A Crazy Two Months, and Moving Forward

Wow! Has it been a while!! Well, I’m still here 😉

So, here goes:

3000+ miles of flying

+ 32 hours of travel time

+ Countless hours of shopping for a new home

+ Many beautiful memories along the way

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= Finally settling in Florida!!!

Yup! We’re here to stay! We had a great time while in FL!  And, lots of changes! But first, the fun stuff!  We had a great time roaming around the world at Epcot’s Food & Wine Festival! We went around about four or five times. I lost track, and we didn’t take as many pictures as we would’ve liked.  But the one that stands out: Me…. enjoying the champagne, a little too much! 😛

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We had a great time driving all over Central Florida, too.  While home shopping we made time to enjoy the quiet moments: walking around a lake in just a regular neighborhood, viewing the marina at St. Pete.. just taking in all the things we miss out on when we’re running around in our busy lives.

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And I’ll never forget that feeling of finally deciding on a home and signing off on it!

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The best part, of course, was having a bottle of wine later that night, under the stars on our soon-to-be lot…. all while watching the Disney fireworks! My beau is so romantic 😉


But I must say, during our “vacation,” I didn’t get much knitting done (as you can see above).  But now that all of the technicalities of home buying are out of the way, we’re getting settled, and I’m hitting the needles once more!

So, the little knitting I have done, include:

  • A cabled scarf, that’ll make a great Christmas gift

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  • I decided to add a fringe, which I cut down evenly

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  • And, I *started* a lace scarf for my mom…. which I ripped back, and decided not to continue… Anyone else have issues working with lace weight yarn?

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On the dyeing front:

I ordered a batch of worsted, 100% Merino wool in 218 yard skeins.  Little did I realize (and it’s entirely my fault), that they are *feltable* and not superwash.  It makes it a little more tricky to work with and care for, unless, of course, you want to felt your end project.  Which would make super cozy mittens, actually!

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  • I dyed up these two skeins as testers.  The yellow came out brighter than expected on the second skein.

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  • But the end results came out pretty good! This one definitely reminds me of sherbet! Yummmmm!

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  • And the bright yellow contrasts great with the violet color! This one is almost a dead ringer for Pointellist artist Georges Lemmen’s “Beach at Heist” (Belgium, 1891). It harkens those vivid dreams that you have when you’re super tired (from knitting all night, right?)

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Georges Lemmen  Beach at Heist  Brussels, Belgium 1891

Georges Lemmen’s “Beach at Heist” (Belgium, 1891)

  • Recently, I dyed up these two skeins… looks like spaghetti…

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  • Not sure of this colorway, but if it didn’t remind me of spaghetti, I’d like it much more haha

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  • For this one, I hand-painted it in a rosy pink and pale green…

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Still waiting for these last ones to dry up, so I can twist them up and….. list them! I’m really excited to be setting up my very first listings for my Etsy shop, opening soon!!!!!

I’m also waiting for some more dyes to arrive so I can get to making larger batches!


All of these changes have been amazing: moving back to The States, finding a new home, settling down, getting over the “starting over” mentality, finally getting to that wedding planning (that’s been put off for two years), dyeing my favorite yarns, and opening my own shop of hand-dyed yarns.  I’ve truly been blessed! And it goes to show, all that persistence, patience, and perseverance, really does pay off in the end!

I hope all of you are also making wonderful progress in your own lives, and that you enjoy every minute of it; because even if you’re having hard times, it can only get better.  Never give up on your dreams and your goals!

Even if you can’t see it right now, the sun is still shining above those dark clouds!

Love and many, many blessings!

Cynthia

“Challenges are what make life interesting and overcoming them is what makes life meaningful.” – Joshua J. Marine

Winter in South Africa and Free Shawl Patterns

Hello lovelies!

So, how many of you have a super long queue on Ravelry? Yup! That’s me over here, too! I can’t help myself! When I see so many beautiful, inspiring, awesome patterns, it’s hard not to wish to be able to make everything I find.

Lately I’m loving shawl patterns. There’s something magical about wrapping yourself up on a chilly day with your very own handmade shawl. Here in South Africa, it’s been an interesting Winter, with super chilly mornings, hot afternoons, and cool evenings. Obviously, it’s thrown me for a loop with the opposite seasons that I’m used to! And luckily since I’m on the coast, it’s not as bad as further inland. However, going to the beach still calls for a shawl, which makes it easy for when it warms up as the day progresses!

Perusing around Ravelry, I came upon the Now in a Minute shawl (below). As a novice knitter, this shawl doesn’t look too difficult to give up on, but difficult enough that I won’t get bored with the project.  And the crescent shape and cool edging makes it especially interesting!

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Also in my queue is the Bamboo Wedding Shawl (below). Can you say simple elegance? I love the chevron pattern, and it’s so simple that you can wear it with anything! From jeans and a t-shirt, to a little black dress with sling backs.

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For the crocheters out there, I’m loving Lisa’s Shawl (below)! And it looks fairly easy to follow, and…. it’s embellished with beads! How awesome is that? Have any of you tried adding beads to your work? I feeling that this pattern should be pushed to the front of my queue. What do you think? And, just like the Bamboo Wedding Shawl, you can dress it up, or wear it casually. The length is also great for breezy days at the beach!

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So, there you have it! My current faves from Ravelry!  Comment below, and let me know what your Ravelry favorites are.  Are there any that you’ve tried and loved or hated? More difficult or easier than you thought?  I’m always looking to add to my queue!

xo

Let’s Share on Facebook!

Hello my beautiful friends!!

Are you on Facebook? Now I am too!! Let’s share and inspire each other there!

Through Facebook, I hope to share with you:

  • Current patterns I’m loving… You can also check out my faves on my Ravelry page!
  • Current projects I’m working on… Which, of course, I will go more into detail here
  • Any other fiber related tidbits… From online yarn deals to hand dyeing and other misc projects

I hope to see you there! Don’t forget, you can also follow me on Twitter, Instagram, and I have several yarn/pattern related boards on Pinterest!

See you there!!

Yarn-aholics, Take Note!

Beautiful Chandi from Expression Fiber Arts is offering a $1500 Luxury Yarn Giveaway! Click here to enter! 

Expression Fiber Arts really helped me when I first started knitting. Chandi’s tutorials are easy and fun to follow, and her handspun yarns are A-MA-ZING!! A friend of mine orders from her regularly, so I’ve had the chance to feel the silky smooth decadence of her work.

Since I’m living here in South Africa, it’ll take forever to get some of my own (plus the cost of shipping!).. But I’ve decided I can’t go on without having my own, so I took the plunge and ordered a skein of her Mint Chocolate Chip Superwash Wool Lace.  I was lucky enough to order one of her tester skeins, so it was at a discounted price. Look how beautiful it is! I can’t wait!! Now to figure out what I’ll make with it!

 

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Expression Fiber Arts – Chandi

Knitting: Diamond Lace Scarf

Diamond Lace Scarf

I decided to finally start on a project for my future mother-in-law. I’ve noticed she loves wearing thin scarfs, and thought a lacy looking one would be fab to add to her collection.  Plus, I picked up this beautiful coral yarn from my local haberdashery (I didn’t even know what one was until I moved to South Africa).

This project is a combination of two patterns I took from the book “Little Book of Knitting.” I started with a regular double moss stitch, and started the lace pattern for the body of the scarf. I’m still trying to decide whether I should incorporate other patterns, or just keep it simple with the main lace. Once I’m finished, I’ll block it to make the eyelets more noticeable, and overall have more drape to it, instead of being thick and chunky.

Needles: US 6 straight

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For a list of my completed and current projects, click here. If you want to know the pattern, let me know and I’ll post a follow-up!