Sunday, December 28, 2014

Christmas Knitting

It's been so long since I posted about my knitting life - there have been so many other things happening and so little time to really blog about anything. Things are finally slowing down, and I'm headed back to Texas tomorrow, so now's the perfect time to share my recent projects.

With the holidays this past week, I found myself making lots of holiday knits for my family. The first was for my sister. When I was home over Thanksgiving, my sister loved my Temple Cats hat, and casually mentioned wanting one in purple and blue.  Luckily the LYS had a Black Friday Sale and I was able to get the yarn I needed for a great price.

The yarn I chose is Cascade Yarns Elysian, a nice blend of 60/40 Merino/Acrylic. It's really soft and worked up great, although it was a bit splitty at times. I decided to use the purple for the base color, so the cats could really pop. And I also added the aqua stripes to the top because I thought it would add nice accent. She really liked it :) 

My sister has a birthday three days after Christmas, and I had extra yarn, so I decided to knit her a pair of mittens to go with the hat as a birthday gift. I reversed the colors and found that I really liked the cats against the blue. The patter was completely charted from scratch, with only a basic mitten pattern to give me stitch numbers. She has really long fingers, and thus they turned out super long. But working on these really made me a colorwork master! 

When I asked my brother what he wanted for Christmas, he replied "A black hat would be nice". Of course he chose black - the one color that I didn't have wool in my stash. Luckily the LYS is five blocks down the street and they had exactly what I needed. I have since lost the label, but it was a nice super wash, aran weight wool. I paired it with some leftover handspun alpaca for the brim (originally used for this hat) and then I found some simply soft here in my KS stash that I used to pair it with for the top. Considering that I improvised the design, he really likes it and I know it will get good use. 

As for me, it's not winter in Kansas without a nice warm scarf. I finally finished my Scotland scarf a few weeks back, and have been wearing it everywhere since. The yarn is a nice angora blend and so warm and scushy. I am really pleased with this scarf because it was also my "movie theater scarf". I took it with me to four different movies (Plus a couple of knit club days) and only had eight mistakes through it all. I learned that I can knit basic in the dark, which is a huge plus for me. I definitely plan on taking more projects to movies from now on. 

Weekly Inspirations:
Art: On my trip back home last week I stopped in Fort Worth. I was lucky enough to see some amazing art by really famous artists at The Fort Worth Modern, The Kimbell Museum , and the Amon Carter Museum. Seeing works by Georgia O'Keefe, Keith Herring, Paul Gauguin, Picasso and the likes was really inspiring. 
Food: Although I didn't get good photos, I made some really good Italian Chicken Panini's last week for my family and even my dad liked them!
Knitting: I am dying to cast on more socks after reading so many posts about socks the past few weeks. Specifically after reading Kiwiyarns Knits post about her year in socks (thanks Andi for sharing) I have so many lovely yarns to try out also. 
Life: I start driving back to Texas from Kansas tomorrow, to finish up the last 2 months of my residency. I am ready to get back into painting, what with a couple of shows coming up. When I get back, I will of course share my new works with you all.

I hope the New Year finds you making happy, healthy resolutions and finding new adventures in knitting and life. I know that 2014 has been so life changing, I can only imagine what 2015 will be like.


Wednesday, December 24, 2014

...and a happy new year!

I hope you and yours are having a wonderful holiday season! I'm lucky enough to spend it back in Kansas. Where ever you are this season remember to have a good time and stay safe and warm.

From my blog to your's, Merry Christmas!


Friday, December 12, 2014

Share All the Things Friday - Etsy Edition

So I'm not going to lie, I have kinda been waiting all week to post just so I can do a "Share all the things Friday" post. If you haven't heard of this, it's an amazing topic that has been started by the lovely Truly Myrtle. If you haven't checked her's out, you should.

Mostly out of bordem, I found myself spending several evenings on Etsy exploring the knitting related shops and lusting over all the things that I only wish I could afford. I figured, why not share them all with my fellow bloggers as well, so that you can do some drooling.

Photo (C) SevenYaks on Etsy

All I want for Christmas is one of these gorgeous spindles courtesy SevenYaks. All of her spindles are simply stunning and so light weight. The worl is made of cut acrylic, and the shafts are made of wood. I can only imagine how much of a dream it is to watch these snowflakes spin round and round. 

Photo (C) TurtleMade on Etsy

On the not of spindles, check out what TurtleMade is doing! It may seem cheesy, but she is using a 3D printer to make drop spindles. The colors are kinda wild, but isn't it such a fun idea? I almost want to try a Turkish spindle just so I can buy one of these.  And if these don't float your boat, she has lots of yarn too!

Photo (C) Fashion Touch Supplies on Etsy

In the realm of yarns, I have yet to buy any off of Etsy (Yes, it's a sin, I know!). But I have found lots of dyers that I wish to purchase from. The first is Fashion Touch Supplies.  The color above is the one that I discovered first. Maybe it's the autumn colors that drew me in? This yarn is 200 yards of 100% pure virgin wool and the photo has me wanting to reach out and squish it.  And if the yarn isn't enough, she has lots of pretty rovings, beads and more!

Photo (C) WoolSilkLace

Of all the shops I found, I think this is the one I am going to cave and order from soonest. How can you not fall in love with this absolutely stunning 2 color striping sock yarn from WoolSilkLace? The yarn base is 75% merino, 20% Nylon and 5% Stellina ( a blend of polyacryl and polyester). And if this colorway doesn't have you drooling, then you should check out some of her others. They range from mystical to practical and everywhere in between. 

Photo (C) Heidishoppe

My final love for the day is these crazy, silly cat bowls from Heidishoppe.  Who wouldn't want to store and use their yarn in on of these? They're so silly and fun and would really brighten up any knitter or cat lover's day! And for the non-knitter, she also has mugs, cups, banks and more!

Weekly Inspirations:

Knitting: It's official. I have too many projects on my needles. Two scarves (lost in transit and the Scotland Angora), a gift hat, my sweater AND a sculpture project. I haven't had this many in a LONG time. Right now, the gift hat is taking priority....
Art: I've met some really great local artists here in Texas. If you're interested, you should check out: Jennifer Christy , Miriam at Wyle Soul Photography , Scott McDermottNancy Hampton Elliott
Food:  This week I made my absolute favorite soup recipe: Italian Chicken and Veggie Soup. My mom discovered it a few years back and I have been obsessed ever since. 
Life:  In exactly a week I will begin my 2 day drive back to Kansas for the holidays. I am dreading it (I can't knit and drive!) but also looking forward to the time to think and figure out what my next step is.

I hope you are all having a wonderful week and that the weekend finds you full of fun and relaxation. I think I will be painting a lot, but what else is new.


Sunday, December 7, 2014

Knitting Artist - Holiday Sale!

Happy December friends! I should have posted this last week, but life has been getting away from me.

I am having a Holiday Sale at my Etsy Shop: The Knitting Artist.

From now until next Sunday, Dec 14th, you can get 20% off any item in my shop. Just use the code SBSAT at checkout. 

What can you get ? 

Copies of my first 'zine: Words and Sttiches, November 2014. Each issue comes with beautiful images of my art paired with a poem. Also included is knitting lessons, a free dishcloth pattern and a simple veggie recipe.

Fine Art Prints of my Gouache (similar to watercolor) paintings. And believe me, you will never know it's not the original. Printed on beautiful somerset velvet watercolor paper, the color and vibrancy will magically transport you to my imaginary worlds. 

One (or many) of my handpainted cards. Right now I am offering just simple knit stitch designs, but I am hoping to add some more abstract (and maybe holiday themed if I have time this week) designs. Why not send a special message on a special card? 

So, why not pop on over and take advantage of the chance to own a part of me and my art while you can save some money. And don't forget - all the proceeds go straight back to me as an artist, which means you are essentially helping me to keep on creating and doing what I love.