Thursday, September 18, 2014

End of Summer ...

Its been a while since I've written so I have a lot to share with you! The New Mexico State Fair is happening right now and our guild is always involved each year in displaying the knitted items that are entered for judging. I have been involved in the judging process for a couple of years now and am forever thankful to what I have learned and am learning from Carol Singletary. She is one of six knitting judges in the country certified by TKGA and we have been very fortunate to have her judge not only our State Fair but the Albuquerque Fiber Fiesta as well. I have begun the process to get certified as a knitting judge myself and greatly value what I have learned from Carol over the years. Next year the judging for the fair will likely be my responsibility. At any rate, after all the items are judged they need to be displayed in the cases for people to look at. The Guild starting doing this set up because when left up to the fair, they simply fold everything and place it in the cabinets. Incredible lace shawls get folded into a pile and no one can see the work. We started doing the set up so that the items could be shown better than in years past. We had at least 9 people turn up for set up which was wonderful because it seemed to be all rather last minute!


That's Lalie in the case! Her knees are young enough to be able to climb in there and help out. Our friend Venetia (please forgive me if I misspelled your name my good friend!) also helped out in the cases...


It was a good turnout for knitting items this year. I think it was only down slightly from last year. Venetia ended up the biggest winner of our bunch winning, I think, 3 blue ribbons as well as the Best of Show. She won Best of Show last year as well. She's a terrific knitter! There were lots of really nice things though. Stranded sweaters, beaded lace shawls, and large lace doilies too. The most frustrating thing about the Fair this year had to be the ribbons themselves. We were to have had them for placement when the items were judged but we didn't. We did the judging on a Sunday and the ribbons didn't come in until the first day of the Fair which was Wednesday. So, Mom, Betty, Dilshani and I went back down to the fairgrounds to go place all the ribbons. This is Dilshani inside one of the cases placing ribbons for us...


I love this girl infinitely!

The following Monday it was the guild's day to go and knit in public at the fair. Several of us sign up to go and take our knitting, along with some knitted items for show, and we knit in public at the Creative Arts building. We pass out pamphlets for the Guild and talk about knitting, etc. Here are some pics from that Monday...

That's Bonnie on the left, she's our guild president, Barbara in the middle and Eda on the right, our treasurer...

That's my Mom on the left and Lalie on the right...

Debbie is on the left, Roxane is in the middle and Kathie is on the right here...

The event wouldn't have been complete without a selfie of Mom and I!

All in all we had a good time on Monday. Trying to track where the ribbons were and when we would actually be able to get them on our knitted stuff was another story. 

Sometime about a week and a half ago I stumbled across a post on Facebook from the Namaste company. It was to notify people of their "Exclusively Eggplant" sale they were having at the moment. I knew nothing about it but was very excited! I have carried an eggplant Namaste bag for years now and love them. My favorite had been their largest bag, the Hermosa I think it is. Well, ever since they came out with the Poppins bag earlier this year I have been wanting it. Badly. I took this opportunity to get myself one directly from Namaste at 35% off the normal price! I was so excited when it arrived!


Now, I don't know about you but I have always used my Namaste bags as my purse. Primarily because I generally have a lot of crap that I carry with me. The Hermosa bag allowed me to also take knitting along with all my regular stuff. But this Poppins bag...I just really wanted one. There isn't any more to it than that. It has all the nooks and crannies on the side walls of the bag but no center divider, you need that space. Its lovely. I just love it, I really do. While I was at my LYS earlier this week for knitting, I remembered that they also had the Namaste Devin Wristlet in eggplant. I had been wanting to replace my wallet for some time and wanted something that if I was just popping into the store or the pharmacy I could just grab it instead of taking my whole purse. I gave in to temptation and bought it....


It fits nicely right into my Poppins bag and can just grab it if I want or need to. I really liked the idea of it and now that I have it I love it too. I am a devoted Namaste bag fan! 

I have finally gotten the matchy matchy sweaters to Alia and Savannah. I know many of you were looking forward to seeing the girls in them....


They came over on a Sunday, game day, and they are a Packer Family! This is why the sweaters are displayed over their jerseys! But they both fit very well with room to grow in both of them. I am pleased with that. 

Now, onto knitting! If you follow me on Facebook you know that I have started a new design. It took me a while to get it going though. The yarn that I intended to use just didn't work with the pattern. Neither did the next 2 yarns I tried. It was frustrating. It was the first time I had the problem of yarn not matching the pattern. Mom finally said to me...""you know..I think I may have something in my stash that may work for you." This is what she pulled out...


Isn't it gorgeous?!!! Its Dream In Color Everlasting Sock in the colorway Crisp. As I started to work with it I knew right away that it was going to work perfectly. Here's what it looks like when I had a little bit of it worked up...


I love it! I have working on nothing but this since I started it and its going pretty quick...


I am very excited about this design and cannot wait to finish it. But it will have to wait for just a few. A pattern I intended to write last year and didn't, and was ever so gently reminded by a good friend of mine because she still wanted the pattern, will come next. I will take a break from this shawl to get the pattern for Vanilla Worsted Fingerless Mitts written up.  Last year I made 14 pairs, yes 14 pairs, or these fingerless mitts as gifts for friends and loved ones. I will be making more of them this year as gifts again but first I need to get the pattern written. I promised my friend that I would order up some Malabrigo Worsted that day (which I did) and start the process. It arrived today and I will start on them this evening. Here is the yarn that arrived today...


I'm in a rather green phase now, I realize this! So Lynne, I am working on this I promise! Just like every other pattern I release I will announce it here on my blog and in my Facebook Group. If you are with me for the first time, thank you! And please feel free to join my Facebook Group Claudia Donnelly Designs. 

Miss Audrey Grace is doing wonderful. I captured this late the other night...

 
 As summer slowly slips away, the garden is starting to say goodbye. We have lots of sunflowers out back that have been looking beautiful lately. There was this particular bunch that had fallen next to the trunk of the tree making it look like they were growing right there out of the tree. And a small bunch on one of the rocks in the back yard. I mentioned them to Dilshani when she was over last week and somehow felt the need to take pictures of them before they were gone. This special bunch reminds me specifically of how our family and Dilshani's family have blended together as if it always were this way...


I look at this and think...the Tysons, the Karmels, and the Smiths..all together with the same roots and with a foundation a solid as this rock. I love this picture. 

As always, I would love to hear what you are working on right now. Until next time...Knit On!!

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Teaberry Crescent

I have anxiously been awaiting the release of this shawl pattern for quite some time. I am so excited about it! Designed exclusively with and for Phydeaux Designs, Teaberry Crescent was released last night!!! The photos on the Ravelry pattern page belong to Phydeaux, the following are mine...


This is such a delicate and feminine shawl reminding me of summer garden parties, tea with friends and little cucumber sandwiches. It is made up of a garter stitch body, which highlights the beauty of the hand dyed yarn, followed by a dramatic wide lace edging. It is listed as an intermediate level project because of the lace edging. I am in love with this dainty shawl. I hope you all love it as much as I do!

I have finished the matchy matchy sweaters for my Fairy Goddaughter Alia and her older sister Savannah! I love these little gems and cannot wait to see them on the girls...


The pattern is 'In Threes: a baby cardigan" by Kelly Herdrich. It is wonderfully easy to make and there are a million different ways to jazz it up if you choose. I went with a nice deep red color from Knit Picks called Currant. It is their Shine Worsted which I have used for all the baby sweaters I have knit this year. These two sweaters were number 5 & 6 in the baby sweater department this year and I just love them! Here is a close up of the buttons I used for both of them...


I will share pics of the girls in them as soon as I have some!!

I have two more patterns I am working on now! I should be able to get them both released by the end of the year and I am really looking forward to watching them come to life. Last year I released 8 patterns which, for me, was a productive year. I was hoping to see that many or more this year but there were things that came before designing this year. I did a lot of baby and kid knitting this year. I had friends having babies and friends of friends having babies. It was wonderful! I loved knitting every single one of them. Plus, having surgery and being sick and in the hospital for a long time also took up time where I just wasn't knitting at all. If I get 5 or 6 patterns released this year I'll be happy. As soon as I have progress worth sharing I will show you pics!

With the holidays fast approaching we are already starting to get ready. Next up is Halloween!! Every year my Mom gifts my Aunt, whose favorite holiday is Halloween, a new Halloween decoration or something Halloween for the house. Last year it was a big black spider with moving legs and my Aunt loved it! Mom orders these gifts from a catalog that has nothing but Halloween stuff in it...and 
I cant remember the name of it. At any rate, while she was shopping for my Aunt she saw something that she felt she and I absolutely had to have. Halloween Fascinators!!! There were 4 or 5 to choose from and they were all wonderful. I chose the one with bats and Mom chose the one with spiders. Here's mine...


...and here's Moms with the spiders...


Aren't they fabulous!!?? We cannot wait to wear them! We will wear all black, I will make sure my hair is freshly colored red as to match the red fluffiness on mine, and we will wear these all day for Halloween. We will also wear them for Beggars night because the kids will love them! We get quite a few Trick-o-Treaters where we live so it will be a ton of fun! 

Be sure to check out Teaberry Crescent on Ravelry here. I hope you are all having a wonderful afternoon and are knitting away on your projects. I always love to hear what you're working on if you want to leave me some comments! 
Until next time...Knit On!!