Tuesday, April 26, 2011

So my camera has entered the Baroque period

and I'm a little miffed about it, since it's my fault it's broken.  Blech.  Story below in blue, for people who are as naturally curious as I am...

So a decision must be made: until I get a new camera (ETA TBD FCOL), should I do words-only posts OR include pics taken with my admittedly-awful camera phone (sample below)?
actually, can you even tell the difference?
I'll leave the poll up for a week, starting......... now!

I was recording a video of PQ Pie being cute and playing peek-a-boo; the birds were singing, my hair was especially shiny, etc.  I went to press the button to stop recording when ALL OF A SUDDEN the camera leapt from its perch to the stone tile floor below.  The lens was still protracted, it's all crooked now, "lens error, restart camera," sad face.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter...

...to those who celebrate!

 And now to document my raging case of Startitis:
This is Cute Summer Top by Anna & Heidi Pickles, knit in South West Trading Company Bamboo, colorway 138 Purplexed.  More on this later!

Thursday, April 21, 2011


>> After picking up the second mitt of Starstuff again... I had to put it back down.  Complete with frogging.  Blerg.

>> I was listening to the radio on my drive home from work, and the DJ was extemporizing on the Capitals hockey game last night and how nail-biting and awesome their win was and how he "can't wait for them to take care of business on home ice" for the next game.

He said: Home ice.
I heard: Wollemeise.

They sound nothing alike.  But my brain made a sound switcheroo.

>> When I was flipping through People magazine's Most Beautiful 2011 issue, I was mesmerized by this cropped cabled sweater that J.Lo was wearing:

Also?  That woman had twins three years ago.  Dang.

Monday, April 18, 2011

FO: Simple Stone Shrug

The "Autumn" Four Seasons Kimono went so quickly, I thought to myself: I should definitely knit some more for the Punkin, as she has already started to grow out of her other sweaters n such.  Changing seasons, lighter yarns...  quick knit on a whim!  This one was done in less than a day.
Pattern is rejoice ('shrug this' for little girls) [Rav link only] by talitha kuomi, knit in about half a skein of Lion Brand Cotton-Ease in 149 Stone.  One of these days I'll get a digital scale, but until then, please bear with my guesstimation.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

FO: "Autumn" Four Seasons Kimono

It is finished, it is delivered, it is beautiful:
as of Monday night

Again, this is Seamless Baby Kimono by Jacki Kelly, knit with less than 1 skein of Lion Brand LB Collection Superwash Merino in 141 Wild Berry.  The Monday night photo is truest to color.

The baby shower at Sammy's work went well, from what I understand.  And mine was not the only hand-knit offering [Rav link]!

I'm just glad I got finished in time, in the wee hours of Wednesday morning...
Yes, that's 3.06 AM.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Back on the Unicorn (it's OK, we have an agreement)

Alright! So!  Picking myself up, dusting myself off, casting on anew...
love this color; it's called Wild Berry

This is Autumn as of last night, the fourth in a series of Seamless Baby Kimono sweaters (design by Jacki Kelly).  I call them my Four Seasons Kimonos, as they are all knit in seasonally appropriate colors (yarn is Lion Brand Superwash Merino for extra easy baby care).

Spring, in Spring Leaf, was knit during spring 2010 and belongs to Mademoiselle P. Q. Pie, now sadly outgrown:

Summer, in Dijon, was knit during summer 2010 for a surprise-type swap; its owner is camera-shy, but here's the color I used:

Winter, in Sky, was knit for big baby F in December 2010.

So I'm knitting Autumn in spring -- so what?  This is an emergency: baby shower on Wednesday!!  Can I finish in time?

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Another One Bites the Dust

-sigh-  Do you remember that Baby Love Diagonal Baby Blanket I was working on?  I used 220 Superwash Paints, I called it the project Principessa [Rav link], I thought I was very clever.

I knit about 45% of the blanket...
so pretty.  so incomplete.
and realized that I had used 66% of the yarn I had allotted.

To the frog pond.
oh, also? the baby shower is this Wednesday. surprise!

Between the budget issues of the U.S. federal government (seriously, you guys, keep paying me; I'm worth it) and not one but TWO knitting project blunders, this is a week of fail.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Two rights make a really wrong

Soooo.... good news and bad news.

Good news: my KniCroBlo Week post on the Ghost of Citron Cardigan prompted me to pick it back up!

Good news: I've learned to cable without a needle in the interim!

Good news: no cable needle + increased skill set = much faster knitting!

Bad news: well... there's this:
Uh oh.
A lot has changed in the past, oh, two years.  Let's break it down.
Merrhrrmm uneven
Looks like my tension has gotten looser...
You're doing it wrong!
Ah yes!  Twenty inches means eleven small cables on one side and ten on the other.  Fantastic.

I guess this means I'm going to completely frog the new stuff and revert back to using a cable needle...  any other ideas?

Sunday, April 3, 2011

My knitting time | 2KCBWDAY7

Write about your typical crafting time. When it is that you are likely to craft – alone or in more social environments, when watching TV or whilst taking bus journeys? What items do you like to surround yourself with whilst you twirl your hook like a majorette’s baton or work those needles like a skilled set of samurai swords? Do you always have snacks to hand, or are you a strictly ‘no crumbs near my yarn!’ kind of knitter?

It is Day 7 of KniCroBlo Week and I cannot continue this post without noting the following:
  1. All thanks goes to the incomparable Eskimimi for organizing this fantastic intarwebz event!!  I have loved reading the blogs of so many talented crafters, many I would never have found otherwise.  I've even come out of my usual lurking-shyly mood and posted some comments along the way.  Good times were had by all!
  2. I have never posted seven days in a row (I've never posted three days in a row!).  Therefore, I am le tired* and will be taking at least two days break to, you know, actually knit something before I post again.

In the photo above, you see the view from my usual knitting perch, my computer chair in the office attached to the kitchen.  Eagle-eyed readers will notice, in no particular order:
  • television tuned to "What Not to Wear"
  • remote that doesn't work AND has no batteries
  • mentho-lyptus cough drop wrappers
  • colorful plastic links for making distract-the-baby chains
  • World of Warcraft game manual, age six, newly obsolete
  • emergency sewing kit that belongs in my purse
  • camera battery charger (camera in-hand)
  • pile of random papers that don't relate to each other
  • gigantic flat-screen monitor; Firefox! Ravelry!
  • plastic lattice baby cage for Ms. Punkin Q. Pie
  • vinyl devil horns and tail from Halloween
  • 36 skeins of embroidery floss, apropos of nothing
  • folded baby pajamas that no longer fit their owner 
  • San Diego Zoo baby panda mouse pad
  • piled up boxes, still unpacked from our move
  • alarm clock with a late PM hour
and, of course:
  • stitch markers, green and purple
  • crochet hook for fixing mistakes (ahem.)
  • cable charts for the Citron Cardigan
  • WIP: Starstuff Mitts (pics here and here)
  • US 6 dpns that haven't made their way upstairs to the organizational system
  • plastic straight ruler for ruling with an iron fist/plastic straightedge

* points to anyone who can correctly identify the origin of "le tired."

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Something to aspire to | 2KCBWDAY6

Is there a pattern or skill that you don’t yet feel ready to tackle but which you hope to (or think you can only dream of) tackle in the future, near or distant? Is there a skill or project that makes your mind boggle at the sheer time, dedication and mastery of the craft?

The column on the left of this page is the Knit List: the catalog of knitting skills I've already tried (dare I say, mastered), the ones I have yet to attempt, and other fun stuff to accomplish (knitting in public, using recycled yarn, etc.).  BUT (I like big buts and I cannot lie) there is one item that I feel sure will never, ever, evereverevereverever be completed.

S · T · E · E · K · I · N · G

NO.  Never.  No.

"Steek" rhymes with "Eek!" and I can't think that's a coincidence.  It has 80% of its letters in common with "Steak," but while the latter fills me with meaty goodness, the former fills me with dread.  Eunny Jang dedicated seven full blog posts to the subject.  In Knitting Without Tears, Elizabeth Zimmermann suggests that one "lie down in a darkened room for fifteen minutes to recover" (p61) after cutting armholes for the first time.  Wendy Johnson calls cutting "the fun part" in her Knitty feature "You want me to cut WHAT?"; I'm inclined never to trust her again... even if she does indicate a "celebratory margarita" as the proper way to observe the occasion.

Clearly, this is scary business.  And I haven't the stomach for it.

No steeks here.  Oh heck no.
This tulip cardigan was knit flat, as written in the pattern, and it wasn't difficult.  Do people not like purling that much?

The most obvious reason for my steek strike is my love of superwash merino.  In fact, a bad experience with felting (maybe maybe I'll write about it sometime, if I'm ever feeling especially masochistic) has led me away from most yarns that lend themselves to this sort of thing.

What it really comes down to is this: I can enjoy a libation and a lie-down without experiencing sheer terror beforehand, thankyouverymuch.  Life's scary enough as it is without bring renegade scissors into it.