The Whole Vacation Thing

As I mentioned in passing yesterday… I am one of those people who is at the airport WAY earlier than they need to be, with enough supplies to survive in 99% of Earth’s conditions for at least a couple days. I’m going to lay out what my packing process looks like for those of you who are either interested or keen to have a laugh.

Travelling with Knitting

First of all this process is by no means perfected. I only started traveling in the end of 2013, that was my first ever airplane ride! I definitely packed a lot of things I didn’t need for a week trip to Chicago. Paul had to remind me that I was probably going to buy a fair amount of yarn and needed space to bring it back. At which point I looked at him with no small amount of horror. I had almost forgotten to leave space for yarn. No good could come of this so I decided to be much more careful about my packing.

Travelling with Knitting 2

First of all, I try to roll all my clothes before I place them in my bag. I think about the weather, what it could be, what it is unlikely to be, and just pack for everything. We went camping a lot as children and that was the theory behind packing for a camping trip. What you need to survive anything.
Second of all, I try to imagine the things that are okay to forget. If you’re going somewhere with drug stores, then it’s probably okay not to bring one of everything in your medicine cabinet. If you can reliably buy antacids and Band-Aids, I’m not too concerned.

Knit in Public-0611

A ‘busy bag’ aka, yarn and stuff. I wrote a post a while ago about how I always pack way too much yarn for projects that I could probably start while on vacation. I think about the trip there and if I will end up sleeping or not. I ALWAYS plan to sleep, but don’t always end up sleeping. I also think I will have much more time for sitting and doing nothing than I end up. Although, when we went to Cuba it was the wet season and we spent more time than I thought we would indoors. I don’t bring anything too complicated, just something to keep my hands busy. Usually socks, as I know you are all excited about!
I do all of this, 3-5 days before the trip and plan to throw more things in as I think of them. I usually leave this bag in our spare room or on the floor in our bedroom (although this encourages kitties who think they’re going to travel). If I think of something I’ve forgotten I throw it in! Repacking at the end and taking out things I know I am not going to need!

Kitchener Waterloo Knitters Fair Re-cap

I will admit right now that I took EMBARASSINGLY few photos. Everyone was so busy from beginning to end that I didn’t even think about it until I sat down to write this post. Overall I would say it was a good time. I would say it doesn’t really feel like Fall is on the way yet without the K/W Knitters Fair happening. It makes me feel warm inside and gives me the need to knit ALL THE SWEATERS!

KW Knitters Fair 2015-4101

The show was Saturday September 12th, so on the Friday, Paul and I drove down to drop off some of the show things and set up the tables. I had been contemplating a change in the way the booth had been set up. I got some really great advice from the Crochet Crowd guys to make it easy and accessible. Last year there was no small amount of tripping and attempting to get out of the way, our booth was so packed at times. I wanted to make it more inviting. We ended up setting the tables up around the perimeter of our booth and boxing ourselves in. That way people would be able to browse around the outside edges and any helpers would be on the other side.

KW Knitters Fair 2015-1720

Lisa and Christine were there helping me out. Lisa stood around the isle the whole day knitting a sock from the rainbow self-striping, psychedelic onyx. This was really amazing and we actually sold out of the rainbow yarn! There were only a few skeins left of the self-striping as well, we came very close to selling out of those, but as Paul would say ‘there are worse problems to have.’

 

One thing that sold really REALLY well was the colour Rule the Night. A couple customers had mentioned it looked like Laurier’s school colours, and that totally wasn’t even on purpose. It wasn’t until later, when I got home and looked it up, I realized that Laurier is actually IN WATERLOO. I knew it was close, but I guess it just never connected in my head that it was RIGHT THERE!

KW Knitters Fair 2015-

I saw a LOT of familiar faces and finally connected some usernames to faces. On twitter or Ravelry it’s easy to start communicating with others and never actually meet them. I am on quite a lot of the forums on Ravelry and sometimes it feels like a know people, but it is always great to meet face-to-face. I got to see some finished object photos, which I ALWAYS enjoy! Two of which were the Rule the Night socks. It knits up really pretty.

We also got two new wholesalers if you’re looking for us in stores locally. We are still in Stix and Stones in the North Bay area. We were recently picked up by Creative Yarns in Scarborough and Knit House in St Jacobs. It’s all very exciting. If one of those is your LYS head over and check us out!

 

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I was so busy I didn’t get a chance to run around much, but I thoroughly enjoyed this show. I am already looking forward to next year. I am also really starting to prepare for Knit City in Vancouver; dyeing replenishment yarn, getting all the travel plans set and looking at a new self-striping just in time for Halloween. I am also looking at gradients, so you may see a little more of that here!

Technical Tuesday: Grafting with Double Knitting

At the Kitchener Waterloo show I had a great question. How to make an infinity scarf with double knitting and graft the ends together. I had never actually thought about how this would be done. Double knitting in itself is fascinating to me so I will post a few videos about the basics then talk about the advice I gave her!

The basic principle of double knitting is to get two right sides. If you search double knitting patterns on Ravelry there are all sorts of patterns for general double knitting, but there are also double sided colourwork as well! I think these patterns are really interesting and absolutely the coolest thing ever! I have a strong dislike for things that are extremely ugly on the wrong side.

This video is of a Kitchener stitch bind off. This will give the basic knowledge of a bind off used for double knitting, but what we are trying to achieve is a seemingly uninterrupted stitch all the way around. For example, if one side is blue and the other side is purple the stitches on your needle will alternate between blue and purple; every other stitch will be a different colour. I suggested that she separate out the blue and purple on two different needles. Do the same thing on both ends and graft the blue stitches to blue stitches and purple stitches to purple stitches.
I explained this the best I could at the show and I hope it worked out. I also thought this was an uncommon and extremely useful question!

Where did the Summer Go?!

I can’t believe it is September already and we are in the last weeks of summer, but at the same time… KNITTING SEASON IS UPON US! Knit fast and die warm! I was just reminded of this saying the other day when I saw a tote bag with a skull and cross bones and this quote. It was really fantastic.

What Happend to the Summer-3607

What have I been up to in knitting? Lots and lots of things apparently. I have cast on a few new socks, but this one I haven’t started knitting yet; there is something of a story to it. I saw this colour-way at Nerd Girl Yarns in Vogue Knitting Live Chicago 2013. There are ALL sorts of really fantastic colours corresponding to my favourite fandoms, but when we were in Chicago Paul and I really liked watching the show Supernatual. We had eventually grown apart from this TV show, as we tend to binge watch things once the season has ended. Preferably when the next season has started… I have this problem with patience. The colour-way ‘Gank Demons’ was A) an awesome quote from the show and B) in my favourite colours. I had it squirrelled away in my stash for a long time and came across it unexpectedly.

What Happend to the Summer-3606

 

I actually have two stashes, one is upstairs and classified as a ‘perhaps someday I will knit this’ and the other is much smaller and stays on the main floor next to the couch. This is a more immediate stash for things that have projects waiting and just need to be started. It IS a stash of it’s own because it is much larger than a small box next to the couch; trust me, it’s a small shelving unit from Ikea. I had moved all my random sock yarn into the ‘immediate stash’ area and randomly decided to cast this one on the other day. I ended up balling it and casting on, but no knitting. Come think of it, I might take it out and ball it into two separate balls for the sake of matching socks.

What Happend to the Summer-3863

If you receive the Stitch Please Newsletter, you will have seen the newest self-striping colour-way! I am calling it ‘A Study in Blue… and Black’. This colour-way always reminded me of the scarf Sherlock wears in the BBC TV version of Sherlock. The scarf it self isn’t striped, but it is blue… actually come think of it, these socks look nothing like that scarf. No idea why it makes me think of Sherlock, but I do love the books AND the TV show. I should really start doing more fandom colours, I always like to knit fandom colours with a fandom pattern while watching said show. It really instils the geekieness.

What Happend to the Summer-3830Yes that would be preparations for the Kitchener/Waterloo Knitters Fair!

That is all I’ve got for you today! I am going to need to start another bigger project, I am getting way too many socks on the needles at present. I am hoping to do a few rows on my grandmother’s sweater as well, but with show season coming up… who knows?! I would also encourage anyone on twitter to randomly tweet me to guilt me into working on my grandmother’s sweater. I think I just need a good kick in the butt to get moving on it!

Technical Tuesday: Kinky

If you have EVER ripped something out you will know the pain of attempting to knit with kinked up yarn. It changes your gauge; it fights back, over all, it’s just a pain to knit with. The yarn isn’t as appealing and this could easily cause you to loose steam in your knitting project.

The video above shows you how to fix a couple yards of kinked up yarn. If you’re anything like me, you won’t notice your mistake until you’re almost done and have to rip back through a hank and a half of yarn. On a bigger scale, that technique is not going to work.

There are so many things I love about this video, the name for one. How to straighten your Wiggle Wool; my love of alliteration never fades. Secondly, she tells you not to despair. It can be so frustrating attempting to deal with wool that isn’t cooperating. It made me feel a little less inept because she was having trouble winding it around her forearm. You know it was all sitting in a neat little pile, but it still tangled a bit!

If you have a niddy noddy you can do the above technique. They’re steaming to set the twist of their hand-spun yarn, but it will also get rid of the kinks in your yarn.
I hope the article title gave you a little thrill. I know it wasn’t quite as exciting as you thought it was going to be, but hopefully informative. Don’t forget that you can always put that yarn on time-out after you’ve straightened it out.