Foggy fall morning


Fall paddles are some of the best kayak times on Long Lake. These photos were taken early in the morning in late September, while the water was still much warmer than the air. The sun was partly obscured. We had the lake to ourselves. Even the two guys who fish so avidly in their maroon and gray Lund weren’t out yet. Belly Button Island was all spiffed up in a cloud of lake fog, looking something like the island in that early computer game, Myst.

This weekend, October 27th and 28th, we were out in the chilly morning (34 degrees) for what may be our last paddles of 2013. No fog today, except what we generated with our breath!

Back in late September, this gull seemed to be enjoying not having any competition for his perch. This late October morning, as with most mornings, a gull sat on the stone mound as we paddled quietly by. The adolescent loon is still on the lake, hopefully growing strong for his better-be-soon flight south.


Pair of antelopes

This is Kellly McClure’s Antelope Hat. It’s a free pattern available on McClure’s blog and on Ravelry. It’s shown here in the beanie version, knit in seriously soft Mirasol Miski. It’s 100% llama and 100% great to work with. My two modifications for this version were an extra knit row between the colors, to avoid having two-color stitches facing forward, and a traditional sewn picot edge replacing McClure’s no-sew version. The hat even has interesting crown decreases that emphasize the yarn over placement.

This is the slouch version of antelope knitted in Malabrigo merino worsted in the azul profundo colorway. The slouch uses three sets of the pattern repeat instead of the beanie’s two.

A quick, satisfying knit. I completed both of these in a weekend. This version uses McClure’s no-sew picot. You knit a few rounds, knit a knit two together, yarn over, round. Then you reach down basically to the first round, on the inside, and knit a purl bump in with the knit stitches on the needle to create what I know as a “welt” and what now is often called a “tuck.” This technique has a tendency to curl when used on an edge. My curl mostly steamed out.

Now for the naming question that I habitually ponder. Why is this the antelope hat? According to Wikipedia, Antelopes are all the members of the Bovidae family that aren’t sheep, cattle or goats. My hat isn’t a sheep, a cow or a goat so that must explain why my hat is like an antelope. Most antelope are native to Africa. Perhaps this extra warm hat would be a good one to pack for my next safari. Antelope have well-developed molar teeth on account of being cud-chewers. Maybe the very regular pattern of holes looks a bit like strong teeth have bitten through the hat in nice even rows. Or could it be that we are seeing hoofprints in the snow where the antelopes have galloped through?

I really like this hat! Great pattern and so generous of McClure to release it free. I would not poke fun at the hat even one teensy bit. But, it is an odd name and it is fun to contemplate the whys of oddly named patterns.

Sweater dishcloth

Cute little sweater. Right? Wrong. This is Heidi Sunday’s sweater dishcloth, available for download here on Ravelry. It has most of the features of a short-sleeved cardigan. Except it has no back and instead of wear it you can scrub dirty dishes with it.  It is shown here in Lily’s Sugar ‘n Cream in the potpourri ombre colorway.

Why knit dishcloths and facecloths? To try new techniques. For some quick gratification. To fancy up a dirty job. To amaze and dazzle. Or, as here, to give some fellow knitter a good chuckle. 78 knitters on Ravelry have completed and posted this cutie on their project pages. 185 of us have the project in our queues and plan to knit it someday. I had a blast knitting it!


Full moonset on Long Lake

The full moon, late at night, was so bright and the sky was so clear that we were tempted to paddle around the lake. We didn’t, but it was tempting. We decided to wait until morning.

At 6:30am, as we readied for a morning paddle to Ghost Bay, the full moon was still putting on quite a show. We paddled out while the moon was setting. Moon set and a light breeze sent moonlight to dancing on the lake. And then came sunrise.

Fun with triangles hat

This new hat pattern is from Linda, of Knitwise Design: Fun With Triangles. It’s available for download at the Knitwise Design Ravelry store. I was one of six test knitters on this pattern and every one of us had a blast! One of the testers, who knitted hers in lovely jewel tones of yellow-gold, purple, garnet and emerald, said her daughter was refusing to take it off and planned to sleep in it.

Knitting the small triangles goes very quickly and it’s very addicting. “Bet you can’t knit just one!” You get the eight of them completed lickedly-split and, of course, the rest of the hat is a breeze. I like to make warm wintry hats in colors that remind of spring, so I choose colors of Plymouth Encore that make the hat look like a decorated Easter Egg. One knitter chose subdued tans and brown and the hat turned out very classy. Some knit it up in bright shades and every hat looked great.

Linda gives the gauge in stockinette at 5 stitches per inch. But you’ll also want to measure out your first triangle and compare it to the schematic she supplies because if your gauge in garter stitch is off the band won’t turn out to be the desired length. Of course, that’s not all bad. Just knit another. Because one thing we knitters know is that some head will be just the right size to wear whatever we knit.

The pattern uses worsted weight. It would be fun to downsize it with a sport weight or babyweight and see how this charmer would look on some wee one. I’m eyeing my stash of Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino to see what I might come up with.