread a bit of the crossing instructions, so there is a mistake in a crossing row, but I did the same thing all the way around, and since I had already tinked back a number of times due to distracted mis-knitting -- and no, the Mike's had nothing to do with it -- I decided to leave the weird row. I know it is there, but I can live with it, and I will definately be knitting this hat again, so it is a learning experience, right?. Right. (Right?!?) I am knitting her in some lovely Patons SWS given me by Gina, which makes the knitting even nicer, knowing the yarn was from such a great friend. It is lovely to work with, as well, although predictable a bit splitty for cable work, being a single ply, but the final fabric and the sheen and smooth softness is more that worth any trouble. The colors blend so beautifully as well. I am just tickled.
In fact, she is calling me. I will leave you now with some lovely pics of the proud Boy and Girl with their snowman, Alvin. And yes, that is a handspun, handknit scarf around his neck. Lovely tho it may be, it was torture to wear -- horribly scratchy Border Leicester blend spun and knit before I knew better. I think it suits him just fine.

Good-bye 2007...

...and don't let the door hit you on the arse on your way out. For me, 2007 was one of the most difficult years I have had in recent memory, and I am happy to see it done. Enough said on that.
I enter the new year with renewed hope and strength, and the knowledge gained. Things I know? Well, for one, I know the value of great friends, and I am blessed with many (man, I love you guys -- and I know you know who you are!). I also know that I am strong, and have learned once again to have faith -- in myself and the universe. 2007 also saw the start of Sereknity in earnest, and even with great struggles, a swiftky turning learning curve and some certain mistakes, it has done well, and I look forward to an even better year. I've re-dedicated myself to my family and my children and our home, anxious to remove the clutter and chaos that holds us back. (I've joined Fly Lady. I used this program once before and it is fabulous. I'm ready to take control again and even cleared off the top of the refrigerator!) As a knitter, I am also excited to find new challenges. I am now in love with stranded knitting and want to conquer lace. Finding time for spinning is a priority as well. Knitting Daily recently said it best -- I feel Fearless. I've been through fire and come out scorched, but like a farmer may burn a field, I feel ready for new growth.
Thank you my friends for sticking with me and putting up with me. I promise to be much less of a pain in the ass this year. (oh, and the holiday knitting recap is already being written, so stay tuned...)