Thursday, August 27, 2009

The Great American Afghan

This is the project I am so excited about. It's called "The Great American Afghan". You can see it all in greater detail if you go to If you click on the photo of the afghan on their website, you will be launched into a really nice video (with music no less!) so you can see each square in detail. There is also a quote from the designer of each square... comments about the inspiration for their particular square. My knit shop, Anne's Knit Shop, has a completed afghan on display. I have been eyeing it for months and also I've been flipping through pattern book. I've been knitting for just less than one year and I was just too worried I'd purchase all the yarn and get stuck and/or frustrated and the entire project would end up in a bag in the back of a closet. Imagine how excited I was when I learned my knit shop is offering a class on The Great American Afghan over the course of six months. We'll meet one time each month, which will give us time to work on the squares between sessions. And when we get stuck or frustrated, we have our instructor to get us through the rough patches. Right now the course instructor is working through each square. She says since the pattern for each square is written by a different person... no two bobbles are made in the same way! It should be fun. I am sure I will learn so much from this project! I still like the square with the crab the best. I wonder if I'll still feel the same way when I finish that square?

It's going to be such a difficult choice!

Today, while my knitting group was knitting at Anne's Knit Shop (we meet there every Thursday), I took a break from my cabled strip for my afghan and browsed the Cascade 220 Superwash to see if I could settle on a few colors for The Great American Afghan... my class starts in mid-October! It's going to be so incredibly difficult to pick the yarn. The class instructor suggested I pick about six colors; she's an artist and she says she'll help me pick if I get stuck. I am partial to the heathered yarns, much like I used in my felted bag pictured here. Once I decided to focus on the heathered yarns, I was afraid to bring in color which was not heathered. I tried out a cream yarn and a really bold burgundy and it's amazing how just bringing in one color or subtracting one color can really make all the colors pop! I am not gifted with colors... I think that can really make or break the entire project. I am often fascinated how quilters do amazing things with colors, prints, fabric selections... I have so much to learn!

Poor lonely sock!

These are the socks I finished (I gave them to my Mom because I knew no one would appreciate a hand knit pair of socks as much as my Mom! After all, she is the one who started me on my knitting craze....) This is the second pair of socks I made. After that, for some unknown reason, I seem to have lost steam. I started my third pair of socks right after I finished this pair... and now I am left with this one lonely unfinished sock...

I have been working on this sock since July (or June?). I do not like the heel as much as the other socks I have made. Maybe I should rip it back and use the heel design I prefer better. But this is just part of what's knitting...

Baby sweater in progress!

I have too many projects in the works. This is a baby sweater (for a one year old approximately). The pattern is from Bernat and the yoke is made out of Baby Jacquard. The lower body and the sleeves will all be knit in just lavendar. The yoke has a picot edge which is a new technique to me. My mom started this pattern (all in Baby Jacquard) when I was visiting my folks in Oregon. She gave me the idea of just using the Jacquard for the yoke and it was such a great idea, I just had to try it! Both sides are not perfect matches, but the Fair Isle fake out is a cool effect! I call the Baby Jacquard "magic yarn"!

Lap Afghan in Progress

I am working on an afghan for a family friend, Shirley. I am using two separate cables, both found on The cream colored yarn is being knit in the "Cable Scarf" pattern and the sage green colored yarn is being knit in a pattern called "Sutter's Mill". The yarn is worsted weight (Plymouth Encore: part acrylic and part wool... washable!) and I am using two strands of yarn at a time so it's knitting up a bit more quickly. I plan to alternate the stripes... cream, sage, cream, sage, cream. It will be a lap afghan. So far so good!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

My first blog... my first post! This is fun!

Yarn, beautiful yarn! This is the first yarn I ever splurged on... Cascade 220... eight skeins to make a big felted bag. My first and only felted project. The bag turned out bigger than I expected but I keep washing it and it continues to felt/shrink ever so slightly each time! I am contemplating using colors similar to these when I make the Great American Afghan. I like these heathered yarns. BUT I plan to use the Superwash yarn for the afghan.