Thursday, January 31, 2008

Harlot may be on to something...

Hey Robin!
As this might be my last post for a week (depending upon my willingness to plunk down in front of the laptop while I am at Disneyworld... what are the chances?) I decided to cram as much stuff in this post as I can.

Got another FO!
Allie's "Strawberry bag" based on Daisy from Debbie Bliss Junior Knits. With changes of course. I can't say i like her idea of a good time... too much sewing man! I changed the purse part to be knit in the round and decided not to change the kneedle size when knitting the stockinette lining. I reduced a couple of times to make sure there was no puckering inside the bag. Although the green inside DOES look a bit like a sour apple candy :) Feast your eyes:

I haven't sewn the little flowers on yet, i want to wash the bag first. I hope that's not a stupid idea. The bag is Lily cotton in strawberry and hot green? (hot lime? i cant be bothered to get up and go look at the ball band sorry) and the flowers are from the Elsbeth Lavold Hempathy (rose) which i used to make Karin's Adornment. It worked nicely for these little things! I can now understand why the Harlot was so obsessed with the leaves! The flowers were right addictive and it was all i could do not to make 3 more for the other side (I really must move on to something else... really). I'll use a little of the green to sew them on with a French Knot like DB suggested.

OK and since i will be gone so long I have some promised yarn pr0n. Here goes:
Wendee of Hazel Knits fame managed to sequester one last hank of the Greenlake for me. Woohoo! Thanks Wendee!! Ain't it wonderful to see? I must have the perfect pattern for it. maybe I will use this for Vinnland... hmmm... tough one.

Then there's this for this:

I don't think I have to tell you how difficult it is not to take this with me on the trip. But it's going to be bloody-hot (in the 80's and i am currently acclimated to the 30's) so i am going to play smart and take a sock. Or maybe a hat..

Finally, today i got my Uraguayan wool (no it isn't MmmmmMalabrigo, but it's close) purchased on eBay from the manufacturer I think, for excellent price. Though it took way-long to arrive, it is quite nice! The aqua will probably become Loafers for my Aunt (who i will get to see this week but who probably won't get her loafers while i am there... i'm just not THAT fast!). And the green yellow... i have no idea why i bought that. I thought there was some pink in there. That's what I remember, anyway I think it might become a koolhaas or a Pithy Hat. What do you think?

I think i just want to roll around in it for a while...

I hope that is suitable to hold you until next week! :D

No really. Do over.

Hey Kate!

I'm working on about 2 and a half hours' sleep right now, FYI. And yes, I had to start the sweater over again last night. I discovered that it was twisted which, as you know, is a fatal flaw in a circular garment.

When I pulled it off the kneedles, I discovered that it was also too big. It seems that while my gauge was just fine this time, my measuring of the spousal unit's favorite sweater was not so fine. I was off by 4 inches somehow. How hard is it to use a tape measure anyway?

So now I've begun again and I've cast on 150 stitches on size 10 kneedles. Hopefully, this one will stick.

Emme seems to have the TV knitting pose down just right.



Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Do over!

Hey Kate!

So anyway, last night I started worrying about how big my stitches were coming out on the EZified Skully. I consulted with the recipient and we agreed that I should go down to 10 1/2 kneedles instead of the 11s I was using.

Now, as you know, the whole point of a swatch is to see what your gauge is with particular kneedles, yarn and your own style of knitting. I had decided to read the gauge of my initial Skully attempt. You know, the one that I knitted straight instead of circular, knitted on Boye kneedles instead of the Harmony, and knitted using English instead of Continental. Yes, I'm brilliant. So, when I pulled the EZ Skully off the kneedles, I discovered that my gauge was just a wee bit off, unless I was knitting for a horse.

So, I swatched a little tube on the 10.5 kneedles and discovered that my gauge was 3 stitches per inch. (I had calculated the previous gauge at 3.5 stitches per inch. Obviously, it was more like 2 stitches per inch.) This is still a little big, but the Spousal Unit isn't really looking for a tight fabric, so I'm going with it for now. Once I get a few rows past the border, if I still feel it's too loose, I'll begin again with size 10s.

I started again by casting on 150 stitches and am halfway through the garter stitch border.

Knitting without tears of laughter seems to be a difficult task for me.



Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Widdle Footwets!

Hey Robin!
OMG i had no idea when i started just how cute these things would be. I gotta say: first baby socks and it may be addicting. I might follow-up every pair of adult socks with a pair of plan ol' baby socks. I will then have a stash of baby socks for everyone we know who has a baby. Like Mason-Dixon Kay, i may shed baby socks as I walk down the street.

Did you have any idea that a 10 sided die was the almost the same size as a newborn baby leg?? And no comments about the fact that I have percentile dice on my desk thank you.

They are so simple to do, and these were my first short-row heel! I didn't like them at first. You know that. But having to do two on each sock i started to get the hang of it. Now I know why knitters are always asking how to close up the holes in their heels. I never had holes when I did the heel-flaps! I just didn't get it! Now I get it... and now I have to go find those helpful tips on exactly how to do that. How DO you close up a gap created by a k3tog?? The word wants to know!

The pattern i used for these plain stockinette ones is called Hunca Munca. Free pattern, with three variations that are really great (I'm going to do the little cabled one with some plainer yarn that i have laying about). Mostly-easy to understand, though I really think there might be a better way to write the short row heel instructions... but she did better than I would have! I mean no criticisms! Anyway, soon i will cast on the second pair since these are for new twin boys!

Don't you just wanna choke they are so cute?

Cuteness aside, I have a new obsession. I am going to need socks to knit on my vacation (Disneyworld! w00t!) and i decided on these in my Lorna's Laces Douglas Fir color way. This is the shepherd sock yarn she makes and o. my. gawd. Um... yeah nice yarn there. Trouble is I am knitting them on my rosewood sock kneedles from latern moon. I heart rosewood. The mere act of swatching is making me all aquiver. The greeny-blue and the rosewood together, these two were a match made in heaven. I only hope the gauge comes out right because I had my heart set on this pattern... i mean, she uses a reference to the Green Man! How could i not make these??!! It's like FATE!

Yarn Fate!


Skully Talk

Hey Kate!

So I've been working on the Skully for some time now. That is the Ravelry link to the skull-sleeved sweater from Stitch 'n Bitch. It's for the Spousal Unit and I had originally planned to get it done for Christmas, but as you can see I failed. You see, I hate sewing and I'm not too fond of doing stockinette straight, either. So I've decided that even though I've knit a quite a bit on the front (see below), I'm going to EZ it.

So instead of knitting a bunch of pieces and sewing them together (ew), I've cast on an EZ seamless sweater. I will still use the Skully sleeves (though in the round), but I will be making an EZ raglan sweater otherwise. I'm using Cadena (my yarn of choice, lately) in Coal and Natural. Of course, I'm using size 11 of my new Harmony kneedles which I love far more than what is healthy. I've cast on 161 stitches, which should make quite a large sweater -- I'm hoping.

I'm not following EZ's complete directions, however, (which, in fact, is following her directions since she says to change pattern directions) because I knit in the garter stitch border rather than going back and adding it later. Not only will that mean less finishing later, but it also means that the sweater won't curl up on me during the long stockinette stretches.

It makes great knitting for watching TV on the couch while whimpering about how I'm still sick. The Spousal Unit also makes sure to remind me to knit if I let my hands fall during interesting parts.

I'll keep you up to date on my progress.



Monday, January 28, 2008

The prodigal project

Hey Kate!

I finally dug out the Lacy Top and unsewed the backward panel. After re-sewing it and all the other little pieces, it was a lot of fun crocheting the border. The yarn was Knitpicks Shine Worsted, which is very yummy though it does split very easily. And I used an I crochet hook, not that it matters very much. Crocheting is just so much less kneedle dependent than Knitting. I use a cheap metal hook and love it, but I am such a kneedle snob.

From now on, before I fall in love with a pattern, I must look at how it's made. This one had too much sewing and it requires a snap (which I don't have) to make up for poor design. In crocheted goodies, this is what I like to stitch, not things like this lacy top.

Regardless, it is adorable. It's big on Emme, but that was as intended.



Sunday, January 27, 2008

My pet washcloth

Hey Kate,

Still ill. But happily TCM plays lotsa good movies uncut and without ads. Great for comfort knitting.

Technical details: The yarn is Blue Sky Organic Cotton and the kneedles I used are the Harmony options, size 7 in the 24" size. When the circle got too small, I just switched to Magic Loop knitting instead of switching to DPNs. So convenient. So easy.

But now that I've finished my washcloth, I don't want to use it. I just put it on my chest and pet it while I sit at my computer or watch more movies. Is that weird? Maybe I shouldn't have posted about this. I'll probably regret this when I'm more lucid.



Thursday, January 24, 2008

Comfort knitting

Hey Kate,

I'm still under the weather so I'm comfort knitting. Making soft cotton petals is very therapeutic. And then there are always Dragonscale mitts when I'm feeling ambitious. Dragons are cool. (By the way, I'm linking to Ravelry from now on. Anyone who is interested in the patterns should join up anyway.)

When I got the camera out to take this picture, Emme followed me around shouting, "Cheese!" The things you learn on Sesame Street...

That's all I got.



Wednesday, January 23, 2008


Hey Robin,

DONE! You gotta make one of these for Emme!!

Pattern: Skirtsicle
Yarn: Lily cotton, Strawberry colorway
Size: 4

Me: SQEEE! I can't wait to see it on her!

I got my Rogue Hoodie yarn (Knit Picks Swish Superwash in Lemongrass... woo!) and i'm trying to tidy up the Kid Kaper so that I may unveil it at last... however it is eluding my attempts at reaching completion. Booo!! Wish me luck.

Later :)

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Knitting, knitting, everywhere!

Hey Kate!

I've been sick, as you know, so I haven't done much of anything except playing ToonTown. Since I last posted, I did receive some delicious yarn, however.

Malabrigo, Blue Sky Organic Cotton and Blue Sky Alpaca Sport. Soooo luscious. I got them from Jimmy Beans, the store that you recommended. Here is a link to their newsletter, so you can drool with me.

Speaking of yarn and ToonTown, I had to do a quest at the Sweater Lodge in The Brrrgh. First I had to go defeat Cogs until they dropped some yarn. Then the yarn wasn't the right color, so I had to go do some busy work, while Johnny Cashmere dyed the yarn. Then I had to go fishing for his lost kneedles. (I can see why knitting might be a fun thing to do while fishing.) Then Mr. Cashmere gave me some more busy work to do while he knitted up the quest item. I'm guessing one of the developers is a knitter or is married/related to one.

Emme is destroying the place, so I gotta go. Future blackmail pic to follow. She is so going to appreciate the smooshed banana in the hair picture when she's 14, don't you think?



Friday, January 18, 2008


Hey Robin!
I have a couple of FO's to report! Yay!

Here are the finished mittens. Yay! I can tell you, these are SO warm and toasty and the fact that they don't clamp-down around my wrist isn't nearly as much of a problem (yet) as I thought it might be. I don't think i'll be doing many snowball fights with them, but for tooting-around-town they are just what the Mommy ordered! I had no idea the thumbs would be so well camoflaged in that picture. There are thumbs! I promise!
Also I reversed the colors in mitten #2... just 'cause. If I were really smart (and had the energy) I probably would have reversed the pattern too so they would look better side-by side. Ah well, live and learn! I'm calling these mittens:

Sunshine and Blue Skies:
Yarn: Malabrigo worsted in pollen and bijou blue.
Pattern: Generic norwegian mitten graph and celtic spiral pattern from Celtic Charted Designs (pattern 225), Dover books

Next up in the FO gallery:
A friend/co-worker of Hub just recently had a wee bairn. They are nerds like us, so when i saw this pattern for a Baby Yoda Sweater... I had to make it. I mean it's really not much for a yoda-lookalike but it IS a little reminiscent of the smock type things the jedi wear... if you squint a bit ;)

I'm truly sorry the pictures suck so bad....

Anyway, the designer made it with MissionFalls 1824 cotton with this reasoning: "Young Jedis prefer natural fibers, you know. Acrylic interferes with The Force". I love it. Well all i had to-hand was some sugar n cream and so i made-do. It's the "ecru" color... yes the sleeves are a different dye-lot. Don't tell! I made a couple small changes to the pattern: knit it in the round, kitchenered the shoulders, picked up stitches around the arm-hole and knitted down rather than up (can anyone tell i hate seaming?) and made crochet-chains for the ties instead of i-cord only because I think they are easier to tie... i could be wrong. If the Mommy tells me that the crochet cords aren't strong enough I will made the appropriate changes :) It's an adorable little sweater! I'm so glad I found it on Ravelry!

The hat is "Simple hat" which I also found on Ravelry. In retrospect I probably should not have made it from cotton... it won't be fitting the young gentleman's head for long. But it fashionably matches the sweater.... perhaps I will follow up with a wool hat later on. ;)

Next up on the agenda: More Kid Kaper (a bit of a slog, sorry it's taking so long) and Skirtsicle! Wheeeee!


Saturday, January 5, 2008

Half warm!

Hey Robin,
Not much to say, just wanted to show-off my VERY FIRST COLORWORK! W00t!
I think I will reverse the colors in the other mitten, just for grins...

pattern-graph: from Celtic charted Designs by Co Spinhoven
yarn: Malabrigo worsted in "that" blue and "that" yellow (still looking for the cards with the color names on them)


Friday, January 4, 2008

Inspired by Anne... and Kay... and Ann

Hey Robin!
How far behind i have been in my blog READING (we won't even discuss the blog WRITINg-behindedness) I have discovered that at the same time that I was pestering one of my Maternal Uncles about my Great Grandmother's recipe books (he now lives in the house that her husband built for her), Mason Dixon was thinking about a contest for recipe boxes! How great! However my Granny's recipes weren't in a box... they were crammed into books like Anne's family-recipes! Her pics of the family-treasure inspired me to share my recently arrived bounty from Louisiana!

So I can't enter the MasonDixon contest, because these just aren't purdy-enough.... but I can "play" too can't I? :) Here we go:

OK on the left is the collection of recipes, some handwritten/typed, most are clipped from various magazines (see pic on right). No, those aren't your eyes playing tricks, there is no longer a cover on that monster. I swear, the greatest part of all this are all the fabulous advertisements from the 50's! It's a treasure trove!

OK next up the Big-Momma prize, this is the one I was asking for:

This ladies (and gents?) is a WW2 era Better Homes and Gardens cookbook. The most recent copyright date on there is 1943. And here's the bit that always fascinated me growing up:

That right there is an insert on how to cook better wartime meals. History folks... in a cookbook.


I love BH&G... how many cookbooks do YOU have that tell you how to get spots out of your laundry??

There, I hope you enjoy these pictures as much as I am enjoying these treasures!

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Presenting: The Apprentice Beanie

Hey Kate!

I'm done! It looks better in person than it does in the pics. I'm much happier with the results than I thought I would be. Though it is technically reversible, the blue side looks much better than the white/natural side -- mostly due to some mistakes I made.

The design needs some work because as it stands, there is one faulty star due to the design. The rest of the problems are all knitter error. Well, that and the fact that stars don't come out all that great knitted.

The hat took most of one hank each of the Cadena in Tide and Natural. I used 16" size 10 bamboo circular kneedles until the end when I used size 10.5 DPNs. I will write up the pattern soonly, but I have to catch up to my other writing first.

It is meant to be worn as a beanie, but also can be worn as an actual apprentice hat if the mood should strike you thusly.