Wednesday, August 23, 2006

what i did on my summer vacation, part 2.2

After posting the picture of the lace cuff I made, I thought I should make one for my friend Robin. So, last night:

I gave it to her tonight and she loved it! I love giving knits to people who really appreciate them!

Monday and Tuesday, I worked on another Fair Isle project. This, if it turns out, will be a birthday present for my friend Julie. I'm just kind of winging it and hoping it turns out. I have a chart that I'm working from, but I will be adapting it as I go.

This morning, I finally did what I had wanted to do on my vacation: Yarn Store Lurking

(I didn't get to a couple that I really wanted to visit, but there's still time I suppose)

At Beehive Yarn, I decided to splurge on some handpainted sock yarn for myself:

Claudia Hand Painted Fingering weight in the Walk in the Woods colorway.

At Gina Brown's I got

Lana Grossa Meilenweit Colortweed sock yarn
(seeing a pattern yet?)


Regia Bamboo Color. Yes, BAMBOO!!! Sock yarn!! 45% bamboo, 40% wool, 15% polyamide. It feels cool to the touch and is extremely soft and feels so nice to knit with. I'm hoping that the socks I make with this will be for my mom. She is very sensitive to wool and doesn't like blends, but she may be okay with these (if not: Socks for Lori!)

So, the observant among you will notice that I cast on for the first sock in the Bamboo. That picture was taken about 20 minutes after I got home. I will use these as my "take along" project, to knit on while waiting for whatever, or while stuck standing still in traffic, or... whatever.

Now, you would think that there would be no way I would cast on for two separate sock projects within an hour of coming home from the yarn store, right?

Well, if you think that my friend, you would be wrong:

I'm using Steph's Orchid Sock pattern. This is a couple of hours of knitting time, but I did cast on about 20 minutes after I cast on the Bamboo...

Tomorrow and Friday I will be visiting my brother, his wife and the twins! I can't wait to see them.

I'll post another installment of what I did on my summer vacation when I'm back.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

what i did on my summer vacation, part 2.1

Yesterday (the first day of my second part of my summer vacation)(whew) was 30C/86F. So, what did I do on the first day of my (second) summer vacation?

What anyone would do... I knit a fair isle toque in 100% wool! Of course!

Pattern: My own, adapted from a chart for fair isle mittens I found in my big pile o'patterns.
Yarn: Some odd balls of beautiful colored wool that I got from the Yarn Lady and some of the Custom Woolen Mills Mule Spinner 2 ply leftover from my Cable Front Cardigan.
I had been trying to think of something to do with the yarn from the Yarn Lady and woke up yesterday morning with this in my head. So, I decided that a hot day in August was the perfect day to make a toque...

My favorite part?

The top! I love this bit! I think I'll make more of these. It's a little long, but I think I can adapt it. I think (hope) there's enough left over to make mittens to match. This may or may not be a gift. We'll see.

More on my summer vacation as summer vacation progresses...

what i did on my summer vacation, part 1

I split up my 2 weeks of summer vacation this year. In July, I went to spend a week with my mom. There was lots of swimming with my nephew and niece. Lots of time with my mom. And, knitting (gasp):

I already showed you the blue sweater, which I worked on while I was there. Now, for the other projects (a month late, but whatever...):

Pattern: Knitty's Perdita
Yarn: DMC Coton Perle 318 Light Steel Gray
I made the smallest size (due to my freakishly thin wrists. My 5 year old nephew has thicker wrists than I do) and used about 1/2 of the skein. I used seed beads from my bead box. It took me about 4 hours altogether to do and I quite like the way this turned out. I think I'll make more to give as gifts.

Pattern: Berocco's Brea Bag
Yarn: some recycled linen/cotton blend doubled.
This picture was taken a month ago. I would love to show you a finished project, but... um... well... The gusset piece is done. I just need to get off my butt and finish it. And cut out and sew lining. And find a handle. And a button.

Yeah. Maybe I should finish it on my second week of vacation. Which is taking place... Now!

Part 2 of "what i did on my summer vacation" will be posted shortly.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

I'm still here...

Sorry I haven't posted in a while! Thanks for all the nice comments on the Blue Sweater. I keep meaning to write up the modifications I made to the original pattern. I'll do it (eventually).

I have other projects to show you but I'm too lazy to do the pictures today... Sunday... ahh...

In the meantime a couple of quick projects to show you:
My twin nephews turn 1 on the 28th. Little boys need dinosaurs:

Pattern: Dinosaurs by Jennifer Thurston at Xtreme-Knitting (free PDF available at the link)
Yarn: Random worsted weight acrylic odd balls from massive random acrylic stash.


Everyone seems to be having babies! My sister-in-law is due in February, and my sister is expecting and due in November! Also, my good friend from when I worked in Germany, Heidi (who sometimes reads this, so, Heidi if you're reading this, SKIP THIS PART!!!)(Well, unless you already got the package...) just had a little boy! Good news for knitters!

Pattern: Knitty's Trellis
Yarn: TLC Essentials in Country Blue. I decided to go with acrylic so that it can be washed without concern for shrinkage. I've never had a baby, but I can't see a new mom wanting to have to worry about laying a baby sweater out to dry!

I'll post a few other things this week. I need to get back to posting more frequently!

Saturday, August 05, 2006

If Sisyphus had been a knitter...

...I believe he probably would have reknit the bottom band of his sweater almost as many times as I did. That is to say: I re-knit and/or bound off the bottom of this sweater no less that 4 times:
(I'm not telling you about the re-knitting of the sleeves (2x) due to similar issues)
1. Original finish: 4 inches of a lace rib. Didn't like the bind off (too tight)
2. Tink back and re-bind off.
3. Try on sweater and realize that a) I should have increased the number of stitches in the body and b) the resulting "narrow fit" caused my extremely long sweater to become extremely short. Insert lifeline and frog. Re-knit, trying to eke out enough inches to make it a bit longer (I thought I didn't have any more of the yarn). Block the crap out of it trying for more width and more length.
4. Realize that somehow the lace rib ROLLS UP. (dude. Lace Rib is not supposed to roll up) Also, realize that, while blocking helped with the "narrow fit", the shirt really really needs more length. Suddenly remember that you actually do have more of the yarn, since you ended up buying more when you had planned to make the cable vest. Frog again. Re-knit using a combination of stocking stitch and seed stitch to go with the seed stitch border of the neck and because of the rolling of the &$%*#^@ lace rib. Decide that you will be happy with it no matter what because you want this shirt dammit and enough already. Try on. Breathe easy.


Pattern/Modifications: Body shaping and top-down construction based on Knitty/Stephanie Japel's Mesilla. I adapted the cast on and neckline to start higher on the neck and to be more of a U-like v-neck. (does that make sense?)

Yarn: Butterfly Super 10
Verdict: I love it. I knew that the neck had worked out exactly how I wanted, which is why I kept going with trying to get the bottom to work. I love the color and I think I can live with the fit (it's a little close fitting, but it will ease up with wear).

I'll write a bit tomorrow about my vacation (I've been back for almost a week already!) and other projects knit on vacation and what I'm working on next. (Actually, I need to decide what I'm working on next)