What will I binge on next?

This week, I hit a milestone. After months of binge watching, and having never watched it while it was on, I finished watching Gilmore Girls. And frankly, the last two seasons just weren’t very good. I was kinda disappointed in how it all ended, I wanted Lorelai and Luke to go on the boat trip together. I mean, April did conveniently back out because science camp, leaving the perfect opening for another companion.

However, it did provide me with plenty of knitting fodder. I’m past the first sleeve hole on my Lopes, which has been a good project for TV knitting. Not too much thought, except for the elongated stitch wedges.

First armhole done!

But I won’t have to wait long for another thing to binge watch: Orange is the New Black starts next week! And how convenient that I’m knitting something orange.

Knitting Sewing WIP Wednesday

Out of hibernation

This weekend, I felt the inexplicable urge to work on a sewing project, something I haven’t done in a while. So I pulled the beginnings of a quilt out of a (possibly more than) year-long hibernation.

The pattern is French Roses, which looks kinda dowdy in the sample picture because of the color choice, but I bought the pattern after seeing more colorful versions that turned out well, like the ones on this Pinterest board.

Mine is a riot of color, using two sets of fat quarter bundles that I bought years ago from JoAnn’s, with some scraps of green fat eighths to make the leaves.

It's a lot of work making such pretty flowers.

It’s a lot of work making such pretty flowers.

After pinning all the flowers together, I faced the challenge of deciding on an acceptable layout with the limitations of a small apartment and two cats.

French Roses Progress 2


But a layout decision has been reached! I just have to applique all the flowers and sew the squares together. Maybe next week.

I also finished the first wedge on my Lopes cardi-skirt/skirt-igan (cardi-skirt-igan?).


I keep worrying that I’ve miswrapped a stitch or miscounted, but so far, so good. I like how the elongated stitch wedges are coming together. This is going to require some serious blocking when it’s done, and I wonder if my apartment is up to the challenge.


Getting back in the swing of things, or an interlude about how a project is born

It’s been a busy few months, and my last attempt at blogging hasn’t worked out like I would have liked. But better late than never, right?

I just finished and blocked a new design last night (and wore it to knit group today slightly damp out of impatience). It still needs to be sized and tested, but I’m hoping to figure that out soon. In the meantime, here’s a little closeup.

Pretty color and pretty fabric...

Pretty color and pretty fabric…

It’s madelinetosh Tosh Vintage in Curiosity, and took about 2.5 skeins. This yarn sat in my stash for more than four years before I could figure out what it wanted to be. I tried making the Sakura Top from an old issue of Interweave Knits out of it, but it wasn’t working.

However, I still wanted to try to make that top, so I bought some Classic Elite Soft Linen in a vibrant gold, because it reminded me of marigolds. (Yay for sales at the LYS!) But then, I saw something amazing from designer Lee Meredith of leethalknits: Lopes. It’s a cardigan AND a skirt! How genius is that?

The pattern is written so that you can use any yarn you want, but alter the stitch counts and needle sizes accordingly. There’s a lot of math involved, and I’m impressed as to how she figured all that out, especially after seeing her post about the frogging and sweater surgery she did to make it work.

Do ALL the math!

Do ALL the math!

So, I’ve opted to use the Soft Linen to make my Lopes instead, and cast on today. My first mod was using a size 7 needle instead of an 8, since the linen is going to have some drape. And I already made my first mistake after miscalculating a number, which involved dropping stitches and picking them up in seed stitch. Such a pain. But I think this is going to be AWESOME when it’s done. See my project page for more photos.

Had to drop two stitches and pick them up in seed stitch because I miscounted. Can you tell? :)

Had to drop two stitches and pick them up in seed stitch because I miscounted. Can you tell? 🙂


Welcome back, Blogger

Wow, it’s been a while. Yep.

A lot has happened since I last updated this blog: a new job, new apartment, and not as much knitting time as I’d like.

But hey, there’s no time like the present to get back on the wagon, right?

I’m finalizing a new design for my LYS, and I’ll be releasing it soon.

And I designed this cool hat too:

Double Gradient Hat: slouchy, triangles and a pom-pom make for a really fun hat!

I’ll try my best to keep this updated again!

Knitting Savannah

A visit with The Copper Corgi

Yesterday I had the pleasure of meeting Sarah, the dyer of Copper Corgi yarns (and the yarn’s namesake, Penny the corgi). We don’t live far from each other, so I finally had time to swing by and visit her dyeing studio. She is developing a new line of gradient mini-skeins, and I will be designing a pattern specifically for the yarn. I’m really excited!

Yarn in the Dye Pot

Some freshly dyed yarn!

Winding mini-skeins

Winding mini-skeins with a very cool motorized setup!

Gradient yarn

Gradients in a red-orange colorway.



Holla Knits Knitting TNNA

The obligatory post-TNNA post

Finally getting back to updating this little blog! It’s been pretty crazy since I went to TNNA, the biggest trade show in the yarn industry. I met so many great people, and saw all these great yarns that I’m itching to design with. I also got to have a nice Sunday breakfast with my fellow Holla Knits designers in attendance.

Yes, I know this post is a little late to be about the show, but I did a little week-long Midwest tour to visit family and friends in Illinois and Michigan because I was already in Indianapolis. So to put the cherry on top of a productive business trip, I got to end it with relaxing time visiting people I don’t get to see often enough. It involved many forms of transit, from buses to trains to planes. I only wish I’d been able to take a boat somewhere, just to complete the major modes of transit.

This was my first show, and I’ll absolutely go again. Since going, I feel more like a grown-up designer, and not just a wannabe staring at Ravelry and dreaming about designing. The cogs have been turning on all these new ideas that I want to pursue. I spent yesterday fleshing out new design ideas and swatching, and since today is a gross, dreary, rainy day in Georgia, I think I’ll be swatching some more. Woo!

I also succumbed to the Instagram monster during TNNA, and it’s been a little addicting. I’ve been posting some fun pics, including some of my cats (of course). I’m clairesandow on there, just like my Twitter. Follow me, please!

Knitting Savannah

Sheep to Shawl

It’s been a busy weekend, so I’m just getting around to posting my latest adventure: sheep shearing. Every year, the Fiber Guild of the Savannahs, together with Oatland Island, put on a sheep-to-shawl event, where we demonstrate the process of shearing the sheep, carding the fleece, spinning the yarn, and weaving it into a shawl. The shawl is then raffled off to a lucky winner.

Having never sheared a sheep before, I volunteered to help. It’s kind of a bucket list thing. 🙂 It takes several people to wrangle a sheep and shear it. One person to hold the front legs, one to hold the back, another to whisper sweet nothings into the sheep’s ear, and a few more to help cut the fleece. Since this was a more of a historical reenactment, we sheared the sheep with handheld shears, not electric. The whole process took about an hour, though I’m sure professionals can do it a lot faster. It was a lot of fun, and I’ll definitely do it again next year!


These were REALLY sharp and pointy.


This is the first sheep, Cloud, before his haircut.

Progress shot! He had a lot of wool.

Progress shot! He had a lot of wool.

Cloud next to all his fleece.

Cloud next to all his fleece.

The second sheep, Storm with Cloud, after their shearing. They weren't too happy to see me when I took this picture. :)

The second sheep, Storm, with Cloud, post-shearing. They weren’t too happy to see me when I took this picture. 🙂


Something, something, polka dots…Something, something, complete.

My Bridgette Skirt is done! I couldn’t wait until Friday to post this, for I am an impatient soul. It took me a while to actually start liking this when I first put this on, for pencil skirts can be a hard shape for me to pull off. So I made a few mods that made me feel better about the piece. First, I made the waistband 3 inches instead of 1 1/2. This way, it looks a little better if I decide to tuck it in. I also decided that the pattern’s back side looked better as the front. After my first wear, I also decided to changing the elastic. I’m going to make a fabric casing for the elastic instead of knitting it so there won’t be so much bulk around the waist. So, enough words, I’m posting pictures now!

Bridgette Skirt front

The front (originally back).

Bridgette Skirt back

And the back (originally front).



Knitting WIP Wednesday

Works in progress: February 12, 2014

For once, I’m sharing my WIPs on Wednesday. Quite an accomplishment. I’m still working on the Bridgette Skirt (project page) and I’m onto the fourth and final panel. All those intarsia polka dots are fun, but I don’t fancy having to weave in all those ends. But with this all this cold weather we’ve been having, at least my fears of it being too warm to wear the finished product are unfounded.

Bridgette WIP

Closeup on one of the chevron panels.

Bridgette WIP 2

Polka dots!

I’ve also cast on for Bonny, another project from Tin Can Knits’ Handmade in the UK. After being so happy with my Windswept, I had to knit another project from the Collection. So far, just a few inches of Stockinette down, and about 8 to go. I’m working in Misti Alpaca Lace in the delicious Mojito colorway. It’s mostly greens with splashes of lavender and yellow. This yarn is going to knit up so soft and drapey, and this project is perfect for knitting group. I can talk all I want and not mess up. 🙂 I’m also going to attempt to do beading on the top lace portion, inspired by another project I saw.  Here’s my project page, in its not-so-exciting glory.

Bonny WIP

Hard to photograph a curling Stockinette tube…


A new hat for Friday

This week, I was in dire need of a quick project to take a break from the Bridgette Skirt. Since I’m done with the chevron panels, I’m on the polka dots section that requires intarsia, and isn’t especially portable. So, a nice hat was the answer. I saw the Dusty Miller Hat show up a few days ago, and really liked the look of it. It’ll be a great hat for those days when it’s still a tiny bit chilly, which I will welcome after this crazy polar vortex.

I used yarn from my stash, some FibraNatura Yummy in the Mint colorway that I found on the cheap at Tuesday Morning. (Woo Tuesday Morning!) I also had to go up a hook size, as I’m always a tight crocheter. And blocking worked wonders in making this hat look good. I was skeptical on my try-on, but after blocking, it’s growing on me. I’ve worn it all day.

I haven’t crocheted in a while, even though I learned that before I learned to knit. It’s nice to go back to your roots sometimes. Though despite having done this for a while, I had never done a foundation single crochet. And I think I’ll never go back to the traditional chain X number again if I can help it. Never again will I have to keep count of a crazy number of chains, only to find I did too many or came up short.


Yay for iPad selfies and poorly lit apartments!

Check out my project page!