Janet's thread

A weblog, mostly about knitting but other topics appear

Models at the Yarn Store December 17, 2016

Filed under: Knitters,Knitting,Sweaters,Yarn shops — Janet @ 1:53 am

A recent trip to the local yarn store, The Tea Cosy, in Ballard, Seattle Washington

A feast of new yarns, patterns and models.

img_1959         img_1960

and here’s what I was wearing that day         img_1961

Fun shopping.


Compelling Reading May 5, 2011

Filed under: Autobiography,Books,Genealogy,Knitting,Sweaters — Janet @ 11:37 pm

  The Clothes on Their Backs by Linda Grant.

Linda Grant is an author that I like.  According to the Wikipedia entry she is a British novelist and occasional journalist.   i.e. She writes novels and occasional other pieces.  It is her novels that I have read mostly.  The novel pictured above I found on the shelves of Oxfam in Dundrum in Dublin and it has since been sitting on my shelf  or shelves on both sides of the Atlantic just waiting to be read.  It along with about 100 other books.  The line of “unreads” doesn’t seem to diminish at all although I am nibbling away at them.  The problem is I tend to keep buying more books before I have read all the ones I already have.

This book seemed to fit in with what I have been trying to write myself, namely the research into my family history.  So as a break from my writing and fiddling with photographs I spent an enjoyable hour or so finishing this Linda Grant book.  My family history doesn’t have much in common with Linda’s but still, the idea of memory and place and the confluence, if that is the right word, of family members all contribute to the inspiration for writing.

Here is the cover for the little booklet I am working on.  Inspired by Grandson Kyle’s family tree, that’s kind of the line I am taking.  Most of the material has already appeared in my blog posts under Family History.  I am just recrafting it for hard copy to be printed, probably for limited circulation to family members.  This is the spin-off from that autobiography I’ve written and have been trying to work up into more readable form.  In addition to The Miller Line and the Friend Line in the Genealogy I find that since I’m at the center of this little booklet and I do get married, now I have added The McKee Line – and I haven’t  written very much yet about the genealogy on that side of my life.  For Kyle’s project we did find quite a few photographs so I should be able to cobble something together.

And as part of this show and tell, I’ll show you my current knitting – another jumper.

  body of the jumper, on a circular needle size 3.25 mm.  2 strands of yarn, Socrates and a sock yarn of suitable colour – from the stash


THE SWEATER May 2, 2011

Filed under: Knitting,Knitting patterns,Sweaters — Janet @ 10:32 pm

Well, it looks as if it might be o.k.  I’ve done the neck ribbing and he’s tried it on.  Now to sew up a couple of seams and correct a few little blips which I have marked with contrasting markers.  I have an old set of instructions for sweater knitting.  Somehow I like the presentation and I have found the instructions to be tried and true.  How or where or when I acquired these sheets of paper, I do not know.

 one page of the instructions – from the Chamomile Studio, Rangeley Maine

  Hmm, looks as if something might have to be done about those sleeves.  At least he could get the sweater on over his head and the chest size seems to be all right.  I might examine the gussets to check on how roomy or not they have turned out to be. 

The knitting was all done on circular needles, including the sleeves.  However, at the wrist area I just knit back and forth on the circular needle until I had enough stitches to knit in the round comfortably.

  the sweater earlier this morning before I completed the neck ribbing.


Progress Report on the Big Sweater April 25, 2011

Filed under: Knitting,Sweaters,Yarns — Janet @ 5:32 pm

I’m trying to assess my progress on the big sweater.  I think I am on course and that the decreases on the yoke are o.k.  I’ll just keep going round and round decreasing 8 stitches every other row.  The directions I’m using say decrease until all the sleeve stitches are eliminated.  At present the sleeve stitches number about 60 on each arm/shoulder.  So I have quite a bit of knitting still to do.  I like the Socrates yarn I am using.  The plain colour is Socrates 30% baby alpaca, 30% merino woool, 20% bamboo, 20% nylon.  The colour strand could be Regia or Opal, which are sock yarns.  They are mostly wool with a bit of polyamid (a synthetic nylon?)


Sweater Knitting March 31, 2011

Filed under: Knitting,Knitting patterns,Sweaters — Janet @ 9:13 pm

  This is the sweater I am knitting for Ian.

  and here he is wearing a sweater from Fisher’s in Dublin – that’s the sweater I’m using as a guide for the one I am knitting.  I think I have a bit more knitting to do!

The yarn I’m using is lovely and soft, Socrates brand, and I’m using 2 strands. 

Readers know I like to read while I knit.    

     I have just finished a splendid book.  The Emigrants by Vilhelm Moberg.  Originally written in Swedish and published in 1949.  What a wonderful evocation of the emigrating experiences of a group of Europeans in the 1850’s.  They made up their minds, for various reasons, to emigrate from Sweden and make a new life for themselves far across the sea in America.  At the conclusion of this book, Volume I of a planned trilogy which turned into 4 volumes, they have at last reached the shores of America, New York, after a perilous voyage across the North Atlantic.  And this was before the days of steam so they were all cramped together in a sailing vessel.  These people many of whom had never even seen the sea before.  I look forward to Volume II, Unto A Good Land.

And I am considering my next knitting project after I finish Ian’s sweater.

  how’s this for a detailed pattern.  No knitting and reading at the same time for this one.


A Slight Detour December 5, 2010

I’ve been blogging about the genealogy and trying to get that sorted out but today I’m going to take a slight detour and maybe eventually even talk a bit about knitting.

Yesterday I went to an antique store (which incidentally is near the cat shelter we went to last week). On the way I saw a number of very happy looking cats sunning themselves and surveying the passing scene. Did they ever look content. I warned them about the dangers of busy roads and hungry racoons but they assured me that they were pretty savvy and were well able to look after themselves.

At the antique store I had my eye on a red chair which I thought would be a fun addition to our house. However, I was put off by the “vintage” signs which seemed to be everywhere. Well, I thought, all I had to do was find an old chair in a garage sale, paint it a bright colour, and then label it vintage. Should I do that or just buy the one that was already there. I decided to wait. But what I did find were some vintage postcards from the British Isles. There was something about this one of Victoria Avenue, Whitehead. That somehow struck a chord. It certainly looked like Northern Ireland but I couldn’t make out the postmark. The other cards in the group were dated around 1906 and the stamp is Edward VII so that was fine. Now Ian tells me that the postmark is Green Island and the card is written to an address in Scotland (Gorian? – hard to make out) And, click, Whitehead, north of Belfast and well-known to one set of outlaws and also to a new friend whom we met in Bangor Northern Ireland when we were going up there last year to visit Ian’s brother.

My other purchase in the antique shop was a crochet hook made from bone. Not that I needed a crochet hook but I just liked the idea of it – and the feel of it. I use a crochet hook to pick up dropped stitches so now I can use my “antique”, as opposed to vintage, crochet hook.

Now that leads me to talk of knitting, on which I have been steadily working. I have 2 projects nearing completion. Both sleeveless sweaters at this point. I’m not sure whether to add sleeves to the black one. I have taken pictures but they don’t seem to be appearing in my pictures library. It’s so annoying when there is a sort of dysfunction between the camera and the pictures library and wordpress. I’ll show you the knitting in due course.


Some Colours of March in Seattle March 31, 2010

Only a few more hours to post my colours of March, so here is my selection.  First, to the left – our new doormat

and below, a colourful sweater being modelled at the Whittier Elementary School Science Fair.

    The person who made the granny square sweater does not knit or crochet.  She is an expert seamstress and she made it from an old afghan and a knitted garment she found in a thrift store.  It’s called recycling!  I love it.

  my grandaughter Ashley’s science fair project – note Ashley is wearing a matching pink jersey and socks for the occasion.  Is that to match all the pink cherry blossoms in Seattle this month?

  with better weather the cycling season is beginning in earnest

  window display of old science fiction paperbacks in Ophelia’s Books in Fremont  – serious time for book browsing

  knitting with Franklin thanks to Renaissance Yarns in Kent, south of Seattle

  Colourful wall graffitti in Fremont

   one of the many mountains of papers from the unpacking

  beautiful flowers appearing everywhere

  and finally the fresh green of Spring


Unpacking a few treasures February 7, 2010

Filed under: Books,Knitting,Sweaters — Janet @ 3:21 am

Most of my unpacking seems to be devoted to lugging books up from the garage to stack them in the living room.  I think about 1/2 of our shipment was devoted to books.  And so far we don’t have any bookcases in the house.   Craft books, fiction books, non-fiction books, art books,  cook books, etc. etc.  I’m looking forward to making space so that I can actually get some book cases and position them appropriately. 

   2 treasures from my craft books – the book on the left, Rug Weaving by Margaret Seacoat, is a book I have had for a long time and I have referred to it over and over again.  The book on the right, Norwegian Knitting Designs, is also one I have had for a long time.  I sent away to Norway for it in the early 1970’s.  Just recently I knit a top down sweater and I used the instructions in this book to knit it.  I unpacked that sweater today also – here is a photo taken earlier in Dublin.  I made up my own Scandinavian type design.

And as if I didn’t have enough books already, I have also been buying a few new ones here in Seattle at The Secret Garden Bookshop and Half Price Books.

    Let the Great World Spin by Colum McCann – a very good book, woven around the Man on the Wire, Phillipe Petit who walked on a wire between the Twin Towers in New York in 1974.  We saw the DVD a few nights ago and I now I’ve read this book – really good.

   do you remember the Mills and Boon covers jigsaw which we did in Dublin a month or so ago – well, here’s the book to go with it.  A graphic design book published by the Princeton Architectural Press.  A great book of book covers – makes me look at book covers with a fresh eye.