Thursday, July 30, 2009

In the (knitting) groove

I've been a bit a busy knitter this week. I've managed to whip up a hat and a scarf in my free time. And I've started on a pair of socks. Yes, those socks. The ones for my mom that keep frustrating me every time I pick up the needles. No pictures of that yet, but I'm only 1/4 inch into the ribbing on the first sock. But something feels different this time. Maybe this pattern really is meant to be.

The hat is for an intern at work. She's dating the brother of one of my bestest friends and she's become a friend of mine over the last couple of months. So as a "Here, I think you're cool so I'm knitting you a present" present, I made a hat. I used the Baroness pattern from Ravelry. Its a free pattern (and you know I'm a fan of those!) and its really easy. I probably only have a bout 4 or 5 hours in it. And that's while watching TV. CSI, to be exact, and I get a little distracted by Grissom. So it might have taken me a little longer than normal.

Anywho.... here it is...



As for the scarf, I took a photo, but haven't had a chance to upload it. 'Tis a simple seed stitch scarf. But I used Misti Alpaca in the most gorgeous shade of red. I made it for my Aunt Sarah. She's the last of the "I'm a knitter now so I have to knit everyone I know a scarf" people. I finally have that out of my system. And it only took 2 years.

Friday, July 24, 2009

I have pictures!

(Disclaimer: Pictures were made on a cell phone. Sorry for the quality of some prints.)

First off is the Oblique:

The bath mat: (Olivia was eating her lunch and refused to move. So she gets her picture published as well.)

And the scarf:

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Must. Post. More. Often...

So what's the point of a knitting blog, if you never post a thing? I swear I've been working on projects, even have a couple to show off. But I can't seem to get around to taking and posting photos. So I'll just give you, dear reader, a quick glimpse at what's on the needles.

Oblique -- A beautiful Veronik Avery sweater pattern. Available free on Knitty. I used Malabrigo worsted in Sealing Wax. I love, love, love this sweater and have to keep and eye on it around my friend Erin. She seems to like it a lot. And it fits her very well. Hopefully it won't wander off with her.

Muriwai Bath Mat -- From Knit 2 Together by Mel Clark and Tracey Ullman. A great little cotton bathmat. Needs to be blocked, my edges aren't straight. I used Pisgah Peaches and Cream in white so I can bleach it along with my towels and shower curtain. The kitty seems to like it. She naps in the bathroom floor now.

Easy Flame Lace Scarf -- A free pattern from Knit and Tonic. Love that Wendy Bernard. She does gorgeous stuff. The pattern calls for and I am used Malabrigo laceweight. This stuff is heavenly. I think I've blogged about this project before, but I've picked it up again and have added a few inches to it.

Blanket squares -- No fancy pattern here. Just garter stitch squares for a swap in my Ravelry group, the awesome and amazing Knit Knack. I love those ladies. One of these days, I'll finished those damn squares.

Socks -- I haven't settled on a pattern here. My mom picked out the yarn and it is absolutely lovely, but I can't seem to settled on the right pattern for it. I would love to find something beautiful to make with this yarn in time for her birthday in October. Its Rio de la Plata sock multisolid, if anyone out there happens to have a suggestion.

On a quick non-knitting note, I'm currently reading "The Monster of Florence" by Douglas Preston and Mario Spezi. Its fascinating. You should check it out.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Stick a fork in me, 'cause I am done!

I finally finished my green Bacchus socks last night. And I'm wearing them today. I don't care that its 100 degrees outside and they're wool. They're awesome! Here are a couple of photos.... (they were taken with my cell phone, so I apologize for the quality)...

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

My triumphant return....

Because I just don't have ENOUGH projects going on at one time, I decided to cast on for another do a KAL with my roommate. It really didn't take any time to figure out what we wanted to do. It had to be something small, that we could both make pretty quickly. And the size had to be the same because she's a wee thing and I'm, well, not. Since we live in Alabama and knitted hats are just not going to come out of the closet for another 6 months (it really won't be cold enough until sometime in December), we settled on socks.

I wanted the project to be something special. If I'm going to put all this time into something I'm just going to wear on my feet, I wanted it to be something I'm going to enjoy. Apparently we had both been coveting the Bacchus pattern in the Fall 2008 Interweave. And I just happened to have the perfect Shibui sock in Wasabi. With the vines and bobbles in the pattern I figured the color would work wonderfully. And I wasn't disappointed.

I'm moving along a little slower than my roomie, but I've been busy updating my new iPod (Sad story... my old one disappeared in the Wal-Mart parking lot. I was lost without it.) and house-sitting for my mom while she's at the beach. I have turned the heel and am working on the first set of bobbles past that. I elected to leave off the bobbles on the foot simply because I didn't want them to interfere with whatever shoes I might decide to wear. I think it lookes great without them.

The pattern has been really easy so far and I'm taking the opportunity to try cabling without a needle. It really isn't difficult. But I wouldn't recommend it with a yarn that doesn't stick to itself rather well. That's what keeps the stitches from dropping. The heel was a little tricky and I made sure to pull my first on each row stitch tight as I went back and forth turning the heel. This helped prevent any loese areas. If you wind up with loose areas, you can use some leftover yarn to whipstitch that shut, no problem.

I'm hoping to head home from work a little early tonight and get a little more work done on this sock. But before I go, let me leave you with a little WIP photo....

Long time, no blog....

I am returning to the world of blogging. Soon. I have a few projects to talk about. And I'm going to be making some changes around here. Stay tuned for updates!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Its in the bag, baby

I decided I wanted to make a bag for a good friend of mine. She's very selfless and is a real sweetheart and deserves a little treat. This was made using the Funky Purse by Suss Cousins. The pattern is available in Hollywood Knits. Its a great book, full of all kinds of patterns.

The bag itself was easy. Took a couple hours maybe. I had my mom line it this past weekend. I sewed the handles to it this afternoon. I used a lovely blue-green color of Patons Classic Wool Merino. I've only seen this color once. I wish I'd bought more of it when I had the chance. It was really soft and I think it is a great color.

There's really nothing to discuss about this one. Its a pretty straight-forward project. Easily a weekend knit. And inexpensive enough. I used embroidery hoops for the handles, so they're a little flexible, but still have plenty of support so the bag can hold its shape.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Happy Belated Birthday, Mama...

I finished knitting this in June. Just blocked it this past weekend. My mom's birthday was in October. Yeah, I'm a slacker.

On the upside, though, she absolutely loved the blanket. I used Knit Picks Wool of the Andes. Not the softest yarn in the world, but its light as a feather and warm, according to my mom. She's already snuggled under the blanket a few times now. I think I used a size 8 needle. You can find the directions and links to charts and such over at Brooklyn Tweed.

Jared's blanket is great. But I decided to make mine a little larger. I only made it through one more pattern repeat than he did. The rounds got too long. And I really didn't want to make a blanket big enough to put on the bed.

I did modify the bind off a little. I didn't do all the fancy loops, just kinda made it up on the spot. The pattern looks great either way. I've heard though, that the fancy bind off take a lot of yarn. So if you want to do that, just make sure you have enough yarn.

There are a couple of KAL groups out there that have done this blanket. I know one is on Yahoo. They're a great source of information if you have any questions. And I'd be happy to answer any you have as well, should you decide to take on this project. And you should do it. It looks much more intimidating than it actually is.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Lady in Red

I should be knitting blanket squares for the Knit Knack exchange. But I can't. I have a sweater's worth of the most awesome red Malabrigo just sitting in my stash, begging to be knit up into something fabulous. So I gave in. I admit, I'm weak in the face of such beautiful yarn. I cast on a new project, Oblique by Veronik Avery.

I've had this queued on Ravelry for quite some time, just waiting for the perfect yarn. And I think I've found it. My last experience with Malabrigo didn't turn out so well. My sweater turned out much larger than I thought it would. I'm not sure if it was the yarn or the pattern, but it grew significantly when I blocked it. (I really hope it was the pattern. I would really hate to end my love affair with Malabrigo. I just don't think my heart could take it.) This time, I did a gauge swatch and I'm going down a size than what I would normally wear. I'm hoping that when I block it, and the sweater grows, that it will turn out the right size.

I'm almost done with the left front piece. Considering I only cast on 2 days ago, I'm moving right along. The pattern is a little more difficult to follow than any I've done before. That's because the neck and waist shaping are done at the same time, but after a couple of "Oh no! I messed something up and now my stitch count is off!" moments, I'm on track. Turns out, I had the right number of stitches all along. I only did 15 stitches in the moss stitch section instead of 19. That's why the right-leaning lace had one more repeat than I was supposed to. Thankfully it all works out. I made some notes on the pattern so that I can repeat my "mistake" on the other front piece and possibly the back piece.

I don't have a picture of the actual WIP at the moment, but I'll try to swing back by later tonight and post one. In the meantime, here's a picture of the yarn I'm using. Red doesn't photograph well, so keep in mind that this yarn isn't quite as orange as it looks.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year

So, here it is the first day of the new year and I must admit that I'm looking forward to the next 364 days ahead of me. I've decided this is my year. For what, I don't know, but it will be. I have a good feeling about it.

Some quick, non-knitting news. I've been called for jury duty next week. Not really looking forward to that because I have to be at the courthouse at 8:30 a.m. My brother is leaving that morning to go back to Honduras and I won't be able to go to the airport to see him off. Also, I'm not looking forward to getting up quite that early. My brain doesn't function until noon. But, I have decided that the bright side to this is plenty of knitting time. Especially if they don't get rid of me right away. I just hope they allow me to bring my needles into the courtroom.

Now, to the good stuff. I've been pondering what to do with a beautiful skein of yellow Malabrigo laceweight yarn that my bestest buddy brought back to me from Key West. I've started work on the Easy Flame Lace Scarf from Knit and Tonic. I love her site. She always has such beautiful patterns and they're really easy to follow. Here's what I have so far...

This was taken a few days ago and I've progressed pretty quickly. The pattern is easy to remember, so I don't have to carry the paper around with me.

I am going to put aside the scarf until I finish the blanket squares I've been putting off. I'd post pictures of those, but they're just plain garter stitch 10"-by-10" squares. I will post pictures of my finished blanket once I get the squares from everyone else.

Alrighty then ... with that out of the way let me get to the point here. It is after a new year and with new years come new resolutions. This year, I intend to keep them. But I am being realistc here. No outlandish resolutions for me. I never stick to those anyways.

1) Use more stash yarn before buying new yarn. The only exception to this will be special occasions like a massive sale or when I go to Stitches in April.
2) Get back to church. I haven't been in a long time and I really miss going. Even if I find a different church, I need to start going again.
3) Make a list of "Must Read Before I Die" books and actually read something off that list.
4) Keep my house cleaner so I can invite people over at the drop of a hat and not be worried about the state of my living room and kitchen.

I was going to do more, but I decided to stop here. I figured that's good enough. Right? What are your big resolutions this year?