Thursday, March 29, 2012

Another wee project

This time a little blue go with the little blue shoes.

Just one more pair of booties, and then this parcel is off to baby Nora.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

A nice surprise

My company has an employee incentive plan - everyone gets a bonus if the company meets its yearly goals. I am two months short of qualifying for it, so I was very surprised when my boss handed me a $100 Sears gift card today. She said they wanted to say thank you, even though I don't qualify for it.

Naturally - I immediately went on a shopping spree and bought shoes!I also got the quilt you see in the background, a shirt for me, two shirts for Dave and some unmentionables. I love shopping!

Monday, March 26, 2012


There hasn't been too much knitting this past weekend.As you can see, we've found a good book to curl up with.

I did manage to accomplish a small FO though:

My Baby Janes in some left over blue angora for baby Nora. I think I have enough left to make a wee bonnet. Sometimes the smallest projects are the most satisfying aren't they?

Friday, March 23, 2012

Birth of a design

My inspiration for my designs comes from all sorts of different places. Sometimes it's a stitch book, sometimes it's a picture, sometimes it's a dream. This time it was a yarn.

A couple of weeks ago, Mom was mucking about in the studio and sent me this picture
I teased her about making a mess and then didn't think much more about it... until I got up the the house and saw it all dry.I had to claim it! (Mine, mine, mine!) Then immediately cake it...
Swatch it..

And knit itMore details coming soon.....

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Jump and shout!

On the weekend I finished up the cranked legwarmers - I just had to add ribbing by hand - and delivered them to a very excited little girl.
Apparently she tried to wear them to bed! Win!

Friday, March 16, 2012

Baby Bruin has arrived

While I was frolicking in Westeros - my friend was at the hospital awaiting the birth of his first child.

She waited until the wee hours of the next morning, but the world's newest Bruins fan finally made her debut, and her name is Nora.

Fortunately, I'd finished her cardi a few days before.
I just have to sew the buttons on (they are just placed there for illustration at the moment). The logo blocked out nicely too:

It will probably be a few days before I get to see her daddy, so I'm going to try to whip up a couple of pairs of Baby Janes, and maybe a bonnet or two.

Welcome Nora!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Maidens of Westeros

I've mentioned before that one of my favourite authors is George R. R. Martin. Among other books, he's the author of the popular Ice and Fire series, which was recently turned into the HBO series Game of Thrones (second season starts April1!).

Mr. Martin was in Toronto yesterday to do a book signing, and there was also an exhibit of Game of Thrones at the TIFF BellLightbox theatre promoting the series next season. So, my GRRM-loving friends and I dressed up as maidens of Westeros and headed off to the big city.
The signing wasn't until 7 p.m., so we hit the exhibit first, where they had costumes and photos and even Ned Stark's severed head! (Sorry, no pics, no cameras weren't allowed inside the exhibit).

Outside the exhibit, HBO had the Iron Throne, and gave everyone the chance to have their picture taken on it.
Sadly, the quality is not great. But because we dressed the part, we got pulled off to the side given free t-shirts and a few of the HBO marketing team took a few extra pics of us.
After that it was a late lunch and then to the signing. We were almost two hours early, but the line-up already spanned three-and-a-half blocks longs.

So what are maidens to do with all this time on their hands?
Knit of course!
Lady Bree was working on cat toys, and I brought along my lace cardigan.

It took about 3 hours, but we did all get our books signed.
(Yep - that's my Bitterroot shawl) All in all -a fun, but tiring day. Now bring on the next book in the series!

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Weekend wrap-up

It's been a pretty productive weekend here at Chez Wandering Cat.

Baby Bruin got finished up and is now blocking. I'm happy to say, the logo evened out nicely. I'll post pics when it's dry and the buttons are on. Still no sign of baby, so I might knit a pair of matching socks.

In other knitting news, my honourary niece asked her Mommy to knit her some legwarmers - however, her mommy hates knitting two of anything, so I stepped up to the plate and offered to be her pinch knitter.

Mom had the brilliant idea of cranking a pair on her sock machine, so I did just that on Saturday:I just have to pick up the stitches and add the ribbing - but fastest pair of legwarmers ever! And, since I still couldn't resist actually knitting a pair:
She ask for "princess colours" and I don' t think it gets much more princessy than pink, purple, sparkles and hearts! These are knit in Twinkle Cat DK (colour is Faerie Petals) and the design is my own. I'm going to see them next weekend, and I hope to have both pairs finished.

And I just had to scratch that itch to start a new cardigan:It's the Empire Line Cardigan by Debbie Bliss. I've wanted to knit this forever. I've had the yarn forever too. It's RYC Cashsoft (Cashmere/Merino/Microfibre) the colour is "Poison". I got it on eBay a few years back specifically to make this cardigan. After all the lace shawls I've knit - I figured a lace cardigan won't pose too much trouble - and might even keep my interest enough to get it done quickly.

However, the pattern isn't charted. The first two rows gave me a heck of a time. But once I got the pattern set, and was able to read the lace, it was smooth sailing. I already have the pattern memorized.

I'm making the medium size instead of the large. I've knit a couple of Debbie's patterns, and I find the always tend to be very roomy (even when my gauge is spot-on). A couple of Ravelers have mentioned it in their pattern notes too.

That's it for me - what were you up to this weekend?

Saturday, March 10, 2012

At long last....

... I finally have some decent shots of my Lore Hoodie.
Once I got the buttons in the right place, it fit a little better, so I'm pretty happy with it. I would eventually like to change out the faux-horn toggles for some nice plain wooden ones, but I haven't been able to find any I like just yet. The faux-horn ones were in Mom's stash, so they'll do the job for now.
There are several mods to this pattern - the most obvious are the sleeves. The pattern calls for plain 1/2 sleeves, but since I wanted to wear this as a coat - that wasn't going to cut it. Not long after starting the lace for the skirt, I had the brain-wave to mimic it on the sleeves. The result, as you can see, is a nice bell sleeve.The pattern also calls for chunky - but I used a super-chunky. knit on 6.5 mm needles, it created a nice thick, firm fabric, better suited to outwear than a cardigan I think. Final mods were small construction-based changes. I didn't bother casting off at the neck, then picking up stitches for the hood - I just kept knitting the hood. Also, I grafted the seam of the hood closed instead of casting off and seaming. For the front bands, I knit them right to the edge (much like the construction of the 10-stitch blanket) - saving another little bit of sewing.
This yarn is an alpaca/merino/silk blend (dyed by me). We don't carry it in our shop, it was something special offered by our supplier - but I can recreate the colour (Vampy). I have some in Fluffy Cat Lite in my stash. It definitely is warm - it was hovering around freezing today while I was out and about and I wore this instead of my winter coat.

So, all in all, not a bad pattern and garment. My fingers are starting to itch to make a cardigan now...

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Three things on a Wednesday

1. I've cast off the body of Baby BruinThe logo is definitely a little too oval - but considering this is only my third colourwork project I'm not complaining. And I'm pretty confident I can block it a little more round. So it's just the sleeves and bands left to do. No sign of baby yet, so I'm still on track.

2. We had a long meeting at work today, so I finally restarted my Cheshire socksThis is definitely going to be a long-term project as they are knee socks!

3. Cat being cute
That is all.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

KAL time!

It's KAL time again at Wandering Cat Studio!
We've got a great year-long KAL going on on Ravelry - join our group - join in and win fabulous yarny prizes!
Also keep your eye peeled - I'll have another contest here soon!

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Baby Bruin

The last baby of the recent boom is due in just a few weeks.

This baby will be the first child for a very good friend of mine. And since he's such a good friend, I'm pulling out all the stops and doing something I don't normally do in my knitting...Colourwork!

My friend is a HUGE Bruins fan (we won't talk about how ridiculously excited he go over last year's Stanley Cup).

My colourwork skills are mediocre at bed (I really don't enjoy it) and at the moment it looks a little like a Bruins egg - but I'm confident I can block it a little wider. I'm using a mix of Regia (black) and Baby Ull (Gold and White). Between Mom and I, we had the perfect colours in our stash. SCORE!

It's just a basic top-down, fingering-weight cardigan, and I found a Bruins chart on Ravelry to put on the back.

I'm surprised at how fast it's knitting up, considering it's fingering weight. I love that babies are small!

Now... does anyone know where I can get some small Bruins buttons?

Thursday, March 1, 2012


Now available!This has been my go-to hat this winter. I can wear it with my hair down, or tuck a bun up under it. I love it!This one was give to Dave's grandma for Christmas. She loved it.

It takes just one skein of Top Cat DK.