I have been having a spasm of startitus. This is partly because slogging through the Fluttery Top is doing my head in. Yes, I want to finish it so I can wear it but at 10 rows per inch and 8 inches to the bottom… My startitus is also due to the fact that I am about to travel for two weeks. I need traveling knitting and something to keep my hands occupied when I am with my family.
So I started a bear for the Mother Bear Project. I am not following any of the patterns – the official one is knitted back and forth from toe to toe and requires lots of seaming. There is a semi-official one at Ravelry, which is top down: Magic loop cast on at the crown of the head and then work downwards. I got halfway through this version of the sweater when I realized that I had cast on half the number of stitches I actually needed, and I didn’t like how it looked, so I ripped out and thought again. The Campesino Doll Purse, which I knit for my niece at Christmas, was a similar design and some nice features such as the sweater ribbing being separate from the neck, hands and legs. So I started with the sweater, knitting it top up in the round. I did steaks for the armholes as it did not occur to me not to have holes there. For the head, hands and rest I will pick up stitches inside the ribbing. I hope to write the pattern out when I have finished.
My Baby Bear was turning out to be too complicated for travel knitting. So following the fine example of Jared at Brooklyn Tweed I started Grumperina’s Shifting Sands Scarf. I found some great yarn in my stash (Texas by Pine Tree Yarns in Sunset shading) which had enough yardage and I merrily cast on. Only to find, of course, that my gauge was totally off – I was getting 4 stitches/inch instead of 7 st/inch. I just read that, and after a few choice words I laughed. What’s a knitter going to do? Use size 2.5 mm to make gauge. I am finding that tiring enough for the Fluttery Top. So yesterday while at the hairdresser I frogged what I had started and cast on 32 stitches. I still have to check whether BA allow knitting needles.
I am also taking yarn to knit July’s Stitches with Style’s Wash Cloth-along. I am using Plymouth Yarns Jeannee, which I first used for January’s Sheep wash cloth. This time I have a pale variegated yarn (colorway 100) which will show up nicely with a modular pattern. Whether I actually stick to the modular dish cloth pattern given is evens on at the moment. Given my experience with modular knitting (e.g.), I doubt it! Shameless plug: I am teaching a course on basic modular knitting at Knitters Day Out in September if any one is interested: End of Advertisement .
I am still slogging away at the Fluttery Top and it/she  is beginning to look like something I can wear.
Of course, when I get to England, I will go yarn shopping – it is a given. Mum has already said she wants to get some nice new yarn and get rid of her old nasty yarns. Hopefully I can persuade her that knitting 4 st/inch is trendy and fashionable, despite the fact that she has always preferred thin yarns with many stitches/inch and then wondered why she never finishes anything and finds them hard to see. Also, unlike her daughter, she is a very tight knitter. I tried teaching her continental style, but I am not there enough to help her practice it.
 For anyone who is interested my math calculation went like this:
I was getting 12 inches for 52 stitches which was 10 pattern repeats. 12 into 52 doesn’t go, but 12 into 48 is 4, so my gauge is roughly 4 st/inch.
I wanted the scarf to be the same width as in the pattern (7″) so 7 x 4 = 28. However, the pattern has a 5 stitch repeat + 2. So I rounded up to 32 stitches.
Admittedly my gauge was slightly over 4 st/inch so I am probably going to end up with a slightly wider scarf but I do not mind that.
 Definitely becoming a she as she grows.
 And one on working with color.
 I just checked the website and they are both full. Wahoo !!! (eleventy ‘leven) !!! I could do a class for your guild or LYS if you are interested!