Knitting Olympics, pt. 3: Gold medal, please!

Birch (Ravelled) is finished:It does, however, remain unblocked. That undertaking will go down in the next day or two.What an undertaking -- Birch is huge! I was especially thankful for that fourth ball of Kidsilk Night that I picked up just in case, way back when.

I'm so glad that I decided to partake in the Knitting Olympics this year. So where do I pick up my gold medal?


Listening: Scott Hardkiss -- Technicolor Dreamer

Is it a mild-mannered Tuesday morning or a balmy Friday night in L.A.? Let Scott Hardkiss' Technicolor Dreamer blur the line between the two in the most delicious way possible. Mr. Hardkiss' sense of humour, joy and fun pervade these songs, rendering them inescapable and utterly infectious delights.

Knitting Olympics, pt. 2: Birch (cont'd)

Birch (Ravelled) is growing:I've long since lost track of what number repeat I'm on. What matters is that

a) The stitch-count is under 150 stitches per row (and falling,)
b) I've got the pattern memorized, and
c) I no longer fear Kidsilk anything.

At this point I only have one concern, which is simple and concise -- how the crap am I going to block this thing? Seriously, tips and advice would be appreciated muchly.

Knitting Olympics, pt. 1: Birch 3.0

My Knitting Olympics project, the formidable Birch (Ravelled), is progressing nicely:It's a big, floaty, sparkly, GREY confection and I love it to pieces. The pattern (even when worked in Kidsilk Night,) is strangely more dull than dangerous. I'm somewhere around the end of the...seventh (eighth?) repeat.

This is my third attempt at Birch, for various reasons. The first and second attempts are chronicled in these ancient posts from almost exactly three years ago. I think it's safe to say that I've improved a bit knitting-wise in the meantime.

Decadence mittens are now live!

I know -- I can hardly believe it either -- but the Decadence mittens are finished and the pattern is now live.Indulge some of your favourite 19th century vices with these lushly ornate mittens. Hidden among the Art Nouveau-inspired swirls of foliage (or are those curls of smoke?) are instruments of delicious deviant delights – poppy pods and absinthe spoons.

Get the pattern here on Ravelry. Give it a day or so to appear in my Etsy shop.Now I'm off to go locate my copy of Birch and to wrangle some Kidsilk Night, all because I was lenient enough to get sucked into the whole Knitting Olympics thing. Yep.

If you're looking for me, I'll be the one crying beneath the pile of tangled sparkly mohair.

Decadence mittens: first look

Just started these today: Art Nouveau + poppy pods + Absinthe spoons = Decadence Mittens. Old-timey vices, murky and mysterious. Yes, there's a lot going on on this mitten so far, and not too many places upon which the eye can alight and rest. Tomorrow, hopefully, there will be. All in all, not bad for one afternoon's work.


Listening: Chris Coco's Melodica

I used to think that Internet radio/podcasts were things that happened to other people, but not to me. It turns out that I just needed to find the right combination of content and personality to get me interested (isn't that always the way?) and wow, is this one amazing. I'd been a fan of Chris Coco's music for quite some time and I am thoroughly smitten with Melodica, his weekly broadcast. The mix he plays is genre-spanning, uncategorizable and entirely brilliant; if you have even a passing interest in acoustic, electronic or downtempo music you really need to give it a listen. It also doesn't hurt that a goodly amount of what he plays is extremely beachy and summery, which is especially nice this time of year. A Canadian winter may be happening outside my door, but mentally I'm on some lovely Ibizan beach, beverage in hand.

Melodica is pure bliss to listen (and knit) to. Listen here, on or here, on

Strawberry Mittens are now live!

It's true! The Strawberry Mittens are finished and ready to go!Instructions are included, as usual, to make a par of fingerless Strawberry Mittens as well. Get them here on Ravelry or here in my Etsy shop.I can hardly believe how fast these mittens happened. The idea for mittens with strawberries on popped into my head late in the afternoon this past Sunday (that would be the day before yesterday.) Yesterday I cast on, and turned out over more than half a mitten. And now today -- the mitten got fingertips and a stripey thumb, and I re-did the charts and wrote up the pattern -- and here we are! Which is just as well, really, since the Main Colour yarn (Knit Picks Palette in Blossom Heather) kept reminding me of strawberry ice cream, which just made me hungry. As I was making them I also fancied that I could actually smell strawberries, too. I think this was all brought on by some kind of strange play between the pink and the red (Palette in Pimento) yarns -- the colour combination came out looking really luscious.

Would you believe that this is my 45th pattern for SpillyJane Knits? I hardly can!

Now to get to work on pattern No. 46...and to get to knitting my sock-contribution for Three Irish Girls' Sock Yarnista club (I'm Miss March 2010.)

There are new mittens and they have strawberries on

I am not making this up:They're even half-finished (and they've been Ravelled) -- not bad for an afternoon's work! Just call it my ode to "cute culture." I need to see this strawberry motif on legwarmers.

As for the next pair of mittens...well. They're on the way! They're distinctly darker in theme and motif and I love them already. I hope you will, too.

What's next

This week has been a crazy one, to say the least. Firstly, I finished off the last two pairs of L'Amour et la Morte socks (Ravelled) for the Antique Beat Boutique (more on that later,) and then I received these in the mail:Beautiful yarn from White Oak Studios in Breakfast at Tiffany's and The Italian Job. The colours are super-saturated and the yardage is generous, so of course I'm in love and dreaming of mittens. With any luck, today that dreaming will turn into doing as I've got a brand new mitten pattern fresh out of the stu-gee-oh and I'm keen to cast on.

Of course I'm doing lots of dreaming these days, mainly of activities of this nature:Soon, soon...and hopefully with one of these.

And just to warn you, there are other new things on the way.