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Location: lake placid, florida

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

i came, i saw, i bohused

resistance is futile, i must knit a bohus sweater (or two).

but first, a word on madrona. the madrona fiber arts retreat is an exquisite experience. attending madrona is like winning sperbowl tickets if you are a football fan. or the world cup if you are a soccer fan.

the sheraton tacoma is a wonderful venue for madrona. it has all sorts of nooks and crannies for knitters and spinners to gather and hang out. and coffee and water stations all over the place.

the market this year was FABULOUS! too many temptations. let's just say i am no longer a socks that rock virgin and leave it at that.

sheila and michael ernst had a booth for the first time, as did karen campbell.
my room-mate, denise is just as sweet as she was last year :-)

first order of business. check in early, so you can get a fridge and micro. handy for leftovers from dinner. everywhere you eat, the portions are so huge (and cheap) that you have plenty for lunch the next day :-) galanga is divine, and close. gateway to india is a 10 minute drive, deliscious!!!

thanks francine for leading us to nirvana!

my first class was on thursday. susanna hansson, lapland hand garments -the mittens from rovaniemi.

let me just start by saying, if you get a chance to take a class from susanna - run- do not walk to sign up. her classes are a perfect blend of historic background, knitting content, knitted samples, and teacher prep. susanna is the consummate teacher and speaker.

on to rovaniemi. rovaniemi is a town in northern finland, close to the arctic circle. this techique is a twist on intarsia in the round. susanna and her friend lene collaborated on this class. lene will be teaching it in scandanavia.

first we learned the technique with cascade 220 and larger needles.

then we each got to pick our own colors of satakieli. i chose red, blue, green and gold. the colors of the flag of finland :-)

the technique reminds me of bobbin lace, each of the colored yarn stitches gets it's own length of yarn, and is wrapped into a small butterfly hank, then placed on a long straight needle in the order of knitting. this keeps the small yarn amounts from tangling, and makes it easy to see which one to knit next.

all the knitters in the class were experienced, we all had a great time! it was fun to see all the wristlets together, no one chose the same color combination.

at the end of the day, susanna told us we are the only 19 people on this continent who know the technique! quite an exclusive club :-)

lucky for me that karen's two swans yarn had plenty of satakieli to tempt me. i chose black, cherry, gold and pine green to knit a pair of mittens. on size 0000 dpns that ought to keep me busy for a while...

on to sweden. friday was susanna and bohus stickning.
o m g - the samples were too too luscious for words! you really must feel the yarn that solveig dyes to appreciate it. the merino angora blend is so fine, and soft, a pure pleasure to knit with. not splitty at all.
and the colors!!!

the bohus story is fascinating. a female triumph. lucky for us, so much documentation still exists!

we knit the blue shimmer wristlet. yum yum yum.

saturday was m*rta stina. let's just say m*rta stina translates from the swedish as "i am cursing you from my mouldy swedish grave" and leave it as that, shall we?

don't get me wrong, her coverlet designs were stunning, and she was waaayyy before her time, design speaking.

but the knitting technique described in class. torture.
saturday was a small blogger lunch with me, denise, ryan and tmk, kim, jessica, rebecca and peggy, marti, janine, and katie (blogless). i vented my frustrations on them.

as janine so succinctly put it, "how do they know how someone who died over 100 years ago held her yarn? " excellent point.

rebecca and peggy talked me into playing hookie for the afternoon it wasn't hard.

so i sat with them spinning on their beautiful betty roberts wheels, and experimented with different ways to hold my yarn til i came up with something that worked for me.
i'l have dd take photos when i get home and post them.

the 12 years of catholic school guilt set in, and i spent the rest of the weekend trying to avoid the teacher... the gal i know who was sitting next to me in class later told me there was much swearing going on all afternoon, and most everyone was simply knitting fair isle style by the end of the day.

the best part of the whole weekend was seeing all my friends again, and meeting ryan (and tmk), kim, kerry, and sheila for the first time in person, although we've been virtual friends for years!!!!!

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

the queen is back on the throne

er, rather the wooly board.

besides the sleeve setback, queen anne's lace was a really fun knit.

i love the color subs! the color subs are listed in my december 11 2006 post.

and the fit.

now i get to show her off at the madrona fiber retreat this coming weekend :-)

madrona is sooooooooooooooooooooooo much fun, fantastic classes, great market, but best of all are my friends that i'll get to see. some for the first time, hi kerry!

denise and i are rooming again. last year we met for the first time as room-mates, instantly i felt like we'd known each other for years!

this year i'm not taking any spinning classes, all knitting.

thurday is lapland hand garments -the mittens from rovaniemi with susanna hansson.

friday is bohus stickning, also taught by susanna hansson.

saturday is the two color patterns of märta stina with carol rhoades. marta stina's knitting is featured on the new piecework magazine.

can you tell i can hardly wait?

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

the queen is in the corner

but she isn't counting her money.
the queen is in time out.
look here, the needles have returned home, and a sleeve is started.
knit knit, hmm, looks a little large. i changed the rate of decrease, as i want the sleeves to be 2 1/2 inches longer than marina.
measure with marina, ack, the sleeve is too big.
rip rip start over using the every 4th row decrease.
knit knit knit, the bloody new sleeve still looks too big!
measure again, the sleeve needs 8 stitches narrower than what i have.
raja says, "you woke me up for this?"
"i think not."
a 2 x2 rib noro scarf sounds really good right about now...

Thursday, January 11, 2007


well, i got the body done. but i can't find the small rubbermaid with my holz&stein circs for the neck and sleeves :-(

i know i took it down to lauderdale last week, to start the sweater. and i thought i brought it back home. gee, i don't know how it's possible to lose something in my pristine orderly immaculate home.....

raja is not impressed.

carla, it took about ten day to get to this point.

Monday, January 08, 2007

i haven't been spinning

because i cannot put down my knitting. marina gave me the push to sub vy colors for queen anne's lace from stillwater.
i love the colors!
first i swatched with all the colors, and half a repeat. hmm, i wasn't sure.

so then i swatched a checkerboard taking out 2 of the colors. they blended more seamlessly, but seamless was blah.

so back in the 2 colors went.
this is my project for the stranded - the colorwork challenge.

i am using the set in sleeve shaping from marina, and so far the sizing is great. i tinkered with how long to make the body, so that the shoulders will meet at the end of a repeat. then i'll have to figure out where to start the top of the sleeves, so the cuff ends at the end of a pattern.
math, blech, that's my daughter's thing. she's a math wiz.
gratuitous kitty photos :-)

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

a lovely day to dye

twisted knitters here we come!

first dd and i wet the rovings for a few hours in water with a little dish soap.

the girls ready to dye, masks in place.

supplies laid out. jacquard dyes.

bwaaahhhaaaahaaaaaa, the mad chemist.

dd dyeing her first roving.

ready for the saran wrap.

into the microwave.

we nuked them for 15 minutes, to make sure the dye took.

dripping on the shower rod.

drying in the sun.

fabulous fun day! thanks margene, for starting the twisted knitters group!

next stop, spin spin spin.

* added for robin, full power on the microwave for 15 minutes!