Monday, September 22, 2008

Rainy Saturday - In Detail

The other day, some friends and I decided to share our day in pictures. This is something we’ve done a couple of times now, and always with interesting results. This time around, our “day” fell on the same day as the Kitchener-Waterloo knitter’s fair. I wasn’t sure I would go, but felt like I had to do something picture-worthy. And if I’m going to take all kinds of pictures and tell stories, then I might as well blog it. Here is my apology in advance for a VERY long post. Feel free to skim.

After lounging about all that morning, I decided to get in the car and drive to Kitchener-Waterloo for the fair. It was a chilly, rainy day, but the roads weren’t bad.

I started to take the most direct route to the fair, but saw signs that directed me differently, and I ended up taking the route I knew best, past my old stomping grounds in Guelph. I loved being back on roads I knew and have driven dozens of times.

driving to

I arrived at Bingeman’s without incident, and my first thought as I drove into the parking lot was, “I’ve been here before”. I can’t remember why – I think maybe there must have been an Engineering career fair or something way back when.

As I’d had such a long, lazy morning, I didn’t arrive at the fair until almost three. So I didn’t get to check out any of the workshops the website had mentioned, but there was still plenty to see.

I guess in previous years, the vendors had all been in one big room, and the place was jam-packed. This was the first year they expanded to two rooms, and everything was well-spaced, with wide aisles. There were lots of deals to be had, but I was fairly restrained. But not saintly.

I wandered both rooms, visiting every stall with varying degrees of interest. I had just wandered into my last stall, and was thinking it was weird that I hadn’t found the Linda’s Craftique booth, when I heard Linda call out my name. I turned around to find that I was, in fact, in her booth. It was nice to see a few familiar faces (and familiar F.O.s).

Knitting show


It continued to pour all day, which didn’t really bother the knitters, as they scurried from hall to car laden with fibre and tools.

I stayed right up to the end, at 4:30 (partly in hopes that some vendors might suddenly decide to lighten their loads home and offer ridiculous deals) then headed back to my car in the suddenly empty parking lot.

I was a bit confuddled to find a satellite dish in the middle of some bushes by my car. Next to… nothing at all. Okay.

on the road

Then it was back on the road for me. Despite the rain, it was a lovely drive along familiar roads.


I love driving back roads at this time of year. Even better is a couple of weeks from now, when the leaves have started to change, and the world is awash with sunset colours.

rainy road

But this time of year is lovely, too, with the rich browns and yellows of the fields, all on a backdrop of lush greenness.


And every now and then, in the distance, or – more startlingly – suddenly in a field flashing by, you can see bright sheets of brilliant yellow canola.


Yes, I know I probably took too many pictures, but I don’t get out this way nearly often enough these days.

I didn’t even notice the big windmill behind this house until I was going through the photo files later at home.

rain and wind

I took the long, slow way back to Guelph, and then through the city, driving along roads that took me back in time about nine years.


It’s been bothering me that I couldn’t remember the name of the street I lived on in second year, so I swung by that way to remind myself that it was “Keats Crescent”.


I drove south on highway 6, past the lawn furniture/camping equipment place that has life size dinosaur statues. (no idea)


And when I got home, I drooled over my purchases. I got some lovely green roving, a spool, and this beautiful niddy noddy.
niddy noddy

I think I became interested in spinning mainly for the beautiful tools and their fun names.

After playing with my new toys, I got dinner together. The last of my homemade tomato sauce over shell pasta with plenty of parmesan.


Then I flaked out on the couch. I was not alone.


Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Harrow Fair

A couple of weekends ago - Labour Day weekend, in fact - I paid my second annual visit to the Harrow Fair.

I wasn't terribly surprised to find that not a whole lot has changed in the past year.  There were the same giant sunflowers.

The same very, very tall sunflowers.

I did notice the Lego category, which was new to me.

And last year, I don't remember seeing quite so many categories for flower arrangements.  They included 'Best single red rose in a white vase - 10" division', and the one below, 'People put flowers in the darnedest things'.

Those 'darned' things included a soup can, an old banjo or guitar, and a bedpan.

The critters were pretty much the same.  Though I'd imagine they were the next generation, as they were advertised for sale by the pound in many cases.

I didn't see one of these last year - a display on knitting and crocheting.

I guess I was still developing my 'fibre art radar' last Labour Day.

Unfortunately, the turkey was not one of little Kiona's highlights.  While she found it hilarious when I or her mum would 'gobble' at her, it was not at all funny when a giant, ugly bird did it face-to-face.

This was just before things got a little teary.

Which leads me to the biggest difference between last year and this year.

Last year (please note bulge):
And this year (please note bulge is now walking and has developed high levels of cuteness):
Who knows what next year will bring.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008


The second project that I finished up this weekend was this little bluey greeny item.

If it looks vaguely familiar, that's because yes, I did just make another one of these.  But it also means that you saw it on Ravelry, because I have been a bad, bad blogger.  
Okay, here's my first:

These are both Baby Surprise Jackets, knit from Knitpicks Felici sock yarn.  It's wonderfully soft and perfect for baby projects.  The socks are cable rib socks, from the "Better than Booties" collection from Interweave knits. 

The pink/blue/green (Coney Island colourway) jacket and bootees went to my cousin's new little one, Tristan, out in Edmonton.  The blue/green/brown (Schooner colourway) is destined for an as-yet unknown baby, due in about three weeks.

These are really cute, fast projects, and I can see myself doing plenty more in the future.  I do have to say that I did not have much luck following Elizabeth Zimmerman's pattern.  The style of writing there just didn't click for me.  It was the Baby Surprise Notes by Dawn Adcock that made it possible for me to knit - and enjoy knitting - these jackets.  The notes don't give you the pattern - that, you still need to buy or borrow.  But they give you the pattern instructions line by line, more like a modern pattern. 

Which, yes, may be a bit of spoon feeding, but apparently, that's what I need, so I'm glad it's available.

I know!  Two posts in two days!   Crazy!

Monday, September 08, 2008

Wee Things


There's really only one thing a picture like this can mean to a knitter.  Things have been finished!

I spent most of the weekend seaming, weaving in ends, sewing on buttons, and blocking.  I rarely left the couch, which was pretty much the plan going into the weekend, after a somewhat hellacious Friday spent hopping from one waiting room to the next, as I tried to deal with a messed up cornea.  Which, by the way, was made much worse by doctor number two (of three) scraping at it because he thought there was something on my eye.  Turns out, he was seeing a scratch and misinterpreting it as some kind of foreign material.  Thanks, doc!  Oh, well.  He did send me off to an ophthamologist, who gave me very good eyedrops.

Anyway - knitting!  The first project I finished up was my pair of Embossed Leaves socks.

Embossed Leaves 1

These were knit out of some lovely hand dyed yarn from Sunnyside Ellen's etsy shop.  The yarn was dyed to give a gradual descent into darker shades.  I started with the lighter end, as the socks were knit top-down.  I was a bit disappointed that I never made it to the darkest green shades.

If I did this again, I'd likely choose a toe-up and go the other way, since I'd rather see more of the darker green.  But that's really the only disappointment, and it's a minor one.

The pattern was easy to memorize, and gives really lovely results.  It also gave me the chance to try a star toe for the first time, as shown in the awkward photograph above.

The only really unusual thing about these socks was the way I finished them up.  I used a nine inch circular needle.
Apparently, this is a new offering from Hiya Hiya, and Linda my LYSO of Linda's Craftique was kind enough to let me try this out.  I admit that it's a bit awkward at first, as the needles themselves (as opposed to the cable) are very short.  I think that a lot of people just wouldn't enjoy using these, but it works for me just because I happen to hold my needles just right for them. 

They're ideal for a purse knitting project, and I like them well enough that I've used them to cast on for my next sock project.  Which are the Uptown Boot Socks from Favorite Socks (that's really hard to type without the "u", by the way), in safety orange.

Up next - more finished stuff!