I went digging through my closet this morning and found the missing yarn. This means I can finish the sweater and decide on its future.  This should be great news except for the fact that when I found it I thought of a shawl I started last winter and how I haven’t seen it around lately….. believing that the knitting elves have taken it to finish it for me is probably wishful thinking. If they didn’t finish the cardigan, why would they bother with a little shawl?

I managed to get my Etsy site up and running. Etsy has certainly improved – and grown – since I used it to sell my quilts several years ago! I will be adding new yarns and other goodies every day, probably one every morning and one every night. That is the best way to stay visible in the fast moving world of Etsy. If you don’t see something you love there right now, just keep checking every couple of days and something will turn up! Who knows, if I decide that the Rainbow Squares Around cardigan just isn’t me any more, I might list it on Etsy.

Here is the link – Shantiknits on Etsy  I am already thinking ahead to my next dyeing spree so please let me know if there are particular colours or yarn weights you would like to see!


what’s another seven years of sitting on the shelf?

I haven’t been online much lately as if every coughing fit was a skein of yarn, I could knit my family a house cozy for Christmas this year. Having asthma and a cold and a damp, mildewy kind of fall is a vert bad combination. The cold is long gone but my stomach muscles have been getting quite the workout for the past few weeks with all this coughing.

This cough has been keeping me up at night so lots of knitting is happening. I started the Squares Around cardigan about seven years ago and knit like crazy for a couple of weeks and then put it in the closet for some reason. I have no idea what it did to get itself banished like that but I pulled it out yesterday and realized I only have about five more inches to knit, the button band and then a little steeking before it is ready to go. This sweater could be on my back before December. Steeking scares most people because that is when you cut holes in your knitting to make room for the sleeves and for your head to go through – and to make the sweater a cardigan instead of a pullover. I admit that it did have me sweating the very first time I did this to a sweater but now I kind of like it. It means I get to knit in the round (speed knitting!) for the entire sweater and then just pop the pieces and spaces in where they need to go at the end. It is my version of living dangerously.


I have one problem with this sweater and it isn’t the cutting and it isn’t even the fact that I am not sure I love this pattern or style the way I did seven years ago when I cast on for the sweater. It is that seven years have gone by and I can’t exactly find all of the yarn I need to finish it. The two colours I was using for the row I stopped at were still attached to the sweater so I definitely have those. I found two other colours of the same yarn (Philosoper’s Wool 2 ply) and so I have been able to carry on into the next section – but nothing else. I have searched through my stash and I am worried that this means I have a stash of yarn so secret even I don’t know where it is or else I forgot what the yarn was for and either gave it away or knit it into something else. I can do five more rounds before I will have to stop again and come up with the rest of the yarn to knit the last few rounds of brightly coloured squares and the rainbow button band or else the sweater will have to return to its shelf until I come up with more yarn.

Just how long is the shelf life of a sweater-in-progress?

fresh from the dye pot

My task tonight is to come up with a label design for this lovely mountain of yarn I have been dyeing over the past couple of weeks. I also want to make a light box so I can begin taking better photographs. My ipod is great for taking spontaneous photos but it really doesn’t capture colours all that well. Nevertheless, here is one picture just to give you a taste of what I have been up to.

I have learned so much doing this. Now it is time to deliver some of this wooly loveliness to the Old Mill in Paisley for sale and to set up a new shop on Etsy to offer some online. I would love, love, love to do this full time but we’ll see. There are so many independent dyers out there already. If I get a good response to this batch I will take it to the next level. If not, I have lots of pictures to remember what a great time I had this fall!