Wednesday, October 16, 2019

While Miz Kittling Knits: My Life Is Murder

I probably threw you for a loop last week when I shared photos of needlepoint I'd done instead of knitting. I couldn't do that to you again, so we're back to knitting in a very big way.

I don't like to sew, so that's why you haven't seen photographs of sweaters I've made or anything that requires stitching various pieces together permanently. I've been knitting little things and testing my skills as a seamstress in case I want to branch out into sweaters and the like, but there's no great urgency. There might be if knitting were the only pastime I had, but--hey-- this is a book blog, so you all know I have more to do in my spare time than knit!

I'm also the type of knitter who does this to relax. I have two friends who are so skilled! They churn out a ceaseless line of socks, sweaters, baby outfits, and the like. It's relaxing for them to work on something that's a challenge. I think I could only be like that if I didn't have another portion of my brain watching television and trying to identify a killer. It's nothing I'm going to worry about because our brains are all wired differently, and I'm going to concentrate on what makes mine happy.

For Daisy
This summer saw me complete two big projects. One was an afghan for my niece, Daisy. It's done in a simple garter stitch. It's the yarn that's special. It's Lion Brand Homespun Thick & Quick super bulky acrylic in a colorway called "Purple Haze." (Purple is her favorite color.) The photo doesn't do the color justice. It changes hue according to the light, and that yarn is so soft and thick and snuggly and warm! Yes, I took it for a test snuggle and couldn't stay under it for long. This is going to be perfect for colder weather, and I really need to find a box that's the right size so I can get it mailed to her. The only problem with something like this is the cost of postage to the UK. I might have to float a loan!

The other really big project I completed this summer was an afghan for a very dear friend who lives in Seattle. Now... I do something my mother did when she knitted afghans: I make them sized according to the person who's receiving them, not according to what the pattern says. For the best snuggling experience, you should be able to fold the bottom of the afghan underneath your feet and ankles and still cover yourself right up to the top of your head. Daisy's afghan was a breeze because she's five feet nothing. Mike, on the other hand, is six feet four, so I made his afghan eight feet long.

This is also the first project I'm showing you that used a pattern that I bought instead of a freebie. The Big Book of Quick Knit Afghans contains twenty-four patterns that use double strands of yarn and big needles which means the projects will work faster.

The pattern I used is called "Tea Time," and called for two strands of worsted weight yarn and size seventeen circular needles. (Circular needles because the afghan was made all in one piece instead of strips that would need to be sewn together.) I kept the size of the needles, but I used two strands of bulky (one size thicker than worsted weight) Lion Brand Homespun acrylic yarn in a discontinued colorway called "Meadow."

I also conducted a test snuggle with Mike's afghan, and I don't think he's going to have any problem staying warm under his either! I happen to be a diehard fan of Lion Brand Homespun yarn for projects like these. It can't be beaten for warmth, softness, and washability.

I'm going to let you in on a little secret: Mike's afghan wound up being eight-and-a-half feet long. I wish I'd taken the extra time to drape it more artistically in the photo so the pattern would show up better, but I didn't, and I don't feel like wrassling it back out of the zipper case that it's in. Ready to take a look?

For Mike

Almost ready to be mailed

Mike chose the pattern and chose the yarn as well, so I certainly hope he likes it!

Now it's time to show you one of the programs I watched while I was knitting like a fiend on these afghans.

Set in Melbourne, Australia, here's a summary of My Life Is Murder:

"Fearless and playful, she acts on instinct; both avenging angel and a bit of a shit-stirrer; deeply empathetic and blunt to the point of rudeness. And with a deeply irreverent sense of humor to boot. Other than the fact her husband died a few years ago, very few people know much about Alexa or why she left the force, rendering this woman a mystery in and of herself. And Alexa can't resist a mystery, so when former colleague and long-time friend Detective Inspector Kieran Hussey asks her to 'consult' on his trickier cases, she seems reluctant. But in truth, she can't resist. Joining Alexa to solve the unsolvable is the bubbly, sarcastic, ambitious and grounded, Madison. A true extrovert, Madison works as a Data Analyst for the Police and is on hand at Alexa's call to do what she does best."

First off, this series is the straw that broke the camel's back. Lucy Lawless's character is named Alexa Crowe-- ALEXA-- and the other characters couldn't seem to talk to her without constantly calling her by name. Denis's poor little Amazon gizmo was having a nervous breakdown every night I watched so her name was changed.

I have really enjoyed this series and not just because I get to listen to Aussie accents and soak up Aussie scenery. My Life Is Murder is light and not really difficult for the little grey cells, but it certainly is fun. I hope there will be a second season so I can watch more.

Now I'm off to see how quickly I can finish knitting a Dia de los Muertos project. Hmmm... perhaps I should watch Coco?


  1. Ha ha ha! Big laughs about Alexa freaking out about hearing Alexa's name. That must havw been a riot. Glad there was a name change.

    Those afghans are beautiful and perfect for winter weather. The colors in Daisy's are lovely, as from what I see, even if it differs a bit. And Mike's afghan, at 8 1/2 feet may set a record. Is that a cable knit?

    I cannot knit. It just isn't one of my skills. But I do enjoy looking at these afghans. I'm sure the recipients will be very happy and warm all winter.

    1. It's not a cable pattern, Kathy, it's a basketweave pattern.

  2. Those afghans are gorgeous, Cathy! And I couldn't agree more; we're all wired differently, so it makes sense for us all to do what works for us. And your knitting really is lovely. I'm going to have to try to catch some of My Life is Murder, too; it does sound good.

    1. I've been enjoying it, although I don't think I would want to be one of Alexa's friends. She tends to take advantage.

  3. The afghans are beautiful! Love the purple! I treasure an afghan my great aunt made me when I was young.

    1. Recently I've been using the very first afghan my mother ever knit. They can hold so much love.

  4. Love the afghans, especially the purple one which is my favorite color. Every time I see one of your creations it makes me miss my mom. She loved to sew, knit, crochet...

    1. I have a lot of memories wrapped up in watching the women in my family make beautiful things.

  5. I love both those afghans and am in awe at your skill. I have no skills in that area at all. I've tried and trying to learn just made me nuts and it was not relaxing at all. I'll keep that TV series in mind for watching next summer.

    1. I learned a long time ago: anything that drives you nuts, drop immediately! LOL


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