Wednesday, September 30, 2020

Treble Jig Legwarmers Update

I'm happy to say, I've added a size to the TJL. The pattern, as written, now covers calf measurements of 9-22"/22.5-55 cm. Just in time for autumn weather! You can find the pattern page here.

Of course it's 29°C (84.2°F) with the humidity here today, so not exactly autumnal. Ma Nature, would ya cool it off a bit?!

You may have noticed a difference at the top of the site. I'll wait while you scroll up ;) I've wanted to add a logo for quite awhile and finally came up with a little something. What do you think? 

That's it for today! I'll be writing a post about Ravelry's latest announcement in a day or two. I'm letting everything sit for a bit rather than flying off the handle; I do that a little too easily sometimes.

Yours in yarn and fan-blown air,

Monday, September 28, 2020


 Many of us live with helpers. They often have four legs and fur, and aren't quite as helpful as their title implies. I posted this collage a few places this weekend:

A nine photo collage of a bright colored striped sweater being obscured to various degrees by a silver tabby cat, mostly her back.

I wanted to take a progress picture of my Harvest sweater. Then Silver, the older of my furry nieces, decided this was a good time to be helpful. As you can see, out of nine photos only 1 shows the entire sweater back. (The cardigan is knit topdown in one piece. I find the back view easier to see progress, so usually take my photos from that view.) And even that one is photobombed by a pair of furry gray legs. She's quite a help!

I did get two other photos last night after using the last bit of the first ball of yarn. (I'm knitting with Lion Brand Mandala which has 590yds in a 150g skein! Talk about value!) No Silver help with these ones; sorry ;)

Back view of brightly coloured striped sweater. The sleeve caps are on hold, as are the bottom body stitches. The stripes are a gradient of pink, mint, teal, blue, and purple shades.

Front view of brightly coloured striped cardigan. The sleeve caps are on hold, as are the bottom body stitches. The stripes are a gradient of pink, mint, teal, blue, and purple shades.

I started working one of the sleeves today so it should go quick. I'm toying with the idea of adding pockets and making it a bit longer than the pattern. It's such a lovely basic sweater that little bits of customization just adds to it. It's from Tin Can Knits if you're not familiar with the pattern.

My goal is to finish it soon and then bring my focus back to my own designs. Normally having a few of my own designs plus a "me" project or two going at once doesn't faze me but this year... I think we can all agree this year is just something else altogether! I have a worrisome health appointment coming next month and I want to wear my new sweater, a kind of talisman that all goes well. While not traditional autumn colors, it'll certainly be a bright spot.

Yours in yarn and glowing colors,

Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Fall, Nature & Music

Yesterday was the first day of Fall so working on my Harvest cardigan seems seasonally appropriate. I have the sleeves and body separated now:

Back view of in progress sweater, showing the shift of color: pink and mint in the garter stitch neckband, then mint, shades of aquamarine/teal, and blue shifting towards the needle.

This is a very relaxing knit, which is good for a day when a former hurricane is making its presence felt nearby. Around 9:30am NDT today, Teddy made landfall in Nova Scotia. I've seen some video from near Port aux Basques, NL showing the winds and waves they were starting to get about an hour ago. Nature is truly awe inspiring; it can destroy as quickly as it can renew. A sobering reminder of how fragile we are. 

I made some more progress on the Hornpipe Bag yesterday; almost to the halfway mark of the knotwork motif:
Three different angles showing bits of colored knitting on a black background. Not quite identifiable as a knotwork motif.

My roommate and I were listening to my itunes while I was knitting, which was interesting to say the least. Do you ever do that? Just hit shuffle instead of a specific playlist, I mean. I think it's revealing to hear so many different parts of my personality and/or interests placed next to each other. The Andrews Sisters followed by Bon Jovi followed by a set of slow jigs followed by Allan Sherman, ... You get the idea. I'm more than a little eclectic in my musical tastes, to say the least. Give it a try sometime; you might be surprised by what gems you have hiding in your collection. And you might find some interesting combinations of songs that you otherwise wouldn't have found too.

Yours in yarn and BNL's "Pinch Me" (current song playing),

Friday, September 18, 2020

Happy International Irish Dance Day!

 Yesterday was the first International Irish Dance Day. About time ;) It was fabulous looking at all the posts on Insta. A nice way to spend the day since I was laid up with a stomach bug. Unfortunately that meant I didn't get to pull out my hardshoes and make a new video to post. I did watch some ancient videos on YouTube of me and my dance pals, which was a fabulous trip down memory lane. It's been 9 and a bit years since I was last onstage. Wow. Time has definitely flown by! Here's a few moments from "the old days":
Síle onstage in her black dress with red, blue and yellow embroidery. The back drop of the stage is several banners with large Celtic knotworks centered on them. The banners are different colors while the knotworks are white.

My last solo on the Irish Pav stage during Regina's Mosaic Festival. June 2011. Screenshot from video by Laura Popoff

Collage: Top left: Headshot of Síle smiling in her dance dress, full makeup, and curls. Top right: Síle onstage with three other dancers , two brunettes and a redhead, in matching tan skirts and black blouses. Bottom left: Síle mid dance on an outdoor stage, lots of trees in the background. Bottom right: Síle from behind showing her curls and the kite of her dance costume
Top left: All smiles after a performance on the Irish Pavillion stage. June 2010 (cred to Lindsay Sasseville)
Top right: March 2006, me, Nat, H and Sionan onstage at the Cornwall Centre's center court in our first Prairie Gael outfits (not sure who took this one; probably David Popoff)
Bottom left: August 2005, onstage and mid cut at the Saskatchewan Centennial celebrations held in Regina's Wascana Centre (cred to Alice MacDougall)
Bottom right: Check out my curls! And the kite of my dance costume. Irish Pavillion June 2010 (cred to Lindsay Sasseville)

I started dancing with the Irish Club of Regina Dancers in the fall of 1999. I went on to join the Prairie Gael School of Irish Dance in the summer of 2005 and stayed with them until my cross country move in late February/early March 2012. (Literally: my plane left Regina on Feb 29 and I arrived in St. John's on March 1)

A little dance down memory lane. I wouldn't trade them for all the gold. 

Yours in ghillies,

Friday, September 11, 2020

A Finished Project

 I finished my pillow. I think the i-cord I talked about last post was just the right touch for it. Here's the finished look:
A hexagonal pillow with a floral pattern in white on a blue background. It has a blue rounded edging.

A hexagonal pillow with a leaves and vines pattern in blue on a white background with a rounded blue edging.
I'm really pleased with how it turned out. 

Now I can get back to the Hornpipe Bag. I made a mistake with the side chart so I've been knitting from my handwritten notes until I redo it. Which works well on my flair up days; I can't process charts as easily on those days. Which is why my patterns almost always have written out instructions for any charts; Rínce Fada being the current exception.

Yours in yarn and words,

Monday, September 7, 2020


 I finished knitting the second hexagon for my pillow project last night. Here's how it turned out:
White background with blue leaves and vines pattern

I like that the two charts I chose are different from each other; chart D is predominantly blue, while you can see chart E is predominantly white. 

I've chosen to use an i-cord edge to join the two sides together; I have just over two sections done so a bit more than 1/3 the way around. I'm doing the edge in blue; white on the edges would look gungy too quickly, I think. 

The final two rounds on both sides were knit with white and I'm employing a little trick to keep from having white blips happening, as you can see in the next two photos (one from each side):
close up: blue i-cord edging applied to predominantly blue side of pillow

close up: i-cord edging applied to predominantly white side of pillow

What's my secret? Purling the side away from me. 

Ok, so I'm working a 3 stitch i-cord to join two pieces together. The two pieces are on their own holder needles. I cast-on 3 stitches onto the "front side" needle; that is the side facing me. I'm applying the i-cord with the predominantly white side facing me. Using a dpn (double-pointed needle), I knit 2 sts (of the i-cord), then I slip the next st as if to purl. Next I slip the first pillow stitch from the front needle, also purlwise. Now I purl the first stitch from the back needle, pass the slipped pillow stitch over the purled one and off the needle, then pass the i-cord stitch over the purled on and off the needle. There are 3 stitches on the dpn and I slip these back onto the front needle and continue on.

More conventionally written, it looks like this:
*K2, sl 2 pwise from front needle, P1 from back needle, p2sso, transfer 3 sts on dpn back to front needle; rep from *...

Amazing how a little thing like purling a stitch instead of knitting it makes for a cleaner look.

I want to get this joining (and stuffing once 5.5 of the 6 sections are joined) finished this evening, so this is where I'll leave you.

Yours in yarn and i-cord,

Wednesday, September 2, 2020

September? Already?

A cartoon depiction of Síle (long blonde hair with sandy blonde roots, blue cats eye glasses, pale skin with very pink cheeks, gray eyes) wearing a white t-shirt with a gray cat on it playing with a red ball of yarn and jeans, watching a single red maple leaf drift towards the ground

Happy to report all of my current patterns can be found on my pattern tab now. I got the last few set up this morning. I'll be rearranging them a bit (that single column just doesn't use space very well) but they're all ready for browsing. I'm also going to be adding to the yarn information for a few of them; not as consistent as I'd like that information to be, especially with my earlier patterns. 

We're experiencing the lovely sunny warm days of late summer here, mixed in with the cooler and colder nights. Frost warnings made a come back the last few so windows were closed for the first time in quite awhile. Time to start thinking of wool sweaters and possibly hats and mitties. Mmmm, knitting season is on its way! :)

I don't know about you, but fall has become my favourite of seasons. Warm sunny days, cool but not bitter nights. The leaves changing. Fall is a very cozy season. Just cool enough for a shawl or cardigan, usually pretty dry so getting out and enjoying the outdoors is possible. Cooler nights are perfect for curling up with a mug of tea and your knitting, and/or a good book.

This year has seemed to go both too slow and too fast all at the same time. I can be ok with fall lingering a bit. What about you?

Yours in yarn and woolly plans,