Sunday, March 30, 2008

Sometimes, you just need to make baby booties.

Like this one. I actually made three of these widdle bitty Mary Janes. No, as far as I know the baby does not have three feet, and yes, I gave two to the mom at the baby shower. But they're so cute, and they are SO incredibly quick! (Linda, do we need baby booties for the charity knitting?) I also made a Baby Kimono from Mason-Dixon Knitting, but as I finished it 25 minutes before the shower started, I didn't get a picture. The two booties I gave with the sweater took less than 30 minutes to make!

In other news, I finished my Monkeys with the yarn my aunt & uncle got me for Christmas. It's Tempted, a hand-dyed yarn from a lady in Tulsa. This colorway is called Fiesta, but I think of it more as springtime in the woods. It's really interesting how the colors work up into miniature colorways. The purple and yellow combine for "pansies," the green and brown are the "woods," and the pink and blue are "wildflowers." You can't really see the pattern as well, but it's useful as a motivation - one uninterrupted pattern repeat took about 30-40 minutes. I really enjoyed working with this yarn, especially after the Sockotta!

I'm in a bit of a knitting slump right now. I have several projects in mind, but it's hard to decide which one I want to start. It's been a while since I had a "big" project. Sweater? I have several sweaters' worth of wool. More challenging lace? We'll see. But first I need to cast on for some more socks. I get antsy if I don't have anything on the needles. Maybe that's the Puritan/Scottish utilitarian in me.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008


The past week, my life has not been my own. I've had everything from first cousin once-removed's first birthday parties to a good friend's funeral to uncontrollable kindergarteners to a work day that didn't end until 10:25 last night. At least I've been able to get a good bit of knitting done (at work) on my Monkeys from the Tempted Hand-Painted sock yarn, which I LOVE. I'll post pictures when I'm not semi-comatose. (This yarn is quite possibly the best I've ever worked with.)

Now, off to knit a baby sweater for a shower on Friday...are IOU's acceptable for knitted gifts?

Monday, March 17, 2008

The Knitting o' the Green

Happy St. Patricks Day to one and all!

In other news, I finished my first pair of Monkeys at the guild meeting yesterday.
Sockotta isn't my favorite yarn. The cotton makes a very rough, hard sock that stretches out easily. But I got it for Christmas this year...and last year...maybe I need to drop hints that there's better stuff out there!

You know how sometimes a yarn just tells you what it should be?
Well, this one certainly did.

And who am I to question the yarn?

Sunday, March 09, 2008

How to keep an eleven-year-old occupied

The little girl my sister tutors was at our house on Saturday with not much to do. The solution? Give her some recycled cream-colored wool, Kool-Aid, and egg dye.

This is the colorway that Bianka picked out. It's purple egg dye, pink egg dye, and cherry Koolaid-knockoff. The purple separated a bit, but the pink and red turned out well.

So now I have a big ball of girly-colored wool. I'll be making hats or scarves for Bianka and her sister.

This is the colorway I picked out. It's supposed to be dark blues and greens. I mixed blue and green Wilton's food color paste with Wilton's black color paste...and discovered that either the black was just ultra-concentrated red, or vinegar changed the color.

It took soooo long to get all the wool dyed on this one. I had it packed in too tightly, and when I poured on the dye, it stuck to the closest wool and wouldn't budge. Every time I thought it was done, I'd pull a bit out and find huge white blobs. I had high hopes for this colorway ("Mess"), but you can't even see any blue on it!

Monday, March 03, 2008

A woolly day

Today was the type of day that is positively perfect for wool. It started with a thunderstorm and was snowing by the time I was on the road. So I'm wearing my Hourglass Sweater, some socks from Lion Brand Magic Stripes, and earlier I also wore my Lunch Break Hat, Dreamswatch scarf, and Fetchings. It's such a joy to be able to keep others (and yourself!) warm with things you make from waving around string and sticks.

Good news on the Tangled Yoke Cardigan! I sent it through the washing machine, and it's back to its intended size. Machine washing the Silky Wool also gives the fabric a velvety texture. It's a good thing, too, because I really did not want to frog that sweater.

My goal this year is to knit six sweaters. I've got two-ish down, but now I'm having a hard time deciding what to knit next. For a while, I've been adoring Eustice from Berroco, but I have just barely not-enough sportweight wool for it.

Sunday, March 02, 2008

A pretty and an (intentional!) ugly

I've been in a race with myself to see how fast I could make this. (That, and the book's due back at the library.)

Pattern: Shetland Triangle from Wrap Style
Yarn: Sportweight/DK-ish cashmere from a thrift store sweater (color's most accurate in the closeup)
Needles: US 8
Cast on: 2-21-08
Cast off: 3-1-08
Blocked: 3-2-08
Modifications: I did an extra repeat (or maybe two) of the main fir cone pattern to make it bigger.

Lace on big-ish needles goes SO fast! It also had the benefit of being a very easy-to-memorize lace pattern. This was also the first time I've worked with cashmere. It's soft, but somehow it didn't feel as elastic as wool. When wet, it also smells just like wool.

And for the ugly: remember the Frankencloth? Here it is in all its completed, misshapen glory.
This was a fun project - it's just a bag of dishcloth cotton odds & ends amalgamated into a...thing.

I worked on my second Monkey sock yesterday on the way up to Tulsa. My grandmother has an acreage south of Jenks, and we went up to clear branches out of the tractor lanes. The weather was, simply, perfect. We came home filthy, scratched up, sunburned (especially me - the joys of an Irish complexion!), and exhausted, but all in all, it was a very good day. I got to hang out with my buddies Magnum and Elvira, the miniature donkeys, and Eight-Ball, the slightly deranged llama. (Totally forgot my camera yesterday. Rats.)