Monday, August 29, 2005


Knitting Demonstration at the California State Fair

It was fair time again here in Sacramento, so again, our local Guild demonstrated knitting at the California State Fair. We had a great display area set up in the Creative Arts building, and we had guild members there to knit in public and give FREE KNITTING LESSONS! As usual, it was hot as heck and the crowd was pretty light because it was 2 weekdays, but it still was good fun.

My sister came up from Southern California and she learned how to knit with us! BUT I found out that my grandmother had taught her how to knit during one of my sister's private "theraputic" stays with my grandmother (my grandmother lived at the beach and my sister needed fresh moist air for her dry skin)!!! I never ever saw my grandmother knit!! I knew she did because she knit a sweater for my sister, but she made such a big deal about it and it took her 2 years so I never thought to ask her to teach me. Now 40 years later I'm finding out that my sister knows how to knit! Well, I put needles into her hands, showed her the knit stitch - and she takes off! See the picture of her knitting - notice how much she did???

My sister DANA KNITTING at the fair

Well, I also had my young friends with me so we rode a lot of the carnival rides. This old broad went round and round and upside down and everything! And I wasn't even stiff the next day! Such a blast.

I started the Banana Silk Shawl at the fair - took me 4 swatches with 4 different needle sizes before I settled on a US size 13. Knits up real fast compared to the baby sweater.

Knit on,

Wednesday, August 24, 2005


Dale Norgi


Finished the LAST TRAIN!!

Well we did it! We finished the last of 22 Siemens Light Rail Vehicles for the city of St. Louis. Here we are (Sam the Project Manager and me the Commercial Project Manager) standing on the rail flat car this morning.

It took hundreds of people and some exceptional efforts on the part of the production crew and material expeditors, but she's a beauty.

Don't you think it would be way cool to commute to work on this - you can knit! I think thats the best part about public transportation - being able to relax and knit, read, or just daydream.

I'll be posting an update on the Dale baby sweater this evening from home. I'm ALL DONE with the knitting and am now ready to steek (eek!) and tack up the picot hems, oh and knit the little neck band and placket. Good thing too, the baby is already 2 weeks old -

For those of you who live in the Sacramento Area - there will be a "Knit for her Cure" event up at Filati's Yarns in Rocklin on Saturday, September 24th from 10 to 5. Come join in - all proceeds from kit purchases are donated for cancer research.

Knit on...

Sunday, August 14, 2005


Palm Desert in August???

Well, here I am down in Palm Desert California in August!! "Ya gotta be NUTS" I keep saying to myself. But, I had some family business down here to take care of that just couldn't wait until the temperatures were more appropriate for human life. Visited my mom in the nursing home yesterday - it's amazing how soft and wrinkle free your skin becomes when you're NEVER outside in the sun!! Even so - I'd rather have all my marbles and life with wrinkles than exist in some sort of demented la-la land. Poor thing - she was such a bright woman - Phd and all.

Life is wierd here - you just dash from one air-conditioned space to another. I can understand why the snowbirds like to come to the southern desert during the winter months - it can be quite pleasant. I used to drive down here when I was a teenager and sunbathe naked up in Whitewater canyon to get a headstart on the summer tan. But during the summer it is miserable! It's insane how much water they dump on the golf courses!

Anyway, I'm making great progress on the Dale baby sweater - have the body and one sleeve done. Just started sleeve #2 last night and still having fun. The baby boy who will receive it was born last week, but I'll have some time to finish as it is a rather large size 6 months - more like a 12 month sizing. Plus, it is summer (duh!) in the Northern Hem so it will be just fine.

Sorry - no pics as I'm travelling, but I'll get some up after tonight when I return to Northern Calif and home. Yes, I know, it is HOT up in the Sacramento area too - even the same hight temperatures, but at least up there it cools off at night so there is some relief!!!


Wednesday, August 03, 2005


Dale Norgi & Banana Silk

Progress check on the Dale of Norway baby Norgi sweater I've been working on. I've made it to the bottom of the center placket steek and am beginning to work the yoke patterning which is slightly different than the main body.

So far I've found 2 sections of errors in the pattern chart. Both are around the mirroring of the center front patterns so they pop out at you - well to me at least. I scrutinized the pattern booklet and whatta you know - one of the samples was knit complete with errors! I guess someone just blindly followed the chart. Well, they may have been instructed to do so - I've done some pattern testing knitting in the past and sometimes they don't want you to change a thing. Anyway, I don't think a baby would notice the small out of balance design - or even most parents for that matter. I'm really enjoying working with the Dale of Norway Baby Ull again - it's really soft and works up pretty fast given that I'm on US size 2 needles.

Here's a picture of the yarn made from banana trees. It is quite soft and VERY HEAVY. I'm thinking that it would stretch/sag like cotton when knitted up just from its own weight. Has anyone knit with this stuff yet?

As I'm planning to knit a shawl for my sister, sagging won't be much of an issue. Except if it stretches longer than her 5 foot 1 inch height!!!

I'm thinking that I should try a size US 10 to start with on my first swatch. I don't want it to be too thick and heavy to wear.

These are pictures of my new way to store and carry circular needles. When I was back at Knitting Camp, several of the other folks there had these fishing bait holder totes for their needles. You can buy extra pouches for them. I got mine from Bass Pro Shops online - it's smaller than some of the others. But it works pretty good!

Of course, I wish they wouldn't put their hokey label on everything!!! Maybe I could cover it up with something. I do fish, but I really don't want to be a walking billboard for a fishing supply company.

See what I mean? Come on - are my circular knitting needles really "Extreme"????

Tuesday, August 02, 2005


TRAIN Knitting WhoooHooo!

WhooHooo...Check out our transportation to the TKGA Fiber Fest in Oakland California a couple of weekends ago!

Amtrak sponsored a "knitting train" for us and provided goodie bags, raffle prizes, and escorted service to connect from the Amtrak train to the local BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) system. BART dropped us off right at the entrance to the convention center where the magic of the TKGA Market awaited us.

If you look closely you can see me on the right hand side holding up my Dale baby sweater that I was working on for the 1 1/2 hour trip from Sacramento to Oakland. Front and center is Lorna Miser (founder of Lorna's Laces).

No, I didn't win any raffle prizes - oh well. Not sad for long because I was able to shop the market soon after the train ride. I found some amazing yarn made from BANANA TREES! It looks just like the sari silk from Nepal. I'll try to remember to post a picture of it. I bought several skeins ($6 per skein) and am planning to knit a shawl for my sister who is quite allergic to wool.

The Market was about half the size of the Stitches West Market that was here in February, but there was still plenty of yarn to fondle and other knitting stuff to see. Some of the vendors seemed to appear at the last moment - no fancy booth supplies, just cardboard boxes of imported sari silk & banana tree yarns at excellent prices. Well, I guess there's something to be said for low overhead.

As I've been de-stashing in preparation for our sailing adventures, I didn't pick up anything but the banana tree yarn. I still have way too many projects going on at the same time now. And I have to get ready for the Fair Isle in-depth class that I'll be teaching this coming fall.

Back to "work" at the paying job....

***Pictures courtesy of Amtrak Capitol Corridor****

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