Tag Archives: Vogue Knitting

Planning Vacation Knitting

Overcast skies at Fair Harbor Beach

Overcast skies at Fair Harbor Beach

This year, we’re going to Fire Island for a beach vacation where we both get to indulge in our hobbies. My husband wind surfs in the bay and I knit on the ocean beach.

In preparation, I plan out my knitting, especially since there aren’t any yarn stores on Fire Island in case I run out of yarn or supplies or get bored with my current project(s).  To this end, I like to bring a variety of projects that involve different types of knitting and materials. 

For me, beach knitting is great for zen knitting where you get into the knitting zone without having to think. I find that it allows me to relax. This can be good for complex patterns such as lace, long projects that require lots of knitting which would take months otherwise, quick projects that you can finish in an afternoon on the beach or more simple minded projects requiring little thinking. 

When it comes to vacation knitting, I  tend to over pack since I like having the option of changing projects. Vacation knitting is a great way of having a memory of your vacation in terms of the finished item. 

This year, I’m  bringing a combination of pieces. Since I’m looking to reduce the number of WIPs and my stash,there are some stash buster projects in the queue. Here’s what I’m bringing with me:

1] Fountain Pen Shawl (Source: Interweave Magazine 2009)- This project has been planned for outdoor summer knitting since I’m using black Malabrigo sock yarn that I bought on sale at The Point. Alyssa, the manager, inspired this project. After knitting the Shetland Lace Scarf, I had promised myself not to make any more black lace pieces until my choices for the Malabrigo sock yarn were been black or white (and I have tons of white yarn from last year’s wedding projects!). 

2] Nightsong aka Gail (Source: Free Online) This project is already in progress using a free pattern that I found on the internet for free. I used the comments on Ravelry to help me. I’m using a cobweb weight lace cashmere. Between the fineness of the yarn and the complexity of the pattern, it’s taking longer than expected to finish. It’s a present that’s due on July 1st which is definately going to be late.

3] Hemlock Ring Blankie (Source:  Brooklyn Tweed). I’m planning to knit this project in a cotton, wool, silk blend made by a small producer. The yarn looks more interesting than it is to knit with. Usually, I’m not one to jump on such a big internet trend like the Hemlock Ring Blanket but lately I’ve been bitten by the lace doily bug and wanted to use a tried and try pattern to better understand how to extend a doily. This project is a gift.

4] Mitered Top (Source: Vogue Knitting Summer 2009). This is a Norah Gaughan pattern which should have a broader audience given it’s great line. It may be the mix of yarns that turns some people off. Given the way that the top gets more fitted may hurt its following, at least on Ravelry. (Part of NaKniSweMoDo)

5] Grey-Beige-White Long Sleeve Top. (Source:  Basic seater top.) This sweater was started back in March since I wanted a hand made sweater for the spring. Unfortunately, I didn’t get it finished in time. The colors were perfect for the spring in an Anny Blatt/Bouton D’Or linen blend called New Jeans. I am knitting it in a reverse 3/1 rib with a v-neck. The project is crawling towards completion. (Part of NaKniSweMoDo)

6] More knitted doilies. (Source: Online) Using Ravelry’s search function, I’ve been collecting a variety of patterns to test using scraps and swapped yarn. (Recycle projects to use up yarn while creating something useful.)

When I started this list the Botanica Medallion top on the cover of the Summer 2009 Vogue Knitting and my Estonian Lace Shawl were in the queue but I decided to cut back a bit.

In addition, I’ve made sure that I have hard copies of all of the patterns and put them into plastic sleeves to protect them. I  also fortified my knitting notions to ensure that I have enough stitch markers and highlighter tape to keep my projects straight.

Of course, this is more knitting than I can do in this period of time but I believe that it’s better to be overstocked with projects than being bored!

What do  you do for your vacation   knitting?

Sumbtted by Knitted Yarns Editor-in-Chief

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Memorial Day Means Montauk & Yarn

Montauk-The End

Montauk-The End

As beach-loving New Yorkers, My husband and I have ready access to numerous beaches including famous beaches within the city’s boundaries and those along the southern coast of Long Island and the eastern edge of New Jersey. Given our penchant for relatively empty beaches, an oxymoron in New York City in the summer, we like to take a day trip to the land’s end otherwise known as Montauk. Of course, the three hour plus train trip isn’t everyone’s idea of heaven but I bring knitting and my husband brings reading.

 

The beaches are wonderful with their sparse dunes and bent over wind bent trees. We were among the hardy souls who braved the windy weather on Memorial Day. We nestled just below the dunes to be sheltered from the wind which  was too much for our umbrella. We needed to wrap up with hoods to keep the flying sand out of our hair.  The sands buried our blanket so completely that if we hadn’t be laying on it, we would have never found it.

Dunes at Montauk Beach

Dunes at Montauk Beach

Montauk Beach - Deserted due to wind

Montauk Beach - Deserted due to wind

By mid-afternoon, we were ready for a visit to Purl By the Sea. Purl By the Sea is a wonderful local yarn store run by Nora Franzetti  who is also a real estate agent in Montauk. The store is packed with a great selection of yarns from the budget conscious Lamb’s Pride to small producers. There’s a large table in the middle of the store that her husband built. It always has a great of friendly women crowded around with lots of food, chocolate and laughter. My husband who was nestled in the spouse’s rocker said that he felt good listening to the laughter. 

Cotton Color Selection at Purl by the Sea

Cotton Color Selection at Purl by the Sea

Yarns burst out to greet knitters at Purl by the Sea

Yarns burst out to greet knitters at Purl by the Sea

Manos deep color hangs over the knitting table at Purl by the Sea

Manos deep color hangs over the knitting table at Purl by the Sea

I bought some aqua colored Tahki cotton to make the Medallion top from the cover of Vogue Knitting Summer 2009. (Since I had 4 1/2 balls of white in my stash from a yarn swap, I only bought 5 balls. due to the fact that  the women tried to talk me into another color, I think that there will be more if I run out.) I plan to make it on my vacation in June.

Submitted by Knitted Yarns Editor-in-Chief

Think BIG Knitting Projects-Betty’s Upper Westside Afghan

Creative Inspiration: Afghans Samples at Knitty City 

 

Creative Inspiration: Afghans Samples at Knitty City

Before the pain of The Point’s closing could sink in, I dropped by Knitty City to hear Betty talk about her afghan. One thing that Knitty City does a wonderful job is displaying samples of various knitting projects as well as colorful swatches to entice you to use the fibers.

I arrived just in time to see Betty proudly displaying the beautiful piece which now covers her bed. Being late to the presentation, I didn’t get the full details about the original of the project. 

While Betty had started with a rough idea of the color scheme, she modified it on the fly and added various squares as she wanted to try new things. There are two squares, one with a B for Betty and one with a D for Dick, her husband. The square that caught my attention was the one with the state of New York. Betty got the graph of the state from a playbill! Since Betty doesn’t like intarsia, the color work is embroidered not knit. 

 

Betty explaining afghan squares in detail at Knitty City

Betty explaining afghan squares in detail at Knitty City

Betty's show & tell afghan at Knitty City

Betty's show & tell afghan at Knitty City

To create a sense of unity, Betty framed each square with a mitered garter stitch border. Further, to create a more sturdy blanket and reduce wear and tear on the seams, she did a three needle bind-off so that it created an artistic border ridge on the good side. 

While I find the idea of knitting an afghan daunting and likely to cause me to stop knitting, I think that this approach of creating multiple areas where the knitter can test new formats and/or have a small area to experiment is a great idea. I’ve been keeping my swatches of various sizes and colors in hopes of one day seaming them together.

BTW-There’s a great write up in the current issue of Vogue Knitting about Knitty City.