Thursday, September 25, 2008

House Keeping

Lately, I've had to remove posts and remove people from the blog membership. Let's try to keep this blog about the GAAA and knitting in general. Anything that I see as spam or inappropriate (offensive, political, etc) I will continue to remove and delete that person's membership.

If you think you've been deleted by mistake please contact me ASAP via email and we'll try to fix the situation. Hopefully we won't see anymore of this in the future and we can return to our knitting bliss!

How's everyone progressing? My GAAA is on hold until I finish my Christmas knitting . . .

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Square 6 - Vicki Sever

I've completed the Vicki Sever square, it came out lovely

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Square 5…finally

I didn't enjoy this square, took me ages to work the instructions out - I'd never done corners before and I'm dreading coming across the other squares that are worked in a similar way. This seemed to take ages to knit, thankfully tis done now!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Square 3

Finished Square 3 last night - wonder if I can keep going a square a day...hmmmm, I obviously have no life lol

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Square 2

Here is Square 2, I finished it several hours ago and have started the third square

Monday, September 08, 2008

I've finished my first square!

I FINALLY got around to starting this last night. Along with the aid of an insomnia attack, I managed to get my first square completed. I've decided to go through the book and do the squares in order.

Friday, August 29, 2008


This particular square had many different stitches to do in it: YO, CABLES, and BOBBLES etc... I enjoyed doing this square it was a lot of fun. One square done and about 20 more to go!!! I have chosen Wendy Sacks square to do next.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Alice Starmore Square

I finished the square inspired by Alice Starmore's Inishmaan sweater. It is from her book, "Fishermen's Sweaters".

I only have 3 more squares to go. The next square will be based on a pattern from my new book, "A Fine Fleece".

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

15 and16 Are Finished

I have finished the 15th square which was designed by Ada Fenick.

It was an easy knit on 5mm needles. I added two reverse stocking stitches between the garter stitches and the celtic braid on each side to give it a bit more width. Only 5 squares to go!

I'm quite pleased with the next square which I designed. The trailing leaves up the middle were surprisingly easy to execute. On the bottom left I went the wrong way with the second leaf so I just copied the 'design feature' on the top right.

These designs are from the Leisure Arts book "50 Fabulous Knit Stitches". The patterns of the square I'm currently knitting are also from this book - 2 types of trailing vines and leaves. I hope to finish them today.

Monday, August 04, 2008

Two Completed Squares

Here are my first two completed squares. I'm knitting my afghan with Plymouth Yarn Galway Highland Heather (made in Peru :-)) in a lovely pale green. It's 100% wool and I love working with it with bamboo needles. I invested in a more expensive yarn since this project is so much work (for me anyways!). I'm making it for my boyfriend and myself to commemorate our trip to Ireland last year that inspired me to try some Aran patterns that I was terrified of! These are Dana Hurt and Ann Strong's squares, and I finished Ginger Smith's square today as well, but it's being blocked. I was initially panicked that the squares were so narrow, but they've blocked beautifully to 12x12 so far. I'm even feeling brave enough to design a few squares of my own. I welcome comments, and any advice from you brave folks who have gone before me in this project!

Thursday, July 31, 2008

#13 and #14 - Done!

I finished the Meredith Morioka square on the GAAAA the other day.

Yesterday I finished knitting the Suzanne Atkinson square and finished sewing the i-cord sun rays onto it this morning. This square is VERY cute and was done on 4.5mm needles.

I really liked doing the tree and the bobbles were done using a different technique than I had ever used before. After k,yo, k, yo, k for the bobble, you don't turn but slip the stitches from the right needle back to the left needle. Then you k5, and slip them back to the left needle. Then ssk, k1, k2tog, and slip them back to the left needle. Then k3 and skip stitch 2 and then 3 over the first. From what I've read some people really do not like doing bobbles but I think they're fun. At the suggestion of another Ravelry member who is non-religious as am I, I omitted the steeple and cross. I moved the sun over to the left a bit and added a bird above the tree. Another modification I made was to do reverse stocking stitch on the triangular area of the top of the house front so it would look more like a house and not a church.

Now I'm ready to tackle the Ada Fenick square that has a tree, moss stitch clouds and a type of celtic cable up each side.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

And Another...

I finished knitting this square I designed. I'm not as pleased with the look of it as I was with the 'Knitting with Cables and Bobbles, oh my!' square but #12 is finished none the less.

I cast on 59 stitches and increased to 69 stitches. The centre pattern is the Filled Arrow Cable from p.202 of "Cables & Arans". The next pattern is Folded Cable (p.89) ascending on the left and descending on the right. The outer pattern is Garden Path Cable from p. 76. It didn't work out as perfectly mathematically so I added a few rows of reverse stocking stitch above the 4th arrow. The other two patterns were 6 stitches wide and I think it would have looked better if one had been a different width. There were 3 stitches of reverse stocking stitch between each pattern.

Monday, June 30, 2008

One More Square

I actually finished the Dana Hurt square before the one I designed. It's pretty narrow but is knit loose enough that it should stretch out nicely when I sew it into the afghan.

I'm about half done the next square I've designed. It's an easy pattern but I didn't really give enough thought about the patterns complementing each other so I don't think it looks that great. Oh well. It's the 12th square and I soldier on.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Knitting with Cables and Bobbles. Oh my!

I just finished the 10th square - one of my own design.

I wanted to do a square with lots of bobbles. I used my new "Cables and Arans" book from Interweave Press and selected three patterns with repeats that are multiples of 8.

I cast on 59 stitches. After the three ridges, I increased 10 stitches on the next right side row for a total of 69 inches. On the next row, the wrong side row, I did row 1 of the 'Cable and Dot' pattern in the center.

The center pattern is called 'Cable and Dot' and is found on page 82. It has a 15 stitch pattern with a 24 row repeat with row one starting on the wrong side.

The one out from it is called 'Cable with Bobbles' and is 9 stitches wide and has a 12 row repeat from page 50.

The outer pattern is 'Alternating Bobbles' and is 6 stitches wide with a 16 row repeat from page 189. I started the one on the left side at row 9 to mirror the one on the right.

So to create the right length square, and for the repeats to end in a good place, I needed 72 rows after the 6 garter stitch 'three ridges' rows. Thus creating 3 repeats of the center pattern, 6 repeats of the Cable with Bobbles and 4.5 repeats of the alternating bobbles.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Two More Squares

I finished the Ann McCauley square the other day using 4.5mm needles. It is 13.5" tall and only 9.75" wide in its relaxed state. It is pretty stretchy, however, so should widen easily to 12" and hopefully that will shorten it as well.

On a 10 hour (return) car trip last week, I knit the background to the Susan Rainey square using 4.5mm needles. It came out pretty close to a 12" square. I knit the 'sweater' yesterday. To finish it nicely, I did the increasing and decreasing one stitch in from the edge so I could use the mattress stitch to attach the sleeves. it came out quite nicely, if I do say so myself. I haven't attached the sweater to the square yet.

I started the Dana Hurt square last night. When I finish it, I'll be half done.

While on my trip, I bought the Interveave Knits "Harmony Guide: Cables and Arans" and will be designing a couple more squares incorporating some of those stitch patterns. I also want to design a square using the pattern from the Must Have Cardigan.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Latvian Moon Cross

Today I finished Dagmara Berztiss' 'Latvian Moon Cross'. It was really quite easy and really fun to knit. I probably should have used the recommended 4.5mm needles because using my 5mm needles, it's about an inch too tall and potentially too wide. I could also frog it and knit it again with the 5.0 needles and omit the moss stitch frame inside the garter stitch. We'll see when I assemble all the squares.

I learned how to round a curve. I am continuing to become more and more proficient doing cables without a cable needle.

I'm going on a car trip for a few days leaving on Wednesday. I think I'll do the Susan Rainey square (the one with the sweater) and do the stockinette background on the road.

Another one I plan to complete soon is Ann McCauley's 'Bobbledy Aran' Square.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Two More Finished

I finished the Carol Adams square last night.

I checked a book out of the library called "Beautiful Knitting Patterns" by Gisela Klopper and I'm going to use a couple of the stitch patterns and combinations for some squares of my own design. I finished the first one this afternoon which I am calling 'Hugs and Kisses'. It incorporates the 'Xs and Os' cable as well as the braided Celtic cable. It's just a little bit of love I'm knitting into the afghan.

I am entranced by cables so will be doing a couple of other squares with Aran or cable patterns from this book.

6 down 14 to go...

Thursday, June 12, 2008

3 More Squares

My next square was the Ginette Belanger square. I used 5mm needles.

I had previously knit a baby sweater using the trinity stitch (it was called bramble stitch in that pattern) and found it very tedious. It wasn't that bad on this square, possibly because the needles and yarn were so much bigger.

Then I knit the Julie H. Levy Square. It knit up very quickly. I'm very glad I learned Grumperina's technique for cabling without a cable needle. I used 5mm needles.

Yesterday I finished the Ann Strong square. I found the entwining of stocking stitch and moss stitch intriguing. I used 4.5mm needles.

I'm 20% done. Yay!

Now I'm working on the Carol Adams square using 5.0mm needles.

I have decided to knit all the squares and then decide to align them vertically according to width and add garter stitch to make them align horizontally. If there are still major sizing issues, I'll re-knit the offending squares to fit.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Cable Girl Clone

After attending Fiona Ellis' workshop on knitting cables at the end of April, I truly was inspired. So much so that almost everything I want to knit now is cables.

My most recent cable-y projects include:

The Must Have Cardigan from Patons 'Street Smart' booklet and the Putting Down Roots sweater (I'm doing it as a cardigan).

Naturally, when I found The Great American Aran Afghan, I had to do it - even though I'm Canadian. ;-)

Here's my first square designed by Barbara McIntire.

I tried several wool blends and have decided on Lion Brand Wool Ease. I like the look and feel of it and the fact that it's washable. It was also in my price range.

I don't know if I'll do all of the squares in the book. I plan to incorporate some of the cable designs from projects I've already completed. I've also ordered the Barbara Walker 'Learn-to-Knit Afghan' book and will include designs from it as well.

I'm teaching a class tomorrow night at Kniterary on doing cables without a cable needle. It should be fun.

New Member

This is the Barbara McIntire square-in-progress. It is such a fun knit. I plan to do all the easier squares, and then decide about the others. Actually my plan is to knit two of these afghans -- one for each daughter. I am using Lion Brand Wool-ease, and I really like it. And besides both daughters have small children and pets, and it has to be machine washable. I love knitting cables.


Thursday, May 29, 2008

And here are more squares

I couldn't add all the squares I had finished at once, apparently. So here are some more.


My first grouping of squares

I finally photographed my finished squares - there are about 9 of them so far. I'm using Cascade 220 in a sage green. Then I decided that I really liked some of the squares in the Great American Afghan book, so I am going to add some of them to the Aran Afghan. And I decided that I wanted to make a few of the American Squares that are multicolored, and add the natural Aran color to the afghan. Right now, I am in the midst of knitting the Ada Fenick square, and I am making the central tree natural color, while the rest of the square will be green. Besides the photographed squares, I have also finished the Nicky Epstein square in the American Afghan book, making 2 natural trees and one green tree. I'll photograph it once I have sewn the trees on (they are appliqued).
Here goes - let's see if I can figure out how to add the pics! I love knitting this afghan. It is so much fun to see the patterns emerge.


Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Traci bunkers

For the passed fews week I have been trying to get this going... However, I have been ripping out more than getting any knitting done on it...I am not going to give up..I am going rip one more time and hopefully I will get on track after that... The bobbles are fun to do... I really enjoy making those...Anyways I better get back to knitting so I can post a picture soon ...So ya all can see it!!!


Thank you for the invite! I am just waiting for the pattern so I can begin. I have held off making myself an afghan until I found the right pattern and this is it!!!

New to GAAA

Hi, fellow knitters! I am just starting the GAAA, and have part of the Susan Rainey square done. So far, so good. I have been knitting for over 40 years, but this presents challenges. I live in Wisconsin, and a friend in my knitting group is also working on it at the same time. It makes t so much fun. I am planning on doing 18 squares twice (I figure if I get through a square once, the second time might actually be FUN and easy?!) and two other squares once. Its great to have found a blog for this wonderful project.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Getting started

Stumbled across the GAAA book while on vacation last month. Couldn't wait to start on it! I'm a (self-taught, mainly cold-season!) knitter of about 15 years, but I've never used charts before and my most complicated projects to this point are socks with easy cable designs. Just started a little practice square (Belanger) last night to get my courage up before I invest in $100+ dollars in yarn. :-) I'm up for the challenge though--I hope! Any advice?

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Ginette Belanger square

I finished another one. Before you think I'm super-knitter for posting two squares so quickly, I have to say that this was a really easy square. My next one won't be so quick, I'm sure!

Monday, March 17, 2008


I finished my first square--the Julie H. Levy square. I decided to start with one that was labeled one of the easiest. It's not blocked yet, but here it is:

I've already started on my next square--the Ginette Belanger square. I'm working them all in Lion Brand Yarn Wool Ease Fisherman.

Friday, February 29, 2008

Ravelry Group

I thought I had already posted this but it looks like my memory isn't as good as it used to be!

There's an active Ravelry group set up just for the GAAA project and I'd like to extend an invitation to everyone to join. It's so nice to see what yarn people are using and all of those completed afghans. Here's the link to the group: Great American Aran Afghan Along

For those of you unfamiliar with Ravelry put your name on the waiting list now. It seems like the wait is around a week but it may be shorter now. While you're waiting you can read up on all of the cool stuff this site has to offer. It's completely free and so useful!

I think it's great to have many different venues for sharing this afghan with other people!

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Hello, everyone

I just joined the blog. My name is Jennifer, and I live in Central Florida. I haven't started the afghan yet--I plan to do that this coming Monday at my regular knitting group. I got the book in the mail last week, and I've picked out my yarn (I've decided to use Lion Brand Wood-Ease in Fisherman). I just need to decide which square I'm going to start with first--what a tough choice!! I'll keep you updated on how it's going...


It's so nice to have new people actively working on the afghan! You all inspired me to really get working on it and finish this year. I've had all the yarn for several years now. I'm hoping to finish up on the Belanger square sometime this week. Here's my progress as of yesterday:

I got excited because I thought I was going to finish last night. Then I took another look at the instructions and it's 3 repeats of the cable pattern and not 2. Good thing I was paying attention other wise that one would have been a nightmare to block later!

BTW - I'm using Plymouth Encore in the Aran colorway

Monday, February 04, 2008

Dear Cathy,
My name is Barbara and there's a small group of us in Toms River, NJ, who are making this afghan together. We meet 2x/month, work on our blocks, try to work out problems a member is having, choose the next block, etc. We've found that enlarging the graft helps a LOT as does assigning different colors to the graft, key and explanation of each of the different stitches. While it may seem elementary to use colors, it does make things easier to follow for us.

Your Twisted Knitster,
Barbara at the Jersey Shore :)

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

New to GAAAAaaa

Hi! My name is Cathy. I'm new to this blog (and blogging), new to GAAAAaaaa (did I get that right?), and new to knitting all things Aran. I'm so excited to join this group of knitters as I have always had this lingering interest in the challenge of Aran knitting and can just picture a beautiful afghan in my home, then perhaps in my daughter's (if I ever finish the first one)! Listen to that -- talk about being excited to knit an Aran afghan; I'm already planning my second one! So does anyone have any words from experience to share about getting started with this project? I have ordered the "GAAA" book and will get started as soon as I receive it and have purchased my yarn. Can I search this blog for types of yarn used or can anyone share with me your favorite type of yarn and amount needed for an afghan? I don't know how blogs work, so I'll leave my email address in case that is the way for someone to respond -- help in this regard would be appreciated as well -- Thanks for your patience and help with this new blogger and GAAA knitter! BTW, for all you Ravelers, I can be found there as cajanoon as well.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

excited about this project!

Hi, all. I'm just starting this afghan...already, I can't wait to give it to my daughter for Christmas! I finished a couple squares, and am kind of stuck on the Dagmara Berztiss square right now. But it's a challenge, and I'm going to get through it! I'm glad to have found others working this same project!

Monday, January 07, 2008

Happy New Year!

I know it's a little late but I wanted to wish everyone a Happy New Year while it's still January!

One of my resolutions is to finish my GAAA by December 31st. I've got 3 squares done so far and many other projects on my list but I think I might be able to do it. I already have the yarn so that's a step in the right direction!

Anyone else trying to do the same?