Wednesday, February 24, 2010

A Bevy of Firsts

My lifestyle doesn't lend itself well to podcasts, so I've only listened to a few in the years I've been an avid knitter.  The only one that really sticks out was an interview with Shannon Okey.  After listening to it, I wanted a spinning wheel and I wanted it now.  I immediately bought her book, Spin to Knit, and have been dying to try the handspun yoke sweater ever since then.  This yarn is destined for that project.

This is the first time I have spun from a bat, and the first time that I have spun yarn with a particular project in mind. I got the batt from Funky Fiber Farm on etsy, also making it my first etsy purchase!  Then I chain plied the bobbin full of singles, making this the first time I chain plied.  I found a great tutorial here, and, after watching it a couple times, managed to chain ply the entire skein in an hour or so. 

Total length is 166 yds, ravelry page is here.  Anyone else looking forward to whatever changes ravelry has planned to accommodate spinning projects?

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Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Garter Yoke Henley

Recently, I was reorganizing my stash and noticed that my sport/dk weight drawer was getting ridiculously full.  In fact, my ziploc bag with 4+ skeins of swish DK leftover from my St. Brigid wouldn't fit at all.  Frustrated, I tossed it on the floor and went to look for a pattern to knit it up since it wasn't fitting back in the drawer.  I am loving all the garter yoke sweaters that I've been seeing on blogs and ravelry, mostly from the knit.1 pattern.  I didn't have the pattern (I do now... :) so I busted out Ann Budd's Handy Book of Sweater Patterns and worked up a kids' seamless yoke sweater with garter stitch edgings.  Once I got to the yoke, I split it for a henley and worked the entire yoke in garter stitch.  `I ran out of swish DK for the top and worked the last inch or so in leftover Elegance.  `
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I have the buttons picked out, but haven't gotten a chance to sew them on yet.  Sweet pea has already adopted this as her sweater of choice, and I haven't even gotten a chance to block it yet.  It's weighs in at 494 yds, 472 of which is the swish DK.  The link to my project page is here.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Romney Square

Remember that white romney that was so uninspiring?   I busted out the Jacquard Acid dyes, spent some time one afternoon mixing and simmering, and came out with with a much improved pearlescent green and purple.  About half of that has become this:
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Please dom't mind the sulky look.  I think Sweet Pea is practicing being a teenager about 10 years too early.
I used Jared Flood's Turn a Square pattern yet again.  It's the only hat pattern I have memorized, so it just keeps coming back!  It was a quick knit and used about 100 yds.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Triinu Birthday Scarf

I have family visiting from out of town right now, which has been tons of fun but has superceded blogging.  However, the sun is just rising, the automatic coffee maker has not yet started grinding, and the rest of the house is sleeping peacefully.  I, dear readers, am bringing you... this!

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This is the Triinu Scarf from Knitted Lace of Estonia, knitted in Knit Picks Gloss Lace, colorway Aegean.  I hated this yarn the first time I tried it, which is weird because everyone else seems to have overwhelming lurve for it.  I didn't hate it this time, but it certainly didn't fill me with snuggly goodness while I was knitting.  Also, the only modification I made to the pattern was to leave out the nupps, because I abhor all things bobble.  Thus, I used only 396 yards for the entire project, making it a One Skein Wonder!


The best thing about this scarf?  Remember the aforementioned family?  My mom is in town to celebrate a Big Birthday (one with a 0 in it) and the scarf is for her.  And she loves it. 

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And have you seen these? I think I'm in danger of needing these.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Craftster-Inspired Dress

The kids have no been to school all week. Between bronchitis, snow days, and President's day, we have been all snuggled in together. There's been good books, good movies and nature specials, some good food, all punctuated by coughing.

I have done some knitting, but none of its quite ready to show off. I did, however, finally complete a sewing project!

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Before you get too impressed, it's reconstructed from 2 different shirts.  There's feet of snow on the ground and yet, just a few weeks ago, I couldn't find a long sleeved girls' dress in any store. Apparently, January is when everyone starts coming out with their spring lines.  It's also the time when Sweet Pea grew several inches, making all of her winter dresses too short.  My sewing machine and I still aren't close enough that I wanted to sew a week's worth of playdresses, so I found this great idea on craftster.  In short, cut the bottom off of a t-shirt and sew on a skirt of knit fabric.  We found several clearance shirts at Target for our experiment, some in her size and some in 14/16 to use for the skirt.  After resolving a two week long dispute with my machine, I finally got all the seams done!  And, she loves it, making it work the effort.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Snowed In

We, like so much of the east coast of the US, are snowed in. Both of the kids are sick, so we hadn't planned on leaving much, but are bitterly disappointed that they can't go frolic in the snow.

Not that I'm complaining - there's plenty to do inside! I've got a house guest coming next week (hi Mom!) and need to clean the guest room. I've got a job interview next week, tests to grade, and an exorcism to perform on a demon-possessed sewing machine so I can finish the dress that Sweet Pea so desperately wants. There's snow to shovel and a batch of soup that needs to be dreamed up and made for next week's easy food. It's 7am on Saturday and what am I doing? Finishing a hat, listening to my Everlast station on Pandora, and rearranging my ravelry queue.

Let's talk about queues for a moment, shall we? It has recently come to my attention that some people resent their queues, find them stressful, or nagging. I've got 7 pages, and I use it like my own personal knitting magazine. Every time a pattern catches my attention, I throw it on there. Then, I don't have to waste valuable knitting time thinking, 'now where was that belted sweater pattern?' and can just page through at will. This morning I've rediscovered several patterns that I suddenly must knit Right Now. If you'll excuse me, I'm off to browse some yarns to go with.

Happy Weekend, readers :)