29 September 2008

Snow White Cable Hat

I knit this hat while watching the Democratic National Convention. I've had this Lopi in the stash for a couple of years, I think, and have been meaning to make a pretty cable-rib hat with it for a while.

It's a basic 56-stitch hat with a 2x2 rib. Size 9 (US) needles. I should have started with 60 stitches rather than 56: it's just the tiniest bit too small, but it's not unwearable. I added stitch markers to divide the hat into thirds, and then cabled semi-randomly when I felt like it. The cables look a little too sparse, and this was another reason I should have done 60 stitches -- then I could have divided into fourths rather than thirds and made the cabling a little more evenly-spaced and symmetrical.

Anyway, it's a hat. I'm pretty happy with it. I have a second skein of this same white Lopi, so I may make another one if I ever feel the motivation. If I do, then this prototype may get frogged and turned into mittens of some kind. Maybe. Meh.

24 September 2008

Red Teddy Bear

Sister's Baby is due in about five weeks. That seems really soon to me, but the summer flew by very quickly this year.

I was not terribly successful in my quest to make a ton of baby stuff for her, particularly since I (a) was not purchasing any yarn, and (b) did not have much superwash in the stash. I did pick up some gorgeous Colinette Cadenza at the Kaleidoscope Anniversary Sale in June, and it took me a while to figure out what to do with it. The yarn is "Easy Care" which is sort of like being Superwash, but only sort of. Theoretically you can wash this stuff in a machine, but only in cold water on gentle cycle with special wool-friendly laundry powder -- and if you can't do all of that then please handwash. So, how that is different from normal wool I'm not sure.

But I finally found the answer to my "what the heck do I do with this yarn?" dilemma: teddy bear (Ravelry link). While a teddy bear will need occasional washing if, say, Baby gets sick on it, a bear will not get the kind of wear that a baby blanket or a piece of clothing would. And I absolutely love Zoe Mellor's Knitted Toys book, and want to knit everything in it anyway (when have you ever picked up a knitting book and fallen in love with every single pattern in there?!?!? If I knit two patterns from the same book, I consider that a bonus and feel proud of my frugality!). So I had to start somewhere.

Although it's a stockinette pattern, the head does require a bit of counting, and I ended up putting the project on hold for a little while this summer because I was only knitting on Sunday afternoons with my group -- and group knitting, in this case, is not conducive to counting. But I could count and listen to the Democratic National Convention at the same time, so the bear eventually got done. Just in time for Baby!

(In the mean time, Doc the Cat likes to cuddle up and fall asleep on the bear -- good practice for when Baby is ready to cuddle with Bear.)

19 September 2008

Blue Eyelet Cardigan, part 2

I finished the Blue Eyelet Cardigan, and have been wearing it a ton.

I was totally right: I needed a little cotton sweater for the Vermont evenings, and this cardigan is just the thing to take the chill off. Buttons (and four of the five skeins of yarn) from Kaleidoscope. (The other skein is from WEBS. And my friend Leandre gave me a couple of scraps, too -- thank you!) The woman who assisted me when I chose buttons was so helpful. I love that place.

I normally hate knitting with cotton, but I am in love with Blue Sky Alpacas' Dyed/Organic Cotton, and will always be true. Sooooo soft.

I could see working this pattern again, maybe in red or brown next time. And if I do, I will totally buy the correct number
of skeins (and the same dye lot) the first time.

15 September 2008

Labyrinth Rug update

The Labyrinth rug started small, you'll remember. But I have been working on it, little by little.

Now it's getting bigger. It's about 25 feet long so far, and I will probably keep going a bit more. Some sources say the pattern calls for 20 feet, some sources say the pattern calls for 20 yards. I don't actually own One Skein, and I can't remember whether I'm supposed to knit for feetage or yardage, but the latter is three times the former, and that's a lot of knitting. Really I just think I'll knit until I'm done knitting and I think it's big enough.

Doc the Cat likes it, and that's good enough for me. He likes sitting next to the rug, but not on it. He's funny like that. Also, he may feel differently when it's sewn together and not a weird squishy mess like it is now.

13 September 2008

Mittens for Him, Cuffs for Me. How Cute!

Crazy Aunt Purl inspired me. I got some red Lopi from the sale bin at the Knitting Studio in Montpelier one afternoon, and right around that same time, Laurie was makin' mittens. I definitely caught the bug, and decided that Husband needed some good mittens for the winter. For all that shoveling he's going to do when the snow begins to fall (ahem).

So I grabbed by Size 9 DPNs and based my mittens on the Super Mittens pattern (Ravelry link) from Weekend Knitting, just like CAP did. But I doubled the cuffs (knit 12 rows, purl one row, tuck under, knit 12 more rows, on the 13th row after the purl, knit into the cast-on row to close the hem) and made them extra-long so he could tuck them into his jacket sleeves nicely. And then I made some fingerless mitts for me with the leftovers. So now we have matching handwear (cute!), but I'll need him to help keep my fingers warm (sickeningly cute!). Awww.

The mittens may get a bit of a hot water dip for some slight fulling, if I ever get around to it. They may not. We'll see.

He's such a good sport when it comes to posing for blog pictures. Thanks, honey!

11 September 2008

Baby Surprise Jacket II: Spring Edition

A couple of months ago I finished Baby Surprise Jacket II: Spring Edition. The yarn is Mountain Colors 4/8s Wool in the "Sagebrush" colorway, and I used US size 8 needles (used 7s for the first one -- I'm hoping the sizing will work out well).

A zillion thanks to KnittinMama for selling me the second skein I needed, even in the midst of her cross-country move (seriously! she popped it in a FedEx box somewhere in Ohio as she was driving from California to New York!).

Sister likes both the jackets, and although I need to re-sew the shoulders on the first one I made (the neck hole is wayyyy too small on the first BSJ -- I modified it the second time so that the neck would be a bit larger), I'm pretty hopeful that they'll each fit the baby at the right times. Steelhead for fall, sagebrush for spring!

08 September 2008

Laundry List -- or finishing list, in this case

You know it's been a long time since you've updated your blog when your mom sends you an email saying "what have you been knitting lately?"

The truth is, I've been knitting a ton this summer. I can't put the needles down. I went to a wedding last night, and seriously considered bringing with me the Dashing that's in rotation now -- I mean, it's small, nobody will see me if I pull it out during the ceremony, right? Thank goodness I didn't, as there were only about 30 people at this wedding, and we were sitting around in a circle on a boat/barge, and knitting would have been very conspicuous and rude, since I was only about 5 feet away from the huppah.

Anyway, my point is, I'm turning into one of those women who has an "I'd rather be knitting" bumper sticker on her car. (Figuratively. I hate all stickers in real life: they give me the heebie-jeebies.) So that's why I haven't been blogging. It's too hard to knit and blog at the same time. I don't have enough fingers.

I don't have pictures of everything I've done lately. Heck, I haven't even put them all into Ravelry. I've lost track of all my projects, but here's a quick update. You're welcome, Mom.
  • Labyrinth Rug -- in progress (still)
  • Surprise Project for Woman who works in Coffee Shop -- in progress (this is a Sunday afternoon knitting group thing; more after we give it to her); somehow I have become the person designated to collect and hang on to everybody's contributions.
  • Blue Cotton Sweater is done! All the way done! I've been wearing it lots.
  • Mittens for Husband and Matching Mitts for Me (awwww...) -- Lopi. Done except for weaving in ends
  • Red Teddy Bear for Sister's Baby -- knitting is done, need to stuff and sew together.
  • Also, the bride of the wedding I went to yesterday wants me to make this same teddy bear in yellow for her daughter's bun-in-the-oven. And she will pay me. Score! I guess that makes me a knitting professional.
  • Generic Christmas Stocking -- in progress, using leftover scraps, mostly Lopi.
  • Blanket-with-Sleeves: done, except that I need to sew it together.
  • Snow White Cable Hat - Lopi. Done in two nights. Um, I do need to weave in the ends. I hate finishing, have you noticed?
  • I started Dashing this weekend, and have been making fast progress. I'm almost done with the first mitt, and am enjoying the ease and speed of this pattern that I'm thinking this may be "the year HolyKnitter gave everyone the same damn gloves for Christmas" I'm using some very moth-eaten Jamieson's Shetland Spindrift (right), doubled, and doing quite a bit of spit-splicing.
  • And this weekend I met up with many friends (and met many new friends) at the Vermont Sheep and Wool Festival. I bought yarn (a cone of 2,250 yards of nameless DK wool for $15! wooo!), I saw my farm people (Hi Kim!), and I ate a lamb burger. Mmm! All in all, a good time. So good, I forgot to take pictures.
I feel like there might be more that I've forgotten. Seriously productive summer. I've also been swatching some unnamed superwash wool for Christmas donations (also with my Sunday afternoon knitting group). Anyway, there you go, Mom. And everybody else.